Copyright Issues


#1

Has anyone encountered any copyright issues with regard to the images they use when creating custom sticks for other people?

I was thinking about this because I’m thinking of creating some sticks to sell and was wondering where I could get the art from. I know DeviantArt is a fantastic resource, and a lot of the stuff there is licensed under the creative commons license, but I don’t think it covers you.

Any thoughts, recommendations or suggestions on this?


#2

It’s not going to be a huge problem, because you’re not really selling the art, you’re selling the stick.

If you run into an issue all you would have to do is let the individual print and place the artwork by themselves.


#3

i’d be safe and either ask the owner of the artwork or make my own


#4

Luckyguy- I’d like to provide high-grade laser-cut artwork through, so I wouldn’t want any of my customers having to print out the artwork themselves unless requested.

I also think the artwork adds a lot to the image and character of a custom, so I don’t think the artist would feel like it’s “just” artwork if you know what I mean.

swl77- you’re probably right, I don’t like the idea of someone else feeling like their work was just stolen for profit and being slapped with a pi$$ed off-email! :stuck_out_tongue: Best to just get in touch with the artists’ to be safe.

thanks guys.


#5

If you want to be nice try to contact the artist or leave their sig on the art. In all honesty one of the copyright holders would have to see your stick ask the person who has it and they have to cough up reliable info about you. The only way anyone is going to get legal about someting like that is if you ignore a cease order even then the court issues would far outweigh the money they would get in a settlement. People have been using the capcom and udon art on stick all over the place and no one has posted copyright with issues so don’t sweat it.


#6

Actually, this isn’t quite true. Below is a snippit from the FAQs on Arcade in a Box’s website.


#7

Does that include fanart? I probably wouldn’t dare use official Capcom/Namco art.


#8

There is a difference between people using Capcom/Udon (or any other copyright holder’s) artwork on their personal stick, and a custom stick builder using said artwork and then selling those sticks to others. The former is about people using it for their own personal use, and the latter is about someone selling copyrighted artwork for commercial gain. In other words, stealing someone else’s hard work and sweat-equity and making money off it.

This issue came up in the Arcade-in-a-Box thread, and it got ugly. People (posters in the forum here) were up in arms and mad at Capcom for going after such a tiny operation that AIAB happens to be (in comparison to Capcom, may be not in comparison to other custom stick makers). The reason this is such a big deal, and why copyright holders go after even the “little” guy, is about protecting their property.

When it comes to intellectual property (actually, property in general), is that if the property owner does not defend his property then the courts will deem that property abandoned by the owner and rule it as public property, and in the case of intellectual property, courts will deem it as a “gift.” In other words, if an intellectual property (or copyright holder in the current case) does not defend his property at every infringement that he comes across (or should know about), and does it often enough, the courts will basically say - “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure” - because the copyright holders does not value it enough to defend himself against those who infringe must mean he does not care for it and has abandoned it, but because others using it, see value in it, and are exploiting it, it is better for society overall if we the courts allow everyone to use it as public property. There is a personal,private use exception on copyrights - what you do in the confines of your home is your business, as long as you are not making money off it by selling to others.

Now imagine if Capcom did not defend its copyrights in Street Fighter, and the court deemed it as being “gifted” to society. Great for all the custom stick builders. Fine. But it also opens the door for shoddy Chinese knock offs. Not that copyrights and intellectual property protections ever stopped cheap Chinese knock offs - but that is a discussion for another thread on international rule of law and enforcement. The problem is, if the Street Fighter copyright is deemed abandoned by the courts, it opens the door for numerous third rate game developers to put out Street Fighter clones that are near indistinguishable from the original at the time of purchase. People will only find out after the purchase, after they pop the disc in to their console, and by then it will be too late. It cheapens the brand, and makes it forever associated with a bad user experience. Over time, with enough such experiences and bad word-of-mouth, consumers will stop purchasing Street Fighter and move on to something that represents a better, more consistent experience.

Of course, by then all the custom stick builders and users personally customizing their sticks will no longer want to put Street Fighter artwork since it will have such negative reputation for poor quality. And this forum and community will be dead. And Capcom certainly won’t be putting in the time, effort and money in developing Street Fighter 5. May be then they will move on to King of Fighters and hope they can freely use that artwork.

The best thing for custom stick makers to do is to get permission from the copyright holder. If you don’t get permission from the holder (it is their right to give or not give permission), move on and create your own artwork or hire some talented artist and pay him/her for their hard work to create some for you.


#9

Oooor use thier art until they complain. :slight_smile:


#10

all of your questions should be at least consolidated into one thread or asked directly to the vendors. but please try to keep all inquiries off the tech talk. this is not the place to ask questions for if you want to mass produce joysticks. get a legitimate consultant if you want to operate a business in this industry, whether it’s in your basement room or in a business office. if you dont know what you’re doing, there’s a good chance that you’re not fit to do what you want to do


#11

+1

OP do your own research

-joe