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Calling out to all Battlestar Galactica modders!!! (Forums : General Banter : Calling out to all Battlestar Galactica modders!!!) Locked
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Oct 15 2011, 8:35am Anchor

I just had to create an account (after 1.5 years of watching mods related to BSG and Star Trek on this website) to write something on this thread.

I was very sad and displeased with what had happened, but like my father told me numerous times while growing up, 'sh!t happens'.

But that isn't what I really wanted to relay.

With the amount of talent and potential, how about a coordination between all the BSG modgroups and discuss a project plan that could be sent to NBC?
I know you guys, including myself, love to mod but what about making a game? Imagine all the mods everyone made were implemented into one solid game? With multiple gamemodes and stories and whatnot?

I started playing BSG-Online, but it is nothing compared to the hours I have spent playing Nexus: Battlestar Galactica and Homeworld 2: Battlestar Galactica Fleet Commander (which I still play during my freetime and drool over the little details the modding groups had created specifically for the content).

I know how hard it is to do a side-project with 'real-life and family and whatnot' going on in our lives, but hey...it could prove and lead to something amazing. Sure, it'll be rough at the start but you guys would eventually learn how to run like Bungie did with their Halo game. If 5 or 9 recent college graduates could pull off making games, why not 20 to 30 modders who are devoted to the BSG fan-community?

Of course, the idea would have to be run by NBC for approval, but...

My point is. Don't bother asking NBC for permission to continue creating mods (unless you don't have too much sparetime). Ask about creating a project that will surpass BSG-Online! Of course, you guys would have to get together via email/voicechat on your freetime, but hey? I gaurentee you guys will have hundreds, if not thousands, of supporters to support you guys! Not to mention content ideas/creations!

Just draw up a plan, submit it to NBC, create a roughdraft/outline for a game (have your ideas protected though, just incase NBC steals it), and throw it at them! See what they think?

I'm terribly sorry if most of this seemed repetitive and whatnot, but I believe in you guys. Your mods help keep a smile on my face when I come home from work and during breaks from studying. (I'm still trying to teach myself how to become a modder. Can't tell you the number of ideas that flood through my head, but it's a bit tough teaching yourself how to read C++ and other languages)

I'm not even going to give my two-cents on moddb's actions lol.

I'll be checking this thread out every other day to see what you guys think. Just remember I support you guys.

SO SAY WE ALL!

Oct 15 2011, 11:47am Anchor

Each mod team has their own ideas on what they want - that's WHY there are multiple mods. Too many chefs, too many opinions. You're not going to find a consensus when merging this many teams together. I already work fulltime at a game studio here in Texas, I'm not looking to create a full retail product "on the side". I just want to work on something small, fun and free.

On a side note, after some digging I've gotten some interesting information:

Someone wrote:Exodus, a newcomer in the BSG fan roleplay world staffed by long time members of the community, took up the cause and recruited Anthony Hasledge of the 'IFT Sci-Fi Alliance', to open dialogue with licensing executives and resolve the trademark issue. Other former and current BSG sim owners joined the effort, as did players from every quarter of the BSG roleplay community. Their efforts were successful and, so long as the BSG sims in Second Life comply with a set of rules including no sale of any products related to BSG, they are allowed to continue. As of February 5, 2011, Universal has allowed fair-use of intellectual property related to Battlestar Galactica. 

 This BSG content in Second Life got approved under fair use law and it looks like NBCU has globally allowed BSG IP use under fair use law, as late as February of THIS YEAR. We really need to hit NBCU back with this information, because if Second Life can do it, we sure as hell can, too. Even if that means forming a political "alliance" or signing an online petition - ANYTHING to get their attention. We're all fans of the IP and we don't make any money doing this, we do it for the love of it. 

Jok3r098
Jok3r098 “A computer is like air conditioning – it becomes useless when you open Windows” - Linus Torvals
Oct 15 2011, 2:29pm Anchor
Someone wrote:
jstubbles wrote:Each mod team has their own ideas on what they want - that's WHY there are multiple mods. Too many chefs, too many opinions. You're not going to find a consensus when merging this many teams together. I already work fulltime at a game studio here in Texas, I'm not looking to create a full retail product "on the side". I just want to work on something small, fun and free.

