CBS Shuts Down Fan-Made Recreation of USS Enterprise

Discussion in 'HardForum Tech News' started by Megalith, Sep 29, 2018.

  1. Megalith

    Megalith 24-bit/48kHz Staff Member

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    Scragnog, the lead developer for “Stage 9,” a virtual fan-made recreation of Star Trek: The Next Generation’s USS Enterprise NCC-1701-D, has been forced to terminate the project after receiving a cease-and-desist letter from CBS. The developers made it clear Stage 9 was just a fan project with no financial incentives, but that didn’t appear to make any difference.

    “This letter was a cease-and-desist order,” Scragnog explains. “Over the next 13 days we did everything we possibly could to open up a dialog with CBS. The member of the CBS legal team that issued the order went on holiday for a week immediately after sending the letter through, which slowed things down considerably.”
     
  2. Krenum

    Krenum [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Rather than give this person credit for the awesome work they have done, CBS continues to be an asshole. And they wonder why nobody watches their shitty programming.
     
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  3. Delicieuxz

    Delicieuxz Gawd

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    Receiving a cease & desist notice doesn't automatically mean that the C&D is valid. Companies sometimes send a C&D and hope the intimidation factor will stop the activities, despite there being no legal avenue for the company to stop the activities.

    If the fan project didn't involve any of CBS technology, didn't claim their trademarks as their own, and had no commercial factor to it, then I think it wouldn't be possible for CBS to do anything against it.
     
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  4. Neapolitan6th

    Neapolitan6th [H]ard|Gawd

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  5. rudedog

    rudedog Gawd

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    If their using the likeness of the main star ship in their work and calling it the same name then it's a violation of copyright. Just because you don't make any money from it does not mean its ok.

    With that said, CBS still sucks
     
  6. And after you spend tons of money and hours on a defense in court, you might be lucky enough to still be able to pay the hosting bill, assuming you even get a ruling in your favor.
     
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  7. Neapolitan6th

    Neapolitan6th [H]ard|Gawd

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    Honestly, if anyone were developing something they knew would likely get a C&D, they should mask their identity and just seed it to influencers and have it released on the shadier parts of the internet. Keep some plausible deniability.

    Never take the credit, never take the blame, freedom to keep developing.
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2018
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  8. Delicieuxz

    Delicieuxz Gawd

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    Or, the company doesn't follow through on its threat, or the court dismisses the case after the defendant points out that they didn't violate fair use. If you're going argue a claim of fair use in the US, just make the argument in a motion to dismiss.

    If the project hasn't been distributed, as it hasn't in this case, there are no damages for the C&D-sending company to possibly be compensated for. And without the project being distributed, there is nothing the company can do against it anymore than Disney could sue you for drawing a picture of Mickey Mouse.

    Rather than giving into the idea of being helpless against corporate overlords, people should become aware of the law so that companies lose the power to intimidate people and projects.
     
  9. iamjanco

    iamjanco Limp Gawd

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    Was it because they didn't have any cartoon alphabet people playing a role?

    What about a Klingon cartoon alphabet person? They could make jokes about, well, you know what...
     
  10. Celeryman

    Celeryman Limp Gawd

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    This kind of crap makes me so mad. In my opinion, this project and many others like it stand to benefit CBS by keeping the ST fanbase energized (see what I did there :). I love Star Trek, but hate CBS.
     
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  11. Dan_D

    Dan_D [H]ard as it Gets

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    This happened a few years ago when a guy re-created the Enterprise from Star Trek: The Next Generation using the Unreal engine. It wasn't a game or something with anything to gain financially, and they made him shut it down and even remove videos of the project from Youtube. So this is nothing more than history repeating itself.

    Seriously CBS, you are all a bunch of whiny, greedy fucking douchebags. If anything, fan made creations such as the one discussed here are like free advertising. You should be grateful and not generate bad PR by being assholes.
     
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  12. Krenum

    Krenum [H]ardForum Junkie

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    They're just mad because the fan made stuff is miles better & more interesting than anything they can come up with or promote.
     
