How Not To Get Sued For Copyright - Everything You Need to Know About the New System

oofthatsillegal
Please note that this post is in no way, shape, or form a tutorial on how to break the law. This is a tutorial on how best to follow the updated Roblox rules on copyright infringement and how to ensure that your account is not negatively effected by the stricter punishment in the changes.

I. Introduction

As I’m sure you all are aware, Roblox has updated its Terms of Use on copyright infringement to prevent legal action being taken against them and this hasn’t fully been understood by the public so I feel it is my responsibility to explain the inner workings of this serious topic as simply as I can to make your life easier.

It’s beyond doubt that the legal ramifications behind using copyrighted content can have dangerous effects and I personally want to thank Roblox for their swift action to prevent its members from being sued by major corporations by taking initiative.

THANK YOU. THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

II. What does the Terms of Use say?

In the updated ToU copyright is explained in multiple areas in different ways. I have included the major sections necessary for developers to understand to ensure that they follow the rules.

Section 6B.5 states the following:

UGC Representations and Warranties; Rights in UGC.

  1. You are solely responsible for your UGC and you represent and warrant that:
  1. You are the creator and owner of, or have the necessary licenses, rights, consents, and permissions, to use and to authorize us to exploit the license that you grant to us hereunder; and
  1. Your UGC, and the use of your UGC as contemplated by these Terms, does not and will not: (i) infringe, violate, or misappropriate any third-party right, including any copyright, trademark, patent, trade secret, moral right, privacy right, right of publicity, or any other intellectual property or proprietary right; (ii) slander, defame, libel, or invade the right of privacy, publicity or other property rights of any other person; (iii) require Roblox to obtain any further licenses from or pay royalties or compensation or other amounts or provide any attribution to any third parties; (iv) result in a breach of contract between you and a third party; or (v) cause us to violate any law or regulation.
  1. You must not Provide any UGC if you are not the owner of or are not fully authorized to grant rights in all of the elements of the UGC you intend to Provide. In addition, if you only own the rights in and to a sound recording, but not to the underlying musical works embodied in such sound recordings, then you must not Provide such sound recordings unless you have all necessary rights, authorizations and permissions with respect to such embedded musical works that grant you sufficient rights to grant the licenses to Roblox under these Terms. You agree to pay all monies owing to any person as a result of Providing your UGC.

What Roblox is stating here is that it is responsibility of the developers to ensure that they have permission to use the third-party material through permission and, as they put it, "agree to pay all monies owing to any person as a result of Providing your UGC."

They continue their warning against using other’s content in Section 7C of the ToU saying:

C. Use at Own Risk. In addition, third-party services (as discussed above) and Third-Party Materials that may be accessed from, displayed on or linked to from your device are not available in all languages or in all countries. We make no representation that such services and materials are appropriate or available for use in any particular location. To the extent you choose to access such services or materials, you do so at your own initiative and are responsible for compliance with any applicable laws, including but not limited to applicable local laws.

Section 6C’s message to developers is incredibly clear and polite:

Digital Millennium Copyright Act

  1. Notice. We respect the intellectual property rights of others and we ask you to do the same.

III. The Process of Punishment for Breaking the Terms of Use

As laid out in the Official Rules of the Roblox Devforum, the three strike system of the devforum is as follows:

The direct approach at one constitutes removal of material from the devforum makes life easier for developers; however, DevRel continued to elaborate on this top twice, first in a post titled Updated to 3 Strike IP Infringement Policy where they communicate the following:

Please keep in mind that Roblox regularly processes DMCA takedown requests from IP owners and as required by law, has an account penalty process in place that’s used to counter repeat offenders. Until we roll out the updated process, if there are any assets that you uploaded that you wish to remove, we will help you remove these from the platform. Please email us as follows:

DevRel continues this conversation in another post, Answers to your Recent Questions, elaborating:

IV. Other Resources to Learn about Copyright Law

Now that you understand the full extent of the Rules regarding copyright, it seems necessary to provide external resources for your viewing pleasure to ensure your understanding of the topic. I hope these help you on your quest for knowledge:
https://developer.roblox.com/articles/Copyright-Guidance


V. Closing

Protecting yourself from copyright infringement can be an easy task if done reasonably. If you’re going to use other people’s content, first ensure that you have permission to! By simply following the rules, you ensure that your account is not put in harms way.

I hope the information provided to you here will allow you to protect your account and make robux through your games in a safe, legal way! Good luck in your development and remember: read the rules!

LuckyTux

New to the devforum? Check out LuckyTux’s article Obtaining Full Member for Dummies to get ahead!

71 Likes

Nice use of memes could use a little more, in-depth explanations, as well as good use of external sources.

Overall, another amazing guide by LuckyTux.

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haha lemme just sniff pull up an old meme cough cough yep here it is, our brave valiant hero LuckyTux in response to the unrest about the new copyright laws:

testin

But in all seriousness, thank you so much for the time and effort you put into these! You make them very enjoyable while still educational! Great work my dude!!

14 Likes

Where did you get the resource/website, I want to read up on it. :thinking:

Next statement is off-topic.

Honestly still can’t belive you put so much work in a post! In made a whole series of books. How to not get sued, members for dummies etc. Are we expecting more? Keep up the amazing work!

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That is a reference from the Roblox Terms of Use

I will continue to write articles like this, yes. Now that I’ve discovered my niche to stand out from other article writers, I plan to continue to release these when I have time.

However, time is the issue since I am involved and dedicated to IRL events (I’m captain of my schools football team, president of the politics club, have been a lead in the schools musical for the past couple years, am training for the marine corps since I hope to attend navy, and am applying to college) causing me not to have enough time to dedicate to writing extremely long articles. In fact, this was actually one of my quicker articles only taking two hours (compared to usual 5-10)

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The new system is pretty frightening, thank you for clearing some stuff up!

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Sooo people who make brand clothing (such as adidas) can’t devEx right?

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No, you can get sued though. (Oof.) :sad:

Basically, don’t do it

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Great post, love seeing the new format.

I’ve learnt that if in doubt, ask a professional and/or do some research, it can save you a world of hassle.

For example, I spoke with some local Interlectual Property lawyers in regards to my use of “railworks2”, and that lead to the result that I would be pretty safe based on the facts I told them.

Depending on your region, you may find that the advice is difficult.

Something @LuckyTux missed out is that according to the Roblox Terms of Use 11.B, the jurisdiction is in California, which is worth at least noting.

In general, great work me dude can’t wait for more.

4 Likes

Thank you for this post! Truly a gem especially with what felt like a somewhat vague statement from Roblox themselves.

Very informative and I hope others find this useful as well. It also clears up a few misconceptions about the update as well as what copyrighted content entitles.

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Don’t use anyone else’s content. Hooray, now you don’t have to worry!

What about UGC that pertains to Star Wars, such as sounds, images, etc.?

Anything with a trademark or copyright is off limits.

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What would this likely mean for groups that utilize trademarked logos, sounds, etc. both on the site and their games? There’s plenty of Star Wars groups that do this.

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They are already breaking the law, the updated DMCA rules don’t change that fact.

As put by the amazing @wravager, it’s illegal to use anything relating to star wars and abusers can be sued.

The best course of action is to stop action immediately and not break rules in the future.

Now, to be clear, I am not endorsing copyright infringement in the slightest but:

It should be noted that Roblox generally won’t do anything unless they actually receive a DMCA. As they stated in one of their update threads, these don’t come in all that often (5/month).

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