fablefire wrote:Of course not. They'd be horrible lawyers. If I thought they were love-and-peace hippies, I wouldn't have looked into intellectual property case study again for this piece. Yes, the piece should remind people of LoZ because that's my take on the theme. If it didn't represent LoZ, I would've been rejected for being off theme. They can sue, but I'd be interested to know how they plan to stake a claim on the combination of objects that are found in RPGs everywhere.
Here's my $.02 -
If it's still here, Woot must think it's okay to print.
* Fable's depiction of the wooden sword can in no way be a problem. Why? Because in the game you see a simple sword - this design is the designer's own vision. In the game the sword doesn't have the sides that go downwards (on the handle).
* Bottle - you can't copyright a bottle. And in the LoZ game, there's no cork like that. There is one in OoT, but it's a bottle - they exist everywhere.
* The faerie itself - I thought this was a problem, but there is one important detail you have to look at. In the games, the faeries have TWO pairs of wings. One large, with one smaller at the bottom. This shirt uses only one pair of curved, almost birdlike wings. Also, the body of the faerie in the games (OoT --> PH) is a solid circle. This design depicts a faerie whose body isn't a perfect circle - it has "frays" or sharp edges.
* Rupees - Yes, anyone with eyes can tell they're meant to depict them. But real rupees in the games have 4 ridges extending from the center on the sides to the edges. If you look at the shirt, Fable has a ridge drawn in by the center points. This means that they are depicted as shapes, similar to the "marquise" cut for gems.
But if you're still not satisfied with that argument - rupees are dual-sided I believe. Nowhere in Fable's design does he show that the shapes have both sides raised. So he could argue they are shapes that have one flat side, and one that is raised. Look at the shape touching the side of the sword - the other side isn't raised, it appears perfectly flat.
* Pixelated hearts - Nintendo didn't come up with the heart shape. The heart shape was made to look that way because of the limitations of the NES and its wonderful 8 bits. The heart shape on the shirt is slightly different (VERY slightly). IP does include shapes though. So if you had a Coca-Cola bottle shape, you could get in trouble for using it in your shirt.
With that said, if Woot does have a problem with anything, I think all you'd have to do is rework the hearts so that they are actual heart shapes and not pixelated. If that was done before printing (Like I said, if they had a problem they would've knocked it out already), there would be little potential for problems.
I don't think they'd strip you of the win because of a mistake - IP can be a complicated issue. But if they are worrying, that'd be a good safeguard move.
PS - I wasn't able to find many examples, but regarding the use of those objects in video games - Super Mario 2 used hearts, but it is owned by Nintendo. It seems a lot of these objects were made or licensed by Nintendo. But like I said, I didn't find all examples out there, and I think it'll be fine.