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Posted: 9/27/2004 12:16:10 PM EST
I just read that Colt sued Bushmaster in the early 90s for making M4s. Didn't they also sue HK for the same thing? It seems like they are just a bunch of sissies that are afraid of free market. Also what basis do they even have to sue? The M-16 design is over 40 years old now and there should be no patent issues.

Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:17:08 PM EST
Not sissies.

Just want to put the other companies out of bizness.

Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:18:25 PM EST
Trademark violations are a bitch...

Would Dell be able to brand a product called the "Mac"? Nope...
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:18:31 PM EST
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:19:12 PM EST

Originally Posted By DriftPunch:
Trademark violations are a bitch...

Would Dell be able to brand a product called the "Mac"? Nope...



Yep.

CRC
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:19:33 PM EST
They have not sued me.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:20:05 PM EST

Originally Posted By EagleArmsHBAR:
I just read that Colt sued Bushmaster in the early 90s for making M4s. Didn't they also sue HK for the same thing? It seems like they are just a bunch of sissies that are afraid of free market. Also what basis do they even have to sue? The M-16 design is over 40 years old now and there should be no patent issues.





yeah but the M4 is less than 20 years old
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:20:34 PM EST
To inspire loyalty in the Colt cool aid people.

"YOu better like our crappy politically correct rifles, or we'll sue you!!!!!"

Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:20:38 PM EST
The M4 was developed back around 1987-1988?

CRC
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:21:30 PM EST

Originally Posted By CRC:
The M4 was developed back around 1987-1988?

CRC




yeah it was something like that
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:22:35 PM EST

Originally Posted By garandman:
To inspire loyalty in the Colt cool aid people.

"YOu better like our crappy politically correct rifles, or we'll sue you!!!!!"




+1 and a piss poor way of doing it. Colt = the suck.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:22:44 PM EST

Originally Posted By EagleArmsHBAR:
I just read that Colt sued Bushmaster in the early 90s for making M4s.



IIRC they sued the Govt - as it was the Govt that asked Bushy to make the carbines (Colt couldn't keep up with demand during Gulf War 1).

Colt also sued the .Govt for releasing the M4 specs to FN - as the M4 data was proprietary.

Colt won both cases.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:24:37 PM EST
What is so special about the M4? Is it the flat top upper? Everyone is making them in the commercial sector, so what is the problem if someone makes the for the govt? Just dont mark them "M4"
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:24:47 PM EST
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:26:49 PM EST
Colt only can make the M4. FN only makes the M-16.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:27:27 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/27/2004 12:34:20 PM EST by guns762]
This is weird. My former student, and now student teacher just sold a pastel drawing at an auction at the Buffalo Bill Historical Center's exhibition and auction on Friday night. The drawing he did was a master's study of a drawing also used by Colt.


My student's work was not a copy, but used as a reference. It was a close up, stylized image of just the Cowboy, and the face didn't even look like the same guy. It was done in a pop Art/ Andy Warhol type of pastel drawing. They threatened to sue him. He finally got out of the problem because the grand daughter of the artist said he could use the image. Her grandfather let Colt use it, and now they think they own it. She was still pissed at Colt. She owns the rights, Colt uses the image, and a famous movie actor owns the painting.

We just got done with this conversation, and this is the first post I clicked on. Very strange.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:31:31 PM EST
IIRC, the M4 features proprietary designs for the feed ramp cuts and chamber dimensions, among other internal differences. The M4 is much more than a flat-top M16 carbine. I would presume that Colt's sensitivity comes from them developing the M4 on their own dime, and having to recoup the cost of the development throug hM4 sales. If the customer (in this case the US government) shared their copyrighted designs with anyone, particularly the competition, then Colt could clearly be adversely impacted.

It's a bit like buying a car. Just because you have that shiny new Kia, doesn't entitle you to start contracting other companies to build them.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:35:25 PM EST

Originally Posted By EagleArmsHBAR:
What is so special about the M4? Is it the flat top upper?


Nope the original suits IIRC were before the M4s had flattop uppers (they had A2 type uppers).



Everyone is making them in the commercial sector, so what is the problem if someone makes the for the govt?


Because Colt had a licensing agreement with the .Gov. They spent the time & money to devolp the M4 w/o any help from the US Govt. The licensing gives them a sole source contract for a specified time.

