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Exact Copy Or Similar MOC
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Is an exact copy of another member's MOC the same as a similar copy of a MOC? If you are not trying to take credit for a MOC as being your original work and you create a similar but not exact recreation of a MOC, what is the difference? Especially if you did not know a similar MOC was posted on MOCpages. ADDED: Once again, if anyone cares to know, I found an LDD for a teardrop camper on LEGO.com, made modifications to it and as I do with most of the items I build and post on MOCpages, is post them on eBay for those who want to purchase them, instead of finding instructions, ordering parts from multiple sellers, and then building. It is because of getting comments to my post on MOCpages that this question was being asked. I have modified the listing and have removed the "teardrop camper" that is in question.
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| September 8, 2014, 3:00 am
Theft is theft.

"Similar but not exact copy" and "no awareness of its existence" are contradictory, by the way.

You got caught, boo hoo, man up, stop selling people's work and maybe think for a minute that just perhaps, uploading something to a site called "My Own Creation-pages" would just kind of imply that it's YOUR creation and not, say, something you stole and sold on Ebay.

And take an English course while you're at it.

It's interesting to see that all it takes to make money selling Lego online is a complete and total lack of scruples.
Permalink
| September 8, 2014, 3:12 am
Quoting Areetsa C
Theft is theft.

"Similar but not exact copy" and "no awareness of its existence" are contradictory, by the way.

You got caught, boo hoo, man up, stop selling people's work and maybe think for a minute that just perhaps, uploading something to a site called "My Own Creation-pages" would just kind of imply that it's YOUR creation and not, say, something you stole and sold on Ebay.

And take an English course while you're at it.

It's interesting to see that all it takes to make money selling Lego online is a complete and total lack of scruples.



Hello Areetsa C, sorry you feel that way. I appreciate your taking time to comment on my question. I did think that posting on MOCpages was for the purpose of sharing ideas, but anyway. I found an LDD file online for a teardrop camper and I made modifications to that design. The LDD titled teardrop camper was posted on LEGO.com. Username: TheScooterGuy. Once again, I used that LDD and made modifications to it and posted in on MOCpages:


http://ldd.lego.com/en-us/gallery/archive





Permalink
| September 8, 2014, 5:06 am
"Sharing" is one thing.
"Stealing and selling on Ebay" something else entirely.

I especially like the way you refuse to stop selling them after being asked directly.
Permalink
| September 8, 2014, 5:12 am
Quoting Areetsa C
"Sharing" is one thing.
"Stealing and selling on Ebay" something else entirely.

I especially like the way you refuse to stop selling them after being asked directly.


Thank you for commenting on my question. Oh, I have looked at some of your postings on MOCpages, you are a very skilled builder and have a lot of imagination. Great works of Lego creationism. In reference to your comment about my selling on eBay: I am selling on eBay an item that I built of an SUV and a teardrop camper. The LDD for that teardrop camper was downloaded from LEGO.com and I made modifications to that model.
Permalink
| September 8, 2014, 5:32 am
 Group admin 
Legally speaking, there are grey areas when it comes to copyright infringements, as well as loopholes in some specific areas. But...

In general you would be infringing on someone else's creative property if the work is "substantially similar" and there's proof you had access to the original property.

In this case, you've admitted having access, and so now it's a matter of how much you've changed the design. A 20% change is an approximation for legal purposes as I understand it - but there's constant argument as to what constitutes 20%.

The bottom line though, as Areetsa alluded to, is that your conscience should be your guide. If you're tip-toeing around that 20% mark, then you probably either need to make more changes, or credit the original work and use your version for fun or education only - not for profit.


Permalink
| September 8, 2014, 6:04 am
Quoting Mark Kelso
Legally speaking, there are grey areas when it comes to copyright infringements, as well as loopholes in some specific areas. But...

In general you would be infringing on someone else's creative property if the work is "substantially similar" and there's proof you had access to the original property.

In this case, you've admitted having access, and so now it's a matter of how much you've changed the design. A 20% change is an approximation for legal purposes as I understand it - but there's constant argument as to what constitutes 20%.

