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PostPosted: Sun Jan 07, 2007 10:13 pm 
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The issue I brought up with the money was more of a counterpoint to your statement that the market is big enough. I don't think it is, and if an inventor did want to make some money off of his creation, then someone duplicating it can easily dillute the market.

Bryan


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 07, 2007 11:39 pm 
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Bryan, thanks for clarification. That's exactly what I am trying to accomplish here: bring out the real reasons behind unwillingness to allow others to duplicate puzzles for sale.

I am a strong believer in that those reasons should be clearly stated and understood. If it is not so, then I better stop and we get back to square one.

If it's more for the money, then so it is. That is, for maximum possible money I might add, as I and you brought up the matter of dilution. That hurts the puzzle availability, but that's up to the puzzle creator whose main interest is not that, right?

There is nothing wrong with that, really. It's the clarity that helps to understand the motives and respect them.

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Last edited by Aleksey on Mon Jan 08, 2007 3:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 08, 2007 2:38 pm 
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I built the SuperX because I wanted one, and there was not one that I could buy. This puzzle is not my original idea, but is well discussed on this forum, so I decided it would be a good puzzle to make and sell. One aspect of selling the puzzles is to earn money for the next projects that I will build, but another one is earning the respect of the puzzling community and getting the recognition for my accomplishments. I feel that if someone wants to make their own SuperX they are free to do so, and sell it, but I will not give away my design as it represents a significant investment of time and money on my part. The name SuperX is not my own creation, so the puzzle could be sold under that name.

On future projects, I may secure the intellectual property rights on my design and name. In this case if someone came up with a different way to make the puzzle, they would need to give it a new name. (see the Aleh,s Brilic post for an example)

The example on this post is the design of the Cubie Chaos puzzles. In my opinion, for the puzzle to be different from the CC1 & CC2 they should use a different configuration, give the puzzle a new name (not Cubie Chaos 3 without permission from Tony), and give Tony the recognition for his creation that inspired your new puzzle. A little "Thank You" can go a long way. Tony has come up with new and innovative designs every year, and deserves the credit for his inventions, and his contributions to the field of custom puzzles.

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 08, 2007 4:48 pm 
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Puzzlemaster42 wrote:
One aspect of selling the puzzles is to earn money for the next projects that I will build, but another one is earning the respect of the puzzling community and getting the recognition for my accomplishments.


This is usually why i modify puzzles. also to gain experience to build someting harder.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 12, 2007 5:44 pm 
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The results of now finished auction on a copy of CubieChaos 1 puzzle is actually in favor of my understanding that it's the original puzzles from creators that are in great demand. I've seen that with other puzzles as well. I believe if Tony were to sell another CubieChaos 1 in the near future it would fetch a much heftier price. That was in part the reason for my thinking there is not much of a dilution. Originals and copies have different markets.

Anyhow, I would still love to hear from puzzle creators what are the reasons for them to NOT allow others to build and sell or trade copies of the puzzles they designed. I would like to get a bigger participation in this discussion before we can try to formulate some sort of a code here.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 12, 2007 7:47 pm 
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Aleksey wrote:
The results of now finished auction on a copy of CubieChaos 1 puzzle is actually in favor of my understanding that it's the original puzzles from creators that are in great demand. I've seen that with other puzzles as well. I believe if Tony were to sell another CubieChaos 1 in the near future it would fetch a much heftier price.


IMHO I don't think it is fair to make such a comparision as this could have happened due to some important facts:

1) The builder is young and his products are not well known in the puzzle community (at least not yet). The price would definitely match Tony's had it been made by a more professional and experienced builder.
(Now imagine if someone starts making copies of high quality original parts using a new generation 3-d printer.... Oh no!!!! :shock: )
2) Many serious collectors who know the forum did not bid out of respect to Tony, since the naming of the auctioned puzzle was already misleading in some sense.




Aleksey wrote:
That was in part the reason for my thinking there is not much of a dilution. Originals and copies have different markets.


Even with that result, a potential bidder for the original creator who could help (directly or indirectly) to raise the price is lost forever. :oops:
(ok ok I may be exaggerating here LOL)



Aleksey wrote:
Anyhow, I would still love to hear from puzzle creators what are the reasons for them to NOT allow others to build and sell or trade copies of the puzzles they designed. I would like to get a bigger participation in this discussion before we can try to formulate some sort of a code here.


Yes, it is very important to hear more opinions, someone has to help me to keep stalking Aleksey! :P
(by the way Aleksey... should we summarise the results so far?)



Pantazis

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 12, 2007 8:51 pm 
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sorry to butt in but just wanted to add my 2 cents...