On a side note, after some digging I've gotten some interesting information:

Someone wrote:Exodus, a newcomer in the BSG fan roleplay world staffed by long time members of the community, took up the cause and recruited Anthony Hasledge of the 'IFT Sci-Fi Alliance', to open dialogue with licensing executives and resolve the trademark issue. Other former and current BSG sim owners joined the effort, as did players from every quarter of the BSG roleplay community. Their efforts were successful and, so long as the BSG sims in Second Life comply with a set of rules including no sale of any products related to BSG, they are allowed to continue. As of February 5, 2011, Universal has allowed fair-use of intellectual property related to Battlestar Galactica. 

 This BSG content in Second Life got approved under fair use law and it looks like NBCU has globally allowed BSG IP use under fair use law, as late as February of THIS YEAR. We really need to hit NBCU back with this information, because if Second Life can do it, we sure as hell can, too. Even if that means forming a political "alliance" or signing an online petition - ANYTHING to get their attention. We're all fans of the IP and we don't make any money doing this, we do it for the love of it. 



I'm certainly no lawyer, but I dont think that fair use should have anything to do with these cases, from what i've read here: Fairuse.stanford.edu  It only really covers using materials from the original in order to document it in some way whether parody, or critisisms, or in google images' thumbnails cases just to demonstrate it.

What modders and indie gamemakers here are doing is re-creating film content from scratch, and telling their own stories. Im sure there is some form of legislation that protects this sort of work and fan fiction etc, but i dont think its fair use.

Unless I have completley the wrong end of the stick

Either way, it looks like what really did the leg-work for the second-life roleplayers was opening a dialogue with the licensing executives, theres no reason that couldnt work here, and it is definatley worth a go!

*EDIT*
on the other hand the site also says this:

Stanford wrote:In a 1994 case, the Supreme Court emphasized this first factor as being a primary indicator of fair use. At issue is whether the material has been used to help create something new or merely copied verbatim into another work. When taking portions of copyrighted work, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Has the material you have taken from the original work been transformed by adding new expression or meaning?
  • Was value added to the original by creating new information, new aesthetics, new insights, and understandings?

 


Which i should think definatly encompasses the BSG indie games and mods

Edited by: Jok3r098

Oct 16 2011, 11:34pm Anchor

Well, I wrote to NBC and they responded earlier today with a very despondent letter stating that the alleged intelectual property infingement is an internal matter between NBCU and Moddb, and does not concern any of the people who played the mods. They went on to say that they do not care if we are still in possession of any of these mods, as long as we do not spread them. They did not comment on any of the points about the mod teams, or about allowing the mods to come back, but instead insisted that they have the rights of the property holders, and the fans in mind when the descision was made to contact Mod-database. They also stated that this matter is not open for further discussion. Anyone else get a simialar response? Seems like they never understood what these "mods" were, mabye because of the negative implications that come with the word "Modding", it is in the same veign as hacking and pirating if you havn't spent time actually adding onto and improving a game yourself. The only difference here is NBC saw their property and the word "Mod" together on OTAKU and acted like their work was being messed up by infants with chocolate-covered hands, when in fact we were creating wonderful art :/

Oct 16 2011, 11:43pm Anchor
romnus wrote:Well, I wrote to NBC and they responded earlier today with a very despondent letter stating that the alleged intelectual property infingement is an internal matter between NBCU and Moddb, and does not concern any of the people who played the mods. They went on to say that they do not care if we are still in possession of any of these mods, as long as we do not spread them. They did not comment on any of the points about the mod teams, or about allowing the mods to come back, but instead insisted that they have the rights of the property holders, and the fans in mind when the descision was made to contact Mod-database. They also stated that this matter is not open for further discussion. Anyone else get a simialar response? Seems like they never understood what these "mods" were, mabye because of the negative implications that come with the word "Modding", it is in the same veign as hacking and pirating if you havn't spent time actually adding onto and improving a game yourself. The only difference here is NBC saw their property and the word "Mod" together on OTAKU and acted like their work was being messed up by infants with chocolate-covered hands, when in fact we were creating wonderful art :/

That's pretty much what I expected to be honest, which means no more BSG mods.

