Cybermodeler Online Editorial
I Didn't See That One Coming!
I look forward to checking email over my first cup of coffee in the morning but was a bit surprised this morning. Someone was genuinely upset at the notice we keep on the lower left side of the site that states: "Notice: The appearance of U.S. Air Force, U.S. Army, U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Coast Guard, Department of Defense, or NASA imagery or art does not constitute an endorsement nor is Cybermodeler Online affiliated with these organizations." Evidently this individual felt that this was some form of anti-American or anti-military political statement that we display. I politely replied to this person and explained that I am a proud USAF veteran and the reason for that disclaimer. While they understand, for those of you who might wonder, let me explain:
Several years ago, the word was going around the hobby industry that Congress was considering legislation that would require payment of license fees for producing kits or other items of US-made weapons systems. Despite best efforts, the law was passed and we now 'enjoy' the higher prices levied upon us for models of systems paid for by the taxpayer such as M1A2 Abrams, B-17 Flying Fortress, etc.
Last year, the Department of Defense required the military services to levy license fees for the use of service logos and names, but this time it had the potential of affecting print media as well. I reached out to the services to see what the impact of this new requirement was going to be on us and fortunately, we're currently exempted, though they suggested that we publish that disclaimer to indicate our compliance. If you're curious, you can visit the USAF Branding and Trademark Licensing site at www.trademark.af.mil or Google for the branding sites of the other services. So, there you have it, the short version of why that disclaimer is online. It is not because we're anti-American or anti-military, quite the opposite.
As we move into the New Year, let's put one more resolution down for 2017, build more models and enjoy the fellowship of other modelers!
That's all for now, have a Happy New Year and go build something!
Owner/Publisher, Cybermodeler Online