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Mindfield

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About Mindfield

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    Quadrunner
  • Birthday 09/26/1971

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    Giggity
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    Male
  • Location
    Ontario,Canada
  • Interests
    Emulation, music, art, collecting classic game stuff, games, collecting more classic game stuff.iphone apps

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  1. Sega won the initial case, but Accolade won on appeal, with the court ruling that the percentage of copyright code used was insignificant (20-25 bytes of copyrighted code used in a work consisting of as much as 1,500,000 bytes) and thus Accolade's works were overwhelmingly original content, and that disassembly of a functional copyrighted work for the purpose of gaining access to it in order to develop software for it was fair use. https://www.copyright.gov/fair-use/summaries/segaenters-accolade-9thcir1992.pdf Bear in mind however that all of this was before the DMCA.
  2. I didn't know about the SMS thing. There's simply no way in hell you can ever call yourself a retro gamer that goes back to a console released in 1982 if you've never even heard of Sega's first commercially successful console that came after. (I'd excuse lack of knowledge about their SG-1000/SC-3000, those are fairly obscure, but the SMS was a global success. Not on the level of the NES, obviously, but it carved out more than enough market share that you'd have to have lived under a rock buried under other rocks not to have heard of it.) Yeah, sorry, not buying that he's a fan of anything that isn't green and fungible.
  3. Yes, exactly. That's why I said he went way overboard, and his response to everything that happened after he went after the page has been abhorrent. As for why this is a problem suddenly now, we can only speculate, but I'd say the pending release of their Rainbow Brite games is a significant factor. It's possible they didn't know about the homebrew scene (or did not realize it was using the Coleco logo) back when the Flashback was released, or for that matter when the Chameleon was a thing. It's doubtful, but given that it's probably agreed that Cardillo et. al. are in this for the money, not because they truly give a shit about the community, it may be that they just never really looked into the community at large any deeper than was needed to get a scan scan of what their target market might look like. Hard to say -- both sketchiness and ignorance are equally believable answers when it comes to Cardillo.
  4. Just to make a point here, the issue here is that a company is obligated to protect their trademarks, because if they don't actively pursue infringements, they will lose them. It doesn't really matter the degree to which a trademark is being infringed, if a company knows of an infringement being sold commercially, they are required to pursue action to see that such activity is stopped. If they don't, and it can be shown that the company knew of the infringement and failed take action, the USPTO can nullify their trademark claim. Most companies will simply issue a cease-and-desist order, and usually that does the trick, as most infringers know they're infringing and will stop once they're caught because it's expensive to fight things further, especially if they have no legal case for their usage of it (eg. fair use, parody). Not to defend the BS that Cardillo has been doing, but it's likely Cardillo, in his vigorous pursuit to protect the Coleco trademark just to make sure he can be shown to be making a serious effort should the USPTO call it into question, went well overboard and reacted abhorrently to the response. Again, I am not defending what Chris has done here, but I wanted to point out that at the core here (which has been deeply buried under mountains of Chris' bullshit) is the protection of a trademark as is legally required in order for Coleco to keep it. Whether Coleco's claim is legit in the first place given the specimen they provided to obtain it is another matter.
  5. No. Ben doesn't produce anything like that commercially. He has done onesies and twosies for a few people on request for a fairly high price ($300-400+ or so for one of his custom portables) and with a lead time of several months, but it's a fun hobby for him, and a learning exercise, not an enterprise. So yes, the specimen Coleco provided is completely bogus.
  6. Fair enough. I'm sure it's possible to obtain some proof of this. But I think the larger point here is that we shouldn't likewise be making accusations without our own proof to refute his. By all means ask -- Chris, or a more reliable source -- but if we flat out make the assertion without the evidence to back it up, then we're not really being any better than he is.
