If you're a Star Trek fan at all, you owe it to yourself to at least give Prelude to Axanar a watch: https://youtu.be/1W1_8IV8uhA
(And as an old Babylon 5 fan, I'm delighted they included a sly reference to that show in Prelude, too. See if you can catch it!)
I mean... I was just mad that it ended after only 20 mins... I was so hooked I wanted it to keep going.
How does a fan film get those actors? I mean, I can imagine that a lot of ST fans have money, but still.
Thanks for linking. That was awesome.
Also, "fan" might make you think they're amateurs. They're very much not; take a look at the cast and crew list.
So what exactly does qualify as one? just as long as you don't have the copyright I guess? I mean, at which point is "fan fiction" illegal? is the legality status correlated with the production values and budget?
Basically, all of the things Axanar is not. It's a quality low-budget production, but it's definitely not a fan film.
That's why fan films and series are likely to be shut down if they try and market them via Kickstarter or Patreon or a similar service or distribute them on a service where money is involved (like Steam, or as a published work on Amazon).
If they're trying to make money from this Star Trek film and don't have permission from the franchise owners, then it's not particularly surprising that they're being sued. It's a similar situation to a certain Zelda movie that got shut down when it tried to sell tickets to cinema screenings.
Same with Patreon. In the world of Nintendo fan works alone, both Star Fox the Animated Series and Super Mario Bros Z got their Patreon accounts suspended for trying to raise money.
Do I agree with? Not quite, but the general rule seems to be any exchange of money for any part of a fan work is problematic unless the original is in the public domain.
I can see why the studios are crapping themselves. No longer are they competing on mere copying, now they are competing on creativity!
Seriously, if fans can do this with Star Trek, I wonder if they should take the central precepts of Star Trek, make their own entirely seperate universe and to hell with it - the studios who refuse to continue much loved series can be cut out entirely and fans can make their own series.
In fact, they could make their own series but have a central authority to allow for basic continuity but maximise creativity. Now that would be remarkable.
The fans could find their own games and spinoffs pretty nicely too.
Star Wreck - In the Prikinning (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0472566/)
available for free here: https://archive.org/details/StarWreckInThePirkining
(These are the guys who then went on to do Iron Sky :D )
"2. Mr. Okrand himself has asserted that the Klingon language, tlhIngan Hol, was received by him from a captured Klingon named Maltz. See Okrand, Marc, The Klingon Dictionary (1985). Thus, Plaintiffs may be estopped from asserting otherwise for the purposes of this litigation. See Arica Inst., Inc. v. Palmer, 970 F.2d 1067, 1075 (2d Cir. 1992) (author who disavowed inventing enneagrams publicly cannot claim invention inconsistently to improve a litigation position)."
It's hard for me to wrap my head around it, but it's hilariously clever if I'm reading it right.
I'm pretty sure that he and the judge both know that Okrand's claim was a fiction/joke and that this isn't a serious legal notion to be ruled upon.
Prenda got smacked down pretty hard by a judge who decided to litter his judgement with Star Trek quotes.
36 English translation: “This will not stand, man.” Latin
transliteration: “not Qam ghu'vam, loD!” See also Lebowski,
Jeffrey., THE BIG LEBOWSKI, 1998.
Disclosure: I founded the LCS, directed our participation as amicus in this case, and am press contact for this issue. Marc Randazza wrote the awesome amicus brief (linked in OP) pro bono.
(ransomware, even - of the 'pay me $4k within 30 days or I'll disable your computer' variety...it doesn't get any more scummy)
In fact, I have found him to have nothing but contempt for copyright and patent trolls. Righthaven, in fact, was taken down in no small part due to his work.
(He and Ken White of Popehat are mentioned in the articles, and Marc's twitter feed mentions this breif)
I'm nosey and genuinely curious by the way, this is in no way internet snark.
What I can say is that he is a brilliant First Amendment lawyer and we are very satisfied with his services.
> Thus, this case should not be confused with the recent litigation over the Java computer language. As observed by the Federal Circuit, that case “was not a situation where Oracle was selecting among preordained names and phrases to create its packages.” Oracle Am., Inc. v. Google Inc., 750 F.3d 1339, 1361 (Fed. Cir. 2014) cert den’d 135 S. Ct. 2887 (U.S. 2015). Here, speakers of Klingon are limited to preordained words and syntax. (Page 12)
This is called the 'doctrine of merger', I believe (IANAL):
> Furthermore, the doctrine of merger provides that if an idea “can only be expressed in a limited number of ways,” those means of expression “cannot be protected, lest one author own the idea itself.” (page 9)
Since Klingon words are not an exact transliteration of english words (not a 1-to-1 translation), you can't express the same ideas in multiple ways; so if the language were to be copyrightable, only the person who owns the languages could express those ideas, which seems patently silly.
(My legal analysis isn't; so I'm probably off on exactly why; that's why I spent most of my time quoting from the brief).
Imagine two related suits filed within weeks of each other, A & B. B, the later-filed one, gets resolved quickly, for whatever reason, maybe it has a narrower focus. It seems the lawyers and judge in A, filed-earlier but still ongoing, could look to B for precedent since it is a relevant piece of settled law.
IANAL, and I can see arguments on both sides of the issue, depending on the exact matter under discussion. But logically, it seems that the judgement is what matters most for precedent, not when the suit was filed or when the incidents happened.
It's an interesting question though. I hope a lawyer can set us straight.
Really, really long nouns in sentences stated very indirectly.