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Not sure if this is good or bad (Sgt Mark Patreon in question)

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On 10/4/2017 at 9:32 PM, fraggle said:

That's a common misconception. The source code is available under terms that entirely permit commercial use. But the source code license is largely irrelevant to the discussion.


What matters is the whole of the rest of it - the IWAD files are copyrighted, the monsters, story and so on are copyrighted. And the name "Doom" is trademarked. The fact that they've released the source code doesn't mean they've given away ownership of the game. And the fact that they own it means that they can exert a lot of legal control over anything fans do with it. The truth is, all of us who make our levels, mods, source ports, etc. do so at their pleasure and if they wanted to just end the Doom modding scene tomorrow they probably could. They don't because they have no reason to (it benefits them to have passionate fans of their games, obviously) but if you start making money off their work then you put yourself on shaky grounds.


By the way, this is part of why I've put so much effort into Freedoom over the years and tried to organise people to build a foundation for ourselves that we, the Doom community, collectively control, so our artistic endeavours aren't subject to the whims of a corporation that can shut down all the things we love doing. This is the essence of the free software movement, but it's hard to get these ideas across to people, I guess because they're somehow abstract and difficult to understand until the real cease & desist order drops through your letterbox. That and most of the literature about free software (like the page I just linked to) is just really, really bad. But think about the difference between owning and renting the house you live in; one makes you more free as a person, even if your landlord tells you that you don't have to pay rent. 


Linguica thinks that even Freedoom is on shaky ground; maybe he's right, I don't know and I don't want to even speculate. If you care about this issue and you have Doom modding skills then I still think contributing to it is the most constructive, positive thing you can do. There's still plenty of room for improvement, so come and help out.

Thanks for this post. I think it's important for this message to be made much louder and more clear. I admit, I've wondered about the shaky ground issue myself. I never really put it together that FD was actually a push towards protecting things like modding. I think this message should be on the home page, except that it might ruffle the wrong feathers. Maybe it's best as is. But I must say that this post enlightened me, so thanks for that, and thanks for what you do.

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Yes... that's so true.


It's a pity when a community spends all of this huge amount of effort in something that doesn't really belongs to the community itself, but that is instead some company's IP. It's like they get workers for free.


Doom doesn't even belong to its own creators. It's not John Romero's IP, instead it's owned by Zenimax media. A company that just buys property as an investment, expecting to make profit from it, just like any other company would (not saying that Zenimax is particuarly evil or anything).


In my opinion, only when something is public domain or openly licensed does it really deserve the title of "Classic". Like Lovecraft novels, classical music, ...and I'm hoping in about 14 years J.R.R. Tolkien works will start becoming public domain too, if no company f*cks it up.


It's a good thing the Doom engine is GPL, but it's a pity the assets are not.

Edited by Ferk

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Didn't 90s Id Software take the position that they didn't want people making money off DOOM mods?


Also: I knew from the first post that they just wanted him to change the name. That's what happened with DOOMRL.

Edited by dugan

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On 10/5/2017 at 1:09 AM, Gez said:

Didn't he make a "Brutal Doom Starter Kit" based off Freedoom so he had an IWAD to bundle with BD, but BD was still using the edited Doom sprites rather than sprites based on Freedoom's assets so the whole thing was questionable?

Just an idea... would there be interest for an indiegogo campaign to make a version of BD with proper Freedoom compatible GPL assets?

I'd back it up, specially if it also involves revamping some of the animations and assets from Freedoom.

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Part of what makes this complicated is the question, is Mark making money off a company's IP, or is he being "gifted" for spending an unusual amount of time on modding?

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