The bottom line though, as Areetsa alluded to, is that your conscience should be your guide. If you're tip-toeing around that 20% mark, then you probably either need to make more changes, or credit the original work and use your version for fun or education only - not for profit.

Hey Mark, thanks for taking time to comment. To clarify, I downloaded an LDD from LEGO.com of a "teardrop camper" uploaded by "TheScooterGuy", modified it, and built it. I have added to my MOCpages posts to reflect this. Michael Jasper posted a real brick version of that teardrop camper in his posting of: http://www.mocpages.com/moc.php/344050

Permalink
| September 8, 2014, 8:45 am
Quoting Oran Cruzen
Hey Mark, thanks for taking time to comment. To clarify, I downloaded an LDD from LEGO.com of a "teardrop camper" uploaded by "TheScooterGuy", modified it, and built it. I have added to my MOCpages posts to reflect this. Michael Jasper posted a real brick version of that teardrop camper in his posting of: http://www.mocpages.com/moc.php/344050

There's nothing wrong with reverse-engineering someone else's LEGO models. It's when you don't give credit that it becomes a problem. As long as you stated that it wasn't your original design, and gave credit where credit was due, that's fine. But that's just to post something. To build what is essentially someone else's model (even with a few modifications) and then SELL it is a problem. If you sell a model from this person's design on eBay without their explicit consent, that's what counts as plagiarism and/or copyright infringement. To sell someone else's design, you would need their permission. Like Mr. Kelso said, let your conscience be your guide.
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| September 8, 2014, 9:05 am
Quoting Kevin Moyer
...As long as you stated that it wasn't your original design, and gave credit where credit was due, that's fine...

This part right here is where the problem lies.
Permalink
| September 8, 2014, 9:12 am
Just clicked through to all the links, the builder's original, your version here, and the one on eBay. You do acknowledge him on MOCpages, which is all fine and good, but not a single mention on eBay. I'd say this, plus the builder asking you to stop selling the model, counts for something. Like I said, reverse-engineering is totally fine. I've done it myself once or twice. It's a good way to learn some new techniques and appreciate the creativity of other builders. Posting a copied MOC like this is OK, as long as you give very specific credit. But selling it (at a high price, no less): using someone else's design, for PROFIT (!), ESPECIALLY after the original builder explicitly ASKED you to not sell it, is just. Not. Cool.
Permalink
| September 8, 2014, 9:15 am
Quoting Kevin Moyer

Just a few notes:
I only know about this because Jasper's one of my Favorite Builders. Saw him comment, wondered, clicked.

Originally there was no mention at all that the ute and trailer weren't his.
After Jasper came along to say "stop selling my stuff, dude" the guy added a note saying "it isn't actually MY build" and left a gibberish paragraph that used a great many words to avoid actually saying "NO." without having to say anything remotely similar to "sorry, I'll stop".
Permalink
| September 8, 2014, 9:25 am
 Group moderator 
There seems here to be an obvious "misunderstanding" about the term "sharing". Once again we see someone using places like MOCpages as an open source resource for taking ideas to use as their own. That is immoral at worst and disrespectful at best.

There are lots of builders who build similar things in the same way, coincidences do happen. But it is more normal you look round and take "inspiration" from other designs. In those cases it is better to give a credit than risk being labelled a thief or plagiarist (IMHO).
Permalink
| September 8, 2014, 9:53 am
My two cents:

First at Oran, i think you should stop selling the teardrop camper on Ebay. So this problem would be solved pretty fast. I think it's the best way. Mr Jasper gave no permission and it has no sense discussing it again and again. That's not worth it, believe me.

Well, now to Areetsa.

"You got caught, boo hoo, man up, stop selling people's work and maybe think for a minute that just perhaps, uploading something to a site called "My Own Creation-pages" would just kind of imply that it's YOUR creation and not, say, something you stole and sold on Ebay.

And take an English course while you're at it."

<-- After i read your comment i was really upset. What's that? Cannot understand why youre acting like a immature. And this is immature and disrespectful in my eyes. I know you as a friendly and helpful guy but i think that was not okay and you should think about how to deal nice and fair with others.

