Ricecracker

10228 Haunted House

526 posts in this topic

You can also look at it as give and take, no one takes issue with fans basing their modular MOCs on the structure of official sets. How many variations of Cafe Corner have we seen over the years? I would be fine with an official set being based on my MOC.

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Maybe LEGO ought to start selling their products pre-built and glued to prevent anyone from building custom models that may one day resemble things LEGO wants to release. You know, just as a precaution against future lawsuits and such. If no one can MOC, no one can sue!

I mean, considering all the Modular Building MOCs people have been making over the years, LEGO may just as well cancel the series so they don't risk angering some AFOL who already built a library, or a movie theater, or a restaurant, etc.

That's not to say that the creator of that sand green haunted house doesn't have a legitimate grievance with LEGO about this, but that's up to him/her and only him/her.

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You can also look at it as give and take, no one takes issue with fans basing their modular MOCs on the structure of official sets. How many variations of Cafe Corner have we seen over the years? I would be fine with an official set being based on my MOC.

I think there's a fundamental difference between a fan copying a production set and tweaking it or a fan copying a fan and placing the model on their shelf, and anyone, be they fan or company, copying a whole design for sale. If I MOC a Cafe Corner style building and put it on my shelf, that's one thing.

I have a cherished little model of a TARDIS from Doctor Who that I reverse engineered from Mark Stafford's designs and I put out at public displays. But every time someone compliments me on it, I point out it was Mark's concepts on Brickshelf that inspired it. And I've never tried to make money off of Mark's design by selling it (I did give a copy gratis to a friend as a graduation gift once).

Just a little while ago, there was outrage on EB over the prospect of EBay sellers copying MOCs and selling either full kits or full instructions they themselves did not design. In the case of this set, if this is indeed what happened, I'd hope to see a similar reaction. We need to respect each others' designs. Imitation may be the highest form of flattery, but when you imitate you should at very least hat-tip.

I'm not arguing that techniques are sacrosanct and not copyable. That's how we grow as a community, by seeing how others did things and adding onto those ideas. But this isn't a stolen window design used in a different context. This is a large mass of stolen design elements used in the same exact context and same configuration, haunted house begat haunted house.

I'm not trying to be a troublemaker here. But I care about the designs of the community and our fantastically talented builders getting their due credit. That's all. I'd hope the rest of the community cares about that shared ethic as well.

-John

Edited by TJJohn12

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I honestly can't understand how can you think that TLG will let such thing to happen. It is a quite big company you know.

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I honestly can't understand how can you think that TLG will let such thing to happen. It is a quite big company you know.

That's precisely why I think it could happen. I work in a big entity. The larger the organization, the more failure points and the easier things slip through the cracks.

-John

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Just a little while ago, there was outrage on EB over the prospect of EBay sellers copying MOCs and selling either full kits or full instructions they themselves did not design. In the case of this set, if this is indeed what happened, I'd hope to see a similar reaction. We need to respect each others' designs. Imitation may be the highest form of flattery, but when you imitate you should at very least hat-tip.

There are a lot of detail differences between the haunted houses, while those eBay sellers had carbon copied the MOCs. If I choose the sell an MOC on eBay, I don't feel like I have to credit Lego for their established techniques. And that's what's going on here, the haunted house has an establised visual style whcih if you deviate from is no longer perceived as a haunted house. So what's left is the color choice and build techniques, many of which have been around for a while.

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The video indicates that the idea stemmed from a sketch done at the same time as the Vampire castle, and is based on the scary concepts of the Munsters House.

munsterhouse02.jpg

Original Colour Pilot Image of Munster House

Now clearly this is not the 'Munsters house' but a generic 'haunted property'. So perhaps the designer was inspired by the other photos. Im sure Lego have been inspired elsewhere. However normally there is a complete review process to ensure that official models are not copies from others... exactly for all the posturing now occurring on this thread. In the end the AFOL's will get a fantastic model which many will love; kids will definitely love and is wild and wacky. Heck - even girls may like the imagery and open up more market.

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Why on earth would it matter if LEGO took some design cues from talented fan builders? It's a haunted house, there are only so many different ways to interpret the concept. It's still a fantastic set.

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Why on earth would it matter if LEGO took some design cues from talented fan builders? It's a haunted house, there are only so many different ways to interpret the concept. It's still a fantastic set.

The designer admits in his video that he doesn't design buildings and that it was challenging. It is not outside any realm of possibility that he looked online for inspiration and used techniques and styles that he found, even if it was sub-consciously. If you look at the list of similarities and almost exact copying of techniques that TJJohn put together its suspiciously similar.

