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Offline Arquarian

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GW Copywrite rules
« on: July 3, 2013, 07:57:58 AM »
Relating to our site rules, specifically rule 1.
Quote
To clarify: This includes posting statlines, pointcosts and such found in the codex that you are using. Totals for a unit is ok, but cost per model, upgrade, weapon or such is not ok.

Maybe I've missed something but I can find no reference in the GW IP rules that prohibits the posting of stat lines, points costs or otherwise...

Legal: Page 4 | Games Workshop

Can someone help me here?

I'm just trying to get to the the bottom of the argument so I can better understand our stance.


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« Last Edit: July 3, 2013, 08:31:10 AM by Arquarian »

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Re: GW Copyright rules
« Reply #1 on: July 3, 2013, 09:46:08 AM »
That rule is common to most wargaming fora.

The section from page 4 which I believe covers it is this:

Quote
- Make any direct copies and/or scans of Games Workshop publications, images, or other materials. This includes any Out-o- Production materials, web site materials, and White Dwarf articles. We would however suggest that you produce your own materials (as long as you follow the other requirements of this policy).

To reproduce stat lines, and points costs, would be effectively copying (albeit by hand) GW material, and would thus breach their copyright rules.
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Offline Underhand

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Re: GW Copywrite rules
« Reply #2 on: July 4, 2013, 05:51:33 AM »
That rule is common to most wargaming fora.

The section from page 4 which I believe covers it is this:

Quote
- Make any direct copies and/or scans of Games Workshop publications, images, or other materials. This includes any Out-o- Production materials, web site materials, and White Dwarf articles. We would however suggest that you produce your own materials (as long as you follow the other requirements of this policy).

To reproduce stat lines, and points costs, would be effectively copying (albeit by hand) GW material, and would thus breach their copyright rules.

That's not what "direct copy" means.  The second sentence kind of gives it away.

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Re: GW Copyright rules
« Reply #3 on: July 4, 2013, 07:01:07 AM »
Who said I was referring to 'direct copy'?

If you reproduce the points costs/stats of individual upgrades, and units, you are scanning the material in all but name.  It's just a case of copying it from the book onto the computer screen via a keyboard input, rather than literally scanning it.

Yes, we play it ultra-safe here in terms of how much copyrighted information we remove, but that is because GW legal has visited this forum in the past, and has told us to change things in the past.
« Last Edit: July 4, 2013, 07:02:23 AM by Irisado »
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Offline Arquarian

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Re: GW Copywrite rules
« Reply #4 on: July 4, 2013, 07:48:35 AM »
This is where the sites policy is as you say Iris, Ultra-safe and may not necessarily have to be so.


I fully agree scans, direct copies, hard or otherwise of fluff, stat lines, points costs are or can be construed under these guidelines as a breach.


However mentioning in conversation that a Dire Avenger has a toughness of 3 is not. My reasoning is that the above information is useless in its present context as you require more information in able to do anything namely the corresponding strength of a weapon / model and the to wound chart.


Whereas saying the Dire avenger is xx points would be a violation as this information can be used in its present context to build a list etc...


I'm not trying to be a smartarse and circumnavigate the site rules, that is not my aim. I  simply trying to see if there is a way the site can be a little more user friendly without of course incurring any GW wrath.


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Offline WisdomLS

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Re: GW Copywrite rules
« Reply #5 on: July 4, 2013, 08:02:52 AM »
I'm with Arquarian on this one, it does get a little tedious reading posts where we have to talk in code because we're afraid of breaking rules (I do it myself). We've all read about space marine commanders costing the same as 20x Melta bombs or wraithlords having twice the toughness of a space marines.

Reading the GW legal bumf (I have no actual knowledge mind you) it does seem that the rules are mainly there to stop people taking/posting actual direct copies or images of their works.

Is there a way to check with GW to see what they consider permissible? Would certainly make discussing their game easier if we could actually use the correct numbers and the like.
« Last Edit: July 4, 2013, 08:04:46 AM by WisdomLS »

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Re: GW Copyright rules
« Reply #6 on: July 4, 2013, 08:34:56 AM »
Is there a way to check with GW to see what they consider permissible? Would certainly make discussing their game easier if we could actually use the correct numbers and the like.

People have e-mailed them before, but all they get in return are vague answers, and references to their IP policy.  You're welcome to try yourself, but I don't think, based on past experiences, that you'd get very far.

