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Old 05-16-2002, 01:54 AM   #21
Mason
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (Alastair @ May 15 2002,1:26 pm)
Quote:
Originally Posted by (Mason @ May 15 2002,11:13 am)
Your license should aim to be short and concise.
As a counterpoint to the developping contract, I submit a short and simple license proposal (trust me for going against the grain from time to time )

1. BUILDER grants MUD a non-exclusive and non-revokable right to use and modify his work ("areas").
2. Rights to distribute BUILDER areas in any way are specifically excluded without BUILDER's explicit consent.
3. Rights to modify areas are not limited. However, modification does not impact BUILDER's copyright.
4. In case MUD has a unique and original theme, areas are deemed derivative work. BUILDER may not distribute areas without the original copyright owner's explicit permission.
5. Transfer of the rights granted by this license to another MUD is only possible if it can be clearly established that it is the only successor MUD to the original licensee MUD. The MUD administrator overseeing the transfer is to inform BUILDER of this change. In any case, the transfer mandates the deletion of the areas from the original licensee MUD.
6. These rights are subject to MUD crediting BUILDER's contribution.

Short and concise, I'd say. Did I leave anything out?
grant the license to the owner. the owner is an ascertainable person and therefore is primarily responsible for conforming to the agreement. You say "non-exclusive." Don't you mean exclusive? In that the builder will only grant the area to that particular owner? Otherwise, if non-exclusive, it seems to suggest the builder can give the area to many people. also, who's right is non-revokable? if the license is provided without consideration it is not a promise and is therefore very revokable. maybe a better formulation would be:

BUILDER grants to OWNER a right to use this work for the MUD known as (MUDNAME). OWNER shall have the right to modify said work to conform with the MUD. OWNER shall not have the right to transfer said work to any other MUD other than the one indicated above without the express permission of the BUILDER.

This is a good starting point. after this, i suppose you could throw in whatever clauses you want. however, try not to get too confusing and make sure you are consistent with builders, owners, and muds.

if you have any questions, or would like any further help, let me know.
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Old 05-16-2002, 04:13 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (Mason @ May 16 2002,07:54 am)
You say "non-exclusive."  Don't you mean exclusive?  In that the builder will only grant the area to that particular owner?  Otherwise, if non-exclusive, it seems to suggest the builder can give the area to many people.
I used non-exclusive in purpose. IIRC, exclusive grants demand a signed document. I was also thinking about builders working on a mostly stock MUD or one themed around a book or a movie.
IMHO, the builder, as the IP owner, keeps the right to do whatever he wants with his areas - unless it is subject to the MUD's theme's copyright. This doesn't need to mean that he will distribute it widely, just that he could if he so chose.

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also, who's right is non-revokable?
The right to use and modify. This is to prevent situation where BUILDER leaves on bad terms and demand area removal.
Perhaps a blurb about "breach of any license terms voids the whole license" or whatever would be needed.

Your other points are duly noted, thank you for the advice.

[edited because speeling is hard]
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Old 05-31-2002, 04:36 AM   #23
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I am not replying as much as putting in my wishlist. This is because I am both an administrator and a former head builder. I tried to make it as simple as possible. Debate it, tell me why I am right or wrong, ciao!

1. It is the builder's choice on how to use the area, be it incomplete or complete, on the MUD in which the area is created. This is provided there is no underlying agreement with the MUD owner in advance or otherwise.

2. Builders can make an agreement with a MUD owner to make the area exclusive to the MUD.

3. Builders can make an agreement with a codebase developer to release the area as part of a codebase release.

4. Builders can give permission to others to use an area, provided it is not in breech of an exclusive use agreement.

5. Builders should always be given a copy of thier area at anytime they request a copy. Be it before, during or after construction. This is limited if there is later modifications to the area via other parties.

6. Builders have the right to grant the MUD or single staff members to modify an area. However, if an area is later modified once the builder has "quit or retired" from the MUD, the builder must aquire permission from the contributing builder's and the MUD owner before getting a copy.

7. A single room or help file in each area should contain information about the author and how to reach them. This will also help weed out copies that are immorally distributed.

8. At no time can the builder room or help file information be altered or removed, however contributors can add to the information. It is suggested the name of the originating MUD also be listed incase the builder can not be found.

