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djpretzel

Previous FF6 Kickstarter *cancelled* BUT new one in the works!!

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Everybody relax. They're working with SE. The main page says they MIGHT be able to reopen the kickstarter next week. If that happens, then it's a happy ending! But yea can't you guys understand why SE would be upset? As soon as OCR got on kickstarter and starting getting money using the IP Final Fantasy, that's when they stepped in it. SE is being nice working with OCR.

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Welp, suspected as much.

Personally, I'm going to refrain from joining in on the Squeenix hate until this is resolved, mostly because THAT is what will affect how I view them. I mean, it's reasonable enough that they have to step in. Regardless of how they did it, OCR was using the Final Fantasy IP as part as their fundraiser, AND they were distributing physical copies of the album, even IF it was just a reward for donating and not technically "selling" them. If SE didn't step in on this, it'd have set a bad precedent if, later down the line, someone who ISN'T a not-for-profit group like OCR tried to do the same thing.

Hopefully SquareEnix realizes that this money was not raised to line someone's pocket, but was raised to back a site that helps keep nostalgia and love for the games they made alive and fresh. If that involves them getting a small cut for the use of the "Final Fantasy" name, so be it. As long as they work to let the Kickstater go through and treat OCR fairly, I'll have no complaint.

Best of luck, guys, I'll be keeping an eye on this to see how it goes.

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I actually wasn't surprised that something like this happened. It doesn't make it any less lame, of course.

I never looked at the kickstarter page, so when this was announced I was unsure as to why this project needed funding as opposed to any other album OCR released (and I think if it was like the FF7 album or any other album OCR released there would have been no legal action taken). Obviously I know the reasons now.

All the same, I hope this gets sorted out amicably.

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Hopefully mentioning this on Final Fantasy Network didn't do anything to cause this :<

*paranoid and nervous* :<

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Looks like my speculative hunch in the other thread a week ago was quite correct. Someone did indeed catch wind of it, and didn't like it. Not surprising at all, though, especially considering the amount of cash that was raised, and whose IP was being used (a company who's somewhat notorious for shutting down fan projects).

But to be completely honest, who didn't see this coming? People donate $50 and get a produced CD of FFVI remixes, without any kind of licensing deal with Square-Enix. Sure, it wasn't specifically selling the CD outright, but it was a big selling point for donating, and it was still money changing hands for those donating $50 or more. And for companies in general who look out for their IPs to the level Squenix has over the years, that's close enough to warrant taking action. So while the idea was a great one, I can't help but think someone dropped the legal ball on that one during the planning stages. This really should have been seen coming, even if the donation drive hadn't garnered so much cash.

Now the question is, will a deal be made to allow this to keep going, or will the kickstarter have to be... well, rekickstarted (sans remixes of course)?

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I'd love to help, if this came back up. I hope Square Enix gives the okay, but I can say I understand why they would be upset in using the Final Fantasy IP in a commercial context. We can remix all we want, freely and for our personal use, under fair use, but once we start raising money in its name, it becomes a legal issue. Best get permission first and then do the project, rather than have this happen.

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I've been kind of a Kickstarter fiend ever since the FF6 project started. So far, I've seen two 'similar' projects, one is art, one is music. I'm not trying to get anyone else in trouble but, I just don't understand where the line is drawn ..

The "issue" here is that these kinds of projects usually fall into a strange gray area when it comes to whether it's "legal or not". While I can't speak for the two other projects you've seen that are similar to the FF6 Kickstarter campaign, what I can say is that in many cases (if not most), the "problems" that arise are often due to the visibility of the project. Or in other words, how popular the project is in the eyes of the public.

Since OCR ended up generating 4-5 times the amount of money that they had been expecting, that would catch the eyes of the public and raises questions from the publishers (in this case, Square Enix).

However, since this is a gray area, each situation is different and is up for individual interpretations and negotiations. That being the case, the request from DJP to try and hold off from speculation of what SE has said or what's being done in the negotiations is actually a very reasonable request as each situation like this can vary greatly.

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The cynical side of me has X, X-2, XI, XII, XIII, XIII-2---hell, XIV reasons for not liking the sudden turn this project has taken, even though I half-expected legal action from Square Enix. It's hard to describe, but now it feels like my pledged coin is being divvied up for another outstretched palm who caught wind of where the gettin' was good, so to speak. That's a hard feeling to shake. Perhaps that feeling will be proven wrong next week. I await the official word.

Even though the whole thing sounds like legal saber-rattling to me, I respect the process that must be followed and it's great that the album is moving forward to a conclusion that can/will appease both parties. The fact that there's communication is a positive sign. At least Square Enix didn't plug their fingers firmly in their ears and shout, "STOP! DESIST! NO! NO! LALALALALA-LALALA I CAN'T HEAR YOU!" like I imagine most of these things are handled. That's a credit to OCR's reputation.