I've never understood why people need to post stats anyway.  Everyone reading the forum is highly likely to own the book for the armies which they play, so why post stats?  It's completely unnecessary.

To take a made up example:

Quote
I think Evil Killer Termite Moles are great for shredding infantry because they have a S100 AP66 and 48 inch range gun
.

How is this useful?  I think that it's safe to assume that everybody playing the army which includes this unit already knows this information, so why even bother posting the stats?

A far more useful statement might be:

Quote
The Evil Killer Termite Moles make for a very effective anti-infantry unit, owing to the strength, and AP of their weapons being very well suited to to shredding lightly armoured infantry.  Their range makes them even more effective at this role, since it's very hard for opposing units with small arms to get into range to return fire.

No stats posted, points are conveyed eloquently, and no talking in code was necessary, because the stats aren't even required to make the point.
« Last Edit: July 4, 2013, 08:43:17 AM by Irisado »
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Offline Arquarian

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Re: GW Copywrite rules
« Reply #7 on: July 4, 2013, 09:59:16 AM »

I fully agree Iris and you're absolutely correct that if expressed eloquently there is likely no need to post stats however, this is not always the case. I was recently commenting in a thread with many acronyms that I had to ask the measing of the sentence abnd this is by far an isolated incidence.


Unfortunatley there are some who are too lazy to type even the entrie word let alone a full sentence. It is in these cases where people will want to post stats rather than express themselves more eloquently.




(This poses the side issue of the use of acronyms and possibly to update of the glossary of terms we have. Its a little dated.Did I just volenteer myself?)


In your example though Iris, would not the moderators step in and moderate your example of...
Quote
I think Evil Killer Termite Moles are great for shredding infantry because they have a S100 AP66 and 48 inch range gun


to...


Quote
I think Evil Killer Termite Moles are great for shredding infantry because they have a S "of lots" AP "a low value" and "a long" range gun


which neuters the peosons post.


I will conceed that GW will have NO quarm with this moderation however,
I think there is a balance to be sought here.






« Last Edit: July 4, 2013, 10:08:04 AM by Arquarian »

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Re: GW Copyright rules
« Reply #8 on: July 4, 2013, 10:40:39 AM »
Different moderators have different styles when fixing copyright.  I normally just replies values with x, but will use wording when necessary; others may do it a slightly different way.  Neither of which really causes very many posts to lose meaning in my experience, which just underlines the point I'm making about the stats not serving any purpose.  Either way, the most important thing is to make sure that GW legal don't have any reason to get in touch with us.
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Offline Arquarian

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Re: GW Copywrite rules
« Reply #9 on: July 4, 2013, 12:26:12 PM »
I'd argue theta the most important thing is to create a solid community rather than live in fear of GW's legal team.


The issue is and the reason I inquired in the first place is that at present I believe, as WisdomLS pointed out, that many use daft and round about ways to state the obvious due to the fear of moderators in the background, ready to pounce.  This does not promote free flowing conversation.  the modetrators are enforcing the rules. I have absolutely no problems with that.  [size=78%]My point Iris, was not concerning moderators at all but the rule itself.[/size]

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Re: GW Copywrite rules
« Reply #10 on: July 4, 2013, 12:55:53 PM »
I also agree that in generally you can just use good language to make your point in a discussion, but what if the discussion is about the stats?

Math hammer threads would be alot clearer if the poster could actually post what he means instead of saying "An autocannon str weapon VS a target with an guard toughness and a TEQ save plus an iron halo like invulnerable save."

Sure most of use know what I was saying above but it would have been alot clearer if I'd been able to just use the four numbers that I wanted to use.

Also I don't see why people should always have their codex's to hand to be able to take part in such discussions, GW's policy doesn't seem to prohibit the posting of stats just the reproduction of their physical property, there must be a way to get a clear answer on this, perhaps looking at the policy's of other forums and seeing where they draw the line.