  7. Chris, I'm trying to be as impartial as I can be here. I am neither a Colecovision developer nor do I own one at this moment (much as I miss it) and only play games through emulators these days. One day I may get back into collecting. But that is neither here nor there. You seem to spend a great deal of time dancing around the meat of the issues here, getting bogged down in the personal attacks (which I will address a bit later) without actually addressing the biggest issues here. To whit: - You made TOS violation claims against images of games on the FB fan page. This was just wrong. Period. End of story. Holding your retractions for ransom pending agreement to any terms whatsoever is dumb. You were in the wrong here, and regardless of anything else, you should retract them wholesale and without reservation or qualification. Full stop. This issue is separate and unrelated to anything else. Colecovision Fan has no stake in anything posted there, and you have no say in what gets posted there. If you mistakenly thought otherwise, that's on you, but the absolute moment you were shown to be incorrect in your assumptions or the information you were given, you should have retracted your claims in their entirety. - You want to control what software gets released for the ColecoVision. You can't. Full stop. That is not within your purview whatsoever. Stop trying. If you have a problem with unlicensed ports, take that up with the developers or report them to the IP holders whose copyrights and/or trademarks they violated. But unless they are violating Coleco's IP (and to the best of my knowledge Coleco Holdings do not have the rights to any of the original Coleco IP) or trademarks (where you likely do, in fact, have some say) then you have no standing to take any legal action yourself. - You want to control what software gets publicized by forums, blogs, and fan sites. You can't. Full stop. See above. If you want editorial control, start your own site. - You want to control what people say about you and Coleco/Coleco Holdings/RWB and where. You can't. Full stop. Unless it legally qualifies as slander or libel (and there is a very specific definition for each here), then you have no right to ask anyone to retract or take down anything said about you or Coleco/Coleco Holdings/RWB. You can ask, but nobody has to comply, and in the asking is the risk of damage to your brand's reputation. Clearly we're past that now, however. - You want to control who uses the Coleco and ColecoVision logos. That, at least, is within your right, presuming your trademarks are legit, but only within the scope of protecting your trademark's specific third-party usage (its font and style) as it pertains to the potential for causing confusion in the marketplace and who gets to license its official use and under what terms. These are your only bargaining chips, and you seem to feel they give you more power to do more things than they do. Protect your trademark in ways the law says you should using common sense (go after the actual people directly responsible for infringement, not those giving them airtime). Give licenses to those you wish and dictate the terms of its use. Try to do anything outside of these and you're just stepping on your own dick -- and by what's happened up to this point, your dick has seen more foot traffic than Times Square. (Note: This is a quasi-humorous metaphor that's probably only funny to me, not a personal attack. For some reason I feel the need to spell out that I don't literally think your genitals are a busy trestle bridge.) - You associate with someone who is known to the very community you hope to eventually market things to, to be a complete scammer. This is bad for your image. And don't try and deflect by accusing others of being guilty of associating with those who are similarly "bad" -- this is nothing to do with them. This is about you and the brand you represent. Like it or not, a brand is only as good as the people behind it, even those who are not on the payroll. This reflects on your brand. Keep that in mind. - You make all of this personal. Don't. You're representing a brand. For God's sake, man, act like an adult professional. Ignore the personal attacks. Address issues about the brand in a professional, level-headed manner. Everything else is just noise that is irrelevant to the brand. - You play the victim. Nobody has victimized you except maybe use the Coleco and ColecoVision logos where they were not licensed to do so. That is, and should always be, the beginning, middle, and end of your issue here, and they should be taken up with the parties directly involved. Full stop. Any damage done to the Coleco brand as it exists today was instigated by you. It all started with you. You are not the victim. I think you owe CVF some retractions and at least a few people an apology. Everyone else, Ad hominems, physical threats (however hyperbolic or indirect), parody, and such are cathartic -- I get it. It's fun. It's entertaining. Bit it's not helping. Given Chris' behaviour, we should be holding ourselves to higher standards than that, at least while the issue is ongoing. Let's be the bigger people here. I know we've tried to be, and Chris hasn't exactly done anything to raise the level if discourse here in an effort to help make a bad situation better. But I think -- and I know this is going to be a terribly unpopular opinion -- that some few here owe Chris an apology, at least for accusing him of illegally selling bootlegs where he's explained that what he was doing was legit. Yes, Chris has been in the wrong here on numerous fronts, and he needs to address that if he wants to have any hope in hell of salvaging any shreds of his brand's reputation, but not everyone here has been in the right, either. I love this community - the CV community and AA at large. I've been hanging around these forums for a long-ass time, though I haven't been around here for the past number of years for having dropped out of collecting. Still, I hate to see shit like this crop up when it really, really didn't need to get this bad. Yes, Chris started it, and frankly, Chris needs to be the one to finish it, hopefully without taking a weed whacker to the remaining shreds of Coleco's rep, but some here also need to big it up and offer an apology for false accusations and personal attacks as well. We're better than that. We've been here long before he was, and we'll be here long after he's gone. But if this is to go away without leaving too much lingering anger and frustration, those in the wrong need to own it and apologise for it and move on. Chris can go and do whatever it is Chris is supposed to be doing, and we can go back to enjoying the hell out of the wicked-awesome things being done for long-dead systems that we love keeping alive for our own pleasure.
  8. I'm doing pretty good, thanks! I've been gone from here a good long time now. Got out of collecting, though still have a core Atari 2600 system with my favourite games and some accessories. Sadly I just don't really have the time to pull it out and play with it. I do log time in emulators occasionally though. I got sucked back in by this thread from Facebook though, and ... well, dammit, I miss AA. So I came back.
  9. This is a stupid concept. I'd have mad, mad respect for any company that got in front of a mistake, admitted it, and apologized, all of its own volition, before the media got wind of it and made them look like they're only sorry because they're getting bad publicity. It's the ones who deflect and evade that I hate most and tend to avoid.
  10. What a motley assortment. Aside from Coleco, we have an absorbed wireless company nobody has any fond memories of, a 70s/80s brand of coffee nobody wanted to fill to the rim anymore, a 90s Benneton-wannabe fashion brand, an middling 90s electronics company which was absorbed by Sony, then died when Sony's rebranding failed hard, a 70s/80s brand of pantyhose of all damn things (do women still wear these?), an early 2000s PDA/smartphone brand that got absorbed by Palm, and the late 80s gormless bull terrier mascot for Budweiser that MADD accused Anheuser-Busch of using to market the beer to kids. For the most part, properties that died for a reason and should stay dead.
