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Old 2007-12-28, 09:20 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally posted by TFVanguard
Umm... exactly what qualifies here as copyright infringement? The product itself isn't being sold by anyone involved in the movie - it just happens to have been there as an in-joke. What's the copyrighted item redistribution here? The phrase 'bee-otch'?

Since it's a pun on 'Bumblebee', this is an open-and-shut case... it's called 'parody'.
No. Actually it was being sold as movie tie-in merchandize, particulalry as a promotional item, as evidenced in this thread over at the Padded Cell message board—http://p206.ezboard.com/fthepaddedce...cID=4896.topic The thread starter purchased one of the movie-tie-in airfresheners. Therefore, yes, her copyrights are clearly being infringed upon.
 
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Old 2007-12-28, 09:47 PM   #22
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EDIT: 12-24-07 ... after receiving many email queries about this, from people following this post from other TF forums, I have to make a correction. It was not purchased at Target as I initially believed. Rather, it was a promotional item from the cinemas and is no longer available. You can get a similar version on Amazon, but without the Autobot logo on the back.
Hmm, sounds like a freebie there, rather than sold. Anyone seen any being sold by anyone else (that's a genuine question there)? I mean, copyright's being violated, yep, got that (though I do think there must be a loophole there for Paramount to have bothered), but where's the competition that's costing her sales? The only facts I've seen show that they featured the thing in the film without asking her (which happens with millions of things in many films every year... I dunno, would they have asked the manufacturers of Reggie's specs whether it was okay to wear them?), and they gave some away as promotional gifts (which is costing her a little bit of money, which she'll have easily made back from the exposure... "consistent seller" can mean anything, I consistently sell knackered Gobots on ebay but it's not exactly a reliable income).

Don't get me wrong, the woman's been wronged a little here. But she's also being an over-reacting cow too - she could be satisfied with just making a killing from her design being featured, but no, she wants a lump-sum payout.
 
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Old 2007-12-28, 09:57 PM   #23
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The other issue which is costing her money is the fact that pople are claiming that she is copying the movie. As such, they aren't buying her product. That costs her money from lost sales.
 

Last edited by Tramp; 2007-12-28 at 10:05 PM.
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Old 2007-12-28, 10:25 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally posted by Tramp
No. Actually it was being sold as movie tie-in merchandize, particulalry as a promotional item, as evidenced in this thread over at the Padded Cell message board—http://p206.ezboard.com/fthepaddedce...cID=4896.topic The thread starter purchased one of the movie-tie-in airfresheners. Therefore, yes, her copyrights are clearly being infringed upon.
Actually, he did NOT purchase it, and got it as a freebie from the movie theater. Is it a violation? Not sure, anyone got the original to do a comparison?

I still say that since it's a very obvious pun, it's going to be very hard for her to successfully sue on this. Parody is a very easy protection in the US, after all.

These suits are also all about PR, and she looks like a git. I'm reasonably certain that she could have worked out SOMETHING with Dreamworks a long time ago. (That little piece had been in the original preview trailers... funny she didn't care until the movie and DVD sales were shown to be so high.)
 
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Old 2007-12-28, 10:42 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally posted by TFVanguard
Actually, he did NOT purchase it, and got it as a freebie from the movie theater. Is it a violation? Not sure, anyone got the original to do a comparison?
http://www.merch-bot.com/index.php?m...oducts_id=1561

googling "bee-otch air freshener", the top 6-or-so links advertise it as being just like the one bumblebee uses in the movie. Make of that what you will.


edit : http://www.yujean.com/home/yuj/smart...en_in_the.html
 

Last edited by slartibartfast; 2007-12-28 at 10:48 PM.
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Old 2007-12-28, 10:43 PM   #26
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The "pun" is on Bumblebee, not on the product. The movie is not parodying her product at all. They used her product in a manner to pass it off as their own, removing all connections to her, and relaeasing it to the public as a "promotional item" without proper recognition going to the originator of the design.
 
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Old 2007-12-28, 10:46 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally posted by slartibartfast
http://www.merch-bot.com/index.php?m...oducts_id=1561

googling "bee-otch air freshener", the top 6-or-so links advertise it as being just like the one bumblebee uses in the movie. Make of that what you will.
Take a closer look. I'll place the two side by side, and you should see a clear difference—


Look under the word, "BEE-OTCH" Notice what is missing on the one from the movie? The original desing has small type under the word which is the Copyright information. The one from the movie is miising that information.
 

