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Oovee will not accept mods/code etc ripped from other games or made from models with illegal/unsuitable copyright or not in accordance with licenses and/or forum rules. Any Mods will be removed and the user may be banned.
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tweaking others mods


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#1 dodgelover10386

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Posted 02 December 2014 - 01:36 AM

So I have been getting mixed answers on this subject but is it ok or not ok to tweak another persons mod they uploaded? Im not saying that I will upload my tweaked version because I know that is a big NO NO. I'm just asking if its ok to do this for personal preference? And is it ok to share pictures of these tweaks with others on here? If not I will no longer tweak trucks on this game. I don't want to anger or disrespect anyone on this forum in any way, everyone on here has been a big help and nice about everything and would just like to do the same. So with that being said if I do something you don't like let me know so it doesn't continue and I apologize if I have already done anything to make you unhappy with something I have done. And when is mod support gonna be out?? Im seeing all these mods people are making and they look so cool and I wanna use them in the game!! Hopefully the guys and gals at oovee are getting close, I know its probably difficult to make everyone happy on here lol 



#2 PressureLine

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Posted 02 December 2014 - 05:03 AM

Installing mods for a 'normal' person is quite hard (I am getting the giggles imagining my wife trying to do it) and imo until installing tweaks is as simple as selecting "BT's F350" then "dodgelover's F350 tweaks" people need to loosen up. Obviously if you are capable of making a full mod, or even doing a tweak you are capable of downloading a mod, then applying a tweaked truck.xml to make the desired changes, again, for most people this is about 3 steps too many and the response is "Screw this, I'll play with something else."

 

As long as proper credit is given (you make it crystal clear who the original author was, and the scope of your changes) it's time for modders to unbunch their panties and accept the current situation. (note that this does not cover deliberate attempts to claim credit for another's work)

 

If/when it becomes easy for an average user (good luck finding one, most are dumber than bricks) to install and select a limited set of active mods I would consider it bad form (and unnecessary from a bandwidth POV) to re-upload the entire mod to share your tweaks, simply uploading the XML and specifiying that it has to be set to override 'truck xyz mod' should suffice. You could do it now, but there will be some (many :() users who will experience major difficulties installing it, and thus I feel it is acceptable to upload a tweaked mod provided you are making it absolutely clear where the original mod came from (and yet, some people will still credit you, and not the original author, because internets)


Edited by PressureLine, 02 December 2014 - 05:04 AM.

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#3 PressureLine

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Posted 02 December 2014 - 05:06 AM

As for tweaking for yourself, go for it! If people start whining about you posting screens, report them for harassment, or just ignore them.


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#4 SPUN

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Posted 02 December 2014 - 06:00 AM

You can do whatever you want to a mod for your personal use and even post pics if you want. But if you are going to upload a tweak to the forums for download then you must get permission from the original author first.


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#5 PressureLine

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Posted 02 December 2014 - 06:03 AM

Would you object to uploading a modified xml ONLY, with directions to download the original mod from wherever it is hosted?


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#6 Guest_freeman_*

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Posted 02 December 2014 - 06:18 AM

Yeah, I'm curious about this too. I've also noticed at the top of the forum it says this: "Oovee will not accept mods/code etc ripped from other games or made from models with suitable copyright or not in accordance with licenses and/or forum rules. And Mods will be removed and the user may be banned." Yet, where exactly are all these rules and licenses stated? Does anybody know? I've PM'd a moderator about this and still haven't received an answer. I would love to bring some trucks from ST13 into the full game but if I can't get a-hold of the original author for permission to update their work, then suddenly I can't share, even if I give proper credit to the original author? That just saddens me. 

 

EDIT: So I finally found the forum rules. It's posted under the "tech demo" section under "general discussion" and I've just noticed there is a little tiny link at the bottom right of the page. Didn't notice them before. They are here. Only rule I see that really pertains to this topic is number five which states: "#R005 - Members are asked to respect the copyright of other users, sites, media, etc. Users linking to or asking for information on warez, crackz, etc. or re-printing material without permission will receive a warning and their post will be removed."


