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Vault of Puppets Lawsuit

Discussion in 'Puppet News' started by CB Boy, Nov 2, 2008.

  1. CoOKiE

    CoOKiE Member

    Where did i say that i was on their side? I mentioned that i clearly would not like my work being ripped off as well.

    I said that there are people, like myself, who wish to own a muppet puppet replica... and he gave people the chance to.

    "do you think any pro is going to make a custom made original creation for less?"

    And THAT is EXACLTY why i complained. Its not the real thing. Fozzie and Miss Piggy look horrible. So, yea. I'm complaining. Thethe money he was askin for was crazy.

    I'd pay that if they were film used puppets... cuz the price of that would be even higher. But for a knock off? You're going to tell me that his prices were fair for the crappy job? I think not.
  2. muppetperson

    muppetperson Well-Known Member

    He is still selling his original creations via ebay.
  3. MGov

    MGov New Member

    Obviously you've never had the F.B.I. visit your place of employment to investigate missing pre-release copies of a major summer blockbuster.
  4. Buck-Beaver

    Buck-Beaver Active Member

    This is an excellent point, but YouTube is a unique case because it has struck deals with most content providers that compensate them for uploaded content. For example, most of the record labels allows their music to appear in user-created videos on YouTube if they are non-commercial. And if you upload a music video from, say, Shakira a box will appear beside the video saying something like "This video contains content from Shakira's channel" and an ad will run, the profits from which are split between YouTube and Shakira's label.

    I'm not sure what Disney's deal with YouTube is, but as RavageFrackle says they are aggressively using YouTube to promote the puppets so they are probably allowing the uploading (for now anyway) because it helps them.

    Actually, the FBI gets deeply involved with copyright infringement cases.
  5. Luke

    Luke Active Member

    So these individuals have been named, and puppeteering is a small world - so anyone know them? Have they worked for Henson or Puppetheap?

    I always thought it was a single guy, never realised it was a team of people
  6. muppetperson

    muppetperson Well-Known Member

    Could it be the same guy with different alias's.He changes his ebay ID frequently.
  7. MGov

    MGov New Member

    Hey, just realized, I've been to jury duty at the same court house the suit has been filed in.
  8. rtgentry

    rtgentry Member

    lol but you are too biased to be chosen for that case!
  9. Geeze ravage, I thought we weren't going to have this debate again and I come back a week or two later and it's right where we started. It doesn't have to get so passionate, but one of the problems I have with the logic here is that muppet replicas are bad, muppet videos on youtube are bad but stilll allowed, and trading of copyrighted Muppet MP3s on muppetcentral.com is not discouraged or even mentioned, but popular. Muppet replicas are illegal, I get it, but keep your passion objective at least.

  10. frogboy4

    frogboy4 Inactive Member

    Yes, but the FBI doesn't sit around trolling YouTube and Amazon etc. The copyright holder must locate the infringement come to them and it is a process that only/usually those with deep pockets can afford to pursue. That was my point. If it's Joe Shmoe's registered and copyrighted indie short film that is being ripped off it will be harder to "make a federal case" out of it. However, if it's anything Lucas or Coppola it usually goes away swiftly. It isn't the prestige as much as the money behind it.

    The point I was making can be summed up in this random example:
    Let’s say music from your favorite recording artist is being heavily sampled in a television commercial without permission or payment. If the artist turns a blind eye to that enough times it weakens his case down the line if he finally decides to object. It shouldn’t but it does. That’s why it is important for every artist to be their own watchdog and it helps to have a team of lawyers. Then, and only then, a case is filed with the FBI. The recording artist or his representatives would not just call up FBI headquarters and tell them to turn on Channel 6.
  11. ravagefrackle

    ravagefrackle New Member

    ? not sure what your refereing to, im not debating you or any one in particular, just staing opinions.

    and yes i am passionate about the muppet knock-offs, people like them give legitimate designers a bad name.
    a good friend of mine and collegue was undersuspicion because he happend to share the same first name as one of the defendents in this case,

    and while he did nothing wrong or illegal, when u have people hiding in the shadows with only rumors to go on it can affect the innocent just as much as the guilty.

    as for the Youtube stuff again yes its wrong but the parent companies are the ones who need to police it, feel free to report that stuff to disneys anti piracy group as well. But like Buck andf i said its very possible they are using youtube to gauge the populairity of the muppet brand ,

    and yes MP# trading is illegal as well, but since i do not trade MP3's its not something i put much thought into.
  12. Conor IX

    Conor IX New Member

    I had a look on the guys myspace page and after seeing the replicas again, they're not as good as I remember them. The origional characters are pretty cool though.