Last edited by Tramp; 2007-12-28 at 11:01 PM.
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Old 2007-12-28, 10:58 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally posted by Tramp
The other issue which is costing her money is the fact that pople are claiming that she is copying the movie. As such, they aren't buying her product. That costs her money from lost sales.
Who are they buying it off instead? Does she have any actual proof of lost sales? Why would people have any problem with her copying the product? Transformers fans practically keep some bootleggers in business.

The Google results probably prove that there's a "ly low" omitted from the "consistent sales" statement. How many people were genuinely aware of the thing before the film?

I don't see how she can sue for $850,000. Paramount aren't making money from it (even if they are in violation of copyright); she certainly wouldn't be making best part of a million from the item, especially if it hadn't been in the film. As has been said, it's odd that it's taken ~6 months for her to come out of the woodwork too.

And I'll say it once again; films regularly feature items in tiny appearances that have not been cleared for copyright (posters on walls, CD & DVD cases and so on). Focus on the promotional thing, because her trying to call the film for giving her free advertising (unless other parties are infringing on her copyright [but aren't multi-national film studios and thus aren't getting served] she's still the only person making money off the thing) is moronic nuisance-suit bull****. It's like The Strokes suing for them getting an advert on Sam's chest for the whole film just when everyone had nicely repressed their existance and just thought they were a Television tribute band...
 
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Old 2007-12-28, 11:10 PM   #29
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It wasn't a "tiny" appearance. It appeared throughout the movie while Bumblebee was in his '76 Camero form. Nearly every shot we had of his interior showed it. It wasn't just a one-shot appearance. Secondly, the promotional items alone are in violation of copyrights. Even if Dreamworks didn't sell them, she lost money from their distribution. Every one distributed was one less of hers sold. She was never compensated for it in any way. It caused her negative publicity because other people thought she was copying the movie. That hurts her credibility and makes people not want to buy her product. Also, just because it took six months to get the suit into court does not mean that she waited six months to file the suit. It is more likely that she had been seeing lawyers and working with them to prepare the suit through gathering evidence, researching law, etc. That all takes time.
 
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Old 2007-12-28, 11:20 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally posted by Tramp
It wasn't a "tiny" appearance. It appeared throughout the movie while Bumblebee was in his '76 Camero form.
Even if it's in every shot it can still be a tiny appearance. It's hardly noticeable after the first shot it appears in in Bobby Bolivia's place. It's less noticeable than myriad other items in the film that probably weren't cleared - you think John Ford phoned Smith & Wesson for every ****ing film he did?

Quote:
Originally posted by Tramp
Secondly, the promotional items alone are in violation of copyrights.
You'll note that I actually said that. Actually, you probably won't. In fact, you didn't. But then you've got form on that.

Quote:
Originally posted by Tramp
Even if Dreamworks didn't sell them, she lost money from their distribution. Every one distributed was one less of hers sold. She was never compensated for it in any way.
That's a crock of **** and you know it. How many times have you been given something free that you were actually going to spend money on anyway? As I said above (a whole post up, but I forgot who I was talking to), let's try to shed some bold on the matter, YES IT IS COPYRIGHT VIOLATION BUT THE LOST SALES ANGLE IS SPURIOUS NONSENSE (went for caps there as well, let me know if it helped you to read all the words). That's RIAA logic you're using.

Quote:
It caused her negative publicity because other people thought she was copying the movie. That hurts her credibility and makes people not want to buy her product.
Any facts to back that up yet, or just the word of the woman who claims the super-hit movie that exposes her product (and apparently gives it a pivotal supporting role... I personally didn't really notice it after the car yard, what with paying attention to all the talking and moving things in the film that were interesting) to an audience that would otherwise be blissfully unaware it existed? There's no sales figures to back that up at all; there's no proof anyone cares what the source of the things are beyond what she's saying to get best part of a million out of Paramount.
 
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Old 2007-12-28, 11:25 PM   #31
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mind you, 850 thousand might just be to cover her legal fees.
 
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Old 2007-12-28, 11:26 PM   #32
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Cliffjumper, why shouldn't we take her word on it? How would you feel to have a product you created and have a big corportation blatantly rip you off? Would you like it? I highly doubt it. You would probably go after them too. I certainly know I would. She has every right to go after Dreamworks for violating her copyrights and costing her money. Ther is a huge difference between a trivial suit over nothing and trying to get proper compensation and recognition because someone blatantly ripped you off through copyright infringement. She deserves every penny she can get!
 
