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Delekahn
January 31st, 2005, 16:21
Hi,
I am almost done with my conversion of The Sunless Citadel. I was thinking that before I tried to post it, I should verify that I do not break any laws. Is it legal to distribute this mod?
Thanks,
Delekahn

richvalle
January 31st, 2005, 18:01
You know... I was wondering about that too when I saw your earlier post. I think if its something that people have to pay to use, then no you can't (or shouldn't). Converting it for your own use would be fine of course as is doing any free ones that are offered.

My view anyway.

rv

Visigodo
January 31st, 2005, 18:19
Im curious about this stuff to. Supose that i convert some Adventure from Dungeon Magazine and then i decide to share it, is this legal or not.

Ged
January 31st, 2005, 18:47
My guess is that without written consent to use copyrighted material, you shouldn't make it public, unless otherwise told in the copyright statement. Completely differnt issue is, of course, if you wish to give your private conversion available to the publisher to distribute as a digital extenstion to their product. Yet other publishers might consider their business that of creating hardcopies and be less jealous of the "fan base" making their products more visible in the market...

To quote richvalle, my view anyway :)

msd
February 1st, 2005, 14:55
I am a law student, but not a lawyer.

The following is not to be construed as legal advice or as expressly or impliedly creating a client attorney relationship.

Whew...I hate that. :lol:

To the best of my understanding and according to the letter of the law, a conversion is most likely a derivative work and once posted to a website, constitutes a violation of:

1) The right to copy
2) The right to create derivative works
3) The right to distribute

The outstanding question in my mind is whether posting a conversion is defensible as "fair use". For a number of reasons in my mind, I believe that it is, but I wholly admit that reasonable people could differ and that a reasonable person who differ's with me might be a seasoned copyright attorney.

The one piece of advice I will give.

I think we, as the community, need a collective answer to this question. Individual posters don't want to be liable for posting work that violates copyright violations and SmiteWorks certainly does not want (or should not want at least) to be held liable for hosting violating works.

I think the best thing we can do is to compose a group letter as "fans" of FG to WoTC and simply ask straight up what the policy is and where they stand. I would think that SmiteWorks would be interesting in joining this effort as well if for no other reason so than that they can formulate a Armory posting policy that conforms to US and international copyright law.

My sense is that we will get a quicker, more thoughtful response if we ask as a group...

Let me know what you guys think.

-Matt

Durak
February 1st, 2005, 15:13
If the quest is from a pay for product then i think only the buyer of that book can host the game. And cannot share it, as that would be breaking copyright.

Cause all your doing is playing then is the quest based on one book. But if you share, what your doing is copying the book and giving it out free. Which i doubt anyone would like in the wotsc or any other publisher.

The Free downloadable quests off the wotsc website are fine, cause they are open. Anyone can access them.

Dundjinni maps need certain things on them before can be shared, namely a compass icon and saying how it map made.

Legacy
February 1st, 2005, 15:49
I cannot speak in terms of Dundjinn but in terms of the SRD - basically anything that's in the SRD or is released under the OGL and designated Open Content should be usable with appropriate reference to the OGL. I am in no way or form an expert in the usage of OGL but every d20 product comes with an OGL statement and part of the OGL specifies what is open content and what is copy righted. I am a sw architect, not a lawyer! :)

In terms of the module, my guess is most of it is copyrighted - mine is packed away somewhere. I know Code Monkey Publishing has the rights to convert all Wizards content into data sets for E-Tools and PC Gen.

hmmm... just went and dug up the OGL... SRD Reference (http://www.systemreferencedocuments.org/35/sovelior_sage/legal.html). This is also a great resource for the core d20 content that is open source!

And of course the official source... Wizards SRD (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=d20/welcome.).

Cheers,
BTS

msd
February 1st, 2005, 16:12
The Free downloadable quests off the wotsc website are fine, cause they are open. Anyone can access them.

This doesn't matter...whether the work is made available free or at cost has no bearing on the legal question of whether copyright rights vest in the author of the work. This is a settled proposition without dispute in American copyright law.

Hope that clarifies that issue.