9. Builders must allow the owner of the MUD in which an area was built to retain copy for MUD use only.

10. MUD owners have the right to a copy of each area made on the MUD. They get to only use the area on the MUD in which the area was created. No releasing the area by itself or seperately without the builder's permission. If a MUD's name is changed, but still owned by the owner at the time of the area's creation, then the area can remain on the MUD.

11. If an area is released with the builder's approval, the builder gives up most of thier rights to the area and how it is used. However, the builder reserves the right to challenge a MUD to ensure the credits were kept in tact.

I may add more later, but I think this is the big jist of it. Punishment it just a matter of how the area's creator wishes to go upon it. Something simular and that is multi-purpose should be used for code snippets as well.
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Old 06-17-2002, 06:41 PM   #24
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All of this has good meaning when referring to one MUD of course, but what kind of trouble will you get into when you're trying to create a new code base? For instance, Rivers of MUD had a large collection of friends (if I remember right) who put out ROM originally, so the issue of contracts wasn't really necessary. But what about derivatives of those code bases, with completely new areas, from builders who aren't close buddies IRL to the coders?

The thing is, at that point there HAS to be distribution of areas, because otherwise you get some code and nothing else with someone else's cool new code base. I'm actually planning on something along those lines, but in the end I'm going to end up with a room or two that I didn't create, that I want to put into my distributed packet. Will I need individual, specific agreements at that point, or can I just ignore the whole thing and deal with it if/when it comes up?

The other point is....if someone breaks the rules, what will happen? I mean theoretically you could probably get into court about it and sue someone...but would you? Assuming the judge has enough intelligence and computer savvy to know about text-based games, would they care? Would anything of this sort actually hold merit in court, and would successful prosecution of this kind of contract yield anything worthwhile?

I understand the need for caution here, but this is a community based on contributions of imagination, creativity, and development of the "perfect" game. So should we worry so much about the times when we quibble, or should we just let it go, roll with the punches, and move on?

Just a few questions that arose while I was reading this thread. Cheers.

-Visko
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Old 06-22-2002, 12:13 AM   #25
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I totally understand your point Visko and in a lot of ways you are correct. There is really no way to resolve this issue without signatures, notary and a bunch of totally technical jargon being put into print and validated by a lawsuit filed with a judgement issued.

Perhaps the best value is to establish a Mu* wide standard that is universally accepted as the moral norm regardless of age, signatures or ever getting to a lawsuit stage.

We, as a group, have some power in acceptance or denial of the validity of a Mu* as evidenced by the 'License Wars' of recent date. We can apply them to this situation also.

I certainly don't think I can come up with an airtight, binding agreement for our particular situation and I'm betting Matt Becker can't either. There are way too many variables and issues to dispute when push comes to shove in a courtroom. I DO believe we can create a Mu* wide policy of accepted behavior in a responsible, advertised Mu*.

The benefits to owners and builders is just too great to ignore.
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Old 08-29-2002, 11:29 AM   #26
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Old 08-30-2002, 02:15 AM   #27
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hehe, forgive me if I'm being stupid, but in those list of rules, it should be stated plainly that the writings of the Builder are under the law of playgerism (spelling?). Yet, the builder gives the administration at such and such MUD that they have permission to use it at a public view.

Not sure if it's in there. I'm stupid and young, so I don't understand half the words in there anywho
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Old 08-30-2002, 10:45 AM   #28
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Originally Posted by (Ntanel @ May 31 2002,02:36 am)
1. It is the builder's choice on how to use the area, be it incomplete or complete, on the MUD in which the area is created.  This is provided there is no underlying agreement with the MUD owner in advance or otherwise.
I'm glad you brought this point up, Ntanel.  One of the problems I have seen happen on a couple MU**s is a builder either leaving before an area is put in or before an area is completed and the administrators of the mud going ahead with putting the area in.

The builder absolutely should retain the rights to the use of the area up until the area is formally put into the mud.  I know some admin feel they should have total ownership of the area from the moment it is started because it is their money paying for the hosting of the mud, their code being used (sometimes), etc.  However, if I write a novel on a computer borrowed, but not purchased, from another person, the other person does not retain the rights to my novel.

With regards to credit, there is a very unpleasant trend starting on a few ROM based muds to remove credit on the areas list and put "Staff", justification being that they have had mob balancers and editors work on the area.  I have walked into stock areas that were renamed and listed with builders as "Staff."  I have also seen this done with areas that were built for one MU** when the builder has departed.  I think using the most specific language possible as to what credit is, who should get credit, and where credit should be placed is very important.