Part of the problems with Bushy related to their use of the technical package - which they were not entitled to use under the Colt Licensing agreement - for their commercial products. Ifyou are really interested, you can sign up for AR15-L@YahooGroups. In the archives there Scott J. has uploaded the legal summaries of the cases. Frankly they don't interest me that much, so gave them the lightest of skimmings.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:36:52 PM EST
If I owned the M4 design, I would sue, too.

H&K, Bushy, etc. should just pony up a royalty and seal it with a kiss, as Colt paved the way to their success (in that small area) and should be thankful for such a winner
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:37:20 PM EST

Originally Posted By CRC:
Colt only can make the M4. FN only makes the M-16.



That's not quite true.

Colt has and does produce M16A4s for the military occasionally.

Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:38:04 PM EST
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:39:37 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/27/2004 12:40:00 PM EST by garandman]

Originally Posted By redfisher:
If I owned the M4 design, I would sue, too.

H&K, Bushy, etc. should just pony up a royalty and seal it with a kiss, as Colt paved the way to their success (in that small area) and should be thankful for such a winner



What flavor cool aid are you drinking???

Henry Ford invented the car. I spoze you think Chevy should pay a royalty?? Ever heard of capitalism? Ever heard of competition???



Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:39:51 PM EST
From the Colt web site:
=======================================================
April 21, 2004
Colt Challenges Rivals? Illegal Marketing Practices

Colt Challenges Rivals? Illegal Marketing Practices

Connecticut-based Colt Strikes Back Against Copycat Manufacturers Bushmaster Firearms and Heckler & Koch

April 21, 2004, Hartford, Connecticut ? Colt Defense LLC today filed suit against Bushmaster Firearms, Inc. and Heckler & Koch and demanded that the two companies end their illegal marketing campaigns with respect to the Colt® M4® carbine.

In its lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, Colt cited acts of trademark infringement, trade dress infringement, trademark dilution, false designation of origin, false advertising, patent infringement, unfair competition, and deceptive trade practices. Colt is seeking injunctive relief and damages against the two companies.

Colt is the leading supplier of military and law enforcement weaponry and related products to the U.S. Government and many American allies. It holds a sole source contract to exclusively supply the M4 carbine to all branches of the U.S. military. Only Colt may manufacture an authentic M4 carbine; those made by others are imitations.

The M4 carbine evolved from the most combat-proven family of weapons, the Colt-developed M16 rifle. To develop this carbine, Colt at its own expense integrated 40 years of combat experience of the M16 rifle with advances in technology. Colt then offered this carbine to the U.S. Army that subjected it to a multi-year certification process before finally accepting it for use by American troops.

"This case is about the systematic efforts of Bushmaster and Heckler & Koch to confront us, not as competitors on a level playing field, but with unlawful marketing practices that misrepresent the nature of their products and disparage the products of Colt Defense," said Colt?s President and Chief Executive Officer, Lieutenant General William M. Keys, USMC (retired).

"Colt?s products have been the mainstay of the U.S. military for over 100 years, and have played a significant role in both World Wars and the Vietnamese conflict. Today, our products are in the hands of our elite forces in Iraq. Our reputation was earned the hard way, on the battlefield. And it is our battle-tested reputation that these defendants are attempting to exploit by selling M4 knockoffs," said General Keys.

According to the complaint, both Bushmaster and Heckler & Koch are intentionally and illegally blurring the distinction between their products and the products manufactured by Colt, particularly the M4 carbine. Both Bushmaster and Heckler & Koch have developed copycat versions of the M4 to profit from Colt?s good name and reputation.

In a transparent attempt to mislead potential customers into believing that they are buying "American Made" products, Heckler & Koch, whose principal place of business is Oberndorf, Germany, falsely states that it will manufacture firearms in a plant in Georgia that does not yet exist. In fact, Heckler & Koch?s manufacturing and engineering is performed outside the country, according to the complaint.

The complaint alleges that Bushmaster, which has no legal right or authority to sell to the U.S. military, has intentionally and illegally incorporated the look and feel of the Colt M4 into its "M4 type" carbine. By duplicating the appearance of a real M4 weapon, and employing calculated marketing that blurs the distinction between Colt?s products and their own, Bushmaster deceptively markets its "M4 type" carbine to the civilian market and foreign governments, hoping that consumers will confuse the goodwill associated with the Colt brand with Bushmaster, according to the complaint.

