PDA

View Full Version : GW will probably sue again!



Darkseer
17-12-2005, 13:53
http://www.olleysarmies.co.uk/scrunts.html

Check out these beauties. :D

Man, it makes me wish that I'd trained to be a lawyer

Luke
17-12-2005, 13:55
somehow i dont think GW will be shaking in their boots :D

Dakkagor
17-12-2005, 13:57
probably not. If Gw does sue and the site disappears, they'll never be rid of squat fanboys saying its a big conspiracy and their going to bring back squats!

If I where GW, I'd let em be.

t-tauri
17-12-2005, 13:58
They've been out for ages, they're sculpted by the guy who originally did nmany Squats and GW can't sue over them because they don't infringe GW IP.

Short denizens of high gravity worlds are an SF staple and these use no GW icons, uniform styles or weapons. They can no more sue Bob Olley over Scrunts than they can sue Mongoose over Starship Troopers ripping off Tyranids and IG. (or should that be the other way round?)

Darkseer
17-12-2005, 13:58
Demiurg are the new squats and they will no doubt make an appearance at some point.

Dakkagor
17-12-2005, 14:10
Maybe, maybe not. I'm not holding my breath. If I want to beat in short bearded gits, I'll play my housemate with dwarves

Da Reddaneks
17-12-2005, 14:20
Well, GW may well sue despite the validity of any claim. its a business tactic used to not only vigorously protect intellectual property rights but it also forces small start up companies out of business due to the cost of litigation. GW is only here to produce a great product as a secondary function. Their first priority is to make money now and in the future. Frankly, the same priorities I have.

However, the concept of Dwarfs in outer space would far more likely than not be a concept that is in the public domain. Scrunties in and of themselves are probably fine. Its really more of an issue of how the items will be marketed and if they are intended to “cut into the action”, to use the vernacular, of GW products. If they did their action certaintly passes the "straight face test."

On a note purely from the left brain, go Scrunties! I miss seeing Space-dwarfs and look forward to the return of the Demurig (sp?).

TheOneWithNoName
17-12-2005, 14:20
Scrunts? Someone should be sued for that ridiculous name.

Griefbringer
17-12-2005, 14:27
There are few things that GW wouldn't be willing to sue over, at least if one is to believe Bubble Ghost's GW-o-predictor:

http://www.warseer.com/forums/showthread.php?t=7125

sigur
17-12-2005, 14:49
Ah, nice looking miniatures....they might find a way into my Squat force. Weapons converting won't be too easy but there is no big need for that.

And I don't think that GW will do much about this site. 92% of GW customers don't buy space dwarfs anyway and the rest just gets them off ebay which GW also doesn't control so there's no loss for the company.

Jo Bennett
17-12-2005, 15:15
There are few things that GW wouldn't be willing to sue over, at least if one is to believe Bubble Ghost's GW-o-predictor:

http://www.warseer.com/forums/showthread.php?t=7125

The only thing that puzzles me about that thread is how anyone managed to get the Church of England to agree on the existence of hell, let alone that it had frozen over... :s

Griefbringer
17-12-2005, 15:42
Well, partial GW take-over might have influenced issues:



September 2014: UK supreme court judges that Bible infringes GW IP, and as a compensation Church of England has to hand over all the rights to Bible to GW.

October 2015: having made good of the rights obtained, GW publishes new and heavily improved Bible 2nd Edition. It has been abridged to 196 pages to make it easier to read for the target audience, and various favourite characters (like David) have been made into Space Marines.

November 2015: GW releases a boxed set for the Bible 2nd edition, featuring plastic models for the twelve apostles.

January 2016: GW releases an errata (42 pages) and official FAQ (63 pages) to the Bible 2nd Edition.

Adept
17-12-2005, 15:49
Scrunts? Someone should be sued for that ridiculous name.

Yeah, Squats is a much better name.

:rolleyes:

Eduard
17-12-2005, 16:55
Scrunts? Someone should be sued for that ridiculous name.

Only Sued?? I'd say shoot the idiot! It's the only way to be sure it doesn't happen again.

Crazy Harborc
17-12-2005, 19:01
Since GW officials have repeatedly stated that there will be no more Stunties, Space Dwarves, etc, etc, it'll be reeaalll hard to "win" a lawsuit against some other minies maker not copying GW's work or rules.

Agamemnon2
17-12-2005, 19:06
The only thing that puzzles me about that thread is how anyone managed to get the Church of England to agree on the existence of hell, let alone that it had frozen over... :s

The only thing that puzzles me is that people with as low standards for humor as the original posters of that timeline are allowed to mingle with the general population.

Griefbringer
17-12-2005, 19:13
Since GW officials have repeatedly stated that there will be no more Stunties, Space Dwarves, etc, etc, it'll be reeaalll hard to "win" a lawsuit against some other minies maker not copying GW's work or rules.

Just because they said they are not making them any more does not mean that they do not own the copyright for the models they have released (with the copyright lasting automatically 70+ years).

However, they (nor anyone else) owns a right to the concept of Space Dwarves or something similar, so the works would need to have rather close resemblance to the GW works to qualify.

However, has GW really bothered to do anything with their trademark on squats?

Agamemnon2
17-12-2005, 19:20
Personally, I think a lawsuit unlikely since GW is trying its best to pretend anything before 3E did not exist, including Rogue Trader, Squats, Zoats, Khorne Stormboyz and Gyro-Stabilized Monowheels.