The concern noted earlier about how any of this matters, as few if any builders will take someone to court over the misuse of their areas is a good thing to mention.  I have never heard a builder worry about having done something they could be sued for (perhaps I don't know the builders out there doing bad stuff though).  However, administrators tend to recognize the risks they assume when running a game, be it from minors cybering, builders issues, or other things.  A builders contract that is constructed with very clear guidelines for the owner of the MU** is going to be adhered to more than one that focuses on the builders guidelines, simply due to admin knowing their responsibilities and taking them more seriously.

Last but not least, a few folks have mentioned the need for a community wide recognized basic contract for builders.  I think this is absolutely vital, though I do not know how it can become something most MU**s will use.  Brand new builders do not always realize what they are getting into.  They agree to terms that give them few to no rights because they are either unaware of the potential problems down the line or unaware of how many rights they should have.  If something happens to cause them concern, they feel they have no rights to stand on because the administration has told them and had them agree to terms that were unfair to begin with.  How you can insure a new builder knows what rights they should have, I'm not really sure on.  But it is something that needs to be done.

Little side point:  Things like comprehensive newbie guide books, developing new classes/races/etc. in concept and purpose, but not coding them, should be considered too.  I would like to see all MU**s out there error on the side of giving credit for too many things instead of the reverse.  It does not hurt the game in anyway to show how many willing, dedicated, and creative staff have worked to make it a great place.

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Old 09-02-2002, 05:50 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (Ntanel @ May 31 2002,10:36 am)
1. It is the builder's choice on how to use the area, be it incomplete or complete, on the MUD in which the area is created.  This is provided there is no underlying agreement with the MUD owner in advance or otherwise.
Well, I think it should be a joint choice about using the area. The owner will certainly have the right to reject an area

Also, this opens up the dreaded "hostage" situation. If a builder leaves on bad terms, he shouldn't be allowed to demand removal of his areas. In other terms, the builder should grant the Owner a non-exclusive but non-revokable right to use and modify areas for that particuliar MUD.

Quote:
Originally Posted by
2. Builders can make an agreement with a MUD owner to make the area exclusive to the MUD.
I think this is rather the reverse: it's the owner's interest for exclusivity, after all. But I'm nitpicking.

Quote:
Originally Posted by
6. Builders have the right to grant the MUD or single staff members to modify an area.
Whether implicit or explicit, the MUD should always have the right to modify an area. This goes with the obligation to keep original credits, though.
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Old 09-03-2002, 04:58 AM   #30
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Alastair wrote:
Whether implicit or explicit, the MUD should always have the right to modify an area.
In terms of fixing balance issues and making spelling/grammar corrections, I agree. However when it comes to the actual creative content, I'm not entirely convinced. The area represents the creative work of a builder - by making changes which aren't theirs and accrediting those changes to the builder, you could well be doing the builder a misservice.

One of the main reasons for this sort of agreement is to prevent the builder from demanding their work is removed. That's fair enough - often a builder will leave under unpleasant circumstances - but it can also work the other way around. Imagine a childish or vindictive mud administrator who decided to add rape scenes, references to pedophilia, necrophilia, beastiality, etc, to an area - an area which was accredited to the builder. On a less vindictive line of thought, imagine the well-meaning (yet incompetent at building) administrator who decides to expand on an existing area, creating poor quality work which is once again accredited to the original builder. In both cases, the administrator could seriously damage the reputation of the builder simply through the "right" to modify the work.

In these cases it might be possible to have some clause in the agreement in which the builder can demand a visible comment is placed somewhere, stating something along the lines of "this is a modified version of the original area by X. To see the original, go here..."

However there are still the cases of mud administrators who deliberately use the area as a means to attack and defame the builder. I've had this happen to me before, so believe me, it happens. Here's a little story for you.

Most people know about how the original God Wars was leaked out, and how I created God Wars Deluxe to compete with it. What perhaps isn't so well known is that when I gave out copies of the Deluxe code, I informed each mud owner that as soon as the code became "leaked" to the public, I would release it to the public - and thus they would all lose their advantage over the other God Wars muds. It was a bit of an experiment, and proved quite interesting.