The complaint also alleges that Bushmaster has plagiarized Colt?s M16 and M4 parts numbers. By doing so, Bushmaster intentionally misrepresents to its non-military customers that Bushmaster parts are interchangeable with Colt?s AR-15®, M16? and M4® products ? a misrepresentation that could have serious safety repercussions.

Colt Defense LLC is an American company with a direct lineage to the original company founded by Samuel Colt in 1836. Colt Defense products command a global presence as the weapons of choice in over 50 countries. Located in West Hartford, Connecticut, its manufacturing facilities are ISO 9001-2000 certified and quality-certified by the U.S. Department of Defense. The Colt name is famous in the United States and throughout the world, and has long been associated in the minds of military, civilian and law enforcement customers with high quality and innovation. Many of Colt?s products have achieved legendary status. Over 9,000,000 authentic M16 rifles and M4 carbines have been installed for military and law enforcement use around the world.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:40:53 PM EST
Colt sues everyone in order to help support the local economy. Only gunmakers and lawyers live in CT.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:42:40 PM EST

Originally Posted By warlord:
The complaint alleges that Bushmaster, which has no legal right or authority to sell to the U.S. military, has intentionally and illegally incorporated the look and feel of the Colt M4 into its "M4 type" carbine. .




Kinfa like when Harley Davidson sues some of teh Jap manf's for stealing Harley's "sound."

I will NEVER but a CLot. EVER. If its the last gun maker on earth, I'd rather rip up a tree and make a club than own a CLot.

Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:48:34 PM EST

Originally Posted By garandman:
Henry Ford invented the car.




Actually, no he didn't. Ford invented the assenbly line as applied to cars. The car was invented long before Ford came out with the Model A.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:49:40 PM EST

Originally Posted By BobCole:

Originally Posted By garandman:
Henry Ford invented the car.




Actually, no he didn't. Ford invented the assenbly line as applied to cars. The car was invented long before Ford came out with the Model A.



And every auto maker using an assebly line should pay rolalties to Ford, according to CLot and the coolaid clan.

Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:52:14 PM EST
Colt rifles good, Colt the company bad
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 12:57:34 PM EST
According to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, Colt filed the trademark for M4 in 2001, and filed for M16 last year.

Within the past three years, Colt has started filing for trademarks for all of the classics, that is where the latest round of lawsuits are originating. For some reason, the .gov is giving Colt trademarks like "Single Action Army" which expired long ago. Judging the latest round of Colt patents, cowboy action manufaturers better be ready for some new legal problems.

Colt is a company who markets its name, not its products, so they must protect it.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 1:03:38 PM EST
Thanks for the correction Forest.

CRC
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 1:03:58 PM EST

Originally Posted By DzlBenz:
II would presume that Colt's sensitivity comes from them developing the M4 on their own dime, and having to recoup the cost of the development throug hM4 sales.



I was under the impression the M4 was originally designed for the UAE. Our gov't got on the bandwagon late.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 1:07:34 PM EST

Originally Posted By dport:
I was under the impression the M4 was originally designed for the UAE. Our gov't got on the bandwagon late.

Regardless, US gov't did not fund, sponsor or otherwise sanction the development, so Colt's position is that the technology represented in the M4 is proprietary and the they alone shall have the right to market the model as their own development.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 1:11:20 PM EST
Fixed it for you.....


Originally Posted By redfisher:
If I owned the M4 design, I would sue, too.

H&K, Bushy, etc. should just pony up a royalty and seal it with a kiss, as Colt ARMALITE paved the way to their success (in that small area) and should be thankful for such a winner

Link Posted: 9/27/2004 1:14:36 PM EST
I don't understand the hostility to Colt. If they have a valid trademark or patent they have every right to stop others from using it.

