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 Post subject: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Thu Feb 26, 2009 10:50 pm 
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The official stance of this site is to remain above the practices of copying puzzles still "protected by their rightful owners", and to support the rightful owners through thoughtful moderation of the site's contents.

Puzzles considered "protected by their rightful owners" includes, but may not be limited to: all puzzles currently in production by their rightful owners, all new puzzle designs and variations created within the last 5 years, and any older designs still being "reserved" by the rightful owner (as Tony has done).

Puzzles considered "not protected by their rightful owners" include, but may not be limited to: puzzles whose patents and/or copyrights have expired and which are no longer in production by the rightful owner, and puzzles that were designed more than 5 years ago but are not being produced and are not "reserved" by the rightful owner. Copying and selling or trading puzzles "not protected by their rightful owners" is considered healthy for our community, so long as they are clearly declared to be copies.

This forum is an inclusive place of dialogue for people who may or may not agree with the official stance of the site itself. Furthermore, this is definitely the place to discuss the issues of puzzle copying, profiteering, patents and copyrights, the pros and cons of the copies, methods of distinguishing the copies from the originals, and so on. So the question then is how to faciliate constructive dialogue without directly or indirectly encouraging the practice of copying puzzles considered "protected by their rightful owners". I have the following suggestions and am open to hearing others before an official forum policy is adopted and added to the Forum Rules page:

  • Avoid linking directly to pages of sites selling copies of puzzles that are "protected by their rightful owners". Linking to other pages on the same sites is acceptable so long as it serves the community.
  • If you wish for the purposes of dialogue to provide illustration of a copy of a puzzle that is "protected by the rightful owner", copy the image and attach it to your post. This has the added benefit of ensuring the image will always be visible, and I just love the irony of copying a picture of a copy.
  • Do not advertise sites, sales or auctions for copies of puzzles that are "protected by their rightful owners", unless the rightful owner is doing the selling.
  • Do not let dialogue on the topic get personal. It's never personal, especially when it seems like it is.
  • Threads and messages that violate the policy will be edited, locked or deleted by a moderator as is apropriate. Users violating the policy will be warned once or twice as is apropriate with temporary bans of exponentially-increasing length on repeat offences.

Sandy


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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Thu Feb 26, 2009 11:03 pm 
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Thank you.
How would one go about "reserving" rights to a design?

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Thu Feb 26, 2009 11:05 pm 
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Sandy wrote:
Puzzles considered "protected by their rightful owners" includes, but may not be limited to: all puzzles currently in production by their rightful owners, all new puzzle designs and variations created within the last 5 years, and any older designs still being "reserved" by the rightful owner (as Tony has done).

Sandy

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Thu Feb 26, 2009 11:06 pm 
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I have a question. What if someone already had an idea for a puzzle, and while they were making it, someone else completes the same exact puzzle, and reserves the rights? Would they both have the rights reserved? It sounds like a good argument.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Thu Feb 26, 2009 11:13 pm 
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PotatoSpades22095 wrote:
I have a question. What if someone already had an idea for a puzzle, and while they were making it, someone else completes the same exact puzzle, and reserves the rights? Would they both have the rights reserved? It sounds like a good argument.


Obviously this policy is not all inclusive and could never really be so. At certain points there will be judgment calls that must be made. This also pertains primarily to puzzles that are mass produced, not so much for one-at-a-Time hand made puzzles.

There may also be situations where we may follow the "spirit" of the law as opposed to the "letter" of law. Meaning that while a particular puzzle may hold the first patent for a design in one place, as a consensus people may know that the design actually came from somewhere else and policy may reflect the "spirit" more than the "letter."

As needs change so will the official policy.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Thu Feb 26, 2009 11:30 pm 
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This is the exact kind of policy we need around here to prevent people from advertising counterfeit puzzles! Excellent guidelines.

PotatoSpades22095 wrote:
I have a question. What if someone already had an idea for a puzzle, and while they were making it, someone else completes the same exact puzzle, and reserves the rights? Would they both have the rights reserved? It sounds like a good argument.


