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Stuff it Kirby!!

Are you one of the 122 or the 1017?


  • Total voters
    14
  • Poll closed .

gouvernail

Super Opinionated and Always Correct
A few months ago the ILCA asked its members whether you and your chosen successors should be cut out of the Laser financial picture and permanently removed from any position where you might possibly be exerting any official influence over the future of the design with repect to racing . The class has voted to no longer officially care whether builders have a contract with the designer or his asignees.

There is more. After all those years when you supported the game and made certain builders contributed generously to the Class organization, the class officers campaigned vogorously for and successfully convinced the members it was pointless to return support to you. The results say 90% of those who voted think the Class has no reason to stand up and make certain you continue to receive royalties for creating the boat we all love to sail. There will be no future support from the ILCA.

Oh yes...If that doen't make you feel bad enough??

Please realize, the class will continue to demand that all builders own rights to use the laser Logo and name. That stuff is WAY more important to our officers and 1017 voters than the actual boat you designed..

After all, without your design brilliance we could still have all the Laser races we please. Although the boats might have looked more like this.



On behalf of all of us who appreciate Bruce Kirby's efforts and continued support for the last four decades , I would love to pass on my true feelings to the 1017 of you who voted for no further influence from our designer and most long term supporter of the great game of Laser sailing...

but life is short and time wasted communicating with you could be spent enjoying the company of decent people.
 

Tillerman

Member
A sad day for the class when we say we believe that it's OK for builders to make profits off a boat design without having a contract with the designer or paying him any royalties.
 

Wavedancer

Upside down?
Staff member
I had expected a much closer vote. Goes to show that most 'regular' Laserites don't pay attention to the Laser Forum or to Sailing Anarchy where most of the serious (and not so serious) discussion has taken place.


But the Fat Lady hasn't finished her song, I predict.
 

LooserLu

LooserLu
If one estimates in the moment there are about 10.000 ILCA members to be permitted to vote on such votings, the voting turnout is really low: in total only 1139 (11,4%)! This gives some spacce to discuss scientifily about the reliability requirements of statistics. But, however, I say, as long as the ISAF didn't verified the change of the F.R., nothing changed. If the ISAF verified the Rule change, we have a new situation. Personally for me, a recreational Laserite that sometimes races at official ranking races, it is irellevant what the ICLA or ISAF changes. In future also I continue to sail that dinghy, actually called "Laser©/(TM)". There a many enough of those produced to sail for the rest of my lifetime :D

Ciao
LooserLu
...just one of the over 202.000

(directly to:
- Mr. Wesley W. Whitmyer, Jr. of St. Onge Steward Johnson & Reens, LLC: I 'm not afraid of YOU (and your here secretly viewing staff)... never!! Greetings of Europe, hahaha!!
- "Gouvernail": thanks you accompany us. I encourage you to do this in future, especially for this issue.)
 

redstar

New Member
Huh? How is this vote negating any legal requirement for builders to pay royalties to Kirby? Neither the old rule nor the proposed new rule mentions royalties or references any contract between the parties. And I'd be amazed if the contracts were dependent on the class rules.

Remember Kirby sold his rights, to a company who has since failed to resolve a bitter and protracted dispute with the largest Laser builder in the world. The end result of the dispute is that there will soon be no new boats or equipment available to 70% of the world market. Do you not see the significance of this to the class? No. New. Boats. Frankly, emotive arguments about loyalty to the man who designed the boat over forty years ago are irrelevant. So are speculative arguments about the builder dispute. Yes, the rights have now reverted to Kirby, but the situation still remains. He is obviously still closely aligned with the GS side.

The class has voted overwhelmingly to protect itself. In the six plus months that this has been going on, I'm yet to hear anyone suggest a viable alternative approach that the ILCA should have taken to deal with this. Plenty of criticism, some justified (communication) but no better ideas.
 

Tillerman

Member
Huh? How is this vote negating any legal requirement for builders to pay royalties to Kirby? Neither the old rule nor the proposed new rule mentions royalties or references any contract between the parties. And I'd be amazed if the contracts were dependent on the class rules.
Actually the old rule did require that a builder must have an "agreement" with Bruce Kirby or Bruce Kirby Inc. The whole point of this vote was to delete that requirement. I think it's reasonable to assume that any such contract between a builder and BK or BKI would require that the builder pay some fees or royalties to BK or BKI in return for the right to build boats to the Laser design.

