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Martin Brentnall

Member Since 25 Feb 2013
Offline Last Active Aug 30 2013 02:55 AM

Posts I've Made

In Topic: Infringement of remakes and their component parts (engine, plugins, data)

26 February 2013 - 12:19 AM

Thanks for all the informative responses; that's a lot of good reading. :)



That being said, it's a shame when people waste so much time, talent, and work trying to copy someone else's work. Especially when they do a good job, and could have had an awesome project of their own.

To be honest, the engine and its editing tools are my project, which is where my real interests lie.  The game is just a "case study", if you will, to stress and test the sanity and flexibility of the engine.

In Topic: Infringement of remakes and their component parts (engine, plugins, data)

25 February 2013 - 07:19 AM

The pop song recording and VLC/movie distribution examples are interesting.  However, in both of these examples, the infringing nature of the recording and the movie can be immediately revealed by existing software.

In my case, my engine is currently not released, so it may be possible to approach in a different way.  How about this:

Let's say I only distribute the XML file without revealing it's meaning or purpose other than stating that it is later to become a required part of a free game.  Without an engine to interpret the XML, it is not possible to reveal what the XML represents and therefore the XML cannot be shown to be infringing.  As such, the meaningless XML file must surely be legal to distribute and possess at this stage.

Now, let's assume that some people download the XML file in anticipation of later using it to play the promised free game.

Later, once the XML file is sufficiently out in the wild, I then release the engine to read it.  Suddenly the XML file becomes illegal copyright infringement because the engine reveals that the XML represents a remake of an existing game.

What effect does this have on those who already obtained a copy of the XML when it was a non-infringing file?  Do those people suddenly and unknowingly become guilty of possession of copyright infringing content?

Let's say I cease distribution of the XML file immediately before release of the engine and rely on the community to redistribute the game XML via torrents, etc.  Since the XML content was not infringing at the time that I distributed it, can I still be considered guilty of infringement?

I do realise this would be kind of ridiculous in practice and I don't really anticipate legal problems in my endeavour to recreate a long forgotten obscure 1980's computer game.  I'm really more just curious. smile.png