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ziggy2000

Space Rocks has apparently been issued a C&D

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This actually scares me for two reasons:

 

#1- Heroes of the Aturi Cluster - It's not a FFG or Disney property, could it be affected by being an infringement?

 

#2- Star Wars Fandom - 90% of what drove star wars for the past 30+ years since the original films was fan content. Is that now in danger?

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They had a website and ebay store where they sold "scenery" for Armada and X-Wing, including 3d asteroids and wreckage models for the Corvette, Transport, Falcon etc. as well as a kick-ass looking Nebulon-B in X-wing scale. It was probably kind of sketchy as far as licensing is concerned, and they received a lot of paid orders that have not been delivered.

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This actually scares me for two reasons:

 

#1- Heroes of the Aturi Cluster - It's not a FFG or Disney property, could it be affected by being an infringement?

 

#2- Star Wars Fandom - 90% of what drove star wars for the past 30+ years since the original films was fan content. Is that now in danger?

 

As long as you're not SELLING fan-made material, Disney and FFG have little to no reason to go after you, and may not have a legal basis to go after you anyway. Space Rocks was selling unlicensed models of ships featured in the movies for real money. Aturi Cluster is 100% freely distributed. That makes a difference.

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This actually scares me for two reasons:

 

#1- Heroes of the Aturi Cluster - It's not a FFG or Disney property, could it be affected by being an infringement?

 

#2- Star Wars Fandom - 90% of what drove star wars for the past 30+ years since the original films was fan content. Is that now in danger?

Not sure, but HotAC is not being sold, so is probably not as likely a target. Space Rocks had hard merchandise that was being sold for profit, so I don't think traditional fan content would be treated the same.

 

I reserve the right to be mistaken, however...

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When did this happen? I looked at ordering some of these yesterday. Don't mess with the mouse, I guess!

It was only today that the website redirected to the C&D order, the ebay store was empty, and Facebook presence has been deleted. I have been trying to contact them for a while and had visited those places on a daily basis. I was alerted to the fact by a post on reddit.

Edited by ziggy2000

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This actually scares me for two reasons:

 

#1- Heroes of the Aturi Cluster - It's not a FFG or Disney property, could it be affected by being an infringement?

 

#2- Star Wars Fandom - 90% of what drove star wars for the past 30+ years since the original films was fan content. Is that now in danger?

On 1, it shouldn't. The content is not being sold. I noticed the .pdf has a disclaimer about FFG. It is possible that AG7 will have to add a Disney disclaimer. The images and their usage will probably fall under fair use, so I wouldn't be too concerned.

 

On 2, you actually probably want Disney to be a little tough on protecting the IP.  Failure to defend one's IP opens up future issues regarding ownership of the IP.  It appears that Disney exercises care and control over the Star Wars license which hopefully keeps a lot of the "junk" both physical and artistic out of the IP.

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It's a shame because they are good products and save you from destroying ships to make your debris, however the sale is what makes it dodgy ground IP wise.

Really nice company though, sad to see this. Message to FFG should be to make a Nebulon ;)

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If these are the peeps that usually have eBay listings for wrecked Corvettes, GR-75's and large ships like the Falcon and Decimator, I don't know as if I have a problem with this. Those wrecks were most likely an FFG model cut up and made wrecked then cast into a mold. Thinking that can't be on the up and up.

Edited by Filter

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If these are the peeps that usually have eBay listings for wrecked Corvettes, GR-75's and large ships like the Falcon and Decimator, I don't know as if I have a problem with this. Those wrecks were most likely an FFG model cut up and made wrecked then cast into a mold. Thinking that can be on the up and up.

That's exactly what these folks were doing, so I guess Didney has a different take on the situation.  They also sold really nice 3d asteroids with acrylic bases, which probably did not violate any licenses, but are a victim of circumstance.

 

There are a few other questions as well, but I'll leave those for later.

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I suggest everyone with outstanding orders with this company immediately file a complaint with whatever mode of payment you used due to them not being able to provide the purchased products.

I know people have been after this company for months over outstanding orders. It is really shady that the dates of that C&D are all that is blacked out as this company was taking orders as if recently, despite having unfulfilled orders. Makes it seem as if they were taking purchases with no intent to fulfill them.

Edited by ScottieATF

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The UK has previously ruled against Games Workshop when they sued after market producers. In that case, because GW wasn't actively selling the pieces being sold by after market dealers, it wasn't infringing on their product. Should be interesting if this goes to court.