And personally I would not be at all "amazed" if this class rule were the only thing requiring that builders continue to hold such agreements with BK and BKI. Why do you think Bruce Kirby and Global Sailing were so opposed to the rule change if it had no impact on BKI's ability to collect fees for using the Laser design and/or control who is allowed to build Lasers?

But it's all water under the bridge now. The class has made its choice and we will all have to live with the consequences.
 

redstar

New Member
Actually the old rule did require that a builder must have an "agreement" with Bruce Kirby or Bruce Kirby Inc. The whole point of this vote was to delete that requirement. I think it's reasonable to assume that any such contract between a builder and BK or BKI would require that the builder pay some fees or royalties to BK or BKI in return for the right to build boats to the Laser design.

And personally I would not be at all "amazed" if this class rule were the only thing requiring that builders continue to hold such agreements with BK and BKI. Why do you think Bruce Kirby and Global Sailing were so opposed to the rule change if it had no impact on BKI's ability to collect fees for using the Laser design and/or control who is allowed to build Lasers?
You're right, I didn't word that first para very well. And sorry for the overall tone, I was overreacting to Gouv's attempt to crucify me and 1016 others, both here and on much more violently on SA, for not sharing his moral outrage. What I meant to say was the while the old rule mandates that a builder must have a contract with BKI, the removal of that clause does not cancel any existing contract or any legal rights (if any exist) that BKI may have to royalty payments. If Kirby/BKI still owns the 'design rights' (whatever that means) as he says he does (ref: direct quotes in the original Sail-world article), then he is still entitled to royalties based on those design rights, whatever the class rules say.

GS were opposed to the rule change because they have been working for a long time towards taking over LPE's market. They have capacity through PSA to to build a lot more boats than they currently do and understandably want to use this capacity to generate large piles of cash. That's why they purchased the rights in the first place. Whether or not this would be a good thing would depend on your view of the current builder in your neck of the woods but I'm sure many in Europe would welcome it. Problem is there would be huge trauma for the class in getting from here to there, and the class might not survive.

A yes vote was not an anti-Kirby vote in any way. It was a vote to protect the class and the sailors.I don't think it's all water under the bridge though - there are a lot more plays before this game is over.
 

AlanD

Former ISAF Laser Measurer
GS were opposed to the rule change because they have been working for a long time towards taking over LPE's market. They have capacity through PSA to to build a lot more boats than they currently do and understandably want to use this capacity to generate large piles of cash. That's why they purchased the rights in the first place. Whether or not this would be a good thing would depend on your view of the current builder in your neck of the woods but I'm sure many in Europe would welcome it. Problem is there would be huge trauma for the class in getting from here to there, and the class might not survive
I'd love to see the evidence you have that GS / PSA have been working towards taking over the LPE market.
 

gouvernail

Super Opinionated and Always Correct
The newsletter says they have plenty of capacity to build boats and would like to be in certain markets, but it does not say, "We would love to shove others out of the Laser sailboat building business."

Could it be read to say, "If those deadbeats continue to hold your game hostage ...HERE WE ARE!!!"??? Yes. Certainly.
and good for them.
 

Tillerman

Member
I'd love to see the evidence you have that GS / PSA have been working towards taking over the LPE market.
One piece of evidence that Global Sailing have been working towards distributing the Laser (or a boat very like a Laser that might be called something else) in Europe is the ad they place on the Scuttlebutt Europe newsletter in August of 2010. See fourth item in Scuttlebutt Europe #2158.

The ad reads...
Global Sailing Limited
We are looking for enthusiastic and well established marine dealers to become national or multi national distributors in the European region for the
Bruce Kirby designed Olympic Sailing Dinghy
This well established brand has already attracted over 200,000 devoted sailors globally and its long term future remains extremely positive. Over 4500 new boats were produced in 2009. Further details will be available after receipt of your expression of interest.
Contact:
+61 458 800 651 kevinmccann.pte@gmail.com
The ad is very careful not to use the word "Laser" (for trademark reasons I assume) but it's clear what they are talking about.
 

redstar

New Member
I'd love to see the evidence you have that GS / PSA have been working towards taking over the LPE market.
What Eric and Tillerman said. And the containers of (slightly used) boats the PSA have been known to ship to Europe for sale.

Not saying it's all GS's fault. Just saying it's at least shared. GS definitely aren't angels in all of this.
 

