Demo’s Laser-Cut Designs new London Police Box

By Polar_Bear
In News
Jun 16th, 2012
8 Comments
590 Views

Demo’s Laser-Cut Design has a new London Police Box terrain accessory piece. Doctor sold separately.

From the release:

This kit includes enough laser-cut parts to create one Police Box and includes a 40mm, .125″ thick, birch wood base

A police box in 20th century Britain was a special type of telephone kiosk or callbox for use by members of the police force, or for members of the public to contact the police, fire or ambulance.

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  • It looks a little small (yes, I know it’s bigger on the inside) but it’s noticeably too short. The windows should be above the eye line of a person. Nice kit apart from that though.

  • metalsifter

    Hope they got a license from the BBC to use the Police box, since they own the rights to it.

    • It’s a Police box, the BBC have no claim to it’s design and certainly don’t hold any ‘rights’ to it whatever that may mean.

      • metalsifter

        Police boxes in the UK haven’t been used since the 80’s and yes, the BBC does hold the rights to it.

        http://lawclanger.blogspot.com/2008/08/trade-mark-law-its-bigger-on-inside.html

        “In 1996, the BBC applied for a trademark to use the blue police box design in merchandising associated with Doctor Who. In 1998, the Metropolitan Police filed an objection to the trademark claim, maintaining that they owned the rights to the police box image. In 2002 the Patent Office ruled in favour of the BBC, pointing out that there was no evidence that the Metropolitan Police—or any other police force—had ever registered the image as a trademark. In addition, the BBC had been selling merchandise based on the image for over three decades without complaint by the police.”

  • It’s not being used as a trademark, nor is it being labelled as a Tardis. Trademark status does not infer any extraneous ‘rights’. It’s all in that article if you’re still unclear.

    • metalsifter

      I did read it, it is being used as a trademark as well, they specifically said so and the BBC specifically applied for (and won) trademark status. The legal document is attached to the article as a PDF.

      Also:

      “There is a key difference, in that Opel’s main business was selling cars, not models of cars, whereas one of the BBC’s main businesses is in merchandising, which includes selling models of the TARDIS.”

      “WKLTS has muddied the water slightly by advertising the model as also being suitable to be a TARDIS. This might seriously dent any defence of legitimately selling an accurate model of just a police box. TARDIS as a word is also a BBC trade mark, and so its use in connection with sale of toys would almost certainly be a trade mark infringement in its own right.”

      This is the same reason the Privateer Press could not use the “red cross” symbol on their hospital building for Monsterpocalypse, it is a trademark owned by the Red Cross. Doesn’t matter if it was just a toy, they owned the imagery of the red cross just as the BBC own the imagery of the police box.

    • metalsifter

      The BBC is highly protective about their trademark of the TARDIS style ppolice box, including the use of the color blue, you aren’t the first to make a miniature of it either.

      Here’s more:

      http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/entertainment/2352743.stm

      “The case has been rumbling on since 1996, when the Patent Office originally accepted the Tardis as a BBC trade mark. ”

      http://www.policeboxes.com/pboxhist.htm

      “(This was not the first trademark application made by the BBC in relation to police boxes. On 9th August 1978 they filed a trademark application for “The TARDIS” [their 1996 application was for a “Police Public Call Box”] in relation to games, toys and playthings, and amusement contrivances and apparatus, but not, interestingly enough, including toy telephone boxes. The 1996 application covered many more categories, and also included the colour blue.) ”

      http://io9.com/5919000/six-strange-cases-of-science-fiction-trademarks

      “Blue Police Box
      Ownership Claimed by: British Broadcasting Corporation

      The first police call boxes that resemble the modern-day TARDIS appeared in Scotland in 1929, 34 years before Doctor Who premiered. But, by the time the BBC filed for a trademark on the iconic police boxes in 1996, they had been phased out. In 1998, the Metropolitan Police challenged the BBC’s application, claiming that it owned the trademark on police boxes. However, since no police agency ever registered a trademark on the police boxes, and in the time since the boxes had been phased out the general public only regularly saw police boxes on episodes of Doctor Who, the application was allowed to go forward (plus, the Metropolitan Police was ordered to pay the BBC £850 plus legal costs). That is how a once commonplace object became the trademarked property of the BBC. So, as cheeky as my top image is, you couldn’t put it on a t-shirt and sell it.”

      • Doesn’t really add much to the discussion, but Glasgow still has a number of blue police call boxes on the streets (there’s one a few hundred meters from my current location). There are no phones inside and I’m not sure who (groan) owns them.