Friendly greetings, Sven
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| September 8, 2014, 10:32 am
Oran is a great friend and very nice guy and he never forgot giving credit when it was due. (IMHO)

In the case of this "teardrop camper" file some people copied, used and published it again on other sites. So someone used the original, and another used this "new edited" version and then another and another user used it again. Sometimes it's not easy to find out who made the original. I hope you understand what i wanna say. So i think it was really a mistake. And now after it's deleted from the bay everything should fine...
Permalink
| September 8, 2014, 11:41 am
Quoting andros tempest
There seems here to be an obvious "misunderstanding" about the term "sharing". Once again we see someone using places like MOCpages as an open source resource for taking ideas to use as their own. That is immoral at worst and disrespectful at best.

There are lots of builders who build similar things in the same way, coincidences do happen. But it is more normal you look round and take "inspiration" from other designs. In those cases it is better to give a credit than risk being labelled a thief or plagiarist (IMHO).


Hello andros tempest: If I am wrong then I am sorry but you seem to be saying that I used "MOCpages as an open source for taking ideas to use as their own". I have not done that, I used an LDD posted on LEGO.com and from what I understand that it is considered Public Domain.
Permalink
| September 8, 2014, 1:15 pm
Thanks Sven!
Permalink
| September 8, 2014, 1:28 pm
Quoting Oran Cruzen
Thanks Sven!

No problem my friend. :)
Permalink
| September 8, 2014, 2:16 pm
 Group moderator 
Quoting Oran Cruzen

Hello andros tempest: If I am wrong then I am sorry but you seem to be saying that I used "MOCpages as an open source for taking ideas to use as their own". I have not done that, I used an LDD posted on LEGO.com and from what I understand that it is considered Public Domain.


I said places "like" mocpages, I include in that any image sharing site including flickr, lego.com and brickshelf.

The part I hoped you would take from my comment was the last bit "rather than be labelled a thief or plagiarist give credit". It's about showing respect to other members of the community. If you have "borrowed" an idea it is only common decency to thank that person. Are you a decent person? If so I see no issue. Give the credit.

As for the public domain argument, I take issue with the notion that just because something can be obtained for free that gives you the right to do whatever you like with it. My point was and remains, the originator would like you to acknowledge you are using their work, at least have the common curtesy to acknowledge that and credit them.

It's about showing respect. Only a sociopath or someone who is incredibly immature would argue, "why should I" when presented with proof the design is not their own.
Permalink
| September 9, 2014, 2:28 am
 Group admin 
If I'm understanding the situation correctly, I might suggest contacting Jasper to see if he'd be willing to accept a one time fee or a percentage from the sale of your work on ebay.

As an artist, I'll sometimes use other photographers images as reference for my own paintings. If I'm going to copy their work (which is rare, but does happen every now and then), I'll always ask their permission to use the image. There have been a few times when they've said no, but would accept a percentage from the sale of my painting as compensation for the use of their images. Without looking too deeply into this issue, I'd be inclined to say the same method could (and perhaps should) be applied here.


Permalink
| September 9, 2014, 7:41 am
Quoting Mark Kelso
If I'm understanding the situation correctly, I might suggest contacting Jasper to see if he'd be willing to accept a one time fee or a percentage from the sale of your work on ebay.

As an artist, I'll sometimes use other photographers images as reference for my own paintings. If I'm going to copy their work (which is rare, but does happen every now and then), I'll always ask their permission to use the image. There have been a few times when they've said no, but would accept a percentage from the sale of my painting as compensation for the use of their images. Without looking too deeply into this issue, I'd be inclined to say the same method could (and perhaps should) be applied here.


Hello Mark Kelso, thank you for taking time to reply. I am sorry if you know this but just in case I would like to add this information. I have removed the "teardrop camper" from my listing on eBay and have commented to Michael Jasper that I have done that and he has responded "Edit: Thanks. And no, the LDD file was made and uploaded by Ryan Smith." That LDD file, posted on LEGO.com titled "teardrop camper" was posted by username "TheScooterGuy" I modified that LDD and used it to create the first post I did on MOCpages.

