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My TDM mod and Patreon


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#1 MirceaKitsune

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Posted 28 September 2017 - 10:50 AM

It's taken me several months to decide if and how I would discuss this topic. I know from previous experiences that it's a sensitive subject to touch on, yet I have to as I otherwise cannot decide on how to even setup my schedule. I expect a few disgruntled rants to be directed toward me for bringing this up, but I'm hopeful folks can read everything carefully and judge my stance fairly.

 

I'd like to begin by saying that I'm not here to convince people to agree with me. I only ask that you read this with an open mind and try to see things from my perspective as well. I have been a part of the TDM community for 3 years now, and this projects is by far one of my top favorite FOSS games in existence, hence why I wish to make good content for it and push the existing base even further!

 

So let's begin: As many of you may know from random mentions I made in other threads, I'm working on a mod for TheDarkMod which will offer a futuristic cyberpunk theme over the vanilla steampunk setup. It will come as a series of pk4 files, which will run on top of the same code base but feature an entirely unique set of assets and definitions. All of the assets are going to be GPL compatible, similarly to how Xonotic is fully GPL licensed including both the game code and assets. Already I have ported all characters from Xonotic as well as several texture packages as an early experiment.

 

Unfortunately I have barely been able to work on this mod during the past one year since I've started the whole thing. This is primarily because I'm busy working on other projects, consisting of other open-source games as well as 3D animations, which I make as part of my Patreon. Right now I rely exclusively on Patreon to survive, as it's currently me and my mother's only source of income. As such I need to prioritize projects I can present on it, so that those who support me see that I'm working on something and keep me from ending up on the streets.

 

TheDarkMod has always been a complicated situation from this perspective, due the fact that most of its assets are licensed under a non-commercial license (CC-BY-NC-SA) as well as the community having a strong non-commercial culture. A while ago I already asked if it's okay to develop missions as part of a Patreon, and have gotten a solid "no" for an answer... despite the question referring strictly to original maps and not in way involving the redistribution of any vanilla assets. As creating fan missions is not such an endeavor that I absolutely need to put them on Patreon, I'm respecting that wish to this day, and continuing to work on fan missions without making any paid posts nor requesting any support on their behalf. With a mod of this proportions however, the situation is a lot more difficult. As such I'm constrained to consider whether a common ground can be found between the non-commercial culture of TDM, and my need to be able to use Patreon to some extent in order to create this project; I really want to make it happen and share with you something I've dreamed of creating for years now, while I explicitly wish to use TDM as a basis since its engine and gamecode are perfect for this... however I can't do it with my hands completely tied behind my back in being able to receive donations for my own original work!

 

The technical details are finicky: My mod is obviously comprised entirely of assets taken from other free sources, such as Xonotic or BlendSwap or OpenGameArt. Not a single asset that will be included with it is non-commercial, since like I said the mod's assets will be strictly GPL compatible (including CC0 / Public Domain and CC-BY). The idTech 4 engine as well as the original game code of TheDarkMod are themselves GPL licensed, which offers a nice fit and should ideally close the chain in packaging a fully non-proprietary project. So what is the problem? Well at least for a long time, my mod will rely on existing assets from TDM for functionality. None of those assets will ever be redistributed with it, nor are TDM's original assets part of the end goal to begin with... however the mod's original definitions will have to inherit them until replacements can be found for each and every one. This primarily affects entity definitions, character animations, character voices, and potentially a few other things... my mod needs to link to those so that its own original characters can move around and speak. Some people seem to consider that if you create your own character or use a freely licensed one, however that character inherits base character definitions / animations / voices from TDM at runtime, using the character you've created in a commercial fashion counts as breaching the non-commercial terms of the assets bundled with TDM... despite none of TDM's assets actually being included with it and only being referenced by a simple word in your own definition. It's this misunderstanding that I'm hoping can be cleared up.