-Matt

Delekahn
February 1st, 2005, 16:16
Hello,
I emailed Wizards cumstomer suppot:


Hello,
I own the DnD module The Sunless Citadel. I also
own the program Fantasy Grounds. I converted The
Sunless Citadel for use with my campaign in Fantasy
Grounds.
I would like permission to post my conversion on the
Fatasy Grounds forums, so that other people can use
it. Would this be possible?
If allowed, I also own The Forge of Fury, The
Speaker in Dreams, and The Standing Stone. I would
like to convert/post these as well.

Thank you for your time,

Delekahn
Here is the reply I received:


Hello there,

You'll need to write a physical mail with your request to:

Attn: Licensing
Wizards of the Coast
PO Box 707
Renton, WA 98057-0707

Good luck!


I think MSD'd idea of a group letter is a great idea. Personally, I don't think I have a shot in hell of getting permission. Maybe they could post my conversion. They would probably charge $6 a pop though.

I don't want Wizard's to loose money on a mod. I wonder how long until they become a type of public domain. I can't see them getting upset if we convert the Giants series, but these newer mods may still be an issue.

Later,
Delekahn

Elric
February 2nd, 2005, 00:09
I sent Wizards an email also regarding doing *OLD OOP* Adventures such as Tomb of Horrors, Against the Giants/Descent/Vault/Queen of the Demonweb Pits and the Slaver series.

I just sent it tonight (before actually seeing this thread) so obviously I haven't heard anything back yet.

WolfStar76
February 2nd, 2005, 16:04
The code monkeys are working on a Fantasy-Grounds like program it seems for these "Adventure path" modules such as Sunless Citadel.

Given that they have the rights to create/publish/sell this on behalf of Wizards, I'm *guessing* that Wizards won't want us distributing the modules ourselves - for free or otherwise.

I'd agree with whomever posted that fair use would likely allows us to convert the module and *personally* host it, but letting anyone else host it would be out.

I should mention that I'm not a Lawyer, though I do work for an Intellectual Proerty law firm. However this post is pure opinion, and should not be construed as legal advice. (They make me say that)

Elric
February 2nd, 2005, 20:58
I sent Wizards an email also regarding doing *OLD OOP* Adventures such as Tomb of Horrors, Against the Giants/Descent/Vault/Queen of the Demonweb Pits and the Slaver series.

I just sent it tonight (before actually seeing this thread) so obviously I haven't heard anything back yet.
I received word back today from WoTC that I could convert any Old OOP module to a Fantasy Grounds module - provided it's for my own use and not for distribution. I can have players play my module(s) with me - I just can't offer them for download.

Durak
February 3rd, 2005, 10:38
Thats the way i thought they would have done it Elric.

So now we just have to join Elrics 1ed group unless you can make own quests.



Whats so good about 1st ed?
THAC0 :(



I only played 2nd ed from the SSI computer games. And have all the 3.5 and some 3.0 books.

CMP Mynex
February 10th, 2005, 06:52
The code monkeys are working on a Fantasy-Grounds like program it seems for these "Adventure path" modules such as Sunless Citadel.

Given that they have the rights to create/publish/sell this on behalf of Wizards, I'm *guessing* that Wizards won't want us distributing the modules ourselves - for free or otherwise.

I'd agree with whomever posted that fair use would likely allows us to convert the module and *personally* host it, but letting anyone else host it would be out.

I should mention that I'm not a Lawyer, though I do work for an Intellectual Proerty law firm. However this post is pure opinion, and should not be construed as legal advice. (They make me say that)


Okay.. First off, Hi all, I'm the #1 Evil Monkey reference above as "the code monkeys" (and it's Code Monkey Publishing or CMP, btw, see the sig. ;))

Couple of things here for you...

1. Adventure Path is closed content. This means that you can NOT create derivitive works (i.e. FG sets) for distribution, but can for personal use only.

2. Open Gaming Content - This is a tough one to sum up, but do a search for "OGL" or "Open Gamin License" on the wizards boards and give em a good read... some of it is usual legal mumbo jumbo, but there are bits that are fairly well "Plain English" written... If you're going to do ANY conversions to FG of ANY RPG for 3.0 or 3.5 editions of D&D you _must_ understand how this works.

