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RE: Building Codes Online?

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James,
If charging professionals for the codes forces development costs back
into organizations like AISC and Aci, then provide them with additional
tax benefits that serve the same purpose. 
Nobody in our society except for those on Welfare get a free ride. We
pay for it out of pocket or in our taxes or increases in housing prices
or insurance costs. I don't understand how so many can argue about
whether government or private industry should pay the prices when the
end user (homebuyer) ultimately absorbs the cost. The solution is to
insure the distribution of costs to the masses through fees and taxes
and not by penalizing the profits of those who design the buildings.
In the case of low-rise design, our profit margins are not high enough
to absorb all of the tools and resources we are required to use. Most of
us only use a chapter or two - rarely the entire code. 
There is enough profits in home sales today (verses say five years ago)
based on the free-enterprise system that does not price homes by
materials but by the value of the land it sits on. Let this system
absorb the cost since these resources are used to design structures on
these properties. The fee's paid for these are deductible costs
(granted, they are for us as well, but the deduction is less affordable
as a percentage of our gross receipts as it would be to a land buyer).

Dennis

-----Original Message-----
From: Lutz, James [mailto:JLUTZ(--nospam--at)earthtech.com] 
Sent: Monday, October 07, 2002 10:37 AM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org
Subject: RE: Building Codes Online?


Seems to me the government (namely the taxpayers) ought to be
subsidizing the building code processes somehow. At the end of the day,
the code writing organizations are doing the government's work for it,
and the legislatures and municipalities just adopt these things by
reference, saving themselves the cost and grief of having to develop and
maintain building codes of their own. The ultimate purpose of these
codes is to become law, which is a government function. 

I'm not saying government would do a better job than the current model
code organizations, just that it is getting a free ride. The only
argument I can see for the current funding model is that by forcing the
cost of code development onto the backs of organizations like AISC and
ACI, and the people who have to buy the code publications, it does tend
to focus the cost on the construction sector, and ultimately property
developers, which is arguably where it belongs.

-----Original Message-----
From: Gerard Madden, PE [mailto:gmadden(--nospam--at)attbi.com]
Sent: Monday, October 07, 2002 9:56 AM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org
Subject: RE: Building Codes Online?


No one is going to pay. Keep charging to cover the costs-this is the
price of doing business for engineers. Yeah it can add up in costs, but
they are one time costs every few years and the prices are still
reasonable. I would allow exceptions to those publishing teaching text
books to re-print portions of the code to help students in college and
allow professors to make and distribute copies of relevant code sections
to establish design criteria.

-gerard
Santa Clara, CA


-----Original Message-----
From: Yousefi, Ben [mailto:Ben.Yousefi(--nospam--at)ci.sj.ca.us] 
Sent: Monday, October 07, 2002 9:46 AM
To: 'seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org'
Subject: RE: Building Codes Online?

I just have one question for whoever is favor of this proposal. The code
development process is a very expensive endeavor. The cost includes
accommodations for the people involved, the meetings and the expenses
associated with the coordination that has to happen to put the whole
thing together. Who is going to pay for this if the code is given away
for free?

Ben Yousefi, SE
san Jose, CA

-----Original Message-----
From: Cratylus Consulting Group [mailto:cratylus(--nospam--at)earthlink.net]
Sent: Sunday, October 06, 2002 12:59 PM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org
Subject: Re: Building Codes Online?


I have not heard a thing about this appellate decision, or of the
content of the Veeck web site. However, I can think of several issues to
support such a legal analysis:
1) Why would you bother to protect a copyright or 'intellectual' product
that is obsolete in three years?,
2) How can anyone profit (financially and to ICBO's/SBCCI's/BOCA's
detriment) by
using and liberally publishing code provisions?,
3) To what extent can the broad and liberal dissemination of public and
life safety information harm these publishers? (it could only enhance
the public interest I would think),
4) Could anyone near the profit these publishers extract from the three
year code cycle! For crying out loud, this 3 year cycle gives them new
work-product to market so quickly - only a fool would attempt to
plagiarize it for commercial purposes!

Steven A.
Los Angeles


HBAP(--nospam--at)aol.com wrote:

> Anyone notice the "News Brief" in the September issue of Building
Design &
> Construction under the title "Court decision threatens code
developers'
> copyrights"? It reports (see page 11) that Texas retiree Peter Veeck
posted
> portions of their locally adopted building code on his Website.
Predictably
> it promptly went to court, with SBCCI, NFPA, ANSI, and others jumping 
> (probably frantically) into the fray. The news brief stated that the
Fifth
> Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a lower courts ruling in Veeck's favor
that
> once a copyrighted code was adopted by a governmental jurisdiction is
was
in
> public domain and therefore not subject to copyright protection. You
can
read
> an excerpt at www.bdcmag.com under "Legal Briefs". However, go to
Google
and
> type in "Peter Veeck" and numerous references would indicate that he
DID
NOT
> prevail. Having access to building codes online would obviously
devastate
> revenue from code publishers, and be vigorously resisted, but be a
boon
for
> the rest of us, and is probably inevitable given the likes of Veeck..
>
> Hugh Brooks, SE
> Retain Pro Software
>
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