If Chevy called a car the Model T you can bet your ass Ford would sue. Patents and trademarks are another form of property. If they're not protected we get no inventiosn or innovation.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 1:18:23 PM EST
Free market system at work folks. If you do not defend your trademarks, then you lose them to the public domain. Colt's management would be negligent to their shareholders if they did not defend their trademarked items, especially when one considers that Colt their product line revolves more around their name rather than their product. Hence, trademarks matter. And whether or not you like Colt, Bushy and other rifle manufacturers have tried to capitalize on the popularity of the M4.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 1:21:34 PM EST
Good point Drakich. Without protecting trademarks people that trade in nonpatented items--like generic AR-15s--would find their branding of a gun as a Bushy or RRA or Colt or whatever would not work because others would come along and just label knock-offs Colt, Bushy, RRA etc. The M4 designation is just a variation on the theme. There are specific features of the Colt M4 that are patented and which the M4 designation discloses; these include the heavy buffer and the feed-rampcuts. Others don't have these becuase they are patented. So when they call their gun M4 it hurts Colt's brand.

This is a basic feature of the law that goes back 200 years. It has nothing to do with good guys, bad guys etc. And for you guys that knock Colt--or any other company--for their "greed," it's pretty obvious you've never hard to run a business and/or don't know how the world works. Colt's job is to make money. It will get blown away by its competition if it doesn't innovate, make good products, protect its property, and protect its brand.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 1:23:47 PM EST

Originally Posted By Drakich:
Free market system at work folks. If you do not defend your trademarks, then you lose them to the public domain. Colt's management would be negligent to their shareholders if they did not defend their trademarked items, especially when one considers that Colt their product line revolves more around their name rather than their product. Hence, trademarks matter. And whether or not you like Colt, Bushy and other rifle manufacturers have tried to capitalize on the popularity of the M4.


It's known collectively as intellectual property.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 1:36:39 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/27/2004 1:39:38 PM EST by shooter220]
double-tap
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 1:39:07 PM EST

Originally Posted By garandman:

Originally Posted By redfisher:
If I owned the M4 design, I would sue, too.

H&K, Bushy, etc. should just pony up a royalty and seal it with a kiss, as Colt paved the way to their success (in that small area) and should be thankful for such a winner



What flavor cool aid are you drinking???

Henry Ford invented the car. I spoze you think Chevy should pay a royalty?? Ever heard of capitalism? Ever heard of competition???






Apples and oranges. You sure as heck can patent unique technology, and other people have to find a different way to accomplish the same thing. In cars think about the various types of fuel injection, programming solutions to ABS, and variable valve timing. These ideas can be patented, and if someone rips off your design they pay you royalties. In order to avoid a patent infringment case a company needs to use differing technology, or pay royalties.






And every auto maker using an assebly line should pay rolalties to Ford, according to CLot and the coolaid clan.




And by this logic every MANUFACTURER would have to pay Ford, not just the auto industry. Very different than patenting a specific item.

shooter
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 1:39:21 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/27/2004 1:48:41 PM EST by gunman0]

Originally Posted By Publius:
I don't understand the hostility to Colt. If they have a valid trademark or patent they have every right to stop others from using it.

If Chevy called a car the Model T you can bet your ass Ford would sue. Patents and trademarks are another form of property. If they're not protected we get no inventiosn or innovation.



I thought M4 and M16 were arbitrary designations by the US military. Colt recently, within the past 3 years, filed for trademarks and then started suing. Colt is nothing but a machine shop. Since Sam died, almost every design they have made was handed to them, and they were licensed to produce the firearm. Browning's 1911 and Armarlite's AR15 have been their main products. The "M4" feed ramps, barrel profile, and hand guards were only slight changes to the AR15.

In the computer world we have seen this happen many times, someone will take Colt to court over their actions eventually. In the computer world, there was a company that made computer memory. All of the computer memory companies were all using the same designs for years, but noone had patented the technology. One company filed for patents on this already invented technology, and then sued the other companies, and won. Eventually they lost big time when they were sued, but for a while it was silly.

Colt is attempting the same thing in the firearms industry. If you notice, they recently filed for "single action army" and "model P". Both of these have been in use by other companies for years, and I bet you colt will soon sue them for trademark violations.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 1:42:13 PM EST

Originally Posted By DzlBenz:

Originally Posted By dport:
I was under the impression the M4 was originally designed for the UAE. Our gov't got on the bandwagon late.

Regardless, US gov't did not fund, sponsor or otherwise sanction the development, so Colt's position is that the technology represented in the M4 is proprietary and the they alone shall have the right to market the model as their own development.



