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Signatures and Copyright updated 2021 - read the rules please, people


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Y'all please read the rules about sigs. I've seen a number of people who vastly exceed the limits (especially with those dragon pics added in) and I really don't feel like PMing you all, posting it in the relevant thread at the main staff board, checking up that you've fixed it, and then posting that too. So I'm giving y'all a week to fix your sigs, thereafter I'm going to get pissy if I have to follow the above procedure.


The rules can be found here, but the relevant bits are this:


1. Signature text, including any BB or HTML code, is limited by the message board to 400 characters.


2. Signatures that are text only must contain no more than six lines of text (including line breaks) as displayed on the message board.


3. Signatures with an image must contain no more than two additional lines of standard size 10 text (including line breaks, quotation text and bars, etc) in addition to the image, as displayed on the message board. Not 2 and a half, not 3, just 2. And no you can't make the font HUGE either.


4. Signature images must be no more than 500 pixels wide and no more than 125 pixels high. That's ALL the images. You can't have a sig pic of that size PLUS dragons all over the place.


All in all your signatures cannot exceed the space it would take up as limited above.



Inserted from old thread on 31 Jan 2021:


I'm going to copy and past what Kivam said on the matter, but here is what it boils down to:



It's ok to post an article here for discussion, so long as you're making clear that it's from some other place, and include a link to the source.


What you need to do if you are posting someone else's work:

  1. Source it. Don't post it as your own - include a link.
  2. Don't quote the whole thing. Unless absolutely necessary, post only the relevant parts of articles, the key parts you want to discuss.
  3. NEVER post articles or anything else that is locked behind a paywall. If you had to pay to get access to it, you don't have permission to repost it.
  4. For pictures, particularly for signatures - if you are going to use someone else's work as the base for a signature, make sure you change it enough that it's essentially unrecognizable.
  5. When you can - say, when you want to use a picture from an artist's website, ask permission. Send a simple "hey, I'd like to use your image as part of a signature/avatar" e-mail. Most artists will say yes.


Now for the long version (as posted by Admin Kivam in 2001) ... and please take the time to read it through, mkay? :wink:




1. What Is A Copyright?


This is the most basic question, and to answer it, I'm only going to focus on US law (there are some distinctions in other countries, but we're a US based site and the basic principles are the same).
Copyright is probably best understood as a "bundle of rights" that belong to the copyright holder (typically the creator of a work). Those rights include:
  • The right to
    the work (to make a copy of it, whether by printing another copy or by - for our purposes - posting it somewhere else);
  • The right to
    the work (to sell copies, etc.);
  • The right to
    make derivative works
    (that is, to take the copyrighted work and make other creative things
    on it - such as a movie based on a book, or a signature based on a picture);
  • The right to
    publicly perform
    the work (such as a
    play or a musical composition); and
  • The right to
    publicly display
    the work (such as by posting a picture to a website)

2. What Can Be Copyrighted, and How Do You Get a Copyright?


OK, so that's what it means to say that you have a copyright in something - you have the exclusive right to make copies, to distribute, etc. - but what does that mean? Can you copyright the phone book? How about a sunset? And do you have to do anything special to get a copyright?
As a matter of US law, copyright protects "original works of authorship" - that means
original literary, dramatic, musical, or artistic work. It includes not only written words, but pictures, dance choreography, music and recordings, compilations, and even architectural works.
And you don't have to do anything special to get a copyright. The instant you create a new work, you own the copyright in it. Of course,
the copyright gets you advantages (like the ability to sue for certain types of damages, and ease of proving that the work is yours) but even works that are not registered are copyrighted.
And yes, that includes
posts on our forums
. Every single post that is an original piece of writing - like this one - is a copyrightable and copyrighted work.
(Dramatic Pause for Gasps of Shock
Does that mean that you can't quote someone else's post because it's "making a copy" of their copyrighted work? That you can't print a page from the net to read on your way home?
I need to get back to work, but I'll be back to answer those questions later.

3. How Do You Infringe (Violate) a Copyright?

Given all that, how do you infringe a copyright? The answer's pretty basic, particularly when it comes to how it'll be done on our forums:
post someone else's work without permission.
Again, that applies to articles, essays, pictures, videos - anything copyrightable.

4. So Why Aren't We Violating Copyright Every Day?

If that's the rule, it would seem like we're infringing a copyright every day: posting articles, videos, even just copying other people's posts. But that's not the case. Why?
Because of the two key words in that sentence above:
Permission does not need to be express. You don't need someone to say "here is my work, and it can be copied." It can be implied. How so?
Well, when you post something to a forum for discussion, it's implied that other people will quote it and respond to it. From the context, we can say that you gave permission for us to quote it - and therefore, quoting it doesn't infringe your copyright. The same way, posting a video to you tube, and allowing embedding implies that you have no problem with people using that embed code and allow posting.
There's also another concept that's relevant:
Fair Use.
Basically, "fair use" is a rule that says that copyright owners must give permission to people using it for
non commercial purposes
for things like discussion and criticism. Fair use is a complex doctrine, but for our purposes, it basically means that
it's ok to post an article here for discussion, so long as you're making clear that it's from some other place, and include
a link to the source

5. One Last Point - Ideas Cannot Be Copyrighted

Last thing to remember is that copyright covers an author's original
, not the underlying idea. So, if someone writes an article about how DPR is the greatest mafia player of all time, that doesn't mean that nobody else can talk about DPR being the best mafia player of all time without violating the copyright. They just can't copy
that first author did it - his language, the structure of his argument, etc.





Edited by Elgee
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What are the dragons? Can they not be put into a siggy perhaps for those who cannot be without them? Kae - you want to hook your phone up to wifi when you are at home, it makes a big difference.


It's from some game people play, Ithi - you have to hatch and raise dragons, or something like that. The pictures of them are absolutely gorgeous! I'm sure they can be put into a sig in some form - maybe the Sig making people should discuss this matter and come up with a solution?


Btw, you seem to have 4 lines of text (including a blank line) under your sig :wink:

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No need for that, Ems. It's posted here, so I will assume people are reading it like they should. If they haven't, they'll be scrubbing pots in a week's time :wink:


Oh and Ithi, yours looks fine now.

Edited by Elgee
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Some suggestions for people putting dragon eggs and such in their sigs:



Oh, and yes. I play too. :wink:

Link to my scroll -> Xo6B.gif

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*leans down to Mirsh's tummy*


You don't give Mirsh any trouble, you listening to me? We just want a quick in and out job, so you keep your end of the deal, so she can come back soon. Then grow up fast, learn to read at a ridiculously young age, read the books and come join the warders *nodnod*


I think he's ready now, Mirsh.

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  • Elgee changed the title to Signatures and Copyright updated 2021 - read the rules please, people

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