Sellers who infringed upon copyrights; reported.
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Post Posted: Wed Jul 09, 2008 12:27 am 
 

I give Stephen credit for dotting his i's and crossing his t's to make sure his auction is on the level.

  

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Post Posted: Wed Jul 09, 2008 12:50 pm 
 

uh.oh:


** expired eBay auction **


who's gonna look after him?  :roll:


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Post Posted: Wed Jul 09, 2008 1:52 pm 
 

While there is an active group looking for TSR / WOTC listings on Ebay.   I notice that their is a huge amount of pirated Avalon Hill stuff for sale.   Is WOTC / HASBRO doing nothing tto protect their IP property for these titles?  

With the sale of these things going on for at least a year when do they enter the public domain by WOTC / HASBRO not defending them.

In particular:  

Avalon Hill | The General Magazine Project These guys have been selling .pdf's of the general saying that:

Public Domain:

The Avalon Hill General magazine was published from 1964 to 1998. Any of these magazines printed before January 1, 1978 have already fallen into the public domain. The purchase of Avalon Hill in 1998 by Wizards of the Coast and Hasbro, resulted in the return of many of the copyrights to the original designers. We have determined, after repeated contact with Avalon Hill, Wizards of the Coast, and Hasbro, that the copyrights for all these magazines are now in the public domain.

Fair Use:
Due to the fact that these magazines have been out of print and unavailable to the public for so long, the 'fair use' clause of the copyright act clearly applies for all of these magazines. It is also noteworthy that Avalon Hill authorized reproduction of General magazine articles for a nominal fee, back in the days when they were still being printed. Also, since we have changed the format of these magazines to electronic PDF and have enhanced them with a text search ability, the 'fair use' clause clearly applies.

Donations:
There has been a considerable amount money and time spent on this project. Should you wish to make a monitary donation to our project please contact us. We have spent over $3500.00 acquiring the original magazines, and they take about an hour per 10 pages to scan, clean up, PDF, and OCR.

Just wondering if this has been discussed somewhere.   Copyright enforcement seems to be much tighter on the RPG side where the wargame side is ignored.

  


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Post Posted: Wed Jul 09, 2008 3:37 pm 
 

GreyM wrote:Now as to whether he has ability to resale their software....now thats a whole other ball game, and without viewing the EULA's(End User Licensing Agreement) that came with it, none of us are in a position to answer that truthfully.

A EULA cannot negate the US Code, but I suppose the licenser (WotC or Code Monkey?) might grant further licence in that manner.  

I'm not going to comment on stephenf's particular case but as far as selling a single, unmodified, legally produced copy of a product is concerned, that's permitted according to Title 17, at least as of October 2007.  I am not a lawyer, but I don't find this stuff all that difficult to read.  I'll strip out the irrelevant bits to make it easier for others.

Section 109:
a) ...the owner of a particular copy...lawfully made under this title, or any person authorized by such owner, is entitled, without the authority of the copyright owner, to sell or otherwise dispose of the possession of that copy...

In English, that means you can sell, or authorize eBay to sell, your copy if it was legally produced in the first place.

Section 117:
a)  ...it is not an infringement for the owner of a copy of a computer program to make or authorize the making of another copy or adaptation of that computer program provided

 1) that such a new copy or adaptation is created as an essential step in the utilization of the computer program in conjunction with a machine and that it is used in no other manner, or

 2) that such new copy or adaptation is for archival purposes only and that all archival copies are destroyed in the event that continued possession of the computer program should cease to be rightful.

In English, that means you can legally create a copy for installation or backup purposes.  When you dispose of the original by any means, you can't keep that installation or backup.

(b)  ...Any exact copies prepared in accordance with the provisions of this section may...transferred, along with the copy from which such copies were prepared, only as part of the...transfer of all rights in the program. Adaptations so prepared may be transferred only with the authorization of the copyright owner.

In English, that means you must dispose* of any backup copies along with the original.  If you wish to transfer an adaptation (a modified version of the original), you must have permission from the copyright holder.  They might grant you license to transfer some such an adaption in a EULA, but I find that doubtful.

Finally, if there is any sort of copy-protection on said product, you cannot legally circumvent it, thanks to the DMCA.

