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Modder Rights - 4/30/2017 9:34:11 PM   
Unforeseen


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Soo...you all know that I and many other modders have randomly disappeared throughout the history of this game and/or abandoned their unfinished mods. Most people assume that without permission from the original author, the mod cannot be finished by a second party.

That actually isn't true. edits: Copyright applies to original work. Editing a text document owned by matrix doesn't make you the owner of the file, or the edit. Examples would be changes to research.txt, fighters.txt, about.txt. Therefore, realistically speaking you can do whatever you want with such a mod. Of course, if the mod includes files that actually were originally created by the modder without using paradox owned content those would be covered. Examples of this would be sound files, images, scripts.

I'm not saying that you should just go around stealing mods, but if someone has just vanished off the face of the earth (Such as Lurchi) or abandoned their mod in protest (Such as Locarnus) and you still have a copy of the mod and it's obviously not covered by copyright then you can finish it.

< Message edited by Unforeseen -- 5/5/2017 11:30:50 AM >


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RE: Modder Rights - 5/5/2017 1:08:56 AM   
BigWolf


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If a mod contains your own assets (example; graphics, or sounds, you've created yourself), you gain automatic copyright on those assets, unless it overlaps with pre-existing copyright, then it becomes trickier

If you're simply altered game data files, or put together assets from other sources, then it'll be a grey area, and will depend on complexities, in most cases though, you won't have much in protection, plus reviving a dead mod could be argued as fair use, though I would suggest not reusing any graphic/sound assets you can't verify source of

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RE: Modder Rights - 5/5/2017 2:53:45 AM   
Unforeseen


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quote:

ORIGINAL: BigWolf

If a mod contains your own assets (example; graphics, or sounds, you've created yourself), you gain automatic copyright on those assets, unless it overlaps with pre-existing copyright, then it becomes trickier

If you're simply altered game data files, or put together assets from other sources, then it'll be a grey area, and will depend on complexities, in most cases though, you won't have much in protection, plus reviving a dead mod could be argued as fair use, though I would suggest not reusing any graphic/sound assets you can't verify source of


That isn't the way copyright works. You have to actually apply and pay for copyright protection. It's not automatic. If I'm wrong though feel free to show me where it says you are automatically under copyright protection without registration.

edit: you were right, although most mods won't be covered by copyright in favor of the modder. But rather, the game publisher. But we all have permission to create mods.

< Message edited by Unforeseen -- 5/5/2017 11:32:14 AM >


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RE: Modder Rights - 5/5/2017 7:54:31 AM   
rjord1

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Unforeseen


That isn't the way copyright works. You have to actually apply and pay for copyright protection. It's not automatic. If I'm wrong though feel free to show me where it says you are automatically under copyright protection without registration.




Actually.... thats not true.


Misconceptions about copyright.

Myth: If there’s no copyright notice, it’s not covered by copyright

Fact: Copyright automatically applies to written and artistic works from the moment they’re created. You don’t have to ‘do’ anything to obtain copyright. The copyright notice (©+ name of copyright owner + year) is an internationally recognised signifier that a work is protected by copyright that you can put on your work, but not necessary for copyright protection.

https://www.copyright.com.au/about-copyright/copyright-myths/

As the owner of the work your work is still copyrighted even if you have done nothing.

I spent 3 days working on a book cover for an author and then found a publisher using my image without my permission. I would have let them use it if they had asked but as they did not I demanded they stop using my image.

I am also a website designer and the content of my sites are protected by copyright even though I have not registered my page for copyright or payed anything.

< Message edited by rjord1 -- 5/5/2017 8:04:10 AM >


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RE: Modder Rights - 5/5/2017 11:24:14 AM   
Unforeseen


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https://www.copyright.com/learn/about-copyright/

Hmm, I'm not sure how I missed that. Regardless, do you really think that someone is going to be able to win a lawsuit or even bother with one over a mod? In this case these are simple document edits in a file owned by the game publisher. Not only is it very difficult to prove someone did it intentionally, it's unlikely to hold up in court since the "author" didn't actually create anything. The case would probably be dismissed before it even reached the courtroom.

Now a more complex mod? Like with unique scripts and/or images that did not exist before the modder created them? That would be covered, and alot easier to prove and thus more likely to actually make it to the courtroom.

I should edit my original post though.

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RE: Modder Rights - 5/5/2017 10:18:34 PM   
BigWolf


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That's why I said altered data files would be a grey area, in DW's case it might technically it might fall under fair use, as the copyright owner of the file (Matrix) has encouraged alterations, but it'd still be a stretch
However, original assets that you've created yourself will be protected by copyright, no matter what (Even when a games EULA tries to say otherwise), providing they aren't encroaching on pre-existing copyright

But like most laws, they only work in your favour if you have the money to fight for it. For most modders, this won't be the case, however the publisher/developer could step in if they see it as a good PR win for minimal cost

On a practical level though, most of the abandoned mods for DW that would see an interest in revival are mainly extensive edits of the data files, and/or graphics/sounds the original modder has no copyright on anyway, so providing you make it clear who the original effort was been made by, I would imagine you're fine

(Obviously, I'm not a lawyer, and all this comes from various readings from actual lawyers who put perspectives of laws onto the internet)

< Message edited by BigWolf -- 5/5/2017 10:19:43 PM >


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