Edited by freeman, 02 December 2014 - 10:48 AM.


#7 Hein

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Posted 02 December 2014 - 07:36 PM

Would you object to uploading a modified xml ONLY, with directions to download the original mod from wherever it is hosted?

Imho that would be fair. It gives credit to the author of the original mod and makes the original mod a necessary download.

My personal opinion as a user, who can't make a mod not even at gunpoint ;)

And yes we need to add a rule or 2 on tweaking etc

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#8 dodgelover10386

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Posted 03 December 2014 - 03:35 AM

I get the just changing the xml name and uploading it for download as long as its in original state and credit is given to original author. So we can tweak it and upload it for download as long as the author gives permission?



#9 PressureLine

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Posted 03 December 2014 - 05:08 AM

Imho that would be fair. It gives credit to the author of the original mod and makes the original mod a necessary download.

My personal opinion as a user, who can't make a mod not even at gunpoint ;)

And yes we need to add a rule or 2 on tweaking etc

 

The issue with that is that it makes it 'hard' for an average user to do. So many people cannot get it right without very detailed instructions making it more difficult is not necessarily the answer.

 

IMO the xml files are simply data, they contain no 'expression' and are simply a collection of the various datapoints that the engine needs to work. As they contain no real 'original work' they are not protected by copyright.
 

It's important to remember that copyright protects expression, not ideas or data. Config files are generally not expressive enough to be protected by copyright. Moreover, if there is only one way to express an idea, copyright protection generally will not apply.

 

If uploading an xml file with changed values and directions to download and install the original mod then overwrite with the changed file(s) is acceptable, for the sake of end-user convenience (only until such time as proper mod support is in) it should also be acceptable to upload the original mod verbatim with the changed xml files included, provided that proper attribution/credit is given (a guide on how to attribute/credit properly should also be provided).

Obviously if you are changing meshes and/or textures (not including the use of provided skin templates*) you should seek permission, or otherwise comply with the license of the work you are changing.

*Just be aware that under some (otoh GPL for one) licenses texture templates generated from the 3d model (and textures made from the templates) may need to be under the same license as the model itself. Be sure to read the T's and C's.


Edited by PressureLine, 03 December 2014 - 05:08 AM.

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#10 Sandmansa

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Posted 03 December 2014 - 07:10 AM

This has been something I have been wondering myself. Grant it, the mods posted on several sites (including this one) did not show any form of copyright protection protocol's regarding modifications. So I have been under the assumption that users were free to download and tweek to there hearts content. But being with all fairness, respect should be given to those who made any models made for this game, if you intend to share it.

Now I feel that if you physically alter models made by someone else, that you should (out of proper respect) try to get permission from the original 3rd party author to publicize that change. Otherwise, if no physical changes were made, it should be enough to make it clear that you were not the person who made the models in question and if possible, post a link to where you got them. Altering or tweeking the original config files on the other hand, is something else entirely. In this case, Oovee created them and your making changes to them to suit your tastes. And from what I can tell, Oovee supports this, as long as their work stays with their product.

I agree with you Hein. There should be a set of rules made very clearly to those intending to upload a mod here. Especially with the announcement of full mod support coming in the near future, there really should be some defined guidelines on this matter.

#11 PressureLine

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Posted 03 December 2014 - 07:33 AM

I have a BIG post written out on the subject, I can put it here or just PM it to you Hein? But the short version of it, somewhat adapted from the Creative Commons guide to attribution:

 

The attribution must be given to "the best of your ability using the information available". Generally this implies the following:

    *Include any copyright notices (if applicable)
    *Cite the author's name, screen name, or user ID
    *Cite the work's title or name (if applicable)
    *Cite the specific license the work is under
    *Mention if the work is a derivative work or adaptation
        
    As a bare minimum for uploading to the Oovee download manager:

    Download title: "[modder]'s [original] - Modified/Tweaked/whatever by [uploader]"
    First line of the description "This is a modification of [original] by [modder]."

    With the original [modder] name being a link to their forum profile and the [original] title being a link to the download page of the mod. If the original work is under a CC license, that should also be noted in the first line of the description (as per the terms of the CC 4.0 license family).

