Is there a way to copyright your demo?

I want to keep my game safe. How can I be assured that no one will take it as their own before it’s published?
If I have anyone join me in its creation, how can I be sure they won’t steal it?

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If you strictly control the beta and who you allow to join, I imagine that is the best you can do …

For actual copywriting, I’d refer you to an IP lawyer for legal advice.

Edit — Plagiarism is already something addressed in the forum rules.

If you see plagiarism, flag it and let the forum staff deal with it.

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Copyright is automatic, so if someone steals your work even before it’s released, you can sue them. Though the odds of that are extremely low.

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In theory yes, and if someone’s paraphasing or copying your work outright it’s easy to spot and defend. But if someone decides to take your ideas and make it into their own story, it becomes a lot more grey, and if it is put up on a completely different site it’d be just about impossible to get it taken down in some cases (if nothing else the legal costs make it just about prohibitive to try unless the site owner voluntarily removes it.) There were complaints going around at one of the big writing sites at one stage about people plagerising work word for word without even trying to cover it up, and there’s been problems on amazon where books have had stuff lifted from them and if any copyright problems occur, they just try to blame their ghostwriters for doing it. Doesn’t happen very often so I wouldn’t be super stressed about it, but potentially it could. I agree with Eiwynn- if you have any worries, control the beta or only release the game shortly before you’re due to test it if you’re really worried.

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hehe…yeah . No, it is not . Sorry, but it really aint .

I’ve seen peoples getting their mods…Stolen . And there is nothing they can do, save to Sue . But if the person is in another country ? yeah…Good luck with that .

remember thats a two street, the person is probably thinking the same thing .

First, I suffer paranoia . So, for me…if I were to do something like that . I wouldnt go for just anyone . Know them, know where they live…what they do…know their name not just screen name . Why? cose…even if said person live in Alaska…and rob me from my story…the last thing I do…is get me a ticket and go punch them in the face .

There are Tools online to copyright your stuff, but mostly its country by country . Some arent covered .

So use some commun sense, dont team up with just anyone from the wide world .

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But…it really is tho…?

what is ?

Copy right really is automatic? At least it is in the US. Not sure what country the original poster is from.

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You said that not meh lol

You just posted this.

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yeah I did . You said it was automatic, I said it wasn’t . I’ve seen peoples getting their mod stolen . And we aren’t talking about ‘reading words and writing them down’ but physical Files…with pictures and codes . All taken away .

If copyright was So automatic…as soon as its online, the rules are gone .

This isn’t an opinion. Someone stealing something doesn’t mean it’s not copyrighted. It means someone stole it.

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yeah but…what does the copyright actually DO? nothing .

Though this is a possible scenario, it’s very unlikely to happen especially since content of demo tends to change a lot. Someone might steal your demo, but once you do an update, they’ll have to steal it again to keep their data relevant. What I’m trying to say: it’s unlikely to have your work stolen that you can’t publish it under your name.

This is more tricky due to the nature of multi-authored work itself. You’d need to set an agreement, even write a contract or something, so there’d be a solid foundation should any legal cases are coming up (I’m not a lawyer or such, but my Pap is so I learned a bit and two).

But don’t be discouraged, it’s something achievable. Lost in the Pages is a published HG.

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TBH, I’d be less worried about a co-author taking off with your ideas (especially in this community where a co-authored project would be known to the forum and HG/COG is the only outlet to commercially publish a CSGame) and more worried about picking a reliable co-author who isn’t going to disappear half way through writing it and make it impossible for you to publish as all authors need to sign off on the HG contract.

(But Szaal is right there are 2 multi-author forum constructed games- Pages and Starship, and a couple more that have been written by pairs of people that I’m guessing either know each other IRL or via long term presence on the forums so it is do-able.)

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Well, the possibility of your work getting the same feel of another person is very high to coincidental especially if both works are catering to the same genre. That does not mean someone copied/stole your work thou.

If you have someone else join you in the creative process, then set an agreement. No need for the whole black and white mambo jambo law abiding paper unless you guys what to do that sort of thing.

In the copyright issue, it depends from country to country. In the UK you don’t have to register your creative work or pay a fee to protect it with copyright. Your work is protected by law the minute you create it. Other countries meh. You can also do the whole “Poor man’s copyright” but it is not that binding as a registered work.

I had two of my works are registered for the heck of it and it was a fun experience. It was easy to do and not that expensive as most think. In US dollars it cost $10 for both works and it is registered so till the end of my miserable life my work is mine to abuse lols.

If you’re worried about your work getting copied/stole just have a controlled set of testers and have an agreement with your co-partners. I mean no need to jump with the whole black and white papers if you can just have a talk and agree with it. Less heart ache for you in the long run.

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You can’t be, sadly–but the benefits of sharing it widely are greater than the risk of it being stolen. I tested the first Choice of Rebels game on the forums as I wrote it, from 2013-17. That strengthened its quality tremendously. While no one stole the idea during the years it was in demo form, it was pirated from five minutes after its release, as pretty much all IP is these days. But it’s sold well, and I believe part of its success stemmed from the improvements made in forum consultation.

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As someone said for more eloquently than I’m about to: Obscurity is a far greater threat to a hitherto unknown author than piracy.

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If someone copies your words and attempts to publish them, an intellectual property lawyer can help you take appropriate legal action.

As for the stealing of ideas… that’s the last thing I would worry about. Ideas aren’t as valuable as people seem to think.

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I really don’t know the law on the topic very well. Or really I just don’t know much about the law at all beyond how to get out of a speeding ticket.

The only thing I can really contribute is that when it comes to publishing a traditional novel every publisher I spoke to told me to not put any part of my book anywhere on the internet. This was a few years ago, but they told me plainly that they would not publish anything that had been publicly posted.

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