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News: Paul Reiche and Fred Ford want to continue the story they started when they created Star Control II — The Ur-Quan Masters. «Happy days and jubilation!» «But wait!» «There is something wrong here... something which makes my sheath retract and my talons ooze.» «Please, Captain, we need your help!»

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Author Topic: Regarding 'Star Control: Origins' and Stardock  (Read 12922 times)
meep-eep
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Re: Regarding 'Star Control: Origins' and Stardock
« Reply #15 on: September 23, 2018, 11:36:13 pm »

I think that was the end of the chain, correct? We’ve not threatened or interfered with this or any other fan community nor do we plan to.
This was the end of the chain.

This exchange, as you know, was two months ago.  I received your response and forwarded it on to BizDev and that was the end of it.
Almost. Unless the screenshots where you were shown having posted part of this exchange on your own private channel, with the 'eliminating the vile little community' remark, were fake.
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Re: Regarding 'Star Control: Origins' and Stardock
« Reply #16 on: September 23, 2018, 11:40:37 pm »


Almost true, but not quite.  My suggestion was to offer a unilateral license, not to try to get the UQM team to sign one:


I'm not sure that's actually possible. Both sides of a contract must give something for it to be a valid contract.

Considering that it is at least possible (despite Brad's insistence that the UQM project is not in commerce) that common law rights to the mark "The Ur-Quan Masters" (and alien names, if any count as marks) belong to Serge van den Boom, Mika Kolehmainen, Michael Chapman Martin, and Alex Volkov; signing anything before ownership details are settled sounds premature. Especially one that assigns any potential rights to Stardock.

The language of the proposed agreement "WHEREAS, Licensee is currently using the Marks..." implies that the UQM project is using them in commerce (that's what it means to be using a mark) and therefore has been, unopposed, since its creation.
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Frogboy
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Re: Regarding 'Star Control: Origins' and Stardock
« Reply #17 on: September 23, 2018, 11:46:52 pm »

I think that was the end of the chain, correct? We’ve not threatened or interfered with this or any other fan community nor do we plan to.
This was the end of the chain.

This exchange, as you know, was two months ago.  I received your response and forwarded it on to BizDev and that was the end of it.
Almost. Unless the screenshots where you were shown having posted part of this exchange on your own private channel, with the 'eliminating the vile little community' remark, were fake.


That privately made remark was made during the DMCA attacks in our game while simultaneously vile little comments were being made. A short time later, Death cleaned them up.  I’m not sure if you’ve been paying much attention lately but a lot of pretty nasty, personal attacks have been directed at me and yes, I confess that in private they have on occasion pissed me off. 

But that those private comments were not about UQM but the forum, have no connection to the license agreement and were still weeks ago regarding a situation that is no longer relevant.
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Re: Regarding 'Star Control: Origins' and Stardock
« Reply #18 on: September 23, 2018, 11:48:54 pm »

Just reading through the license agreements, and seeing if anything hasn't already been called out.

From v1:

Quote
"Licensee shall not (...) take any action to (...) detract from the value of the Mark.

It seems this would prohibit saying negative things about Stardock / boycotting SC:O?

Quote
Upon any such termination, Licensee shall immediately discontinue any use of the Mark, and shall take whatever action that Licensor directs with respect
to the disposition of any branding or other materials that bears the Mark

So, if the license gets revoked, the project is actually in a worse position than it started? Right now, there seems to be agreement on both sides that a license isn't necessary for the UQM, but a terminated license would still force them to stop using materials that they don't need a license to?

---

From v2:

v1 only claimed the UQM trademark, while this version instead specifies "including but not limited to the following marks: STAR CONTROL, THE UR-QUAN MASTERS, alien names, spaceship names, character designs and/or spaceship designs (collectively the “Marks”) "

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Should it at any time be determined that Licensee at any time established any rights to the Marks prior to the Effective Date of this Agreement, Licensee hereby agrees to assign and does assign any and all of its right, title and interest in and to said Marks and all goodwill associated therewith

Seriously Brad? This is the version that adds protections for the UQM?

