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Need Copyright Help

3 replies [Last post]
Joined: 08/13/2008

I keep hearing from different people that I need to pay to have my game copyrighted before shopping it around to publishers, and I keep hearing from others that I do not need to do it. Which answer is the right one, and why?

3dragonfly's picture
Joined: 12/19/2009
Copyright advice

From my experience, people in the hobby market say you do not need a copyright because you have the copyright upon creation. Stealing a game idea is just not worth the loss of reputation.

The people who tell me I need a copyright are either people who don't know how the industry works (like my parents or non-gamers I talk to about my game design hobby) or are part of the mass market game industry and are somehow profiting from the fear tactics of copyright infringement.

If you really want to know though, ask a copyright/patent lawyer. They should be able to tell you via a free consultation (and hope they are not part of the fear tactic group mentioned above). :-)


t0tem's picture
Joined: 04/21/2011
I'm very new to this whole

I'm very new to this whole thing so feel free to ignore me - infact I recommend you do, and talk to a lawyer - from what I have been able to tell from discussions on this forum and others however there doesn't really seem to be any need of obsessing over copyright registration because:

a. you are automatically granted copyright on your creation upon fixation.
b. chances of you making a game worth stealing are slim to none (no offense) and
c. the copyright protection doesn't help you much anyway if someone does decide to steal your game. although they can not copy it exactly, they could get around it by making minor modifications and changing the name.

Then again if design theft was common I guess the good and very knowledgable people here would know about it, so perhaps it's not an issue.

Dralius's picture
Joined: 07/26/2008
Lawer can't hurt

IP disputes are not uncommon in the game industry but the only instances of outright Game theft I know of are armatures making their own version of games like Settlers of Catan and selling them on EBay etc…

I have never submitted any of my games to the copyright office but I do include the © notation on all my work. I have been submitting games to publishers for about 7 years now and never had a problem.

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