Important Resurrecting Abandoned Mods

Discussion in 'Starbound Modding' started by mollygos, Feb 24, 2015.

  1. Naddox

    Naddox Cosmic Narwhal

    I think Chucklefish should put in a agreement thing for when submitting a mod that says if the mod becomes outdated and they do not touch it for say 3 months or have been inactive for a year, then the mod and all of its resources belong to the community. Then we wont ever have this issue again.
    CrimsonGiraffe likes this.
  2. The | Suit

    The | Suit Agent S. Forum Moderator

    CF can't claim ownership of other peoples works, well they could but you saw what happened to Facebook when they did.
    Anyway the best solution is for all mod authors to to explicitly give permission to anyone to continue the development of the mod after they leave.
  3. Naddox

    Naddox Cosmic Narwhal

    Well if they have to agree to the above, then its the mod authors agreeing to give the permission away should they abandon it.
  4. The | Suit

    The | Suit Agent S. Forum Moderator

    Right the problem is they would have to agree to it first.
    A person not around anymore can't agree to new rules.

    It would also result in unnecessary confusions - who agrree'd who didn't agree etc.
    Once 1.0 comes out and when Molly and the Devs have time to breathe and think on other issues
    I am sure they will figure out a better solution which won't get them into legal hot water before the game even releases.
  5. Alucard I

    Alucard I King Homestuck I

  6. Silent Strider

    Silent Strider Pangalactic Porcupine

    If you are the original author of the assets — which should, ideally, be reflected in the discontinued mod's description — then you should be free to give them to another author or create a mod using them yourself. After all, if that is the case, the author of the original mod was using your assets with your authorization, and you likely didn't sign an exclusivity deal for those assets :p

    Well, releasing the game assets under a ShareAlike Non-commercial CC license would do the trick for (most) mods created after the change. That license was drafted by IP lawyers and has been tested in court, after all. It would also prevent commercial reuse of the assets by someone else without first obtaining a specific license from Chucklefish.

    But that would be a policy change for the project. One that I would really welcome, but that I can't force or even expect. And it also wouldn't affect assets created from scratch, even if those assets are made to fit with the game's style, so the problem wouldn't completely go away. Plus, some modders aren't comfortable with the idea that others could take their tweaks without asking and use them as the basis of their own mods.

    Copying the idea is sure fine from a legal point of view, even if somewhat shunned in modding circles; copyright does not deal with ideas, after all. So, creating a new mod from scratch that does exactly the same as the old one, without using any assets from the old one, should be fine. Using, or modifying, assets from the older mod without authorization isn't.
    Dunto and The | Suit like this.
  7. Naddox

    Naddox Cosmic Narwhal

    I understand it wont affect currently released mods, I am saying for future mod releases so this issue doesn't happen again :p
  8. AstralGhost

    AstralGhost Pangalactic Porcupine

    Actually, like I was talking about earlier, you can in fact take the original and "modify" it, despite what the listing suggests. If you 'modify' it enough it is considered a 'derivative work' and copyright law protects yours. The trick is that each piece you take must be modified 'enough' to be considered an 'original work' of its own. If you only modify it a little, or if you modify some files but leave others as exact copies, then it cannot be considered an original and therefore the original author has all the rights.

    It's the same principle by which mods are protected under copyrights from the Game Devs. Technically mods aren't completely 'original' works since they necessarily have to use some of Starbound's code (and sometimes use its images). Ironically this principle is exactly why the Game Devs can't support others updating mods after an author leaves. The fact they are a 'derivative work' (modified files) means they are protected by copyright for the author, not the Devs.