 

For clarification: My mod is and always will be publicly available, and is already being hosted on Gitlab where people can try the early items I've finished implementing. It will never be sold nor ever hidden behind a paywall! When I say "using Patreon for my mod", I'm strictly referring to being allowed to make special announcements about it to Patrons of certain tiers, and at most offer sneak previews of what I'm working on to exclusive patrons. It's as simple as that... just announcements and occasional exclusive content, so people know they're also keeping me going so I can work on creating this! It's arguable whether I'm even getting close to doing anything that counts as "using TheDarkMod's assets commercially", as this could only be the case through an arguable chain of causality... yet I know some people care for this sort of thing, and as such I have do discuss it and see how far I can go.

 

In the end I will have to settle for one of 3 options in how I approach the problem. My possibilities right now are the following:

  1. I am not allowed to even talk about my works for TheDarkMod on Patreon, to the point where I can't even let my followers know what I'm working on and what progress I have made. As Patreon is also used as a blog (similarly to Tumblr, Livejournal, so on) this would include me having to self-censor on the website over the very subject of TDM. This is a rather silly worst case scenario, and unless the TDM community actively hates me I won't be asked to go this far... it would also keep this mod nearly impossible to develop.
  2. I am allowed to talk about my works for TheDarkMod on Patreon, but only in free posts and not as an exclusive means of trying to attract new supporters. Basically I'm telling my patrons "I am also working on this project that I'm sharing with the world", while making it clear that it's a free project and I'm not asking them to pay me for it although I am asking them to bare with me dedicating less time to other projects they do pay me for. This option seems very reasonable, and I'm hoping there are no issues in me settling for it as a worst case scenario.
  3. I am allowed to talk about my works for TheDarkMod on Patreon, as well as offer early sneak peaks or bits of exclusive content (eg: screenshots or unlisted Youtube videos). This is what I do for all my projects, and it allows me to make them a focus without making the project less free or accessible. It's the ideal option, however if the community has a strong opinion against me doing this I can refrain from it... this would however allow me to dedicate much more time to the mod.

Please let me know which of these approaches you'd be most comfortable with me choosing. Like I said, I understand and respect the feelings of the community toward commercial use, but at the same time I ask that you see things from my perspective too and judge fairly before answering; This isn't me trying to be an ass for no reason and expand my Patreon through TDM... heck I've modded so many projects that I have an abundance to pick from if need be. It's about me wanting to create a large and unique project that runs on top of base TDM, which I've dreamed of making for many years and am also certain the TDM community will greatly enjoy once it gets there. I only ask not to be limited more than I need to be, in order to make it easier for me to make this project happen for everyone. Thank you for reading this and offering your insight.



#2 Sotha

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Posted 28 September 2017 - 12:57 PM

I am not talking for the team, just for myself.

 

Time is flying forward and we nowadays live in the era of youtube artists and sharing economy and that kind of stuff.

 

If everything is made with CC license and is free to everyone to see and use without restrictions, why should it be forbidden for the person making the work to have a donate button somewhere.

Everyone gets the content, free, and if someone really wants to donate, why not let them? Everyone benefits, nobody suffers.

 

Perhaps someone else will present a convincing view why it would be overwhelmingly detrimental. I do not see it at this time.

 

Putting stuff behind a paywall is a different matter, and that is a big oh-god-no-please for me.


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#3 Springheel

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Posted 28 September 2017 - 01:52 PM

Maybe all the TDM devs and mappers should have donate buttons?  How about a kickstarter campaign for my next module set?


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#4 MirceaKitsune

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Posted 28 September 2017 - 03:07 PM

Maybe all the TDM devs and mappers should have donate buttons?  How about a kickstarter campaign for my next module set?

 

If it was my call, I legitimately wouldn't be opposed to that and would actually encourage it! Your assets are some of the best stuff that was ever made for TDM, and of all artists you're among the first who I'd normally encourage to get a Patreon where they receive support for their work. It's of course even more noble that you did all this work even without such... sadly my current situation and comparatively limited skills make that much harder.

 

Of course if you were to do that right now, you'd likely run into the same controversy I'm trying to clear up in this thread. Especially since your assets are for vanilla TDM so it's even closer to home, compared to making an independent mod like I'm doing here. I imagine the current situation might be limiting to several artists overall.