 

So to make an example of you Sandmansa :D If i was tweaking your Swamp Monsters mod I would do:

 

Sandmansa's Swamp Monsters - PressureLine's Edit

 

This is a modification of the Swamp Monsters v5.6 mod by Sandmansa.

 

For a full list of changes see the original download page.

 

Changed in this version:

  • I really
  • can't be
  • bothered
  • making
  • something
  • believable up

Put install Instructions here.

 

Have a nice day! :lol:

 

That should satisfy all but the most precious modder.


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#12 Hein

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Posted 03 December 2014 - 07:39 AM

Thanks gentlemen for your input. It is appreciated. I will do my best to incorporate this into the forum rules&guidelines. Or rather instruct an admin to do so ;)

Do NOT pm me for support. Use the forum to post your questions etc..

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#13 PressureLine

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Posted 03 December 2014 - 07:54 AM

Ok, copy-pasta SPAM TIEM!

 

I suggest adding a mandatory drop-down list with various licensing options to the upload page. Attempting to leave the field as 'Choose a license' should bounce the uploader back with an instruction to *actually* choose a license.

xml configuration files should not included under the licensing, as they either belong to Oovee, or no-one (depending on how you look at it) because they contain very little (if any) original creative work. Lua scripts are trickier, but my gut feeling on them is that they belong to Oovee, who are allowing modification and distribution of modified files without giving up their copyright or transferring any copyright rights to the modder (clarification from Oovee required).

"Ask me for permission": I will be straight up, I do not like this as an option. It is impractical, and difficult to police (no one has heard from modderX for months, did modderZ really get permission? Or is this going to cause a huge fuss in 6 months time?). Better to either allow (with attribution, ie: CC-BY-SA etc) or disallow the distribution of derivatives (CC-BY-ND etc).

Other/Custom: I am a bit  :wacko: about this, while it is important to give modders the freedom of choice with respect to licensing their own work, it is also important to note that the upload moderators aren't lawyers, and likely have no real basis for deciding whether a custom license is appropriate, fair or legal. Since said moderators are essentially acting on behalf of Oovee (even if in a volunteer capacity) it could cause issues for Oovee if something that shouldn't get approved gets approved and someone raises a stink about it. In saying that, if the license of a ported model is indeterminate, or otherwise cannot be put under one of the 'existing' license options I suppose it could be a good idea to have it.

Uploaders should however feel free to submit a proposal to add a specific license to the official list but imo the Creative Commons options should provide enough options to keep everyone happy:

Creative Commons: A license with various options regarding the distribution and modification of works and their derivatives.

  • CC0 - A way to release material into the public domain, a legal tool for waiving as many rights as legally possible, worldwide. In laymans terms "You may use/distribute/modify this work in any way without restrictions." Not all countries/jurisdictions allow the waiving of all rights however (EU amongst other places)
  • BY - Attribution - You may copy, distribute, display and perform the work and make derivative works based on it only if you give the author/licensor the credits in the manner specified [by the author/licensor].
  • SA - Share-Alike - You may distribute derivative works only under a license identical to the license that governs the original work.
  • NC - Non-Commercial - You may copy, distribute, display, and perform the work and make derivative works based on it only for non-commercial* purposes.
  • ND - No Derivatives - You may copy, distribute, display and perform only verbatim [exact copies] copies of the work, not derivative works based on it.

The 6 'official' CC licence combinations are thus: CC-BY, CC-BY, CC-BY-SA, CC-BY-SA-NC, CC-BY-ND and CC-BY-ND-NC. CC0 is a special case and apart from the fact that the Creative Commons foundation supplies a tool to generate the legalese for it, CC0 has no connection to the other CC licenses.

All official CC 4.0 licences, apart from CC0, have the 'BY' clause. Note that SA and ND are mutually exclusive and thus cannot be used in combination with each other, CC0 cannot be used in conjunction with any of the other clauses.

Another option (for Oovee) would be to go down the same route that Bohmia Interactive did with the APL/APL-SA, which has an additional caveat that the content only be used for ARMA games and has the Non-Commercial clause a default (and unremovable) part of the licence.

