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Intellectual Property Questions

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Eliiana Aura wrote:

Some of my items were recently taken from my marketplace, claiming they were IP infringement. The items taken were handmade Princess costumes for toddlers. They were not perfect replicas of any famous copyright, they were my own similar vision. All of my textures used were handmade in Photoshop. I never used the copyrighted company name or images on either the ADs nor the backgrounds, and apart from perhaps accidentally using the company name in the search description, (which I have since remedied), I do not feel I violated anything. I never made claim to own exclusive rights, and there are many others who have since created their own take on similar costumes.

Anyway, I contacted LL about the issue, wanting clarity to see what I had done wrong. Over the next couple of days, nearly all of the taken items were returned to my marketplace AND my location in-world, with the exception of four. I have not yet heard back from them regarding this issue, so as you might imagine, I am feeling a bit confused and concerned. I checked my ADs carefully to see what I might have done wrong, and other than one AD, which had 'inspired by (insert company name and character name here),' none of my costumes were in violation, to my knowledge. 

I have seen many, MANY people 'create' copyrghted items in SL, many of which outwardly have direct copy/pasted images right on the item. Others have re-created famous characters, buildings, etc, with no such claim filed against them, some are even very famous, well-known SL stores. I find it hard to beleive that all of these creators have rights to use these images and words on their products. 

So my question is: Since my items are NOT ripped models, do NOT have copyrighted images, words, or textures on them and are NOT direct replicas of anything copyrighted, why were they in violation? Moreover, why were the majority of my costumes returned to me by LL after having been pulled, with no explanation? I do not wish to be banned, but I am unsure how to proceed, since I have no idea how to contact them as there is no live support option available to me. 

I really appreciate any insight given, and I will continue to wait for LL to contact me, which will hopefully be soon. 

I don't understand -- if these were entirely your own designs what "company name" did you remove?

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Hi  Eliiana,

LL probably received a complaint from another resident. If they later restored much of the removed content, I don't think this was the result of an official DMCA takedown notification, as the removed content (if I read this correctly) can only be restored upon receipt of a valid counter notification.

So, it may have been a disgruntled resident AR'ing your content, followed by LL reacting, then reviewing, then restoring content they deemed in the clear. The stuff that's still missing must be giving them pause.

"Inspired by Princess Elsa" (just guessing ;-). would violate Disney's Trademark. While you can certainly sell costumes that are inspired by Elsa's look, you can't use her (or Disney's) name. That would be considered freeloading on the goodwill Disney earned through the creation of that character and curation of their brand.

And speaking of Elsa, I'm still wrestling with her conversion from good-girl to glamourous ice-diva while climbing the ice bridge and creating her castle while singing "Let It Go". It's a fantastically powerful moment, but ultimately I'm not fully comfortable with the message. Women can be powerful and confident without the slink, the heels, and sassy flip of the hair.

That said, golly did I swoon! And I have a slinky ice-blue gown in SL. I'm gonna have to figure out how to look good in it.


ETA: Oooh, I found the clip. The troublesome moment for me starts at 3:00 or so...

That whole clip is powerful. I get her frustration with being different. I get that her sexyness is directed at noone. But that moment just sends a mixed message to me.

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