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I suggest everyone with outstanding orders with this company immediately file a complaint with whatever mode of payment you used due to them not being able to provide the purchased products.

I know people have been after this company for months over outstanding orders. It is really shady that the dates of that C&D are all that is blacked out as this company was taking orders as if recently, despite having unfulfilled orders. Makes it seem as if they were taking purchases with no intent to fulfill them.

I wondered about the blacked-out dates as well. They issued statements in November that they had moved to the US and were working to catch up the back orders. I speculate that the move across the pond was precipitated by the C&D, since it was issued by the European, Middle East & Africa division of Disney. Perhaps it was an attempt to flee jurisdiction? It may end up being a case of out of the frying pan, into the fire...

 

Your advice to file complaints is probably the way to go.

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This actually scares me for two reasons:

 

#1- Heroes of the Aturi Cluster - It's not a FFG or Disney property, could it be affected by being an infringement?

 

#2- Star Wars Fandom - 90% of what drove star wars for the past 30+ years since the original films was fan content. Is that now in danger?

As far as 2 goes: they were selling Star Wars products for profit without a license. I had a feeling this was coming when I looked to buy the Neb for xwing and didn't see any lisencing jargon. 99% of the fan created stuff is done for fandom' sake and is not being sold, so no worries there. It's really apples and oranges. If I have an idea and go through the process of public ownership someone else should not be able to profit from it without my consent (whatever I believe my consent to be worth). That's all Disney is doing here; saying they have a right to control their intellectual property.

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If these are the peeps that usually have eBay listings for wrecked Corvettes, GR-75's and large ships like the Falcon and Decimator, I don't know as if I have a problem with this. Those wrecks were most likely an FFG model cut up and made wrecked then cast into a mold. Thinking that can be on the up and up.

 

They seem to actually mention these in the C&D. 

 

The UK has previously ruled against Games Workshop when they sued after market producers. In that case, because GW wasn't actively selling the pieces being sold by after market dealers, it wasn't infringing on their product. Should be interesting if this goes to court.

 

One does not challenge the Mouse in terms of intellectual property. 

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The UK has previously ruled against Games Workshop when they sued after market producers. In that case, because GW wasn't actively selling the pieces being sold by after market dealers, it wasn't infringing on their product. Should be interesting if this goes to court.

 

Maybe, perhaps you are interested enough to offer to pay his legal costs? :D

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If these are the peeps that usually have eBay listings for wrecked Corvettes, GR-75's and large ships like the Falcon and Decimator, I don't know as if I have a problem with this. Those wrecks were most likely an FFG model cut up and made wrecked then cast into a mold. Thinking that can be on the up and up.

It doesn't matter if someone purchased the licensed products, cut them up and then created something else. The second you turn around and attempt to sell those items (especially if you are using those names and have recognizable components) you have crossed the line. I'm sure these were nice people with great products but Space Rocks clearly was in the wrong by selling unlicensed products that someone else owns the rights to. It's unfortunate for everyone involved but you cannot blame Disney. If a company fails to enforce their copyrights and what not they risk losing them. Space Rocks took things too far.

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It doesn't matter if someone purchased the licensed products, cut them up and then created something else. The second you turn around and attempt to sell those items (especially if you are using those names and have recognizable components) you have crossed the line. 

 

Not quite. If they were, in fact, purchasing FFG's licensed products, cutting them up and then reselling them as destroyed models, then they're fine: they're protected under the first sale doctrine. It's effectively no different to, say, me buying a car from Ford, painting it, and reselling it to someone. I don't need Ford's permission to do that even though I'm selling something with the exact shape and interior and whatever that Ford would own copyrights on. Even if I sell it at a profit (maybe it's a really badass paint job) Ford has no right to stop me.

 

What was happening here, however, wasn't that. The debris they were selling came from a mould of an FFG product - they were effectively duplicating (i.e. counterfeiting) the IP and not paying the licensing fee. Same goes for the Nebulon B model - the design was a copyright protected Star Wars ship that they didn't have the IP owner's permission to sell.

 

The difference might seem pedantic, but it's important - the more people know about their rights and responsibilities when it comes to things like this, the more power we retain against large corporate interests, and that's always a good thing.

 

 

Makes me wonder how long before Mel's Miniatures gets a similar letter.

 

Yeah, Mel's won't last long once Disney finds out about it. That's also a clear area of IP infringement.

Edited by MacchuWA

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