Re: Rules for submitting licenses for review
On 8/27/05, Sean Kellogg <email@example.com> wrote:
> On Saturday 27 August 2005 07:10 pm, Ken Arromdee wrote:
> > Some searching on the Copyright Office's website showed me this:
> > http://www.copyright.gov/fls/fl108.html
> > "Once a game has been made public, nothing in the copyright law prevents
> > others from developing another game based on similar principles."
> Hmmm... interesting. Now I wish I still worked at WotC to ask them what they
> think about this. My gut says their response would go something like this:
> "The Copyright's office isn't a court of law, so they can't just say what is
> and is not copyrightable."
> Some fine legal reasoning, to be sure :)
Remind you that "thinness" is an issue, when it comes to how copyright
cases are judged.
I'm pretty sure that an identical game could be protected by copyright, even
if the rules describing that game were completely different in the tangible
But similar games? The line between an identical game and a similar game
is a judgement call.
This is complicated by the fact that WotC expects that individuals will put
invest significant creativity of their own into games. They're producing more
of a game-making kit than an actual game. They probably have only partial
copyright on the actual games that get played.
Anyways, they still have some copyright protection, but it's clear from the
OGL license FAQ that they recognize that they want more protection than
is provided by law.
Not that any of their blustering about their copyright protection is