Tillerman

Member
As far as I can see, nothing in this rule change will stop Global Sailing from making boats to the specifications of the Laser class rules and the Laser construction manual and then distributing them in Europe (or anywhere else in the world) if they want to. I guess they couldn't call them Lasers if they don't have rights to use the Laser trademark in those regions, but if it walks like a Laser and quacks like a Laser....

So we might see two manufacturers selling boats that are exactly like real Lasers in some regions of the world. The boats would be essentially identical so they would have to compete on price, quality or offering different options (rigging, toestraps, tillers etc.) that still fit within the Laser class rules. Would that be so terrible? I don't think so.

The only thing stopping us from racing all these boats under the rules of our association would be the class rule that requires the builder to have trademark rights (assuming that is interpreted to mean "have trademark rights to the Laser trademark in the regions in which they are selling their boats.") But we can fix that by changing the Fundamental Rule to take out the trademark requirement.

Let's do it!
 

Deimos

Member
As far as I can see, nothing in this rule change will stop Global Sailing from making boats to the specifications of the Laser class rules and the Laser construction manual and then distributing them in Europe (or anywhere else in the world) if they want to. I guess they couldn't call them Lasers if they don't have rights to use the Laser trademark in those regions, but if it walks like a Laser and quacks like a Laser....
Which then broadens the already abysmal 3rd party "knock-off" market. So not only sails, boards, masts, etc. but then hulls as well. Wonder if they will be sold as <whatever> and marked as "training hulls". As I suspected (and so many people have said), ILCA has quite probably not only failed to address the problems (given that the ILCA rules are probably irrelevant when it comes to existing contracts between "right holder" and builder), but likely made the situation worse. If I was Kirby I would be feeling pretty hacked-off with ILCA and who knows what right he has over the hull and building process. Maybe his contracts could mean he can stop the non-Aus builders immediately (injunctions take only a few days to get sorted).

Ian
 

Tillerman

Member
I think it's unfair to equate Global Sailing/ Performance Sailcraft Australia with the "already abysmal 3rd party "knock-off" market." PSA is a reputable builder of perfectly good legal Lasers. If they decide to start selling some of those boats in other regions (albeit called something other than Lasers) then we as a class have to choose whether to ignore them or approve them. If we approve those boats as legal boats to be sailed in our game then we have simultaneously increased the supply of boats, created an alternative viable source of supply, and enhanced competition. Sounds like a win-win to me.
 

AlanD

Former ISAF Laser Measurer
What Eric and Tillerman said. And the containers of (slightly used) boats the PSA have been known to ship to Europe for sale.

Not saying it's all GS's fault. Just saying it's at least shared. GS definitely aren't angels in all of this.
What was written in Scuttlebut and also the PSA website were all written whilst this dispute between GS and LP occurred, so it can hardly be claimed they have been working on this for a "long time".

As for container loads slightly 2nd hand boats, in the most part these boats were purchased in Australia, sailed in Australia by the person who'll take possession of them overseas. PSA is just organising the shipping aspect for the international who come out to Australia to train/race during our summer and want to take their boat home with them. PSA will also organise to get your boat to all the major Australian & NZ regattas, organise a coach boat etc. PSA, like the LP etc have experience in shipping new boats to their respective markets, so this isn't much different to what they currently do. International sailors have been bringing their boats home from other regions for decades except the individuals have had to organise their own shipping. It's only become an issue because currently the Australian boats are supposidely "better", but it was never an issue when the European or American boats were "better"
 

redstar

New Member
As far as I can see, nothing in this rule change will stop Global Sailing from making boats to the specifications of the Laser class rules and the Laser construction manual and then distributing them in Europe (or anywhere else in the world) if they want to. I guess they couldn't call them Lasers if they don't have rights to use the Laser trademark in those regions, but if it walks like a Laser and quacks like a Laser....
This is exactly where the class should be heading. The rule change removing the Kirby approval of builders is now hopefully gone, next step is to remove the trademark clause. Of course this is a much more difficult change. We would need to come up with a new class name and logo, which shouldn't be difficult but of course would lead to endless arguments. Then the class, the sailors, would be free to nominate builders and suppliers according to our requirements and could introduce true competition to the marketplace. Independence and autonomy, doesn't that sound wonderful?

Of course this is how the Opti class works, and people still complain about the cost there. Other problem is that the builders might not like it, and they do have a couple of votes on the World Council. They would also fight hard to protect their trademark value in the market.

It could also easily be done while still respecting any 'design rights' that may apply...
 