3. We're not doing a network type thing like FG is, we're doing what we're calling "Interactive Adventures" for "at the gaming table use"... very different implementation than what FG is doing.

However.... (yea, this is the part you really want to read anyways :D)

A user of FG (Dare I say addict *grin*) has been in contact with us... someone from FG sent us an email as well (which I did respond to!) about working together...

I can't commit to whether we (CMP) are allowed to convert/create the modules for FG's, that's a final call from Wizards... but we _can_ do it, we have that level of simian technology! :D

Even if, in the end, Wizards says no, there are a number of other publishers we work with that would be keen on this type of thing...

So I'll use my special Monkey Martial Art form "Sum Flung Poo" and see what kind of hits I get... :twisted:

>Edited to make #1 a little clearer<

Aesir
February 10th, 2005, 08:46
Could someone from Fantasy Grounds or Smite Works please post the EULA for the FULL license version (and 'Lite' version, if they differ) for Fantasy Grounds here? I only have the Demo version of the product, and wish to see what publishing options a licensed owner would hold.

Thank you.

richvalle
February 10th, 2005, 14:38
Good lord, who let the monkeys in? :)

Robert... I have a ? about:
"1. Adventure Path is closed content. This means that you can NOT create derivitive works (i.e. FG sets) for distribution, personal use only."

Does that mean you can not create those adventures EVEN for personal use or personal use is ok?

Needless to say I hope you can and will make material for FG.

Thanks,

Richard

richvalle
February 10th, 2005, 14:40
Could someone from Fantasy Grounds or Smite Works please post the EULA for the FULL license version (and 'Lite' version, if they differ) for Fantasy Grounds here? I only have the Demo version of the product, and wish to see what publishing options a licensed owner would hold.

Thank you.

I made a copy of the license txt that shows up when you do the install. I think that is what you are looking for?

I don't think SmiteWorks will care if that is posted. If I don't hear a 'don't do it' I'll put it up at MSD's website later today and post a link for you.

rv

Aesir
February 10th, 2005, 17:16
Yes, I only ask for the end user license agreement text. Not a license or registration key number for installing the program.

As far as I can tell, the EULA text posted publicly would be something that is desirable by both Smite Works and the user community interested in purchase, but if there's a concern, feel free to PM me here with the text of it.

Thanks!

richvalle
February 10th, 2005, 18:33
I've uploaded it. Find it here:

http://www.adventuresomedreams.com/forums/showthread.php?t=64

rv

Aesir
February 10th, 2005, 22:27
Got it, thank you RV

Dupre
February 12th, 2005, 23:25
Could someone from Fantasy Grounds or Smite Works please post the EULA for the FULL license version (and 'Lite' version, if they differ) for Fantasy Grounds here?

Here it is:

END USER LICENSE AGREEMENT FOR FANTASY GROUNDS

NOTICE TO USERS: CAREFULLY READ THE FOLLOWING LEGAL AGREEMENT. USE OF THE FANTASY GROUNDS SOFTWARE PROVIDED WITH THIS AGREEMENT (THE "SOFTWARE") CONSTITUTES YOUR ACCEPTANCE OF THESE TERMS. IF YOU DO NOT AGREE TO THE TERMS OF THIS AGREEMENT, DO NOT INSTALL AND/OR USE THIS SOFTWARE. USER'S USE OF THIS SOFTWARE IS CONDITIONED UPON COMPLIANCE BY USER WITH THE TERMS OF THIS AGREEMENT.

1. LICENSE GRANT. SmiteWorks, Ltd. grants you a license to use one copy of the version of this SOFTWARE on any one system for as many licenses as you purchase. "You" means the company, entity or individual whose funds are used to pay the license fee. "Use" means storing, loading, installing, executing or displaying the SOFTWARE. You may not modify the SOFTWARE or disable any licensing or control features of the SOFTWARE except as an intended part of the SOFTWARE's programming features. This license is not transferable to any other system, or to another organization or individual.