In my opinion there are a number of variables that have to be factored in to this question. At the time the puzzle is created by person B, is person A still just sketching on a napkin? And what would stop somebody from seeing a puzzle announced and then also claiming to be working on one?

This situation has only happened twice that I can remember. The first was with Matt and I in our design of the junior barrel. However, both of us used very different mechanisms, so I would imagine that we both own the "rights" to our unique mechanism.

The other time I can remember this happening, was with the Gigaminx V2. Adam and Tyler created these puzzles almost at the exact same time, so this would be a harder call then the first situation, because both parties are entitled to the puzzle.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Thu Feb 26, 2009 11:34 pm 
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There's also the Button Cube made by timselkirk and the Knob Cube designed by Alokin.

(Yes, I am new here. :wink:)


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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Thu Feb 26, 2009 11:44 pm 
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this has been needed for some time

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 12:04 am 
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Sandy wrote:
[*] If you wish for the purposes of dialogue to provide illustration of a copy of a puzzle that is "protected by their rightful owner", copy the image and attach it to your post. This has the added benefit of ensuring the image will always be visible, and I just love the irony of copying a picture of a copy.[*]
Sandy


I just want to make this clear for myself. If I make a comparison thread, I am still ok by your guidelines as long as I don't state explicitly where I acquired the copy. As others have said, I have much ease of access to these copied puzzles. I think there is a need to show what is out there, ie the Alexander's stars being sold right now so that others don't get burned on them. If this violates your policy, please let me know.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 12:23 am 
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katsmom wrote:
Sandy wrote:
[*] If you wish for the purposes of dialogue to provide illustration of a copy of a puzzle that is "protected by their rightful owner", copy the image and attach it to your post. This has the added benefit of ensuring the image will always be visible, and I just love the irony of copying a picture of a copy.[*]
Sandy


I just want to make this clear for myself. If I make a comparison thread, I am still ok by your guidelines as long as I don't state explicitly where I acquired the copy. As others have said, I have much ease of access to these copied puzzles. I think there is a need to show what is out there, ie the Alexander's stars being sold right now so that others don't get burned on them. If this violates your policy, please let me know.


That's about the gist of it. If you went down to your local shopping district and had a picture of what you saw, then you could certainly post it. If someone asked "where" then a reasonable answer is "a shopping center in <city x>" but no address or direct web link. This really only pertains to public postings so we can't exactly patrol what you may or may not say off of the public forum.

For the most part it's not too difficult to tell if someone is trying to push the boundaries of the rules as opposed to an honest mistake or oversight, either by their wording or by a repeat pattern of abuse, so I don't think most people really have much to really worry about.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 1:24 am 
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Unknown_soul wrote:
There's also the Button Cube made by timselkirk and the Knob Cube designed by Alokin.

Technically they are different puzzles. The button cube has more different possible combinations due to the stickers on the surface being a potentially different color than the button color, whereas the knob cube doesn't have a color underneath it.

Also, the knob cube has four parts on all sides, whereas the button cube is more bandaged, having three parts on all sides in a solved state.

Anyway, back on topic- thanks for putting the wheels in motion toward a good policy in this matter, Sandy.


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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 2:57 am 
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I'm hesitant to get involved in this discussion in light of recent threads, but I believe this question will lead in a better direction.

How does everyone feel about the following scenarios:

1)Person A and Person B both invent puzzle X, unaware of eachother's work and then both claim the resulting puzzle. On closer inspection, their creations have similar mechanisms, (ie: same number of pieces) but they do bear some slight differences. Both puzzle producers wish to sell copies. (Real world example: Helicopter Cube vs Bevel Cube, if they were to be sold that is.....)