Well, when the code was finally leaked out publically, I followed up on my promise and released it myself. One of the people who I had originally given a distribution to decided that that meant they no longer had to follow the license, so they stripped my name off the front screen, removed my name from the internal credits, and replaced my name with theirs in the credits of the GW-specific area files.

Of course, being a TMC auditor it wasn't long before I discovered this, and so I audited them and reported the findings back to Icculus. He spoke to the owner, who - after a brief struggle - put back the internal credits and recredited most of the area files. But still no login credits.

After I once again pointed out the license violation (and bare in mind that I had an archived email from the mud owner in which they included the full license and a statement at the bottom saying "I agree"), the following was placed in their login sequence:

God Wars was created by KaVir, the other 95% of the code was written by various *MUD NAME* Coders past and present, see 'help code' for more info.

While the "code" help file contained the following:

CODE
Original Godwars Deluxe code created by KaViR (Richard Woolcock)

Code has been debugged, improved and fixxed by the *CODER NAME* Better-at-coding Team Altho it was one hell of a job, we managed to track down, fix and improve all that #### KaViR has distributed, also known amongst insiders as "SuckWars Not-so-Deluxe". We also have added things KaViR never has dreamt possible. But then again, what could one expect from someone named "WoolCOCK"...

Also, we would like to thank SaGe for buggin our code even more than KaViR already could....It has given us much time and pleasure to laugh at your stupid and senseless coding skills.

Anyhow, thanx to *CODER NAME*, *CODER NAME*, *CODER NAME*, *CODER NAME*, *CODER NAME*, *CODER NAME* and all those other hard working, know-how-to-code coders. We hope this will stay the only stable and good mud based on that ****ty codebase....
Seeing how we tackled 99% of the gazillion bugs on behalf of our dear "friend" KaViR, We think we did one helluva job already :)) Greetings and thanx for visiting our mud,

The Immortal team and coders of *MUD NAME*
-=-The only truly working, almost-bugfree code there is-=-


(Yes, I censored the mud/coder names; I don't want to start a flame war).

So back to the subject of builders, would you want the mud owner to be able to put something like that in the "credits" for your area? If they're allowed to modify your area, how could you stop them?

Then you move onto the whole topic of shared credits for derivative areas. Personally I think there really needs to be a better way of displaying credits for an area than just a few characters. I've thought about things such as a context-sensitive credits-style command which displayed the full credits for the area you're currently in. Or perhaps allow an area-name argument to the "areas" command which lists the full credits for that area. It still seems a bit cumbersome, but I really don't like the idea of the original author having their name removed from the main area list just because someone made some updates.
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Old 09-05-2002, 04:20 AM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (Alastair @ May 16 2002,04:13 am)
IMHO, the builder, as the IP owner, keeps the right to do whatever he wants with his areas - unless it is subject to the MUD's theme's copyright.
I was re-reading this thread and wanted to clarify something.  One cannot copyright a theme.  Neither can you copyright a storyline.  What you can copyright is a particular expression of a theme or a story.  

In other words, think of it this way:  There are thousands of love stories, many of which probably have very similar plot lines (boy meets girl, etc).  These ideas do not qualify for copyright protection.  However, a particular expression of the idea, i.e. a particular story, may be copyrighted.
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Old 09-05-2002, 06:48 AM   #32
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Mason wrote:
I was re-reading this thread and wanted to clarify something. One cannot copyright a theme.
I suspect what Alastair was referring to was the concept of fan fiction. If you created a mud based around the Pern theme, it wouldn't be long before Anne McCaffrey started threatening legal action against you (she's done this before). As you point out, the theme itself isn't copyrighted, but the stories are - and creating a mud based on the theme within those stories is going to result in a derivative work. If you have written up some lengthy information/stories about your custom theme and the builder has used that information to create their areas, then those areas are going to be considered derivative works - and can therefore can only be used under the "license" with which you allowed them to create that work in the first place.
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Old 09-06-2002, 05:26 AM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (KaVir @ Sep. 05 2002,12:48 pm)
If you have written up some lengthy information/stories about your custom theme and the builder has used that information to create their areas, then those areas are going to be considered derivative works - and can therefore can only be used under the "license" with which you allowed them to create that work in the first place.
Thanks for decoding my post - that's exactly what I meant.