2. OWNERSHIP. The SOFTWARE is owned and copyrighted by SmiteWorks, Ltd. Your license confers no title or ownership in the SOFTWARE and should not be construed as a sale of any right in the SOFTWARE .

3. COPYRIGHT. The SOFTWARE is protected by copyright law of Finland and international treaty provisions. You acknowledge that no title to the intellectual property in the SOFTWARE is transferred to you. You further acknowledge that title and full ownership rights to the SOFTWARE will remain the exclusive property of SmiteWorks, Ltd and you will not acquire any rights to the SOFTWARE except as expressly set forth in this license. You agree that any copies of the SOFTWARE will contain the same proprietary notices which appear on and in the SOFTWARE.

4. REVERSE ENGINEERING. You agree that you will not attempt to reverse compile, modify, translate, or disassemble the SOFTWARE in whole or in part.

5. NO OTHER WARRANTIES. SMITEWORKS, LTD DOES NOT WARRANT THAT THE SOFTWARE IS ERROR FREE. THE SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED "AS IS" WIHTOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, EITHER EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE AND NONINFRINGEMENT OF THIRD PARTY RIGHTS. SOME JURISDICTIONS DO NOT ALLOW THE EXCLUSION OF IMPLIED WARRANTIES OR LIMITATIONS ON HOW LONG AN IMPLIED WARRANTY MAY LAST, OR THE EXCLUSION OR LIMITATION OF INCIDENTAL OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES, SO THE ABOVE LIMITATIONS OR EXCLUSIONS MAY NOT APPLY TO YOU. THIS WARRANTY GIVES YOU SPECIFIC LEGAL RIGHTS AND YOU MAY ALSO HAVE OTHER RIGHTS WHICH VARY FROM JURISDICTION TO JURISDICTION.

6. SEVERABILITY. In the event of invalidity of any provision of this license, the parties agree that such invalidity shall not affect the validity of the remaining portions of this license.

7. NO LIABILITY FOR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES. IN NO EVENT SHALL SMITEWORKS, LTD OR ITS SUPPLIERS BE LIABLE TO YOU FOR ANY CONSEQUENTIAL, SPECIAL, INCIDENTAL OR INDIRECT DAMAGES OF ANY KIND ARISING OUT OF THE DELIVERY, PERFORMANCE OR USE OF THE SOFTWARE, EVEN IF SMITEWORKS, LTD HAS BEEN ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES. IN NO EVENT WILL SMITEWORKS, LTD'S LIABILITY FOR ANY CLAIM, WHETHER IN CONTRACT, TORT OR ANY OTHER THEORY OF LIABILITY, EXCEED THE LICENSE FEE PAID BY YOU, IF ANY.

8. GOVERNING LAW. This license will be governed by the laws of Finland as they are applied to agreements between Finland residents entered into and to be performed entirely within Finland. The United Nations Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods is specifically disclaimed.

9. ENTIRE AGREEMENT. This is the entire agreement between you and SmiteWorks, Ltd which supersedes any prior agreement or understanding, whether written or oral, relating to the subject matter of this license.

IF YOU DO NOT AGREE TO ALL OF THESE TERMS AND CONDITIONS, DO NOT INSTALL, USE OR DISTRIBUTE THIS SOFTWARE PRODUCT.

(C)SmiteWorks, Ltd. 2004.

Bagpuss2
February 12th, 2005, 23:30
4. REVERSE ENGINEERING. You agree that you will not attempt to reverse compile, modify, translate, or disassemble the SOFTWARE in whole or in part.

I take it that's talking about the FantasyGrounds.exe not the XML stuff or else all these rulesets we are coming up with using the d20 XML are illegal.

Elric
February 13th, 2005, 00:28
In my definition 'Reverse Engineering' means something that has been compiled into machine code being reversed back into editable code.

Dupre
February 13th, 2005, 13:05
The clause is about compiled components of the software; looking into the inner workings of the software by i.e. running it in a debugger and/or modifying the executable or library(dll) files that come with the software.

One of the functionalities of the software is to be able to support external resources made by others and these are outside the scope of our EULA. The EULA does not limit what kind of content you create or what you decide to do with it, be it internal use, sharing it for free or selling it.