Jump to content
  • Advertisement
Sign in to follow this  
JQP

Legal questions about copyright/trademark/whatever

This topic is 1997 days old which is more than the 365 day threshold we allow for new replies. Please post a new topic.

If you intended to correct an error in the post then please contact us.

Recommended Posts

(Edit: sorry, like I said, I'm pretty fried. I'll read the FAQs first)
(Edit 2: okay, no longer sorry, the FAQ doesn't answer my question and the only link in it that might be related is a 404)

Hi, sorry if this comes off as incoherent, I was up all night working and could really use some shuteye.

IANAL, or a game dev, so I don't know how the legal stuff works. Let's say I come up with a great storyline, general design, and what I think is a killer title, the kind someone might be inclined to "borrow" if I'm not protected. Now, I really don't care if someone steals ideas from me. Imitation, flattery, and all that. Plus, I like my ideas, generally speaking, so I wouldn't mind seeing them realized, even if it's not me doing the realizing. I digress; I'm just trying to say that I'm not uptight about this kind of stuff, much less think anyone actually wants to swipe my ideas.

But I don't want to find out that I can't use my own ideas because someone used them first, either.

So, how would I "register" my work so I have it on record that it's original and not "derivative," to use the legalese.

Or, what if I come up with a title independently, only to find out its been used, but in an otherwise unrelated work (including video games)? The more I think about it, the more I suspect this could be the case - it's not a terribly original name, just an apt/catchy one.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Advertisement
You can register your copyright as soon as you commit your idea in tangible form (like writing, for instance). Go to copyright.gov if you're in the USA.
The name of the game and the characters are not copyrightable -- those would be subject to trademark instead.
You say one of the FAQ links is broken? Care to say which one?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Noticed that

http://archive.gamedev.net/reference/articles/article1985.asp

and

http://underdevelopmentlaw.com/clone-games-and-fan-games-legal-issues/

 

are broken ... so I did not find what I was looking for, either.

 

Basically the whole question: Q. What is the difference between Copyright, Trademark and Patent?

is arguably not answered at all right, right now.

 

 

Found the archived Gamedev article under a different URL, though:

 

http://www.gamedev.net/page/resources/_/business/business-and-law/legal-issues-for-rookie-development-studios-par-r1985

 

Part I is there:

http://www.gamedev.net/page/resources/_/business/business-and-law/legal-issues-for-rookie-development-studios-part-i-r1971

Edited by DareDeveloper

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The underdevelopmentlaw website has been redesigned. I'm sure that article is still there somewhere.  Until I find it, here's another: http://www.intelaw.com/pages/thb/articles/gamearticle2.htm

 

[Edit] Um, well, actually, underdevelopmentlaw is down completely. I don't know if the articles are going to be posted somewhere else or not. Anyone who wants to see those old articles could try the waybackmachine.

Edited by Tom Sloper

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  

  • Advertisement
×

Important Information

By using GameDev.net, you agree to our community Guidelines, Terms of Use, and Privacy Policy.

GameDev.net is your game development community. Create an account for your GameDev Portfolio and participate in the largest developer community in the games industry.

Sign me up!