2)Person A invents puzzle X. Person B obtains puzzle X through a transaction. Person B then proceeds to mod puzzle X into puzzle Y. Puzzle Y is mathematically identical to puzzle X - that is given identical scrambles and identical solves on the two puzzles would be guaranteed to solve both (so neccesary orientations are all identical too). Person B then proceeds to sell copies of puzzle Y. (Real world example: Pyraminx Crystal vs Tony Fisher's Icosidodecaminx Puzzle)

3)Person A invents puzzle X. Person B sees puzzle X on the web, but never gets to hold, play with, or see the internal mechanism of puzzle X. Person B, however, is very clever and finds a way to create puzzle X on his own - let's call his version puzzle Y. As in scenario 1, puzzles X and Y are externally identical and internally similar, but it is obviously not a molded copy. Person B then begins to sell copies of puzzle Y. (No real world example I know of, but hypothetically, let's say I begin selling Master Skewbs)

3a,3b) In scenario 3 what if a)puzzle X was for sale on market already? (I begin selling 24 Cubes/Little Chops)
or b) mechs/internal structures bear no resemblance to eachother? (I begin selling Pentultimates made the REAL way)
PS) no offense to io intended on that last hypothetical - I actually think his mech was an ingenius shortcut! The hypothetical Pentultimates would be made similar to the 24 Cube/Little Chop - which IS possible;)

I personally support all of the above scenarios, but am open to others' thoughts. I believe directly molding and copying an existing puzzle is unethical/illegal, but these situations are different, right? :P

I don't intend to get into a heated argument here, I just want to get everyone thinking about some grey areas. :)

Peace


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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 2:59 am 
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Scott Bedard wrote:

This situation has only happened twice that I can remember. The first was with Matt and I in our design of the junior barrel. However, both of us used very different mechanisms, so I would imagine that we both own the "rights" to our unique mechanism.

The other time I can remember this happening, was with the Gigaminx V2. Adam and Tyler created these puzzles almost at the exact same time, so this would be a harder call then the first situation, because both parties are entitled to the puzzle.


What about the helicopter cube?

Edit: Allagem mentioned that, but we post almost at the same time.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 3:31 am 
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The HC cube to me is owned by the two 'inventors'. But it is such a simple mechanism and concept you could argue it is owned by nobody.

If I were to make a rex cube then certainly I could have invented the mechanism on my own, but the right would still be Drewseph's as I obviously used his as inspiration.

I would want to state that I think only concepts of puzzles can be owned by anybody, not the mechanism. We have come to a point where we have discovered a technique that can make almost any puzzle so I would say that mechanisms are public property.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 3:36 am 
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This is a good idea, and I think in the light of current events, broadly speaking, a very necessary stance for this site to take.

Some tweaks/ adjustments and refinements may be needed to policy. However, for the good (and the future) of the community, it is important that there is some agreement on protection of ideas based on morals and good sense where law does not sufffice.

In such a creative and developing field, there are bound to be grey areas in certain instances. But I think in 90% of cases these can be resolved by sensible discussion between the involved parties (preferably before going public, but this is not always possible if a builder is unaware of other similar puzzles), and no-one needs get hurt. If agreement cannot be reached, then the issue can be opened to general debate. If people are sensible and reasonable and open to some compromise, this will benefit everyone.


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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 8:59 am 
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TomZ wrote:
The HC cube to me is owned by the two 'inventors'. But it is such a simple mechanism and concept you could argue it is owned by nobody.


Yes, this is crux of the matter, and it is where things get tricky. Many of you may have read of Gustafson's Globe, a 2x2x2 sphere invented by William Gustafson in 1958. (Yes, 1958!) Granted, it did not have the excellent mechanism that Rubik was able to develop 16 years later, but the germ of the idea was already there. Terutoshi Ishige is credited with independently developing a 3x3x3 mechanism very similar to Rubik's around the same time (1975). Larry Nichols had a patented 3x3x3 sphere (magnetic mechanism) in 1972.

In all these cases, we give credit primarily to Erno Rubik because of the elegance of his mechanism and the fact that it was able to be practically manufactured. However, if this is the criteria, then maybe credit should go to Meffert for inventing the twisty puzzle concept, since his Pyraminx mechanism also predates Rubik's Cube.