I would agree in that Colt has claims to unique features of the M4, including the FSB, feed cuts, etc. for however long a patent protection lasts. However, the name M4 has been in the public for years now and only, what, last year they TM'ed it. That's fishy to me. If they didn't TM it in the beginning and others started using the same name too friggen bad.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 2:03:09 PM EST
So, what are the M4 features of the rifle that people are infringing on? Take Bushmaster for example (since they are named in the suit). M4 feedramps? No... "F" front sight base? No. M4 profile barrel? Yeah, I guess. No big deal if they just left out the M4 cuts, nobody needs them anyway. Flattop upper is not unique to the M4. Rifling on the Bushy is 1/9 instead of 1/7. So what's left? Collapsible stock?
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 2:05:18 PM EST
NEVER QUESTION THE HORSEY!!
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 2:19:51 PM EST

Originally Posted By SNorman:
So, what are the M4 features of the rifle that people are infringing on? Take Bushmaster for example (since they are named in the suit). M4 feedramps? No... "F" front sight base? No. M4 profile barrel? Yeah, I guess. No big deal if they just left out the M4 cuts, nobody needs them anyway. Flattop upper is not unique to the M4. Rifling on the Bushy is 1/9 instead of 1/7. So what's left? Collapsible stock?



There are no features. Colt is suing because it looks similiar, and the letters M4 appear in Bushmaster's advertising and part number. XM15E2S A3 M4...


This is a trademark suit, not a patent suit. Also, I've looked and can't find any patents relating to the M4 features anyway.

Colt just decided to TM old terms that they didn't think up and try to sue everyone. The HK upper is a piston design, appears different looking, but still uses the M4 part number so Colt is suing them. Its all Colt trying to stop competition using underhanded tactics.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 2:28:12 PM EST

Originally Posted By sgtar15:
NEVER QUESTION THE HORSEY!!



Link Posted: 9/27/2004 4:06:05 PM EST
Colt invented the M4. It's a Colt Designation from the start. The gave the secret design to the Army who in turn lent it to Colt's competition. Even if none of the details are patented, the combination is the trademark (like, say, the "whopper" at BK). Trademarks do not need to be registered to be protected, unlike patents. A novel trademark designation belongs to its initial user the minute it's first used. There's nothing under-handed about them wanting the exclusive use of the M4 designation. Only they are allowed to sell it to the government. I believe they do have patents on things like feed-ramp cuts, but I'll double-check. But they definitely have a trademark in the name before and after registration.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 4:09:00 PM EST
This "trade dress" issue is actually very big in the tactical clothing industry. If you go to lightfighter and elswhere you'll find that Blackhawk will basically completely copy the look and name of Eagle designs. The outright copying of the trade-marked designs leads to dilution of the integrity of the product for the original inventor.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 5:50:28 PM EST
I bet if your ass had invented the M4 and Colt and everyone else was using that name you would be pissed and wanted your money.

Link Posted: 9/27/2004 5:57:40 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/27/2004 6:05:59 PM EST by Da_Bunny]

Originally Posted By garandman:

Originally Posted By redfisher:
If I owned the M4 design, I would sue, too.

H&K, Bushy, etc. should just pony up a royalty and seal it with a kiss, as Colt paved the way to their success (in that small area) and should be thankful for such a winner



What flavor cool aid are you drinking???

Henry Ford invented the car. I spoze you think Chevy should pay a royalty?? Ever heard of capitalism? Ever heard of competition???







Henry Ford was the first to mass produce cars, he did not invent them.

Colt has a legal right to protect their trademarks, however they might find less resistance if they respected other companies trademarks as well. Colt has lifted technology from other manufacturers along the way.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 6:02:17 PM EST

Originally Posted By BB:
Colt sues everyone in order to help support the local economy. Only gunmakers and lawyers live in CT.



If you weren't right, I'd be offended.
Link Posted: 9/27/2004 6:08:40 PM EST

Originally Posted By RealFastV6:

Originally Posted By BB:
Colt sues everyone in order to help support the local economy. Only gunmakers and lawyers live in CT.



If you weren't right, I'd be offended.


They don't call that area of CT "Gun Valley" for nothing. All of the big gun USA makers have presence there.
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