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Yes, People Do Steal Ideas

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GamesOnTheBrain
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http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/335195

Many members of this forum have said that in general, publishers do not steal ideas. Well, this seems to be an example of one who's in the process of stealing one now.

Really frustrating...

Katherine
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Joined: 07/24/2008
Yes, People Do Steal Ideas

Hi GamesOnTheBbrain

was this your game? if so don't let it make you become paranoid!

I once had an idea for a product, not a game, and sent my drawings to a "prototyping engineer" well next thing my idea was being manufactured under his patent and to add insult to injury, when I tried to challenge ownership I copped a letter of warning against slander.

This has handicapped a lot of my "ideas". On the one hand I don't have the skills to get them the best they can be and without help they just stay in the cupboard. For a long time I did no "problem solving" and developed a condition I call mental stagnation.

Now if I think the "idea" is worth pursuing (1 in 1000) I share with caution and acknowledge that a whole box of apples shouldn't be rejected because of one rotten one.

it will be interesting to see how many people buy the "pirated" game!

MatthewF
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GamesOnTheBrain

GamesOnTheBrain wrote:
http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/335195

Many members of this forum have said that in general, publishers do not steal ideas. Well, this seems to be an example of one who's in the process of stealing one now.

Really frustrating...


First, it appears that Rick was wrong and that no game is being stolen (I'm sure those posts are new since you posted the thread).

Second, if anything, this would be a publisher stealing a finished game. It's by no means a publisher stealing a game idea. Game ideas are cheap, it's finished games that might be worth something, as has been said here many times.

Even then, as was noted by many in the thread, it would have been suicide for the publisher... the hobby game market is just too small. The same rule wouldn't necessarily apply in the mass market.

Sebastian
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Yes, People Do Steal Ideas

I'm sure people do steal ideas. However, this BGG post is made by someone who is seemingly

a) Not the designer of the game in question, nor someone who has frequent contact with the designer.
b) Not involved with the company, nor someone who deals with the company on a frequent basis.
c) Has not seen the rules for the game that he is claiming is a copy.
d) Has decided it is a good idea to post an indignant complaint on a public forum before, say, contacting the people involved.

As such, I find it hard to feel they are likely to be particularly reliable about this issue.

Gizensha
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Joined: 07/26/2008
And as far as I can tell the

And as far as I can tell the claim is based on "name + theme + fell through" and while the designer is concerned, has accepted the claim of "Nope, not connected" as probably true.

The thread has pretty much acknowledged "Probably not the case, but there's a vague possibility, but it will be easy to tell when more details on the game become public."

apeloverage
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don't be so sure

I had the idea of designing a game and never putting it out, HUNDREDS of people have copied me.

jeffinberlin
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Joined: 07/29/2008
great guys and Phalanx

Although I still haven't received a contract from Phalanx, I've had personal meetings with them and corresponded with them for years over different game designs I submitted to them.

They always respond with great feedback, and they are very quick in playtesting and giving feedback.

Phalanx is a respected publisher in Germany, and there's no way they would risk that reputation by steeling a game design without due credit. Like all publishers in Germany, they don't have in-house designers and depend on outside submissions, and they do not want to jeopardize their great relationship with game designers (including me).

So do not be afraid to submit a prototype to them. I guarantee you'll hear back faster (either good or bad feedback) then with any other publisher, and the feedback you'll get will always be useful.
I even try to specifically design something for them because I want to work with them so much!

Dralius
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From reading the post at BGG,

From reading the post at BGG, especially the comments of the designer, I get the impression what was taken was not the game but the games name which was applied to another probably more viable game with the same theme.

It is up to the designer and possibly his lawyer to decide whether compensation is due. Game mechanics may not be covered by laws but the rules are covered under copy right which I imagine includes the title.

gameprinter
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What are the odds?

apeloverage wrote:
I had the idea of designing a game and never putting it out, HUNDREDS of people have copied me.

LOL! :)

It does sound like a bit of a tempest in a teacup. I'm sure it will be resolved equitably. It's an excellent example of the he said/she said type of arguments that can go into the business end of things though. In fact, it raises a very interesting point: if multiple games attempt to simulate the same thing, what are the odds that sooner or later some of them use similar mechanics? Especially if those multiple games are all of the same genre (Euro)?

I'll follow that thread for sure. Sooner or later someone will outright steal a game (because they're complete idiots) and I will have to amend my statement from "people don't steal games" to "people steal games once in a generation".

provfrog
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Joined: 07/31/2008
Could you please post contact

Could you please post contact info for Phalanx? I am interested
in seeing what their guidelines are and what kind of games they
are presently looking for. Thanks. David D.

MatthewF
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provfrog wrote:Could you

provfrog wrote:
Could you please post contact info for Phalanx? I am interested
in seeing what their guidelines are and what kind of games they
are presently looking for. Thanks. David D.

Google is your friend: http://www.phalanxgames.nl/contact.php?language=en

Brett Myers
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Dralius wrote:Game mechanics

Dralius wrote:
Game mechanics may not be covered by laws but the rules are covered under copy right which I imagine includes the title.

IIRC titles cannot be copyrighted, only Trademarked.

MatthewF
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Right-o.

Right-o.

Lilfisher
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MatthewF wrote:provfrog

MatthewF wrote:
provfrog wrote:
Could you please post contact info for Phalanx? I am interested
in seeing what their guidelines are and what kind of games they
are presently looking for. Thanks. David D.

Google is your friend: http://www.phalanxgames.nl/contact.php?language=en

THANK YOU!!!!

I have written them to inquire about being a distributor of games in the USA and Canada through our network for their games. Thanks again.

ALSO MATHEW

I loved your game Hand Truck Hustle and if you have ready for sale or to take to print I am willing to negotiate a deal to distribute these through our network in the USA. Contact me.

pelle
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Brett Myers wrote:Dralius

Brett Myers wrote:
Dralius wrote:
Game mechanics may not be covered by laws but the rules are covered under copy right which I imagine includes the title.

IIRC titles cannot be copyrighted, only Trademarked.

Yes, and the copyright on rules only cover the exact text used, not the mechanics or how to play (ie you can make a new game using the exact same mechanics as long as you write down the rules in a different way). Wouldn't be many new boardgames if the law was any stricter than it already is.

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