Pathfinder RPG Paizo Copyright Issues at Obsidian Portal? - Page 9





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  1. #81
    Quote Originally Posted by MrGrenadine View Post
    You recall several folks berating WotC that are in this thread posting supportive comments about Paizo?

    Because that would be weird. If that was happening.
    You have missed the point. You should also probably heed the rest of Umbran's post.

 

  • #82
    Actually, no, Dannager. Not going to rise to your bait. Happy gaming to you.
    Last edited by MrGrenadine; Thursday, 7th July, 2011 at 02:35 AM.
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  • #83
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    More power to Paizo. This is their living, after all. And they have been remarkably low-key about the whole thing. I see no use of 'unnecessary force', just a firm reminder to someone who stepped over the line.

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  • #84
    Quote Originally Posted by Morrus View Post
    I'm confused. Is this addressed to specific people? Presumably you are "pissed" at certain people in this thread who didn't say "Burn the evil corp" but did say that in a similar WotC-related thread?

    Does such a creature exist?

    I can certainly understand why you'd think such a person was hypocritical - enough to use big fonts and caps, no less! - but I'm not personally aware of any such person. But you may have been tracking these individuals more closely than I.
    And some of us Paizo fans have even defended WotC on some of these issues.

    I know, since I am one of them.

    IP needs to be defended, the OGL, and to a lesser extent the GSL, give a safe harbor, but there are still rules governing IP - the use of images is specifically against the stated OGL content of nearly every work.

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  • #85
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    I'll admit I defended Pazio here, and criticized WotC when they sent a C&D letter about Masterplan's use of the Compendium.

    Mainly because Masterplan added value to the D&DI product, making it more desirable to have an account. Similarly I criticized them when they remove the sale of PDF, since PDFs are still available illegally, just not legally any more.

    Where as using images of the Item Cards, reduces the value of the Item Card product, as all that product is, is the images. You give them away the product has no value.

    These are two completely different cases, so you can expect different reactions. I believe in protecting your business, in some cases this is done by protecting your IP in other cases protecting your IP actually harms your business.

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  • #86
    Quote Originally Posted by Dannyalcatraz View Post
    Yes.

    And my point stands: as long as the posted clips are of short enough length to be deemed to not harm the commercial viability of the product "reviewed", there will be no problem. The longer the clip you post, the more secrets you reveal, the more likely you are to find yourself outside the safe harbor of "Fair Use."
    ...
    Strangely, for me, watching someone else playing a game is not nearly the same as playing it myself...

    Neither is reading the 'Storyhour' here is the same as playing and actual RPG.

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  • #87
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    Quote Originally Posted by guccibag View Post
    <spam spam spam spam spam spam spam spam spammity SPAM>
    Reported.
    Last edited by Dannyalcatraz; Thursday, 7th July, 2011 at 04:24 PM.
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  • #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by AeroDm View Post
    The problem, though, is that it is damn hard for a normal person to defend themselves. The safe harbor is an affirmative defense, which means you have to understand and argue it--that costs money.
    Yes.

    But it costs the IP holder money to file the claim as well. And there is the fact that the "minion lawyer" (mentioned below) draws an annual income from the company if he is an employee or on retainer- meaning he gets paid whether he wins a dozen lawsuits or never even sends a C&D letter.

    Protecting IP is NOT cheap.

    And lets not forget, not every IP holder is a big company. A lot is held by individuals (like me, actually- music, sculptures, paintings, commercial designs and a book in progress). And its no cheaper for an individual to protect his IP than it is for a big company. Actually, it is probably more expensive on a case by case basis. (Ask Ani DiFranco how much it costs her to protect her own private record label from pirates.)

    With Bill S978, the penalties go beyond cash and become felonies. Felonies. All the copyright owner (or, with S978, the government) has to do is tell a minion lawyer to file a complaint and the alleged infringer is now tied up for months defending themselves. Who is going to ever take on that risk to review a product?
    Lots of people do and will continue to do so. Most of them will have some kind of legitimate point. Most persons citing a Constitutional safe harbor legitimately- IOW, not just trying to justify their actions, but genuinely engaging in protected forms like a review or satire- win.

    Now here's the thing: if your defense is legit, and found to be so, you can actually get court costs. IOW, if your use of someone else's IP is deemed to be Constitutionally protected, your court costs & legal fees get paid by the other side. Its a double edged sword, though. If the Court thinks your use was NOT protected, and that the assertions in your defense were frivolous (IOW, the Court thinks you wasted their time because you knew you were wrong and didn't settle out of court), YOU can be ordered to pay the court costs & fees of the IP holder. That is on top of the penalties the Court finds justified.

    Still, the Gov't is not going to pursue people on its own motion unless it is after people infringing on its own IP. The IP holder HAS to be involved.

    Quote Originally Posted by fuzzlewump View Post
    Let's Plays are videos of full playthroughs of a game from beginning to end. It's generally not truncated and shows the entire game completely.
    Well, that kind of Let's Play would genuinely be in trouble. Its already illegal as is: it is a reviewer's Constitutional right to post part of a reviewed piece, but not the whole thing.

    What people still don't understand is that violation of Copyright law already can be a criminal offense under:

    Title 17 Chapter 5 506
    1) In general. — Any person who willfully infringes a copyright shall be punished as provided under section 2319 of title 18, if the infringement was committed —

    <snip>

    (C) by the distribution of a work being prepared for commercial distribution, by making it available on a computer network accessible to members of the public, if such person knew or should have known that the work was intended for commercial distribution.
    (A criminal action under this section has to be initiated within 5 years of the offending act.)

    The new bill just ups the penalty, and not by much: United States Code: Title 18,2319. Criminal infringement of a copyright | LII / Legal Information Institute

    So here's the takeaway: Odds are pretty good that the computer game companies are not going to do a damn thing about Let's Plays just because of this new bill. The reason is that they aren't doing anything about them right now under current law, which only differs from the proposed bill in severity of punishment.

    And does Blizzard really care if you go to jail for 3 years (current law) or 5 years (proposed law)? I don't think so. If they DID care, they'd go after you NOW, then get you again for another offense and get you for 6-10 years (current law) as a repeat offender.
    Last edited by Dannyalcatraz; Thursday, 7th July, 2011 at 10:49 AM.
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  • #89
    Every rpg company has to decide for itself how to handle ip issues like this. But my feeling is it is generally unwise for rpg companies to issue Cease and desist letters in these sort of cases. This is a small industry and really rpg customers are like a community. Bad feelings spread quickly. Not saying they don't have the right to protect their ip. Just think the fallout doesn't balance out the benefits long term.
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  • #90
    Quote Originally Posted by TheAuldGrump View Post
    And some of us Paizo fans have even defended WotC on some of these issues.

    I know, since I am one of them.

    IP needs to be defended, the OGL, and to a lesser extent the GSL, give a safe harbor, but there are still rules governing IP - the use of images is specifically against the stated OGL content of nearly every work.

    The Auld Grump
    True, and that's one of the reasons not to use the OGL, GSL, or Community Use Policy in certain circumstances. Your use can be legal without using those licenses. Those licenses let you use material, and require you not use material, in very specific ways- often more generous than you would ordinarily be able to do yourself, but usually with strings attached. For example, the OGL doesn't let you indicate compatibility with any other system using the trademarks of that system. If you believe your use is not infringing without the OGL, there's not a good reason to use it- except the worry of hassle or some type of legal action, which can be compelling in their own rights.

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