AlanD

Former ISAF Laser Measurer
Redstar, the strength of the class has been because it's one design with almost all the equipment coming out of a handful of suppliers. It appears you want to open up the class to who ever wants to build something, like hundreds of other classes who not surprisingly, aren't as popular as the laser class. Rather than changing our class to meet your requirements, I think maybe you should be changing classes to meet your requirements.
 

Tillerman

Member
Other problem is that the builders might not like it, and they do have a couple of votes on the World Council. They would also fight hard to protect their trademark value in the market.
I thought about that. Actually the real problem is the Advisory Council that only has 4 members - 2 real class officers and 2 builder reps. Currently there is one builder rep from GS/PSA and one from LP. The recent change to the fundamental rule only got through the Advisory Council (3 votes to 1) because the LP rep voted for it. (What a surprise!)

Now if the class wanted to approve Global Sailing as a supplier of "boats that walk like Lasers and quack like Lasers but are not called Lasers" to, say, European customers and to remove the trademark requirement so that these boats would be legal to play in our game, then my guess is that the GS rep on the Advisory Council would vote for it. And it would pass 3-1.
 

redstar

New Member
I thought about that. Actually the real problem is the Advisory Council that only has 4 members - 2 real class officers and 2 builder reps. Currently there is one builder rep from GS/PSA and one from LP. The recent change to the fundamental rule only got through the Advisory Council (3 votes to 1) because the LP rep voted for it. (What a surprise!)
That's the one I was thinking of - I was sure there was a four person panel with a 50% representation from the builders, but my memory failed me when it came to the name.

You're spot on, would just have to make the deal worth the while of at least one builder. Preferably both, no point in upsetting one or both of the builders unless its absolutely necessary. Apart from the sweet revenge, obviously!
 

Tillerman

Member
Letter from Bruce Kirby published in Scuttlebutt 3460, November 1, 2011

The Laser Class (meaning the sailors) have recently voted for a rule
change, part of which would allow the Laser Class to appoint builders,
rather than Bruce Kirby Inc, which owns the rights to the Laser design. The
official name for the Laser is the KIRBY SAILBOAT.

This vote was taken at the urging of Heini Wellmann, Laser Class president.
The notice for the voting was issued long before Kirby Inc. was able to
make arrangements to re-establish its design rights, so most of the class
were only concerned that there was no proper direction in class affairs.
Had Kirby Inc re-established its ownership of the design rights at the time
of the vote rather than on Sept. 22, 2011, the voting obviously would have
been very different. Class members were not allowed to change their vote
once it was made!

The International Sailing Federation (ISAF) must now decide whether it will
allow the class vote to stand or be disregarded. In Wellmann's proposal to
the class, he has stated erroneously that the Kirby Inc rights have expired
in Europe. These rights are based on Designer/Builder contracts, not on
copyright, and they are valid with all Laser builders - Performance
Sailcraft Europe, Laser Performance in the U.S.A., Perforrmance Sailcraft
Japan and Performance Sailcraft Australia.

The legal right for the Laser Class to interfere with these long
established builder contracts is very doubtful. And any such change in the
Class rules would not alter Kirby Inc's rights to appoint builders. So if
such a change were approved, the confusion for the Class, builders, and
200,000 sailors would be devastating.
 

Eric_R

D10 Secretary
Makes you wonder if Kirby decided to try to require the rights just because of the vote and did it just at the last minute the vote was going to happen. What prompted him to buy the rights back?
 

AlanD

Former ISAF Laser Measurer
Makes you wonder if Kirby decided to try to require the rights just because of the vote and did it just at the last minute the vote was going to happen. What prompted him to buy the rights back?
Probably because he wants to see the class prosper into the future, it's his baby so to speak. He thought he was doing the right thing selling to GS if his family weren't interested in taking it on and now he sees the moves of LP and the ILCA being as being counter-productive and tried to get things back to where they were.
 

redstar

New Member
Well that just confuses the whole issue even further. So Kirby says he does own design rights, that these are based on contracts between the designer and builders, and that valid contracts exist with all builders including LPE (which I assume is the same as the Performance Sailcraft Europe he mentions). Weren't we told that GS terminated BKI's contract with LPE? Now Kirby is saying a valid contract exists?

He then says that BKI has rights to appoint builders, i.e. enter into contracts with new builders. But if his rights are based on existing contracts, then where do these rights to appoint new builders come from?

