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 Post subject: Alternative Vulcano manufacturer
PostPosted: Mon Jul 30, 2012 9:06 am 
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Location: Germany, Siegerland
Hi! It seems like my Vulcano has been knocked off and is selling for $11.11 :)

I will not post the link as it would violate i.14 of the forum rules, but the first Google search result for "cheap domestic volcano cube" will bring you right to the shop.

I held one in my hands. Its quality is worse than the Meffert's, but I think it's worth $11. With a knife, lube and a little handwork you can turn it into a decent puzzle.

To be honest, my personal attitude to intellectual property is rather free and kind of different than that of the most forum members (at least it seems so). So I absolutely don't mind if you buy this puzzle, neither will I lose anything: from mass sales of Vulcanos since the end of 2010 I've got 10 puzzles and $0 from the original manufacturer so far. Still, if you feel that by buying it you're acting against your conscience, you're always welcome to send me a couple of dollars (if it helps you feel yourself clear :) ). Moreover, you can have it delivered to me and I'll sign it for you for some "legalization fee" that includes shipment, and this option would still be cheaper than buying an original puzzle.

Timur


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 Post subject: Re: Alternative Vulcano manufacturer
PostPosted: Mon Jul 30, 2012 9:12 am 
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Well, then congratulations are in order? :P Really, not a bad idea to get some extra money out of this with the whole "legalization" idea...

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 Post subject: Re: Alternative Vulcano manufacturer
PostPosted: Mon Jul 30, 2012 10:04 am 
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Location: Russia
a good position! I respect you

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 Post subject: Re: Alternative Vulcano manufacturer
PostPosted: Tue Jul 31, 2012 12:28 am 
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Timur wrote:
To be honest, my personal attitude to intellectual property is rather free and kind of different than that of the most forum members (at least it seems so). So I absolutely don't mind if you buy this puzzle, neither will I lose anything: from mass sales of Vulcanos since the end of 2010 I've got 10 puzzles and $0 from the original manufacturer so far.
I think there are many differing views on the KO matter and that is fine as long as conduct on the forum meets our policy (and in this thread it does).

In general I would think calling something KO was entirely up to the designer so it is only KO if you say it is (e.g. the Square-2 where I was first build it but make no claim on the design, so none are KO).

The one concern I would have is respecting Meffert along the lines of your agreement with him. Since he invested considerable money to produce your design it wouldn't be polite to under cut him by supporting someone who reduces his ability to recuperate that investment. And it wouldn't be appropriate for the forum to support impolite behavior to someone who has given our community many puzzles and given many designers a shot at getting their designs manufactured with zero investment beyond a puzzle prototype.

As for what you got from the original manufacturer, I suppose that is all relative to the original agreement. For the Flowerminx I had a very similar deal: I received a number of puzzles and $0 and haven't seen anything since. This is exactly as agreed before the production run, so I have no complaints. Should the puzzle ever go on to wider production I trust royalties will flow my way as agreed, but don't see that happening any time soon.

So for now I believe the KO policy is best served by keeping direct links out (as you already have) as appropriate respect not to the designer in this case, but to Meffert for investment to bring that puzzle to the community. I think we can all agree there would be no knock off to buy without this investment and effort on his part.

Dave

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 Post subject: Re: Alternative Vulcano manufacturer
PostPosted: Thu Aug 02, 2012 2:12 am 
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DLitwin wrote:
For the Flowerminx I had a very similar deal: I received a number of puzzles and $0 and haven't seen anything since. This is exactly as agreed before the production run, so I have no complaints.


I don't know if you are aware Dave, but the Flowerminx has also been made by another manufacturer and retails for roughly $7.50 - $8.

Robert

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 Post subject: Re: Alternative Vulcano manufacturer
PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2012 10:03 am 
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DLitwin wrote:
As for what you got from the original manufacturer, I suppose that is all relative to the original agreement. For the Flowerminx I had a very similar deal: I received a number of puzzles and $0 and haven't seen anything since. This is exactly as agreed before the production run, so I have no complaints. Should the puzzle ever go on to wider production I trust royalties will flow my way as agreed, but don't see that happening any time soon.

my opinion:
Why defend a man who does not pay royalties to inventors?
What his actions differ from the KO companies?

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Last edited by grigr on Fri Aug 03, 2012 10:52 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Alternative Vulcano manufacturer
PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2012 10:35 am 
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grigr wrote:
my opinion:
Why defend a man who does not pay royalties to inventors?
What his actions differ from the KO companies?
Doesn't Uwe work with and get permission from designers? I've gotten the impression that designers have been happy with the deal they've struck with Uwe.

And I do think some designers get royalties. I pretty sure the "designed by" stickers Uwe puts on the puzzles helps pay royalties to some.

So defend Uwe because the designers that have worked with him have been happy with whatever deal was struck.

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 Post subject: Re: Alternative Vulcano manufacturer
PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2012 10:54 am 
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Joined: Mon Mar 22, 2010 7:00 am
Location: Germany, Siegerland
Sure, the permission is granted. The problem is that he is too forgetful to fulfill his obligations :))

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 Post subject: Re: Alternative Vulcano manufacturer
PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2012 12:48 am 
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grigr wrote:
Why defend a man who does not pay royalties to inventors?
Without knowing the details of their arrangement it isn't proper to have an opinion either way, but I thought it relevant to point out no initial royalties *may* be entirely within the original agreement (as it was with me and some others who have worked with Meffert). It is not at all uncommon to have contracts where there is a fixed up front payment and royalties only follow after a certain number of units sell to recuperate the production investment. This is how contracts used to work in Video Games in the 1990s, at least.

This forum has many accounts of people being unhappy with less than prompt customer service but in most cases the issues are resolved with a bit of time. I would hope this might be the case here. It is entirely possible Meffert has decided to burn his reputation with puzzle designers and simply ignore his obligations, but that wouldn't be my first guess.
grigr wrote:
What his actions differ from the KO companies?
I can think of two differences right off: He entered into an agreement and gave some initial compensation. Without this initial production I am fairly sure the recently copied version would never have existed. The investment to go from Shapeways design to injection design is not nearly as easy as copying an existing injection design.

This does not excuse anyone ignoring their business or ethical obligations but is a significant difference from how blatant copiers work, who never bother to get permission nor offer anything to the original designer.
Robert111 wrote:
I don't know if you are aware Dave, but the Flowerminx has also been made by another manufacturer and retails for roughly $7.50 - $8.
I believe someone had mentioned that. I can't say I am too surprised other than being perhaps a bit flattered someone thought it worth copying. I would not condone anyone buying KO versions.

Dave

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