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  • #46
    Originally posted by WorkerCaste
    The "look": Ambitious. Pushing the edge of what could be done for TV on the budget they had. As a result, sometimes looking somewhat "fake." I expected that this would improve as the investmemt in CGI models and virtual sets increased over time.

    At any rate, I liked it and saw great potential. I was disappointed it wasn't given a chance to develop. BTW, Shr'eshhhhhh, I seem to recall that WB actually lost the B5 CGI models, so that would account for the lack a familiar ships. Over time the could've recreated the models, but it probably wasn't in the cards for a pilot.
    I've always felt that B5 has this kind of an 80s aura to it. I didn't expect to see it in LOTR, but there it was again. I dunno, very weird. Might just be me.

    As for the losing of B5 CGI models, then I can believe that. WB has lost a lot, heh. Hell, I was watching the DVD releases and parts of the 1st season episodes are inferior in quality or are 4:3 squashed to 16:9. Fugly.

    Anyway, why didn't they buy the models from some volunteer? I mean, dozens of artists have made public domain replics of the 3D models used in the show. I've seen some VERY detailed ships.

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    • #47
      The B5 models used in the Star Wreck trailer look even better than the ones used in the show.
      I have the wings for Bingo.

      Comment


      • #48
        Originally posted by elver
        Anyway, why didn't they buy the models from some volunteer? I mean, dozens of artists have made public domain replics of the 3D models used in the show. I've seen some VERY detailed ships.
        Time and money, I would imagine. Why put money into something that would be there mostly to add an air of continuity? Also, it would take time for the models to be built. As far as buying something that had been built and was out there, that would be unlikely because those models probably infringe the copyright. The ship designs are intellectual property, and if they knew about someone using there designs without permission or compensation, they must do something about it in order to preserve their copyrights. Doing business with such entities would create a poor legal position for them.
        "That was the law, as set down by Valen. Three castes: worker, religious, warrior."

        Comment


        • #49
          Originally posted by WorkerCaste
          Time and money, I would imagine. Why put money into something that would be there mostly to add an air of continuity? Also, it would take time for the models to be built. As far as buying something that had been built and was out there, that would be unlikely because those models probably infringe the copyright. The ship designs are intellectual property, and if they knew about someone using there designs without permission or compensation, they must do something about it in order to preserve their copyrights. Doing business with such entities would create a poor legal position for them.
          It falls under fan fiction, basically. You can take a ship design from B5 and recreate it freely as long as you don't profit from it. So in other words, public domain with a disclaimer saying that WB/JMS own this design is okay. Same with fan fiction. You can, if you want to, write a fan fiction story about the erotic adventures of Sinclair and G'Kar and as long as you add a disclaimer saying that WB/JMS own these characters and you show that you don't profit from your work, it's alright. (Although, with a story like that, you should add a note telling that neither JMS nor WB endorse it.)
          Last edited by elver; 11-08-2004, 11:43 AM.

          Comment


          • #50
            Originally posted by elver
            It falls under fan fiction, basically.
            Hmmmm. I'm nowhere near expert in these sorts of things, (though some who frequent this site seem very knowledgable ) but I wouldn't see it as the same as fan fiction. At the very least, in fan fiction the majority of the fan created work is orginal. The story itself. In the case of reproducing the CGI models, the end result is virtually indistinguishable from the original work. Copyright infringement does not require that a profit be made. As an example, a non-profit agency could not legally use the image of Mickey Mouse in any way, even decoration in their office, unless the creation of the image was licensed or allowed by the Disney Company.
            "That was the law, as set down by Valen. Three castes: worker, religious, warrior."

            Comment


            • #51
              "a non-profit agency could not legally use the image of Mickey Mouse in any way, even decoration in their office, unless the creation of the image was licensed or allowed by the Disney Company." Originally posted by Worker Caste.

              A non-profit organisation a charity for example can still make money. (they just don't keep it)


              However if a political cartoon came out with said rodent it would be classed as satire and is allowed under copyright laws. There have been cases where fine artists have used images like Mickey Mouse in gallery art and corporations have sued. Some win but most don't.

              When it comes to fan fiction and humour such as Star Wreck and the very funny Pink Five, As long you don't attempt to make money from it, nobody prosecutes them. Lucasfilm at first were quite positive about the fan re-edits of The Phantom Menace but soon they were popping up all over the place and some dishonest opportunists attempted to sell them.

              I'm not sure what JMS's view is on fan fiction and fan films. I know he doesn't like people sending him ideas because he might have already came up with that idea and won't be able to use it in case a court case ensued.

              I'm also not sure if fan fiction authors could legitimatly claim authorship and therefore copywrite to their work. I don't mean to claim money (as the original copywrite holder would have claim to all money generated by his idea)
              But would they have the right to take someone to court for plagerising a piece of fan fiction?

              Is there a Lawyer in the house?

              Anyway the point was there are alot of very good fan made models out on the web and being fans some may even wish to donate them for free if it meant seeing their loving recreation of a bit of that ole B5 magic in a real B5 show. Dunno if that's the case, it would be interesting to find out.