Regardless of who gets or deserves credit, the fact is that starting around 1980, the cat was out of the bag. People seized on the notion and began to expand on it. It was only a short time later that the 4x4x4 (Peter Sebesteny) and 5x5x5 (Udo Krell) appeared. Verdes also claims to have had designs for a 5x5x5 as early as 1985. Probably dozens of other people visualized similar designs, but did not have the resources to actually produce them.

It has reached a point where these designs are more or less a special branch of polyhedral geometry. Thus, new puzzles are more or less "discovered" rather than "invented." Of course to physically produce a mechanism, a good deal of engineering is still required. It is for these actual working mechanisms that patents are awarded.

In the case of the Pentultimate for example, I independently "invented" it. But being a software engineer rather than a mechanical engineer, I wrote a computer simulation of one rather than work out a physical mechanism (although I have dozens of sketches of possible ideas). Jason Smith gets credit for producing the first working physical model of one, although his mechanism was also conceived by others years earlier-- just never actually built. Also, years after thinking of the idea, I read that Rubik proposed a similar dodecahedral puzzle with "just one plane of rotation halfway between opposite faces." This clearly describes the same puzzle. So who "owns" the Pentultimate? The first one to think of it? The first one to name it? The first one to simulate it? The first one to design (on paper) a mechanism for one? The first one to first build such a mechanism?

In my case, I was never out for money, and I always assumed that others had probably independently "invented" the same puzzle. Therefore when I published my software version of Pentultimate, I eagerly hoped that somone (i.e. Meffert) would engineer and produce it. As a puzzle enthusiast, I just want access to play with the puzzles themselves!

So I think this area is very gray and one for which it is difficult to establish a working policy. I mean truthfully, if some Chinese manufacturing facility started cranking out working versions of the Pentultimate for a reasonable price, would it really be immoral? And would it be wrong for us to be excited about it, share the news, and purchase it? As one of the "inventors," I think not.

Chris


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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 10:23 am 
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I think it would be nearly impossible to develop a working policy regarding non-copying. Essentially this is an attempt to mimic patents. In a sense that would require full disclosure, same as with patents, otherwise the puzzle can be developed by someone else as no full info has been known of the puzzle... The only thing I think we might be able to cover by the policy is truly original external designs such as Golden cube or Praxis cube. Well, this is just a piece of thought.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 1:24 pm 
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Yep, focusing on the grey areas definitely complicates things. I choose instead to focus on the clarity of my own values and principals. It's merely in the translation between the spirit and the letter that things get lost. I know the spirit, and guiding myself by it couldn't be simpler. I suspect most of us are the same.

Sandy


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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 4:04 pm 
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TomZ wrote:
I would want to state that I think only concepts of puzzles can be owned by anybody, not the mechanism. We have come to a point where we have discovered a technique that can make almost any puzzle so I would say that mechanisms are public property.


I'm sorry but I disagree 100%. The mechanism is the most important part of the intellectual property for me because mechanisms are very different even for the same type of puzzle (Gigaminx v1 versus v2) and that can have a huge effect on the turning and stability (both long-term and short-term) of the puzzle. By the way, for shape mods, I think credit (and royalties) should go to both the original mechanism designer and the person who designed the new shape.

Ever since computer simulators started coming out they have been much more advanced (in terms of the puzzles included) than real-life collections of custom mechanism puzzles. I could argue that IsoCubeSim explicitly includes the generalized 'concept' of every NxMxL cuboid, and gelatinbrain includes the 'concept' of hundreds of puzzles which did not exist before it, such as the Rex Cube. I'm sure that for most of these puzzles those two were not the first, but it doesn't matter - the point is that if you invent a way to construct a new cuboid or a new puzzle on gelatinbrain, the puzzle has been conceived of before. However the mechanism - the thing that allows the puzzle to be realizable in real life - is what's new, and I think we can take it as fact that the inventors of IsoCubeSim (me) and gelatinbrain did not invent mechanisms to go along with the puzzles their programs simulate. Basically, the way I see it, a mechanism is a way to realize a theoretical puzzle, and in that sense it is the most important part of creating the puzzle - the interior of a puzzle is just as important as the interior of a computer or a car. If a company in Asia invents a new mechanism (i.e. not a trivial modification of an existing one) for a known puzzle and then produces it (East Sheen for instance), to me it is not at all a knockoff, and there are no moral or ethical problems with them selling it.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 4:18 pm 
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I would think we can all agree that cuboids and basic cuts and truncations can not be claimed by anyone for reserved rights. I also think it should be pointed out that you should be able to replicated any puzzle you want as long as you do not profit off of it.