 

I wouldn't advice a kickstarter campaign though, as that would still have the component of "if I don't get enough money it won't happen" attached to it. I'm not a fan of paywalls either as Sotha very nicely put it, to the point where I don't even do the whole "low-res version for free, high-res version for patrons" thing when it comes to finished artwork. Patreon's system encourages people to keep going regardless of whether they're receiving more or less support at different time periods, which is what I plan to do with my project as well (funding won't determine whether I still want to do it, however it can greatly boost my ability to do it).



#5 freyk

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Posted 28 September 2017 - 03:24 PM

I would like to see (y)our (and mine) scifi project to succeed.
So I have no problem, when your referring to your own patreon site and/or having a donate-button.

But i have a problem with people, who don't respect the cc-nc / cc-by and getting paid/famous on someones back.
(only exception for hosting the data)
If you dont agree to this, i advice you to switch to an other (d3/other) engine.

I got an job in IT and in my spare time i help the TDM-community voluntary.
I get "paid" by getting technical experience on several subjects from this (TDM) project and show this on my portfolio/resume.
 
 
I dont not know the internal things of TDM.
Is the a-i of the actors in TDM gpl or nc licensed?

Edited by freyk, 28 September 2017 - 04:01 PM.


#6 VanishedOne

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Posted 28 September 2017 - 03:36 PM

If a mission produced with this monetary patronage features changes in the player's class, will people who responded here get a small share?


Edited by VanishedOne, 28 September 2017 - 03:38 PM.

Some things I'm repeatedly thinking about...

- louder scream when you're dying


#7 MirceaKitsune

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Posted 28 September 2017 - 03:56 PM

I would like to see my/our scifi project to succeed.

So I have no problem, when your referring to your patreon site.

But i have a problem with people who dont respect the noncommercial (cc-nc) / creatorname license (nc-by), and getting paid over someones back.

 

I dont not know the internal things of tdm.

Is the a-i of the actors in TDM gpl or nc licensed? 

 

Both the idTech 4 engine as well as the TDM gamecode / scripts (including AI) are GPL licensed. The NC license applies to other assets such as models, textures, sounds, music, animations, definitions.

 

Obviously I would not do something that breaches the license of any asset, that would be really wrong and rude. This is a gray(ish) area though, which is why I'm trying to find out what works and what doesn't.

 

Suppose I've created an original TDM character as part of my Patreon: I'm advertising my own original asset on the site, nothing that contains any bit or piece from any single NC asset. Sure, people are likely to place it on a map that's textured with NC textures and so on... however that's not my concern, the pk4 of my character itself has nothing to do with it. Now if my character offered everything it needed to function out-of-the-box, and came packaged with a full set of animations and voice packs and a new base character class, there wouldn't be even this gray and everything would be perfect! The only problem here is this: Until one day someone made new animations and voices for my character, its definition must reference those vanilla assets in order to work... else you'd see it silently moving around like a statue in the default T pose :P Now that is of course a circumstantial thing, my character itself does nothing but to include one line of text saying "inherit this class from TDM"... technically it doesn't breach any sort of licensing terms, and TDM was actually in this situation itself before idTech 4 became open (a mod for the proprietary game Doom 3). I'm not sure how much even this little might not sit well with some people, so overall I'm just trying to be sure.

 

If a mission produced with this monetary patronage features changes in the player's class, will people who responded here get a small share?

 

My mod aims to be fully GPL licensed, just like the Xonotic project. If I get enough help to do this at some point, there will be replacements for all vanilla definitions so that a runtime dependency on them no longer exists. However this will have to come later, with a replacement for the default player class being planned a bit sooner on. Overall it will be like a whole new game except with the same mechanics.

 

I'm not sure exactly what you meant there. The general rule however will be that people can do what they wish with FM's that rely on the mod's assets. I imagine that maps with mixed vanilla + mod assets may exist, but I will only endorse making FM's with either just TDM's assets (in which case they shouldn't be used commercially) or my mod's assets (in which case you're free to do anything you please with them).


Edited by MirceaKitsune, 28 September 2017 - 03:59 PM.


