Qs re launching new Linux game.

Qs re launching new Linux game.

Post by Bobby D. Bryan » Fri, 25 Feb 2000 04:00:00



I've been quietly hacking on a game that I hope to launch (in limping
form) under the GPL in several months, and I wonder if I could get some
advice/opinions on several matters.  (Sorry, it's nothing to brag about
right now; I just need to gather some info so I can have my ducks in a
row when/if ever the grand day does roll around.  And even then it will
only be part of a game: I will deliberately release it half baked in
hopes of attracting more cooks to work on it!)

 o Trademarks:

Should I try to trademark the title and splash page?  I am familiar with
the situation where some luser tried to trademark 'Linux' a couple of
years back and ended up settling out of court over it, and I don't see
how he possibly could have won the case.  But would it be better to get
the trademark in advance and avoid this kind of situation altogether?
What do other GPL-app developers usually do?

 o Copyrights:

I thought I read somewhere that the FSF recommends assigning an app's
copyright to them as a way of simplifying things for the trip to court
should a GPL violation ever occur (i.e., so they would need to round up
the lawyers rather than some penurious garage developer like me).
However, I did not find any advice to that effect at the FSF site.
(Indeed, one of their examples seemed to suggest waiving "any copyright
interest" in the product altogether.)  I have no particular interest in
exploiting the copyright, and indeed I hope that I can get lots of other
people to generate code that I couldn't reasonably claim a personal
copyright on anyway.  However, I do want to ensure that the copyright
(or lack thereof) does not become a liability or IP loophole in the
future.  So what do other GPL-app developers usually do?

 o Standard port number:

The game will use a socket-based client/server architecture, and I will
want to code in a default port number for the server to use.  It's
tempting to just grab a number (e.g., Freeciv + 1 = 5556), but I was
wondering whether there was a standard way of registering a claim on a
port so that I would not walk on some other existing app, nor others on
me in the future.  (I know a lot of the basic system app have claims on
low-numbered ports, but should games be registered?)

 o Distribution files:

I see the apparent standardization of files such as README, COPYING,
INSTALL, etc. in most of the GPL'd apps that I download.  Can you direct
me to a site that specifies the standards for what files should exist
and what they should contain?  Or is this just an unwritten "common law"
arrangement?

Any advice, opinions, links, etc. will be appreciated.  All the more so
for questions that I forgot to ask!

Bobby Bryant
Austin, Texas

 
 
 

Qs re launching new Linux game.

Post by John Hasle » Sat, 26 Feb 2000 04:00:00


Quote:Bobby D. Bryant writes:
> Should I try to trademark the title and splash page?

Are you going to use them to sell something?  If not, don't bother.
Trademarks lapse if you don't use them.

Quote:> I have no particular interest in exploiting the copyright,...

You'll have one anyway.  Copyright is compulsory and automatic.

Quote:> ...and indeed I hope that I can get lots of other people to generate code
> that I couldn't reasonably claim a personal copyright on anyway.

You can't claim copyright on their work, reasonably or otherwise.  Just
follow the FSF guidelines.  Don't worry about assigning the copyright to
anyone.
--
John Hasler

Dancing Horse Hill
Elmwood, Wisconsin

 
 
 

Qs re launching new Linux game.

Post by Bruno Barberi Gnecc » Sat, 26 Feb 2000 04:00:00



>  o Trademarks:

        You don't need to.

Quote:>  o Copyrights:
> copyright on anyway.  However, I do want to ensure that the copyright
> (or lack thereof) does not become a liability or IP loophole in the
> future.  So what do other GPL-app developers usually do?

        You have the copyright of the program, but this basically means
that you are the one that created it. Read the GPL.

Quote:>  o Standard port number:
> The game will use a socket-based client/server architecture, and I will
> want to code in a default port number for the server to use.  It's
> tempting to just grab a number (e.g., Freeciv + 1 = 5556), but I was
> wondering whether there was a standard way of registering a claim on a
> port so that I would not walk on some other existing app, nor others on
> me in the future.  (I know a lot of the basic system app have claims on
> low-numbered ports, but should games be registered?)

        Ahn, there are some lists on the web, but usually you just kick out
a number from your hat. The probability of another app using the same port
is really low. Remember to use port > 1024.