Hopefully that helps someone.

* In the sense of "you no longer have it", not necessarily "throw out".

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Post Posted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 4:45 pm 
 

stephenf wrote:Public Domain:

The Avalon Hill General magazine was published from 1964 to 1998. Any of these magazines printed before January 1, 1978 have already fallen into the public domain. The purchase of Avalon Hill in 1998 by Wizards of the Coast and Hasbro, resulted in the return of many of the copyrights to the original designers. We have determined, after repeated contact with Avalon Hill, Wizards of the Coast, and Hasbro, that the copyrights for all these magazines are now in the public domain.

Very questionable. I'm a bit of a General collector myself, and I wouldn't touch these with an 11-foot pole.

At this point, all we've got is this guy's word that what he says is true; I've certainly never heard of this "reversion of copyright" tale. And, frankly, for sellers of digital items, their word is hardly enough.

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Post Posted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 5:02 pm 
 

stephenf wrote:Public Domain


I think this is a pile of crap.  Copyright is a tough thing to follow but after the magazine folds and the copyright holders relinquish the rights, they go back to the authors of individual articles.  The copyright then does not enter the public domain until 25 years after the author dies.  Copyright laws in the US basically follow Disney and that is the case there.

Also, if they are now offering the magazines in PDF format, legally then need to have the authorization from every single author/artist for the magazine for the change of format from print to electronic (unless they had the foresight to include this in the initial contracts).  When Dragon magazine was released on CDs TSR/WotC had to pay out half a million dollars to the authors of articles.

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Post Posted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 7:40 pm 
 

i will never agree its a legit thing whatever gets said......it just doesnt ring right.



  


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Post Posted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 8:18 pm 
 

killjoy32 wrote:i will never agree its a legit thing whatever gets said......it just doesnt ring right.


Tha Avalon Hill thing is not legit but there's no one contesting it (yet).

  


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Post Posted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 9:05 pm 
 

I completely agree having looked at copyright law on the net that they don't have a leg to stand on.   From a purely acedemic standpoint however, if a company doesn't defend its intelectual property rights as in this case for at least 1 or 2 years, what constitues making it public domain by lack of defense?

I was just wondering if anybody had any experience in this area.   I haven't read any actual articles about a product becomming public domain because of lack of defense of the IP.   I realize that IP law allows for items to fall into the public domain by lack of defeding it.

In the case of AH Products, HASBRO/WOTC has done a awful job in communication in regards to what exactly they hold title to / what's been sold to other companies / and finally what they aren't sure about as in the case of the General Magazine I believe.

I don't defend these guys at all.   I think they are violating copyright law.   Hasbro would have a great product if they actually sold the magazine run electronically.

  


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Post Posted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 9:18 pm 
 

Bruce Monnin the creater of the replacement magazine for the General / The Boardgamer Magazine also supports these guys at ahgeneral.org.    He is the current editor of operations magazine at MMP.  

I don't know what his relationship to ahgeneral.org is but he did/does have contact with Avolon Hill issues more than most people.  

His website is at:

The BOARDGAMER

Perhaps they did try and contact HASBRO.   I don't know.  I have a good friend that knows him I'll have him ask him while he's at the World Boardgaming Championships.

  

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Post Posted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 11:30 pm 
 

If someone doesn't think they can make a buck off it, sometimes they don't defend their copyright or abandon it entirely.

In a case I'm familiar with, Conde Nast publications stopped defending copyright of many of their pulp characters. Many of the pulp stories were on the edge of becoming public domain, and apparantly Conde Nast didn't value the property anymore.  This includes such pulp characters as The Spider, Doc Savage, and the Shadow. There are tons of cd roms, reprints and downloads out there, with no attention paid to the copyright, and no one defending it anymore.  This follows many years of Conde Nast being very proactive in defending their property and attempting to charge outrageous fees for the reprint rights to series such as Doc Savage (rumor was the Conde Nast wanted a million bucks for the rights to Doc, who although one of my favorite pulp characters at this point isn't worth half that on the general market).  Finally it seems they just gave up policing the flood of illegal reprints and downloads and now they are very easily found on Ebay and elsewhere.