#8 Abusimplea

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Posted 28 September 2017 - 06:51 PM

id software did not prevent anyone from reselling their engine. With the GPL they even chose a license, that explicitly allows that (LICENSE.txt in TDM folder, line 292).

So i assume, that id software is fine with other people using their engine for getting money for food and rent.



#9 grayman

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Posted 28 September 2017 - 08:23 PM

*
POPULAR

Let's look at your request from the perspective of "assets and code".

 

I have contributed very few assets to TDM.

 

I have, however, contributed vast amounts of code and scripts and gui changes.

 

Your proposal is to replace all TDM assets with your own, or with assets that don't prevent you from charging for them if they're used in your game.

 

But assets are useless without code to use them. For example, changing an npc's def file and model and animations and sounds and attachments and skins still requires all the support scripts and code to understand those bits and pieces and know when and how to use them.

 

I would argue that unless you're also replacing all the npc scripting and code work, you have only addressed half the npc's "totality".

 

By accepting $ for the "new npc", you are accepting $ for both the assets and the code that brings that npc to life.

 

I don't think it's fair to me that you rely on my free contributions to make a living.

 

Now, multiply me by a couple dozen people who've worked on the code/scripts/gui/support side of the house over the past 10 years. (The "non-asset" side.)

 

Now try to gauge how much each of these people has contributed.

 

$ has always been a sticking point with this group because it's impossible to reach a fair and equitable distribution of it.

 

Several years ago, greebo famously commented that if anyone started paying $ for TDM, that he was claiming a "75% share". Now, that might have been tongue-in-cheek, but it reflects the problem we all have with a monetized project. His claim gives you an idea of how much time he put into the project to make it what it is today.

 

Several of us have discussed a donation mechanism for TDM, with the funds going toward things we have to pay for: servers, website, etc. The cost for those has been born by a small handful of the group over the years. But that's the only area we are willing to accept donations for.

 

--------------------------------

 

In short, if you need a stream of income from your work modding games, you should abandon TDM as a platform and pick one that has already been monetized.


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#10 Obsttorte

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Posted 29 September 2017 - 01:47 AM

I second what grayman says.


FM's: Builder Roads, Old Habits, Old Habits Rebuild
WIP's: Several. Although after playing Thief 4 I really wanna make a city mission.
Mapping and Scripting: Apples and Peaches
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End of shameless self promotion.

#11 Judith

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Posted 29 September 2017 - 02:30 AM

You can easily get Unreal 4 or Unity and do the same. Although I'd probably make some quality content and media first, so people can get excited about the stuff I make. Then I'd think about a Donate button.



#12 Destined

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Posted 29 September 2017 - 02:51 AM

I also agree with grayman. TDM was a huge undertaking that was achieved by a lot of people and earning money with anything based on its code is earning money with their work. By the way: As you said yourself, you have not had a lot of time to work on the sci-fi mod lately and thus, much of the recent work was done by freyk. I find it quite bold to claim it as "your" mod, when another person has spent a lot of time and effort to make it happen. That does not mean that it is not your (singular) mod, but I think you should give credit where credit is due and at least start calling it your (plural, as in freyk's and your (singular)) mod, if you plan on using any stuff freyk has created (which, as it currently seems to me, you would have to do).



#13 freyk

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Posted 29 September 2017 - 03:44 AM

For the most things, I only gathered (and edited) existing assets and respected their licenses.

(and the gpl'ed ones i found, was minimal quality or didnt publisched the source)

He can use them, but most of them are cc-nc.


Edited by freyk, 29 September 2017 - 04:24 AM.


#14 Destined

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Posted 29 September 2017 - 05:53 AM

I thought you also created the GUI and other stuff? Maybe I just misremembered. If you don't mind it's all the better :)



#15 freyk

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Posted 29 September 2017 - 06:56 AM

And those new guis, like the password lock and ingame object menu? It uses code from Arx fatalis, an nc-project.



