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Old Jan 11, 2012, 03:54 PM
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United States, CO, Parker
Joined Mar 2011
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What they're talking about isn't paying to use the standard, but paying for the text of the standard itself. It does sound screwed up, though in the legal context it's actually not that uncommon for privately drafted laws to remain under copyright to the organization that drafted them. The Uniform Commercial Code, for example is copyrighted and owned by the American Law Institute, dispute the fact that every state has adopted some variety of it and it forms the basis for just about every type of commercial transaction in the United States. The text of an individual state's version is likely in the public domain, but the current official version is published and copyrighted by the ALI, and my law school text books actually have to pay a license fee to publish it.

I admit though that in this context, it seems particularly stupid for the AMA to insist on asserting copyright ownership over the standard and actually sell its text. For one thing, there's no way they'll be able to enforce it. As soon as the standard comes out its text will be all over the net, including I'm sure this forum. Unless the AMA wants to waste its time constantly sending takedown notices against people who post the standard online, there's really no point in trying to sell copies of it or assert a copyright over it at all. Second, even if they did want to, if the AMA is really all about safety as they claim, wouldn't they want ALL modelers to follow the new standard? Making people pay to read it is totally contrary to their broader goal of promoting safe model aviation.
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