Also, [MENTION=336]D'karr[/MENTION]: The name of a mechanic may actually be copyrightable. It's a bit of a legal grey area, as I understand it (standard disclaimer, IANAL, etc.) Words like "card" and "dice," which refer to implements, cannot be copyrighted. And certain terms that have been in use by too many other companies (like "HP," "experience," "level," etc.) can't either. But something pretty specific, e.g. "Healing Surge," may be copyrightable...and given the toeing-the-legal-limits nature of most "cloning" projects, it's usually considered unwise to do anything that even might be a problem.
Having seen discussions with you on multiple topics involving 4e I have respect for your opinion. I don't mean to sound rude or disrespectful so please forgive me if it sounds that way. Even though what you say might be in some specific context applicable, it does not invalidate what I had already said, "game mechanics are not copyrightable". Since you are not a lawyer, I'd rather take my legal advice from an actual copyright lawyer. There might be an entire rabbit hole of exceptions, and adjunct discussions dealing with the subject, but the basic premise still stands. Legal discussions in internet forums seem to always devolve to the "legality" or "ethicality" of something with no real legal background except what someone opines about the subject or has read in an internet forum.
I will leave it at this. I prefer not to get into legal arguments about things that my lawyer is actually better suited to handle. The discussion would be pointless since neither you nor I are lawyers, but the weight of my lawyer's actual legal advice has much more weight than opinions on the internet. Anyone taking legal advice from an internet forum is a fool that deserves whatever they get since you really get what you paid for. The adage of "opinions" is very apt to these type of discussions. I don't take my car to be repaired by my dentist, and I don't go looking for legal advice on internet forums.
Having said all that, take it as a definite that I still respect your opinions and insight into many things dealing with gaming and 4e in particular. In many threads that I've seen your postings I usually find myself agreeing with your opinions as they are well reasoned and insightful.