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Licensing Edit

Here's an important question -- does this story hold the proper rights to illustrate characters like The Doctor's TARDIS and Jamie McCrimmon? Does it literally use the words TARDIS and Jamie? If not, we must follow the precedent of stories like AiaPU. OS25 (Talk) 12:18, April 29, 2017 (UTC)

Not at all! With regard to the TARDIS, it mentions a blue police box which transforms into a woman with the ability to manipulate time. Jamie isn't actually in it - a "Scottish boy" is merely mentioned. Victoria is in it very briefly, where she's referred to simply as a young girl with a surname to do with "water" and the first name of a famous English queen. All above board as far as I can see. Mythicia77 16:01, August 13, 2017 (UTC)
Yeah the story doesn't mention any character by name, but through very clever description you can clearly tell who each character is in the story. Licensing doesn't really come into it as the words "the Doctor" and "TARDIS" are simply not present in the story. It's identical to PROSE: Toy Story, in that regard. --Revan\Talk 16:27, August 13, 2017 (UTC)
Thank you for explaining. This looks like the case of Schrödinger Victoria. When a BBC lawyer looks at the book, she's not there, but when a reader pops their head she appears in all her glory. This frankly cannot stand. As correctly pointed out by OttselSpy25 (whom I sincerely thank for being the first to note the problem), the wiki has long ago developed a way of dealing with these wink-wink characters, which is nicely summarised at Adventures in a Pocket Universe (audio series) We have separate pages for
etc. etc. etc. As tempting as it might be to take the Faction Paradox (series) situation and apply it here, we cannot for several reasons.
  1. Faction Paradox was debated on Panopticon at least 4 times. And the amount of effort NateBumber put into the a) justification of established connections and b) delineation of cases that are less clear is both commendable and mind-boggling. The eventual argument that won the day was not that we accept every license-bending description if the authors said they would like us to. It was nowhere near that simple. The reality of the FP is that authors zig and zag in and out of Doctor Who licensed properties carrying their characters with them. NateBumber has developed an elaborate web of connections that reach some of the descriptions but not all (as the list above shows).
  2. And this is a second reason we can't apply the FP treatment to this series. There is no treatment. It's tedious case-by-case analysis, aiming to trace a character or element through licensed properties to the place it was only described.
When we have a properly licensed appearance of Victoria, Jamie, etc. referring to the events of this story, then Victoria may be brought back onto this page. For now, the connection should be mentioned on the story notes and the legal situation explained, as is done on many pages provided for comparison above. The page of Girl (Legacies) or whatever you might wanna call her based on the text of the story should mention the intention of her being Victoria Waterfield in the BTS section and explain the reasons. But Victoria Waterfield be she cannot, as Rule 2 of T:VS it violate will. Amorkuz 12:59, August 15, 2017 (UTC)

Over the past few weeks I have read the first six novels in the Lethbridge-Stewart series, in addition to several of the short stories. As you note, the series does not hold the license to use "the Doctor" and "TARDIS" as concepts, like a number of similar spin off series that have popped up over the last few years. The unique situtaion about the Lethbridge-Stewart series is that it has made the effort of obtaining the license to other characters and concepts from the Doctor Who universe in order to truly establish itself as taking place within the same universe.

In regard to the question of "is the Cosmic Hobo the Doctor?". The short answer: of course he is. The Beast of Fang Rock contains several scenes where characters mention "the Do-" or similar, before the "Cosmic Hobo" alias is used, which is explained in-universe as a government alias for the Doctor, who they have noticed popping up several times over the course of the 20th century. While Amorkuz, you may stipulate that this is cannot be the Doctor due to rights reasons, the story (and others) specifically state that the "Cosmic Hobo" was the man whom Travers and Lethbridge-Stewart encountered in the London Underground, and who also appeared at Fang Rock in relation to the Horror of Fang Rock TV story. The series does hold the rights to the concepts and characters from these stories, and leave no shadow of a doubt that the Doctor is the character to whom they are referring.

The sad truth is that while we can go along the argument that "no rights = no appearance", we are doing the factual accuracy of this wiki a sad disservice by doing so. The people at Candy Jar are doing nothing wrong by including references to the Doctor in their stories, by all rights they should, considering that their stories take place within the DWU. The references to the Doctor are all what they should be, merely references, and leave no room for doubt that they are meaning the Doctor, with very clever use of the English language to emphasise this without violating copyright law.