For instance, the last MUD is used to code had a setting in a fully original world. We wrote lots of pages relating the history of the world, the pantheons, described the races which inhabit it and their relationship, how certain guilds were formed etc... a bit like all the stuff Tolkien wrote for himself about the background to the LOtR, and which his son finally published (although we don't come close neither in volume, quality and writing skill ).

That's what I meant by a strong-themed MUD. And since there is already quite a few stuff directing builders in creating areas, I believe this background material is enough that individual areas become a derivative.
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Old 09-06-2002, 11:43 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by (KaVir @ Sep. 05 2002,06:48 am)
Quote:
Originally Posted by
Mason wrote:
I was re-reading this thread and wanted to clarify something.  One cannot copyright a theme.
I suspect what Alastair was referring to was the concept of fan fiction.  If you created a mud based around the Pern theme, it wouldn't be long before Anne McCaffrey started threatening legal action against you (she's done this before).  As you point out, the theme itself isn't copyrighted, but the stories are - and creating a mud based on the theme within those stories is going to result in a derivative work.  If you have written up some lengthy information/stories about your custom theme and the builder has used that information to create their areas, then those areas are going to be considered derivative works - and can therefore can only be used under the "license" with which you allowed them to create that work in the first place.
Actually, let's consider this from a more popular source - Star Wars.  If a Lucas decided to bring suit against a mud that was using "Star Wars" in the title, the appropriate legal action would be Trademark infringement, not copyright violations.  One of the advantages for Lucas with a Trademark action instead of a copyright one is that it doesn't matter if the mud claims it was an original (i.e. non-derivative) work.  All that matters is that you are using a Trademark without permission.

On to your next point - developing a theme for your mud does not automatically qualify any work built for it as a derivative work.  As we agree, a theme cannot be copyrighted, only a particular expression of a theme.  A separate expression of the theme is not a derivative.  Think of it this way:  Let's say you are compiling a book of poems about ogres in the bathtub.  Just because you have an original idea doesn't mean that everyone who writes poems for your book with ogres in the shower has written a derivative work.  Each work is a separate, original work - unless it was a work made for hire.  



RE: copyrighting themes
17 USC §102(b) In no case does copyright protection for an original work of authorship extend to any idea, process, system, method of operation, concept, principle, or discovery, regardless of the form in which it is described, explained, illustrated, or embodied in such work.
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Old 09-07-2002, 01:15 PM   #35
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Mason wrote:
Actually, let's consider this from a more popular source - Star Wars. If a Lucas decided to bring suit against a mud that was using "Star Wars" in the title, the appropriate legal action would be Trademark infringement, not copyright violations
http://www.templetons.com/brad/copymyths.html

6) "If I make up my own stories, but base them on another work, my new work belongs to me."

False. U.S. Copyright law is quite explicit that the making of what are called "derivative works" -- works based or derived from another copyrighted work -- is the exclusive province of the owner of the original work. This is true even though the making of these new works is a highly creative process. If you write a story using settings or characters from somebody else's work, you need that author's permission.
Yes, that means almost all "fan fiction" is arguably a copyright violation. If you want to write a story about Jim Kirk and Mr. Spock, you need Paramount's permission, plain and simple. Now, as it turns out, many, but not all holders of popular copyrights turn a blind eye to "fan fiction" or even subtly encourage it because it helps them. Make no mistake, however, that it is entirely up to them whether to do that.

There is one major exception -- criticism and parody. The fair use provision says that if you want to make fun of something like Star Trek, you don't need their permission to include Mr. Spock. This is not a loophole; you can't just take a non-parody and claim it is one on a technicality. The way "fair use" works is you get sued for copyright infringement, and you admit you did copy, but that your copying was a fair use. A subjective judgment on, among other things, your goals, is then made.

However, it's also worth noting that a court has never ruled on this issue, because fan fiction cases always get settled quickly when the defendant is a fan of limited means sued by a powerful publishing company. Some argue that completely non-commercial fan fiction might be declared a fair use if courts get to decide. You can read more
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Old 09-07-2002, 02:23 PM   #36
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I guess you also forgot to read #5 from your same source.

If you don't defend your copyright you lose it." -- "Somebody has that name copyrighted!"

