Legal obligations

Legal obligations in the video game industry are the rules that Have to be followed by a company or else the law will get involved and their game wont be marketed and the company might be displayed. The famous legal obligation is “copyright law”  and “IP protection”. copyright is a assignable right which gives a company protection of their idea over a set amount of years meaning if someone tries to copy their design they can legally take them to court.

Regulations

regulations are used in the industry to help keep people safe whether in the workplace or at home. within the gaming industry the famous regulation is the PEGI system which was introduced in 2003. This means a company needs their game to be assessed to see what the game contains. if the game contains a lot of violence, nudity or graphic horror the assessor would give the game a PEGI rating of 18 meaning the game could only be sold to people who are 18 or older meaning children can’t buy it (though that doesn’t stop their parents ). while some people believe that these PEGI ratings are for our protection and for the protection of our children while other people believe that they are pointless since parents still buy their children the game anyway. I believe there’s a certain leniency when it comes to age rating. sure its alright for a 15-year-old to play a 18-year-old game but letting a 10-year-old play it is madness.  Children are very impressionable before 15 and so video games might have an effect on their psyche.

copyright

Copyright law began in England from the Statute of Anne 1709 common. The Copyright Act was then passed in 1911. The law gives artists  (literary, dramatic, musical, art or  sound recordings) of published editions, rights to control the ways in which their material may be used. The copyright law covers the public performance and broadcast, copying, renting issuing, adapting and lending copies to the public. In many cases, the Artists will also have the right to be identified as the author and to object to distortions or remixes of his work. This law is now international and protects the big name artists. i believe that the copyright law has benefited may people over the years but has become too strict. a lot of old generation musicians started their careers by doing covers on past artists (standing on the shoulders of giants so to speak) but now, if a some includes any part of an existing song without sorting out the legal issues it will likely be taken down.

Registered Design

A registered design is a legal document that protects the   IP’s (intellectual property)  visual design. The registered design document protects the creation of the shape as well as its configuration or composition of pattern or color.
If you do not apply for a registered design, you will receive limited protection through unregistered Design Right or copyright. A registered design document can only the three-dimensional shape whereas Two dimensional designs can be protected by copyright but this is more difficult to enforce than a Registered Design. Protection only lasts for a maximum of 15 years.

A good example of legal obligations in the industry is bungee copyrighting claiming right over the master chief character and model  which ultimately made them rich due to the popularity of the character. Back in 2000-2001, while writing up a contract, Microsoft Game studios decided to let Bungie keep the rights and copyright the character “Master chief” believing that character wouldn’t live past the game. To their amazement, Master chief went in a completely different direction to what they believed. He is now possibly one of the most recognisable characters in shooters so Microsoft needs to keep coming back to Bungie if they want to make a halo game. I see this is a incredibly intelligent move on Bungee’s part and it shows us that if we belive in our creations then maybe they’ll achieve greatness.

In my opinon these laws help keep the industry on their feet and stops companies from constantly leeching off other peoples ideas. It aslo helps a person protect his creations that they worked so hard for. without these laws in place the video game industry would of collapsed by now instead of being as strong as ever.

 

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