If you were to read the stories for yourself, you would certainly see the way these references are put across. In the past I have been skeptical about how the series can hold its own without a full license to Doctor Who, yet after reading them, their validity is very much there. --Revan\Talk 19:41, August 15, 2017 (UTC)

Once again, the validity of these stories is not in question until Cosmic Hobo become The Doctor. At that moment, the stories start violating Rule 2 of T:VS. Let me quote it in full: "A story that isn't commercially licensed by all of the relevant copyright holders doesn't count." Note the emphasis on "commercially" (whether the story is marketed as free or not) and "all". Indeed, there are many spin-offs, and each of them should stay within their legal boundaries. If they want to include explicit references to the Doctor, they should pay for them. Their approach at the moment seems slightly different: as in take a promotional photo from the BBC website and use it to cash in on the general hype of the moment by referencing a character they will never have the rights to and that has yet to appear even in BBC stories. It is certainly up to BBC to pursue or not the legal side of the matter. But "holding its own" this series isn't, sorry.
Let me be very clear about the consequences of being lax here: if we allow references to the Doctor from CJB, then the first mention of this BBC character would be by CJB. This shall not happen.
I also disagree that we are doing a disservice by upholding the current legal situation and our own validity rules. There are plenty of ways to provide complete information without violating either. Plenty of connections remain behind the validity line: Petronella Osgood and Tom Osgood, The Woman (The End of Time) and the Doctor, all the non-equivalent equivalences above. At the minimum, copious BTS notes would do the trick. At a maximum, the Legacy (video game) approach can be used with a separate wiki focused on the LS series and representing everything as the authors/editors dream in a copyright-free world with extensive linking between the two wikis.
But pretending that this is a fully licensed Doctor Who range is false advertisement. The publisher can engage in it at their own risk. But the wiki should not be party to it. They are not the first ones not to have complete license. They should be treated as everyone else. And the quality of their righting (or lack thereof) has absolutely nothing to do with it. Amorkuz 20:07, August 15, 2017 (UTC)

Another perspective, coming purely from a place of Devil's Advocacy: the authors intended the Cosmic Hobo to be the Doctor, and everyone who reads the story understands the Cosmic Hobo to be the Doctor. What good are we as a wiki if we refuse to acknowledge such a basic and obvious element of the story? NateBumber 20:14, August 15, 2017 (UTC)

My point exactly. This story literally is a complete and confusing mess if you remove the Doctor Who elements from it. The story is completely propped up by having knowledge of The Web of Fear. The wiki receives increasingly negative press on forums and social media for our strange rejection of stories based on strange conceptions of validity. The fact that the Cosmic Hobo is clearly intended to be the Doctor is a simple truth of this series, yet we have once again over-examined such a basic notion of storytelling, and made things complicated for our readers as a result. --Revan\Talk 20:56, August 15, 2017 (UTC)