I feel that I may be partly to blame for such increase in puzzle prices. I know I'm not the only one who wants these puzzles; because of that of course naturally the price will shoot up - the supply vs demand aspect :P

Of course many of Tony's puzzles are not patented nor does he own the rights to them. He of course has much pride in his work, but he also loves the puzzle community. He hasn't written many articles, some which are even archived here! Many have used his techniques and he was happy to share them.

But then there are his pride and joy... Golden Cube and his other own unique creations, many of which aren't shared just yet - but that still should be up to him.

With that being said, it's his craftsmanship that is truly what makes it special and CAN be sold for such premium prices. By no means am I knocking on any other builders out there, but in Tony's case I don't think I have to further explain why.

There were many times where I was able to purchase or win on ebay on great puzzle but I sometimes set myself a lower price being it wasn't being sold by the creator. To me I would pay a high price for a hard to come by puzzle but I'd feel better paying a premium price if it was being sold by the creator.

I think everyone should be able to make puzzles and sell them. It takes a lot of work to make them. But we all should properly Credit the type of puzzle and who's idea it originated from. I think it's only fair. Even when Tony sold his Halpern-Meier Pyramid, he of course said that it was made by that maker. Of course he wouldn't be able to get away with saying that it was his own creation.

I think we are a small enough community to know who originated such puzzles and can see if it's a knock off or the original thing. I had bought a few puzzles off of someone, which Tony had made. It made me feel a lot better that Tony confirmed that he did indeed make them and not the person selling it. And of course the seller was not taking any credit for making them. Everyone was honest and I felt great with that transaction.

If we are all honest and upfront about everything, I don't think anyone can go wrong. No matter what policy, if we give proper credit and not deceive all should be well :)

--- I don't know if that will solve anything but I just had to add my thoughts.

cheers,
reeeech

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2007 6:33 am 
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Sometimes it's difficult to undestand the mind of the people.... :shock: I'm not disappointed, but only cannot understand.. :roll: Nobody's fault guys..but 2 months ago T.F. CC1 went for 330 Euro :shock: , and I mean, it'sa plastic made puzzle, exactly the same that there were in my auction, not a gold or platinum made cube...in my auction 51 Euro, no problems, but that confirm the idea that the price of a puzzle is not for quality or worked time to build it, but MAINLY BY THE NAME OF SELLER! As the ARMANI, GUCCI, VALENTINO, MERCEDES, and so on.....it's not Tony's fault, he was very corrected in this forum, but the cubiechaos I made was really well done, so I think that many people who bids for CC1 in Tony's auction lost a great opportunity to get CC1 for few money, maybe they are more interested about puzzle's auctor then the puzzle itself! :shock: :? :oops: I think that if I am a collector and can get a puzzle that I'm not able to make, it's better if I pay it at low cost, expecially if the quality of the puzzles is also good..., i.e. I never will spend over 1000 Euro for a Golden cube, but if I could get it for 100_200 Euro maybe I'd buy it! :P I don't look at name but at the quality/price ratio... :D .
So guys....no angry, no problems, no disappointment, but only thinking how strange, weird and sometimes no logic is the world.... :P
That's better for Tony and the other "famous" puzzlebuilders, next time for goldencube maybe 3000 Euro, maybe I will win the Lotto!! so I can also purchase one!!
Nice greetings to all puzzlelovers!! 8-)


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2007 5:55 pm 
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kastellorizo wrote:
Aleksey wrote:
That was in part the reason for my thinking there is not much of a dilution. Originals and copies have different markets.

Even with that result, a potential bidder for the original creator who could help (directly or indirectly) to raise the price is lost forever. :oops:
(ok ok I may be exaggerating here LOL)

Again, there was no potential bidder. These are different markets. A bidder for copies would not have bid on expensive original puzzles. Some comments in this topic actually confirm that. I know for myself I am not a potential bidder as well.

There are lots of people that would love to have this or that puzzle, only to find out that it's expensive beyond anything they could pay for it. The tendency I observe it that only a handful of copies of new puzzles are made by their creators. There are a couple of reasons for that. One is, indeed, the desire to make something new rather than making copies of the invention. But the other, as far as I can see is that. You can only sell so many puzzles at very high prices. So the answer to that is diversification: you only make a few of each. That deliberately limits the number of puzzles available.

There are opinions here in favor of the view that puzzles should be available for other builders to make and sell, provided all kinds of proper credit is given to the creators. I am in favor of that as well.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2007 10:02 pm 
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Aleksey wrote:
kastellorizo wrote:
Aleksey wrote:
That was in part the reason for my thinking there is not much of a dilution. Originals and copies have different markets.