    Tricky isn't it? :p
  9. Oddbrother

    Oddbrother Cosmic Narwhal

    It's worse than tricky, it's discouraging... for both the veteran and newbie to even want to continue work anymore.
  10. AstralGhost

    AstralGhost Pangalactic Porcupine

    What do you mean? This is only a problem for people who want to update abandoned mods. You can certainly still create new ones, including ones which do the same thing the old ones did.
    The | Suit likes this.
  11. Oddbrother

    Oddbrother Cosmic Narwhal

    Which only adds difficulty to what you can make and share with mods without risking a slap on the wrist for plagiarism. Again, this red tape is discouraging and disturbs what would otherwise have been a stable and ideal cycle.
  12. AstralGhost

    AstralGhost Pangalactic Porcupine

    It's the "red tape" of real life bureaucracy.
    Don't like it? Like I said, that's when you should become a Communist. ;)

    ... Seriously.
    Cyel likes this.
  13. The | Suit

    The | Suit Agent S. Forum Moderator

    You can make a mod with the same functionality no issue at all.
    Its just the art assets which are of primary concern.
    Dunto and Oddbrother like this.
  14. Oddbrother

    Oddbrother Cosmic Narwhal

    Thanks for clarifying. I feel better with that case being.
  15. graycatgrayhat

    graycatgrayhat Pangalactic Porcupine

    I know this thread is dead as well most outdated mods but here is a funny fact for everyone.

    Long story very short big evil EA did some tiny little good things once, please find the following site and EA's terms but I can give you the highlight here
    4. In exchange for the right to use content contributed by other users through the Software, when you contribute content through the Software, you expressly grant to other users of the Software the non-exclusive, perpetual, transferable, worldwide, irrevocable right to access and use, copy, modify, display, perform, and create and distribute derivative works from, your contributed content in connection with the Software, and to distribute and otherwise communicate your contributed content as a component of works that they create using the Software, for example, The Sims lots or The Sims videos, without further notice, attribution or compensation to you. You hereby waive any moral rights of paternity, publication, reputation, or attribution under applicable law with respect to EA.s and other players. use and enjoyment of such content contributions in connection with the Software.
  16. Morjax

    Morjax Void-Bound Voyager

    10/10, can confirm.[DOUBLEPOST=1434462945][/DOUBLEPOST]
    The problem I see with this is that it opens the door for mountains of spam. If the whole point of it is to contact a modder that cannot be contacted any other way (i.e. they've deliberately removed update emails of any sort), then you're just circumnavigating their decision to not be contactable. They have no way to opt out all together, and anyone can contact them for whatever they want to (even if it's meant as a tool to get a hold of modders). Just seems rather risky form a spam perspective.
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2015
  17. Nefer007

    Nefer007 Phantasmal Quasar

    Perhaps we should make a small fund for groups of modders (y'know, when a buncha people regularly get together to make mods on a regular basis) and make votes on abandoned mods to make them resurrectable by these groups.

    Take the old TouhouBound mod, for example. ReijiGazpacho has picked it up a little bit and ported it to Giraffe, but it's not up-to-date.
  18. L. F. Oxidizer

    L. F. Oxidizer Pangalactic Porcupine

    Dude, you just necroed a year old thread.
  19. Inf_Wolf14

    Inf_Wolf14 Parsec Taste Tester

    There is no problem is necro-ing a thread so long as the post is still relevant to the topic. In fact posting to point out said necro is also quite unproductive.

    Regrading your idea @Nefer007 , that would be a nice incentive to get mods updated; However, there still exists the barrier that nobody can touch someone else's assets or mod without explicit permission. Doing so, sadly, counts as a theft of the author's assets.
    lazarus78 likes this.
  20. bk3k

    bk3k Oxygen Tank

    Agreed, The email should only be an option for those that wish to be emailed, and thus chose to have it available. They may not want to expose themselves to the spam. As for the problem of which the thread was created, I would propose instead a system in which
    1. Someone (who wants to adopt a mod) could petition a moderator etc.
    2. The moderator emails the original author for permission. Thus no contact info is passed to another person.
    3. If given an affirmative answer, ownership of the mod is passed to the petitioner.

    And hat would mean not only having the rights to update the mod, but control of the original mod page. So people waiting on updates would get an alert. Of course the author could refuse or not reply, in which case the mod will not be transferred.

    When I took over the shipyard mod, there was no way to do this so I necessarily had to put up a new mod page. It would have been better than I could have taken over the original page.

    Also I think with 1.0 arriving soon, we'll see many of the old mods revived by their original authors as mod obsolescence should not be such a problem.

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