With all due respect, I would ask to adhere to T:BOUND. When I saw potential ways of improving our validity rules to improve coverage on this wiki, I went to discuss this on Panopticon. The thread is still open and everyone is welcome to contribute. Any issue with "negative press on forums and social media" can be discussed there, preferably with exact quotes and links rather than in this unsubstantiated and irresponsible manner.
Secondly, why is it believed that moving unlicensed elements to story notes and BTS sections equates to their "removal"? This thought keeps reappearing and has absolutely no basis under it. Why is it that the readers of the books are supposed to understand that "Cosmic Hobo" is the Doctor, but those same readers bumping into a faithful description of the story about the Cosmic Hobo would suddenly be horribly confused despite hyperlinks and helpful explanations in the story notes?
Thirdly, if there is "a complete and confusing mess" in understanding the stories, it was the choice of the publisher to engage in it. In fact, this is the best confirmation from you that this project does not "hold its own", primarily because they do not own what they need. Let me quote the praise from Revanvolatrelundar: "The unique situtaion about the Lethbridge-Stewart series is that it has made the effort of obtaining the license to other characters and concepts from the Doctor Who universe in order to truly establish itself as taking place within the same universe". So this is considered a good thing. However, by allowing them to get away with not obtaining the license to the most important character, we would encourage them to drop all pretence and use whichever characters they want. That is what you are proposing. This position is absolutely legally indefensible. It will make the wiki accomplices in potential copyright infringement cases. It would be sufficient to prove that wiki coverage improved sales to open up the parent company, Wikia, Inc., to legal damages.
But let us look at this situation from the point of view of policy. I can see that allowing BBC to introduce their characters the way they intend strangely did not meet much sympathy (not yet at any rate). Well, in that case imagine that Zygon: When Being You Just Isn't Enough (home video) features a character of the Cosmic Hobo, or the Matchstick Man, or the Grumpy Granddad. Indeed, why not all of them? The more the merrier, for this kind of production. I'll let your imaginations do the rest: human brain is the best CGI. If having a license to one DWU concept entitles you to provide valid facts about the Doctor of your choice via a clever description, then the creators of that movie qualify. And there you go, it's valid, it's in the lead, it's in the infobox. There are categories. Or slightly closer to the source material here. Imagine CJB decides to explore a chapter in the life of the Cosmic Dandy when he agreed with the Brigadier that blowing up things is a potential answer (he did shoot some Ogrons after all). So CJB publishes a whole series of books where the Cosmic Dandy hunts aliens across Earth. People did not like the Sixth Doctor strangling his companion, but that was done by BBC. CJB can do much worse. Unlike BF and Titan, they do not have to run their scripts by BBC for approval. They can take their Cosmic dudes anywhere they like. They are not answerable to anyone and have already showed that they are ready to bend some rules for a quick buck.
And that is another reason why we cannot create a precedent. Just because some readers currently like what current writers do with the properties they do not own under the current management, does not mean that other writers in the future working for new management will not take this production to lengths and depths that would make (most of) us weep.
We do not need to invent a bicycle. Our validity rules are based on a solid legal and moral ground. It has to be a narrative by the right-ful owner(s), we recognise the author's prerogative to release things the way they want without second-guessing them (or letting third parties share the spotlight), and we respect the author's/publisher's wishes if they want to stay out of DWU. We do not grant validity because we like somebody, or because they're struggling, or because they are in a difficult legal situation.
Let me remind you that this whole series of publications was born out of a dispute. This is not my claim: it is literally the first thing that Andy Frankham-Allen replies to the question about the genesis of the series: "Doctor Who has a long history of not crediting the character of Lethbridge-Stewart to his creators (indeed, they’ve only received on screen credit once in forty-seven years, not counting the script in which they introduced him), and it’s a well-documented bone of contention." He then goes on to count the number of times Great Intelligence was credited to its creators and comes out unhappy. [1] Leaving aside how reasonable this complaint is in the first place (I don't believe the creators of the Doctor are normally credited either), it is not the place of the wiki to take sides in this dispute. We should not be helping CJB get back at BBC any more than helping BBC to squash an inconvenient publisher.
BBC does not have the license to the Brigadier, CJB obtained this license. We do not take the side of BBC by ignoring CJB production. I don't even believe there was an inclusion debate. No barriers: welcome to the family.
By the same token, CJB do not have the license to the Doctor. We do not take their side by letting them play with the Doctor anyways.
The policies of the wiki must treat all rights holders equally. If someone likes an underdog, feel free to buy their books. But as an admin, I cannot take sides and I must respect the current legal position of all parties involved. Amorkuz 23:02, August 15, 2017 (UTC)
I have to say, the argument that the Wikia might be complicit in a copyright infringement case is pretty funny to me. Unless I'm grievously mistaken, copyright infringement is a civil wrong rather than a criminal wrong, which means there can be no "accomplices"; here is a specific list of criminal wrongs that could come from copyright infringement, and you can see that Wikia would be complicit in none of these claims by covering questionably copyrighted material. (If they were, an interlinked Lethbridge-Stewart Wiki would be just as bad!) As far as legal issues go, Wikia should be far more concerned about super-detailed plot summaries and high quality screenshots than anything having to do with T:VS. NateBumber 23:48, August 15, 2017 (UTC)
Thank you, NateBumber for doing research and reminding us that we do not live in a legal vacuum and there are simple and efficient tools against us at the disposal of copyright holders. They do not need a court order to have a deep impact on us here at Tardis. There is a simple procedure for removing our content described here. The matter will not be handled by the local admins:
Upon receipt of a valid takedown notice with all the required elements, Wikia, Inc. will remove the allegedly infringing content. The community where the content was deleted will be notified, via edit and/or deletion summaries (when available), why the content has been deleted.Ibid [[[2]|[src]]]
Note that Wikia, Inc. will not make an attempt to determine whether the content is indeed infringing. They will remove the allegedly infringing content and wash their hands. And, just in case you were wondering, copyright holders can even target particular users, due to the following policy:
If a particular user account uploads content that accrues three (3) separate DMCA takedown notices, Wikia, Inc. reserves the right to disable the account, at our discretion, under our repeat infringer policy.Ibid [[[3]|[src]]]
So far we've been respecting intellectual property of others and have been left to our own devices in return. Let's keep it that way. Amorkuz 23:25, August 17, 2017 (UTC)
That's a super interesting point; thank you for letting me know about that Wikia policy. Though I'm not quite sure why the BBC would file a takedown request at us for ... covering stories about the Cosmic Hobo on the same page as stories about the Doctor? That's outside the scope of the DMCA, as far as my lawyers tell me; or at least, if the Beebs tried that approach, it would be ... a precedent-setting case, to say the least. I mean, if Tardis made the decision that all fanfic is valid (which we obviously wouldn't want to do, but could), as long as we're not copy-pasting books or uploading whole comics, wouldn't we still be in the clear? If not, please let me know, cuz I'd rather the Faction Paradox Wiki not get nuked from orbit for saying the Master is the War King. NateBumber 00:36, August 18, 2017 (UTC)