 

 

ARMA PUBLIC LICENSE (APL)

With this license you are free to adapt (i.e. modify, rework or update) and share (i.e. copy, distribute or transmit) the material under the following conditions:

Attribution - You must attribute the material in the manner specified by the author or licensor (but not in any way that suggests that they endorse you or your use of the material).
Non-commercial - You may not use this material for any commercial purposes.
Arma Only - You may not convert or adapt this material to be used in other games than Arma.

 

The APL-SA has a Share-Alike clause identical to that of the Creative Commons SA clause.

More options:

Some other licenses that could be considered.

Free Art License 1.3

GPL v3: Originally written for computer code, the GPL license is not really intended for works of 'art'. The GPL has some (to me) strange clauses, I would advise caution and making sure you have a very clear understanding of what GPL/LGPL entails and what it requires of you before choosing to apply it to your work.

Artistic License 2.0: Technically written for Perl progams, this is still a decent choice. Broadly similar to CC-BY-SA, be sure to fully understand the terms and requirements of using this license.

Afaik neither the GPLV3 or AL2.0 *require* attribution (afaik), but both *do* require that you provide a link of some sort to the original work.

*Just a note that afaik 'Non-Commercial' does not preclude having ads on the download page/site, it generally only disallows requiring a fee be paid to download, although charging a 'storage retrieval fee' to recoup the costs of hosting/file storage is allowed.

**Special note for existing mods in the 'download manager'. I really don't know what to do with these, possibly best to provisionally assign them CC-BY-NC-ND pending review by the uploader.


Edited by PressureLine, 03 December 2014 - 07:55 AM.

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#14 Hein

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Posted 03 December 2014 - 09:57 AM

Thanks PressureLine, i prefer things to be out in the open so posting whatever you want to contribute here is just fine. I have send word to Oovee to come and take a look at this thread. I also pinned it as i find it is important for all that we get this "problem" dealt with correctly.

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#15 PressureLine

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Posted 03 December 2014 - 10:37 AM

Okay :)

 

If you aren't doing this already: Approval should only be given for uploads which meet the minimum attribution standards (which should be clear and easy to find) with encouragement to comply being the first recourse, and penalties could applied for serial 'offenders' (disallow uploading for a limited period of time if attribution standards are repeatedly not being applied, followed by upload bans for continuing. Some people will not learn otherwise, and just submit items that cannot be approved) to stop them from wasting your time.

 

As for licensing, I think people would feel a lot better (I suppose I would, but then for my own works I don't really care) if a Spintires specific version of the CC licenses were written, with a permanent "Spintires only" clause attached, with the NC/SA and ND clauses optional.

 

I just really don't want ST modding to turn into this:

 

[SimCity4 modding] So for the circa 50 packs you are installing, there are minimum 5 dependencies EACH. To make things better, a lot of the dependency links are outdated because ---- you. And the reason for all this? The reason why no one makes a one file install? IP rights and licensing. You cannot pack the models in with the lots, because the modelers apparently don't give anyone permission to pack their models into releases.

 

or this:

 

In RoR [Rigs of Rods] there is a large amount of hostility around the concept of "skinning" - which is essentially the idea of using the vehicle physics files from another users vehicle mod to make your own vehicle. I find this rather odd since the config variables are so arcane that the probability of a noob being able to build a vehicle skeleton from scratch is close to zero!

There are even a large number of finished vehicles that are unreleased or available only by befriending the author and the justification is the fear that their vehicle will be skinned. It seems to be a case of "I spent a year on my car but he did his in a month by copying me! - he's stealing my thunder!"

I'm glad this isn't going on in this community. It's a rather poisonous environment to work in and ultimately hurts [mod] developers and end-users.

 

Both are utterly ridiculous situations, especially so in the first case. Where the end user had to hunt all over the internet for over 500 separate files because the people who make the models won't let the people who make the installers put the models in the installers, and only make them available as a single building download. I can someowhat see the point in the RoR case, but even so not releasing things because "someone might use my config to get their mod finished faster or better than they could do it themselves" is, frankly, stupid.