When did the official name of the Laser become the 'Kirby Sailboat'? What does this make 'Laser'? Just a nickname? How does this relate to trademark rights?

And finally, is the change went throught, exactly how would it be devastating for the class and the sailors?

When are we going to receive an accurate, detailed, unbiased explanation of the whole situation?
 

Deimos

Member
And finally, is the change went throught, exactly how would it be devastating for the class and the sailors?
Because the agreements are based on contracts not copyright/patent. The ILCA and more importantly their legal advisors admitted that they do not know what those contracts are. So, suppose they were a contract saying that LPE would pay the "rights holder" a fee for every hull built and suppose that LPE unilaterally stopped paying, breaking the contract, then "right holder" could take out an injunction stopping all production by LPE whilst they took the case to court - so no hulls being built outside australia and region ! GS were being very tolerant whilst trying to sort things out but ILCA's action seems to have predictably "pissed-off" the current "rights holder" so they may be a lot less tolerant; and may act straight away!


When are we going to receive an accurate, detailed, unbiased explanation of the whole situation?
Even though the ILCA is an Association by the members, for the members, the current ILCA leadership seem totally unmotivated to provide any additional information. Even when such information was repeatedly sought before the vote - details to allow people to make an informed decision, nothing was forthcoming. So, given the way the ILCA seems to operate, I would not expect any explanation; ever. For me that is not how an organisation should work. Even public companies (with shareholders) have more accountability that the current ILCA leadership seems to consider appropriate. In every other association I have ever been a member of, the leadership is more accountable and would ahve been thrown out long ago for behaving like the ILCA seems to be doing. But maybe things are different in the US (although even News International are begining to discover the meaning of words like "accountability", ...). For example, the ILCA web site states "Discussions on the different web forums during the 6 months voting period showed that there were some misunderstandings on certain element of the proposed rule change. These were attempted to be clarified by the ILCA President with a statement of 19 September 2011". So they recognised there were questions and failed to provide any info until just a few days before voting finished (i.e. when many will have decided and far too late for most people to notice the statement and they refused to allow people to change their vote). If they recognised people needed more info they should have published that info in a more timely matter or extended the voting deadline allowing people to change their vote. The last minute info suggests stuff that one cannot suggest on a public forum.

This incident has convinced me that it is not the organisation for me to be a member of any more so I will not be renewing.

Ian
 

Old Dude

Member
I too wish there could have been more information coming from ICLA. While I get they likely did not want to speculate and are not privy to what is in these builder contracts (and therefore could not share what they do not know), it does seem like there had to have been more they could do to give membership more information.

That said I think a vote of yes in this case is pretty easy and I am surprised at the outrage above. Even BK's note in Scuttlebutt if anything convinces me further that a yes vote is the correct one.

There has been a lot of snow thrown about but as best I can tell BK has sold the trademark (at least in select regions) to LPE. There are no patents and so the basis of the buolders contracts (and here we are all left to speculate) must be the class rule that essentially said you need BK's OK. What is not clear, at least to me is what that class rule was based on? Other than wanting to be nice to the designer of the boat - loyalty?? - what is the basis for that. Nobody, not BK or ICLA has eversaid so far as I can tell. It can't be IP because there is none. It can't be trademark because BK sold it (in select regions). So why the payday? Absent a good reason, I say ditch the rule.

I would actually like to see the class try to acquire the trademark so we could have multiple builders competeing for the business of building Lasers and if BK and/or LPE or other current holders will not sell at a fair price, then lets call our boats (all of which would still have to meet the class spec) something other than Laser or Kirby Sailboats as BK makes claim to in the Scuttlebutt letter.

Paint me with the Tillerman brush. Lets modify rules to create a situation where we can get more buolders competeing for the business which should lower prices and bring in more sailors. If the Intensity sail experience proves anything its that these producs can be made for far less money while still meeting the class spec but when they don't need the Laser badge on them. Seems like a mightly expensive badge and this vote seems like a step towards changing that for the better.

So, no, its not "stuff it Kirby." Maybe its "get your hand out of my pocket."
 

torrid

Just sailing
Because the agreements are based on contracts not copyright/patent. The ILCA and more importantly their legal advisors admitted that they do not know what those contracts are. So, suppose they were a contract saying that LPE would pay the "rights holder" a fee for every hull built and suppose that LPE unilaterally stopped paying, breaking the contract, then "right holder" could take out an injunction stopping all production by LPE whilst they took the case to court - so no hulls being built outside australia and region ! GS were being very tolerant whilst trying to sort things out but ILCA's action seems to have predictably "pissed-off" the current "rights holder" so they may be a lot less tolerant; and may act straight away!

