Forum:Fair Use and the RSMV./Archive

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This thread was archived on 11 May 2010 by Liquidhelium.

NOTE: This is the first part of the discussion going on at Forum:Fair Use and the RSMV. --LiquidTalk 20:23, May 11, 2010 (UTC)

If you are looking at it from an American perspective, look at Title 17, Chapter 12 (1201 (a)) of the United States Code, enacted by the DMCA.

(2) No person shall manufacture, import, offer to the public, provide, or otherwise traffic in any technology, product, service, device, component, or part thereof, that —

(A) is primarily designed or produced for the purpose of circumventing a technological measure that effectively controls access to a work protected under this title;

— Paragraph 2

That pretty much answers 1 (no, it's not legal to produce or distribute the RSMV). And

(A) No person shall circumvent a technological measure that effectively controls access to a work protected under this title.
— Paragraph 1

pretty much prevents other people from using the RSMV.

But (and this is a big but!)

(1) Nothing in this section shall affect rights, remedies, limitations, or defenses to copyright infringement, including fair use, under this title.
— Section (b)

That's an interesting and ridiculous statement, given that the prohibitions against making circumvention mechanisms do not consider the intentions of the end user, and so would need to be criminalized regardless of the intentions of their user, and so to the end user, the right to fair use is infringed since the tool to perform acts under fair use are still prohibited. Endasil (Talk) @  05:24, April 23, 2010 (UTC)

(1) Interesting start, but your rationale isn't based in facts. Fact: there's no DRM here, and (2) fair use trumps the first statement (fact... it's right there: "Nothing in this section shall affect..."), (3) this doesn't always apply to just any piece of DRM (but that's irrelevant since this isn't DRM). The reason why I mentioned the DRM case is because DRM cracking falls under a higher fair use standard than this does. --Agamemnus 07:11, April 23, 2010 (UTC)
My goal wasn't to present conclusions, just present relevant excerpts from the law since you clearly have little understanding of copyright law. I was not trying to take a stance on this issue. Clearly there are exemptions for fair use; I was the one that posted them! Endasil (Talk) @  17:21, April 23, 2010 (UTC)
"since you clearly have little understanding of copyright law"--> nice little attack there... so let me rehash: your starting sentences mention DRM laws, I say that DRM doesn't apply in this case but was only used as an example, and you say I have "clearly little understanding of copyright law." NICE! --Agamemnus 17:41, April 23, 2010 (UTC)
It wasn't meant to be an attack, and sorry if it sounded harsh. But the legal arguments in your main post make no sense, plain and simple. Why would the copyrightability of the RSMV itself be even close to relevant? I'm sorry, but that's just indicative of not knowing what factors need to be considered here. So I was trying to present more relevant legal material. And again, you keep bringing up "DRM" which is a loaded term and is not actually mentioned in the laws I brought up. The law has its own definition for control access mechanisms, and it's a lot less clear-cut as you make it out to be. Endasil (Talk) @  17:56, April 23, 2010 (UTC)
DRM is simply a common synonym for technological access controls. --Andorin (Talk) (Contribs) 18:00, April 23, 2010 (UTC)
I know what DRM is. My point about saying it's a "loaded term" is that people have a preconceived notion as to how to define DRM, they associate it with rights to media files, and their definitions are usually contradictory with how it's defined in the DMCA. Endasil (Talk) @  18:20, April 23, 2010 (UTC)
It's relevant in the sense that there needs to be a separation of arguments. In past RSMV forum threads, the issue of the legality of even the creation or use of the RSMV has been brought up over and over again, and while some have responded with very long-winded posts, it consistently fell on deaf ears and created a sort of cycle of long-winded responses to uninformed challenges.--Agamemnus 19:58, April 23, 2010 (UTC)
There is no DRM, the RSMV simply extracts data in a common compression format. However, one argument to bring up is its ability to parse this data and render it graphically. The way I see it, this function is legal too. After all, OpenOffice.org can open Microsoft Word files and render them, and that's a proprietary format - do we know for certain that the extracted files are not in a common image format such as PNG?. I'm a regular user and I approve this message.  TLUL Talk - Contribs 12:41, April 23, 2010 (UTC) 
I would just like to add the opinion that the DMCA is an absolutely terrible law that doesn't deserve to exist. Yes, we still have to abide by it, to my extreme regret, but I want to register my dissatisfaction with such.
On a more productive note, can others verify that the cache images are in fact protected by some form of DRM? I've heard about the need to decompress them with a special program to view them, but I want some evidence demonstrating that the compression is in fact a copy protection mechanism instead of something else entirely. --Andorin (Talk) (Contribs) 05:39, April 23, 2010 (UTC)
The DMCA doesn't talk specifically about "DRM", but I think a case can be made that since ordinarily, access to the content is meant to be given solely through the RuneScape client, it qualifies as a "technical measure that effectively controls access to a work":
(B) a technological measure “effectively controls access to a work” if the measure, in the ordinary course of its operation, requires the application of information, or a process or a treatment, with the authority of the copyright owner, to gain access to the work.
Now, granted, under that interpretation, unzipping/deflating any archive without implicit (by that being form of delivery to the end user) or explicit (by saying it's OK even if it's not the intended usage) consent from the author would be illegal under the DMCA. Endasil (Talk) @  17:21, April 23, 2010 (UTC)
Right, I've got time to make a better reply. Here is how I see it:
1. Pursuant to my comment above, I would require some arguments demonstrating that accessing the cache, or distributing a tool to access the cache, constitutes access control circumvention under the DMCA. Who's to say that the compression is not simply something required for it to work?
2. As you've said, this is a murky area as it involves the intentionally ambiguous nature of fair use. With respect to something you mentioned in this part, it's important to note that displaying the cache does not interfere with Jagex's market for RuneScape, thereby satisfying the fourth factor of fair use (how much the use of the copyrighted work impacts the market for the copyrighted work). There is no market for the cache images themselves. However, the issue is that the ambiguity of fair use leads to this entire argument being one of personal opinions, not of legal facts. That is why it has not been resolved.
3. I wholeheartedly agree with the statement, implicit or explicit, that the cache images are no different from images we can obtain by pressing Print Screen while playing RuneScape. The same policies should apply to both.
4. Yes, please. I am rather aggravated at the amount of drama this issue has apparently caused. --Andorin (Talk) (Contribs) 06:02, April 23, 2010 (UTC)
You should post a "support" somewhere here. ;)--Agamemnus 07:17, April 23, 2010 (UTC)

Question - Why create a new thread for this and not just post under the old one? scoot4.pngscooties 05:53, April 23, 2010 (UTC)

I'm pretty sure the old one was closed. --Andorin (Talk) (Contribs) 06:02, April 23, 2010 (UTC)

Comment - There are four rather broad areas of "intellectual property" that are often confused with each other... especially by popular news media and sometimes by those who bring up discussions about things like a computer or a computer program. I'm also going to throw in a 5th kind of "intellectual property" that is also often added to the mess in some discussions like this:

  • Copyright - literally the authority to copy, or the "right to copy" what is usually considered the printed word, although it has been extended to stuff like photographs, music, and computer software. It is comparatively easy to copyright something and all it requires is showing some original thought of some kind, including merely organizing stuff. More about this below, but it is only to copyright that fair-use principles apply. In the USA copyrights are administered through and registered with the Library of Congress.
  • Patents - This is the ability to reproduce what is usually a mechanical device. Yes, computer software is sometimes patented (something that has been hotly debated in several political circles and not always universally recognized), but patents on computer programs are incredibly narrow in scope and indicate that it is something completely novel and nothing even remotely like it has ever been done before. To the best of my knowledge Jagex has not formally patented any of its software processes and certainly has not advertised those patents or asserted they are "patent pending" or are in the process of filing for a patent for something they have done (something required in patent law... in part to enforce those patents). Note that in the USA that patents are issued by the United States Patent and Trademark Office.... a completely different agency than those who deal with copyright and a completely different section of law too.
  • Trademarks - This is a "brand" to help with marketing a product or service. Examples of a trademark include the name "Runescape", "Fun Orb", "Mechscape", and even terms used within the game like "Varrock" and "Falador". They don't necessarily have to be registered, but trademark registration does make it easier to enforce those terms. Jagex has filed trademark registrations extensively.
  • Trade Secrets - These are concepts and marketing or business strategies that are intended to stay within an organization, usually a corporation. Active efforts on the part of the organization must try to keep this information "confidential" and usually is maintained through a "non-disclosure agreement" (NDA) that individuals must sign. Typically a click-through agreement (such as ther terms of service agreement) is not sufficient for an NDA, and often requires an ink signature and certainly requires complete contact information such as address, phone number, and potentially a government identification number (like a social security number or driver's license number). Generally, unless you are an employee or somebody providing a contracted service for that company, trade secrets don't apply to you. If Jagex is worth their salt, I'm certain their employees have signed NDAs that even spells out the potential civil penalties for disclosure of that information.... and there are also statutory penalties that can apply beyond a contract too. If Jagex has "confidential" information, it would be something like this covered by an NDA where some developer within Jagex would not only get fired but also lose a couple year's worth of salary for publishing details about what Jagex is going to release over the next year (at least revealing those details without permission). Trade secrets in the USA are governed not by federal but rather state law, which gives a real crazy legal environment for their application and use. Violating a Jagex NDA might be one of the few ways for an American to end up in a UK courtroom too. An ordinary player will not be subject to trade secrets, or any contributor to this wiki unless you are also a Jagex employee (or signed a Jagex NDA).
  • National Security Secrets - I bring this one up because in previous discussions trade secrets were confused with official state secrets or national security secrets. This would be things like locations and types of weapons for military units, infrastructure details that could be used to cause terrorism, or other sorts of officially "classified" content that can potentially cause irreparable harm to the country in question. In the USA violating these laws doesn't just empty your bank account, but it is one of the few capital crimes besides murder explicitly on the law books. Yes, you can receive the death penalty for disclosing an official state secret. Unless MI-5 is doing something with Jagex that I'm not aware of (and will likely never be aware of), nothing Jagex is doing can be classified as an official state secret. It was silly that this was invoked earlier, and should never, ever, be confused with a trade secret at all.

I bring all this up because apparently there is some huge confusion by the above comments about what exactly is intellectual property, and the essay at the beginning of this thread seems to confuse these kinds of laws. BTW, the RSMV does qualify independently for copyright, even if what it displays is also a derivative copyright to Jagex. In other words, if Jagex got ahold of the model viewer and decided to distribute it on their website, that would actually be illegal as it wasn't written by Jagex. That would require a license by the developers of the model viewer. That the model viewer might be considered in the public domain is a separate issue, but that is a fly in the ointment here to consider. BTW, the authors of the RSMV are not asserting any patent protection, or for that matter any sort of special "intellectual property" protection of any kind. They may have granted a GPL license, but that isn't really all that clear based on what I've seen.

There is really only one very narrow area of law that applies to any sort of policy making on this wiki, and that would involve the legality of something that has been taken as a screen capture and then subsequently uploaded to this wiki.... where the source of that screen capture is called into question for its legality. Since patent law doesn't apply (no patent has been asserted by Jagex), the only laws that really apply here are trade secret laws and copyright. In the case of a trade secret, it would apply to the individual who was so foolish and stupid as to set themselves up to violate that trust, but those of us on the "outside" of those NDAs there are no consequences legally speaking. In the case of the DVD content scrambling system (an encoding system used to protect the content of DVD movies), trade secrets were disseminated widely and there was some legal precedence in terms of court injunctions to attempt to stop the trade secret from getting further spread around. Subsequent court rules threw all of that out and found such actions to be contrary to law. It can make your life miserable even if the law is on your side, so it is still wise to tread lightly and not simply run to publish something you know to be a trade secret.... and an ethical argument is to be invoked here in terms of knowingly publishing something you know is a trade secret.

More to the point, trade secret laws simply don't apply to 99% of those who are contributors to this wiki, and certainly doesn't apply to the creators of the RSMV. Instead, I assert the only functional law that operates here is copyright law and nothing else. Further more, what is being called into question isn't something where a user is "hacking" into the Jagex computers and stealing content that you don't have authorization to access, but rather something which is on your own hard drive. That is the real key here, and you can access the contents of the model cache even if you yank the network connection from your computer completely. Does Jagex "own" the contents of the model cache? Yes.... under terms of ordinary copyright.

There is also the official "terms of service" agreement, but I'm asserting that is completely irrelevant to this topic as it applies to your actions while on-line, not what you happen to do with the bytes that have been put onto your computer in the process of playing.

As for the legality of reverse engineering the model viewer, I assert that it is irrelevant in terms of this discussion as it has already been done. If there is a violation of the law, it is the developers of the model viewer to whom it applies and not the end-users. We, on this wiki, are not intending to distribute the actual model viewer software, nor am I advocating that we should. Indeed I argue that it would be a bad idea for a number of reasons, but again that is not relevant to the discussion of if we should permit RSMV images onto this wiki. Getting this narrowed down even more, all we are talking about are the images from that model viewer and how they should be used on this wiki.

From here, I note two classes of images:

  • Images used with permission, under license
  • Images used without permission, under terms of fair use

It is possible to get permission to access images from Jagex, and in fact for most fansites such permission is granted on the Jagex website... with certain limits. My assertion is that with the terms of the CC-by-SA license we have here on this wiki, all images that are used on this wiki should be done within the much narrower scope of fair-use, as such license from Jagex can be revoked at any time for any reason and is contrary to the terms of the CC-by-SA license.

In terms of content from the RSMV, we need to consider the copyright authority of both the creators of the model viewer and Jagex (as it is Jagex content which is being displayed). Still, with fair-use, as long as it is being done for critical commentary it is in effect the same thing and the copyright status is irrelevant. Fair use can be used as the rationale for publishing the image, just as fair use is the rationale for publishing a similar image that is derived from the regular user client that Jagex publishes. Either the images we use from the user client are illegal and the RSMV are illegal, or they are both legal.