 

TBH the same applies for the people here saying "I would release my ST mod, but people will 'steal' the model, do nefarious things to it and upload it as their own work." Guess what, it's the internet, the internet is full of a-holes. Anything short of full 256bit private key encryption scheme is going to fall short. If Oovee releases a .sts (or whatever) proprietary 3d model format, there is going to have to be a way to convert into that format, and with computer code, if there is a way in, there's a way out... it's just a matter of time.

 

Thinking about it, an 'easy' interim solution could be to have the game generate a separate 'meshcache.mhc' for each mod model separately, and allow reading from them instead of the .x files?


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#16 mendel

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Posted 03 December 2014 - 10:53 AM

"Ask me for permission" is the default, i.e. that's what should be applied to all of the uploads we have now. It should grant ooVee the right to redistribute the files unchanged via their website or any game service they might set up, at no charge to anyone who owns the game.

The forum system allows for easy administration of tweaking/re-modding rights: you ask for permission in a PM; if you get permission, you add the "file moderator" to the conversation, and they can see that it has been given, and by whom.

 

For the open content licenses, I would choose one or at most two, because most forum users aren't lawyers either, and it becomes a nuisance to support if you have a lo of variation. If it is decided to make it possible to attach open content licenses via the upload system (any author can always include one), we should have a thread on the mod forum discussing preferences. I would suggest a nonrestrictive license like CC BY-NC-SA, which allows changing the mods noncommercially as long as the original author is given credit and the same right is granted for the changed mod (seems only fair); and then there'd be CC BY-ND, which allows sharing in any way as long as the files are kept unchanged (and properly attributed!), but forbids tweaks and re-mods except for private purposes (which means you may not upload your changes anywhere).  

If you don't want to share, there's "ask me for permission".


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#17 PressureLine

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Posted 03 December 2014 - 11:13 AM

All of this is academic anyway, has anyone actually tried to release a modified model/texture/sound? If the xml files are subject to copyright, they belong to Oovee*, no matter how many variables you change, if they aren't subject to copyright (being merely configuration data) they don't belong to anyone.

 

Only uploading any changed xml files and not re-upping an entire mod is a courtesy, nothing more, unless you are going with the strict interpretation that the models/textures/sounds should ONLY be available from exactly** where the author chose to upload them.

 

* From the Oovee legal page:

 

SPINTIRES™
 

Game engine code © 2014 Pavel Zagrebelnyy. SPINTIRES code and all other materials © 2014 Oovee® Ltd. Oovee, the Oovee logo, SPINTIRES and the SPINTIRES logo are trademarks of Oovee Ltd. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

 

**'exactly' in this case meaning 'the original generated download page' and not the oovee.co.uk site as a whole.


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#18 mendel

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Posted 03 December 2014 - 11:15 AM

TBH the same applies for the people here saying "I would release my ST mod, but people will 'steal' the model, do nefarious things to it and upload it as their own work." Guess what, it's the internet, the internet is full of a-holes. Anything short of full 256bit private key encryption scheme is going to fall short.

 

Any encryption scheme is falling short, because encryption only works if you can keep the keys and the encypted data secret, which is diametrically opposite to the idea of publishing the data. If you have any game mechanism designed to "protect" content that you are publishing, it's going to be broken if someone wants to, and at that point your investment in that protection scheme is down the drain. We know that huge companies and consortiums fail to provide this protection, and that the offshot is that all it does is hurt the legitimate users (Hate how Spintires kills your multiplayer games whenever Steam has a hiccup? That's what I'm talking about.) Examples: any big videogame publisher (nobody rips off EA or Codemasters games because their copy protection is so rad, right?) and the big content consortiums (DVD, Blueray etc.). There's rippers out there that can rip any mesh out of the running game, no matter how well you protected your file, because you can't protect your truck in the game. (Well, I guess you could, but then all protected trucks would look like the black ghosts in beta_next look now).

 

Image of safely protected truck being delivered to ooVee. (Apologies to h1p2c3).

