Roleplay Character/Art Theft

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Do you think Art/Character Theft is bad?

YES! BOTH!
45
85%
No! Neither!
0
No votes
Yes. Art is, but not character.
1
2%
Yes. Character is, but not Art.
1
2%
Who cares?
6
11%
 
Total votes : 53

Re: Roleplay Character/Art Theft

Postby midosuji » March 9th, 2015, 1:51:34 am

As someone who's been roleplaying on the internet since the age of eight, I can say this isn't anything new. I think we've all done it. But there is a distinction between claiming someone's art as your own, and using it for roleplay. I've used other's art countless times for roleplay. Or just as a profile picture. I'm pretty sure 99% of the roleplay population knows that the person they are roleplaying with didn't draw the character they are pretending to be.

What I would do, back when I was a young weaboo, is I'd come up with a character; then scour the internet in search of a drawing that closely resembled the character I'd come up with. But I'd never claim to own the artwork, and no-one ever asked.

Personally, and I know it might not be what you want to hear, but unless someone is claiming it as their own (literally saying "I drew this") it shouldn't matter. It does take time and effort to draw our OC's, but it's the internet. There's very little we can do about it, and there's very little reason to do anything about it.

I think the only reason anyone would be bothered by it is they designed their OC to be unique. Putting time and effort imagining them; then someone just pops in and sets it as their display picture without even reading your paragraphs of background information. They throw a really lame name like-- *whips out google translator* Yūutsuna Kōfuku (literally translates to Depressing Happiness).

I had an ex-girlfriend who roleplayed her OC "Nyuu Lilium" which was stupid. It was an Elfen Lied canon, not even an edited photo, and someone "stole" the name and pictures. They "stole" her roleplay identity and she was mad about it for years. Kind of unrelated, but it's just an example of how stupid some roleplayers can be.

When it all boils down, I changed characters so rapidly I never used any one artist's images for more than a week. Now I just stick to canon characters to spark conversations with people about anime I like. (i.e. Midosuji of Yowamushi Pedal).

Edit:
As a musician though, I know how this feels. I've had band names, album covers, the whole-bit stolen. Now that can be infuriating. I do know that if someone stole the OC I've had for the last four years, I'd want to fight.
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Re: Roleplay Character/Art Theft

Postby DracoHandsome » April 8th, 2015, 3:13:28 am

In terms of legality, the use of artwork without permission is fairly definitively illegal, and I don't think there's much to discuss there. I myself would probably not terribly mind an average sane, tasteful person roleplaying one of my characters, but I would probably mind if one of my characters' images was used for a completely unrelated character without attribution.

As for character theft itself, that depends. A character itself in terms of personality and concept is not directly protected by copyright. To protect the character, you must use the character substantially in a story. Copying the character is then copying your story and therefore can be considered a copyright violation if the copy is audacious enough (but there are only so many ideas to go around, so it may be found too generic or excuse-able.)



That said, the law be damned, I don't approve of clearly ripping off someone else's creativity.
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Re: Roleplay Character/Art Theft

Postby Shepherd917 » April 8th, 2015, 7:37:11 pm

I admit I don't have much of a moral opinion on this either way, I just would like to clarify something someone else in this thread wrote: "It's not considered theft if you give credit." That depends. There are certain Creative Commons licenses that allow for certain usage of a piece of media as long as the creator is properly attributed, but if something is published under a traditional copyright license, you can credit until the cows come home and it's still illegal to use and re-publish, with very limited exceptions.
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Re: Roleplay Character/Art Theft

Postby Elephant7307 » November 20th, 2018, 6:49:54 pm

I really consider it unfair to steal other people's characters. These artists and authors take time to make their OCs, and by stealing them and trying to pass them off as your own, you're completely ignoring the fact that they might have put their HEART and SOUL into their work. It is okay, however, to base off of an image an then make your own artwork.
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Re: Roleplay Character/Art Theft

Postby Megatronus » December 20th, 2018, 7:42:58 pm

Honestly I've never had a character stolen not even by name, but the fact is stealing a character is wrong stealing someones oc is worse. I'd probably punch someone if they stole one of my oc characters.
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Re: Roleplay Character/Art Theft

Postby DraconicMusic » June 7th, 2019, 5:41:16 pm

Megatronus wrote:Honestly I've never had a character stolen not even by name, but the fact is stealing a character is wrong stealing someones oc is worse. I'd probably punch someone if they stole one of my oc characters.


Same here. A popular dragon artist I like constantly has their art and characters stolen by other people claiming them as theirs. And I kid you not, someone actually made money off of their art on Amazon. The situation got so bad that the artist was forced to move to Patreon (although they still post art on their DA). It’s just sickening. And I would 100% want to punch someone in the face if my art/characters were stolen. I can’t even express how furious art/character theft makes me. :headdesk:
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Re: Roleplay Character/Art Theft

Postby SunsetVWF026 » August 4th, 2019, 7:08:14 pm

Shepherd917 wrote:I admit I don't have much of a moral opinion on this either way, I just would like to clarify something someone else in this thread wrote: "It's not considered theft if you give credit." That depends. There are certain Creative Commons licenses that allow for certain usage of a piece of media as long as the creator is properly attributed, but if something is published under a traditional copyright license, you can credit until the cows come home and it's still illegal to use and re-publish, with very limited exceptions.


