Should there be a free star trek.

Discussion in 'Fan Productions' started by Rigelkent, Feb 4, 2021.

  1. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Yeah, you seemed to be safe as long as you a)made it clear you were a not an official release and b) didn't make money off of it.
     
  2. David cgc

    David cgc Admiral Premium Member

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    I have a vague memory of stories of Paramount being very litigious about early fan-websites in the '90s and there being a chilling effect, but that was all done and being forgotten by the time I got on-line. A story to scare young fans, "Don't post Star Trek fan fic or fan art on Geocities, or mean old Paramount will come and sue you!"
     
  3. Therin of Andor

    Therin of Andor Admiral Admiral

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    I think this was during the rise of Viacom, when they were setting up the first official "Star Trek" online archives. The people who ran them were actually licensees, so there was a need to have fan competitors quashed.

    Again, they did not pursue everyone. My Geocities site had both fan art and screen grabs (with disclaimers) and I received thank you messages from Pocket Books authors and Art Asylum sculptors, thanking me for useful research materials. At the same time, some Trek web pages were ordered to strip out copyright materials or were posting copies of their C&D letters.
     
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  4. Matthew Raymond

    Matthew Raymond Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Let's just say that I wouldn't be surprised if you're right.
    The point isn't that they shouldn't be concerned with that so much as they shouldn't SOLELY be concerned with that.
    @Therin of Andor just gave a pretty good example. CBS chose to use the vibrance of their fan community as a marketing asset. Another example would be Guideline #4. CBS wouldn't have spent the time and money drafting such a guideline if they didn't feel that fan films would have an impact on licensed sales. Ergo, by CBS's own assessment, there's more to managing their franchise than knee-jerk copyright protectionism. At some level, they understand this, but nobody's willing to be the industry's first penguin on the matter.
    Why would a business collect information on people who are, by definition, their most enthusiastic customers?!?
     
  5. fireproof78

    fireproof78 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    When it comes to fan films I think that has been demonstrated to be exactly what they need to be concerned about.
    Again, there is no incentive in the fan film world to do this. They feel that fan films are impacting license sales and attempting to compete with them on some level. Thus becoming more strict with the guidelines was demonstrated to be needed. So, again, there is no incentive for them to behave less than protectionist when in the past that has been trampled upon.
    In regards to fan films the "enthusiastic customers" have demonstrated a completely entitled point of view in terms of what they are able to do, how far they are pushing it, and asserting possession over CBS' product. Maybe after the guidelines have gone on for a couple of years and people stop trying to push Axanar as the "true Trek" a more good faith dialog can ensue. Maybe. But the poor actions of a few will color this response. That is the nature of business, at least in my experience.
     
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  6. Noname Given

    Noname Given Admiral Admiral

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    No. I can guarantee Paramount at the time had an agreement with Gene Roddenberry (or he transferred it to his Estate). They aren't going to risk the perpetual 'cash cow'. Star Trek was doing very well in 1991 and in sure all parties involved ensured it WOULDN'T hit the pubic domain 70 years after his death in 2061. Per this:
    https://fairuse.stanford.edu/overview/faqs/copyright-ownership/#5
    It's probably WHY Eugene Roddenberry is listed (and paid) as a consulting producer on all the new Star Trek series. GR probably passed the Star Trek copyrights he holds to him.

    ------------

    Fans of Flash Gordon said that the 1979 animated film was probably the best 'modern' adaption of the pulp material to that time. I know NBC actually broadcast the full film once; but I can't recall if it was before or after the Saturday morning TV series that used footage from it.
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2021
  7. Maurice

    Maurice Fact Trekker Premium Member

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  8. Serveaux

    Serveaux Boomer American Premium Member

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    Go die on that hill.
    Guess what? As Maurice pointed out, space shows are free, too.

    That's the equivalence you're drawing. A particular vampire property, like Dracula or Buffy or True Blood is protected by copyright for a certain legal period (Dracula's copyright has expired). Star Trek is equivalent to Buffy. Neither are free, nor should they be.

    Every important element of Trek other than specific characters, trademarks, etc existed for decades (at least) before Trek and still exists in the public domain. Specifics of the Trek property, like Spock for example, are owned by CBS just as Buffy Summers is owned by...whomever. Disney, now?

    "Any reasonable copyright law" is nothing but a hypothetical premise. What strikes some person as reasonable does not make it so in the eyes of others - notably, those whose property someone is attempting to appropriate.
     
  9. drt

    drt Commodore Commodore

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    I thought one of Axanar's arguments was that the ownership of Star Trek was messy, so CBS/Paramount showed in trial documents that Roddenberry assigned everything over and they owned Star Trek outright.

    I'd bet that Eugene Roddenberry was only involved to add his last name to the project and provide some additional legitimacy - same reason they hired Nick Meyer early on, so fans wouldn't unnecessarily panic early.
     