It is for this reason I assert there is no legal question here at all in terms of having a narrow policy that permits at least some images from the RSMV to be uploaded and used on this wiki. There certainly is an ethical issue involved here as it is something Jagex would certainly rather not be used or at least used extensively, and there is a potential threat in terms of somebody wishing to cause trouble with your computer to put a virus or some other malware into the software with the model viewer that is a legitimate concern. Still, we are not asking readers and ordinary users of this wiki to be using the model viewer either, but merely displaying a screen capture from that software. That is all we are talking about here, and permission from Jagex is absolutely not needed in any way manner or form.

It is for this reason I hope that some sort of sanity can come forth and not try to make up laws that simply don't exist. --Robert Horning 15:01, April 23, 2010 (UTC)

P.S. Fair use is actually a personal rights issue, similar to free speech and is in fact linked closely with the 1st Amendment in the USA. It is for that reason the DMCA explicitly exempts fair use from the circumvention issues, as you can legitimately copy something with fair-use purposes to create some other copyrighted product. Fair use does not require permission of the original copyright holder, but it does put some severe limits on what can be copied and how it is copied. It can't prevent duplication of that content, however. --Robert Horning 15:11, April 23, 2010 (UTC)

Brilliant post, RH. --Andorin (Talk) (Contribs) 16:05, April 23, 2010 (UTC)
I like this post too, since a lot of people do mix together the distinct forms of "IP". Would you agree that your conclusions could be distilled to "if we didn't make the software to get the images, and we didn't use the software to get the images, and instead are just presenting the images under fair use, then this is a legal non issue"? Endasil (Talk) @  17:32, April 23, 2010 (UTC)
Who did create the software? --Andorin (Talk) (Contribs) 17:45, April 23, 2010 (UTC)
Good question, but not one I know (or care to find out) the answer to, and not one that is relevant to our decision as a Wiki. Endasil (Talk) @  18:35, April 23, 2010 (UTC)
It's someone who worked on coding for Moparscape and SCAR. Cant remember the username off the top of my head but I'll see if I can turn up a link. -Aburnett(Talk) 18:47, April 23, 2010 (UTC)
Apparently it was Bentski - as stated here - --KgnomesTalk 18:53, April 23, 2010 (UTC)
Indeed it is. --Aburnett(Talk) 18:58, April 23, 2010 (UTC)
Excellent post. However -- I do not confuse the laws, sir. The first point is there for a clear separation of arguments. With all your excellent posts in previous forum threads, we had still not moved forward on the issue because people were confused at what items were relevant and what were not, and they were not willing to read and understand your posts entirely. --Agamemnus 17:49, April 23, 2010 (UTC)
Ah, it's good to hear a paragraph or five from you again. I can't remember who said it or where, but I think that the quote was similar to this: "When I see a post from Robert Horning, I know it's going to be a complete, well-thought out argument." I couldn't agree more, and I enjoy reading your posts as they are always clear and well-written. I'm a regular user and I approve this message.  TLUL Talk - Contribs 07:14, April 24, 2010 (UTC) 

http://img408.imageshack.us/img408/2620/2vjueyb.jpg Ancient talisman.png Oil4 Talk 16:57, April 27, 2010 (UTC)

eFair Use, Technical Encryption & the DMCA

I'd just like to start with the assertion that I'm not a lawyer. However, I feel that you may be missing stuff here.

  • There is a big difference in asserting Fair Use over released material compared to unreleased (but downloaded material).
  • [[1]] shows that companies will, whether fair use can be applied or not, submit a DMCA takedown notice. It's a fire-and-forget weapon which for Wikia, would be obeyed without question. It's far easier to take the hit, which is smaller, compared to trying to fight the challenge legally.
  • If the wiki wanted to be fair and provide evidence, it would have to provide a link to the software itself
  • Are you actually all using the same copy. Are you 100% sure that the code actually accesses the cache on your computer and doesn't try and find more?
  • A lot of the case history concerns the access of released material, namely movies and DeCSS. However, this would only apply to images that have already been released. Any content which can not be accessed via the approved methods is beyond what DeCSS was trying to do in respect for movies. In addition, using DeCSS IS illegal in the US (see below) Norway is not a signatory of the WIPO Copyright Treaty, the US is well known as one of the strictest enforcers.

You can claim fair usage as much as you like, but I'm not convinced it has sufficient merit. The EFF (a valued defender of fair use) notes:

"Fair use is decided by a judge, on a case by case basis, after balancing the four factors listed in section 107 of the Copyright statute. The factors to be considered include: ... d)The effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work"

Jagex could well claim that the effect of you pre-releasing an inferior (or even unfinished) copy outside it's normal environment damaged the value of the final content.

ChillingEffects, a defender of many under DMCA takedowns says:

"But here's the catch: It is UNLAWFUL for someone to TRAFFIC IN technology that can be used to circumvent technological copyright protection systems. Therefore, unless you can circumvent the copyright holder's protection yourself, it is unlikely that you will be able to find the technology you need elsewhere. Note that it is also UNLAWFUL for you to circumvent ACCESS control technologies. See Chapter 12 of the Copyright Act, particularly section 1201. For more information on the anticircumvention provisions, see the Chilling Effects topic Anticircumvention (DMCA)."

Thus, it is illegal to download and use RSMV. If you are capable of coding it yourself, then it's fine. This would however make it impossible to use on the Wiki. The code couldn't be shared in any form (this is how the 'illegal prime number' came about). ChillingEffects acknowledges that this serves to undermine fair use. However this is the view that has been upheld in various cases (upto the Supreme I believe).

King Runite1 19:07, April 24, 2010 (UTC)

Another well thought out posting, and I think your last paragraph generally gels with that I said in my first posting: ...the prohibitions against making circumvention mechanisms do not consider the intentions of the end user, and so would need to be enforced regardless of the intentions of their user, and so to the end user, the right to fair use is infringed since the tool to perform acts under fair use is still prohibited. I do think you're inconsistent at the end though. Section 1201 prohibits even producing those circumvention mechanisms, not just distributing them. And either way, I think the real question comes from whether or not our using those images could fall under the scope of fair use or not. Test (d) that you cite is an important rule that may indicate that images taken from the RSMV might need to be considered on a case-by-case basis. Endasil (Talk) @  20:14, April 24, 2010 (UTC)
Your statements are not based in facts. First of all, released material IS downloaded material by definition. Secondly, there's no DCMA issue here; there's no DRM. Thirdly, "are you 100% sure that the code actually accesses the cache on your computer and doesn't try and find more?" -- what? Where else can the "code" look? That just doesn't make any sense. --Agamemnus 02:23, April 25, 2010 (UTC)
Jagex has demonstrated they believe that private access modifiers is DRM. I think writing their own graphics format constitutes such DRM. In addition, you are wrong. Just because you've downloaded it doesn't mean it's released. Pre-release content is a fundamental part of the Steam Distribution Network, but you can't claim fair use by extracting that data before the game's launched. Fundamentally you don't have the right to manipulate downloaded or physical digital content. This is the entire basis of the illegality of DeCSS. It is protected by DRM, so it IS illegal.
With regards to the afore-mentioned quote, my point is simply that unless you understand the code you are running you have no idea - it could be pulling data from RS servers! King Runite1 03:03, April 25, 2010 (UTC)
PS: Writing your own graphics format would seem to cover "a technological measure that effectively controls access to a work" as without understanding the format you can't view the work. --King Runite1 03:17, April 25, 2010 (UTC)
http://img202.imageshack.us/img202/6269/downloadvsrelease.png
No, DRM specifically requires a key and encryption to unlock content. A non-public format does not qualify as "DRM". "Just because you've downloaded it doesn't mean it's released."-- that just gets to your fundamental understanding of how computers work. Content that is downloaded is on your PC, and no one can hold a gun, physical or metaphorical, to force you not to see it. You already have it! Whether it's included in a game or not is legally irrelevant. --Agamemnus 16:38, April 25, 2010 (UTC)
Please could you quote from a reliable source for this requirements - no mention of it is made on the EFF and ChillingEffects for this requirement - simply lack of case history isn't sufficient. I'll quote: Jagex Current Lawsuit - Page 9: "In addition, the Bots’ use of reflection techniques and circumvention of private access modifiers on RuneScape® data fields circumvents security measures put in place by Jagex to protect its copyrighted works." as being evidence against your view. --King Runite1 12:43, April 26, 2010 (UTC)
(1) This lawsuit is about macros in Runescape. (2) It's a lawsuit, not the law, therefore posting it here is again missing the point. The discussion here is of the law.--Agamemnus 20:06, April 26, 2010 (UTC)
It's an exact example of the law that we are discussing being implemented in a case that is not about encryption. Surely if the case is valid then the law obviously doesn't require the object to be encrypted for the DMCA to apply. It's highly relevant if you read the section I identified. --King Runite1 21:05, April 27, 2010 (UTC)
Even if some portion of the lawsuit might have some vague connection to what we are discussing, it's irrelevant as an argument because this lawsuit is not the law.--Agamemnus 04:12, April 28, 2010 (UTC)
See common law for why this isn't the case. It's called a legal precedent. --King Runite1 18:03, April 30, 2010 (UTC)
.... But my dear King Runite1, legal precedents aren't based on lawsuits, but on laws. --Agamemnus 05:03, May 2, 2010 (UTC)

Split

Comment - I'm of the belief that the RSMV discussion has been home to several partially informed users, myself included, who asserted beliefs hinged weakly on bits and pieces of laws. While I still hold that, due to the nature of fair use, only a judge may determine the outcome of a fair use dispute, I'm here to discuss.

First, I assert that the terms of service do apply, as you have no cache on your computer until you agree to the terms, as they say that you agree to the terms by using the Jagex product, Runescape. Whether or not you are on-line does not affect the status of that legal agreement or the protection that the agreement provides the Jagex product commonly called the cache.

In the terms it says: "To use many features of Jagex Products, we require you to create an account. We grant valid account holders a non-exclusive, non-transferable license for the period of membership to use Jagex Products and to download and use our client software and connect to our servers solely to use Jagex Products in accordance with these terms and conditions."

In the terms, it restates that it is illegal to reverse-engineer, hack, etc, as we've already established. However, the quote I just gave contains the keyword "license." As the owners of Runescape, they have the right to say who can and can't use Jagex Products, which includes the cache. Jagex says that only those who agree to the terms may have an account, and only those who have an account may use the Jagex Products, and they can only use the products in the way that Jagex says, else they are breaking their agreement. Those who do have the right to have the cache on their computer for the purpose of playing Runescape can't access the cache with RSMV, else they're breaking the agreement. If someone does not agree to that legal agreement, Jagex provides the other option to not agree, not make an account, not play, and not receive the cache. If you break the agreement, or if you never agreed with the agreement, you don't have a license to have a Jagex Product, which includes the cache. In the quote I gave, it also says "non-transferable." This means that those who don't agree with the terms have no way of legally receiving Jagex Products.

The wiki won't face charges of reverse-engineering, etc, as those are the actions of individuals; the wiki is a separate legal entity - an organization. However, hosting files on the wiki constitutes distribution, as any file on the wiki can be downloaded. The worst consequences will fall on those who uploaded the images; Jagex has the right to subpoena that information and press charges against those who reverse-engineered, etc. The wiki's punishment will just be a takedown notice, but the point is that it is still illegal for the wiki to host those files on account of distributing them to those who have no right to have them; nobody has the right to have cache files except in their natural format for use in accordance with the terms of service by the Jagex Product Runescape.

Regardless of the section in copyright law that states "Nothing in this section shall affect... fair use," the nature of the cache images is illegality in that Jagex Product users make a separate agreement with Jagex, who in that agreement disallows any accessing of the cache. I assert that the illegal nature of the use outweights that the purpose of the use is to provide new information, thereby making it an unfair use. Leftiness 21:08, April 24, 2010 (UTC)

I agree that this in reality comes down to an analysis of cost and benefits to the Wiki. But by your line of reasoning, if I could get you to agree to an agreement that would have me murder you in your sleep next Friday, and you agreed to it, I could then murder you. License agreements will always be subject to the law, and time has shown again and again that agreements that do not respect the law are declared void against the license provider.
It's important to understand that license agreements never define legality. At best they define permission and the terms under which the contract can be fulfilled, as well as the punitive effects of breaking the contract (which must fit within existing laws of course). So it's not a question of legality, it's a question of breach of contract. A construction company that is a week late building a road has not broken a law or done anything illegal, but they may have breached the terms of the contract. Similarly, with permission, that may include defining what permission people have to distribute copyrighted material (asserting copyright) under existing copyright laws, but it can never redefine the copyright laws! Endasil (Talk) @  21:23, April 24, 2010 (UTC)
"While I still hold that, due to the nature of fair use, only a judge may determine the outcome of a fair use dispute, I'm here to discuss." That is where your logic breaks down. There is no "fair use dispute" here. Edit: in other words, you and I may have a dispute on what constitutes fair use, but just read my o riginal points. This is not a question of involving a judge. --Agamemnus 02:19, April 25, 2010 (UTC)
Technically, you might be only charged under assisted suicide, but that'd be a tough call. I'm sure Jagex is aware of the limits of a ToU agreement. --King Runite1 03:12, April 25, 2010 (UTC)

Split

Comment - First, I was previously of the belief that RSMV the software is not illegal in the same way as BitTorrent the software isn't illegal, that both may be used to perform illegal acts. With Endasil's quote, I doubt the legality of even having RSMV. That said, I downloaded RSMV. The only thing I've done with it is read the scripts and whatnot, so I'm not sure if I've done something terribly wrong or not... I'm running Linux, so it isn't like I could use RSMV.exe if I wanted to.

