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View Full Version : What is the status of a DLS asset with no license?



Paulsw2
April 20th, 2013, 10:27 AM
Most assets come with a license stating the terms of the copyright. However, there are some assets which appear to have no license - does this mean they are 'open' assets which can be reskinned and uploaded to the Download Station? Or is there an implicit copyright for all DLS items regardless of whether anything is explicitly stated in the config?

If the latter is true, I wonder if it's time to consider a subtle change to the N3V/DLS upload rules? At present when you upload an asset to the DLS, you give N3V implicit permission to redistribute it in their future payware. Should N3V add another condition that all registered Trainz users are permitted to reskin/revise assets uploaded to the DLS on condition that (a) such revisions are redistributed via the DLS and (b) unless the original creator explicitly prohibits this in their license?

That way, there would be an 'opt out' system for DLS assets - creators would have to expressly prohibit revision of their assets - rather than the current 'opt in' where permission has to be sought even if the creator has not set down any conditions.

The benefit of this approach is that assets with no or only a very minimal license, for which the creator subsequently leaves the community, would be available for revision rather than left orphaned on the Download Station.

I am currently chasing after several creators - one of whom appears to have no license on his asset - to obtain permissions for revised assets for my Lavenham route. It's got me tearing my hair out! :'(

Paul

BLACKWATCH
April 20th, 2013, 11:05 AM
By default, the creator still holds 'copyright' even when no licence statement is made. (but N3v may decide otherwise if it's on their dls) ;)

shaneturner12
April 20th, 2013, 11:10 AM
Even if N3V decide otherwise, the copyright still rests with the original creator as they are the one who made the creation and as such it is their intellectual property. It would involve a lot of paper form filling in order for N3V to be able to claim copyright on the assets.

Shane

itareus
April 20th, 2013, 11:43 AM
...However, there are some assets which appear to have no license - does this mean they are 'open' assets which can be reskinned and uploaded to the Download Station? Or is there an implicit copyright for all DLS items regardless of whether anything is explicitly stated in the config?...

The view always taken is that the author of the asset retains the copyright, but by uploading to the DLS they grant N3V permission to use that asset in payware by agreeing to the terms of the DLS.


... Should N3V add another condition that all registered Trainz users are permitted to reskin/revise assets uploaded to the DLS on condition that (a) such revisions are redistributed via the DLS and (b) unless the original creator explicitly prohibits this in their license?...

If N3V were to change to DLS conditions for uploading to this effect then by uploading to the DLS an author would, by default, grant registered Trainz users such permission because he has agreed to N3Vs conditions.

On the face of it Paul's idea is a good one but I can see this opening a can of worms and, since N3V have no good commercial reason to make such a change, I can't see it happening any time soon.

The above is just my opinion and not based on any in depth knowledge of international copyright laws !

johnwhelan
April 20th, 2013, 02:01 PM
It would open up N3V to DMCA requests to remove content from the DLS. Currently a number of my assets in fact could be subject to a DMCA request since the texture is not licensed correctly for the DLS.

Cheerio John

ray_whiley
April 20th, 2013, 02:10 PM
Just to add my pennyworth -copyright is automatic, at least in the UK and in most other countries by international agreement. It does not have to be stated or claimed and it exists for a certain number of years after the death of the creator. An example I was once given was this: I draw a scribbled picture of a tree, like a young child might draw. That is my artistic creation and I own the copyright which passes to my heirs and successors for the legally stated number of years. I may if I wish give away the copyright, sell it, or license others to republish the "work of art". Others however may not assume that they have the right to use it (except by way of 'fair dealing' in the case of written work, and this is also clearly defined).

In short, I suport the views given above.

Ray

Dermmy
April 20th, 2013, 05:20 PM
The contents of the license container are irrelevant when uploaded to the DLS, so it makes no difference whether a DLS asset contains a license statement or not. Part of the small print when you upload makes the Auran/N3V EULA the only effective 'license' and that EULA over-rides any statement in an asset. So there is no such thing as a DLS asset without a license - they are all covered by the over-riding EULA.

The status of a config 'license' in a DLS asset is at best a plea to the end user to exercise some moral constraint in the use of the asset - for example a license a statement that says "May not be used in payware routes without the express written consent of the original creator" is totally over-ridden by the EULA which says that any DLS asset can be used in Payware. Whether RouteCreatorX uses the asset in a payware route or not is an ethical/moral call, not a 'legal' one.

Don't confuse this with 'copyright' which always vests with the creator.

Assets from 3rd Party Sites are different - the license statement there possibly does carry some 'legal' weight, but as one warm hearted Trainzer or another is sure to point out shortly, for all practical purposes they can't sue you anyway......

The whole concept of a 'license' in Trainz is misleading. The contents are in truth little more than a request by one Trainzer to be treated fairly and with respect by the rest of the community. It used to work well...

If there is a change in DLS policy I would think it most likely that 'license' became an invalid tag in DLS content. At least that would reflect the reality of the situation...