              With the near professional level of fan made CGI, amateur film making and acting I've seen. A big budget style amateur feature has to be on the cards soon.
              I have the wings for Bingo.

              Comment


              • #52
                Originally posted by elver
                It falls under fan fiction, basically. You can take a ship design from B5 and recreate it freely as long as you don't profit from it. So in other words, public domain with a disclaimer saying that WB/JMS own this design is okay. Same with fan fiction. You can, if you want to, write a fan fiction story about the erotic adventures of Sinclair and G'Kar and as long as you add a disclaimer saying that WB/JMS own these characters and you show that you don't profit from your work, it's alright. (Although, with a story like that, you should add a note telling that neither JMS nor WB endorse it.)
                Amy is our is our expert when it comes to copyright infringement but I know the bottom line is that under *no* circumstances are any B5 images or characters or logos or anything else "public domain". That term has a specific legal definition and it doesn't have anything to do with whether a profit is made or not. Therefore, a fan cannot use those images and offer them to anybody because they don't belong to the fan in the first place.

                As to whether something is prosecuted or not, that's a completely different issue. For instance, JMS specifically went to bat for folks who have/had B5 websites with WB legal affairs. What it came down to was that as long as the copyright info regarding the show was prominently displayed, WB wouldn't make them take it down. I've heard of other shows where that's not the case. It's (I believe) completely up to the copyright owner.

                Amy, dear? Am I right here? I know I'm nowhere near as knowledgeable as you are!

                Jan
                "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

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                • #53
                  *bows before her majesty Aisling who is accompanied as always by the Narn Bat Squad*
                  It's good to be the queen.



                  Amy (the artist formerly known as Aisling)

                  Comment


                  • #54
                    Phew! Okay! Well, rather than commenting on every single person's reply - many of which had very good information in them - I'll stick mostly with Elver's original post addressing the subject of copyright. There are a couple of other bits I'll pick up as we go along, but this is mostly in response to Elver.

                    And Elver, since I'm pretty sure you haven't been around here as long as some of us, I'll just give you a brief summary of my credentials: I worked in the music business, in a copyright and licensing capacity, for about a dozen years. Even though I'm now a web designer, I do still keep up with current US Copyright law and legislation, so I'm pretty much the authority here. While I'm not a lawyer, I have more years of experience working with US and international copyright laws than many entertainment attorneys currently practicing in the field, so I'm fairly confident of the opinions I make in this regard.

                    Okay, on to the post:

                    It falls under fan fiction, basically. You can take a ship design from B5 and recreate it freely as long as you don't profit from it. So in other words, public domain with a disclaimer saying that WB/JMS own this design is okay.
                    First of all, both fan fiction and the re-creating of ships are both types of copyright and trademark infringement. An infringement (based on US and many other countries' laws) is not determined by whether or not any profit has been made, or any money has been collected. The presence or absence of money having changed hands will only affect the terms of the court settlement or fee. Obviously, if an infringer has profited hugely, they'll be charged a much larger fee than a "Joe Schmoe" infringer who just happens to have some trademarked logos on his personal website.

                    And, just as with the money issue, whether or not you label the infringement with a disclaimer about ownership doesn't affect whether or not it is an infringement. It's no better, or more legal, to infringe on a copyright if you post the name of the copyright owner.

                    Same with fan fiction. You can, if you want to, write a fan fiction story about the erotic adventures of Sinclair and G'Kar and as long as you add a disclaimer saying that WB/JMS own these characters and you show that you don't profit from your work, it's alright. (Although, with a story like that, you should add a note telling that neither JMS nor WB endorse it.)
                    This is not true. You _cannot_ write a fan fiction story about the erotic adventures of Sinclair and G'Kar. Besides the fact that I will hunt you down and hurt you <g>, it is an infringement of copyright. Whether or not you post a disclaimer about who owns the characters.

                    The reason fan fiction seems to exist in a separate, un-prosecutable realm than other infringements, has been discussed here before. Mainly, it's because with fan fiction, there is very little possibility that the property will be tangibly damaged by it. That is, no one who reads fan fiction on a website, or downloads it from a website, or buys a stapled copy of it at a convention, is likely to mistake the fan fiction for a legitimate, licensed Babylon 5 product. Because of both the likely subject matter (usually sex between characters, whether the same sex or different sexes or different species), and the quality level of the presentation or production.

                    I'm also not sure if fan fiction authors could legitimatly claim authorship and therefore copywrite to their work. I don't mean to claim money (as the original copywrite holder would have claim to all money generated by his idea)
                    But would they have the right to take someone to court for plagerising a piece of fan fiction?
                    Shr'eshhhhhh, this is an interesting question. Certainly, the author of such a fan fiction (one they believe has been infringed upon) could bring suit against another party, and the decision would depend on the judge and their interpretation of the law, and their judgement of the particular case. But...oh, let me make this into an example so it'll be easier to understand:

                    Let's say that someone authored a fan fiction about Susan and Talia having all kinds of sex (there's _tons_ of fan fiction on this subject out there), amidst a plot about them traveling to the rim of the galaxy and saving known space from a horrible space duck, by the use of amazing telepathic powers. Now let's say that some enterprising young filmmaker comes out with a film about two women, lovers, both telepathic, who travel to the rim of the galaxy and save known space from a horrible space duck by the use of amazing telepathic powers. But the lead characters are not Susan and Talia.