Anyway, in Main.java of RSMV.rar, line 136 says "private static String address = "world169.runescape.com";" this is where RSMV connects to the server to download the latest cache. I've been told that you can direct RSMV to simply unpack the current cache, if you have it, but there is definitely the option to connect to Jagex's servers, which I would call illegal, if I were absolutely sure about the status of laws on the topic. Regardless of legality, it is a breech of contract, unless you never agreed, in which case I'm unsure what it would be called. I'm sure it's not allowed to connect to someone's servers without permission, but if it isn't a specific law and you didn't agree to a contract... Something along the lines of using someone's private property.

Don't misunderstand me here; I'm not typing this in a rude, harsh, etc, way. I now understand the concept of broken contracts vs. illegality, but I'm asking in which part of the terms is there an illegal statement which voids the agreement, and where in my comments did I redefine copyright?

I know that you assert that this isn't about a judge getting involved. However, if we claim fair use, even if we believe that it is a fair use, even if it is a fair use, Jagex can issue a takedown notice. If we insist that the use is fair, whether or not it is fair, there will be a fair use dispute, and only a judge will be able to determine its outcome. According to Stanford, "The difficulty in claiming fair use is that there is no predictable way to guarantee that your use will actually qualify as a fair use. You may believe that your use qualifies--but, if the copyright owner disagrees, you may have to resolve the dispute in a courtroom. Even if you ultimately persuade the court that your use was in fact a fair use, the expense and time involved in litigation may well outweigh any benefit of using the material in the first place."

Finally, I didn't insist on not using the images simply because the terms say not to reverse-engineer, etc. I asserted that the fact that the terms are against it outweights that the purpose is informational; I applied it as something to consider in a fair use dispute. To rephrase my last sentence, I assert that the nature of the use, being a breech in contract, outweighs that the purpose of the use is to provide new information, thereby making it an unfair use. Leftiness 15:10, April 25, 2010 (UTC)

.... your whole argument is consistently flawed. A user breaching one part of the ToS is not legal grounds for Jagex voiding the entire contract, when that user does so under the protection of the law.--Agamemnus 16:33, April 25, 2010 (UTC)
Unauthorised access to RuneScape servers is covered in far more legislation. If it's accessing a server without Jagex' authorisation and downloading content then it's illegal and no amount of fair-use rational is enough to save you King Runite1 12:39, April 26, 2010 (UTC)
Really? Really? You are also consistently taking wild leaps of logic here. "Unauthorized"? Really? The only reason it MIGHT download fresh content off the server (verify it?) is to keep the cache updated. If you tweak the code and make it not update the cache from a fresh one off the server, the RSMV would access what you already have stored on your PC. It's downloading content just like any other user is downloading content. In no way is it "unauthorized", because everyone has access to it. --Agamemnus 20:01, April 26, 2010 (UTC)
Using RSMV to access Jagex's servers and download content would be illegal. You are not downloading the content in order to play the game, so you are not downloading it for an authorised usage. Hence:
"unauthorised access to computer material, punishable by 6 months' imprisonment or a fine 'not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale' (currently £5000)". - Computer Misuse Act 1990
Britain has extradition treaties with America - pretty good ones actually ([2]). --King Runite1 20:54, April 27, 2010 (UTC)
Nope. You are confusing being able to download the content and the use of the content. To have authorized access of the content, all you need is to request the data from the servers. "Unauthorized" access means that you are somehow deceiving Jagex via either security loopholes in their code or via fake credentials into giving yourself access that a normal person on the street would not have. Jagex cannot control how you use the content unless you are re-distributing that very content (which is not the same as redistributing renders of the content). For an excellent intro, please read Robert's post a bit below. Also, I just gotta say, but I can't let you get away with adding any sort of British law into the discussion here, seemingly used as a scaremongering tactic. The law in question is US copyright law, not any British law of any kind.--Agamemnus 04:10, April 28, 2010 (UTC)

Afterthought - Having thought more on point 1 way at the top, hear me out. The cache is compressed in a proprietary format; RSMV was written by people who were reverse-engineering Runescape to make private servers. If the cache was simply a .zip archive (etc) renamed to .dat2, I assert that the reverse-engineerers would not have taken the time to write a program to decompress the cache; they wrote a lot of code. The only way to decompress something that's been compressed with a proprietary format is to decompress it with that proprietary format. Therefore, RSMV uses Jagex's Java applet model loading code, right? It is, afterall, a reverse-engineered product. Leftiness 15:21, April 25, 2010 (UTC)

Wrong, all wrong. The RSMV doesn't necessarily use Jagex's Java applet loading code. What's the point, though?--Agamemnus 16:33, April 25, 2010 (UTC)
The question isn't how the program came about, it's whether it constitutes an access control circumvention mechanism as defined in the DMCA. Agamemnus has said categorically that the models are not protected by DRM, as a fact but has not provided one shred of evidence as to why. Others of us have argued that it might constitute an access control mechanism as defined by the DMCA, and we've explained why. Perhaps Agamemnus would like to support his stance with reason and evidence? Endasil (Talk) @  17:10, April 25, 2010 (UTC)
Because, Endasil, 'DRM specifically requires a key and encryption to unlock content. A non-public format does not qualify as "DRM"'.--Agamemnus 19:16, April 25, 2010 (UTC)
I've shown you exactly how the DMCA defines control access mechanisms, and it says nothing about a key and encryption (and for about the 8th time, it doesn't use the term "DRM"). Please cite your sources since I have cited mine. Endasil (Talk) @  20:19, April 25, 2010 (UTC)
Your very own quote: "that effectively controls access". Nothing in the RS cache effectively controls access. For it to effectively control access, a key and encryption are needed.--Agamemnus 03:39, April 26, 2010 (UTC)
Again, I say that's not true. If they wanted to limit the law to encrypted data they would have said that it is limited to encrypted data. But you might notice by reading the DMCA that they don't restrict it to a key and encryption; they don't even mention encryption specifically. So please read the definition that I posted earlier. Endasil (Talk) @  04:10, April 26, 2010 (UTC)
Aw heck I'll just regurgitate it for you so you're forced to read it.
(B) a technological measure “effectively controls access to a work” if the measure, in the ordinary course of its operation, requires the application of information, or a process or a treatment, with the authority of the copyright owner, to gain access to the work.
So please point out where they specifically mention a key and encryption, and why you don't think (with some legal justification) a proprietary, secret format falls under that definition. Endasil (Talk) @  04:13, April 26, 2010 (UTC)
Right here: "a technological measure “effectively controls access to a work” if the measure, in the ordinary course of its operation, requires the application of information, or a process or a treatment, with the authority of the copyright owner, to gain access to the work." It does not require "the application of information, or a process or a treatment, with the authority of the copyright owner, to gain access to the work." to access the RS cache. --Agamemnus 19:58, April 26, 2010 (UTC)
It does in the ordinary course of its operation. a part of the clause that you conveniently seem to ignore. Endasil (Talk) @  20:04, April 26, 2010 (UTC)
No it doesn't!--Agamemnus 20:07, April 26, 2010 (UTC)
So everything from start to end uses open protocols? If so, that just comes down to difference of information about the model format. Others have previously said that they use a proprietary format which is what I was assuming. Again, please cite your sources so that I have some confidence you're not just making this up. Endasil (Talk) @  21:23, April 26, 2010 (UTC)
Whether or not it is proprietary is irrelevant to whether or not the use of RSMV images on the RS Wiki is "fair use", and I don't see how it is linked to your assertion that the "authority of the copyright owner" means more "the express mechanical permission (using a credentials check) of the copyright owner". Jagex does not check whether you have credentials to access the cache, because you don't need to enter credentials (such as a key) to access the cache.--Agamemnus 04:20, April 28, 2010 (UTC)
If anyone here understands Delphi, they could download the source code and check that. I believe the relevant code is in FileRSM.pas. Downloading the cache simply requires decompressing it with a standard web compression algorithm, GZip. In fact, MediaWiki (the software that runs most wikis) probably is configured to send GZipped content. ⁓ Hello71 21:54, April 27, 2010 (UTC)
I had previously tried gzip amongst many other compression formats to decompress the cache. The cache (.dat*, .idx*) is not in Gzip format. Endasil (Talk) @  00:36, April 28, 2010 (UTC)
Read: "Downloading the cache simply...GZip"... ⁓ Hello71 01:21, April 28, 2010 (UTC)

Split

Comment - Agamenus, please re-read the part of my argument you called consistently flawed. I asked Endasil which part of the terms of service he thinks violates a law. If a terms of service does violate a law, then the contract is voided, and there's no trouble. However, since I'm of the belief that the contract does not violate any laws, if you break the contract, you break the contract, and the nature of the use being a breech of contract is something to consider in a fair use dispute.

Why is everything I said wrong, especially when your entire refuting argument is "What's the point, though?" The point of them writing RSMV was to extract models from the cache for use in private servers. If the compression format were public, free, whatever you want to call it, they wouldn't have needed to write a program. As I said, I've got RSMV.rar sitting in my downloads folder, and I've seen all the code they wrote. If the cache were public, free, etc, they could just extract it with WinZIP or some other tool. RSMV is the only tool of its kind, created by people who reverse-engineered Runescape to create it. By definition, something that is written with reverse-engineered code is written with the same code as the product that was reverse-engineered, hence I assert that your first point at the very top is refuted.

I'd like to restate that Jagex could file a takedown notice for any part of our website, and, if we disagree, then we would be in court with a fair use dispute, whether or not it is actually a fair use. In an obvious case, the decision would be made quickly, but, regardless, judges decide cases, not defendants. Leftiness 20:53, April 25, 2010 (UTC)

Please correct me if I'm wrong here, but I think your argument essentially boils down to two arguments:
  • Fair use doesn't apply to visual content that has been generated with illegally distributed software.
  • Jagex is likely to name those who upload content from the RSMV as defendants in a copyright infringement case, and will also ban their accounts on Runescape if their account names can be somehow traced to the users associated with that uploading.
As for the second point, unless there is a Jagex sock puppet already involved with these discussions (aka their relationship to Jagex has not been disclosed), there is no indication that Jagex is going to be taking any action of any kind against those who are using the model viewer or even if those images are uploaded to this wiki. The request to remove these images has not originated from Jagex, and to the best of my knowledge there hasn't even been so much as even an informal request to take these images down. There have been informal requests to remove other content from this wiki, so presumably if this was an issue there would be at least some official commentary on this issue too. The lack of action on the part of Jagex doesn't make this right, but suggesting that something may happen when nothing is happening is being sort of disingenuous. There are certainly several steps that can be taken well before anybody has to see the inside of a court room.
Getting back to the first point: I contend that the source of the fair use images is immaterial to its status as a legal fair-use image. I know this is a point of disagreement, and really where all of the rest of the words and the nature of this dispute really lies. I've pointed out the actual law, and it is on this point that some sort of resolution needs to happen.
Significantly, it is not just that fair use is happening, but how it is used that matters significantly too in terms of fair-use applications of any content. It is for that reason I am proposing allowing some of these images to be on this wiki, but for that scope to be very narrowly defined in such a way that would be significantly more restricted than images from other sources that are considered "more legal". This is where I'm trying to move consensus, and why I think a completely blanket ban on these images is over the top. The legal status of the RSMV is really immaterial to this discussion unless some legal precedent can be provided that any supposedly fair-use material is always illegal if the means for how it was obtained in the first place was also illegal. Since this is a free speech issue as well, it would be very hard to hold up that all forms of fair use are banned.
If all forms of fair use are prohibited, what exactly is fair use again? I note here that nearly all images on this wiki are used according to fair-use, so an argument against fair use is essentially an argument to cull nearly all images from this wiki. How are we moving forward in this discussion? --Robert Horning 23:46, April 25, 2010 (UTC)
I still agree that the methods used to obtain the images are irrelevant to the question of presenting the images. But I think it's still an important discussion. Can an American Wikian obtain the images legally? I'm not American, but the case of Dmitry Sklyarov shows that the U.S. is more than willing to arrest somebody who broke the DMCA while abroad (and I plan on travelling to the States again in my lifetime). Plus, I think using the RSMV is just bad business in general; it gives little to the Wiki and just pisses people off, nevermind leading to long arguments like this one. So I'm not going to get the images. And I don't want a fellow Wikian to be prosecuted under this joke of a law. So even though it's not relevant to the Wiki's legal responsibilities, I do think it is relevant to discuss the legality of getting the images. By the way, on an unrelated note, if you're not American and you despise the DMCA for its non-consumer-centric provisions, lobby your local congressman to pass the DMCRA. Endasil (Talk) @  04:25, April 26, 2010 (UTC)
While the FBI was willing to arrest Dmitry Sklyarov, it is significant that all charges against him were eventually dropped and that the whole thing regarding his arrest was mostly a political stunt rather than something serious in terms of law enforcement. It sort of stinks if you are the target of such a political attack, but it can and does happen. What was even more ironic was the kind of "encryption" used by Sklyarov to decode the content he was using in the example.... which was the ROT-13 encryption method as used by Adobe Systems. Yeah, that was a real difficult and complicated task to complete and really turned the whole case into a free speech issue which is what was the ultimate failure of the whole prosecution. This is an excellent case to cite in terms of frivolous prosecution and perhaps even prosecutorial malpractice. Don't fear coming to the USA because of this sort of extreme case, and note that politically motivated prosecutions happen in almost any country. Just ask Jon Johansen what he thought of the Norwegian prosecution for reverse engineering that was certainly much more involved than solving a ROT-13 encryption. Even in that case, Johansen was ultimately acquitted. It is notable that most high profile reverse engineering prosecutions usually have this sort of end result.
There really has yet to be a strong constitutional challenge to the DMCA, at least so far as the anti-circumvention provisions of that act are concerned. A potential test case that is clear cut in terms of the use of decryption for interoperability certainly hasn't happened, but I think the model viewer software might just be the perfect software to test the legal precedence of the issue. In other words, if Jagex decided to go that route to press charges against somebody using the model viewer, it would likely get widespread attention and become a major test case with all sorts of electronic freedom activist coming out of the woodwork to help with the defense. It certainly would not be a slam-dunk for Jagex even if they decided to press the issue and seek to shut down the developers of the software. Also note here that the prosecution is going after the actual developers of the software and not the end-users merely installing and using the software, which is a huge difference as well.
Regardless of the legality, it clearly is possible to use the model viewer, so it isn't anything that I would call exotic hardware that is sometimes required to access protected content, if this can even be considered protected content. In addition, it is certainly possible for the model viewer to be used in another country where the use of that model viewer is legal, and then have images from that software posted in a public place that would in turn be uploaded to the wiki. We are not talking about using, providing instructions for its use, linking to, or distributing the model viewer. All this conversation is really about is the use of images that are done as a screen capture from the use of this software. These images have already been posted on several player forums and other fansites, so I'm not even asking for members of the wiki community to be even using the software at all, but merely to have the ability to use images created elsewhere. --Robert Horning 13:28, April 26, 2010 (UTC)
Leftiness.. (1) Something very basic: A programmer doesn't have to use someone's loading code to load the same format that the loading code is loading. But if they do, so what? That's what I meant by "What's the point, though?" (2) "If the cache were public, free, etc, they could just extract it with WinZIP or some other tool." "Public", "free", and "non-encrypted" have three very different meanings. The cache loading code is "not public", its contents are "free", and its loading method is "non-encrypted". I simply can't reason with you if you cannot differentiate between these three. --Agamemnus 03:39, April 26, 2010 (UTC)
The DMCA covers more than just encryption. Free in price has nothing to do with it. It's certainly not free as in speech. And since Jagex own the copyright to the contents and the file format, the contents certainly isn't in the public domain. King Runite1 12:34, April 26, 2010 (UTC)
Actually this is a free speech issue here. The "freedom" to be able to perform critical commentary and to discuss issues related to the use of this kind of software is directly impacted by the ability to at least demonstrate what it is that everybody is talking about. For this reason invoking the DMCA for what may be a constitutional question for free speech will likely backfire with anybody trying to prosecute for the use of images that otherwise fit within the existing legal constraints for fair use. It is for this reason I contend there do exist clear-cut legal uses of images from the model viewer. Not all uses of those images are legal, but there are legal uses that can be made. --Robert Horning 13:41, April 26, 2010 (UTC)
Fair use has limits though. And even if you are legally correctly, Wikia may not wait for that to be proved in a lawsuit before it takes action. My example was to show that action is taken regardless of the actual legal truth. In addition pre-released content from the RSMV in fair use would seem to potientially "Effect upon work's value" - a key criteria for fair use. In addition, the Wikia would have to state it's sources - in all likelihood by providing the RSMV. As soon as you do this, you succumb to the potiential for suits related to the RSMV as opposed to the potientially fairly used images created from it. I think we are pushing a product which is legally questionable for little value. Accepting RSMV images will also remove our new silver-status of course. --King Runite1 21:03, April 27, 2010 (UTC)
Wikia doesn't have to state sources...... We, as contributors need to state precisely what sources of the information we used to obtained the images. If you look through the image database (and I'll admit I'm among those who have contributed), there is a general presumption that the images come from the regular Java user client interface that Jagex provides for playing the game. Clearly any sort of policy regarding the use of images from other sources, including the RSMV, would have to have those images clearly marked. That is in fact one of the key points I would love to see in such a policy. BTW, what possible "effect upon the work's value" would displaying a spoiler of an upcoming item have that was revealed from the RSMV, and why is that different than speculation on other fansites (including images) or perhaps even the "future updates" section of the official forums? I'm not pushing a product which is questionable, but I am asking where exactly is the law that states that these images are illegal in all possible uses of any kind and why fair use implies that the images can't be used in any way, shape, or form under any circumstance? I simply don't see that in the law at all and in fact copyright law is rather explicit that there are some exceptions to the rule. Again, why doesn't it apply to images from the RSMV, and why is it being asserted that all possible images are illegal? If you think it is illegal, cite the case law or the statutory law! --Robert Horning 15:05, April 28, 2010 (UTC)