Quote
It may only be terminated if there is a change in control of the project or if there is a violation of section 2 of this license.

A step up from "terminated at any cause", but section 2 is broad enough that I don't see a practical difference.
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kaminiwa
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Re: Regarding 'Star Control: Origins' and Stardock
« Reply #19 on: September 23, 2018, 11:56:04 pm »

I think that was the end of the chain, correct? We’ve not threatened or interfered with this or any other fan community nor do we plan to.

This exchange, as you know, was two months ago.  I received your response and forwarded it on to BizDev and that was the end of it.

It feels weird that this was the end of it - is there a reason you can't take the original agreement, drop the "3. Ownership" clause, and rewrite "5. Termination" to merely terminate the license instead of prohibiting even legal / "fair use" of the mark? I can't come up with a quick rewrite of "6. No Sublicensing", but I'd assume there's some common wording for assigning it to the project as a whole / allowing people to pass it down to their replacement if they leave the project.
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Re: Regarding 'Star Control: Origins' and Stardock
« Reply #20 on: September 24, 2018, 12:14:49 am »

I think that was the end of the chain, correct? We’ve not threatened or interfered with this or any other fan community nor do we plan to.

This exchange, as you know, was two months ago.  I received your response and forwarded it on to BizDev and that was the end of it.

It feels weird that this was the end of it - is there a reason you can't take the original agreement, drop the "3. Ownership" clause, and rewrite "5. Termination" to merely terminate the license instead of prohibiting even legal / "fair use" of the mark? I can't come up with a quick rewrite of "6. No Sublicensing", but I'd assume there's some common wording for assigning it to the project as a whole / allowing people to pass it down to their replacement if they leave the project.

My role is to deliver documents back and forth. If Serge wanted to modify it and send it back I would have forwarded his changes to the appropriate people and they’d evaluate.
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Elestan
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Re: Regarding 'Star Control: Origins' and Stardock
« Reply #21 on: September 24, 2018, 12:30:55 am »

Just to note where I think this plays into the case:

Stardock's application to register the "Ur-Quan Masters" trademark has recently been delayed because they have not been able to provide a valid proof of use in commerce.

If Serge had signed this license, Stardock would have been able to claim the availability of UQM downloads as its own use in commerce, and send them in to the trademark office to secure its claim.
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Re: Regarding 'Star Control: Origins' and Stardock
« Reply #22 on: September 24, 2018, 01:01:04 am »

But that those private comments were not about UQM but the forum, have no connection to the license agreement and were still weeks ago regarding a situation that is no longer relevant.

Okay... aaaand how exactly were you thinking of using "all out war" to shut down two individual fan forums while leaving their domains intact?

You can claim that was a baseless rant that you had no intention on acting on if you want, but to try and say you were thinking of only targeting forums when there's no reasonable way for you to do that without attempting to use your trademark claims to attack the overall sites they're hosted on is absurd.

Also, if fan attacks are getting to you this much, therapy is cheaper and more effective in the long run than "all out war" schemes.
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Re: Regarding 'Star Control: Origins' and Stardock
« Reply #23 on: September 24, 2018, 01:09:38 am »

Just to note where I think this plays into the case:

Stardock's application to register the "Ur-Quan Masters" trademark has recently been delayed because they have not been able to provide a valid proof of use in commerce.


It appears to be delayed because the specimens were not correctly accompanied by signed affidavits, because the use (sales of SCII) has been suspended, and queries about the ongoing litigation - but the specimens themselves were acceptable.
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Elestan
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Re: Regarding 'Star Control: Origins' and Stardock
« Reply #24 on: September 24, 2018, 01:34:29 am »

It appears to be delayed because the specimens were not correctly accompanied by signed affidavits, because the use (sales of SCII) has been suspended, and queries about the ongoing litigation - but the specimens themselves were acceptable.