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As most people did, I also had the same idea that Square wasn't happy seeing Final Fantasy being used for someone's money idea. Shocking, not at all. But, good to know that they are working with OCR on some kind of benefit. :)

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But to be completely honest, who didn't see this coming? People donate $50 and get a produced CD of FFVI remixes, without any kind of licensing deal with Square-Enix.

Well, we actually were looking into licensing options for the music (as I had discussed in a recent interview). But you can't finalize any kind of arrangement until the music is done, or at the very least you know how MUCH you need to license...

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You know, I'm not entirely sure just why you need kickstarter to actually help with this drive. If anything, all of your community is already here, on the site, and ready and willing to give their money.

In fact, for this kind of project, I'm not sure that kickstarter is even appropriate - because there's only so many copies of the CDs that you're going to make, and to keep it legal without licensing the music (so that you can 'sell' the copies) is impossible. If it's a totally not-for-profit venture, then you'd need to make sure that every copy sold is exactly the amount of money for production per one CD. If it's anything above that (and shipping), it's turning a profit.

While that's really fine, where does the profit go? To the site. Now, what is the difference between that and the donation button on the top of the site? There is none. I'm not sure why you need to have a drive for the CD production like this. Is it just because kickstarters are fashionable right now, and you know that you will get much more money than you asked for? It's not like you are at any point more legally accountable to produce the products because it's through kickstarter (though, I have to say, that's really not an issue with the OCR staff. They're pretty easy to trust.) Is there just not as much flow as you would like through the standard donation? Why not just have a big news post to pimp a donation drive with? Your community is here, and they will see it, and just as many people will re-blog, or tweet or share it out.

Can someone just fill me in on what the point of having a kickstarter is, versus just asking people to send money through paypal for the price of production and shipping? Either way, with money involved you technically have to license it anyway for it to be strictly 'legal'. Nothing gray about that.

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The only problem with liscencing the music is that it will no longer be free for download, right?

The major difference between kickstarter and PayPal is that the former is more public and interactive, which is a double edge sword as you can see. If OCR did something similar but used PayPal, there won't be as much rewards, success or attention but it would be less likely to get shut down.

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Well, we actually were looking into licensing options for the music (as I had discussed in a recent interview). But you can't finalize any kind of arrangement until the music is done, or at the very least you know how MUCH you need to license...

How come you guys didn't set a limit on how many copies of the album were going to be produced? You know, make it "first come, first served." Sure, it would have potentially limited the number of people willing to give $50 or more, but then you would have had the number needed to approach Square-Enix in terms of copies being potentially given out, and avoided everything that's happening now. Plus, if the funds kept coming in readily (after the albums had all been claimed), you could have tried to renegotiate behind the scenes with Squenix about increasing the album count. Or perhaps negotiated a set number of albums per $1000 raised from the beginning?

I know all this is after the fact, and some of what I've said likely comes off as, "No shit, Captain Obvious" commentary. But I guess I'm just surprised that after how thorough everyone on the site staff was about getting a nice and official contract agreement drawn up between OCR and the hosted remixers, that you guys went forward with the album reward idea with no agreement between OCR and Square-Enix.

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The only problem with liscencing the music is that it will no longer be free for download, right?

The major difference between kickstarter and PayPal is that the former is more public and interactive, which is a double edge sword as you can see. If OCR did something similar but used PayPal, there won't be as much rewards, success or attention but it would be less likely to get shut down.

I don't think licensing means that you have to sell it, just that you have the rights to distribute it.

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Yeah, I think technically people are supposed to get the rights for even freely distributed music. x_x

Anyway I have a question:

When the Kickstarter is reinstated, will it:

A) Start up with the remaining days until August 9th

B) Start with as many days as it had before it was deactivated

C) Start fresh with 30 days and 0 pledges

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Can someone just fill me in on what the point of having a kickstarter is, versus just asking people to send money through paypal for the price of production and shipping? Either way, with money involved you technically have to license it anyway for it to be strictly 'legal'. Nothing gray about that.

Because Kickstarter is what all the cool kids are doing nowadays.

Seriously. Kickstarter existed well before Double-fine made a boatload of money off of it. Very few people cared. But once they did, and it became a big news item, everyone and their dog that ever wanted free money sent their way without having to deal with all that "loan process" business hopped right on the bandwagon.

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You know, I'm not entirely sure just why you need kickstarter to actually help with this drive. If anything, all of your community is already here, on the site, and ready and willing to give their money.

The Kickstarter wasn't really about funding the album--it was the yearly OCR Donation Drive. They were just piggy-backing onto the album to help raise awareness. The physical copies of the album were just donation incentives. In other words, if you want to sell a tote bag, you just make a tote bag and sell it, you don't start a fundraiser.

Because Kickstarter is what all the cool kids are doing nowadays.

Seriously. Kickstarter existed well before Double-fine made a boatload of money off of it. Very few people cared. But once they did, and it became a big news item, everyone and their dog that ever wanted free money sent their way without having to deal with all that "loan process" business hopped right on the bandwagon.