  10. Therin of Andor

    Therin of Andor Admiral Admiral

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    There was one "messy" aspect in regards to international screenings of Season Three of TOS. Apparently, the changeover of Desilu to Paramount had somehow failed to mention Season Three, a loophole that was tested here in Australia, when a film entrepreneur was doing monthly "Star Trek Marathon" public screenings in theatrettes in Sydney and Melbourne (1976-2000), using 16mm reels bought from a collector in South Africa. (South Africa didn't get TV until the mid 70s.)

    Our Nine Network had the option for TV screening rights to TOS but had chosen to run the series only once in the 60s, and then about eight episodes when colour TV came to Australia in March 1975. Despite not airing the series again, the network did try to prevent Bob from doing his marathons. There was a ruling that he could continue, but only screening Season Three. (Of course, he tended to slip in episodes from the previous seasons once the heat died down.)
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2021
  11. Noname Given

    Noname Given Admiral Admiral

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    Only Star Trek (TOS) Season 3? NO WONDER "Lost In Space" is more popular in Australia... ;)
     
  12. Therin of Andor

    Therin of Andor Admiral Admiral

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    There is a reason: Of the original 79 TOS episodes, only 40 were rated "G" by the Australian Censorship Board. The rest could only be shown after children's viewing hours. So the network just sat on the series and rarely repeated it in greater Sydney. So the first run in the 60s was in prime time, about a year after it started in USA, but TOS reruns could not be stripped Mon-Fri in the afternoons or early evenings. All of "Lost in Space" was acceptable in afternoon rerun, and regularly alternated with "Hogan's Heroes", "Gilligan's Island", etc..

    Even years later, when the Seven Network bought the rights to TOS, they did not pay to have the series reclassified.
     
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  13. Tuskin38

    Tuskin38 Admiral Admiral

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    Yeah they def knew.

    They knew that Doug Drexler was working on New Voyages, he told a story in a TrekYards interview once. One day he was called into the office about working on the series, they asked him if anything used in the CG shots on that series was Paramount/CBS property, and he told them none of it was, so they sent him along his way, that was the only potential issue they had. Doug described them as just 'looking the other way' when it came to NV. It was probably the same with Continues.

    The tactical scope on USS Defiant in ENT Season 4 came from the New Voyages set. They had a tactical scope already, (I think from TNG 'Relics'), but it couldn't move, so they asked the NV guys if they could borrow theirs since it could actually move.

    Plus the New Voyages sets are now an official CBS licensed attraction.
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2021
  14. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Yeah, the fact that they actually got a license for the NV set tours is a pretty clear indication that CBS was OK with them.
    Which just shows that if Alec had shut, stopped crowdfunding, and made Axanar the lawsuit never would have happened.
     
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  15. Matthew Raymond

    Matthew Raymond Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    That would only be the case if such fan films actually serve to PROMOTE the competition, which would imply that the fan films could similarly promote licensed products as well. Note that if this were simply a matter of lost sales directly to fan films, they wouldn't have explicitly exempted DIY costumes and props.
    You just demonstrated exactly why hard evidence is necessary. You're basing your statement on your subjective experience and anecdotal accounts that, even if taken to be accurate, represent a tiny minority of those who would identify as "Star Trek Fans". Also, your characterization of "entitlement", while subjectively applicable to specific individuals, has no meaningful definition with regards to fans at large.
    Yes, because their subjective experiences with a hand full of supposed "bad actors" will always color responses in the absence of hard evidence to the contrary.
     
  16. fireproof78

    fireproof78 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Alec Peterson's Peter's efforts, including to profit from CBS's IP is not subjective. That's exactly what they are trying to avoid in the future. It may not be the average experience but that was the one that took things too far. So the rules get hardened because of the actions of a few. That is almost always my experience in the face of bad actors. It doesn't just impact the few.

    ETA: How did I get that name wrong? :brickwall:
    Thanks, @Maurice .
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2021
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  17. Maurice

    Maurice Fact Trekker Premium Member

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    Alec Peters has no son...I think.
     
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  18. F. King Daniel

    F. King Daniel Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Is he not a Jr? So technically...
     
  19. USS Intrepid

    USS Intrepid Commodore Commodore

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    I suspect that most folks who think there should be a free Star Trek, would feel very differently if Star Trek was actually their intellectual property or some other creative work that they had invested their money and energy into.
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2021
  20. fireproof78

    fireproof78 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I would love to hear their point of view if they actually treated Trek like it was their property and how they would feel if people were just using the property with little regard to what the owner actually wants.

    That's why I argue the way that I do. If this was another person and their own intellectual property being used by another to either make money, crowdfund, or otherwise expand their own interests I would argue against the people violating their property rights too.

    I know, I know, it's a strange concept.
     
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