This one on 29 Apr 2014:
http://mocpages.com/moc.php/387179

This one on 8 May 2014: http://mocpages.com/moc.php/387852

This one on 10 Jul 2014:
http://mocpages.com/moc.php/392265

Then finally this one on 7 Sep 2014:
http://mocpages.com/moc.php/396472

Doing a search on MOCpages for a "teardrop camper" only comes up with 6 posts (4 of which are mine):
http://mocpages.com/search_RESULTS.php?query=teardrop+camper&total=6&page=1&sort=best_match&filter=moc&personid=

When a search is made for "teardrop" 34 show up. On the second page is this post:
http://mocpages.com/moc.php/344050

Which is Michael's post that shows the teardrop but not in the main picture.

I looked over the main pictures, I am so humbly sorry that I did not spend more time looking at each post and all the pictures to find Michael's teardrop. He would have been given credit and I would have done all that you have posted here earlier.

I will not claim credit for a MOC or MOC or for anything if I know it not my original work, if that is the correct term, or whatever.

If I have, not on purpose, I am sorry and will to the best of my ability correct it.

I would ask that in your position as a group administrator in this group take some time to read over all of the comments in this conversation and on my latest post in reference to the following:

"Use appropriate language and do not be mean, rude, or insulting."

"Inappropriate comments will be deleted before anyone sees them, and your account may be deleted."

Permalink
| September 9, 2014, 10:45 am
 Group moderator 
Quoting Mark Kelso
If I'm understanding the situation correctly, I might suggest contacting Jasper to see if he'd be willing to accept a one time fee or a percentage from the sale of your work on ebay.

As an artist, I'll sometimes use other photographers images as reference for my own paintings. If I'm going to copy their work (which is rare, but does happen every now and then), I'll always ask their permission to use the image. There have been a few times when they've said no, but would accept a percentage from the sale of my painting as compensation for the use of their images. Without looking too deeply into this issue, I'd be inclined to say the same method could (and perhaps should) be applied here.



Curious as to how LEGO themselves view the use of downloads from their website for commercial gain I've emailed them details of this discussion. I'll post anything useful they come back with. I've also checked ebay and the rule there seems to be that the originator of the material needs to challenge fair use before it is treated as theft, fraud or copyright infringement. However I am aware they have been trying to tighten up rules regarding the sale of "knock off" items, such as reproduction toys and prints of original works. I'm not a lawyer so I can't say whether this would fall into that category, but if anyone feels their work is being sold illegally I'd suggest contacting ebay directly.

Permalink
| September 9, 2014, 10:46 am
Quoting andros tempest

Curious as to how LEGO themselves view the use of downloads from their website for commercial gain I've emailed them details of this discussion. I'll post anything useful they come back with. I've also checked ebay and the rule there seems to be that the originator of the material needs to challenge fair use before it is treated as theft, fraud or copyright infringement. However I am aware they have been trying to tighten up rules regarding the sale of "knock off" items, such as reproduction toys and prints of original works. I'm not a lawyer so I can't say whether this would fall into that category, but if anyone feels their work is being sold illegally I'd suggest contacting ebay directly.

Hello andros tempest, you have some really imaginative creations. My son graduated with a degree in English, he sure did not get his ability from me, I am not known for the best ability to word a sentence or whatever, anyway. If you have some time I would appreciate it if you would read my last reply to Mark. I would hope that would explain some of the background about the teardrop camper which is one of the main subjects to this conversation.
Permalink
| September 9, 2014, 11:44 am
 Group moderator 
Quoting Oran Cruzen
Hello andros tempest, you have some really imaginative creations. My son graduated with a degree in English, he sure did not get his ability from me, I am not know for the best ability to word a sentence or whatever, anyway. If you have some time I would appreciate it if you would read my last reply to Mark. I would hope that would explain some of the background about the teardrop camper which is one of the main subjects to this conversation.

Sorry, as an English teacher I should appreciate the difficulties in communication more. My apologies for the crossed communication.