Attached File  protected Truck.jpg   74.35KB   3 downloads

 

I have written countless pages of text for a big gaming wiki under an open content license. As wikipedia demonstrates, open content licenses such as CC BY-NC-SA encourage people to learn from each other, improve each other's work, and publish lots of awesome stuff. The idea is, I am profiting from this, so I should contribute something back. It hopefulyl means that there'll be more people willing and able to learn modding, and we#d all profit from our modding scene growing.

 

On the other hand, releasing content restrictively makes people who want to "tweak" it feel they're doing something forbidden and that they have to try and not get caught. For this reason, if these works are being redistributed and/or tweaked (and they will be if they're any good), it's very unlikely that they'll be properly attributed, because it means they'd be "caught" more easily.


Edited by mendel, 03 December 2014 - 11:52 AM.

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#19 mendel

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Posted 03 December 2014 - 11:27 AM

All of this is academic anyway, has anyone actually tried to release a modified model/texture/sound? If the xml files are subject to copyright, they belong to Oovee*, no matter how many variables you change, if they aren't subject to copyright (being merely configuration data) they don't belong to anyone.

 

Only uploading any changed xml files and not re-upping an entire mod is a courtesy, nothing more, unless you are going with the strict interpretation that the models/textures/sounds should ONLY be available from exactly** where the author chose to upload them.

 

* From the Oovee legal page:

 

**'exactly' in this case meaning 'the original generated download page' and not the oovee.co.uk site as a whole.

It is my opinion that the xml files are subject to copyright (they are an expression of an idea); that creative changes (mods) in those files can constitute a derivative work; that copyright in this work rests jointly with both ooVee and the modder; and that means only ooVee and that modder can together decide to publish that file. When a modder uploads it here, then ooVee publishes it (they could just delete it from this server or decide not to allow publication, since all uploads are moderated anyway), so the requirement of joint publication is satisfied.

 

Republication on other sites would require premission from both ooVee and the modder, unless ooVee generally released some of their files.

 

However, I am not a lawyer, and this is not legal advice.  ^_^


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#20 PressureLine

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Posted 03 December 2014 - 11:38 AM

I agree that trying to DRM mod content is pointless, it is far too easy to crack open if someone wants to 'steal' the model/texture/sound.

 

Nobody rips off EA because their games are often mediocre at best ;)

 

Re-uploading the art content of a mod with changed xml files does not violate the copyright of the model/texture/sound artist unless at the time of first upload it is clearly stated that the files are to be available from that specific location only. Only uploading the changed xml files, directing the end user to the original mod, having them install the mod and then install the changed xml files gives you exactly the same end result, the only difference is who is doing the combining of the two. In neither case is anyone's copyright violated.

 

 

 

It is my opinion that the xml files are subject to copyright (they are an expression of an idea); that creative changes (mods) in those files can constitute a derivative work; that copyright in this work rests jointly with both ooVee and the modder; and that means only ooVee and that modder can together decide to publish that file. When a modder uploads it here, then ooVee publishes it (they could just delete it from this server or decide not to allow publication, since all uploads are moderated anyway), so the requirement of joint publication is satisfied.

 

Republication on other sites would require premission from both ooVee and the modder, unless ooVee generally released some of their files.

 

However, I am not a lawyer, and this is not legal advice.  ^_^

 

I don't think that changing a few values and mesh references in a text file can actually be considered a creative work.
 

It's important to remember that copyright protects expression, not ideas or data. Config files are generally not expressive enough to be protected by copyright. Moreover, if there is only one way to express an idea, copyright protection generally will not apply.

 

The last sentance also applies to the xml files. The game requires that an object have certain values and attributes assigned to it, the way these values are read is fixed by the API. To put an addon on your vehicle you must have an entry in the <AddonSockets> section which must be in the <GameData> section which must in turn be in the <Truck> section, there is pretty much only one way to do it.

 

Furthermore, lists of 'factual' data (even though in this case the data is defining reality, not reflecting it) don't fall under copyright either, even if the method of storing and retrieving said data is.


Edited by PressureLine, 03 December 2014 - 11:49 AM.

"Air fresheners do not replace good hygiene practices."




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