[MUD-Dev] Re: Black Snow Revisited

holding99 at mindspring.com holding99 at mindspring.com
Mon Apr 1 11:17:53 New Zealand Daylight Time 2002

At 08:16 PM 3/31/2002 -0800, Brad McQuaid wrote:

> In fact, I'm pretty sure the only reason you can 'own' that which
> you create with Adobe Photoshop or Microsoft Word is because the
> EULA allows you to.  If that right isn't explicitly granted, you
> don't.  Another analogous example are

Um, no. IANAL, and IANAGD, but the reason you own something you
create with someone else's software is because the thing you're
creating is fairly distinct from the software. I don't NEED
Microsoft Word to write a story; once it's written, others don't
NEED Microsoft Word to read it. I may choose to distribute it in
Word format, but I can easily print it out, and distribute it as
text, or, if necessary, I can pass it on by oral tradition as people
have done for millennia. Microsoft could write into their EULA,
"Anything you create with this piece of software is ours, and we can
do whatever we want with it," and it would not be defendable in
court, basically for the reasons I've stated above.

However, game pieces in online games are intrinsically entangled in
the game, and cannot be separated. My character, and all of his
"stuff", not only doesn't exist outside of the game, but CAN'T exist
outside of the game. Fir this reason, it will be considered part of
the game for legal purposes. Remember, it's not the perceptions of
those who are associated with online games which matter in a court
of law; it's the perception of the judge(s) (and any associated
jury), almost all of whom are not online game designers, and are not
online game players.

Of course, YOMV.

T.H. Cooke

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