                    Okay, so we have the author of the Susan/Talia fanfic taking the filmmaker to court, based on the _original_ component of their story.

                    Now....by bringing this up for public scrutiny, they've opened themselves right up to a lawsuit which probably would never have happened if they'd only written a fanfic that was on a website somewhere. But let's say that the judge in this case decides on the part of the fanfic author, and the filmmaker is required to pay the fanfic author a million dollars in damages. Don't you think that the WB will come right up and say that the million dollars rightly belongs to _them_, as the original story would never have been written without the impetus that a fan had to write about Susan and Talia?

                    So while the fanfic author _could_ sue, they probably would end up losing most - if not all - of the damages they might manage to collect.

                    And, small point but one that bugs me: it's "copyright" and not "copywrite." Think of it this way: it's a legal _right_, and while it does in fact protect people who _write_, it isn't _just_ for authors: it's also for composers, and visual artists, and programmers, etc. etc.

                    Now this one is from Jan:

                    Amy is our is our expert when it comes to copyright infringement but I know the bottom line is that under *no* circumstances are any B5 images or characters or logos or anything else "public domain". That term has a specific legal definition and it doesn't have anything to do with whether a profit is made or not.
                    True, but it's usually "fair use" that people get confused about with regard to whether or not a profit has been made. "Public domain" is something else entirely, and also has its share of misunderstandings. Something that is in the public domain is, simply, something that is not protected by copyright law in a particular territory. So that can mean something that was once protected, but whose protection has now expired; or it can mean something that was never eligible for protection under any copyright law. Examples of that are short phrases and names (those are eligible for trademark protection instead), the information that is in a calendar, on a clock, on a multiplication table, etc. That's freely available information, and while someone might copyright their _presentation_ of it (see any Hallmark calendar, or calendar by a famous artist), the actual information about the days and dates is not copyrightable.

                    The material that makes up the Babylon 5 universe is not in the public domain, and will not be for a VERY long time.

                    As for "fair use," that's the thing that people sometimes think their particular use is covered under. "Fair use" is an exception to US copyright law, and whether or not something falls under its aegis has little or nothing to do with whether or not any money has changed hands. Fair use was mainly set up to accomodate direct teaching and critique/review situations. If you're reviewing a book, you have to be able to quote from it. If you're teaching about a symphony, you have to be able to use excerpts from the score in your teaching materials.

                    Um... I think that's about the gist of what I meant to say. Is anyone still awake? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?

                    Amy
                    Last edited by AmyG; 11-08-2004, 07:46 PM.

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                    • #55
                      Originally posted by AislingGrey
                      Um... I think that's about the gist of what I meant to say. Is anyone still awake? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?
                      I am. But then, I've heard this song before.

                      Jan
                      "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

                      Comment


                      • #56
                        zzzzzzzzz...oooohhh!!!! Yes maam, the correct answer is 7.
                        I had the dagger in my hand! And he has the indecency to start dying on his own.

                        Comment


                        • #57
                          "zzzzzzzzz...oooohhh!!!! Yes maam, the correct answer is 7" Originally posted By Cruiser.

                          Yeah but now we have to build a giant planet sized computer to work out what the question was.
                          I have the wings for Bingo.

                          Comment


                          • #58
                            The thing that bugs me about all the different forms of Fan production, fan fiction. fan films, fan edits, etc etc is that some of it is really good.

                            Why can't all these girls and guys get together and make something totally new?
                            The Blair Witch Project (which I think was awful btw) managed to rake in millions on the shoe stringist of budgets. If all these different groups pooled their resources they could make something that looked as good as a hollywood special effects blow out, have a cast of complete unknowns, be written by fresh talent and cost next to nothing. If it found the right distributor it could do well and rather than having all the profits going to some big corporation somewhere alot of it would go to the people making it. And they all would have professional work on their C.V. which could launch them into the industry.

                            Am I sounding like the Karl Marx of fan fiction?

                            Fan fiction writers of the world unite the only thing you have to lose is the chain binding you to someone elses idea!
                            I have the wings for Bingo.

                            Comment


                            • #59
                              Amy, thanks for the info! You truly are a queen, and I always pick up some new tidbits from your explanations. I find the ins and outs of this things fascinating, so no snoozing here!

                              Shr'eshhhhhh, I agree wholeheartedly that it is a shame more of these talented people don't strike out in new territory. I have no doubt that some of them will, and I wish them success.
                              "That was the law, as set down by Valen. Three castes: worker, religious, warrior."

                              Comment


                              • #60
                                Great info Amy.

                                I do have a question though.

                                Since the internet has greatly made this world a lot smaller, how do US copyright laws affect someone like Shr'eshhhhhh and the others here who live in England or other foreign lands? What happens if they post something a copyright holder wishes to take action on to a server in another country even though folks here in the US have easy access to it?
                                Got movies? www.filmbuffonline.com

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