Difference between revisions of "Star Control Intellectual Property"

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==Copyright==
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===Source Code and PC Assets===
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Paul Reiche III and Fred Ford own the copyright on the Star Control universe and the source code of the PC version of the Star Control 2 game.
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This was kept intentionally out of the sale of Toys for Bob to Activision, so that Paul and Fred could one day create a new game based on it.
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<!-- I think the below is wrong; see Talk — SvdB
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Star Control 2 was originally authored and copyrighted by Paul Reiche III and Fred Ford, and licensed to [[Accolade]] when the PC version was published.  In the early 2000's, that license ended, permitted Paul and Fred to re-license the source code under the GPL, and the music and artwork under a Creative Commons license.  Their ownership of the copyright was later confirmed in a 2001 agreement with [[Atari]] (who had acquired Accolade's IP), which allowed Atari to publish the game on [http://www.gog.com Good Old Games].
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===3DO Assets===
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The 3DO port was published by [http://www.crystald.com Crystal Dynamics], who retains the copyright to the manual and CGI cutscenes added to that version.
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==Trademark==
 
The name "Star Control" is a registered trademark in the United States. It is registered for use with "computer game software, and manuals supplied as a unit therewith."
 
The name "Star Control" is a registered trademark in the United States. It is registered for use with "computer game software, and manuals supplied as a unit therewith."
  
It was originally registered by [[Accolade]], in 1997. Accolade has since been bought by [[Infogrames]] (in 1999), which in turn changed its name to [[Atari]] in 2003.
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It was originally registered by Accolade, in 1997. Accolade has since been bought by [[Infogrames]] (in 1999), which in turn changed its name to [[Atari]] in 2003.
  
 
While [[Toys For Bob]] itself holds the rights to the [[Star Control]] games it created, Atari remains the owner of the Star Control trademark. It is because of this that the Open Source release of [[Star Control II]] is named [[The Ur-Quan Masters]], which was the subtitle to the original release.
 
While [[Toys For Bob]] itself holds the rights to the [[Star Control]] games it created, Atari remains the owner of the Star Control trademark. It is because of this that the Open Source release of [[Star Control II]] is named [[The Ur-Quan Masters]], which was the subtitle to the original release.
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It is likely that this would not be enough if the trademark were to be challenged.  See [http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/USCODE-2009-title15/html/USCODE-2009-title15-chap22-subchapIII-sec1127.htm 15 USC §1127]:
 
It is likely that this would not be enough if the trademark were to be challenged.  See [http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/USCODE-2009-title15/html/USCODE-2009-title15-chap22-subchapIII-sec1127.htm 15 USC §1127]:
 
:''A mark shall be deemed to be ''abandoned'' [...] When its use has been discontinued with intent not to resume such use. Intent not to resume may be inferred from circumstances. Nonuse for 3 consecutive years shall be prima facie evidence of abandonment. ''Use'' of a mark means the bona fide use of such mark made in the ordinary course of trade, and not made merely to reserve a right in a mark.''
 
:''A mark shall be deemed to be ''abandoned'' [...] When its use has been discontinued with intent not to resume such use. Intent not to resume may be inferred from circumstances. Nonuse for 3 consecutive years shall be prima facie evidence of abandonment. ''Use'' of a mark means the bona fide use of such mark made in the ordinary course of trade, and not made merely to reserve a right in a mark.''
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However, in April 2011, Atari put the Star Control games up for sale on Good Old Games.  This could be considered sufficient use in commerce to re-secure the trademark.
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On July 24, 2013, [http://stardock.com Stardock Entertainment] purchased Atari's Star Control IP assets.
  
 
=== External Links ===
 
=== External Links ===
 
*[http://tarr.uspto.gov/servlet/tarr?regser=serial&entry=75095591 Entry at the United States Patent and Trademark Office]
 
*[http://tarr.uspto.gov/servlet/tarr?regser=serial&entry=75095591 Entry at the United States Patent and Trademark Office]
 
*[http://tmportal.uspto.gov/external/portal/tow?details=&SELECT=US+Serial+No&TEXT=75095591 Trademark registration documents]
 
*[http://tmportal.uspto.gov/external/portal/tow?details=&SELECT=US+Serial+No&TEXT=75095591 Trademark registration documents]
 
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*[http://www.gog.com/gamecard/star_control_1_2 Good Old Games Star Control Page].
 
[[Category:About the Star Control series]]
 
[[Category:About the Star Control series]]

Latest revision as of 10:54, 28 July 2013

Copyright[edit]

Source Code and PC Assets[edit]

Paul Reiche III and Fred Ford own the copyright on the Star Control universe and the source code of the PC version of the Star Control 2 game. This was kept intentionally out of the sale of Toys for Bob to Activision, so that Paul and Fred could one day create a new game based on it.

3DO Assets[edit]

The 3DO port was published by Crystal Dynamics, who retains the copyright to the manual and CGI cutscenes added to that version.

Trademark[edit]

The name "Star Control" is a registered trademark in the United States. It is registered for use with "computer game software, and manuals supplied as a unit therewith."

It was originally registered by Accolade, in 1997. Accolade has since been bought by Infogrames (in 1999), which in turn changed its name to Atari in 2003.

While Toys For Bob itself holds the rights to the Star Control games it created, Atari remains the owner of the Star Control trademark. It is because of this that the Open Source release of Star Control II is named The Ur-Quan Masters, which was the subtitle to the original release.

In September 2007, Atari has renewed the registration of the Star Control trademark. To do this, they needed to show recent use of the trademark in commerce. In their application they did this by including graphics of a simple Flash game assumed to be created just days earlier.

It is likely that this would not be enough if the trademark were to be challenged. See 15 USC §1127:

A mark shall be deemed to be abandoned [...] When its use has been discontinued with intent not to resume such use. Intent not to resume may be inferred from circumstances. Nonuse for 3 consecutive years shall be prima facie evidence of abandonment. Use of a mark means the bona fide use of such mark made in the ordinary course of trade, and not made merely to reserve a right in a mark.

However, in April 2011, Atari put the Star Control games up for sale on Good Old Games. This could be considered sufficient use in commerce to re-secure the trademark.

On July 24, 2013, Stardock Entertainment purchased Atari's Star Control IP assets.

External Links[edit]