Quote:>  o Distribution files:
> I see the apparent standardization of files such as README, COPYING,
> INSTALL, etc. in most of the GPL'd apps that I download.  Can you direct
> me to a site that specifies the standards for what files should exist
> and what they should contain?  Or is this just an unwritten "common law"
> arrangement?

        There's no standard; it's only a tacit agreement. I think I read
something in a HOWTO about these files. It's either Software-Building-HOWTO
or Software-Release-Practice-HOWTO. Use it as general guideline.

--

http://www.geocities.com/RodeoDrive/1980/

 
 
 

Qs re launching new Linux game.

Post by Victor Wagn » Sun, 27 Feb 2000 04:00:00



: I've been quietly hacking on a game that I hope to launch (in limping
: form) under the GPL in several months, and I wonder if I could get some
: advice/opinions on several matters.  (Sorry, it's nothing to brag about
: right now; I just need to gather some info so I can have my ducks in a
: row when/if ever the grand day does roll around.  And even then it will
: only be part of a game: I will deliberately release it half baked in
: hopes of attracting more cooks to work on it!)

:  o Trademarks:

: Should I try to trademark the title and splash page?  I am familiar with
: the situation where some luser tried to trademark 'Linux' a couple of
: years back and ended up settling out of court over it, and I don't see
: how he possibly could have won the case.  But would it be better to get
: the trademark in advance and avoid this kind of situation altogether?
: What do other GPL-app developers usually do?

I'll recommend you register domain in .org or .com first, and trademark
second. Or some *squatters would steal your domain.

It has happened with our product - we begin to register domains about
half a year later than we've first mentioned product name in press.
We got domain in .ru, but .com appears to be registered two days later
our first announcement and don't have any real site within it.
(but it was commercial product, not GPL one).

But really, you should bother with trademarks only if you are about to
conquer the world (it seams that problems with Linux trademark began
only when it was clear that Linux does something like that).

:  o Copyrights:

: I thought I read somewhere that the FSF recommends assigning an app's
: copyright to them as a way of simplifying things for the trip to court
: should a GPL violation ever occur (i.e., so they would need to round up
: the lawyers rather than some penurious garage developer like me).
: However, I did not find any advice to that effect at the FSF site.

Don't do it. It means that you are giving all your rights up to Richard
Stallman. He is very respected person, but it doesn't mean that it have
to own copyright to every freeware program in the world. Better to keep
copyright to yourself. Especially if you are going to conquer the world.
This idea was introduced when there was almost no open-source movement
in its present form, and all GNU software was seen as component of
future GNU-system. If GNU system (HURD) is closer and closer to
existence, majority of freedom-lovers now use another opensource system
- Linux. Neither Linus, nor BSD autgors assign their copyrights to FSF.

:  o Standard port number:

: The game will use a socket-based client/server architecture, and I will
: want to code in a default port number for the server to use.  It's
: tempting to just grab a number (e.g., Freeciv + 1 = 5556), but I was
: wondering whether there was a standard way of registering a claim on a
: port so that I would not walk on some other existing app, nor others on
: me in the future.  (I know a lot of the basic system app have claims on
: low-numbered ports, but should games be registered?)

There is IANA - Internet assigned numbers authority - organisation which
is responsible to that. But it seems that most things just grab number
an use it. And if app becomes a widely used and its protocols are
standartized in the internet RFC, then IANA takes care of it.

:  o Distribution files:

: I see the apparent standardization of files such as README, COPYING,
: INSTALL, etc. in most of the GPL'd apps that I download.  Can you direct
: me to a site that specifies the standards for what files should exist
: and what they should contain?  Or is this just an unwritten "common law"
: arrangement?

Start with INFO documetnation on your system. There should be something
about writing GNU software.  May be in autoconf docs, may be in GCC
ones.

--
Perhaps they will have to outlaw sending random lists of words.  fee fie
foe foo [sic]

 
 
 

Qs re launching new Linux game.

Post by Bobby D. Bryan » Tue, 29 Feb 2000 04:00:00



> Any advice, opinions, links, etc. will be appreciated.  All the more so
> for questions that I forgot to ask!

Just writing to say thanks to all those who replied:

    Thanks!

Bobby Bryant
Austin, Texas

 
 
 

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http://www.merlin-huff.org/czlinux/phpBB2/index.php

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