It matters for two reasons, first its someone else's design and that would be stealing someone's intellectual property. Second reason is because LEGO is monetizing fan creations on Cuusoo and giving 1% of the sales to the fan who designs a successful product. If they are using someone's idea they should be compensated by LEGO's own logic.

By all measures this will be a successful set, its gorgeous, but its strikingly similar to another creation. I hope that there is more to this than we know about and that the original builder get credit or that this is some sort of accident. However, there is nothing wrong with people asking questions.

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With Lego's increasing worldwide popularity and more and more talented AFOL's showcasing their MOC's it would be increasingly impossible for LEGO to produce these advanced and AFOL popular special sets if LEGO designers aren't allowed to be inspired and learn from skilled builds worldwide even if they say that is't the case with their models.

The alternative would be that LEGO sticks to only produce simple sets for the core customers and I think that most AFOL's would find that bad.

I see similarities but also several differences in the images shown and the original model, so therefore it is clearly not a copy in my opinion.

Edited by Dane

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On the one hand, I find it sorta funny people are trying hard to note the differences when the similarities really are very prevalent. I mean, yeah, they're both "Haunted Houses," but the specifics of the design, the columns and the edging of the building, and the windows, and the details on the roof are, like... mirrors. They really very, very close to each other in ways that seem unlikely to have just happened.

BUT on the other [and more important] hand, when you buy a product from LEGO, you're really buying the parts, and the design is basically a bonus. I mean, instructions are available in PDF online right away, or before a product's release. So there's no money in the instructions. Ergo, LEGO isn't making money off someone elses' design. They're making money off they bricks they're selling you, and the design is gravy.

And there's enough brilliance in there outside the simple outside of the building that the official designer earned his keep [the phonograph and attic ladder probably handle that on their own].

It remains the greatest of all LEGO sets, and if it was influenced by that other design [which we will never know], that guy should pat himself on the back for getting so close to the mark.

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I'm not sure what you guys are on about all this copying business, It's a Victorian Style Mansion.

Which you see quite a lot of on the east coast of the states.

they are quite famous and all look very similar, so the only thing being copied is the original! :sick:

Jordan-House.jpg

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The designer admits in his video that he doesn't design buildings and that it was challenging. It is not outside any realm of possibility that he looked online for inspiration and used techniques and styles that he found, even if it was sub-consciously. If you look at the list of similarities and almost exact copying of techniques that TJJohn put together its suspiciously similar.

It matters for two reasons, first its someone else's design and that would be stealing someone's intellectual property. Second reason is because LEGO is monetizing fan creations on Cuusoo and giving 1% of the sales to the fan who designs a successful product. If they are using someone's idea they should be compensated by LEGO's own logic.

By all measures this will be a successful set, its gorgeous, but its strikingly similar to another creation. I hope that there is more to this than we know about and that the original builder get credit or that this is some sort of accident. However, there is nothing wrong with people asking questions.

Something like this isn't unique enough to be called intellectual property. It's a house. Musicians steal musical motifs from each other all the time, and very rarely does that translate into an intellectual property lawsuit. How many pop songs use a 1, 4, 5 chord progression? All of them? Taking ideas from other artists and expanding on them is just the name of the game in any creative field, LEGO construction included. That's how you grow as an artist.

There is way too much gray area here. Fans have been designing space marine minifigures since LEGO Space launched. Now, LEGO's released a space marine minifigure. Does that mean they stole the idea from the fans? Clearly, they were reacting to the high demand for a LEGO space marine. Maybe I built my own haunted house before this one got released. Does that mean I deserve 1% of the profit?

It might be a similar design, but it's impossible to say if it was "stolen" from a fan creation. I tend to think that's unlikely. And besides, so what?

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The butler could be inspired by.......

lurch4.jpg

Funny you should say that because in the video he calls him Lurch. :classic:

When I look at this set, I get the feeling TLG is trying to keep people on CUUSOO with the minifigs. The chef's torso is a perfect purist option if you want to make Shaun of the Dead :devil: (You know, the Winchester project which they decided not to make) and the sheer amount of zombie heads and torso's in this suggest they don't want to deprive annoyed fans of getting the minifigs, by pretending bloodstains are spilt soup. :wink:

Maybe the fact that this set was coming out was even more reason to reject the Shaun of the Dead project.

Wow! That strikes out Vampyre Castle! Definite Buy for me! Great Job Lego! :laugh:

P.S. I've never seen so many members viewing a topic at one go! :wink:

Omega X

Mood: Very excited

Before I saw this set I was thinking about getting the Zombie set and the Vampire Castle but I may have to drop the castle now I've seen this (I prefer the ghosts to the manbats and the zombie chef is gold).

