model ownership

I haven't quite figured out why everyone worries about "who owns the model". This (much like when people think that BIM is a software!) is one of my BIM pet peeves.

Normally, I don't think about this at all; for me, it's a non-issue. However, this came up today at a meeting with a non-BIM architect who is interested in implementing.

If anyone "owns" the model, it's the building (therefore, the owner). As I've stated on many occasions, I believe that all of the project participants should be able to extract information as well as add information to the model. I don't understand the concern that some have about collaborating and sharing which relates to what I think should be the goal of the team.

I think my new answer to this question will be: who owns the construction documents?


Bill said...

Good Question/Concern: ...everyone worries about "who owns the model"

Bad Answer: As an architect, liability insurance and the policies are insane. Insane, meaning the effect it has on the architect - pushes the sole practioner and small firms to not carry or not survive. This may be why you are noticing resistance as the "norm".

As for your other question, "Who owns the CD's". I like to put my initials on the drawings. I like the idea that my initials are BS. Seriously, I like the idea about the Owner/Client, owning the model. Future contracts will be interesting…

As usual, Laura you are right on top of the current issues and not affraid to ask.

Looking forward to reading your future experiences, please keep them coming!



Robert said...

My concern about "ownership" does not relate to ownership in the traditional sense of the AEC industy. Rather there are two issues of Intellectual Property (IP) that I see, that need to be resolved.

The first is an issue that has already been dealt with in the courts, however with the advent of sharing more data, raises its head yet again. That is, who owns the design (and or portions of the design). In this case courts have traditionaly ruled in favor of the architects. That is, an architect provides a set of docuemts as to how to design a specific building, and while the owner has "purchased" the documents, for the owner's contractor to use, this does not (unless there are other agreements in place) give the owner or the contractor the righ to build the building again, or make use of unique design elements in another building. The conern with BIM is that by providing a very detailed model, it gives unscroupulous people a chance to steal this IP.

The other IP concern is that in the process of an architect (or whomever) developing a BIM, they will most likely create unique or custom "pieces" the reflect time and development on the part of the "desinger". This is IP, these are "things" that allow the designer to either design more quickly, or better convey the design intent (as opposed to using whatever might be the default content that comes with your BIM software of choice). By fully sharing a BIM the designer puts this IP at risk, as people then have the ability to copy and re-use custom content, which the desinger developed, and for which they deserve compensation and recgonition. Unless the designer is in posistion to choose to share custom content or not...

Hope this makes some sense,