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  13. Arcygenical

    Arcygenical Will Watercool for Crack

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    How is this any different than anything Nintendo does?
     
  14. dR.Jester

    dR.Jester 2[H]4U

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    A quick Google search can yield the torrent download. Its pretty detailed and neat to check out. Crazy part is, this is better than anything I've played from a major game studio contracted to officially build a game related to Star Trek. CBS should have hired these guys!
     
  15. Dan_D

    Dan_D [H]ard as it Gets

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    That's not generally true. The fan fiction stuff is generally fucking awful.
     
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  16. MikeTrike

    MikeTrike [H]ardness Supreme

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    Shitbags, Inc.

    about_cbs_700x525.jpg
     
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  17. c3k

    c3k 2[H]4U

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    hmm, maybe if they'd just acquiesced to Les Moonves' advances, they'd still be able to do their project?

    I'm sorry, Les, did that cross a line?
     
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  18. Elf_Boy

    Elf_Boy 2[H]4U

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    QTF
     
  19. RogueTadhg

    RogueTadhg [H]ard|Gawd

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    CBS owns Star Trek?

    I understand the legal complications behind shutting down the fan creation, but you could also embrace the fan-based creation to get the same result. It still shows you have every interest in protecting your IP and quality by giving oversight. It might've been better without using actor's likeness.
     
  20. Siersoren

    Siersoren [H]Lite

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    I lost interest in the new Star Trek Discovery series when it posted a picture of a bunch of the actors kneeling in protest of the anthem or some such nonsense.
     
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  21. OFaceSIG

    OFaceSIG [H]ard|Gawd

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    This is the kind of shit that makes people hate corporate America. As was said before, this is free advertising. Asswipes.
     
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  22. steakman1971

    steakman1971 2[H]4U

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    Devils advocate here...companies do have to exert control over their intellectual property. I'd still rather them try a different path than just lawyer up.
     
  23. Celeryman

    Celeryman Limp Gawd

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    This is so sad. I am not surprised, because I don't think there is a single conservative Star Trek actor. It's like it is a prerequisite for them to be liberal. Heck it is probably on the casting call sheets for all I know. I love the show but don't care at all for nearly all of their political views.

    That said, I like to think that most of them are good people. I can say that Denise Crosby and Garret Wang are very nice in person. Both were more than willing to talk to me and my family at length. Heck, I even have a picture somewhere of Denise holding my infant son.
     
  24. Dekoth-E-

    Dekoth-E- [H]ardness Supreme

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    Ah CBS continuing to alienate one of the most loyal and active Fan bases on the entire planet. This should end well for them.
     
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  25. aokman

    aokman Gawd

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    CBS needs to die in a fkn fire
     
  26. Qthulu

    Qthulu [H]Lite

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    If you make a fan film series and its low production value or it sucks then cbs is okay with it. But if its fan made and its good..................then they sue. For almost 15 years fan made star trek stuff was allowed......until prelude to axanar because star trek fans loved it.
     
  27. Kinestron

    Kinestron [H]Lite

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    I didn't watch the whole thing but I watched enough to be floored by the passion and detail this person has for TNG and what a wonderful piece of art for fans. Screw you, CBS. If there was even the remotest chance I would subscribe to your stupid channel, you definitely now killed it as you killed this wonderful project.
     
  28. Arcygenical

    Arcygenical Will Watercool for Crack

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    A lot of the CBS family are very nice people but their lawyers are shrewd beyond belief, and some of the best in their business.
     
  29. Gideon

    Gideon 2[H]4U

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    A shame seemed like a real nice piece of work, figures CBS would kill it.
     
  30. Vader1975

    Vader1975 Gawd

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    Fear not the new generations don’t even know what Star Trek is so soon this CBS bs won’t matter
     
  31. M76

    M76 [H]ardForum Junkie

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    It isn't. And honest people like me, hate both :D
     
  32. Chebsy

    Chebsy Gawd

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    Looks like a lot of work has already gone into this. Its a shame that CBS can't just agree to take a cut and let them get on with its development.
     