Dude, that seems pretty unnecessarily cynical. I know I've contributed to Kickstarters well before the Double-Fine thing and there were crap projects on it then, just like there's crap on it now. The Double-Fine project certainly raised public awareness, but how is that a bad thing? Because there are more people misusing it? Sure but there are plenty of people misusing every service out there. Just don't contribute to them. Eventually people will figure out the difference. More exposure means that more people whose projects I'd actually like to support are likely to know about it now. It means that OCR can do pledge drives with rewards without dealing with the potential nightmare that is PayPal (even if it's not physical albums, just OCR merch would be awesome). And that's a good thing.

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This is prohibited by Kickstarter: No charity or cause funding. Examples of prohibited use include raising money for the Red Cross, funding an awareness campaign, funding a scholarship, or promoting the donation of funds raised, or future profits, to a charity or cause.

Just saying, it can't be said that this takes the place of the Support OCR fundraiser, that would be against the Kickstarter guidelines. This was a fundraiser for the FF6 album printing.

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I don't think OCR donations would violate that clause. OCR is neither a charity nor a cause (well, unless you consider spreading awareness of and love for video game music a cause, I guess). It's paying for upkeep and bandwidth of a website that distributes independent music. Helping to fund an otherwise non-profit website isn't the same as donating to a goodwill charity or political endeavor.

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How come you guys didn't set a limit on how many copies of the album were going to be produced? You know, make it "first come, first served." Sure, it would have potentially limited the number of people willing to give $50 or more, but then you would have had the number needed to approach Square-Enix in terms of copies being potentially given out, and avoided everything that's happening now. Plus, if the funds kept coming in readily (after the albums had all been claimed), you could have tried to renegotiate behind the scenes with Squenix about increasing the album count. Or perhaps negotiated a set number of albums per $1000 raised from the beginning?

You misunderstand me. We don't have all the music done for the project. We don't even have an exact track count. So, even if we did limit the # of albums printed (which we did, and are going to) it wouldn't help with nailing down licensing figures since you ALSO need to know how much music there is!

I noticed on the Shizz people hating because we "didn't license" the music, but again, to be clear, we were actively considering licensing options and wouldn't have been able to execute on anything anyway without having a final track or album count.

I don't think licensing means that you have to sell it, just that you have the rights to distribute it.

It depends on the license. When people talk about licensing music for distribution they're most usually referring to mechanical licensing via the compulsory mechanical licensing statute in the US code, section 115, which enables people to obtain (with or without the permission of the copyright holder) mechanical licenses at a rate of 9.1 cents per song, per album or download provided. However, people can (and do) make licenses with all sort of specialized terms.

When the Kickstarter is reinstated, will it:

We don't know. As posted on the front page, it's not even a sure thing that it WILL be reinstated, though everyone involved is hoping that is the resolution we reach. We can't answer that question.

Seriously. Kickstarter existed well before Double-fine made a boatload of money off of it. Very few people cared. But once they did, and it became a big news item, everyone and their dog that ever wanted free money sent their way without having to deal with all that "loan process" business hopped right on the bandwagon.

We were considering and planning some kind of Kickstarter since before the Doublefine one. We do think pretty far ahead on things. Moving quickly on them is another matter, but that's to be expected with an all-volunteer staff :)

Just saying, it can't be said that this takes the place of the Support OCR fundraiser, that would be against the Kickstarter guidelines. This was a fundraiser for the FF6 album printing.

Kickstarter prohibits funding for charities, causes, OR ongoing projects. We could not have done a Kickstarter solely for OCR itself, because OCR is not a one-time thing that can be completed. It's an ongoing project. We DID forego a normal donation drive this year because we didn't want to solicit money from people for anything OCR-related multiple times in a short period.

Can someone just fill me in on what the point of having a kickstarter is, versus just asking people to send money through paypal for the price of production and shipping? Either way, with money involved you technically have to license it anyway for it to be strictly 'legal'. Nothing gray about that.

Much like how we've done various promotional experiments in the past, such as the Facebook "Like" campaign for Maverick Rising (which was a huge success), we were interested in the viability of Kickstarter as a fundraising platform for a given project (with excess going to bonus content and the site itself, as we've mentioned). We were excited to see that it was substantially more effective than traditional fundraising. In any given year, OCR receives <$10k in donations (and even that number is pretty darn high!) and that's WITH a major push for our "April is OCR Month" donation campaign. To see us raise $15k in <24 hours completely blew away all expectations, and showed that Kickstarter is much more effective for this kind of thing.

Keep in mind that at conventions like Otakon (just ended) and MAGfest, where OCR typically has a panel, we will offer physical albums as giveaway bonuses for people who pay ~$25 for OCR merchandise like t-shirts, hoodies, stickers. etc. We normally have a fairly small number of people take us up on that offer. Based on that, we did not think a great number of people would chip in TWICE that amount. But again, it goes to show that Kickstarter offers much more visibility for project fundraising, and more efficacy.

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Everything Andy said above is correct.

Why do I get the feeling you were gonna say something but zirc said it before you could? XD

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