OTW Fannews: Claiming ownership

  • Gamespot reported that “Nintendo is now claiming advertising revenue from user-created YouTube videos that feature the company’s games”, something that some fans claim make little sense given the nature of game play. “‘Video games aren’t like movies or TV. Each play-through is a unique audiovisual experience,’ Scott said. ‘When I see a film that someone else is also watching, I don’t need to see it again. When I see a game that someone else is playing, I want to play that game for myself! Sure, there may be some people who watch games rather than play them, but are those people even gamers?'”
  • Discussing a case in the Federal Court of Australia, DC Comics v Cheqout Pty Ltd., an article in The Conversation said “Intellectual property and superheroes is complicated. Superman has spawned a host of imitations and emulations in comic books, graphic novels, and films – everything from Dr Manhattan in The Watchmen to Mr Incredible in Pixar’s The Incredibles. Over-protection of Superman under intellectual property could repress and suppress such creativity and innovation.” Noting that the OTW was formed to combat intellectual property claims against fanworks, Professor Matthew Rimmer stated “There has been a concern that the excessive protection of intellectual property rights of superheroes could have an adverse impact upon creativity, remix culture, and fan fiction.”
  • Less common is discussion of merchandisers exploiting fans. A particularly egregious case involved cosplayers having their photos used on body pillows being sold at cons. After outraged fans complained to the merchandiser and con organizers, their sale was halted. “It’s difficult to see how screening a cosplayer onto a $12 pillow could inspire anyone, or why models who went uncompensated for their work would be “flattered” to be exploited to turn a quick buck for the photographer. But while condemnation continued to be swift, several people did thank Pearce for his relatively quick action in removing the pillows.”

What legal actions have caught your attention? Write about them in Fanlore! Contributions are welcome from all fans.

We want your suggestions! If you know of an essay, video, article, podcast, or link you think we should know about, comment on the most recent OTW Fannews post. Links are welcome in all languages! Submitting a link doesn’t guarantee that it will be included in a roundup post, and inclusion of a link doesn’t mean that it is endorsed by the OTW.