Should we be using fair use on this wiki?

One thing that Leftiness has raised is the legitimacy of any sort of fair use on this wiki, and that I do believe to be a fair argument to be making. Keep in mind that images and even musical extracts are used extensively on this wiki under terms of fair use, so this is a far reaching theoretical discussion that goes well beyond merely the application of fair use for images extracted from the model viewer.

The argument against even touching fair use images is a legitimate one, and something that has been raised repeatedly on Wikipedia and other websites that attempt to have "free" (as in speech and beer) content websites, in particular the use of "copyleft" licenses for that content. Even the Wikipedia community itself is quite split on the issue, where the Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees has passsed a resolution essentially saying that all Wikimedia communities must have in place a formal policy stating their position on fair-use and announce the scope limit to that sort of content which is used on that wiki. Some language editions of Wikipedia have simply outright banned all use of fair use in any form, most notably the French language edition of Wikipedia (although that isn't the only one). I'm more familiar with the Wikibooks policy as I was one of the major contributors to that policy, although I'll admit that it was shamelessly copied from the Italian Wikipedia policy with some significant tweaks.

As I've pointed out, nearly all images on this wiki have been uploaded according to the terms of fair use. There certainly are some fuzzy gray areas where perhaps that role is certainly pushing the envelope, but much of what we do is solidly within the scope and standard practice of what amounts to be fair use within the publishing industry.

Perhaps all of this argument could come to some good if we can come up with a general fair use policy for the wiki as a whole, and to help define the scope of fair use images and content in general, without having to get into the specifics of if a display of images from the RSMV is legal or not. Drafting such a policy and coming up with a clear scope limit to any sort of fair use images from any source from Jagex (aka the website, press releases, the user client, and "other sources" to be defined at a later time). Those who have engaged in this discussion so far certainly seem to have a fairly good understanding of copyright law, and this is certainly something we all should be concerned about... including the issues raised earlier by the Leftiness within the context of the information from the Standford University Law School. There are other excellent sources of information for fair use, and defining the scope of fair use on this wiki is something that hopefully we can avoid a completely flame fest over.

I should again note that in spite of the fact that Jagex has in recent years simply granted a license to use several images on fansites, this license certainly doesn't fit any sort of definition of a "free content license" or something that I would assert is not compatible with the CC-by-SA license that is used on this wiki. For this reason, regardless of the licensing terms and the terms of service agreement on the Jagex web pages, I assert that all images on this wiki can only be used under terms of fair use.

Is there anybody interested in helping me to draft such a general policy for this wiki? This would be an agumentation and refinement of RuneScape:Images and media policy addressing explicitly the fair-use principles that we have discussed on this thread so far. --Robert Horning 00:54, April 27, 2010 (UTC)

Question - The RuneScape fansite RuneZone is using content from other fansites. Most notably us, the RuneScape Wiki, for all their image content needs. I ask with this proposal, or our current policy, to clarify whether our files are liable for other fansite use or if an administrator needs to contact the site about plagiarizing other sites work. Ryan PM 01:05, April 27, 2010 (UTC)

Answered on RS:IMP. Ryan PM 01:12, April 27, 2010 (UTC)

Comment - I'd like to drop the issues of actual court and actual prosecution altogether. I've understood since the beginning that it's nearly impossible that Jagex would take legal action. I was only asserting that legal action is possible, and that a judge would decide it. I'd also like to drop the issue of removing all fair use media, as I've never asserted that. Some images, such a screen captures from Jagex's Runescape client, fall indefinitely under fair use: we comment on them, they are published, Jagex loses no money, and so on. However, I disagree that it would be a fair use to use screen captures of cache models on the wiki on the following grounds.

Nature. Here I assert that the legality of RSMV matters. Nature involves traits such as profit or non-profit and published or unpublished; legality is also a trait. We all know that the purpose would be commentary, and we all know that Jagex wouldn't lose any profit, but, in making a decision based on the four factors, the illegality of the software, a black mark in nature, would be considered. I believe it would be considered above purpose, substantiality, and market; it's a big deal. Furthermore, accessing the cache, having uncompressed images, posting those images where others may access them, and so on is breaking the terms of service; it's a breech in contract at some point; somebody broke their contract, and receiving files resulting from a broken contract is not legal. Illegal software coupled with a breech in contract makes for a strong argument on account of nature.

About the file format: I use File Roller. It can open a lot of file formats - .zip, .rar, you name it. File Roller can't open the cache .dat2; can your archiver? Any of you know of another software that opens up the .dat2 in your cache? If it weren't a proprietary format, there would be blatantly legal software out there to do the job... It's a proprietary format, and a technological measure has effectively controlled access to the work in regards to Endasil's definition: The Official Runescape client, with the permission of the copyright owner, is what accesses the work in the ordinary course of operation. The official client applies a process to decompress the cache for ordinary use in the game Runescape. Again, the official client effectively conrols access. The only way people got around it was by reverse-engineering the client. Even if they created a new way to access the cache by reverse-engineering the client, they accessed the cache in a non-ordinary way by applying non-ordinary processes to decompress models without the authority of the copyright owner. I doubt that breaking through an effective control of access makes for legality. Also, Agamenus, I can differentiate between public, free, and non-encrypted, and I'm sure you know what I meant when I said "free, open, whatever you want to call it."


In regards to using screen captures of cache images from other sites, I doubt that "He did it first!" would hold up in trial; again, note that I doubt a trial would occur, but the happenings of a theoretical trial are important. I don't believe that another site's usage of the images is a fair use under the argument of nature, so I don't believe it would be a fair use for us to get the images from the other site.

Finally, what about distribution? Distribution is something that the wiki, as a separate legal entity, can be in trouble for. Anybody with uncompressed images has either breeched his contract, thereby voiding his license, or he never had a license to begin with. Jagex has the right to say who can and can't use their product; it's theirs. I assert that distributing unlicensed media without the permission of the copyright holder is an obvious illegality. Against the argument of fair use, I restate the argument of nature, that breeched contracts, illegal origins, and unlicensed media do not constitute a fair use, regardless of the purpose, substantiality, or market. Leftiness 02:53, April 27, 2010 (UTC)

This is something I would love to have explained to me in some depth and where I get a huge degree of confusion over. I realize there is a sort of "gentleman's agreement" between the various Runescape fansites that each site won't copy each other's content and that screen captures (even from "legal" sources such the official game client from Jagex) and such a policy is even enshrined in formal policy on this wiki. My assertion is that fair use is fair use, and that one website can't have copyright protection over content that is somehow superior in copyright protection over and above the basic copyright protection that Jagex itself has. Yes, there are secondary copyright considerations, but all of this content is copyrighted by Jagex, and there is no unique protection that these other websites have over their own content beyond that, unless the content is completely original.
BTW, I'm not trying to assert "He did it first" defense, but I am asserting that the images are already "out there" and that claiming that the use of these images is a sort of free speech issue where it is important to be able to see what it is that everybody is talking about. I am also trying to get you, Leftiness, to flat out assert that there is no possible legal fair use of any kind possible for the RSMV images and more importantly to try and demonstrate just where the legal status of the software used has any impact over the copyright status and the fair use application for images that are generated from that software. I'm not disputing that the use of the software is a grey area nor am I disputing that Jagex would rather not have these images widely used. I just don't see the legal precedent or any sort of law of any kind that has ever been written about or even suggested in a formal sense (from any legal opinion) that a complete and blanket prohibition of any sort of fair use publication of images is required, and indeed assert that such a legal view is in fact contrary to law and may even be unconstitutional in the USA.
Also, I really want this explained as to why fair use doesn't apply to other images on this wiki? I'm not really trying to assert removing all fair use media, but I would like to try and define the scope of when that media ought to be used and to define the scope of fair use on this wiki. If you don't get it, I'm trying to come to some sort of consensus here and work on some sort of policy, noting that there are certainly applications and uses of images that are happening that violate even the most loose standards of fair use that are happening on this wiki for images from other sources. I would also like to have explained under what possible license we are using the other content from Jagex, why it is compatible with the CC-by-SA license, when that license was granted, and why that is so different that the situation with the RSMV? --Robert Horning 12:15, April 27, 2010 (UTC)
No, Leftiness, a proprietary loading mechanism is not an access control measure. An access control measure needs to be able to control who gets access to the file. Let's consider the simple case of me creating a Word-like format where I save characters starting from the last byte in the file instead of the first. No regular program would be able to open it because I made a proprietary loading mechanism that isn't revealed in neither the extension of the file name or (presumably) in some sort of file header. That does not make it an access control measure, and neither does the format of the Jagex cache.--Agamemnus 04:28, April 28, 2010 (UTC)


"Jagex has the right to say who can and can't use their product; it's theirs", and yet they cannot take it from us as they dont know whos using it. Third age robe top.png 3rd age farcaster Third age druidic robe top.png 12:34, April 27, 2010 (UTC)

The whole point of fair use is that copyright is not absolute, and that it can't completely close off all discussion of or stop the pulling of examples and samples from that original content to be used in formal discussions about that copyrighted content. There certainly are organizations who would like you to think that they can control who can make such commentary, but that sort of control is not found in law and is more perceived rather than some sort of actual control which can be backed up by the force of law. And copyright is much more narrowly controlled than that. All Jagex can do is to limit or control to whom the copyrighted content can be distributed. Copyright isn't a usage control law, it is a distribution control law. That is a huge difference.
For example, with a book the publisher doesn't have any sort of rights to control how I use that book. If I legally purchased the book, I can loan it to a friend, put it in a private (or public) lending library, sell it to another friend, use it as toilet paper, a way to fix my table or chair by putting it under a leg, cut pages from it and use it as wall paper or even on the siding of my house, or even burn it. A publisher has no rights to control how that book is used or what happens to it after it has come into my possession. The same is true about computer software, where in particular the "first sale doctrine" (the ability to re-sell copyrighted content legally purchased through other means) has been re-affirmed as applying to computer software as well. Copyright controls the ability to duplicate and redistribute the content, not how it is used. Even duplication isn't expressly prohibited, but such duplication must be kept to myself and not given to others.
Fair use covers all of this and even lists specific applications for how content can be legally duplicated, on a limited scale, even in a for-profit and commercial application. It is the scope of this duplication that this whole thread is covering, and how it applies to this wiki. --Robert Horning 14:10, April 27, 2010 (UTC)

Comment - I don't care if people borrow images from other fansites against a gentleman's agreement. Personally, I think it's an awful thing to do, but it's not even possibly a legal issue.