#16 MirceaKitsune

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Posted 29 September 2017 - 07:00 AM

Okay... lots of things to address here:

 

@ Grayman: Yes, my mod would still be using the TDM game code. The scripts are themselves GPL licensed, same as the idTech 4 engine... thankfully they aren't CC-BY-NC-SA like the assets. I don't know why the developers decided to make this exception only for the scripts, but it does (at least license wise) mean that this bit is okay. Even so the code is in the same situation as the assets: I'm not touching or redistributing it, I'm only redistributing original definitions and scripts that work on top of it and reference its functions at runtime. Now of course I am not here to say "haha I found a way around the non-commercial license", I would have not made a thread asking how people felt if I was an asshole like that; I'm saying "okay, so I may receive donations for my mod which will temporarily use base assets and permanently use the game code, and I know people have worked on both of these without the intent of them being tied to anything monetary... but is it that bad that I'm taking donations for my own work simply because it's powered by this code, especially considering this doesn't imply any kind of paywall and is a near necessity to continue the project altogether"? At the end of the day, no one loses anything regardless, TDM is already out there regardless of what I do... if I succeed though, people only gain an unique new game in addition, which will offer more fun and potentially increase TDM's popularity and community too.

 

@ Judith: I could use Unreal Engine or Unity for this project... though since I only work with FOSS tools I would use Godot engine at this stage. However I strongly prefer TheDarkMod as a basis, as it already has the mechanics and tools optimized precisely for this sort of gameplay and theme; I'd rather take a pragmatic decision and use a good code base that's already available and license compatible, rather than using a potentially poorer engine and wasting a few years rewriting the whole functionality (especially AI) only to avoid a passing controversy. Already my mod will have to redo all the base definitions at some point, although technically speaking it could stick with using several TDM defs... they will probably do the same things, only be written differently so they can count as original assets. As for media of what I've already achieved, see the two links in my first post which show the player models and textures... I'm already slowly working on new content, the next being original weapons and a full soundtrack.

 

@ Destined: Please do not confuse things and imply that I'm trying to take credit for someone else's work: There are currently two separate scifi mods underway, one maintained by me and one by Freyk. They will of course share tips and data with one another, we're already having fun collaborating and sharing ideas... right now though they are each their own thing. I have not yet ported any of Freyk's works to my version, and obviously claim no merit in any of the work he has done on his branch.



#17 Judith

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Posted 29 September 2017 - 08:22 AM

Forgive me for being harsh, but what you've shown so far isn't great, at least judging from the screenshots, and in terms of graphics. And, if I understand correctly, you've spent most of your time importing and managing other people's content. And you already want to ask for regular monthly donations (not to mention that your life depends on it). There are more than a few things messed up here, but only from a mod perspective, I'd use UE4 or Unity to avoid complications when it comes to liceses / terms of use, and also I'd use only things I made to avoid problems. And if I were to ask for donations, I'd show a polished proof of concept first: one level, location or environment, or gameplay piece, something to make players excited and informed, so they can have a vague idea what they pay for. I see none of that here.



#18 Destined

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Posted 29 September 2017 - 08:26 AM

Ok, it seemed to me as if you two were working together on the same mod.



#19 MirceaKitsune

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Posted 29 September 2017 - 08:52 AM

Forgive me for being harsh, but what you've shown so far isn't great, at least judging from the screenshots, and in terms of graphics. And, if I understand correctly, you've spent most of your time importing and managing other people's content. And you already want to ask for regular monthly donations (not to mention that your life depends on it). There are more than a few things messed up here, but only from a mod perspective, I'd use UE4 or Unity to avoid complications when it comes to liceses / terms of use, and also I'd use only things I made to avoid problems. And if I were to ask for donations, I'd show a polished proof of concept first: one level, location or environment, or gameplay piece, something to make players excited and informed, so they can have a vague idea what they pay for. I see none of that here.

 

The mod is in a very early stage. I barely have a test map, all I did so far is to port one character and texture set. I'm very happy with how that looks even if it's little, and already have a mental image of what I'm going to be doing next. If you wish to see more, being more encouraging would be a start; I'm working on rigging and animating new hands and weapons for those characters as we speak, hopefully I'll also have that to show relatively soon.

