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Lobby 2. Welcome Main Community Discussion Board topic #90739
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Subject: "What Is Allowed - & What Is Fair?" Previous topic | Next topic
Mesg #90739 "What Is Allowed - & What Is Fair?"
Author Wandering Author     Click to send email to this author Click to send private message to this author Click to view this author's profile Click to add this author to your buddy list
Author Info Member since Jun 01st 2007
1569 posts
Date Sat Apr-21-12 11:30 AM
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My question revolves around Lorandia, the shared world project that never entirely got off the ground. I came up with most of the background on one country, and a few other details, and I set one partially finished story in that world. By agreement, the copyright to Lorandia was held by Forward Motion, and use of that world would require permission.

Now, I'm trying to clean up my notes, expand on those that need it, etc. as well as finish the various stories I've started, so I have to figure out what to do about the story set in Lorandia. And there are problems with Lorandia; not all of the worldbuilding was as careful as it could have been. (I'm not naming names, in fact I don't remember them, but I do remember running into some logical flaws here and there.)

Zette obviously has the final say on what I can and cannot do. Whatever limits she sets, I won't cross. But assuming she allows me to do anything with the notes for Typhre and some of the features around it, and the story, there is still the question of what copyright law allows and what is fair.

My thoughts, which follow, are just that. I'm thinking out loud. I'm not saying I'm right, I'm just trying to get a sense for what the rest of you - and especially those who had any part in shaping Lorandia - think. I'm not inclined to do anything the rest of you feel would be unfair - especially those who took part.

Since ideas are not copyrightable, I would suspect I'd have the legal, and possibly the moral, right to rework the parts I contributed and fit them into the framework of another world I create. Given some of the logical flaws, I'd need to do something similar in any case, or at least "renovate" the existing material. But how far do I need to go? Or should I just abandon the whole thing? There are details in the story that I'm pretty sure spring from other contributions to that world, and sorting out what is what and eliminating every detail and similarity to others' contributions is going to be tricky. The story is set in the part of the world I (mostly) created, which makes it far easier than it would otherwise be, but I am not always certain which details that aren't in my own contributions to Lorandia were just things that sprang up in the story, and which came from others' ideas. And the notes I have for the story similarly contain material I can only be so sure of. Obviously, names and the most specific details that I'm not sure of need to be cut out or changed, but how far do I need to go? Trying to avoid a world that's too similar to Lorandia, without gutting the story so badly it won't survive, is going to be a tricky walk no matter what. But where is that line? What types of information are general enough that it doesn't matter?

I'd add a footnote to this question. While Lorandia was a great idea and a fun one in many ways, I've gained one bit of valuable experience. Never invest too much energy, effort, or time into a project that involves a shared world unless you first have all the specifics worked out, agreed to, and pinned down, so you don't need to worry about them after the fact. (That includes what to do if others' contributions contain logical flaws or contradictions that require resolution, since that is a specific issue of its own.)

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What Is Allowed - & What Is Fair? [View all] , Wandering Author, Sat Apr-21-12 11:30 AM
  RE: What Is Allowed - & What Is Fair?, jameskearl, Apr 22nd 2012, #1
RE: What Is Allowed - & What Is Fair?, l_clausewitz, Apr 25th 2012, #2
RE: What Is Allowed - & What Is Fair?, Wandering Author, Apr 25th 2012, #3
RE: What Is Allowed - & What Is Fair?, Wandering Author, Apr 25th 2012, #4
RE: What Is Allowed - & What Is Fair?, astropolis, Apr 29th 2012, #5
RE: What Is Allowed - & What Is Fair?, l_clausewitz, Sep 18th 2012, #6

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