Now, seeing what everyone is talking about fulfills the purpose section of a fair use. I've agreed that using RSMV images would benefit the wiki and wiki viewers in regards to commentary and criticism. However, I've asserted that the nature, involving breeched contracts, illegal origins, and unlicensed media distribution, effectively trumps the purpose. In detail, I've put forward that breaking the terms of service is a breech in contract, using reverse-engineered software to get images constitutes an illegal origin, and hosting those images on our wiki would be distributing unlicensed media. I feel as though these things make a strong argument against it being a fair use on account of the nature of the use.

Fair use does apply to other images on the wiki; we are using most of our images as fair uses. We comment on them, they are screenshots of released content taken from the official client that we have permission to use, Jagex loses no profit, and so on; most of our uses fulfill purpose, nature, substantiality, and market. I restate that the issue is nature, not purpose, substantiality, or market.

As I've already stated, I'm willing to work to remove copyright violations, meaning unfair uses, from this wiki, including copyrighted images in signatures, the logo, and so on. I feel as though discussing more than one major issue at once will lead to an unfocussed and thereby inefficient discussion.

In regards to my quote "It's theirs:" yes, it is theirs, and, in the terms of service, a contract, it states that to have a license to have the Jagex Products you must make an account and uphold the contract. Distributing unlicensed files which require a breech in contract to access is a further breech in contract. I pointed out that breeching the contract makes a black mark in the nature of the use.

Again, I state that I do not argue against using RSMV images because I believe that copyright is a total control. I restate that you are only allowed to use copyrighted material without the owner's permission if it is a fair use, and, as I've said, I don't believe it would be a fair use on account of nature. Leftiness 20:12, April 27, 2010 (UTC)

I have brought up several infringing applications of fair use on this wiki (content that clearly is not fair use), including the official wiki logo, the use of images from the game in signatures, and some overly broad application of the use of some images for mere decoration. None of this is fair-use, and I've also raised some issues about violations of textual fair-use on this wiki on other forums. It is a huge problem and shows a decided ignorance of the law on the part of a great number of people who are involved with administering and maintaining this wiki.
Again, I ask what license has been given by Jagex that is compatible with the CC-by-SA license that this wiki is administered under that allows us to use any of this content, including the other images you are asserting here? You claim that fair use doesn't apply to the other images.... how so? Again, what is that license if it is with permission?
More significantly, I'm trying to reach consensus here and try and work in a new direction, as we are addressing the topic of fair use. I was trying to avoid even dealing with the RSMV images for now, but instead try to address the other images and their usage on this wiki. I am also asking for consistency here, and if the law is being invoked to delete content, that law should be applied evenly and consistently and not where it is merely convenient to do so. Again, what is the license that we have "permission" to copy and duplicate these images? --Robert Horning 01:54, April 28, 2010 (UTC)

Comment - I support removing all unfair uses, as I've said, including the logo, images in sigs, and dialogue pages. I'm sure there's more; I think the news on the front page needs some sort of news commentary to make it a fair use.

No license has been given by Jagex, but I haven't asserted that all of our image uses are unfair uses. Again, most of our uses are, in my opinion, fair because we comment, they're published, they're screen captures from the offical Runescape client which we have permission to use, they are unsubstantial in comparison to the entire game, and Jagex loses no profit in our use. As such, most of our images are fair uses, and we have the right to use them fairly.

Similarly, in using cache images, we would comment, they are unsubstantial, and Jagex loses no profit. However, I've based my opposition on the nature of the use, in that breeched contracts, illegal origins, and distribution of unlicensed media effectively trump purpose, substantiality, and market. Because of this, I assert that using cache images, even screen captures of cache images, would not be a fair use. This is especially so because market and substantiality seem to be weak supporting arguments in this case; the purpose, that we would be commenting on them to provide new information, is the major supporting argument; I feel as though purpose, substantiality, and market are dwarfed in the presence of the opposing nature argument.

Again, I completely support consistency in copyright law enforcement, and all law enforcement, as shown here. Please note that I've decided not to pursue discussing the linked topic right now, as I'm of the belief that we should focus on one major copyright issue at once. Also note that I don't believe any copyright issue to be more important than any other. Leftiness 00:10, April 29, 2010 (UTC)

(1) breeched contracts
It is not a breach of contract when the contract is invalid to begin with. A contract that does not account for fair use is not valid as it applies to fair use. Essentially, cause and effect are reversed in your argument. You're saying "because the argument for fair use apparently breaches the contract, it diminished the argument for fair use."
(2) illegal origins
You have yet to prove that content which we have at our disposal on our PCs is of an "illegal origin" or even to show how any applicable law of your so-called "illegal origins". All your arguments that opening the cache files and reading the data in some way other than the Runescape Java applet (the one served up by Jagex) have been countered.
(3) distribution of unlicensed media
Again, (a) images of 3D objects are not "unlicensed distribution of media [finishing for you: owned by Jagex]", they are potentially derivative images which, if they were images of actual real life objects, would actually be in most cases copyrightable in and of themselves. (b) Assuming, let's say, that these images were directly scanned from the cache (instead of being saved by a screenshot program after opening a model viewer of the 3D object cache), you are again creating a circular argument: "Jagex didn't give us permission to post these images on the wiki, so they don't qualify for fair use." Except, of course, "fair use" applies to items which by definition don't gain official permission for distribution or display!--Agamemnus 07:04, April 30, 2010 (UTC)

Comment - Breached Contracts. The breached contracts argument is based on the fact that the terms say not to reverse engineer the cache and not to transfer the cache to one who hasn't agreed to the contract. Therefore, anybody in possession of the unlocked cache images has breeched the contract or received the files from someone who breached the contract and thereby has no license to have them. Using any third-party software on a Jagex Product is also a breach in contract. Note that third-party software like SwiftKit load Jagex's Java app, which they permit us to do.

Illegal Origins. You asserted that a proprietary loading mechanism does not make for an access control measure. I disagree per Endasil's quote: "(B) a technological measure “effectively controls access to a work” if the measure, in the ordinary course of its operation, requires the application of information, or a process or a treatment, with the authority of the copyright owner, to gain access to the work." Providing that you reserved your rights, your example of a loading mechanism which loads a Word-like format from the last byte to the first effectively controls the access, as, in the ordinary course of its operation, it requires the application of the process that is your loading mechanism to gain access to the work. The cache is in a proprietary format, requiring, in its ordinary use, the application of the process that is Jagex's official loading mechanism to gain access to the work. Reverse-engineering Jagex's proprietary loading mechanism to create RSMV is not the ordinary operation, and making RSMV by reverse-engineering is illegal in the first place, per Endasil's quote of title 17 at the top.

Distribution of Unlicensed Media. First, saving the images with a screenshot program after opening a model viewer of the 3d object is the same as directly scanning the image from the cache; you're just converting it to .png. Photographs of real-life objects are copyrightable, provided you're allowed to take pictures. In this case, you aren't allowed to take pictures. You aren't even allowed to see the models, per breach in contract and reverse-engineering. Also, it isn't just that Jagex didn't give us permission: Fair Use applies to cases in which no official statement has been made, and, in this case, they've said no. That matters. Leftiness 21:35, April 30, 2010 (UTC)

Again, I ask what "licensed media" are we using? You can't have your cake and eat it too, so there is inconsistency here when on one hand an insistence upon obtaining a license in once case and then no license is needed in another. I'm not asking that we willy nilly plaster images from the RSMV, but I am trying to assert that a complete and blanket ban on the images is unreasonable as well and can't be supported through law. I assert and claim that all media on this wiki, with the exception of "fan art" uploaded by individual users (surprisingly banned by policy.... which I really don't understand either) is completely unlicensed. Every single image on this wiki is by policy explicitly unlicensed media with copyright belonging to somebody else, and most of that is copyrighted by Jagex. I've tried to upload "free content" in the form of images available under the terms of the CC-by-SA, and had them promptly deleted by other admins too.
The "illegal origins" issue may in fact be the only legitimate argument here, but again I'm trying to note that I can't find any sort of argument in the form of a legal precedence, statutory law, or even a scholarly opinion from something like a law journal that asserts all forms of fair use are prohibited completely if the source came from perhaps a less than savory source. The format of that content is completely irrelevant, and what we are talking about is a derivative work anyway. The issue of the legal consequences for the creation of the RSMV fall upon the authors who wrote that software, not the end-users of the software and certainly not somebody who is a tertiary user who merely is making public commentary about a screen shot from that software.
Again, the breached contract doesn't apply here either, as we are again talking about a tertiary use of something that is already available and widely disseminated, where again it is the authors of the RSMV that must face the consequences and not necessarily the end user of the software, and certainly not somebody who has through other means obtained screenshots from that software. There is no contract that applies here. The contract violations, if there are any (and I'm not even buying the argument that a contract was violated in the first place by the RSMV authors, but that is irrelevant to this discussions), are the legal liability of the RSMV authors alone. For end-users here on this wiki who are not even using the RSMV software but merely viewing a screenshot of that software, or for editors to an article that happens to have that image, there are zero legal consequences.
This isn't to say that some violations of fair use can happen with these images, but again, why the complete blanket ban on these images and claiming that fair use doesn't apply in any way, manner, or form? That is what is being asserted here, as if fair use doesn't even exist at all. It is that point I'm protesting, and claiming those who insist that all possible images from the RSMV should be immediately deleted are simply going over the top and making an argument that is not founded in law but instead on some strange sort of ethics that has developed over the years within the Runescape player community, and people making up laws that simply don't exist.
While somebody who owns the copyright on an image can ask that you not use an image, the application for fair use is completely irrelevant in terms of that request. Besides, where is it that Jagex has demanded that all screenshots from the RSMV from all fansites ought to be removed? I have never seen that request, only that players should avoid the software (for valid reasons) and that it shouldn't be discussed on the official forums.
More explicitly and to the point, I do not believe nor can I find in any sort of formal opinion about fair use law that the legal status of a piece of software has any impact of any kind on the fair use applications of screenshots from that software. --Robert Horning 13:45, May 1, 2010 (UTC)

Comment - I realize that I got ahead of myself, and I apologize. Distribution of unlicensed media is an act which can only be committed if the media is proven not a fair use, so it can't be a determining factor in whether the use is fair. I restate that I believe most of our images fall under fair use; therefore the unlicensed aspect doesn't matter in most cases, as fair use trumps it. However, I've asserted that the cache images do not fall under fair use, due to breached contracts and illegal origins.

I agree that no legal consequences can befall the viewers of cache images on the wiki, and no legal consequences can befall editors who were not involved in posting the images. Per title 17, the editors who committed the illegal act of reverse-engineering the cache with the illegal software RSMV may suffer consequences, the makers of RSMV may face consequences for making RSMV, and, I assert, the wiki, as a separate legal entity, may suffer consequences for distributing media of illegal origins; would it not fall under vicarious liability, in that the wiki would be permitting and condoning the violation of law by accepting images known to be gained from reverse-engineering? On a common sense basis, do you think it would make sense for it to be illegal to gain something but not illegal to distribute it? Do you think that, theoretically, a judge, as the decision-maker in a fair use dispute, would rule it legal to distribute media of illegal origin?

The breached contract certainly applies to anybody who accessed the cache or obtained cache images. Somewhere along the line, somebody breached his contract in accessing the cache or in transferring it to someone else for accessing, and the wiki, as a separate legal entity, may face consequences for distributing media of breached-contract origin. I understand that the consequences would most likely be a takedown notice, but that is a consequence, and breached-contract origin certainly applies to nature in a fair use dispute. Again, this is not something that viewers or editors would face consequences for; even an editor who accessed the cache and uploaded the images may not face consequences, as it is impossible for Jagex to detect who breached the contract; it is an act committed by the wiki as a separate legal entity.

I assert that Jagex insists we not use the cache images because their terms state not to reverse-engineer the Jagex Product. The copyright owner asking you not to use copyrighted material is an additional factor to add weight to the illegal origin and breached-contract origin arguments.