 

Yes, those are the characters from Xonotic like I said. I've worked with the Xon devs for nearly a decade now: They know of this and other side projects I make with the Xonotic assets, and are quite supportive of it in general. Also only two thirds of them are the original characters... one third are heavy modifications created by me years ago, which include reworked models and textures. Their original threads are still up:

 

https://forums.xonot...ad.php?tid=4464

https://forums.xonot...ad.php?tid=1471

 

You might also be surprised at how long it took to setup the weight painting on so many characters, so that they animate properly and are compatible with TDM animations. It was weeks of work in total, and even now I'm unhappy with how the fingers and face animations bend. If I had to create every single asset in addition to this, I'd have to hire an entire team of AAA artists which is hard for a FOSS project... I'm one person trying to put things together, this is why free licenses exist.


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#20 grayman

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Posted 29 September 2017 - 09:15 AM

@MK,

 

Could you point to the Patreon terms of use that support your project?

 

All I can find is a rule on this page, under the Authenticity topic that says "... no Creator is allowed to collect funds for *not doing* something, or to fund the distribution of creations that are not yours."

 

By distributing "your work plus TDM", aren't you claiming authorship of TDM?



#21 Judith

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Posted 29 September 2017 - 10:36 AM

If the whole thing is in the early stage, then I'd be even more reluctant to ask people for money. I know how long making assets takes, but people are more inclined to pay for what they see, not for what you think you might make someday.



#22 MirceaKitsune

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Posted 29 September 2017 - 10:40 AM

@MK,

 

Could you point to the Patreon terms of use that support your project?

 

All I can find is a rule on this page, under the Authenticity topic that says "... no Creator is allowed to collect funds for *not doing* something, or to fund the distribution of creations that are not yours."

 

By distributing "your work plus TDM", aren't you claiming authorship of TDM?

 

What do you mean "not doing something"? I am doing something... what I've created thus far didn't materialize out of thin air you know? Doing something does not mean everything being ready... if that was the case donations wouldn't even be needed, because everything would be paradoxically done by the time you needed the support to create it. Funny how you would bring that up precisely as I'm working on my mod right now... guess I was just doing nothing.

 

You have also used the term "your work plus TDM", after I've made it clear that the only thing being distributed and donated to is my work alone and not TDM. My packages will function on top of TDM as a mod, and people will be instructed to install TDM separately from its official website first. The only exception to this may occur if someday I decide to make a standalone version, meaning a bundle of idTech 4 + TDM gamecode (which is GPL licensed) + my mod... however I have no plans for such a thing right now, if anything this would be discussed years from now once the mod could function 100% independently.

 

I am not claiming ownership of anything I didn't make: Every author is properly credited in every project that I've created, as the Creative Commons license requires me to do and it's polite to do. TDM itself is FOSS, proprietary assets aside... meaning anyone can go ahead and fork it and put it on Github if they so wish. Using a CC licensed item does not mean claiming ownership of it.

 

I'm honestly surprised that someone in this community (even a developer) would seem to not understand free licenses or how open-source projects are forked, something people in open-source development circles work with every day as I have for a decade. If anyone has doubts about anything I've said here, please ask the communities of any other open game on the internet (Xonotic, Minetest, Megaglest, etc) with which I have worked in the past creating mods or contributing code. If people are angry at me for trying to take donations in order to survive while working on a massive project by myself, by all means say so directly... but please don't try to make it seem like this sort of thing is in some form dodgy, when people fork projects and work with CC licenses every day. At least that's the impression I got, sorry if I somehow misunderstood what I read.


Edited by MirceaKitsune, 29 September 2017 - 10:44 AM.


#23 Bikerdude

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Posted 29 September 2017 - 12:23 PM

What do you mean "not doing something"?

@MS, read the Patreon T/C's page Grayman was referring to chap -

 

- https://www.patreon.com/guidelines - second paragraph

Authenticity

 

Patreon is for artists, creators, and people who bring ideas... Don’t put up fake pages or collect money for things you’re not actually doing. You also can’t use Patreon as a prank or to fund non-activity. For example, no Creator is allowed to collect funds for *not doing* something, or to fund the distribution of creations that are not yours.

