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BIAB comments and debate

Wednesday, February 4, 2009 , Posted by Suzanne Powell at 2:41 PM

Today I got a few comments on an old post I did on BIABs and IP infringement:

Business In A Box - should be banned...

The jest of the comment from today was that "How am I supposed to know if I have permission to use these textures/items?"

The answer: only buy from reputable sources

Reputable means that the seller is established and has a good track record - also they will include a statement saying that they hold the resell rights to those textures/item and will delineate how and where you can use them.

There are a few people who are reputable and do sell merchant resources - but a vast majority of the BIABs are fraudulent and the textures and items that are included were obtained through nefarious means. People getting into the fashion scene and who are looking to make a quick buck can say they "didn't know" or that they were sure the person they bought from was telling the truth - but really we all know that this type of person really did not do their homework and didn't research the "content seller" enough.

Most of the designers and content creators are sick to death of it - simply because there is very little that we can do to stop it. And then where is the line really? I mean there's different levels of IP infringement - the worst is the direct copy using a script copier, open GL image ripper or copybot, the next is where someone rips off an existing brand and uses that brands logo and artwork to sell items; even if the items were made by the artist - the textures used were created by someone else or are trademarked.

My advice/suggestion to anyone even thinking of BIAB or full-perm anything is that you research the merchant and MAKE SURE that that person is legit. These vendors will usually provide screenshots of their creation process and they may even have copyrights done to their items so that you can tell that they are ok.

I know this debate has been rehashed over and over - but it is astounding to see that people still think it isn't a big deal, or that because they didn't know better that it makes it ok.

IDK - I wish there was a simple solution. I wish that in order to become a merchant that a screening process were in place so that people buying items would be at least somewhat secure in knowing that the items were at least made by the vendor or that they have rights to sell them. How many designers/merchants out there would be willing to do this I wonder? Some have fiercly stated that they never would like that - which only casts a suspicious eye on their creations. I know that a lot of designers like me would do it - I certainly would. I would submit my photoshop layers and my original 3d files (for sculpted items) for review - even if I had to pay to have it done, that would be just fine. I make enough money on this that a small fee would be ok by me if it meant that it would clean up some of the rif-raf hanging out there. The only people that I could see controlling this would be Linden Labs - but that is a loaded thought.

Oversight is good as long as the people overseeing it are trustworthy and capable. So who is capable and who is trustworthy - very few, so I guess the quandry will never be solved and we are all mired in a quagmire of mistrust and accusation.

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