" I'm in no way condoning what that guy on Ebay is doing but the problem with the copyright owner is that they are not making drawings
available for all of the boats that they produced hence why the likes of that guy on Ebay are able to keep on selling albeit illegally."
I'm not suggesting that you are condoning what they are doing - I'm just saying that complaining to Ebay won't help at all - giving the seller bad feedback will help a little.
There is a problem with old boat plans
and copyright. The US and the EU together - under corporate lobbying - brought in a rule that copyright exists for a very long time, which was totally against the aim of the original copyright legislation.
This creates the problem of 'copyright orphans'. Old model
suffer a lot from this - they were often created by a small company which eventually closed down without passing copyright ownership on. Under EU legislation the copyright still exists, but is probably owned by relatives of the original holder - who won't know anything about it.
Worse - ownership will be spread around the relatives - at a worst case there may be 50 or more of them. The EU says that you should make best efforts to trace them and obtain permission. Good luck with that! And if you were to trace them all, almost certainly one would consider that a nice little earner had fallen into their lap, engage a lawyer and ask for a stiff fee....
I run a web site
aimed at gathering these old plans
, addressing copyright issues and publishing them for free, so as to save them from oblivion. in most cases the copyright resides with another big hobby
company who will have bought up the rights to many small ones, and in most cases they are happy to give me permission to publish their old plans
. Occasionally a company employs an archivist who will provide plans
for a fee - and occasionally the old kits are still available. in that case I don't publish. I have only had one company say that they would not provide prints of old plans
, but that I could not publish either. That was MidWest.
I seem to do better with the USA hobby
ists than I do in the UK. I have quite a large collection of Sterling plans
, for instance, but very few from the old UK companies like Feltra. if anyone has any old plans
that they would be happy getting onto the web, go to http://oldboats.tk and have a look around....