Middle-Earth Roleplaying Project Mod Launches Petition

September 6, 2012 -

Last week the creators of a Skyrim mod inspired by The Lord of the Rings called Middle-Earth Roleplaying Project (MERP) found itself staring down the barrel of a cease and desist letter from Warner Bros.

In an attempt to save the mod, the team behind MERP set up a petition urging fans and followers to convince Warner Bros. to rescind the order and make an exception for what they think could be a most exceptional mod... From the petition:

"[The Middle-Earth Roleplaying Project] is a Lord of the Rings total conversion for The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim made, non for profit, by volunteers in their spare time," the petition reads. "We, the undersigned, call upon Warner Bros. Entertainment to lift the cease and desist from MERP and allow the developers to continue as they were with no hindrance. Until the above solution is reached, the undersigned promise to boycott and refrain from purchasing any Lord of the Rings branded products that Warner Bros publish or support."

If you would like to show your support for the mod, visit gopetition.com.

 

Source: The Escapist

 


Comments

Re: Middle-Earth Roleplaying Project Mod Launches Petition

I can't see where WB has a leg to stand on here, legally.  This seems to fall pretty squarely under Fair Use.  Furthermore, even if they were violating copyright, WB doesn't own the copyrights to Lord of the Rings, Tolkien Enterprises does, so this is really none of their concern.

Re: Middle-Earth Roleplaying Project Mod Launches Petition

I was about to post the same thing.  However, they MIGHT have a case if the art assets used in the mod are taken directly from the movie, such as Sarumon's Tower, Helm's Deep and Isengard as they appeared in the movies.  I do believe that the particular portrayals of the places in the movies would be considered WB's intellectual property, and therefore subject to CD.

--- With the first link, the chain is forged.

Re: Middle-Earth Roleplaying Project Mod Launches Petition

The worst part about this?  If not for recent copyright expansions The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers and Return of the King would have all been in the public domain as of January this year.

Re: Middle-Earth Roleplaying Project Mod Launches Petition

"Until the above solution is reached, the undersigned promise to boycott and refrain from purchasing any Lord of the Rings branded products that Warner Bros publish or support."

Yeah, good luck with that last bit.  As cool as I'm sure the mod is, I don't believe you'll find many LOTR fans willing to stay away from the new Hobbit movies.

 

Andrew Eisen

Re: Middle-Earth Roleplaying Project Mod Launches Petition

True, but I just signed it anyways.  I don't have any desire to go see the movie regardless, so it's no skin off my nose and another signature to bolster their ranks.

Re: Middle-Earth Roleplaying Project Mod Launches Petition

And you just touched on how this petition is worthless - WB KNOWS that anyone truly interested in such a project isn't going to abide by this clause, so they lose nothing by holding a hard line.

--- With the first link, the chain is forged.
 
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