Fully agreed--and I would like to add, "It's not considered theft if you give credit" can also apply from a non-legal perspective as well. As a Tumblr roleplayer for four years now, I have experienced it myself.

There was one person, a former close friend of mine, who once delighted in hearing the headcanons I had for my characters and worldbuilding. (For those of you who don't know what a headcanon is, it is a piece of information that someone ascribes to a character or world that isn't part of canon. For example, if I said "Harry Potter likes fine European cheeses," that would be a headcanon because none of the Harry Potter books described him liking that but I personally think he would.) We drifted apart and later I tried interacting with him again, but he continually refused to respond, so I assumed he didn't want to talk to me anymore and I went away, feeling extremely upset because he didn't even tell me why. He still used one of my headcanons for the Espeon species during this time, which I was fairly peeved by since he no longer wanted to talk to me anymore, but since I didn't want to start drama with him, I let it slide. After all, he was at least still crediting me, so he should still be allowed to use it, right?

It took me another incident to change my mind. Recently, I found out from another friend of mine that he had been calling my headcanons "bull****" behind my back and telling her how much he hated hearing me "ramble" about them………all while STILL EXPLOITING MY ESPEON HEADCANON. And yes, he had credited me the entire time, but frankly, the moment he started talking down on my creativity I would have IMMEDIATELY revoked permission for him to use any of my headcanons at all--which means that in a way, he was stealing from me even though he gave me credit. Stealing another person's art can mean using it without crediting them, but that is only a partial definition. Stealing is also using someone's art without their express permission. And if that permission was obtained by deception (and this ex-friend had certainly deceived me), that is as good as no permission at all.

He wasn't the only friend who has treated me like this. The exact same thing happened to me two other times as well, once by someone I had only known for a few weeks, another time by someone I once admired and considered a close friend. They acted friendly to my face before our relationships abruptly ended--only for me to find out later that they had blatantly stolen the fruit of my efforts, then relentlessly badmouthed me to anybody who would listen. As a result, I have very strong feelings about theft of work in any medium. Decent Tumblr RPers have a strict code of never using any art on their RP blogs without crediting the original artist, and most also wouldn't do it without the artist's permission. In the grand scheme of things, I think a 12 year old kid who just takes art of the first anime girl they see to represent their character is pretty harmless (though they should be gently taught otherwise). But if you are an adult in an adult world publicly using someone else's art for any purpose, for the love of God, PLEASE give credit and get permission--especially if you are using the art for profit. Not doing so leads to situations that DraconicMusic describes: people profit with zero effort off an artist's hard work. They cheat the artist of the recognition, dignified treatment and even financial payment they deserve; this crime is made all the worse by the fact that the artist may not even be aware until much later that they have been stolen from.

(Sorry if any of this sounded too forceful--this topic just gets me really riled up. XD)
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Re: Roleplay Character/Art Theft

Postby Sassenach » August 9th, 2019, 2:38:19 am

As an artist, it really stings when somebody makes off with a good handful of my time and effort without crediting, but I legitimately do not mind when someone uses my art as inspiration or reference for certain aspects of their own RP characters. I play Dungeons & Dragons pretty regularly and a good handful of my character concepts are based on concepts from other artists. I, personally, will link the piece from the artist's portfolio or the portfolio as a whole when using previously existing art as a launchpad for my own experiences, as long as the artist has not requested that the art not be used for such things or if I can track down a means to request permission.

Now, that being said, I don't mean to confuse art theft with character theft. My level 20 drow coincidentally turned out resembling Drizz't Do'Urden in personality and ideals, but he didn't get to be that way and I didn't even realize until three years into playing him. I hadn't even heard of Drizz't before I started reading his origin novels from R.A. Salvatore. Since the discovery, I've made every effort to discern Daero from Drizz't, even commissioning original art and working with my DM to create a more personalized backstory. However, a friend of a friend heard about Daero's adventures through the grapevine and... it was like looking in the mirror when I rolled up to an Adventurer's League session to aid some lower-level characters. I didn't want to be super rude but Daero was my first character (and arguably the one I'm most invested in, even if he hasn't been active much lately), and I was absolutely not okay with my character being ripped off. It ended up being this whole thing that ended in some tension and drama, and deleted phone numbers. The internet provides anonymity, so it's much harder to deal with that sort of thing. Still not okay, imo.
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Re: Roleplay Character/Art Theft

Postby Dragonssong43 » February 11th, 2020, 7:58:59 pm

snowflakeseal1234 wrote:I get really ticked when art/role play character theft occurs. Especially when the thief denies it. I mean, can't they just be original and use their brains?


because ppl have no imagination anymore. ik a game that was shutdown 10 years ago because of most its player base had no imagination. and it wasn't just looks but also names. my cousin told me he went to the main map and found 40 different versions of the hulk. see marval dosent mind ppl drawing the characters and such but when u take everything and say its yours is where marvel draws the line.

not exactly about chaeacter/art theft but still.
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