  33. Draax

    Draax [H]ardness Supreme

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    It’s weird that people still don’t understand why people are kneeling. The cast was showing solidarity with the NFL protests which have NEVER had anything to do with disrespecting the anthem, the flag, or military personel. In fact Colin Kaepernick knelt for the anthem after consulting with multiple veterans groups. The kneeling suggestion actually came from former Seahawks player and Green Beret Nate Boyer.

    Star Trek has ALWAYS been one of the more openly liberal shows of all time which was entirely the intention of Gene Roddenberry.
     
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  34. RealBeast

    RealBeast Gawd

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    Another day, another shitty move by corporate America -- MSGA (Make StarTrek Great Again). ;)
     
  35. fs123

    fs123 Limp Gawd

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    So if a fan makes artwork of their favorite show is that subject to a cease and desist order are well? What about all the cosplays at conventions? This ship model is essentially artwork and they weren't even charging for it. CBS should be boycotted.
     
  36. heatlesssun

    heatlesssun [H]ard as it Gets

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    While I don't like what's going on here CBS does a have legitimate concerns. What's needed is some sort of fan licensing deal that allows non-commercial development of Star Trek IP while ensuring CBS IP rights.
     
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  37. Draax

    Draax [H]ardness Supreme

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    If you have ever tried to make anything related to warhammer it is truly amazing how fast gamesworkshop can fire off cease and desist letters.
     
  38. jnemesh

    jnemesh [H]ard|Gawd

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    CBS is where Trek went to die. It's clear with Discovery that they want nothing whatsoever to do with the "Prime" timeline, and will kill ANY attempt to revisit that timeline, in ANY form. They want to merge the Prime and Kelvin timelines and regain control from Paramount. Anything that doesn't serve this purpose is killed. Screw Trek, it's done. Along with Star Wars, capitalism has utterly destroyed both franchises. I have been a fan since early childhood (where I was subjected to episodes of TOS at full TV volume at my grandfathers' house), but after 40 years, it's dead to me, I am moving on.
     
  39. It's easy to say when you are not the one facing it for a project you do in your free time. Most people are just going to drop it.

    You also have a lot of "if" in there. Sadly cases are not so simple, and you are betting your whole position on the judge dismissing the case in the early stages. Fair use is very hard to prove or show before a trial, and you can be willing to bet this would without a doubt go to trial. It might be easy if this was someone using a video clip in a documentary about Star Trek or the like, but it is not, it is a fully derivative work that does have the ability to impact future market value if CBS decided to make a similar work.

    Dismissing at an early stage for such a case as this would never happen as the court would only have the factual allegations to consider, it is also not a transformative or parody, as the point was to be as exact as possible. You may not like what they are doing, and you might not think it would go to court, but it often doesn't work that way. It was a project that had been going on for some time, and had a number of people involved, it is not something that will be dismissed, at least not in the early stages until everything is reviewed and claims shown to have or not have merit. And with something like this, they could drag on a while. Facing something like that for people who have lives and jobs to think about, very few people are going to try and fight it, no matter how many "if" or "but" you throw in.

    As for "not distributed", I am not sure what you mean, as the game had over 10 releases, from mac, windows, to even mobile. The creator even admitted that the game had many direct aspects of the official games (like bridge crew), called it Enterprise-D and even the projects name of "Stage 9", and copyright and said they knew it could be ended at any time.

    The creator of the game was moving in that direction, because they all knew how close they were, and that it could be ended at any time, so they were working up something to approach CBS for a derivative license, but he ended up putting that to the side to work more on the project, he said thinking about it now, that might have been a mistake due to how fast it was moving and the development team was growing fast. He said it might not have worked out either, but at this point it is to late to go back.
     
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  40. zalazin

    zalazin [H]ard|Gawd

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    All CBS can do is crappy sitcoms and Crime crap... Sci fi is beyond their meager intelect... plus they are asshats...