I am not opposing this as if fair use did not exist at all; I am asserting that this would not be a fair use, and, the further I get into it, it may be illegal despite fair use. Also, I admit that I am ethically inclined not to use the cache images, but I am founding my arguments on law to the best of my ability. Consider any argument of mine that is based solely on ethics to be void, but remember that a judge may rule a fair use dispute unfair based solely on ethics. Leftiness 16:18, May 1, 2010 (UTC)

I don't think you really understand what reverse engineering really is. Those who are using the RSMV as end-users, not as developers, are not doing any sort of reverse engineering, therefore no contract is breeched. It is the software developers who may, and I'm not even certain if even that is true, face the consequences of a DMCA lawsuit that would also very likely garner a whole lot of attention as it is really some untried law on this particular issue. Merely using the software is not reverse engineering at all. The reverse engineering has already been done. An argument on behalf of the developers is for inter-operability... aka to constructively view the images to find out what is on our own computers. The use of a model viewer to incorporate those images in a Runescape clone is indeed a violation of copyright, but this is not being used for such purposes.
Again, Jagex has not insisted on anything here. Where, please, has Jagex asked for administrators and/or Wikia to remove these images from the wiki? They have not asked us to take them away, and the request as it was from the "j-mods" was to refrain from commentary on the official forums. In addition, they asked that users not search for nor download this software because it might contain malware that could cause other problems for somebody using that software. As such, it is a prudent warning, but again nowhere did Jagex make a formal request for us nor anybody else to remove these images. The request has not been made.
Fair use is about free speech, and 1st amendment rights. It is about being able to constructively write about and to offer legitimate criticism about a product or company... and that including writing journalistic articles or game guides that offer insight into how the product is used. That is precisely how it can be used on this wiki, but it must be put into such a context. A complete blanket ban on any possible use of these images constitutes a breech of constitutional free speech, and makes a complete mockery of fair use in general. While certainly there are some defined limits, where does it say such a complete ban on images must happen, or that Jagex has requested such a ban? --Robert Horning 05:39, May 2, 2010 (UTC)

Reaching Consensus

I think the issue of the legality of the software has been beat into the ground sufficiently. It's irrelevant to the question of what to do with images that are obtained from it. Further, I think we've shown that regardless of whether the cache is protected by an access-control mechanism, the DMCA does not apply to cases where the goal is to reproduce something under fair use. I think we can proceed, and would like to lay out guidelines for using images from the RSMV:

  • The images must be verifiable. Verifiability is an integral part of our Wiki since we perform original research. With typical images derived from screenshots, it's quite obvious that verifying comes through popping open your game client and seeing for yourself. With the RSMV, particularly with unreleased items, we will be dubious at best about such images. An image from the RSMV must be accompanied with a reasonable set of steps for an arbitrary (but willing) editor to verify its authenticity (assuming they know how to use the RSMV at a basic level). We might want to note to such editors that doing so may cause repercussive action by Jagex.
  • The images must be used under fair use. It's not just good enough to plop up anything we want from the RSMV. We need to be able to provide commentary on it as well. The definition we use for fair use should come from an essay/policy that has yet to be written by Robert and any help he gets. This goes for all images really, but is made explicit here because Jagex is much more likely to assert copyright over potentially controversial images.
  • The RSMV must be cited as the source without promoting the use of the RSMV itself. We don't want as a community to appear to endorse the use of such a product. Addendum, 19:22, May 2, 2010 (UTC): When the image is included in an article (particularly when the article is of a released feature) the image's caption must acknowledge the source as the RSMV.
  • It shouldn't be used when the game client can be reasonably used instead. This is more of a "good-business" type of guideline but not necessarily a strict rule. If there is a less controversial way to get basically the same thing (maybe from a slightly more conventional angle, for example) it should be used. That's just good business.

What do people think of the above? Endasil (Talk) @  07:12, May 2, 2010 (UTC)

I would like to go one step further, and make this more like how Wikipedia applies fair use: On every image there must also be an explicit rationale for why and what circumstances under fair use that the image is being used. This applies to every page for which the image is being used. While this would be an onerous task for all images from the wiki, I'm willing to consider that it is vitally important here with the RSMV, and that fair use applications should be perhaps even more narrowly scoped. An example of this can be found from this page: wikipedia:File:The Red Tower.jpg
The list of rationale used for fair use can also be similarly restricted, and that any new fair use rational must be achieved through a consensus process similar to this policy that we are adapting here as well. We can argue about specific rationale that we as a community would find acceptable, but it would have to be grounded firmly in terms of some sort of legal rationale that could be used in court. At the very least, we should use at a minimum the standards as they exist on the English Wikipedia in terms of what rationale can be used for the image. Having put fair-use images on Wikipedia before, I am speaking from experience that the admins there treat fair use very seriously and will not hesitate to delete stuff that violates fair use principles. We can and should be similarly vigalent here on this wiki for the same reasons.
I don't mind that images which are suspected as coming from the model viewer (due to colors being slightly off or being too high in resolution or some other aspect that bring suspicion to it) but that assertion is not made as a reason for deleting the image. Again, images from the model viewer shouldn't be used in any old situation, but there can be some legal and legitimate uses of the images.
Significantly, I'd like this standard to apply to all images which do not come from the official game client. These are standards that should apply to images from the Jagex website and from other fansites in general, or even from sources like a news article or something that displays an aspect about Runescape (there are several potential images in this respect I can think of too). I think it is a reasonable standard that the bulk of the images on this site ought to come from the official game client, and that at least philosophically should continue to be the goal of this project. --Robert Horning 18:19, May 2, 2010 (UTC)
I agree. I think we should take a baby-steps approach and focus on the RSMV for now, and once we have defined our list of acceptable fair use rationale we can start to apply that to non-game client images later. So I think the next step must be to make that fair use policy. I'm willing to collaborate with you on that. Should we get a draft started? Endasil (Talk) @  18:43, May 2, 2010 (UTC)
Comment- im not interested in all the legal stuff, but this is how i see it: the cache images would have their own article, in which every single non-ingame image would be. items such as dungeoneering hood would link to that article, or to a spacific picture. i dont want cache images invading articles and replacing normal pics, so id like it if they where kept on that article. due to the speculative nature of that article, i suggest it has a tag at the top warning about the fact that we can only speculate on what the images are of. if an image is so strange we cannot tell what it is at all, it would just have a "unknown" or something similar label. thoughts on that idea? Third age robe top.png 3rd age farcaster Third age druidic robe top.png 18:39, May 2, 2010 (UTC)
Actually I think that would violate fair use more than using the image on the article to which it is related. Having just a gallery of RSMV images is not justifiable under fair use. For us to use them, they must be supporting commentary or providing an educational and irreplacable role, so really they must be in those articles to fulfill that purpose. But I don't see it being a big deal, since the 4th guideline I've listed should basically limit the RSMV to articles which are dubious in nature; such as unreleased items. Those usually carry loads of forewarnings. But maybe we could add a requirement that any RSMV image used must have in the caption an indication that the RSMV is the source? Endasil (Talk) @  18:43, May 2, 2010 (UTC)
yes, that would be good. what about articles that we cannot tell what they are? also, would it allow a catagory: rsmv images? Third age robe top.png 3rd age farcaster Third age druidic robe top.png 18:48, May 2, 2010 (UTC)
Personally, if we cannot tell what they are I don't think it's notable enough to be on the Wiki and probably wouldn't fall under fair use. That would be like posting random bits of (copyrighted) game code and saying "I don't know what this does, but I'm going to post it here anyway". That may need more discussion though. And yes, I think a category would be in order. Endasil (Talk) @  19:18, May 2, 2010 (UTC)
well, if there was to be a dragon kitesheild with spikes, would we just assume thats how the dragon kite will look, or will we assume its a dragon spikesheild? and it seems like whoever made these laws is just trying to annoy us.. -.-.. should we move 4 a vote?Third age robe top.png 3rd age farcaster Third age druidic robe top.png 20:48, May 2, 2010 (UTC)
If we can't tell what it is with a reasonable degree of certainty, I'd have to refer to RS:NOT#CRYSTAL. Fair use does not give us the right to distribute absolutely anything we see fit. If we can't fit it into the legal framework of fair use, we shouldn't be using it. Endasil (Talk) @  21:45, May 2, 2010 (UTC)

Question - What about the fact that using images from the model viewer failed to gain a consensus multiple times? Are we going to ignore those discussions? --LiquidTalk 20:56, May 2, 2010 (UTC)

To be honest, a lot of that discussion took place while I wasn't too active. But my thinking is, if it doesn't violate Wiki policy, real laws, and provides benefit to the Wiki, it would take consensus to prohibit such images since the default stance would of course be to allow it. Was there consensus to prohibit using the RSMV? Endasil (Talk) @  21:06, May 2, 2010 (UTC)
Ok, I've skimmed the most recently closed discussion on this. I reiterate my point immediately above; that the default stance should be permission on the Wiki, and neither a good argument that they violate existing policy, nor community consensus has supported a blanket ban on images from the RSMV. We therefore have no right to summarily delete such images.
Some have used the argument that we cannot disobey Jagex's rules as editors. They point to Rules of RuneScape which includes "Jagex rules are also enforced on this wiki, and any user who posts information or advice on how to break rules may be blocked from editing. " That is an incorrect (or rather misleading) statement which should be changed. Its intention was to create a mandate by which the Wiki was not providing information for or encouraging rule-breaking. That it is incorrect as phrased is evident. Are we really going to block Chicken7 for providing his real name on RS:OS? After all, providing your full name is expressly against a Jagex rule. Shall we remove the RuneScape:Links page? After all, advertising other websites is against a Jagex rule.
Requiring all editors to follow Jagex's rules is simply unthinkable, especially when you think of the impact it could have on free speech. We are here to provide critical and educational commentary on a Jagex product. How can we do that if we limit our community to those which strictly follow Jagex's rules? I'm not trying to draw unfavourable parallels but rather present an extreme when i say, do you think it's fair for editors of the North Korea article to be required follow North Korea's harsh rules about freedom of press and speech?
I've always argued that following Jagex's rules and making them happy is good business when it makes no difference to the community. But I do NOT think that it should trump providing valuable information. And thus, a blanket ban is reprehensible in my eyes. But, again, see my 4th guideline at the start of this section. Endasil (Talk) @  21:36, May 2, 2010 (UTC)
The difference between Chicken providing his name as James Adams and using images by the RSMV is that one does not concern Jagex, while the other does. Jagex has no authority here on the wiki, and since Chicken providing his name here doesn't even involve anything that belongs to Jagex, it does not matter. However, Jagex has clearly stated that reverse engineering the game code could see accounts banned from the game. Since obtaining these images requires us to go through an institution that belongs to Jagex (in this case, the RuneScape game), it should be subject to Jagex's rules. I do not support blindly following Jagex's rules in any instance, but I do support following their rules when our activities have to go through something that belongs to them.
Take this example: we allow cursing on the wiki, and yet censor evasion in the game is not allowed. Why? Because the wiki is not owned by Jagex, while the clan chat is. --LiquidTalk 22:44, May 2, 2010 (UTC)
by clan chat i think u ment wiki, right?
and look at north korea- to take pictures of stuff, you need permission to enter their country. if yout take a picture of something they dont want you to, you are breaking their rules. do u think that everything that north korea doesnt want seen about their country shouldnt be seen? i agree its not nice for us to be viewing stuff jagex doesnt want us to, but then again, restricting us from viewing FOR NO REASON WHAT-SO-EVER isnt nice aether. its not as though we are scamming, or hurting anybody.Third age robe top.png 3rd age farcaster Third age druidic robe top.png 22:56, May 2, 2010 (UTC)
That's my point. If you're in North Korea, then obviously you shouldn't do illegal activities. However, if you're outside of North Korea, then you can do whatever things that are illegal in North Korea (provided they're not illegal where you are). The Clan Chat is owned by Jagex, so we have to abide by their rules in there. The wiki is not owned by Jagex, so we do not always have to abide by their rules here. However, to get the RSMV images, we have to go through the RuneScape game, which is owned by Jagex, so we must follow their rules. They say that the RSMV is against the rules, then it is. It doesn't matter that it doesn't hurt anyone; it's still against the rules. --LiquidTalk 23:01, May 2, 2010 (UTC)
if you live in the us, get permissiong to enter north korea, take some pics of stuff the nk govermetn dosent want u 2, and go back 2 the us are u in the wrong? i said taking pictures, you cannot take pics of anything interesting inside nk without going into nk. Third age robe top.png 3rd age farcaster Third age druidic robe top.png 23:20, May 2, 2010 (UTC)
(off topic) What about satellite photos? ⁓ Hello71 23:31, May 2, 2010 (UTC)
uhh.. well.... find me a satellite photo thats as important or well know as this. Third age robe top.png 3rd age farcaster Third age druidic robe top.png 23:40, May 2, 2010 (UTC)
Ok, people are going overboard with an analogy. But my point is that if Jagex rules get in the way of our ability to neutrally comment on RuneScape, we should ignore them. Endasil (Talk) @  00:38, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
The lack of images from the MV does not inhibit our ability to comment on RuneScape in any way. Our articles are written in words, not images. --LiquidTalk 00:42, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
but images contribute the article. theres absolutly no reason not to allow these, unless you work for jagex or something. Third age robe top.png 3rd age farcaster Third age druidic robe top.png
Let me remind you of the recent Parsons thread. He was blocked for uploading three fake images (2 Dungeoneering capes and 1 hood). They were illegitimately obtained, so he was punished for it. How is this any different? Images from the MV are also illegitimately obtained (since reverse engineering is explicitly prohibited by Jagex). --LiquidTalk 00:57, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
simple: he broke rs wiki's rules. this would be breaking jagex's rules. but my main problem with him was he made a fool of himself. he lied, and lied, and each lie was less believable to the point at which he seemed like a 5 year old. and then he would try it again, and brag on talk pages. and again. my problem wasnt that he broke rules, but that he acted so impossibly immature, and so disrespectfull to other wikians, who, as far as i know, had done nothing to him. Third age robe top.png 3rd age farcaster Third age druidic robe top.png 01:29, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
I don't think he broke any of the rules. I don't see anything that says you can't upload fake images. I supported his block because of repeated lying and repeated offenses. --LiquidTalk 01:31, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
You can't make a blanket statement that no image from the RSMV will inhibit our ability to comment on RuneScape. You simply don't know all possibilities at this point, so making a blanket statement is impossible. And I don't care about what's going on with the Parson's decision. Endasil (Talk) @  01:43, May 3, 2010 (UTC)

Comment - It seems to me as though a nasty little loophole has been found, in that it is illegal to reverse-engineer the Jagex Product to make RSMV, and it is illegal to use RSMV to access the cache and retrieve the pictures, but it is legal to post those pictures on the wiki, thereby distributing them. It seems to be a statement in copyright law made to protect organizations from the actions of their members, that only their members may be punished for their own illegal actions.

My two unprovable points remain, that a judge may rule the use unfair on an ethical basis, and that a judge may rule the wiki vicariously liable for the illegal actions of editors, in that the wiki would be condoning RSMV by accepting images from RSMV. Note that I said unprovable, at least in discussion, in that only a trial may prove them; I hope it doesn't come down to "I told you so."

I'd like to restate that, regardless of the fact that it is a fair use to use the images, title 17 makes it illegal to use a software with the purpose of bypassing a technological measure controlling access. Therefore, it is illegal for an editor to verify that the image comes from RSMV by using RSMV and checking for himself. If a group of editors wants to verify on their own time, there's nothing I can do to stop them, but I don't recommend affiliating any verification with the wiki, due to the illegality.

