Legal rights and laws for mods

    • Legal rights and laws for mods

      So as has been discussed in the The current state of the seeding update thread there aren'y any specific rules when it comes to mod makers making branded mods and releasing them as free mods.

      The questiong I hope we can answer here(maybe with some help from the german counter thread to this) is, is it actually legal to create a mod based on a real brand like a horsch seeder, without obtaining a license for it.

      Personally I'm of the belief that as long as it's free there shouldn't be a problem. If you charge money for a mod(donations not counting) then you are earning money on something you do not legally own the license to. You may have created the 3d model and textures but it's not your original idea unlike if you created a seeder made purely from your own imagination.

      But what are your thoughts? Do you have sources to any actual laws etc about modding games using branded models?

      Another fun thing would be to contact Horsch them selves and ask if they would take any legal actions if a modder created horsch machines as mods for CnC. This is based on a comment someone made in the german thread about now that horsch has cut all ties to other farm sim devs would this then have an affect on mods based on horsch products for those games.

      So yeah, let's see if we can't get to the bottom of this.

      i5 4690k - 3,5 Ghz, EVGA gtx 1070 ftw hybrid - 8 gb vram, 16 gb 1600 Mhz ddr3 ram
    • Jeytav wrote:

      Personally I'm of the belief that as long as it's free there shouldn't be a problem.
      This makes sense and it should be this way, according to "common sense". Other way is how the law sees it.

      However on the other hand depends on how is whole problematic understood. Let's take particular case with HORCH machines.
      HORCH machines are unable to be used in any games except those who has a license. Let's imagine, some modder create exact mod HORCH.
      Even if his art is for free (this means as stated above, it's legal), but he puts it to the game. And there is the question, if the model is allowed to be used in the game (even if not created by game dev) when the use is forbidden in general (for the specific game/s).

      Perhaps it is bulshit, but I'd like to know if some law even exists for this mod topic.

      Another look is, that this has never been solved when only one game was out. But when another strong competitor appeared, publishers of other farm game/s strat to be affraid to loose their money and start to drag or lure manufacturers to support just them.

      Finally I suggest, until there are handy artists and scripters through the comunity, mods always was, are and will be part of the games and noone will be able to stop it, at least officialy.

      CPU Type - Intel(R) Core(TM) i5-4460 CPU @ 3.20GHz
      GPU Type - Graphics Chipset AMD Radeon R9 280X 3,072 GB GDDR5
      GPU Driver - Radeon Software Version 17.12.1
      RAM - 8 GB
      Win 7 64bit
    • Good job on one hand, but on the other hand we may warn them about this and they could aim to check. I believe, I have useless fear.

      I wonder if they answer and what.

      CPU Type - Intel(R) Core(TM) i5-4460 CPU @ 3.20GHz
      GPU Type - Graphics Chipset AMD Radeon R9 280X 3,072 GB GDDR5
      GPU Driver - Radeon Software Version 17.12.1
      RAM - 8 GB
      Win 7 64bit
    • Ok so I'll try to sum up what we got in the German Thread as accurate as possible. Everything following is from @zet:

      There are a few different Property rights like: Word Mark, word and design mark, registered design and patent.
      What's protected: Protected is everything the applicants want's to be protected. These are things like a colord, a design, or the appearance.
      How are things protected: Most of the time it's protected within the branch. Hotel Horsch and Agricultural Horsch don't collide.
      How far does protection go: This is applicant specific: Only in the EU, International...
      What's the protection referring to: Things, digital work, Inventions...
      Where does the protection end: well you would have to look that up

      When can a modder get into trouble (Zet's opinion): A modder will get into trouble when he violates the corrosponding Property right in a way that the company is interested in punishing the violation. This would be something like using the Brand in a commercial way like creating a Mod and selling it for money. If you are modding private noone can do something about it.

      If a modder releases a mod on a Platform to share Mods (e.g. Ingame), the company behind the Game would be responsible for the content on the Platform. This means that e.g. MBB would be the one that has to deal with the violation and not the Modder. (The same goes for platforms like Modhoster)

      It's really hard to violate any property right's as a private modder. Problems mostly appear when you try to get commercially actove. But even in that case, it's not clear if property right's even apply on a hobby like Modding.
      (He's listing some examples about Modelling miniature Ships and Planes and stuff like that.)

      Lastly a property right most of the time is very clear and only applies to the corrosponding branch. See the example Horsch Hotel and Agriculture above.

      That's basically everything that makes sense in the German Thread about this.
      I am not a rights expert so I can't confirm how true all of this is but it sound very logical to me.
    • @TheCoCe i study law and can tell you that my statement are quite save. There is no guarantee of course but if you do not sell mods there should be no problems ;)

      in addition the right holder has to sue the modder and then they need an administrative assistance procedure to judgment in the country of the modder - thats expensive

      i hope you understand my bad english :(