Other than that I think we can figure out many of the situations as they arise. But I will say that it shouldn't be too hard in most cases, like if someone had said they were just finishing a Praxis right after Drew posted his. And in general, I don't see the need for "I am already making that" or "I am in the process of making that" comments. If it is something that could be thought up by multiple people near the same time, it probably falls into the "anyone could think of these" category.


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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 5:06 pm 
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I think that there are a few others that should go into the "anyone can think of this" catagory. Such as higher order puzzles, and variations of prisms. EX: 1 layer trigonal prisom, 2 layer trigonal prism, 4 layer trigonal prism, 1 layer pentagonal prism, 2 layer pentagonal prism, 4 layer pentagonal prisom, 1 layer hexagonal prisom, 2 layer hexagonal prisom, 3 layer hexagonal prism, heptigonal prisom, decicgonal prisom, ect. I put all prisms in a category (like cuboids are all in 1 category)


EDIT: sorry that the word prism was misspelled every time. It didn't appear misspelled in my spellcheck.

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Last edited by PotatoSpades22095 on Sat Feb 28, 2009 2:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Sat Feb 28, 2009 11:07 am 
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Dude seriously, it's prism. Please, if your entire post is based off of that word, make sure it's spelled right. Sorry, that was highly irritating.

Either way, i'm glad we've set a standard for knockoff support, or rather the lack thereof. Now it's impossible to NOT know the forum's opinion on this matter.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Wed Mar 11, 2009 9:35 pm 
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Now what would happen if 2 people built something that neither knew about. But one let it known publically along the way of the construction but the other only showed others when it was done? I know it would be a very rare occasion, but I have known it to happen. I honestly have no clue what who would get the credit for making the item.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Wed Mar 11, 2009 9:42 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2009 6:05 am 
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Do the non-Rubik's 3x3 cubes (DIY cubes, etc) break the knockoff policy?

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2009 6:12 am 
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nicky_uk wrote:
Do the non-Rubik's 3x3 cubes (DIY cubes, etc) break the knockoff policy?


The Rubik's cube patent is long expired, and the puzzle is *definitely* not under 5 years old. Besides, the policy explicitly mentions DIY cubes as ok.


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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2009 6:21 am 
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JasperJ wrote:
nicky_uk wrote:
Do the non-Rubik's 3x3 cubes (DIY cubes, etc) break the knockoff policy?


The Rubik's cube patent is long expired, and the puzzle is *definitely* not under 5 years old. Besides, the policy explicitly mentions DIY cubes as ok.


Ok - Thanks.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2009 1:23 pm 
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qqwref wrote:
[snip]

I'm sorry but I disagree 100%. The mechanism is the most important part of the intellectual property for me because mechanisms are very different even for the same type of puzzle (Gigaminx v1 versus v2) and that can have a huge effect on the turning and stability (both long-term and short-term) of the puzzle. By the way, for shape mods, I think credit (and royalties) should go to both the original mechanism designer and the person who designed the new shape.

[snip]


Then I would get credit for designing the shape of the void cube?

David J

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2009 1:32 pm 
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Sandy wrote:
The official stance of this site is to remain above the practices of copying puzzles still "protected by their rightful owners", and to support the rightful owners through thoughtful moderation of the site's contents.[snip]

Sandy


Hey Sandy,

I don't know the legal status of the Deluxe cube. I know that Seven Towns bought all of the rights to the cube from Ideal. I don't know if that included the Deluxe design and technical properties. In addition, the Deluxe has been out of production for 27 years.

