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*lol* Dwarven Forge Style Catacomb Masters on ebay...
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TOPIC: *lol* Dwarven Forge Style Catacomb Masters on ebay...
#31531
*lol* Dwarven Forge Style Catacomb Masters on ebay... 6 Years ago  
Not even if you "just" sell to gamers. "Potential market" implies selling to anyone.

If you were selling a substantially similar product in a completely separate market that the original producer (the plaintiff) hadn't pursued -- in the back of "Vogue", for example -- wouldn't that be an effect on a potential market? "Vogue" readers who bought the SSP wouldn't be buying the original (might even think that the original was the knock-off), which is a clear effect on the (potential) market.
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#31532
*lol* Dwarven Forge Style Catacomb Masters on ebay... 6 Years ago  
True, true, but I was trying to confine myself to the facts of imaginable circumstances here -- I can't imagine someone copying DF and trying to sell it to anyone but gamers/hobbyists.

I actually find the "potential market" debate really fascinatingly circular. You'll have cases where someone is alleging the existence of a potential market that only exists if the court denies that a particular activity is fair use. If it IS fair use, then of course there is no market there.

For example -- what if college professors want to photocopy professional journal articles to distribute in class? Is that fair use? Well, what if a journal wants to start a side business of selling "course pack" anthologies of selected works it knows will be useful to faculty teaching seminars to college seniors? That seems like an obvious potential market for a journal, but if a court rules that faculty should be able to freely circulate works like this in the name of research, then this is fair use and there's no market there.

So, basically, you ask if there's a potential market to determine (or at least to provide some evidence regarding) whether a particular use is "fair", but to know whether or not a potential market exists we have to know whether or not the court considers the use fair.

To make it more relevant: suppose someone makes a photo guide of DF products, by photographing a collection and several layouts and then printing out and collecting the photos. They leave copies in the FLGS, hoping to stimulate business for DF; maybe they put up a website as well. Stefan and Jeff suffer huge personality distortions, becoming ferociously litigious, and sue. Now, this is a clear cut case, I think -- though DF has never indicated it wants to sell this sort of thing, it's a logical market for them to pursue. Therefore, if a court finds this to be a legitimate potential market, they wouldn't find it to be fair use. Of course, if they find it to be fair use, there's no market there, because DF would hardly be able to sell catalogues to people if everyone could just get them for free. So it's a circle. (though in this case, courts would have no problem finding this to be infringement, this is an established market long-since recognized)

I love that part of copyright law.

L
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#31533
*lol* Dwarven Forge Style Catacomb Masters on ebay... 6 Years ago  
Right now there are 14 different auctions on e-bay (by 5 different sellers) citing "Dwarven Forge" in the title of their auctions, though none of them are actual DF products

As an obsessive Dwarven Forge e-bay checker, I can tell you that in the past year or more, this is has been the norm....
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#31534
*lol* Dwarven Forge Style Catacomb Masters on ebay... 6 Years ago  
Heh heh heh.. well, I'm gonna have some of my stuff up there soon enough .. . .totally broke, new baby, and need $ (and space) for ROTA -- so I am finally accepting that my bowtie sets are going to have to be replaced by, not supplemented by, the bowtieless ones.

I mean, with some exceptions. But basic building elements... yeah.. I need the money and the room....

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#31535
*lol* Dwarven Forge Style Catacomb Masters on ebay... 6 Years ago  
Interesting to read about the various approaches to copyright infringements - keep it coming! I'm a translator, photographer, sometimes writer, and therefore quite aware of what the copyright laws say about that segment, and mostly from a Swedish perspective, which has some significant differences compared to American laws.
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#31536
*lol* Dwarven Forge Style Catacomb Masters on ebay... 6 Years ago  
I'm guessing that the consensus is that he's FINE to create stuff 'in the style of', but we all agree that using the DF name, especially in a negative way (DF don't make this..., fill a gap), is, whilst not technically wrong, a little mean. As we would say in UK, "It's just not cricket". Most gamers get behind the 'little' companies (no offence), so we decent murderers of orcs and dragons find this behaviour a little disloyal.

DF weren't the first 3D terrain makers and they won't be the last, but in my opinion, whilst there ARE gaps in the ranges, they produce the best terrain out there. Especially with the exponential increase in products over the past 4 years.

In UK there is such a thing as a 'passing off' law, which means you would have some problems creating a business called Elvish Smithy and a range called Nooks of Naughtiness. By 'passing' yourself off as another company by close association like that you can 'get done'.

Anyway, if we had 2,500 bucks free we'd all be buying shedloads of DF rather than master moulds for 8 pieces (Just don't let my wife read that it...)
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#31537
*lol* Dwarven Forge Style Catacomb Masters on ebay... 6 Years ago  
Stefan

Let me know if you need a German translator. I'm happy to help.


As most here know - I've been doing 'my own masters' and have sold 'Dwarven Forge Style/compatible' pieces on E-Bay myself. To me this was hobby and an attempt to get back some of my material costs - yep - the Ice Cavern cost me $400 to make in raw materials for three sets. I did make $100 for one of them - and didn't bother to sell off another one but rather kept two.