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Old 2007-12-28, 11:36 PM   #33
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Why shouldn't we take her word on it? Because when you make an accusation, you better back it up. We operate on a presumption of innocence, after all. She needs to show her damages (for real, with sales expectations), and the fact that she did originate the design. She also has to prove malicious intent and that there wasn't something already negotiated, which seems to be Dreamwave's defense.
 
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Old 2007-12-28, 11:43 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally posted by TFVanguard
Umm... exactly what qualifies here as copyright infringement? The product itself isn't being sold by anyone involved in the movie
Promotional use would qualify -- you can't run off a bunch of Mickey ears to give as a freebie incentive for a film with mice in it unless you're the corporation with a cryogenically-frozen* nazi-curious ex-boss...

*Yes, I know that bit's probably urban myth, but it's funnier.
 
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Old 2007-12-28, 11:44 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally posted by TFVanguard
Why shouldn't we take her word on it? Because when you make an accusation, you better back it up. We operate on a presumption of innocence, after all. She needs to show her damages (for real, with sales expectations), and the fact that she did originate the design. She also has to prove malicious intent and that there wasn't something already negotiated, which seems to be Dreamwave's defense.
She can show that evidence in court, and that is the appropriate place to do so. What do you think she has been doing the past six months? Collecting evidence. She already has the proof that she originated the design. The original airfresheners have copyright information with her name on it printed on them under the word "BEE-OTCH" dating back to 2002. On top of that, she also has the original artwork and filed papers from the Copyright office. So, yes, there is clear evidence of her originating the idea. As for Dreamworks defense, we don't know what their defense is, since they have made no statements whatsoever regarding their defense. Dreamworks is clearly in the wrong here.
 
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Old 2007-12-28, 11:47 PM   #36
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Quote:
Originally posted by Denyer
Promotional use would qualify -- you can't run off a bunch of Mickey ears to give as a freebie incentive for a film with mice in it unless you're the corporation with a cryogenically-frozen nazi-curious ex-boss...
Exactly. In order for Dreamworks to legally produce those promotional items, they would have had to get a license from her to produce them, and they would have to be printed with the appropriate copyright information on them. Neither of that has occured. They were produced without proper license and they lack proper copyright information. That is a clear and blatant copyright infringement and loss of potential sales to the owner of the copyright.
 
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Old 2007-12-28, 11:53 PM   #37
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She'd struggle to prove lost sales, but doesn't have to -- DW derived commercial value from the design.
 
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Old 2007-12-28, 11:56 PM   #38
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Precisely. And that is what places them clearly in the wrong and her deserving of every penny she can get.
 
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Old 2007-12-28, 11:56 PM   #39
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Look, Tramp, you ****ing plum, stop just skipping over the bits of people's posts you don't have an answer to. I mean, half the time you can actually post sensibly, but this whole mindless evasion thing is only making you look like a damn plank. No-one's disputing that she designed the thing, or that if Paramount distributed it without some sort of arrangement it's infringement on her design. So shut up about that and start debating the same bloody points as everyone else. Otherwise it just looks like you realise it's all bull**** and are just repeating yourself out of sheer stupidity.

- Where is her proof that she's lost money because of it?

- Where is the proof people are shunning her merchandise because they feel she's cashing in on the film? This isn't one of those "Getaway recoloured as Bumblebee" deals; there is no Hasbro-sanctioned Bee-otch air freshener competing with the thing and making it look like a knock-off... People either buy hers or they somehow live without a Bee-otch air freshener.

Without any data to back that up, the first point can be written off as (at best) hopeful expectation, and the second as anecdotal.

What, do you just believe the first thing you hear about everything? And then it's up to everything else to disprove that? Thank Christ people like you aren't allowed to run anything important in the real world...

She could very well be totally in the right and be being totally bum-raped by the corporation, but not all of us are jumping up and down at the injustice of it all until we've heard a few more facts. As it stands, her compensation claim is ludicrous.
 
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Old 2007-12-29, 12:07 AM   #40
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Cliffjumper. I'm not skipping over anything. First off, we aren't the jury or the court. As such, we are not privy to all of the information, nor should we be. However, from the infoprmation we do have, She is clearly well within her rights to sue Dreamworks for what they did. They are in the wrong here, not her. As Denyer himself put it, she doesn't need to show figures showing loss of income. The very fact that Dreamworks got commercial value from it by using it to promote the movie is enough. The very fact that she only found out about it after the fact makes it even worse. I take her side on this because I am an artist myself with my own ideas and designs and would certainly not want what happened to her to happen to me.
 
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