Note that, if they felt like it, Jagex could file a fair use dispute and could most likely justify a subpoena of the IPs that uploaded the RSMV images. With an uploader's IP, they could most likely justify a subpoena of hard-drive information showing use of RSMV, thereby proving illegal activity. Of course this is all but impossible, as it would cost a fortune in time and money and they aren't losing any money; I just wanted to point out that it's possible for them to find out who you are.

This is the problem with citing RSMV; consider an example: "Illegally using this illegal software is the only way to get this image, which we're using legally under Fair Use, at the possible detriment of the editor who uploaded it." Really, though, what would you say? I assert that there's no way to cite RSMV as a source without endorsing it.

I appreciate the steps you took to reach an agreeable proposal, Endasil. While, on an ethical basis, I won't support any form of the proposal, I'll be sure to point out any parts that I believe aren't up to par. Leftiness 01:37, May 3, 2010 (UTC)

The "worst case" scenerio that could happen here is that Jagex would have a lawyer write up a formal DMCA take-down request to Wikia to have these images removed. If subsequent to that some contributor wants to protest that action, Wikia would be forced to permit those images to be re-posted where the whole thing would at that point in time go to court. Until the DMCA take-down request happens, no other legal action is going to happen. Simply put, Jagex can't just screw your life over, and without demonstrating that they have made reasonable efforts in the form of a take-down notice, other efforts to mess with contributors on this wiki will not just backfire, but backfire badly for Jagex.
There is also the issue of barratry. For somebody like Jagex to make legal threats, they have to back it up pretty soundly and could get into legal trouble for simply making stuff up. There are some pretty harsh limits for what an attorney can do, and it is quite clear that the j-mods involved on the official forums that have made commentary about the model viewer certainly are not lawyers nor really even understand all of the subtle laws that may or may not apply to discussions about the model viewer and images that came from it. There is no reason to be concerned or worried here, particularly if Jagex has not even so much as asked us to remove these images informally. This isn't reason to post these images, but it is also fear mongering to suggest that legal harassment may happen when in fact it has never happened. If there is any legal action at all, it would involve the take-down request, and as long as we don't keep reposting those images after that formal request, the issue would die at that point.
As I said earlier, the developers of the RSMV may face angry Jagex attorneys and could end up in court, but we aren't the developers nor to the best of my knowledge are any contributors to this wiki. Even then, I think it would be a hugely uphill battle even for Jagex to shut down the distribution of the model viewer software.... which again we on this wiki are not involved with either. Besides asserting copyright and claiming that the images are an infringement in how they are being used, there is nothing else Jagex can do legally here. In this case, it is the DMCA that actually limits rather than enhances what Jagex can do here. --Robert Horning 04:17, May 3, 2010 (UTC)

Comment - For the sake of those who oppose RSMV on an ethical basis, would make it that RSMV images are only used in cases where screen captures from the game client are impossible? Leftiness 01:46, May 3, 2010 (UTC)

I hate slippery slope arguments, but by allowing RSMV images of any sort, we'd be acknowledging that it's alright to break Jagex's rules in an institution that they own, which is RuneScape (no one cares if Jagex's rules are broken elsewhere, such as the wiki). If we allow that, we'd be opening the door to future advances. --LiquidTalk 01:48, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
We're neither acknowledging that it's alright, nor are the rules being broken in their institution. As long as you can conceive of a way where it's not happening that way. Say my brother has an RS account and plays it once on my computer. The cache is therefore on my computer though I did not agree to the Jagex terms and conditions. I can therefore use the RSMV outside of Jagex's "institution" as you say, without breaking any of the rules since I never entered into any kind of agreement with them. Not that ANY of this is required. Endasil (Talk) @  01:52, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
That's what my fourth bullet is trying to say. Endasil (Talk) @  01:52, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
If that's the case, then you are violating a wiki policy. That's gaming the system. Besides, if Jagex found out, do you think they'll believe your brother didn't do it? I'm willing to bet they'd ban your brother's account. I'd rather not see any of our users banned. --LiquidTalk 01:56, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
WHAT SYSTEM? That policy applies to the Wiki "system", not the Jagex system! Anyway, that's just an example. Endasil (Talk) @  02:12, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
Comment - I also dislike slippery slopes, but even I held that this should be discussed in a completely legal manner. If anything, I assert that we would be condoning illegal activity in accepting RSMV images, especially in citing RSMV as the source. However, due to the reaction I've gotten from arguments such as this, I'm unsure if anybody really cares, especially considering the unlikelyhood of Jagex filing suit...
Endasil, I believe that is an example of vicarious liability. You permitted your brother to use your computer. He agreed to the terms by using Runescape. By permitting him, you agreed to the terms. Leftiness 01:58, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
liquid, jagex wont ban over this unless you confess. we ALL know that. gaming the system is too vague, i cant see how that would be viloating it. Third age robe top.png 3rd age farcaster Third age druidic robe top.png 02:05, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
Comment - Please stop asserting that it is ok to do something just because nobody can find out... Goodnight. Leftiness 02:08, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
im asserting that it is ok to do something as long as it doesnt hurt anybody. this doesnt hurt anybody. Third age robe top.png 3rd age farcaster Third age druidic robe top.png 02:21, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
We've driven the "illegal activity" into the ground by now. I understand if you disagree, but I think we've shown that it is NOT illegal. It may violate the terms of service individual editors have with Jagex, but that is not grounds for a blanket prohibition, given that having a RuneScape account isn't even required to be an editor here. Endasil (Talk) @  02:12, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
3rd age, just because it doesn't hurt anybody is not an excuse to conduct illegitimate activities. Anyone with access to the cache would have agreed to Jagex's TOC. --LiquidTalk 08:06, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
and we have to keep that agreement why...? anybody entering nk has to agree to follow nk's rules. if they take a picture and go, then they are breaking nk's rules. surely you dont suggest that nobody takes pictures of nk.. this is the exact same thing.and chick, some1 was. idk who. Third age robe top.png 3rd age farcaster Third age druidic robe top.png 14:33, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
Liquid, it is completely irrelevant as to what the terms of service even say about the topic, if this is even against the terms of service (I can certainly make an argument that even the RSMV isn't against the TOS), but it really doesn't matter. The law allows us to use content in this manner under fair use restrictions, and that is precisely what this proposal is all about. Fair use law requires some pretty tough and precise restrictions on what is permissible, and it also requires acknowledgement of the rights of the copyright holder as well. This includes a precise citation for where the image was obtained.
This has been my position all along, that it is unreasonable to eliminate all possible uses of these images, or at the least the claim that they are illegal is unfounded and not really a part of law. I'll acknowledge that Jagex would like it if this program never existed in the first place, but that isn't a legal argument. Indeed, I am suggesting that this program may even be perfectly legal and even keeping with the terms of the terms of service agreement. Still, that legality is completely irrelevant as we aren't the developers of this software nor is this wiki involved with the distribution of that software.
A moral or ethical argument can be made, but isn't being made here, is the promotion of a product that Jagex isn't comfortable about having around. I'll also openly acknowledge that this is a legal grey area that isn't so clear cut like somebody having a formal license to duplicate content from Jagex. There is also a whole hacker community that apparently (for perhaps good reasons) the majority of the users on this wiki would like to stay well away from, and I'll admit that the hacker community involved here is blatantly violating Jagex's property in ways that are unconscionable as well. Most of that is with the private server market and the bot builders, where the legal status is even more questionable (particularly on wholesale copying of Jagex designed 3-D models and outright re-use of Jagex software without permission). I hate the bots like almost most other "legitimate" users, and the real-world trade guys are also people I'd like to stay away from and avoid promoting when possible. Please, if you are against this, use the ethical arguments here rather than the legal issues, as the legality of merely displaying images from the model viewer can certainly be proven.
This also isn't a slippery slope issue, as the total number of images that would be displayed under this policy is less than the digits on one hand. This proposed policy can also be extended to all images from all other sources other than the official Java user client interface. It is for a strict limit on any images that come from other source besides the official program, and that those images must be used in accordance to the most strict interpretation of fair use when those images are used at all. What we are asking about here is what those limits ought to be, and that a completely prohibition is unreasonable as well. --Robert Horning 16:31, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
This most certainly is a slippery slope issue. The number of images that are allowed under the proposed policy would be small, but by allowing any images from the policy at all opens up the door for future advances that would gradually allow more and more RSMV images in the future. --LiquidTalk 18:59, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
A slippery slope presumes that this is opening a barn door for using these images in any sort of random way that we think they should be, and that the restrictive policy that is being proposed here is going to be further relaxed in the future. On the contrary, after having these images on this wiki it may very well be that we may simply want to remove them altogether, and this is certainly a reversible decision (unlike some decision that have been made over the ages). There is no reason to believe that a future policy discussion of this nature would result in a substantial enlargement of the number of images permitted under this policy, as discussions like this one would certainly show consensus is for only a limited number and not for widespread use of these images. That is precisely what is being offered here, and noting what the very narrow confines that any such images would be used. Furthermore, I am trying to pre-emptively address other kinds of software that may also be used or even address something that may appear in for example a mainstream news media article. Those are certainly valid source of information, and images from those sources may certainly be used in a similar fashion for fair use. I am suggesting all images from sources that aren't the official client ought to be treated in this very narrow and restrictive fashion, particularly if it is fair use that is presumed. --20:43, May 3, 2010 (UTC)~

Comment - You guys were using my IRL name as an example? O_o Chicken7 >talk 09:09, May 3, 2010 (UTC)

I lol'd. bad_fetustalk 16:37, May 3, 2010 (UTC)

Comment - I apologize for what has been considered scare tactics; my purpose was to illustrate my points. I accept that title 17 allows the images to be posted on the wiki as fair use; I've asserted that it does so to protect organizations from the illegal activities of their members. Regardless of my assertions, per title 17, it is illegal to make and use RSMV, and, because of that, I have an issue with citing RSMV as a source, as I don't see it possible to cite RSMV without condoning its use. Also, it's illegal to verify that RSMV is the source by checking the cache with RSMV, so I would not like any verification to be affiliated with or discussed on the wiki.

Again, I accept that using the images on the wiki can be a fair use, per title 17; what would you do about the verification and citation issues that I brought up, and, for the sake of those who oppose RSMV on an ethical basis, what is the opinion of only using RSMV images where images from the game client won't do? Leftiness 19:47, May 3, 2010 (UTC)

Again, I have not seen any legal argument for why using the RSMV is illegal if the motivation is obtaining something under the fair use framework. It'd be a pretty big legal hole if you were protected for spreading copyright material under fair use but not for obtaining it. That's why the DMCA (at least) explicitly nullifies their access-control circumvention prohibitions in cases of fair use. The verification step is necessary to provide evidence that the image was not manufactured, but does not have to go into detail about how to use the RSMV. That can be left off-site. Maybe just a unique identifier for the model would be sufficient. As for only using RSMV images where images from the game client won't do, I once again have to refer you to my 4th bullet point at the start of this section which says exactly that. We can turn it into a strict rule if the community desires. Endasil (Talk) @  22:17, May 3, 2010 (UTC)

Comment - Afterthoughts - 3rd: If you agreed to a contract, you agreed to a contract. Leaving the country and breaking the contract does not mean you didn't break the contract.

Liquid: As I've noticed, the letter of the law is what seems to matter in discussion. The terms do not say "Don't use products derived from reverse-engineering to access our cache," the terms say "Don't reverse engineer our product," so it is asserted that RSMV doesn't break the terms. I believe any judge worth his robes would call it an obvious violation of fair use and throw it out of court on an ethical ruling, as fair use was written purposefully vague to allow ethical rulings, and sections such as nature were added to fair use to allow ethical rulings, but an ethical and theoretical argument of possible consequences unfortunately holds no ground here; nobody cares if it's against Jagex's wishes and an unethical action because, if Jagex starts the legal processes, we can just remove the images and nobody will face consequences. Regardless of the illegality of using RSMV, supporters are ok using it because it's very unlikely that they'll get in trouble. I've accepted these things, and, as I said, I only hope it doesn't come down to "I told you so." Leftiness 20:04, May 3, 2010 (UTC)

Comment - I firmly believe that we should keep Jagex happy, as long as it does not do us harm. This compromise proposal does not do us anything good. I would also like to say that the compromise proposal amounts to technical jargon that doesn't really mean anything. If an image found in the RSMV can be gotten in-game, then there is no reason to use a RSMV image in lieu of the in-game screenshot. If an image found in the RSMV cannot be found in-game, then that means that it is a piece of unreleased material, and hence unverificable. RS:NOT#CRYSTAL would apply here, since those images would be pure speculation. Even if the image is of a confirmed update, such as the dragon crossbow, there is no way to determine if the RSMV image is going to be the real image of the item once it is released. --LiquidTalk 20:14, May 3, 2010 (UTC)

