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 Post subject: Inventor's Rights (a proposition)
PostPosted: Sat May 10, 2014 2:07 pm 
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i would like to propose an addition to the information in the puzzle museum:

considering the recent 'inventor's rights' issue with gr_cubed's '2x2 Super Cube', and other puzzles as well, i believe it would be useful to add a note to entries in the puzzle museum, indicating whether the inventor of a given puzzle has retained or released the rights to it — that is, whether someone else can duplicate and sell a particular puzzle in the museum. Tony Fisher includes exactly such a thing on his website, which i believe is very useful information to puzzle builders.

naturally, to avoid undue burden on the curator, this proposition would only apply to puzzles added to the museum from the present onward, with notes on past puzzles being added on a case-by-case basis -- for example, such a note could be added to puzzles related to gr_cubed's creation (assuming anyone can determine which one it is most similar to).

modifications of this idea would include notes indicating such things as Public Domain, Recindment of Rights, or Rights Unknown.

so,

1) does this addition sound useful?

2) is it practical and possible?

3) does anyone have an alternate suggestion?


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 Post subject: Re: Inventor's Rights (a proposition)
PostPosted: Sat May 10, 2014 2:20 pm 
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I don't think it's practical. The "rights" an inventor is willing to grant to the community is often far more complex than "allowed to use".

I think the right way to do this would be for inventors to choose a "license" (for example some of the CreativeCommons licenses) and only if an inventor has released something under a specific license would any sort of link or information appear.

I personally think this is more trouble than it's worth.

Instead I'd like to see museum entries link to the various threads where the puzzle was presented or significantly discussed. This would have the added benefit of showing people what the license is, should an inventor choose to post information about the license in their original presentation thread.

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 Post subject: Re: Inventor's Rights (a proposition)
PostPosted: Sat May 10, 2014 2:40 pm 
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This would be sort of useful to those who attend and abide by the TP community's rules, but would mean absolutely nothing to anyone else. It would also be a lot of work for Andreas to make sure that such information was kept up-to-date, and in the scheme of things just checking with the inventor is usually not too difficult.

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 Post subject: Re: Inventor's Rights (a proposition)
PostPosted: Sat May 10, 2014 3:14 pm 
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Brandon Enright wrote:
The "rights" an inventor is willing to grant to the community is often far more complex than "allowed to use".

the rights i'm referring to are specifically 'copy and sell' rights, and would essentially be represented by a 'yes' or a 'no', just as Tony Fisher has done. this information is succinct, and easily added or changed.
and it would not be the burden of the curator to verify anything; only to maintain the museum as usual, with this small addition of a flag that, in concept, would require nothing more than a mouseclick to change. the burden would be entirely on the inventor.

links to related threads, while an excellent idea for learning something about the puzzle in general, may not provide useful information on the rights in question. and even if they do, that information would be potentially buried in unrelated text and easily missed.
checking with the inventor is the natural alternative, but is only possible while the inventor is a member of the forum, and is easily contactable. (there are members, for example, who disallow private messages.) all i'm suggesting is making their answers easily accessible.

Gus wrote:
This would be sort of useful to those who attend and abide by the TP community's rules, but would mean absolutely nothing to anyone else.

precisely: this proposal is a direct extension of the forum's Knockoff Policy. it's not intended to apply anywhere else, nor could it be.
like the KO Policy, this is an ethical consideration, not an enforceable legal issue.


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 Post subject: Re: Inventor's Rights (a proposition)
PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2014 11:22 pm 
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It might be possible to capture some simple categories but you would need a solution for the more complex ones like "contact designer".
Personally, I like Brandon's idea of a link to the thread where the puzzle was introduced. This isn't available on all puzzles but I'm sure it would be useful for quite a number of them. Hopefully information on issues of desired rights would be in such threads, but I'm not sure at this point many are. For example Tony's threads don't mention his polices in each new puzzle thread he creates. It is somewhat up to the reader to find out he actually has one of the more documented stances on his intellectual property.

To the degree Sandy has time, a good first step may be a more structured field for a link to more information about the puzzle.

Dave

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 Post subject: Re: Inventor's Rights (a proposition)
PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2014 11:38 pm 
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crypticat wrote:
the rights i'm referring to are specifically 'copy and sell' rights, and would essentially be represented by a 'yes' or a 'no', just as Tony Fisher has done. this information is succinct, and easily added or changed.
and it would not be the burden of the curator to verify anything; only to maintain the museum as usual, with this small addition of a flag that, in concept, would require nothing more than a mouseclick to change.
Even if the museum restricts that information to "I allow copying and selling" that field had to allow for Yes, No and Unknown. I wouldn't want to say "you allow copying unless stated otherwise" or the opposite thing.
crypticat wrote:
the burden would be entirely on the inventor.
And therefore most entries would end with value=unknown.
For 2700 entries (with producer<>custom) that field would not be useful.


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 Post subject: Re: Inventor's Rights (a proposition)
PostPosted: Mon May 12, 2014 12:19 pm 
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DLitwin wrote:
Personally, I like Brandon's idea of a link to the thread where the puzzle was introduced.

it is a good idea. at first i thought going to the oldest thread in the search results for a particular puzzle name would suffice, but more and more i find old threads introducing a puzzle that had not yet been named, and/or not yet built. even if this can only be applied to a handful of puzzles, it would be very handy.

Andreas Nortmann wrote:
...most entries would end with value=unknown. For 2700 entries (with producer<>custom) that field would not be useful.

good point.
both you and Brandon are probably correct:
given the current size of the database, the imprecise nature of this particular information, and the uncertain method of acquiring it for input, this idea may be more trouble than it's worth.
i appreciate the consideration, though, and if a simple solution is eventually found, i think it would be useful to incorporate.

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