It takes two to tango, and a company not vigorously defending a copyright just gives this sort of activity the appearance of tacit approval.  I'm surprised at some of the stuff that ends up in the public domain, and suprised large companies with somthing to lose like Hasbro don't do more to defend themselves.

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Post Posted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 11:44 pm 
 

Badmike wrote:If someone doesn't think they can make a buck off it, sometimes they don't defend their copyright or abandon it entirely.

In a case I'm familiar with, Conde Nast publications stopped defending copyright of many of their pulp characters. Many of the pulp stories were on the edge of becoming public domain, and apparantly Conde Nast didn't value the property anymore.  This includes such pulp characters as The Spider, Doc Savage, and the Shadow. There are tons of cd roms, reprints and downloads out there, with no attention paid to the copyright, and no one defending it anymore.  This follows many years of Conde Nast being very proactive in defending their property and attempting to charge outrageous fees for the reprint rights to series such as Doc Savage (rumor was the Conde Nast wanted a million bucks for the rights to Doc, who although one of my favorite pulp characters at this point isn't worth half that on the general market).  Finally it seems they just gave up policing the flood of illegal reprints and downloads and now they are very easily found on Ebay and elsewhere.

It takes two to tango, and a company not vigorously defending a copyright just gives this sort of activity the appearance of tacit approval.  I'm surprised at some of the stuff that ends up in the public domain, and suprised large companies with somthing to lose like Hasbro don't do more to defend themselves.

Mike B.


The General Mags from Avalon Hill probably don't belong to Hasbro. Hasbro was after only a handful of properties, many Avalon Hill games simply reveretd back to the authors and the General Magazine was probably a worse kettle of fish to sift through then Dragon Magazine had ever been. But these SOBs doing the bootlegs on ebay need to have just one of the authors sue them, I just don't know if any individual has the money to spend on the lawsuit (and they probably wouldn't get anything but legal costs and more than likely not even that).

  

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Post Posted: Tue Sep 02, 2008 8:57 am 
 

Noticed this DVD of Twilight 2000 .pdfs yesterday:


** expired eBay auction **


The same seller has a Shadowrun DVD, DC Heroes DVD, and The Maxx cartoon series DVD.  Already submitted them to Ebay.


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Post Posted: Tue Sep 02, 2008 9:00 am 
 

Kingofpain89 wrote:Noticed this DVD of Twilight 2000 .pdfs yesterday:


** expired eBay auction **


The same seller has a Shadowrun DVD, DC Heroes DVD, and The Maxx cartoon series DVD.  Already submitted them to Ebay.


I think I reported the DC Heroes one several days ago.  Ah, eBay is on the ball as always, huh? :roll:


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Post Posted: Tue Sep 02, 2008 9:30 am 
 

g026r wrote:
I think I reported the DC Heroes one several days ago.  Ah, eBay is on the ball as always, huh? :roll:


From the fight that Ebay had with France I think ebay is fine with bootlegs and will only take them down when threatened seriously.

  

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Post Posted: Tue Sep 02, 2008 9:21 pm 
 

JasonZavoda wrote:
From the fight that Ebay had with France I think ebay is fine with bootlegs and will only take them down when threatened seriously.


It seems ebay does not watch out for bootlegs or illegal copies, but instead relies on the public to do it for them. So not only do they make money from us (the public), we also work for them for free.

  

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Post Posted: Tue Sep 02, 2008 11:13 pm 
 

xraygord wrote:
It seems ebay does not watch out for bootlegs or illegal copies, but instead relies on the public to do it for them. So not only do they make money from us (the public), we also work for them for free.


Which is why I no longer participate in nailing these assholes....if Ebay can't be relied upon to clean up their own yard, I'll be damned if I'm going to volunteer my free time to sweep the sidewalk for them.

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Post Posted: Wed Sep 03, 2008 1:58 am 
 

Badmike wrote:
Which is why I no longer participate in nailing these assholes....if Ebay can't be relied upon to clean up their own yard, I'll be damned if I'm going to volunteer my free time to sweep the sidewalk for them.

Mike B.


What we probably need to do find a company that will take on ebay like in france...then tell the company, not ebay, and see if it flows on to the rest...

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