Anyway, back to the topic at hand, I think it'd be pretty funny if we had pages that said things like, "According to one account, Victoria Waterfield wasn't present at this incident, and instead a woman named after a Queen was present." NateBumber 00:36, August 18, 2017 (UTC)

According to one account the Rutan scout that attacked the Fang Rock lighthouse in the 1900s was defeated by the Fourth Doctor. (TV: Horror of Fang Rock) Another account indicated that the Rutan was defeated by the time traveller with a time machine shaped like a police box that the British government knew by the codename "Cosmic Hobo" and that Alistair Gordon Lethbridge-Stewart encountered during the London Event. (PROSE: Beast of Fang Rock)
The Bellotron Incident [Track 13] - Bernice Summerfield and Bev Tarrant are in a bar contemplating their recent licensed encounter with Rutans
BT: ...And then I will tell you a tale of an escape filled with great daring, skill, and cunning. Hmm, the doc would have been proud of me.
BS: The doc? Oh my god, you don't know him?
BT: Know him? How do you think I got stranded in this godforsaken area of space and time?
BS: But how on Earth did you-
Ryan: Look, before you two ladies start catching up on old friends... what are you drinking?
[this is followed on by a joke relating to the events of the story and then the closing theme]
The point being: Lethbridge-Stewart is far from a stand-out case when it comes to the stories covered on this wiki. And as you said Amorkuz, "They should be treated as everyone else." I do not see any difference between Candy Jar alluding to characters they don't have the license to use in the story and Big Finish alluding to characters they don't have a license to use in the story.
And I'm not just talking about Bernice Summerfield. Let us not forget that The Kingmaker mentions a "Northern chap with big ears", a handful of BBC Eighth Doctor Adventures mention "Grace" (or in the case of Unnatural History, "Dr Holloway"), and loads of Virgin New Adventures use the word "Dalek".
I certainly think that the codename Cosmic Hobo deserves its own separate page, but there's an argument to be made that precedent allows for us to acknowledge that it's the Doctor. At the same time, this talk could set precedent. Do we want something like this:

Grace (disambiguation)

