Creative licensing for massive multiplayer online games

Matt Haughey, November 14th, 2003

At a conference focused on video games and the law presented jointly by the law schools of NYU and Yale, the legal grey area of intellectual property and ownership of in-game items by participants has been examined by numerous presenters. The sale of credits and items between players in virtual worlds is fairly common, though standard property law doesn’t quite cover virtual property and companies running these games may also have rights to the contents inside their games.

Given those thorny issues, we were happy to hear the founder and CEO of Linden Lab, Philip Rosedale, announce that their multi-player online game Second Life has changed its Terms of Service (TOS) to transfer all copyright and intellectual property rights to users for any content they create within the game. Linden Lab also specifically allows for game content to be licensed by users under Creative Commons, so those items can be freely shared among players.

Here’s a good summary of the legal changes to Second Life’s TOS and our press release announcing this milestone event for gaming.

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Creative Commons week on Eyebeam forum continues

Mike Linksvayer, November 13th, 2003

Remember that this is Eyebeam week at Creative Commons. Eyebeam is the cutting-edge New York gallery hosting the Distributed Creativity email forum on intellectual property and art this month and next. Creative Commons is moderating the discussion this week. Join up if you haven’t already and spill your thoughts.

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Wired on Berklee Shares

Glenn Otis Brown, November 13th, 2003

A nice article on the Berklee Shares project we profiled earlier this week.

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Hacking the Xbox

Matt Haughey, November 12th, 2003

This week’s featured content is Andrew “bunnie” Huang’s controversial book “Hacking the Xbox: An Introduction to Reverse Engineering.” The book is available for order from his site, Amazon, and Barnes and Noble, and the text is Creative Commons licensed. The book has a colored history involving Microsoft, the Digital Millenium Copyright Act (DMCA), and potential lawsuits that forced him to self-publish it before finding a suitable publisher. The book site features sample sections from pages throughout the book.

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“Copyleft, Right & Center: Innovations in Law” online forum begins today

Neeru Paharia, November 12th, 2003

Today, Creative Commons begins to host a week-long online discussion entitled “Copyleft, Right & Center: Innovations in Law,” cosponsored by Eyebeam and the University of Maine. Read an article about Eyebeam recently published in the New York Times.

You can still sign up to participate in the discussion by joining the list. The archived discussion will be licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike license and will also be edited and published in a book. The inaugural message will be sent today from Eyebeam, to be followed-up with a message from Creative Commons. If you wish just to follow the discussion, you’ll be able to read the archives here.

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China and Taiwan iCommons discussions launched

Matt Haughey, November 12th, 2003

We’ve started work on porting our licenses to China and Taiwan thanks to volunteers at CNBlog.org and Institute of Information Science, Academia Sinica. The full press release contains all the details of the new projects.

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Wall Street Journal

Press Robot, November 11th, 2003

Can Copyright be Saved?” by Ethan Smith

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Financial Times

Press Robot, November 11th, 2003

It’s not all or nothing: A middle way for copyright holders is emerging” by Kate Bulkley

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Computerworld

Press Robot, November 11th, 2003

New music service sings a different tune” by James Lewin

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Wired News

Press Robot, November 11th, 2003

Music Label Cashes in by Sharing” by Chris Ulbrich

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