My question is this: I asked Seven Towns to make the Deluxe again and they refused. Would the policy you outlined allow others to produce the deluxe again and sell it?

David J

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Thu Mar 19, 2009 7:56 pm 
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I do not feel there would be any issue with someone reproducing a "deluxe cube" as long as it wasn't trying to be passed off as an original. The basic mechanism is the same, only very slight changes in its configuration. Mostly though it would still fall under the rule of thumb that a patent on the rubik's cube has long since expired.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Thu Mar 19, 2009 9:14 pm 
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Jin H Kim wrote:
I do not feel there would be any issue with someone reproducing a "deluxe cube" as long as it wasn't trying to be passed off as an original. The basic mechanism is the same, only very slight changes in its configuration. Mostly though it would still fall under the rule of thumb that a patent on the rubik's cube has long since expired.


Thanks Jin,

I wondered about it because it was developed by Ideal and would have been a different patent from the original cube.
I also don't know what the patent renewal law is now. I knew what it was a long time ago, but I heard it's been changed. Under the old rules the patent could still be alive now.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Wed Mar 25, 2009 10:48 pm 
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Just to throw in my two cents:
It seems to me that the issue should include both the particular type of puzzle in question and the mechanism used to bring that puzzle into reality. The way I see getting around issues of claiming a particular mechanism (which I also believe is the most important part of the puzzle design) is to avoid claiming the mechanism. I see doing this by not claiming the entire concept behind a particular mechanism (i.e. using the V-Cube example, a sphere with pieces that extend directly outwards from the core), but just claiming your particular version of the mechanism.
For example, when one presented a puzzle, they would ideally attach their name to their particular version of the mechanism. Like Jin said, it's highly unlikely that two independently-developed mechanisms would be exactly alike. I just want to point that out because the issue obviously isn't occurring in instances in which mechanisms are radically different.
In instances in which a mechanism is suggested by someone and built by another, I think both the suggester and the designer should be credited. However, I think that the suggester should get most of the credit in this case for having the insight to develop the mechanism and anyone with the proper resources could conceivably actually create the puzzle.
In cases in which two people independently creating a similar mechanism, I don't think there would be a problem if both started selling them, as long as they made sure that their particular names were placed with the proper puzzle. For collection purposes, though, I'd think there would have to be something that both creators can identify that would tell the puzzles apart. And that's probably the most important part: if one can identify what sets their particular version of a mechanism apart from another, then they can claim that anomaly as a part of the puzzle that is truly their own.
If this were to be adopted, the only thing builders would have to worry about is something in their puzzles that would identify them as the builder. And I don't see too much of a problem potentially putting a signature or identifying mark somewhere on the puzzle.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Sun Mar 29, 2009 8:57 pm 
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Im a little confused on this policy. I want to make and sell my own cubes. Some of them would be the same as ones that are already being sold, such as the gigaminx. I would be using my own designs that i make myself, (maybe with a little help). Is this policy stating that i wouldnt be able to sell them if another person already has it here, or what would be how that works?

thanks

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Sat May 09, 2009 11:16 am 
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NightHawk16117 wrote:
Im a little confused on this policy. I want to make and sell my own cubes. Some of them would be the same as ones that are already being sold, such as the gigaminx. I would be using my own designs that i make myself, (maybe with a little help). Is this policy stating that i wouldnt be able to sell them if another person already has it here, or what would be how that works?


As skeptical as I am about you ever finishing a gigaminx, it would be fine to sell it as nobody is claiming rights to the gigaminx. It could be considered public domain.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Sun Dec 13, 2009 9:05 pm 
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i think this could be completely unfair for someone who thinks of a puzzle and mechanism which has already been invented but he/she has never heard of
there were (before i started cubing) a bunch of puzzles i'd never heard of
if i had an idea for a puzzle like that and built it then tried to sell it what would happen?