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Re: GW Copywrite rules
« Reply #11 on: July 4, 2013, 01:11:00 PM »
The reason we're over cautious is pretty clear if you look carefully at page 3 of GW Legal to be fair

First, under So What is this IP Stuff then? they define what they consider to be their Intellectual property as pretty much being anything which they produce and isn't a physical item

Further down the page, under the section titled Very Important Bit they basically state that theGW Legal webpage isn't the full deal and even if it was they always reserve the right to go after anybody who does anything they decide to take offence to, at any time they please without any notice or need to update anything on that section of the website

In other words, if they decide to take it into their heads at any point to take offence to us posting stats they'll come after us with the legal department, so why risk posting stats at all?
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Offline WisdomLS

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Re: GW Copywrite rules
« Reply #12 on: July 4, 2013, 01:18:31 PM »
That certainly seems a better reason, I was just going via the small snippet posted above.

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Re: GW Copyright rules
« Reply #13 on: July 4, 2013, 01:24:53 PM »
I'd argue theta the most important thing is to create a solid community rather than live in fear of GW's legal team.

If GW's legal team think that what's being posted fails to comply with their IP policy, then there is no solid community; in fact there is no community at all, as they just ask the host to pull the plug if the site owner refuses to comply to the letter with a cease and desist order.  Does that explain why we take the stance that we do?

As Changeyname points out above, that is a real possibility based on what they say on page three, so again, I have to say that the risk is too high.  Yes, we probably play it soo safe, but we're hardly 'waiting to pounce' as you put it ;).  Indeed my favourite days on the forum are when nobody posts excessive stats, so that I don't have to do any editing :).

I also agree that in generally you can just use good language to make your point in a discussion, but what if the discussion is about the stats?

Math hammer threads would be alot clearer if the poster could actually post what he means instead of saying "An autocannon str weapon VS a target with an guard toughness and a TEQ save plus an iron halo like invulnerable save."

Sure most of use know what I was saying above but it would have been alot clearer if I'd been able to just use the four numbers that I wanted to use.

There's nothing wrong with posting stats when they are abstract, and do not refer to any named model, or unit.

An example:

[insert number of hits here] S4 vs MEQ [insert your wound percentage results here]
[insert number of hits here] S4 vs TEQ [insert your wound percentage results here]

This would be if you wanted to assess the impact of S4 hits in general (i.e. not attributed to any unit or weapon) against MEQ/TEQ units.

If you want to used named weapons:

Autocannon: Average hits = x, average wounds vs GEQ =, average wounds vs MEQ =, average wound vs TEQ =

That's simple, and conveys the point, without using any stats about the Autocannon at all.

Quote
Also I don't see why people should always have their codex's to hand to be able to take part in such discussions, GW's policy doesn't seem to prohibit the posting of stats just the reproduction of their physical property, there must be a way to get a clear answer on this, perhaps looking at the policy's of other forums and seeing where they draw the line.

It's easy to remember most commonly used stats without having to keep looking at the codex ;).

I've already mentioned that other fora have the same rule regarding posting stat lines/points costs that Arquarian has quoted from our rules.  That is, however, not a guide for us.  As a private forum, the rules are determined by the site owner, not based on what other fora do, so there's always going to be some level of variance regarding the rules.

As I say, you're welcome to e-mail GW to ask for clarity, but I'm dubious as to how much you'll get.

I think that Changeyname's post covers everything else.

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Re: GW Copywrite rules
« Reply #14 on: July 4, 2013, 03:36:15 PM »
The reason we're over cautious is pretty clear if you look carefully at page 3 of GW Legal to be fair

First, under So What is this IP Stuff then? they define what they consider to be their Intellectual property as pretty much being anything which they produce and isn't a physical item

Further down the page, under the section titled Very Important Bit they basically state that theGW Legal webpage isn't the full deal and even if it was they always reserve the right to go after anybody who does anything they decide to take offence to, at any time they please without any notice or need to update anything on that section of the website

In other words, if they decide to take it into their heads at any point to take offence to us posting stats they'll come after us with the legal department, so why risk posting stats at all?
GW has an incredibly generous definition of IP unfortunately for them it itsnt one that is backed up in law as recently shown in the chapter house case where they infact lost alot of what they claim was IP they also lost the right to prevent people using a lot of logos. Also i accordance with IP law in certain countries and states reproduction of a percentage of an item is permissible given that its in the context of a review whether request by the manufacturer or not.
Case in point look at the numerous youtube videos reviewing any new codex which often involves the reviewer reading the statline out loud and often reading a rule out word for word.
As for GW legal contacting a host and having them pull a website i refer you to Faeit 212 and his currently re-established website after it was proven that it was an abuse for GW to contact a webhost direct.