That's the problem though:  With GoG sales suspended, Stardock is not currently using the "Ur-Quan Masters" mark in commerce - and cannot, unless they want to open themselves up to more copyright liability and potential DMCAs from P&F.  If they could use the UQM website as their own specimen of use in commerce, it would fix that problem.

EDIT:  Even the earlier GoG sales seem like a poor example of use in commerce, because for most of that time, the phrase "Ur-Quan Masters" was never displayed until the user was already playing the game.  It wasn't until the lawsuit started that Stardock began adding the subtitle to the store pages, and that was probably why P&F quickly DMCAed them.  Being able to claim UQM's usage as its own would give Stardock the ability to show continued use going all the way back to 2002 or so.
« Last Edit: September 24, 2018, 02:56:46 pm by Elestan » Logged
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Re: Regarding 'Star Control: Origins' and Stardock
« Reply #25 on: September 24, 2018, 01:52:06 am »

i came back to just say wow and WOW...dont sign anything...i'm speaking for myself, but i want nothing from stardock or their game...i want a true sequel to star control 2 : the ur quan masters and the only ones qualified to deliver that is fred and paul...end of story.
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Re: Regarding 'Star Control: Origins' and Stardock
« Reply #26 on: September 24, 2018, 02:57:17 am »

Just a personal message to Brad: I can understand  where you're coming from. I think fan communities can be vile and malignant sometimes, particularly when people have little skin in the game (and sometimes even where they do). But honestly, taking this line of attack (with both Fred & Paul, and the community) is no good. Only lawyers win.
The best case scenario is where Fred & Paul keep all story/character rights, you get to keep sc1/sc2/sc3 on gog (which serves as marketing for both games - I don't agree that UQM can't coexist with an official sc2 gog release), and everybody goes their separate ways. But the constant back and forth of  - let's be honest - legal dick-measuring - harms everyone except the lining of the justice system.

I hope you can resolve it, particularly with your game being in the clear now.
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Re: Regarding 'Star Control: Origins' and Stardock
« Reply #27 on: September 24, 2018, 03:45:35 am »

I am glad that the organizers of this community and this project have not signed anything with Stardock.

I am glad that no one is buying the public spin.

Please, everyone, be careful. And if anyone from Stardock approaches you with a legal offer, or a legal threat for that matter, I'd encourage you to ignore it. When in doubt, share it, or even send someone (e.g.: me) a private message.
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rosepatel
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Re: Regarding 'Star Control: Origins' and Stardock
« Reply #28 on: September 24, 2018, 06:18:53 am »

I would like to think that most of you understand the difference between being angry versus acting on that anger.  

Most of us do. The question is, do you?

You have an anger problem. It runs deeper than weird toxic outbursts that you try to spin after the fact.

You yourself have done more damage to your own company with your angry outbursts than the edited GOTP announcement.

Even ignoring your public words, your public actions with the lawsuit have cost your company far more than the edited GOTP announcement. And the lawsuit itself is so obviously a crusade by a deeply insecure and angry person, who lashed out and is now stubbornly clinging to a grudge, instead of picking up the phone and settling on an obvious compromise.

See a therapist. It's way cheaper.
« Last Edit: September 24, 2018, 06:32:17 am by rosepatel » Logged
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Re: Regarding 'Star Control: Origins' and Stardock
« Reply #29 on: September 24, 2018, 12:38:38 pm »

Quote from: Frogboy
This was urged on by the community. The threads in question are publicly available for anyome to read and verify.
But like I said, we aren’t the ones who pushed for this. If UQM doesn’t want to sign an agreement, then don’t.
So noble of Stardock to want to "protect" the UQM open source project - almost out of the blue... until people read what the CEO really thinks of the community. Have some shame please. It's sickening.

Quote from: Elestan
Just to note where I think this plays into the case:

Stardock's application to register the "Ur-Quan Masters" trademark has recently been delayed because they have not been able to provide a valid proof of use in commerce.
Nice catch.
« Last Edit: September 24, 2018, 12:40:41 pm by tingkagol » Logged
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