Even with that result, a potential bidder for the original creator who could help (directly or indirectly) to raise the price is lost forever. :oops:
(ok ok I may be exaggerating here LOL)

Again, there was no potential bidder. These are different markets. A bidder for copies would not have bid on expensive original puzzles. Some comments in this topic actually confirm that. I know for myself I am not a potential bidder as well.


This is definitely not true in my case with the magics. Although I do original puzzles, the prices can never ever be high enough to ensure copiers will earn less. Therefore, the "different" markets are merged here. I know it because I tried it. Unless of course, you want this discussion to only focus on the high price markets.



Aleksey wrote:
There are lots of people that would love to have this or that puzzle, only to find out that it's expensive beyond anything they could pay for it. The tendency I observe it that only a handful of copies of new puzzles are made by their creators. There are a couple of reasons for that. One is, indeed, the desire to make something new rather than making copies of the invention. But the other, as far as I can see is that. You can only sell so many puzzles at very high prices. So the answer to that is diversification: you only make a few of each. That deliberately limits the number of puzzles available.


For diplomatic reasons I will agree with your observation... ;)




Aleksey wrote:
There are opinions here in favor of the view that puzzles should be available for other builders to make and sell, provided all kinds of proper credit is given to the creators. I am in favor of that as well.


Ok ok, I will put it this way. Although I disagree, if the majority agrees, I will also agree. I am pretty sure that I am not the only one who loves democracy here! :)
(My opinion is that the creator should decide for the copies, even though the creator's decision might not be respected outside the puzzle community - we don't live in a perfect world, but we can surely isolate those who want to discourage creators... always in my own humble opinion!!!)



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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2007 10:30 pm 
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My fear is for the future. I don't have the statistics but since I started my auctions there seems to be an ever increasing trend to copy. I am as surprised as anyone at the prices that my puzzles get. It's very natural and understandable that people will try and copy what I have done. That is why (despite objecting to it) I don't have bad feelings against those who do so. Perhaps in five years time eBay will have 50 knock off Golden Cubes every week for auction. When that happens I will go back to full time archaeology and hang up my plastic sheet and fast glass resin for good.
BTW I am capable of looking at this objectively and in a situation where person A offers to make a Tony Fisher puzzle for person B it is difficult for me to object to it. I do believe in freedom as much as possible and in that kind of situation my feelings would be, I'd rather it didn't happen but who am I to say it shouldn't. It's the whole eBay in front of my face thing that I don't like. I am sure we have all copied the odd CD now and again but we certainly don't do it under the artist's nose. In addition I will repeat what I said earlier about unowned puzzles. In my opinion no one has the right to claim any cuboid or obvious polyhedral transformation. This covers the majority of my puzzles.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 14, 2007 5:39 am 
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Tony, I appreciate very much your taking part in this discussion. I personally would hate your leaving the puzzling field for good. I would do anything to ensure it does not happen. I hope you realize that I continue with this discussion not to insult the original puzzle designers, but rather to better understand the motives and to make sure all that is clear to everyone. Even though I personally favor duplication of puzzles given all proper credit, I would rather that the puzzle designers were NOT discouraged.

Sure we live in real world, read - imperfect. I would love to know what it would be that you would agree to so that you continue designing new puzzles, yet trying to make your puzzles somewhat more available to puzzle lovers. If you'd rather not do that publicly, I would appreciate a PM message. I (and Pantazis) will leverage that later on.

My trouble is that my understanding is that with current awareness and technology puzzles will be duplicated more and more. I would like to see to it that puzzle designers still continue designing new puzzles. What are we to do to make sure that happens?

Now, Pantazis, no I do not want to limit this discussion to high-priced puzzles. Your case is perfectly good here as well. It happens so that I know markets where producing a puzzle is so much cheaper. Frankly I am not sure what to do in that case. Given the skill to string magics, anyone can duplicate your magics (by designing a look alike to your designs, as you do not explicitly provide the images to your magics). So it's even more complicated here...

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 14, 2007 7:06 pm 
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Hello everybody.

I followed the discussion here for a while and tried to understand the arguments. I see different ambitions.

There are established puzzle designers as Tony, who regularly come up with new ideas and build puzzles of high quality. They are highly motivated with their ideas and by the positive feedback they get from the community. Of course it counts, that there are only few people who are able to build such items. If anybody could do by using a 3D printer the artist work will be reduced to a computer construction issue without handicraft. The love to create something will get lost.

There are new puzzle designers, who want to prove their technical abilities. And of course it is a challenge to rebuild a famous puzzle. They show it to the community and some of the puzzles were sold on ebay.