Yes as far as I can see this conversation is concluded. The only issue that affected MOCpages was one of a credit and that is no longer a problem.

Thanks for your patience.
Permalink
| September 9, 2014, 1:19 pm
Quoting andros tempest
Sorry, as an English teacher I should appreciate the difficulties in communication more. My apologies for the crossed communication.

Yes as far as I can see this conversation is concluded. The only issue that affected MOCpages was one of a credit and that is no longer a problem.

Thanks for your patience.


Thank you for your patience. Something else that has come up in this conversation and I would like to ask for your help. I did update my home page and I do not know how to correctly word it. It also has to do with selling on eBay, would this type of wording help or is it even necessary, but it has been commented on here and I thought I may need to state it:

I will not make any claim about a MOC or MOD being my original creation if it is not. If you feel that I have used one that is yours, please contact me and let's discuss what we can do about it. I try to always credit where credit is due but if I make a mistake, please be patient with me.

They are made for resale on eBay*. DISCLAIMER: This is not for profit. Monies received for the sale are used to pay listing/usage fees, shipping and handling and the rest is used to purchase more parts. Projects, builds, parts, and monies are donated and/or given away after parts are purchased. I personally do not receive profit from these sales.


Permalink
| September 9, 2014, 1:32 pm
Quoting Kevin Moyer
Just clicked through to all the links, the builder's original, your version here, and the one on eBay. You do acknowledge him on MOCpages, which is all fine and good, but not a single mention on eBay. I'd say this, plus the builder asking you to stop selling the model, counts for something. Like I said, reverse-engineering is totally fine. I've done it myself once or twice. It's a good way to learn some new techniques and appreciate the creativity of other builders. Posting a copied MOC like this is OK, as long as you give very specific credit. But selling it (at a high price, no less): using someone else's design, for PROFIT (!), ESPECIALLY after the original builder explicitly ASKED you to not sell it, is just. Not. Cool.

Hello Kevin Moyer, if you will please give me some of your time and continue to read all of the replies and additional comments, especially mine to Mark Kelso and to andros tempest I would hope that most, if not all, of what you have written here could or would be cleared up and settled. Your "profit" issue was discussed. Your "original builder" was discussed. Also, after considering all of this, in reference specifically to the "high" selling price on eBay, the "teardrop camper" is about $11.00 added to the price that I have been selling an SUV. $11.00 was actually less than the cost of buying the parts to make it, from four different sellers and the shipping costs involved.

Permalink
| September 9, 2014, 1:56 pm
Quoting Mark Kelso
If I'm understanding the situation correctly, I might suggest contacting Jasper to see if he'd be willing to accept a one time fee or a percentage from the sale of your work on ebay.

As an artist, I'll sometimes use other photographers images as reference for my own paintings. If I'm going to copy their work (which is rare, but does happen every now and then), I'll always ask their permission to use the image. There have been a few times when they've said no, but would accept a percentage from the sale of my painting as compensation for the use of their images. Without looking too deeply into this issue, I'd be inclined to say the same method could (and perhaps should) be applied here.



Hello Mark,
Thanks again for taking time to reply, I appreciate it a lot. I posted a reply earlier to you and it sort of had sentences cut off I think because of my cutting and pasting, anyway, if you have time I would humbly ask that you would comment on what I said, if not here then by an email. I did not see a reply so I was thinking that it might of just got lost in the other comments. Once again thanks.

Permalink
| September 11, 2014, 12:47 pm
Hi Oran, I've added you to my favourites a long time ago and since then you've been one of my "MOCpages buddies" for me. But in this case I think you have made a mistake.

I don't think you wanted to harm anybody or "steal" something, but the fact is that the differences between your last version of the teardrop camper and Michael's first version are minimal.

I'm an engineer and I have a few patents myself. I've also had some patents which have been rejected because of a "lack of inventive step".

This would most probably be the answer of a patent lawyer if you presented him a photo of Michael's teardrop camper and your modified version.

If you ask me, selling the thing on Ebay without a "license" is if not illegal, at least illegitimate.
Permalink
| September 17, 2014, 11:42 am
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