No worries - here.... :)
I can't pretentend to understand why they printed what they did, more than a
year after the fact, and without even showing us...let alone how wildly
inaccurate it is.
Something's badly wrong there....
Did the offending tip occur in their last Tools and Shops edition?
Maybe they were trying to print the retraction in the same special edition
as the original article?
If you're gonna be dumb, you better be tough
Hi Mark -
Nope - the issue was a regular one... #171.
Of course - any retraction loses it's relevance if it's left long enough...
and this one was a dead issue, as far as FWW readers would be concerned...
As I said - I don't understand what they're trying to do, or why. I suppose
when they're done their turkey, I'll find out.
I had seen this before but it didn't even register as a recollection of
what was actually printed. I happened by chance to pick up the issue
last night to thumb thru again (while watching Peyton and his buddies
demolish the latest fodder :) ) and thought to look at the FWW response.
Must say it seemed like very standard and benign lawyer-speak for a CYA
statement. It seemed intended to be a very generic response to a
specific instance outlining a defense against future possible litigation
should that possibility arise that they are now documented as being
against appropriation of anybody's patent rights. That it took a year to
get into print for a slick-paper magazine doesn't surprise me a bit. As
it has essentially no specific response to the particular incident other
than as the preface for why the disclaimer at all, I can also see why it
was never brought to LV's attention before publication. In a
non-litigious society it would probably have been handled as a simple
personal letter but I suspect FWW Corporate treated it properly in
today's climate (even though all here and at FWW know enough of LV to
"know" it wouldn't be an issue in this particular case, there's no room
any more for such an approach in general, unfortunately.)
: I think I never read the letter because I did not expect it to be there.
: But I have since seen it and it was absolutely reasonable and in keeping
: with what I would expect from the class act I think is Lee Valley. I
: went off just on FWW's letter which seemed to be written because the
: editors's feet were put to the fire. I'm glad to be wrong and happy to
: apologize. (and I hope I'm not overdoing it. :-))
Here's what's weird: the letter from Lee Valley was written in
early July, 2004. Why is FWW publishing its comment now?
-- Andy Barss
3-6 months in the queue waiting for somebody to decide what to do about
it, another 6 months for it to be reviewed by some legal beagle and the
response written, then 3 months minimum to meet next production
You can have your opinion, but I thought the letter was rather polite and
shows all the class of the Lee family. They have the right and the need to
bring this to the attention of anyone mis-using the patent, deliberate or
not. I did not see one humiliating word in the letter.
The retraction by FWW what also done properly, IMO.
I read it as sarcastic. Paraphrasing - "..we ask our readers to buy one
and to not make their own?" <G>
We _all_ make shop made copies of commercial devices at one time or
another. Commercial devices become attractive if the item becomes a use
it every day piece, or is so inexpensive to buy that the shop made
version doesn't make sense.
All FWW really had to do was mention that the item was patented.
Remember, none of us saw the letter sent by LV, so we'll never know what
There's good information at:
Anyone who makes, uses, or sells the patented invention is a direct
infringer. Good faith or ignorance is no defense for direct infringement.
Under 35 U.S.C. Section 271(b), "whoever actively induces infringement
of a patent shall be liable as an infringer." Thus, in this case FWW
suggesting that people make this jig would make them an infringer, and
subject to legal action.
Not quite. If I photocopy sheet music, distribute it and play it, all
without payment, that's an infringement. If I listen to the song on
the radio, and, having heard it once, with my eidetic memory I can
repeat it any time, that's a damned good talent. [which I don't really
have.] I can't be banned from singing in the shower, or on the
street corner, putting the pie tin to a different purpose.
So ...I can make any damned thing I want for my own use. This is why
people go into Aikia with a tape measure, and why I figured out the
math on where to put the carousel to support a table top of their
design. I don't sell what I make through anyone else's design not
payed for. That would be illegal.
That's a copyright infringement, not a patent infringement.
The law in question (35 U.S.C. 271) begins as follows:
271. Infringement of patent
(a) Except as otherwise provided in this title, whoever without
authority makes, uses or sells any patented invention, within the
United States during the term of the patent therefor, infringes the
In a quick read-through, I didn't see any exception for personal use.
Normally the patent-holders just don't bother to sue people infringing
for personal use--it wouldn't be worth their while.
My statement was with regards to patents, while your example is about a
The laws covering them are different. For instance, you *must* defend a
trademark, or you can lose it. The same is not true for a patent.
Interesting point. When are you infringing on a patent and when are you
just using an idea? I suppose in the end it depends on the courts, but
I remember my brother saying, he is a sign painter, that if you change
a drawing by 20% it isn't consider an infringment. An example I can
think of in woodworking is the Lee valley marking gauge with the micro
adjust. This device looks considerably like the one made by glen-drake.
this a patent infringment? Is this any different than Fine woodworking
making a device that looks like something Lee valley produces.
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