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Thread: No artistic talent, can photos of objects be legally used in a game?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Alluvian's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006

    No artistic talent, can photos of objects be legally used in a game?

    This is mostly a legal issue, about whether a photograph of an item is still trademarked/copyright? The game would probably have something like mochi ads as the only form of income.

    I have some very solid gameplay ideas for a game that combines line rider and car wars, and was thinking of going with a micromachines/matchbox car look to it.

    The tracks I was planning on just physically making from household items and then photographing and touching them up.

    The cars are a stumbling point for me. I would LOVE to be able to photograph the top of matchbox cars and use them, but I suspect that would be violating copyright laws... Would it?

    If so, where does that end? Would a picture of a pen forming the wall of the track be a violation of bic copyright? Could I use pictures top down of real cars?

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    most likely you will encounter a copyright issue as micromachines have their distinct appearance. The copyright owner can choose to ignore the issue if they think ur usage of their product are not significant. They can also just send you warning letter to stop using their design. I dont really think they will sue you without few warnings to you before hand.

    The copyright owner will defend their materials particularly if they feel you are using their design in a bad taste (eg. u have a game that micromachines run over kids to score points) or you have generate a lot of income from it.

    Best thing to do is to retouch it so the design will not appear so much like micromachine. I mean they can copyright the colors, the shapes, the sounds, the logos, the types...etc. but they can not copyright miniature-looking cars, do u know what i mean?

  3. #3
    the cheesy child bounceboy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    If it doesn't have a logo, its less likely it'll be illegal.

    I suggest you just make some models and stuff yourself so then nobody has a reason to rip you off.

    (just offsubject, hello alluvian and jujumon. juju is my character name lol)

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