But I always saw my work to adding to DF - rather advertising for them. After all - I never made more as a few pieces and in most cases didn't even break even on material cost (yep - off cource kept a few pieces myself).

And I was proud when my son earlier this year did his first 20 pound on E-Bay with a cavern-prison cell - yep - we sold three of them.

So when listings like that threaten this in the future because masters are sold with the intend to build up a business the line which I try not to cross is blatently ignored. It increases the risk that I some day would fall on the black side of DF - nothing I'm interested in.

Not good at all ...

Thod

PS: Guess that someone like Yan Solo falls into the same group as myself.

PPS: Wow - I have my own sculpted mine set. There are 12 different 4*4 inch floors and at 6 different free standing walls. These masters must be worth a fortune (please note - sarcasm at work)
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#31538
*lol* Dwarven Forge Style Catacomb Masters on ebay... 6 Years ago  
Okay, what are the actual issues here?

Using the Dwarven Forge name is clearly over the line, if not legally actionable. That's obvious.

Are we also upset that someone created molds at all, and is selling them?
Or that he made them using the same dimensions as Dwarven Forge?
Or that he is a forum-goer?
Or that he or someone else might try to enter the MIT market?
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#31539
*lol* Dwarven Forge Style Catacomb Masters on ebay... 6 Years ago  
I'm upset that he's a capricorn...

Seriously, people can't be upset about the dimensions. If that were the case TSR would've been royally p***ed with every 25mm figure maker out there, back at the 'beginning'.

I just think that people are (rightly) protective of DF and don't want 'others' cashing in on S&J's hard work.

In reality, the guy's just been a little thoughtless/tactless with his terminology and references, but for many, this is a matter of the heart.

The bottom line, for me anyway, is that he's NOT trying to pass it OFF as DF, just informing us that it'd work in conjunction with it. Yeah, he could've phrased it better. But equally, some might see it as a mark of respect - choosing to make his products fit with the DF rather than Ainsty or A.N.Other. (I said SOME!)
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#31540
*lol* Dwarven Forge Style Catacomb Masters on ebay... 6 Years ago  
It is also better for DF if competitors use the same scale and dimensions. When brands are compatible, buyers can mix and match, and the money is distributed among the competitors. When brands are not compatible, buyers will not cross over (as frequently) and "brand loyalty" becomes a matter of functionality rather than personal preference.
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#31541
*lol* Dwarven Forge Style Catacomb Masters on ebay... 6 Years ago  
Agreed 100%. I used a LOT of DF, but would fill it with other company's 'dungeon dressing' for example. Ainsty, for example, has GREAT range, but it's completely different sizes and hard to 'match', so I stay away from many of their items.

As for DF not offering a catacombs set - there are dozens of different sets that Stefan COULD be making, and many people would buy 'em. I for one would love to see a specific set made - A root system dungeon, with tendrils, roots and vines. It'd be great for use with standard walls and caverns - Really 'earthy' - but it would probably be a minority requirement.

AS you can see in the forum, there have been a number of pieces that never went into production (shame), so - yes - other's making 'compatible pieces would be a good thing. But it's all in HOW you promote it. By dissing DF (even accidentally), as we've seen, you can upset a bunch of die-hard D-Effers who have invested a LOT of money in their prized pieces (me included).
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#31542
*lol* Dwarven Forge Style Catacomb Masters on ebay... 6 Years ago  
I don't mind him using the DF name and such...it's the manner and tone of the post that offends me...something about we had nothing forthcoming and get in on "the action" just struck me as rather sleazy...

after some thought, I decided not to bother with it all...however, the only thing that saddens me is that he seems to be urging on others to start making knock offs or "fillers" of styles we have not gotten to YET...we want to do these things but obviously cannot do them all at once...therefore if someone else or many others decide to do other projects that "fill in the gaps" and they sell reasonably well, lets say several hundred, it might be enough to make us decide not to make that particular style/set even when we believe that we could do it much better...and so, if this becomes a trend, and 5-6 "hobbyists" decide to spend several thousand dollars and each makes a special set that they then sell out of their basement and perhaps even hire some help, and sell several hundred to our most loyal customers where would it leave DF? Our sales would shrink just enough to make it impossible to continue. These hobbyists would probably not make any more styles having seen how much work it is and how little profit is involved, but they will have succeeded in knocking out the main player who has the resources to consistently create top quality pieces because hey are able to sell enough in quantity of each specific "style"

So my angst, is that while I am all for fellow creative gamers making their own customizations and even perhaps selling a few here and there, when they decide to go full blown into "production" and "competiton" with us, it becomes a problem for gamers, and not just Dwarven Forge. This fellow seems not to care one bit, and is encouraging others to "get in on the action" much in the same way that internet guys used to buy our stuff discounted from distributors and then sell them out of some warehouse at 20% discount, thus undercutting both DF and the mom and pop stores who we used to support and supply...this almost put us under until we went to direct sales only, something I wish I didn't have to do, but had no choice, at that point...

There are several sets that I REALLY want to do, they have mostly been sets that have been called for by many on this site, and really hope that nobody else does before we get to them...so I am holding my breath right now and hoping that someone doesn't destroy us all before these sets come to fruition...
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