There are the puzzle collectors with big budget, as Reeeech and me. In the discussion so far I feel, that we were a little bit under-represented (our fault!!). There may be different reasons to spend much money on puzzles:
that there are only few of them and to have an exclusive collection, that someone personally really WANTS to have it in an auction despite the price it gets (happened to me with the G.C. - oops), that you want to build a valuable collection, as others are collection stamps (definitely not my goal) or simply the wish to playwith them. Reeeech already mentioned it and I've the same opinion: it is always better to give the money to inventor and builder instead of anybody else. That's e.g. why I stopped bidding on the G.C. at the Nick Baxter auction some months ago.

There are the small budget collectors, who also would like to own a special design but don't have the money because the auctions always were raised to high prices. Of course they have the same interest in playing with the puzzles as the other collectors.

About one year ago when I realised that there is a puzzle community with a lot of ambitioned and gifted designers, I had the luck to win one of Tony's puzzles for a cheap price (compared to the prices today). I asked him, if he had any copyrights on his designs or how he ensured, that no-one else simply copies his designs and steals the idea. At that time he said, that the simply tries to be fast enough to come up with new designs to keep in front. But we both did not expect, that there are so many new puzzle designers coming up and that the number of copies of his puzzles would increase so much. Somewhere above in this thread he said, that he's on the one hand proud, that someone finds his designs interesting enough to copy them, on the other hand he's disappointed (does this describe it correctly?), that his work is simply copied, using his brainwork. Doing this for personal learning and improving skills is one thing, but making money of it, another one.

Because I can understand all groups I mentioned, my suggestion is, that the original designers should clearly say, which of their puzzles are free for copy and selling (!) and which are not. Personal copies without selling shouldn't be a problem. This kind of agreement will never be an insurance for a non-wanted copy, of course, but may help to setup a kind of ethical rule for this small community.

So the established builders could live with the decisions they made, the collectors, who want to keep a valuable collection, too. No one would blame a puzzle builder who copies a puzzle for himself, as long as he doesn't sell it. I see it as a motivation to come up with new designs instead. The only group who will be unhappy are the low budget buyers, because they will not get the chance to buy a special custom made puzzle. So the "star" builders should not be too restrictive with their designs. I don't think, that simply because a designer did not build and sell one of his puzzles for a longer time (e.g. five years) a puzzle gets the free to copy status. Also 'Mona Lisa' is not free for copy, although may people try to do.

I know that there are a lot more of really interesting designs some people made years ago and which I missed (e.g. all the Anthony Greenhill designs). I probably will never hold them in my hands. But that's life. I've to accept it and that's it, and so it is for all of us. I never saw a SuperX before until it was presented here in the forum. But if someone else has developed the idea and does not like it to be copied for sale, that's to be accepted. If Tony doesn't want to have his CC1 copied and sold then we both, sellers and buyers should respect this in future (including myself). If the original builder can be contacted, there's always the option to ask before. If this self-regulation doesn't work, builders will sooner or later will have "official" copyrights on their designs (which I assume is quite expensive and will probably kill the scene). For me, the puzzles are artwork, not just technical handicraft, so there is a personal brainwork coming with it, which should be respected not to be copied.

- Frank -


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 15, 2007 1:40 pm 
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I would have to agree with this. I don't think I would want to purchase a Golden Cube that wasn't made by Mr. Fisher. Of course those that aren't signed as the newer puzzles are signed wouldn't carry their value as those that are. Conversly, I think there are many mods out there that I would purchase from other builders such as 2x2x3, truncated cubes, overlapping, and the many variety of magics that are modded. Something such as a chaos cube I would probably want to try to build something similar but for my collection only. I have yet to win a Tony Fisher auction, but I've gotten over that. I did bid on the Nick Baxter auction for the GC and yes I would have rather bid on one from Mr. Fisher directly so as to fund future builds of course. Well I need to end this post, as I will be late for my Puzzle addiction meeting. :lol:


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 15, 2007 2:43 pm 
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I would buy a golden cube made by whomever, as long as it is cheap. :)


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 15, 2007 5:22 pm 
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@sexualRubiks:
Thanks for your agreement and your post.

@cuben00b:
That's what I meant with ethical rules. Sorry, please try to understand the difference between personal artwork and technical copies. The designer has a right on his mental work.

If it was something you need for your life to survive, I would agree. E.g. I have a different feeling about medicine for example, which is sold for high prices only to keep the shareholders lucky. But not for a puzzle somebody made for personal (!) attraction and fun for himself and others. This is not an industry but manufactural artwork.


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