Just Kidding, Square Enix Still Hates Its Biggest Fans

from the what-was-i-thinking? dept

Human beings are creatures of habit. As such, we generally feel most comfortable when we're in familiar surroundings and when things typically turn out as we expect. With that in mind, I realize some of you readers may have found yourselves in an unfamiliar and distressing new world when I wrote about a Final Fantasy fan film that appeared to have Square Enix's tacit approval for a Kickstarter project. The makers of what looks like a fantastic web series mentioned on their Kickstarter page that they had proactively gone to Square Enix to make sure they knew what was happening and that the trailer for the series actually made an appearance on the company's website. "What the hell is this all about?", you must have thought. "What's next, cats and dogs living in harmony? Pepsi admitting that Coke is totally better? What are we going to do!?!?"

Well, rest easy, because Square Enix's legal team is here to remind you that they still totally hate their biggest fans and all is just as wrong with the world as it ever was. You already know where we're going with this, so here are the claims from the DMCA takedown notice they sent over the Kickstarter project.
· The project itself is in infringement of our copyrights and should be removed in its entirety from Kickstarter.

· The project itself admits it is an unofficial fan project in its title “Final Fantasy VII: The Web Series (Unofficial Fan Project).

· The description of the project itself claims to use the copyrighted characters and events of Final Fantasy VII.
Not only did the projcet admit it on Kickstarter, they admitted it to you guys when they reached out to let you know what they were doing. And they made a point to secure music licensing. To go the DMCA route rather than finding an amicable way to properly license this with them would be bad enough, but to know what the filmmakers were doing and let them get this far only to dash their project on the rocks of your legal team is downright sadistic. The project's page is now down, noting that there is an intellectual property dispute, which means prospective backers can't contribute any longer.

Via their Facebook page, the team let their fans know that they're still trying to get something worked out with Square Enix and managed to deliver the message with a touch of irony any Final Fantasy 7 fan will appreciate.
Ladies and Gentlemen!

You will have noticed that the Square Enix legal team have taken an interest in our project. We're in the process of opening up discussions with the team regarding the ongoing status of our project and hopefully the continuation of our Kickstarter campaign. We'll keep you up to date on any envelopments.

"These days, all it takes for your dreams to come true is money and power."
- President Shinra
Here's hoping Square Enix muzzles their legal dogs and does the right thing by their fans, because it would be a shame to see one of the most popular games ever taint its reputation by being DMCA bullies over a harmless fan film.

Filed Under: fan films, final fantasy, infringement
Companies: square enix


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  1. identicon
    Kevin Kess, 2 Aug 2013 @ 3:42pm

    Just Kidding, Square Enix Still Hates Its Biggest Fans

    Okay. I understand that Square Enix has the legal right to protect their intellectual properties. I can even understand that they want to make sure that there are certain things they don't want themselves or certain consumers to be seeing in terms of content.

    But, a fan film (and one based on Final Fantasy 7 no less) is what gets their legal team in a rage?

    Companies like Square Enix and even Hasbro could stand to learn the difference between someone stealing the characters made under their home studios and passing them off as their own versus those who are merely paying tribute to their works as their way of saying "thank you" by making fan films, abridged series videos on YouTube and games made by the fans.


    This is just as bad as Hasbro shutting down 2 Friendship is Magic based fan games and even suing one fan of said 4th My Little Pony incarnation for the simple act of making plush toys and other memorabilia.

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