Paulsw2
April 21st, 2013, 06:26 PM
Thanks for the feedback. I'll keep chasing for the permissions then! :hehe:

Paul

Retro00064
April 21st, 2013, 06:51 PM
The contents of the license container are irrelevant when uploaded to the DLS, so it makes no difference whether a DLS asset contains a license statement or not. Part of the small print when you upload makes the Auran/N3V EULA the only effective 'license' and that EULA over-rides any statement in an asset. So there is no such thing as a DLS asset without a license - they are all covered by the over-riding EULA.

The status of a config 'license' in a DLS asset is at best a plea to the end user to exercise some moral constraint in the use of the asset - for example a license a statement that says "May not be used in payware routes without the express written consent of the original creator" is totally over-ridden by the EULA which says that any DLS asset can be used in Payware. [...]

Where does it say this?

The DLS license agreement grants N3V a license to sell your content, such as by including it as built-in content in new Trainz versions. I do not see where it says that other Trainz users are granted a similar license.

Also, here's clause 2.2 of the license:


No conveyance

The grant of the license in clause 2.1 ("Grant of license") is not and cannot be deemed to be a sale, transfer or any other conveyance of your intellectual property rights held in the New Works.

Dermmy
April 21st, 2013, 07:13 PM
These threads always go the same way...

Your first quote totally misrepresents my statement. No-where did I infer that a third party can 'sell' a DLS asset. What I did state clearly was that a third party route builder can include a DLS asset in a PayWare route irrespective of the wishes of the creator of the asset, and irrespective of any statement to the contrary in the asset config. T'was ever thus and ever will be and there are at last count a zillion threads to that effect. There is nothing new in my comment. My intent was simply to illustrate the irrelevance of a 'License' statement ina DLS asset by using an example with which pretty much everyone is familiar.

Your second quote refers to where i specifically said copyright vests with the creator.

NSWGR_46Class
April 21st, 2013, 07:19 PM
It will be interesting to see what happen when N3V opens up content to be repaired under the DLS update coming soon.

Did see a config the other day were the author said their item must no be changed from its current form in any future DLS clean up

ZecMurphy
April 21st, 2013, 08:00 PM
Good Morning All
As has been covered many times before...

If the author has not entered anything into the license tag, then the asset should be considered as being covered by 'basic' copyright (they've not stated any extra permissions/etc). Essentially, this means that you cannot redistribute the content in any way without receiving written permission from the author, including reskins, etc.

The license tag is intended to allow the creator to both outline their license restrictions, and provide permission in advance for specific uses/activities (e.g. the licenses in my own content state that you cannot redistribute a reskin without contacting me, but that you can show screenshots of a reskin).

In regards to payware, as we've stated it is fine to reference content on the DLS. However, a good use of the license tag is to remind people that they cannot redistribute the content in payware without permission (again, the licenses in my own content state that you can reference it, but not redistribute - and have done so for quite some time!).

Please note, the DLS EULA does not override the license except where the non exclusive commercial license to N3V is concerned. As well as the referencing of the content in payware. As well as the DLS clean up...

On the DLS clean up. Any faulty asset on the DLS will be repaired. If the author does not wish to repair the content, then it will be repaired by the community. We give each author 8 weeks to repair their items, after which time the item becomes available for the community to repair. We will not exclude assets from the DLS clean, irrespective of the license.

Regards

Dermmy
April 21st, 2013, 08:25 PM
Appologies to Zec and anyone who saw this before I editted it.

Since a route only REFERENCES content, Zec's 4th paragraph (which confused me on the first read!), confirms that DLS content is fine in a payware route, irrespective of the wishes of the asset creator. If that's not the EULA over-riding possible constarints within a license I'm not sure how else to express it...

ZecMurphy
April 21st, 2013, 08:45 PM
Good Morning Dermmy
I pointed out the three cases where we've stated that the license in a config.txt file does not apply. Specifically, N3V using the content in new releases, referencing the content in payware (without redistribution), and the DLS clean up. Note that in the cases of referencing in payware, this is overridden by the content system in Trainz in effect, as preventing content from being referenced does in turn break the content system in Trainz. Note that these are the three cases where we have explicitly stated that the license tag does not apply.

My points regarding using the license to outline other restrictions or permissions is still accurate. Essentially the license tag is useful in outlining to the end-user how the content may be used, including the above information.



2012 Zec Murphy.
You may not modify this creation in any way without the written permission of the author listed above. You may create reskins for your own personal use, including screenshots, however the reskin(s) may not be released without written permission from the author. You may only upload this item to the Auran 'Download Station', but only once written permission has been given from the author. You may not redistribute this item without written permission from the author listed above.
This creation may not be released as part of any payware package, however it may be 'linked' to as a dependency in the items kuid-table.
Now that all that is over, I hope you enjoy this creation.

That's the license from my own freeware content. It was actually written about 4-5 years ago by another Australian creator, who allowed me to use it in my own content. It essentially states that the content is covered by copyright, and no redistribution is allowed without permission. It also states that it cannot be released as part of a payware package, but can be linked in the kuid-table (I personally consider this to include route and session usage, even though the kuid number is referenced within the 'route' and 'session' files).

Regards