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Sun Dec 13, 2009 9:32 pm 
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mitchblahman wrote:
i think this could be completely unfair for someone who ...

Very unlikely scenario. It is basically impossible to have an identical mechanism without an influence. I doubt that will ever happen.

(Edited to correct misspelling)

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Mon Dec 14, 2009 12:17 am 
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mitchblahman wrote:
i think this could be completely unfair for someone who thinks of a puzzle and mechanism which has already been invented but he/she has never heard of
there were (before i started cubing) a bunch of puzzles i'd never heard of
if i had an idea for a puzzle like that and built it then tried to sell it what would happen?
I think it has been mentioned above that the policy has flexibility. If you get to the point of selling a unique puzzle and haven't heard of another like it perhaps you aren't a member of this forum.

This policy is how we on this forum wish to respect designers. Simultaneous invention happens (Square-2, Helicopter/Bevel, Brilic/Pyraminx Crystal, etc.).

People have been getting out of hand lately screaming "KO!!!" at any new thing that looks like something else. The wish to protect designers is good, but this haste and emotion doesn't not help. Our goal is respect and protection, and in that pursuit a bit of investigation will doubtless reveal the difference between a real theft of concept/design versus a parallel development.

Dave

P.S. Review the rules, particularly #10. This was not a small bump.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Sat Dec 19, 2009 10:53 pm 
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mitchblahman wrote:
i think this could be completely unfair for someone who thinks of a puzzle and mechanism which has already been invented but he/she has never heard of there were (before i started cubing) a bunch of puzzles i'd never heard of

That happens frequently in industry. This is one of the ways in which patent law is unfair. On the other hand, copyright law is unfair in the opposite direction -- it recognizes the possibility of independent coincidental creation of works that look similar, and then it goes and gives the creators enormously long lasting rights until 50 years after they die.



DLitwin wrote:
I think it has been mentioned above that the policy has flexibility.

Mr. Litwin, let's hear it for flexibility.


DLitwin wrote:
P.S. Review the rules, particularly #10. This was not a small bump.

Mr. Litwin, let's hear it for flexibility. This thread was already stickied to be at the top of this forum every time a reader comes to this forum. This thread was bumped by a massive amount of ZERO locations upwards in the index for this forum.

I understand that you as moderator, like a ton of other participants, want to create a ton of other threads that are knock offs of this one. Some of us others get tired of it and wish that the discussion would remain in one thread. Yeah I know we're weird. But please try considering some flexibility. Sheesh.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Sun Dec 20, 2009 2:18 am 
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ndiamond wrote:
Mr. Litwin, let's hear it for flexibility. This thread was already stickied to be at the top of this forum every time a reader comes to this forum. This thread was bumped by a massive amount of ZERO locations upwards in the index for this forum.
Good point, although no where in rule #10 (when I reviewed it) does it mention post location. But it does go to the issue of "old" being in quotes. This can mean some number of days, or perhaps location can also be factored in. Note that my comment was just in a PS, not a warning, and reviewing the policy does not hurt :)
ndiamond wrote:
I understand that you as moderator, like a ton of other participants, want to create a ton of other threads that are knock offs of this one. Some of us others get tired of it and wish that the discussion would remain in one thread. Yeah I know we're weird. But please try considering some flexibility. Sheesh.
I won't speak for others, but I think you really misunderstand me if you think I *want* a ton of other KO threads. It's a real pain for me. I don't know that there is much left unsaid about the KO issue by now. Fewer posts about it here or in other threads would make my job easier.

Dave

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Tue Sep 14, 2010 8:51 pm 
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In the attempting to keep with the spirit of our policy we prohibit links to KO puzzles on other sites. There are occasions, however, when one can convey the same information as a link without an actual link. This is usually in cases where fully naming the puzzle gives one everything they need to find it with no link. A simple example is "Meffert's Megaminx" which is obviously found on www.mefferts.com, no link necessary.