The Crystal Ball argument doesn't apply here. We write about speculated updates (sourced and otherwise) and spoilers also happen. This topic has also been addressed ad nauseum, and it certainly doesn't help address the issue at hand, as to what sort of additional limits can or ought to be placed on images in regards to this much more restricted policy. Shy of a blanket ban on all of these images, what sort of restrictions do you think ought to be here? --Robert Horning 21:04, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
it DOES do us harm because we are MISSING INFORMATION. i suggest we keep a list of all images not ingame, without trying to give them names or anything. they should be in their own article, and it would say something like "unrealeased items" as to not act like they will be released, or that they will be released in that version. i dont see a problem with this. Third age robe top.png 3rd age farcaster Third age druidic robe top.png 20:47, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
We are not missing any information that we should have. First of all, information is conveyed in words, not images. Images are merely aids; they cannot substitute words. Second of all, like I already stated, any images that are verificable can be retrieved some other way (i.e. in-game screenshots), and images that aren't verificable shouldn't be here in the first place, per RS:NOT#CRYSTAL. --LiquidTalk 20:50, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
That's a fundamentally naive view of information, and quite wrong. Endasil (Talk) @  22:17, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
What information would be missing here? It would be a violation of fair-use to create a gallery like you are suggesting here, but it would not be a violation to show an image and suggest it was a pre-release and/or historical version of the item... in the article about that item. Again, each image under this policy and in fact each use for each image would have to have its own fair-use rationale that spells out precisely why that image is being used in that article. The most valid argument for applying an image would be that no other way to obtain that image other than something from the model viewer can be used... where a duplicate image from the model viewer is inappropriate. It would still have to be relevant to the article and it would at least have to be verifiable in some other form... in other words it can't be a model from World of Warcraft or some other game being passed off as a future Runescape item. --Robert Horning 21:04, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
Liquid, a big motivation in opposing a blanket ban is that it takes a crystal ball to claim that it will never be beneficial to the Wiki to show images from the RSMV. You say it as if the images' worthlessness is obvious and absolute, and never going to change. You don't know that and haven't provided any evidence of that. By providing a strict framework for saying that it will have to benefit the Wiki (namely through explicit fair use rationale and the fact that a suitable alternative could not be found elsewhere) we avoid a blanket ban (which has not been defended) while essentially keeping the number of images used to as close to zero as is good for the community. Your slippery slope arguments seem to imply otherwise, and I'd like you to point out where in our suggested rules you think the slippery slope lies. Endasil (Talk) @  22:17, May 3, 2010 (UTC)

Comment - Clearly we have gotten past the legal issues since the opposers are now fixated on the ethical issues. A view of ethics that fixates solely on Jagex might make it seem that the RSMV is an ethical gray-area at best. I take a broader view that says that a blanket ban on the RSMV is actually quite unethical because it prevents critical or educational commentary and thus stifles free speech. I take inspiration from whistleblower protection laws found in many countries. Even though an employee signs a non-disclosure agreement to which they are civilly bound, under extreme circumstances they may violate that agreement with legal protection when it is to bring to light something illegal about the company. That's not to say that the whistleblower exception allows them to violate the NDA at will - the whistle blowing must be done under very narrow parameters. My proposal is somewhat akin to a whistleblower policy. It gives us an exception to the norm, under very strict and justified circumstances. Endasil (Talk) @  22:17, May 3, 2010 (UTC)

A couple of points. I'm flattered that you said "opposers", but at the present, I don't think anyone has actually cast an oppose vote yet. Futhermore, I'm the only one here that would do so. As to your comment that it takes a crystal ball to show that it's not beneficial to the wiki, that's not what the policy means. The policy prohibits speculation about future releases. Obviously, it takes a crystal ball to prohibit any of those pieces of speculation, since they all could potentially become updates. However, at the present time, there is no proof that those would be the images that Jagex will use in the articles. So, until the item is actually released, we should not allow it. --LiquidTalk 22:25, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
Actually I was thinking specifically of Lefti when I said "opposers" since he has said he would have to oppose. And I didn't cite the crystal ball policy. I'm just saying it takes more unfounded speculation to say that nothing from the RSMV will ever benefit the Wiki than just making a strict policy for when it might be able to be used. Endasil (Talk) @  22:29, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
I'm not saying that nothing from the RSMV will benefit the wiki; I'm just saying that at the present time, the unreleased item images in there are pure speculation, and thus not allowed under RS:NOT#CRYSTAL. --LiquidTalk 22:38, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
how is an image speculation? simply saying this is a image, and this image is in the rs cache, is NOT speculating on anything. Third age robe top.png 3rd age farcaster Third age druidic robe top.png 23:07, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
No, the problem with that is that it's unjustifiable under fair use. You don't just get to distribute stuff without fulfilling the conditions of fair use. The difficulty is linking between the commentary and the image being used under fair use. But we can cross that bridge when we come to it (once we have a more solid set of standards for fair use on the Wiki) Endasil (Talk) @  01:11, May 4, 2010 (UTC)
If you're not saying that nothing from the RSMV will ever benefit the Wiki, then you must agree that a blanket ban doesn't make sense. We're not here to decide the merits of these images on a case-by-case basis, we're trying to find a policy that can be applied on a case-by-case basis. Endasil (Talk) @  01:11, May 4, 2010 (UTC)

continued....

i want a list of all the items in the cache that arnt ingame atm. this is the only use the cache has- to help us guess at whats coming. not crystal shouldnt appy here because we arnt predicting, or suggesting that an item will come out, we are simply stating that a spacific item is in the cache but not the game. look at blood tithe pouch article- thats in qc, but not ingame. why should items in qc get articles but not items in the cache? Third age robe top.png 3rd age farcaster Third age druidic robe top.png 21:23, May 3, 2010 (UTC)

Comment - Let me put it this way: We are predicting what the item will look like when it is released. We do not know if Jagex will keep the image in the cache when they release the item, so that is a violation of RS:NOT#CRYSTAL. Furthermore, according to RS:NIP, items that have valid proof of being released may have their own articles. That is why things like blood title pouch, dragon crossbow, etc have their own articles. However, we cannot have images for them, since there is no valid way of predicting what they will look like without horribly violating RS:NOT#CRYSTAL. --LiquidTalk 21:27, May 3, 2010 (UTC)

first off, we wouldnt be predicting, because we wouldnt be trying to figure out what it is. the article would just say "this is cache image ______. it appears to be a crossbow, with the metal part made of a red metal, and the wooden part made of light wood." so, we arnt suggesting it will be released that way, simply that an item like that is currently in the cache. secondly, why must the item have its own article? i would prefer that, ofc, but couldnt we just have a generic "unreleased items" page that would contain information on the blood tithe pouch, the dragon cbow, etc? or, we could have it as an extension of the current cache article, saying that these images are in the cache but not ingame. any 1 of those options seems good 2 me, take ur pick. Third age robe top.png 3rd age farcaster Third age druidic robe top.png 21:40, May 3, 2010 (UTC)

Current policy allows unreleased, but confirmed future releases to have their own articles. So, a generic unreleased items page is kind of pointless, and could get very long, since Jagex has a habit of holding up updates for quite a long time. As for the Jagex cache article, putting the images there serves no purpose. Images are supposed to aid in articles. --LiquidTalk 21:45, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
it is certainly not pointless, im sure i would be going there very often. i dont see how it could get very long, as even if jagex is known to be developing fairy tale 3, void knight quests, a construction update, a myreque quest, a smithing update, and additions to dungeoneering, we dont know what items that will bring. furthormore, we dont know the blood tithe pouch will ever been ingame. remember when quick chat had stuff like 9mm revover? do you really think that item will be added to the game? lastly, i think we should start treating the cache images as something that is important and interesting, rather then something that should be left to jagex to deal with. Third age robe top.png 3rd age farcaster Third age druidic robe top.png 21:51, May 3, 2010 (UTC)
Fair use would allow an image of an unreleased item to demonstrate the point about how the Jagex cache contains more than just items which are accessible in game. It would be used as an educational aid to the claim. Endasil (Talk) @  00:41, May 6, 2010 (UTC)

Comment - Yes, the DMCA did nullify their access-control statement's effect on fair use, but they did not say it's legal to reverse-engineer or to use RSMV, a product of reverse-engineering, just because of fair use. As a separate legal entity, the wiki uses the images under fair use, so it faces no consequences, but using RSMV is still an illegal act, which users of RSMV could be charged with, as unlikely as it is. As such, I'm unsure how you can cite RSMV as a source without concerns for condoning an illegal act, per "Using this illegal software illegaly is the only way to get this image, which we're using legally under fair use."

I read point four; I would like a strict rule that RSMV images only be used when game client images won't suffice.

Per my above statements, my guaranteed opposal is of an ethical basis and should not be considered in consensus. However, any concerns which I back with any sort of solid argument should be taken at face value.

Finally, "We found this image in the cache" doesn't fit under fair use. Per Robert and Endasil, any RSMV images have to be strictly under fair use. Leftiness 01:16, May 4, 2010 (UTC)

Comment - Note that I have a tendency to quickly accept arguments which I believe have merit and that I accept before I think about counter-arguments. This is one such counter-argument which I didn't think about before accepting. I've been re-reading the law and these posts... Hear me out.

What happened to the breach of terms of service argument? The last time the terms were brought up, Robert asserted that the terms don't matter because the law permits using the content under fair use. If the terms are violated, doesn't that mean the law doesn't permit it? Note that Section 1201 (c) doesn't permit reverse-engineering; it says the reverse-engineering covered in Section 1201 doesn't affect fair use.

Notice that the law does not permit the removal of terms and conditions. Section 1202 (b) says "No person shall, without the authority of the copyright owner or the law - (1) intentionally remove any copyright management information [including] (c)(6) terms and conditions for the use of the work." Section 107: Fair Use includes exceptions to Section 106: Exclusive Rights, including the right to make copies, prepare derivatives, distribute copies, etc; Fair Use does not affect Section 1202, so it doesn't get you out of the terms.

So, I'm back to reverse-engineering the Jagex Product. I am not asserting that reverse-engineering is breaking Section 1201; I'm asserting that reverse-engineering breaks section 1202 (b), including terms and conditions, which is not affected by Fair Use and thereby does affect Fair Use. Logically, since it a breach in terms to make RSMV, due to the reverse-engineering of the Jagex Product, it a breach in terms to use RSMV, the product of a broken contract. I believe the wiki would be vicariously liable for the actions of editors using RSMV, so it is a breach in terms to post the resulting images on the wiki.

I assert that the breached terms make it an unfair use. The reverse-engineering alone doesn't affect Fair Use, but that it was contractually agreed not to reverse-engineer does, on account of Nature, affect Fair Use.

Something I just noticed; this is in Jagex's terms: "These terms and conditions are governed by English law and any dispute connected with them or Jagex Products will be decided only by the courts of the United Kingdom." I do believe they have the right to do that; should we be double-checking our arguments' compliance with UK law? Leftiness 23:08, May 5, 2010 (UTC) t

Once again, the terms of service have little or no bearing on legality. I demand that if you want to bring up that point again, you point to the U.S. law stating that breaking a contract is illegal. Otherwise, drop that part of the argument. Further, the terms of use cannot redefine unfair use. You keep asserting things, but don't actually back your assertions up with laws. I assert that the terms of service of a product cannot restrict a fundamental right, because nothing I've seen tells me it can. The onus is on you to prove it does.
Sorry, I partially take this back. You did make an effort to back up your stance with laws and I was wrong in saying that you haven't. But you haven't actually provided a legal source for the fact claim that breaking the terms of a contract can affect the finding of fair use. Endasil (Talk) @  00:45, May 6, 2010 (UTC)
Let me be clear with an example. If you sign a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) and proceed to expose a company secret under the conditions of fair use, you might be sued. But you have not violated copyright law. What you're saying is more like this: I sign a deal with the lessor of my car to drive under 95 kph at all times. If I then drive 99 kph, even on a 100 kph road, a cop can pull me over for speeding. Do you see the folly of such an argument? Endasil (Talk) @  00:41, May 6, 2010 (UTC)
Actually there are separate statutory laws that apply to non-disclosure agreements in the form of trade secret laws that apply if you violate the terms of that NDA. As I also pointed out, this is (at least in the USA) something that is not a federal jurisdiction but instead is something that falls under state laws in most cases. Trying to find out under what state that law would fit is something that really makes NDAs quite weak under law too, but it can be an issue. It is for this reason I suggested violating a Jagex NDA might be one way to end up in an English court room instead of staying in the country where you are living at. Still, before we get all weird about NDAs, I assert that nobody involved with this wiki has signed one so therefore it doesn't apply to us in the first place.
Breaking a contract does apply, and contract law still is law here that can be enforced through a similar legal proceeding. It would be useful, however, to see what common law applies to video game publishers... of which there is some surprising legal case history too. Some of that, including even English common law, is rather surprising including limits on what a publisher may do to cancel/ban accounts. The legal ownership of an account is not a settled issue under law and some legal precedence already exists to suggest that the players actually own the bits and bytes of a user account... perhaps even the physical space on the server hard drive where the data is being stored. This is especially true for "membership" accounts where money has been paid to maintain that account. Seriously, if you get into the issue of a terms of service contract it gets to be a really mess and isn't as clear cut as simply reading the contract itself and asking one party (Jagex) what their interpretation of that contract may be.
All this said, bringing up the terms of service agreement for playing Runescape is for me something that is a red herring as it really doesn't apply in the situation we are talking about. The terms of service agreement says nothing about the use of photos from the game, and even if it did it would be a violation of the law to suggest that fair use doesn't apply. Fair use isn't something that can't be signed away, as it is a fundamental right derived straight from free speech rights. Essentially, this is constitutional law vs. contractual law, and constitutional law is certainly going to take precedence in a huge way in that case. As statutory law also applies for fair use (because Congress felt it was important enough to address the issue in the USA... and even Parliament for the UK in the case of fair dealing laws) there is the additional statutory law to back up the viewpoint that legal fair use can certainly happen for displaying and using images in certain contexts. I believe that applies directly to the situation with the model viewer explicitly. --Robert Horning 12:24, May 6, 2010 (UTC)

Comment - I did back my assertions with law. Section 1202, quoted above, states that you can't disregard the terms and conditions of a work. Section 1201 said that Section 1201 would not affect fair use. It didn't say that contracts can't say "Don't reverse-engineer." Section 1202 doesn't have a subsection saying that Section 1202 doesn't apply to Fair Use. Therefore, breaking the terms is breaking Section 1202, and that applies to Fair Use. Leftiness 00:54, May 6, 2010 (UTC)

I don't see how 1202 is relevant. It has to do with maintaining copyright management INFORMATION, and when they talk about terms and services, they're just saying that it's included under copyright management information. In other words, 1202 regarding terms and services is just saying you can't redistribute copyrighted material without including a copy of the license for that material (even if it's under fair use). It does not comment on anything else relevant. Endasil (Talk) @  02:57, May 6, 2010 (UTC)