Grayman was merely quoting the the above, so if your taking issue with that then you need to consult Patreon.


Edited by Bikerdude, 29 September 2017 - 12:24 PM.


#24 grayman

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Posted 29 September 2017 - 12:52 PM

The quote from the Patreon rules was meant to show that they put "don't take $ for other people's work" right up there with "don't take $ and then not produce".

It was not an allegation that you aren't producing.

TDM has for 10 years been a community of passionate people contributing their time and expertise to fill a gap created when Looking Glass went under.

Legalities aside, I feel it's disrespectful of that mindset and the people in that community to want to make $ off that work.
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#25 MirceaKitsune

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Posted 29 September 2017 - 03:21 PM

Okay... I understand what you meant better then. The way that was worded felt like it emphasized on the idea that I was doing nothing, which left me a little confused at first.

 

The rule "don't take $ for other people's work" can greatly depend on what exactly you're doing when it comes to CC assets; If I was to simply download stuff from OpenGameArt, post it on Patreon as is, and say "this is what you supported me for"... I imagine that would be a problem both morally and as far as the TOS goes. What developers like me (who work with free assets) do is adapting and remixing freely licensed content, in order to create our own projects with their aid... which is usually the explicit purpose for which those assets are published altogether, and why websites like the following exist:

 

https://openclipart.org

https://opengameart.org

https://blendswap.com

 

Assets like those on there are intended for others to remix, adapt, and make their own games or animations with. In my case I'm doing just that, spending time modifying them so that they work in a specific engine. Sometimes that takes considerable amount of work, for instance to adjust the weight paint so existing animations work right plus creating the shadow mesh and other things... at other times it doesn't require as much effort to adapt, such as music which comes in ogg format so you can simply drop it in a directory. If any asset on there is not meant to be used commercially, they're listed under the CC-BY-NC-SA license (as is the case with the default assets of TDM)... anything that's not CC-BY-NC-SA or CC-BY-SA-ND can be used to create your own content, which you can in turn post about on websites like Patreon granted it's your project or your modifications that you're presenting. If this was not the case, working with Creative Commons assets would simply be banned on the site, which would spell disaster for countless creators worldwide.

 

I can see why it might be easy to think that I'm just taking assets, hammering them a few times so they render properly, then done. Remember I'm one person trying to make a triple-A quality game by myself (almost as Freyk / others might help me here). I have to do both model editing in Blender, texture editing in Gimp, sound editing in Audacity, learn how idTech 4 + TDM gamecode want me to make the definitions, and test that it all works together without major bugs. I do all that while working on +5 other games / mods, more than a dozen animations, and also drawing from time to time. Even with me using using free assets, it's going to take several years to finish this... if I had to model and texture everything I wouldn't even be considering it.

 

Legalities aside, I feel it's disrespectful of that mindset and the people in that community to want to make $ off that work.

 

That bit is what a lot of the confusion is over: On one hand, I'm only receiving donations for my own work (be it an original model or an adapted CC-BY model) as that is the one and only thing I redistribute and present to supporters. On the other hand, my work is separately intended to run on top of TDM's game code, with temporary runtime reliance on some assets as a stepping stone. How much does this mean I'm making $ off of work done in TDM? That isn't a sarcastic question or anything, I'm actually not sure myself as this is in part a circumstantial and interpretable thing. For instance I rely on the idTech 4 engine as much as I do on the TDM code... does that mean I'm disrespecting Valve Software, which in comparison are a much more proprietary company?

 

Speaking of which, I was also factoring in the fact that the developers of the game code chose the GPL in its case (which is my favorite license so I applaud it), which from my experience indicates being okay with a good degree of freedom. The only requirements of GPL is that the original authors are credited, and the source code is distributed alongside the end product... both things I would have gladly respected even if the license didn't require it. GPL doesn't take sides when it comes to receiving donations, and this is actually the first time I've ever encountered such an enigma with GPL licensed code.






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