The Third Doctrinal War -- Stardock, Reiche/Ford, and Star Control


Yeah, probably. But the ® and TM together make them look awfully desperate.


You didn’t just confuse “creators” with “owners” did you? WAIT!! Yes, of course you did!

There is no law that prevents people from laying credit claim to works. But there are laws which prohibit people from claiming ownership to said works.


No, he didn’t. Thrag’s language was quite precise, and there was no such confusion.


I didn’t confuse anything. You are apparently again the confused one. If you can’t follow a conversation how about staying out of it and stop trying to turn everything into an arguement.


You said:

I was watching the trailer to “The Outer Worlds” and I noticed an interesting parallel to this case. In the trailer there’s big text reading “from the original creators of Fallout”. Similar to how Paul and Fred list themselves as the creators of Star Control II. Fallout is of course trademarked by Bethesda. Obsidian is currently owned by Microsoft and AFAIK currently has no relationship with Bethesda or license to use Fallout.

If you go back to the historical P&F claims, they went beyond just being “creators of…”, which isn’t comparable to the claims made by Obsidian for The Outer Worlds. That’s what I was talking about. If that’s not what you intended, then fine - OK.


btw, here is the video in question. FF to @ 1:20


Is the US the only country with such poorly written and inane trademark laws, or are European countries just as bad?


I find myself wondering if I ever created anything worth claiming ownership of…



Well if you’re wondering, then the answer is probably no. Shitposting doesn’t count. LOL!


Some new docs were posted on courtlistener last week. They seem mostly procedural. One is regarding the request to file a fourth amended complaint but it just says there will be written ruling rather than a hearing.

One of them is Valve’s answer to P&F counterclaim. I started skimming through it but it’s mainly pages of “Valve lacks knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief about the truth of…” and my eyes glazed over before I ran across anything interesting. Perhaps someone with a greater immunity to long repetitive legal documents can dig to see if there’s anything significant in there.

Outside the suit there has been a pretty major development in copyright law just recently. The Blurred Lines suit has set a precedent that a song that just copies the “vibe” of another, even if it does not directly copy exact elements, can be found to be infringing. We’ve heard a lot of talk from Stardock about how copyright only applies to direct copying from a specific fixed representation. The argument that since they are not using the exact art of the Arilou from SC2 it’s can’t possibly be considered copying. The decision in the Blurred Lines case goes directly against that notion. Even without direct and literal copying, if similarities are substantial enough copyright infringement can occur.


I’m not familiar enough with the music to compare Blurred Lines with Marvin Gaye’s original song. I hope it doesn’t mean Shadowrun’s cyberpunk “vibes” and Tolkien-esque elves, dwarves, etc. are now copyright violations. But I guess all progress comes at a price.


Weren’t most Alien races in SC2 also drawn from fairly standard sci-fi archetypes? Is so, both games are actually infringing on yet another third party, correct?


Except for the very generic human starfleet or whatever, I would say the exact opposite is true about the series. The alien races were super creative, cute and often bizarre.

Not trolling. But, when talking about something that is truly great like SC2…


So i’m cleaning and sorting out my disaster house and found this. Thought of this thread.


Wow… look at what it says there with those ©’s!


Actually look at those Cs. I’m not sure what to make of it.

IE, to be clear, what is the difference between “Star Control” and “Star Control Game”, and is Accolade asserting copyright over their trademark or over … is it a joint copyright?


Looks pretty clear to me. Accolade owned the name. Paul and Fred own everything else, and they are credited as the Designers. This is exactly what everyone thought before Stardock created fake news.


Accolade also appears to have owned the copyright on the packaging.


Those assholes!


Some minor movement in the case. The injunction requested by Stardock is denied.

Have only skimmed it a bit, but here are some choice quotes:

Moreover, setting aside any evidentiary deficiencies, the Court agrees with Defendants that the threatened harm is of Plaintiff’s “own making.” … As aptly observed by Defendants, “Stardock announced the release date and launched its marketing campaign for Origins in June 2018—long after this case was at issue and Stardock was well aware of Reiche and Ford’s allegation that Origins infringed their copyrighted work. Stardock could have suspended development, or at least postposed the marketing and release of Origins until this case resolves who owns the copyrights to the content at issue and whether Stardock’s planned use of certain content infringes. Instead, Stardock did nothing to avoid the purported risk of irreparable harm that it now bases its motion on, and Stardock announced the release of Origins in the middle of this case and ramped up its spending.” Id. Plaintiff does not directly respond to this point. Further scrutiny of its alleged harm supports Defendants’ argument, however.

Many of the parties’ objections are frivolous. For example, Plaintiff objects to Reiche’s declaration, “I created the concept for the Star Control computer game,” on the ground that it lacks foundation. Dkt. 66-12 at 2. Clearly Reiche has personal knowledge as to what he did or did not create. See Fed. R. Evid. 602 (a witness’s own testimony may support a finding that he has personal knowledge of the matter to which he testifies). On the other hand, the merit of other objections is obvious. For example, Defendants object to Wardell’s declaration, “Stardock has not incorporated any copyrightable artwork from Star Control I, Star Control II, or Star Control III into the Origins game itself,” on the ground that Wardell lacks the expertise necessary to opine as to what constitutes “copyrightable artwork.” Dkt. 64-26 at 2-3. Indeed, not only has Wardell failed to establish any such expertise, but his opinion as to whether the work in question is “copyrightable” constitutes an improper legal conclusion.