  11. Wait. Hold on. You would, for example, allow a developer of homebrew games to use the Coleco mark if they sell you the game at cost? So the developer makes no money? Or you get permission to reproduce the games yourself, again, giving the developer no money? I know homebrewing is a labour of love, but this is just balls-out arrogant and stupid. What possible incentive would any developer have to do any business with you at all? Do you really think this is the way to get back into the community's good graces? I think the appropriate response here is, "Dig UP, stupid!"
  12. Unless you can prove prior art or obvious functionality -- and if you have the means and time to deal with it in court.
  13. I'm not fluent in copyright law or anything, and it can be incredibly complicated to navigate, but from what I understand (and I may be wrong here), there are multiple things at play here: 1. The copyright of the original work and whether the remake qualifies as a derivative work irrespective of other copyrightable or trademarkable considerations. 2. The trade dress of the work being copied/ported. This is your "likeness" or "look and feel" situation and falls in to the category of a type of intellectual property. This includes specific, copyrighted characters (such as your Mickey Mouse example). 3. The nature of the work's usage. (Private, personal use only, public exhibition (as art), commercial sale, etc.) 4. The name of the work (trademarked names, et al.) 5. The nature of the license(s) to use any of the above. For 1, a port would be considered derivative as the code is going to be significantly different (i.e. it is unique to the platform it is being ported to since it will not run on any other platform). For 2, see 5. For 3, if you're just making a drawing for yourself or to show friends and family, that is not a violation of any copyrights or trademarks. Public exhibition and commercial sale are a different matter and require a license for the specific purpose. There are exceptions (particularly with respect to art), such as fair use laws for the purpose of criticism or parody, however, but that can be a fine line to walk. For example, the image that was ubiquitous years ago of Calvin (of Calvin and Hobbes) pissing on the Ford logo (and similar uses) did not qualify as fair use, and Bill Watterson was notoriously against them. 4 is obvious. 5 is about how the issue is licensed. An example given in a previous message is Atari licensing the Pac Man brand for the Atari 2600. The nature of the license was that Atari was given a license specifically to bring Pac Man to their home systems (Atari 2600, and later, the 5200 and 8-bit computers). They did not have a license to publish it anywhere else or merchandise it in any other way. So licenses can be specific, it just depends on what the developer works out with the license holder. This is all as I understand it, and again, IANAL etc. so I may be wrong in some of this.
  14. So I've been following this thread and the one on Facebook. I've been trying to remain as impartial as I could, despite my own personal attachment to ColecoVision. I wanted to give Coleco Holdings the benefit of the doubt and think that maybe this was a mistake on their part -- a dumb error or miscommunication or something. But the more I read and find out, the more I feel like Coleco Holdings is just being a trademark squatter (the trademark equivalent of a patent troll) and trying to appear arrogantly magnanimous in its "generous" support for the homebrew community and its "looking the other way" when it sees homebrewers engage in what they see as trademark or copyright violations. To whit, they have some points with regard to the use of the Coleco name on homebrews that are clearly remakes of IP that the developer did not secure the rights to. Don't get me wrong, I love that these things exist, and had I still a ColecoVision and the money, I'd be buying this stuff up, because it's awesome. But I am under no delusion that many of those arcade-to-CV ports are using the IP without permission. So there is a legal point to be made there. But the more I read, the more I believe that that isn't really what this is about. Occam's Razor tells me that this seems to be more about Coleco Holdings coming out of the woodwork after all this time and trying to assert its legal muscle where, by all apparent accounts, it has no standing. (I came to this lack of legal standing position early on when I was shown what they submitted as their specimen to secure the word mark on the ColecoVision brand.) I don't begrudge a company its right to protect its marks or its IP, that's sort of what it has to do if it wants to retain the exclusive rights to use them as they see fit, and to prevent others from using it in ways they did not approve. But their intent to use was filed nearly ten years ago, and they haven't really used it. Also, RWA's methods smack of trademark squatting with many other trademarks -- they engage in things similar to the way patent trolls do, but without the same degree of strong-arming that should be considered extortion. Worse, they want to try to control the content that homebrewers bring to the console whose trademark they debatably own. That right there is unpolished bullshit for any number of reasons. So yeah, like pretty much everyone else here, if they were to actually make use of the ColecoVision name in a future product, they won't be able to count on me to support them in their endeavors. Screw them and the troll they rode in on.
  15. From what I understand, the first (abandoned) one is a code 5, known as a design mark, which limits the registrant to owning that specific combination of characters in that specific style, format, and typeface. A code 4, known as a standard character mark or word mark, is more broad, and encompasses the brand name itself in any style, format, or typeface, thus the specimen need only be generic (i.e. just the name to be trademarked), not the specific style or format or typeface that is intended to be used. In other words, the first in that image only trademarks that logo in that specific style, not the ColecoVision brand used in any other form, while the latter trademarks the ColecoVision brand in any form that it takes.
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