The fact is that for many years GW has been the biggest boy in the playground and thrown their weight around alot. However with genuine competition from companies like privateer and mantic (often formed by ex GW employees) people have started standing up to the bully and making him do what his claimed to be able to do for years.

Do we want to have to go through this - maybe not
Will we see their attitudes changing soon perhaps
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Re: GW Copywrite rules
« Reply #15 on: July 4, 2013, 04:45:38 PM »
Could someone, anyone, please provide an example of a 40k forum getting shut down because people posted statlines and points values in the course of ordinary discussion?

What about a forum being shut down because some one said that Space Marines are T4 with a 3+ armour save?

I'd argue theta the most important thing is to create a solid community rather than live in fear of GW's legal team.

If GW's legal team think that what's being posted fails to comply with their IP policy, then there is no solid community; in fact there is no community at all, as they just ask the host to pull the plug if the site owner refuses to comply to the letter with a cease and desist order.  Does that explain why we take the stance that we do?

As Changeyname points out above, that is a real possibility based on what they say on page three, so again, I have to say that the risk is too high.  Yes, we probably play it soo safe, but we're hardly 'waiting to pounce' as you put it ;).  Indeed my favourite days on the forum are when nobody posts excessive stats, so that I don't have to do any editing :).

I also agree that in generally you can just use good language to make your point in a discussion, but what if the discussion is about the stats?

Math hammer threads would be alot clearer if the poster could actually post what he means instead of saying "An autocannon str weapon VS a target with an guard toughness and a TEQ save plus an iron halo like invulnerable save."

Sure most of use know what I was saying above but it would have been alot clearer if I'd been able to just use the four numbers that I wanted to use.

There's nothing wrong with posting stats when they are abstract, and do not refer to any named model, or unit.

An example:

[insert number of hits here] S4 vs MEQ [insert your wound percentage results here]
[insert number of hits here] S4 vs TEQ [insert your wound percentage results here]

This would be if you wanted to assess the impact of S4 hits in general (i.e. not attributed to any unit or weapon) against MEQ/TEQ units.

If you want to used named weapons:

Autocannon: Average hits = x, average wounds vs GEQ =, average wounds vs MEQ =, average wound vs TEQ =

That's simple, and conveys the point, without using any stats about the Autocannon at all.

Quote
Also I don't see why people should always have their codex's to hand to be able to take part in such discussions, GW's policy doesn't seem to prohibit the posting of stats just the reproduction of their physical property, there must be a way to get a clear answer on this, perhaps looking at the policy's of other forums and seeing where they draw the line.

It's easy to remember most commonly used stats without having to keep looking at the codex ;).

I've already mentioned that other fora have the same rule regarding posting stat lines/points costs that Arquarian has quoted from our rules.  That is, however, not a guide for us.  As a private forum, the rules are determined by the site owner, not based on what other fora do, so there's always going to be some level of variance regarding the rules.

As I say, you're welcome to e-mail GW to ask for clarity, but I'm dubious as to how much you'll get.

I think that Changeyname's post covers everything else.


This is what makes this forum so inaccessible to new members.  Why would a person new to the hobby bother to read these forums when they can't understand what's being said?

The answer is that they wouldn't, and they don't, and that's why this place is in terminal decline.

The forum rules completely misunderstand IP law and GW's approach to protecting it.

Quoting rules and statistics in the course of discussion is perfectly fine as far as both the law and GW legal are concerned.  GW consider it a perfectly ordinary part of the hobby and they will confirm that if you email them.




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Re: GW Copyright rules
« Reply #16 on: July 4, 2013, 04:58:37 PM »
Could someone, anyone, please provide an example of a 40k forum getting shut down because people posted statlines and points values in the course of ordinary discussion?

You're missing the point.  The fact of the matter is that GW could decide to do just that, as is made clear in their IP policy, and so we take the safest path, owing to the fact that GW has monitored this forum before, has contacted the Staff before, and demanded changes to the forum before.  Posting statlines is posting their IP, so if they decide they don't like it, and threaten to shut the site down, we'd have a serious problem.

Quote
This is what makes this forum so inaccessible to new members.  Why would a person new to the hobby bother to read these forums when they can't understand what's being said?

The answer is that they wouldn't, and they don't, and that's why this place is in terminal decline.