Orbital
17-12-2005, 19:28
As a guy who works in the video game industry, I am reminded of the parallels between this discussion and the ongoing issue of "abandonware". Abandonware is a term used for games which are incredibly old and can't be bought anymore because the publisher has end-of-lifed it and has no plans to create a sequel or otherwise follow-up on it. Certain folks, therefore, believe it's ok to take that software and post it on the internet for free download. I do understand this line of thinking; if you CAN'T give the publisher your money, how else are you supposed to get the game? You would buy it if you could, but that's impossible.

Unfortunately, this thinking is based upon a faulty premise, which is that you have a right to own the game by any means necessary. The truth is that those who own the trademark, brand name, whatever have the right not only to put the game in the hands of customers, but also to keep it out of the hands of customers. The "why" surrounding that choice could be as simple as "we hate our customers", and there's still absolutely no way someone could circumvent their decision. It's that cut and dry. The truth of the matter, however, is usually that the publisher has other things on the docket, but may decide later to revisit the properly... even if it's only to license the title for a "1000 Games" CD that's sold in a bargain bin at Wal Mart. Of course, we sometimes see awesome franchises come back to life in new titles (Doom 3, for instance), so ya just don't know.

Sometimes these sorts of trademark ownership laws work in our favor, too: Ted Nugent bought Muzak, inc. so that he could make sure their piped-in elevator/grocery store music was never, ever heard by a living soul again for the rest of time.

Griefbringer
17-12-2005, 19:41
Orbital: looks like you are mixing up copyright and trademark. I will try to give a brief summary of each:

* Copyright: right to make copies (digital or analog) of a product. Is automatic, and automatically lasts for 70+ years.

* Trademark: right to use a certain term, logo or other identifier in commercial activity. Is not automatic, and prone to be lost if not taken care of.

Orbital
17-12-2005, 20:17
You're correct, Grifbringer. What I should have probably have been using is "Intellectual Property".

Karhedron
17-12-2005, 20:28
Simply put, it is very unlikely that GW would even bother trying to sue. Dwarves are a generic part of fantasy and importing them into a Sci-fi setting is hardly a novel idea.

You cannot sue someone because they have come out with a similar product. Otherwise Henry Ford would have sued every company that made a car with 4 wheels. To win a copyright case you have to prove that the company B has taken something that company A created and registered.

GW cannot sue anyone for making dwarves in space. If someone called them Squats then they would be on shaky ground because GW have probably copyrighted Squats in reference to Space Dwarves.

But change the name and remove any GW-specific iconography and there is nothing GW can do. Even if they actually succeeded in suing someone for something like that they know it would open the floodgates for them to be sued in return by everyone they have ripped off over the years from Michael Moorcock to James Cameron.

Griefbringer
18-12-2005, 00:19
If someone called them Squats then they would be on shaky ground because GW have probably copyrighted Squats in reference to Space Dwarves.

It is not usually possible to claim copyright to single word, especially if it is not ones own invention (not to mention that there is no such action as "copyrighting", since a copyright exists automatically regardless of the creators will - however in US an existing copyright can be reinforced by registering it).

What GW has had is a trademark (not necessarily registered one) for Squats, and they are likely to still have it. However, it is not explicitly mentioned among the list of trademarks they have bothered to put on their website http://uk.games-workshop.com/legal/copyrights/1/

Christine
18-12-2005, 13:36
Hmm the last post was certainly an interesting one...

The Ape
18-12-2005, 22:21
For the record, under UK law, whether something attracts copyright or not is determined by the Copyright, Designs & Patents Act. As GW is a UK based company, most of GW's IP will come under UK law.

elphabea
18-12-2005, 22:48
Wow! So thats what happened to Bob Olley. looking at those figs makes it seem like 1988 all over again........

Grimaldus
18-12-2005, 23:16
I recall seeing minis from that style era long ago, when I first started getting interested in the hobby. They look, uh....I guess it's a personal taste thing, mixed in with a bit of nostalgia?
And as for GW being concerned enough about *that* to sue? Well, I'm not sure...maybe they've done so for less in the past, but I wouldn't know as I don't really follow such things that closely, but if so perhaps there's some precedent for thinking that they might.
However, I just can't see why they'd possibly waste their time on such a pointless course of action. If these...*things* were any sort of threat in any possible way to GW, I doubt I'd be paying what I do now for models. When I pay all that money for the models GW currently produces, I lie to myself and say I'm paying for quality, for such amazing little figures, for the artistic talent that went into them. These models don't strike me as being something I'd buy, really at any price. Regardless of the obvious closeness these have to Squats, they have nothing to do with 40k, or GW as a whole, really. I thougt GW washed their hands of the space dwarfs.

I'm no lawyer, though, and I'm also not all that familiar with GW's copyrighting and such...so I could be totally off base. If GW did go after this guy for these, however, I think they'd end up looking pretty foolish.

Griefbringer
19-12-2005, 11:49
As GW is a UK based company, most of GW's IP will come under UK law.

In general any lawsuit for any IP infringement is to be conducted according to the laws of the country where the infringement happened.

So for example if somebody started re-casting GW models in Thailand, GW would need to raise a lawsuit in Thailand and according to the local laws. However, if somebody tried importing those models to UK they could raise a case according to the UK law.