Same thought. This definitely trumps Vampire Castle and will be my one big Monster Fighter set that I must buy.

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One last comment regarding the "sub"-topic...

I pointed out that it looked similar to Badsneaker's haunted mansions and I have been astonished when I saw John's creation the NILTC Haunted House...default_huh.gif

Personally, I definitely believe that the TLG designer has been inspired by both creations and, for the details that he was "greatly" inspired, by John's one the NILTC Haunted House...

I would be proud if TLG released a product based on my creation (it will never happen though...default_sing.gif) and I am glad that TLG created such a product as it is definitely easier for me to buy it, than getting the bricks and trying to copy a great MOC...

Anyhow, TLG will know about this issue by now... and I am sure that if "work" has been copied or saved days of creation/thinking/building process they will acknowledge it and get in touch with the creator of the NILTC Haunted House. At least to say thank you!!! or at most to offer him/her a designer job...default_classic.gif

Edited by SwissBrick

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One last comment regarding the "sub"-topic...

I pointed out that it looked similar to Badsneaker's haunted mansions and I have been astonished when I saw John's creation...default_huh.gif

Personally, I definitely believe that the TLG designer has been inspired by both creations and, for the details that he was "greatly" inspired, by John's one...

Just to clarify, the NILTC Haunted House is not my creation. I'm still working on tracking down the original artist. In fact, credit needs to go to Gianluca Morelli who brought up the original connection between the two models. I'm just the indignant voice crying in the wilderness for respect of intellectual property; I am not the artist themselves.

-John

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I think that one of the core inspirations both for the MOC'er(s) and the Lego design team were the fairly common HO scale "Haunted House" models produced by Polar Lights, Faller and I believe Aurora back in the day. All were mainly based on the "Psycho House / Bates Motel" building on Universal Studios back lot. I believe even the painting instructions for the Polar Lights kit specify a gray green color for the building.

On a side note, how on earth has Lego managed to dodge Universal Studios normally rabid lawyers on the whole Monster Fighters line? Is it that they havey danced close to the line, but never stepped over it by using the F word, the D word or any other specific names? I think Universal having a fit over the Bates Motel is a much more worrying thought than anything involving a moc.

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OMG this set is so full of fun and win. My wife will very much enjoy this. Now I need to make some ghost busters or at least Paranormal Investigators haha I am on cloud nine at the moment. I love the Haunted house.

Edited by Solscud007

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I love this set, it looks great! I was looking forward to this one, and I'm not disappointed. Lovely colour scheme and details.

That being said, I must say the copying thing puts me off a little bit. It's obviously very similar (the windows, the inverted slopes, ...). And I'm not sure what to think about it. It sure is a lovely set but it's almost a copy of a fan's creation. On the other hand, great minds think alike. :tongue: I'm sure LEGO designers look at fan creations for inspiration, nothing wrong with that and I would be honoured to find some things based on my MOCs. It's probably/hopefully a coincidence, either way I hope we can get a decent explanation for the similarities.

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Oh dear. I just watched the video. He used the D word (Dracula) and even worse he named the butler as "Lurch". I'm betting the LegoLegal team is building themselves a MOC about now.

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On a side note, how on earth has Lego managed to dodge Universal Studios normally rabid lawyers on the whole Monster Fighters line? Is it that they havey danced close to the line, but never stepped over it by using the F word, the D word or any other specific names? I think Universal having a fit over the Bates Motel is a much more worrying thought than anything involving a moc.

The books that introduced Dracula and Frankenstein are in the public domain and can freely be used by anyone. Universal has no claim on that.

EDIT: They would probably have more of a case with the "Lurch"-esque butler, even though it's not officially called that by LEGO. That's certainly far more close to something that may be copyrighted and all that jazz.

But I imagine LEGO cleared this with Universal before release and got their okay. LEGO has after all done sets for intellectual properties owned by Universal in the past (Jurassic Park III) and with the CUUSOO Shaun of the Dead and Back to the Future sets I would think they have good connections between the two companies.

Edited by Graysmith

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Why do the ghosts have feet here:

gallery_2221_205_28212.jpg

When there clearly aren't feet in the actual set?

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Why do the ghosts have feet here:

When there clearly aren't feet in the actual set?

The ghost(s) have legs also in this pic, and in the set cover picture. Remains to be seen if there's legs in the final product. Personally I hope against them.

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The ghost(s) have legs also in this pic, and in the set cover picture. Remains to be seen if there's legs in the final product. Personally I hope against them.

I guess they will have a set of legs along with those 1x2 bricks. It'll depend on which look you like better.

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