False. Copyright is effectively never lost these days, unless explicitly given away. You also can't "copyright a name" or anything short like that, such as almost all titles. You may be thinking of trade marks, which apply to names, and can be weakened or lost if not defended.
You generally trademark terms by using them to refer to your brand of a generic type of product or service. Like an "Apple" computer. Apple Computer "owns" that word applied to computers, even though it is also an ordinary word. Apple Records owns it when applied to music. Neither owns the word on its own, only in context, and owning a mark doesn't mean complete control -- see a more detailed treatise on this law for details.

You can't use somebody else's trademark in a way that would steal the value of the mark, or in a way that might make people confuse you with the real owner of the mark, or which might allow you to profit from the mark's good name. For example, if I were giving advice on music videos, I would be very wary of trying to label my works with a name like "mtv." :-) You can use marks to critcise or parody the holder, as long as it's clear you aren't the holder.

Moreover, from

Wincor, Book Review of Kaplan, An Unhurried View of Copyright, 76 Yale Law Journal, 1473, 1478-83 (1967)

"Fictitious characters are not "copyrights." Neither are fictitious areas, languages or battles. If Shakespeare were under copyright today, another's piracy of Falstaff might be a crucial factor in determining copyright infringement of particular plays, but Sir John is no copyright. He is something else, something without a name.

And yet not entirely without a name. The right name is "literary service mark protected against dilution." It lacks grace, but perhaps we shall coin something better after examining what likes behind it."
...
The author then goes on to describe why trademark infringement is a better cause of action than copyright infringement.

Finally, for protection to be granted to characters, they have to pass the "specificty" test. In other words, they have to be immediately recognizable and be deliniated enough so that their characteristics are clearly definable. A mud making up a storyline that happens to have a few characters in it does not meet this threshold. Mickey Mouse meets the criteria, some random dude on a mud does not.

Fan fiction is something entirely different. Fan fiction is usually an interpretation of the work or placing the work in a new setting. These are clearly derivatives. However, return to my "ogres in the shower" example. If I make a mud based completely on ogres in the shower, and I write 700 pages of themes and give all my ogres names, the fact that someone authors an area to be included in my area does not make it a derivative. Themes cannot be copyrighted. However, names of stories, characters, etc can be trademarked. That is why Lucas can come after you for having a mud named "Star Wars" regardless of whether it is about jedis, siths, the force, the rebels and the empire, or whether it is about camel racing in the amazon.
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Old 09-07-2002, 04:28 PM   #37
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I guess you also forgot to read #5 from your same source.
No, I read it. However it's irrelevent to the discussion at hand.

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Finally, for protection to be granted to characters, they have to pass the "specificty" test.
So does that mean you withdraw your original claim - the one I was responding to - in which you said "Actually, let's consider this from a more popular source - Star Wars. If a Lucas decided to bring suit against a mud that was using "Star Wars" in the title, the appropriate legal action would be Trademark infringement, not copyright violations"?
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Old 09-07-2002, 04:47 PM   #38
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Originally Posted by (KaVir @ Sep. 07 2002,4:28 pm)
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I guess you also forgot to read #5 from your same source.
No, I read it.  However it's irrelevent to the discussion at hand.

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Originally Posted by
Finally, for protection to be granted to characters, they have to pass the "specificty" test.
So does that mean you withdraw your original claim - the one I was responding to - in which you said "Actually, let's consider this from a more popular source - Star Wars.  If a Lucas decided to bring suit against a mud that was using "Star Wars" in the title, the appropriate legal action would be Trademark infringement, not copyright violations"?
I disagree that #5 is irrelevant.

"Protection" can refer to trademarks as well. I make no withdrawal of any points and continue to stand by my previous posts.

You fail to address my last two paragraphs that explain greatly the difference between copyrights and trademarks in these instances.
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Old 09-07-2002, 08:46 PM   #39
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If you write a story set in the "Star Wars" universe, it will violate Lucas's copyright. If it uses "Star Wars" in the title, then that will be trademark infrigement as well - but it will also be a copyright infrigement. The same applies to writing a story set in the "Star Trek" universe, or in the Tolkien world. I cannot simply change the names of the Tolkien races/characters and then copy them verbatum into my own stories - that would avoid the trademark infringements, but not the copyright ones. The same would apply to a well-developed "custom" theme - if you had written up a lot of information about it (and that information was used to create the area) you might well be creating a derivative work.

The link I provided earlier gives some good info on this: http://chillingeffects.org/fanfic/faq.cgi
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