The forum rules completely misunderstand IP law and GW's approach to protecting it.

Quoting rules and statistics in the course of discussion is perfectly fine as far as both the law and GW legal are concerned.  GW consider it a perfectly ordinary part of the hobby and they will confirm that if you email them.

All of this is speculation on your part, and you fail to take account of the alternative explanations that I, and others, have put to you in the past, including, but not limited to, an old server, and competition from Facebook, Twitter, and blogs, not forgetting a financial crisis.

Regarding e-mails to GW legal, I can assure you that, based on written e-mails other forum members here have sent to GW over the years, they do not provide the unambiguous answers you suggest when it comes to using their IP.  If you have an e-mail from their lawyers, and not just someone in their customer service department, which gives explicit permission for us to use their IP, then by all means feel free to share it here.

« Last Edit: July 4, 2013, 05:00:32 PM by Irisado »
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Re: GW Copywrite rules
« Reply #17 on: July 4, 2013, 05:12:54 PM »
I want to address one point that is constantly brought up every time this conversation comes up.
However mentioning in conversation that a Dire Avenger has a toughness of 3 is not

Where do you draw the line?  If it is permissible for you to specify the toughness, why cannot you not then go and mention the models strength?  If you allow T and ST to be mentioned, it's not too far of a stretch to add in attacks as well.  If you are going with those three, why stop there and prevent people from mentioning the WS as well?  Or their save?

Really what it comes down to is if you limit the amount people can say at any point, there will always be argument to go one step further.  So to err on the side of caution, we go with no stats.   You can argue against it and put in a measure saying "excessive stats aren't allowed," but again, all comes back to the question of what is the definition of excessive and whose definition do we go by?  Your idea of excessive may be 4 stats.  My definition of excessive is 1.
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Re: GW Copywrite rules
« Reply #18 on: July 5, 2013, 06:07:55 AM »
What I find particularly frustrating about all this is that this site does not seem to have a clear grasp of what is and isn't acceptable from a copyright point of view and instead just take a hard line based on opinion.
For instance I reported the use of links that showed photographs of the White Dwarf but the practice was allowed to continue even though this is a breach of copyright. As far as I am aware you are legally allowed to copy up to 5% or one chapter (whichever is greater) of a published book and use it for purposes of critique. Critique is essentially what is happening in the rules forum.
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Offline Wiggus

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Re: GW Copywrite rules
« Reply #19 on: July 5, 2013, 08:39:27 AM »
What I find particularly frustrating about all this is that this site does not seem to have a clear grasp of what is and isn't acceptable from a copyright point of view and instead just take a hard line based on opinion.
For instance I reported the use of links that showed photographs of the White Dwarf but the practice was allowed to continue even though this is a breach of copyright. As far as I am aware you are legally allowed to copy up to 5% or one chapter (whichever is greater) of a published book and use it for purposes of critique. Critique is essentially what is happening in the rules forum.
Where do you get this information, it is purely fictional there is no finite or definitive amount of what you can and cannot copy for critique or reviewing purposes in fact it varies from country to country and i believe state to state in the US. The reason why there isnt a clear grasp is because the law is intentionally vague for a reason. If you hold IP it is for you to make a representation when you feel that it is being broken, this is commonly done by a cease and desist letter where it should be made clear what the alleged breach has occurred and what they request be done to rectify it. if you feel that you havent thats when you take it to court and make representations before a judge.
Now in the past GW has used its big boy mentality to abuse the cease and desist method making outlandish requests and knowing that often one man band businesses or forum owners are unable to bear the financial cost of going through the courts.
As i said above we may see this start to change and a large amount of IP lawyers have started to offer pro bono work in lawsuits against GW however this by no means will guarantee that you will not be left with a financial burden. Now given that we all enjoy this forum for no cost at all is it fair to ask those that do pay to take the risk of being hit with a cease and desist or a court case to take the risk.
As is said in most cases posting statlines is often unnecessary and the only place for it being a proper well written review of a codex in line with what you can see in youtube videos from the likes of Beasts of war. 
My name is Steven Wilson
My friends call me Wiggy
My enemies call me Mr Wilson
You may call me Sir!
'Who Dares Wins'
'Better to be tried by 12 than carried by 6'
'I love being a writer; I just dont like the paper work'
'Don't make me angry, you wont like it when im angry'

 


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