Even though the ILCA is an Association by the members, for the members, the current ILCA leadership seem totally unmotivated to provide any additional information. Even when such information was repeatedly sought before the vote - details to allow people to make an informed decision, nothing was forthcoming. So, given the way the ILCA seems to operate, I would not expect any explanation; ever. For me that is not how an organisation should work. Even public companies (with shareholders) have more accountability that the current ILCA leadership seems to consider appropriate. In every other association I have ever been a member of, the leadership is more accountable and would ahve been thrown out long ago for behaving like the ILCA seems to be doing. But maybe things are different in the US (although even News International are begining to discover the meaning of words like "accountability", ...). For example, the ILCA web site states "Discussions on the different web forums during the 6 months voting period showed that there were some misunderstandings on certain element of the proposed rule change. These were attempted to be clarified by the ILCA President with a statement of 19 September 2011". So they recognised there were questions and failed to provide any info until just a few days before voting finished (i.e. when many will have decided and far too late for most people to notice the statement and they refused to allow people to change their vote). If they recognised people needed more info they should have published that info in a more timely matter or extended the voting deadline allowing people to change their vote. The last minute info suggests stuff that one cannot suggest on a public forum.

This incident has convinced me that it is not the organisation for me to be a member of any more so I will not be renewing.

Ian
I don't think 100% transparency is practical, especially in an organization like the ILCA that has to deal with many parties in multiple countries. The leadership needs some ability to negotiate among the various parties in confidence. The problem is we have 0% transparency. This is where the class management has failed. They dropped a bomb on us with an incomplete explanation and very poor follow-up communication. A good leader knows just how much information to release and when.
 

Tillerman

Member
When this whole debacle started, ILCA claimed that Global Sailing were threatening to form a new class association for a "Kirby Sailboat." Now Bruce Kirby has announced that the official name for the Laser is "Kirby Sailboat." What makes me think that there is another shoe to drop here?

By the way, I just checked and the domain names kirbysailboat.org and kirbysailboat.com are still available if anybody should happen to need them.
 

Tillerman

Member
Sail-World.com has just published another article on this topic. As well as rehashing a lot of stuff that has already been covered on this thread and other similar threads on this forum it says..

It seems there is a serious commercial disagreement between two large Laser builders and Kirby, who alleges he is owed significant amounts of money by those two groups.

The Laser Class World Council is scheduled to meet this coming weekend and it appears there is some discomfort amongst the Council members, over the possibility that the pre-amble copy was not factual, as Bruce Kirby alleges and this casts doubt on the validity of the vote.

One can imagine that this mess might be ringing alarm bells at ISAF. It has been also been alleged by some influential members of the ILCA, not in favour of this rule change, that ISAF has previously let it be known that this change was unlikely to be ratified by ISAF.

The outcome of the ILCA World Council meeting will be most interesting.
 

gouvernail

Super Opinionated and Always Correct
Maybe so ..But Wednesday evening we will be loading lasers on the five boat trailer so we can go to the Wurstfest regatta. I suggest we all quit posting here for a while and go sailing.
 

jeffers

Active Member
Maybe so ..But Wednesday evening we will be loading lasers on the five boat trailer so we can go to the Wurstfest regatta. I suggest we all quit posting here for a while and go sailing.
That has got to be one of the best posts on this subject in a long time....except I live in the UK so will have to settle for some club racing instead...
 

gouvernail

Super Opinionated and Always Correct
If I could I would remove all my previous comments. ( except the boat loading one...the five boat trailer has four tied on it and is headed to the regatta this weekend)
I have been given information by multiple sources who should each know EXACTLY what has transpired and why and EXACTLY what all of it means to the game and to the builders builders, legally, morally, historically, and etc.
Suffice it to say, I have been told at least four entirely conflicting stories by individuals who have the above described "should be aware" knowledge and as I am not in a position to confidantly point fingers at any of the four and say "you are misleading us by telling less than the entire truth" I no longer feel obligated to support or oppose any of the "sides" in this mess.
As I see it the factors include, pride, greed, entitlement, loyalty, ownership, misimpresions, leverage, and in our case ignorance and confusion.

That which I thougth was going on, that which I currently believe is going on, and that which is actually going on are almost certainly three different scenarios.
 
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