As such identifying KO puzzles by name and maker is no different from including a link and something we would like to avoid out of courtesy to the original designers.

I believe this was first discussed in this thread.

Dave

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Fri Dec 02, 2011 4:49 pm 
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My official view on this is that one should NOT be able to copyright a puzzle IDEA. Only a fully functional proven design. This would be similar to functionality versus code of computer software.

IMHO it makes sense. Can i copyright an 8th order pyraminx only because i have the idea?? Certainly not IMHO!!

On a sidenote Oskar could probably get copyright on the general 2n+1 order cube ... The design is proven.

Per

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2012 3:43 am 
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DLitwin wrote:
As such identifying KO puzzles by name and maker is no different from including a link and something we would like to avoid out of courtesy to the original designers.

In theory this is something that I agree with, however, as a newbie to the world of twisty puzzles I have no knowledge of what is generally considered to be KO and what is not.

This means that because names cannot be named I will never know whether or not what I'm considering buying is genuine or not, and that is a shame as I am one of the people who feel that the original designers and manufacturers should be respected, and that my money should go towards supporting them.

But what other way will I learn other than buying enough KOs to eventually work it out for myself? I believe a comprehensive list would actually be more of a help than a hinderance for newbies and more experienced puzzlers alike. Especially with the constantly growing puzzle market that we currently have.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2012 5:37 am 
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Oli I'll answer this, not just to you, but to any who might question the 'originality' of a purchase

1)if the price is too good to he true-it's probably not.
2)if in doubt, contact a red or green moderator. We pretty much know the lot of what has come out, and if we don't know the answer we know where to find it.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2012 10:32 am 
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Hybrid424 wrote:
I believe a comprehensive list would actually be more of a help than a hinderance for newbies and more experienced puzzlers alike. Especially with the constantly growing puzzle market that we currently have.

DLitwin started this list for that purpose. A lot of the more commonly knocked off puzzles are listed there, but only by the names of the genuine puzzles. It is a year old though so it'd be nice to see it updated if someone wants to get to it who knows about it.

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Sat May 05, 2012 6:31 am 
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Hi, could you please elaborate more on 'modifying' puzzles ?
For examples, 3x3x3 turns to prism-shaped 3x3x3, Square-1 turns to dodecahedron etc etc etc.
Does this violate any rules ?
Or Does this will only violate certain rules if they are on SALE ?
Thank you.


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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Sun May 06, 2012 12:04 am 
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cocteau wrote:
Hi, could you please elaborate more on 'modifying' puzzles ?
For examples, 3x3x3 turns to prism-shaped 3x3x3, Square-1 turns to dodecahedron etc etc etc.
Does this violate any rules ?
Or Does this will only violate certain rules if they are on SALE ?
Thank you.
Your best bet for understanding these is to read the forum and see how they have been answered in the past.

There is no one answer to these questions. It depends entirely on what you do, relative to what others have done. In general if you copy the design of someone to build a puzzle for yourself that is your own business. But if you were to copy someone's design and offer it for sale without their approval, this site would not allow it.

This of course very much depends on the definition of "someone else's design", which is a large grey area in many puzzles. If you have *any* doubt, PM a Moderator or Admin to ask first.

Dave

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 11:26 am 
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As at the moment all 8x8's are considered KO's ([Admin: The V-Cube 8 has since been released, so mods of that are welcome to be sold here]), does that mean if a shape mod was performed on an 8x8, I couldn't use this forum to advertise I'm selling it?

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 Post subject: Re: Knockoff Policy
PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 11:50 am 
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Correct.

This has been discussed before, here. These comments by a moderator and an administrator were made there.

katsmom wrote:
Selling a puzzle on TP made from a KO seems to me to be a violation of the spirit of the KO policy. I would say don't do it.

DLitwin wrote:
Please feel free to show your work and link to videos if it can be done in a manner that avoids focus on or advertisement of the KO puzzle. And if it is your [...] desire to sell these works please don't use this forum to do so.


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