    What are your thoughts on copping the muppet style with your own puppets and then selling them? Obviously the issue at hand here is direct infringement of copyrighted characters, but do we sometimes rely too much on the muppets creative well? I know that no matter what kind of style hand/rod puppet you make, people are going to make the link. But it seems like a lot of puppet makers kind of treat making puppets like they're coming up with new characters (or variants of muppet achetypes[scientist/frog/weird names you'd expect to hear on a muppet type show.etc]) for the muppet show.

    P.S. Apologies if this has been said before. And I'm certainly not trying to detract the efforts of some of the brilliant work some of the posters on the forum do.
  13. MGov

    MGov New Member

    Objective passion?

    Kind of an oxymoron, don't ya' think?
  14. Yeah, I thought about that today, passion was the wrong word - and ravage obviously can be more passionate about the replicas than mp3s as he makes great puppets. I was talking about the logic in general and double standard, not ravage's logic / passion or other wrong word, ha.
  15. Buck-Beaver

    Buck-Beaver Active Member

    I get your point about the FBI. Usually you hear about them getting involved in raiding places where they mass produce or import large amounts of bootleg stuff.

    This is actually a legal myth. It gets repeated on the internet all the time (and sometimes in the media) but it's just not true.

    That might be so in the case of certain types of trademarks, but not copyright. You cannot loose a copyright simply because you don't sue someone who infringes it.
  16. frogboy4

    frogboy4 Inactive Member

    I didn't say lose, just *weaken* or a copyright holder could have*less* of a case against an offender's *past deeds* if others were permitted usage during that time without legal consent or legal recourse. The person or company holding the copyright is the chief enforcer. A copyright holder can't permit rampant free illegal usage for a long period of time to just wake up one day and say..."Hey, you hundreds of unlicensed people out there using my stuff - I'm going to sue you all!" and expect to win. They really just wouldn't have much of a leg to stand on. Many people don't understand how the legal process really works. It can easily get messy and strangely applied.

    A few years ago Tivo got their lawyers involved for using their name in media to represent all DVR service. They felt it could weaken their brand name and the public would consider all DVR devices to be Tivos. That is a lesson Xerox learned the hard way.
  17. KermieBaby47

    KermieBaby47 Well-Known Member

    Yikes! I'm glad that the decorations I did were just at home for my new baby boy.

    As long as I don't charge people to come into the nursery I should be just fine. :D
  18. staceyrebecca

    staceyrebecca Member

    I'll admit I was sad to see the company join Etsy. There's nothing etsy can do unless the copyright holder contacts them, but it looks as though their shop is empty at the moment.

    Happy me.
  19. MGov

    MGov New Member

    And this would be an example of protecting a trademark from trademark infringement. This is not an example of copyright infringement.
  20. Buck-Beaver

    Buck-Beaver Active Member

    Except, they can do that and there are many cases where copyright holders have.

    Although I'm not a lawyer, I do understand how the legal process works and deal with a lot of copyright issues professionally. We can argue legal hypotheticals back and forth for years, but - allowing for some kind extraordinary case I can't even imagine right now - copyright is effectively never lost until it expires. You have to explicitly give it away. That's the only way you can loose a copyright.

    Under U.S. law, the only way to transfer ownership of a copyright is through a written agreement signed by the copyright owner acknowledging that they are transferring their ownership and/or waiving their rights.

    As for Xerox/TiVo, As McGov pointed out they are examples of trademarks, not copyrights. The two are often confused.


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