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Oct 17 2011, 1:00am Anchor

I'm not giving up. This is just more red tape. Keep emailing them. Again and again. Do not stop. Annoy them, pester them, enrage them. We need their attention because we are not stopping this mod. We can create our own website if need be and paste BSGOnline banners everywhere, that's fine by me. But we are NOT stopping this mod.

ind1
ind1 Evil Genius
Oct 17 2011, 7:28am Anchor

It just means no more BSG mods on moddb internet is a big place people

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Hi

Jok3r098
Jok3r098 “A computer is like air conditioning – it becomes useless when you open Windows” - Linus Torvals
Oct 17 2011, 2:31pm Anchor

It also means "You have been warned" should any bsg content be 'spread' as they put it they would quickly take us to court no doubt. Universal pisses me off :@

I would suggest a boycott, but given their size theres just no avoiding all their products. and boycotting battlestar seems a little self defeating :P

Oct 17 2011, 2:58pm Anchor
Jok3r098 wrote:It also means "You have been warned" should any bsg content be 'spread' as they put it they would quickly take us to court no doubt. Universal pisses me off :@

I would suggest a boycott, but given their size theres just no avoiding all their products. and boycotting battlestar seems a little self defeating :P


Pretty much this. Your mods have been taken down here, and they're treating that as a warning to you. If you do decide to post the mods on other sites, or (probably even worse) get your own domain name, then you can expect a lawsuit.

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Jok3r098
Jok3r098 “A computer is like air conditioning – it becomes useless when you open Windows” - Linus Torvals
Oct 17 2011, 3:08pm Anchor

But anonamously posting on some chineese site might be posible :P lol

Oct 17 2011, 7:10pm Anchor

I wouldn't advise posting it on some chinese site. If NBCU couldn't find the person who posted the mod (if and when they would find it on another site), then they would just go straight for the creator and blame him/her for it. Would just make things worse.

Just keep sending polite letters to NBCU. Just don't send a thousand letters. One a week per person outta help a little bit.

Gibberstein
Gibberstein Generic Coder Type Thing
Oct 18 2011, 3:11am Anchor

No, DO send a thousand, as long as they are all from a different person. Get a million people if you can. Nothing changes corporate policy better than evidence that something was a PR disaster ;)

Letters are definitely better than email. Emails are quick to do, and easier to astroturf. Writing and posting a letter shows you took a bit more care.

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- Wraiyth points out the craziness of stereotyping games by their genre

Jok3r098
Jok3r098 “A computer is like air conditioning – it becomes useless when you open Windows” - Linus Torvals
Oct 18 2011, 6:52am Anchor

I dunno, big companies have not been known to listen very well to their customers even with a big pettition (Universal, Adobe (Linux support for Creative suite had alot of votes took them ages to even acknowledge it), Hell even Canonical with their Unity thing)

Oct 18 2011, 8:19am Anchor

Companies don't care about their customers in situations like this cause what are we going to do? Stop watching Battlestar Galactica? Not buy the game so many people on this forum have openly bad-mouthed?

Why would they give a damn about anything the fans of the TV show (basically their only investment in this) say, think or do unless it meant that there would be less people watching the show or buying it on DVD. If you want to get the mods reinstated on ModDB you need to show NBC Universal that the mods increase the value of their product in some way. Which means they don't need to hear from loyal followers of the TV show who have been watching it from Day One. They need to be hearing from people who didn't care about BSG until they found a mod for a game they already liked, played it AND THEN started watching the show. Better yet, people who played the game and then bought the DVDs.

Show the companies that mods make them money, and they'll listen. That's the direction I've been approaching this from. If you are someone who found the show that way, post on here, tell us which mod brought made you a BSG fan. That's going to do more than any simple petition.

Jok3r098
Jok3r098 “A computer is like air conditioning – it becomes useless when you open Windows” - Linus Torvals
Oct 18 2011, 9:16am Anchor
Karajorma wrote:Companies don't care about their customers in situations like this cause what are we going to do? Stop watching Battlestar Galactica? Not buy the game so many people on this forum have openly bad-mouthed?

Why would they give a damn about anything the fans of the TV show (basically their only investment in this) say, think or do unless it meant that there would be less people watching the show or buying it on DVD. If you want to get the mods reinstated on ModDB you need to show NBC Universal that the mods increase the value of their product in some way. Which means they don't need to hear from loyal followers of the TV show who have been watching it from Day One. They need to be hearing from people who didn't care about BSG until they found a mod for a game they already liked, played it AND THEN started watching the show. Better yet, people who played the game and then bought the DVDs.

Show the companies that mods make them money, and they'll listen. That's the direction I've been approaching this from. If you are someone who found the show that way, post on here, tell us which mod brought made you a BSG fan. That's going to do more than any simple petition.


Good Point!, i Only found BSG Recently through Diaspora!

Oct 18 2011, 4:50pm Anchor

Because Battlestar Galactica: Fleet commander featured skirmishes from both TV series, I bought The origional series and the new series on DVD. One of the best investments I've made for a long time from NBC, and it all stemmed from playing a free, quality mod that was made for fans by the fans. :)

Oct 18 2011, 10:00pm Anchor
romnus wrote:Because Battlestar Galactica: Fleet commander featured skirmishes from both TV series, I bought The origional series and the new series on DVD. One of the best investments I've made for a long time from NBC, and it all stemmed from playing a free, quality mod that was made for fans by the fans. :)

Unfortunately, they see it as lost profit since you didn't play their game.

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Oct 18 2011, 10:54pm Anchor

People keep saying that. Who says that BigPoint didn't just pay for the licence up front?

Oct 19 2011, 7:50am Anchor
Karajorma wrote:People keep saying that. Who says that BigPoint didn't just pay for the licence up front?

Still, you haven't.

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Oct 20 2011, 8:12pm Anchor

umm, I did play their game, and it was SHITE :P

Assaultman67
Assaultman67 Needs a fuckin' title
Oct 21 2011, 2:51am Anchor
Gibberstein wrote:No, DO send a thousand, as long as they are all from a different person. Get a million people if you can. Nothing changes corporate policy better than evidence that something was a PR disaster ;)

Letters are definitely better than email. Emails are quick to do, and easier to astroturf. Writing and posting a letter shows you took a bit more care.



This.

Companies understand how people think quite well. If you can demonstrate alot of people are very concerned about it. IT will change their tune unless they want to lose money or damage their franchise more. Make as big of a deal out of it as possible, convince places such as kotaku, reddit etc to pick up on this. Get people mad.

However, I heavily advise you "discontinue" your work and focus primarily on this first. Otherwise, they' might try to quell your little rebellion with a lawsuit. Which will take the wind out of your sails.

Lawsuits suck.

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Oct 21 2011, 4:51am Anchor

If you can though, say how often you've heard mention of the mod. Say how it's kept you interested in BSG when the series hasn't been on air if it has. Say how it made you buy the DVDs or the tech manual or something you wouldn't have bought otherwise.

I'm not saying that letter writing campaigns don't work, they do. But if your interaction with a mod has caused NBC to make more money, you really should mention it. It really will help.

Jok3r098
Jok3r098 “A computer is like air conditioning – it becomes useless when you open Windows” - Linus Torvals
Oct 21 2011, 9:18am Anchor

We could try setting up some sort of online pettition, just a sort of 1 click enter name and opinions here box and a big list of people doing the same.

Phrey
Phrey Composer
Oct 27 2011, 10:54am Anchor

If all the companies holding the rights of games like Stargate, Starwars, Battlestar, Halo, Eve, Star Trek etc, etc, etc ... start to ban mods, ModDB will have to close...In addition, it's really a strange attitude to ask to ban a mod under the pretext that it can be a concurrency if any, for its own game This means that if someone does not like their game, they prefer him to go enrich concurrency ? (rather than allowing free play in the similar mod/game ?). Strange sense of business...
 That story is crazy, and as a professionnal composer (composing music on my free time for Diaspora for over a year), I am surprised and very disappointed by this decision. (not the fault of "Moddb" of course, but they could have notified the team, just show some respect...)
 Hope that we reach a arrangment.I see so many people working hard for so many years on these projects, I can not bear to see them rejected out of hand without explanation. This is to show a lot of contempt.

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Composer for movies and video games

Oct 28 2011, 6:46am Anchor

I still don't believe that the mods were shut down in favour of BSG Online. More likely this is a trademark issue. They'd probably close down any project that was big enough whether it's a game, fan movie or even a fan made comic that was getting enough hits.

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