Because I sure don't want something like that. In my eyes, even if Grace Holloway is owned by Fox Broadcasting Company, having the Eighth Doctor (a character who appeared alongside Grace in a licensed story) mention someone named Grace who has characteristics that greatly correspond with Grace Holloway should be enough for the wiki to just link to Grace Holloway and not make a new page.
Lethbridge-Stewart's allusions are (in general) much more of an "EDAs referencing Grace" situation than a "The Kingmaker referencing the Ninth Doctor" situation. Aside from Legacies showing an alternate timeline in which the Doctor was among those killed in the London Event and that one now infamous two-page bonus short story with the >spoiler<; Lethbridge-Stewart hasn't been saying anything about the "Cosmic Hobo" that isn't also true of the Doctor in Doctor Who, just as the EDAs said very little about Grace which wasn't already in the TV movie. Now that I think about it, both are novel series primarily spun-off of one Doctor Who story which contained characters the publishers did not have a license to use.
Now, a whole lot of this discussion seems to be based off of an incredibly short bonus short story written in two days to be released as an extra alongside the regular "free" subscription short story: When Times Change. The fact is that just isn't representative of the series as a whole. The initial 2015 run of LS novels did try their damnedest to tie-in to all corners of televised Dr Who, but it didn't use the words "the Doctor" once. And the whole "let's prove we're in the DWU by having vague references to things we don't own" has really died down since 2015; as far as I'm aware since 2015 the only non-Lincoln/Haisman elements which originate from Doctor Who to appear in the series have been Adrienne Kramer, Karfel, and Grigoriy Bugayev (one of the main characters of Emotional Chemistry). With mostly new original aliens and an established cast of recurring characters, there really isn't really a "need" to reference "Cosmic Hobo" very much anymore. Even in cases where 2015 LS would have alluded to the Doctor, recent LS has refrained; segments of Times Squared are set directly after the events of The Abominable Snowmen and the novel has the restraint to not even have Travers recall "a dark-haired stranger with a large fur coat, a Scottish boy, and a girl named after a queen".
Not sure where to go next with this... I'll just end it with two things which aren't really relevant to the wider discussion.
  1. The idea that Candy Jar might publish a whole series about the "Cosmic Hobo" is about as sensical as the idea the BBC might give Candy Jar the license to use the Doctor and the TARDIS; they're too concerned about being consistent with televised Doctor Who and the Doctor is usually rather insistent on having people refer to him as "the Doctor".
  2. Surprisingly, the one part of this discussion that legit makes me angry has literally nothing to do with Lethbridge-Stewart. The Very Fabric of Time and Space is not an unlicensed Time Vortex and members of the Clockworks are not unlicensed Time Lords! Surely the fact that our articles for both of these things mention the concepts that they are supposedly knocking-off outside of the BTS should be considered some sort of sign. For the record, Mad Dogs and Englishmen has a character that says the Very Fabric isn't the Time Vortex and The Elixir of Doom has Iris saying that she is not a Time Lord, but instead a member of the Clockworks.
-CoT ? 05:35, August 18, 2017 (UTC)
I think CoT raised a very important distinction in how characters may appear in stories: some stories merely reference events from properly licensed stories without changing anything about those events or adding anything about those characters. Though in for-profit publishing using real names in such cases is still considered a violation of copyright, if I understand CoT correctly, he suggests that by a careful curation of material it would be ok to relax this rule as too cautious.
Whatever anyone thinks about the current implementation of copyright laws, they are based on a reasonable foundation: the creator should have creative control over his/her creations. The way I understand CoT's argument is that this fundamental right is not violated in the preceding references of Grace. As I said before we cannot advocate violating laws because they are inconvenient. But it can be argued that a simple reminder of snippets of a fully licensed story does not affect the author's rights in any way: nothing new is claimed about the characters and no profit is derived. This is a reasonable position I can sympathise with. This approach can be traced in how cultural references are treated in general. For instance, when Gabby Gonzalez asks not to compare her with a certain cartoon mice with the same name, the wiki currently mentions the actual cartoon character by name even though the story doesn't.
Of course, separating mere references to stories past from retconning those stories or hijacking those characters is harder than separating not using the name from using the name. This requires a lot of attention that has so far been lacking towards LS series here on Tardis, which is why we're having this conversation specifically on this story's page. Returning to NateBumber, I think his question happily provides a perfect litmus test, a way of telling if something new is said about the character. If one perceives a need to put some info about the character derived from his/her/its unlicensed appearance onto the original story's page and/or the character's page, that means the character was taken for a spin without permission. And in this case, morally and legally the connection to the original character should be disallowed. You can call it stealing, cheating, copyright violation. But it's wrong and I am strongly against condoning such behaviour. If, however, it is a mere reference to the original events, then there is nothing to be added about them on the original page. Then there is no "according to another account" because nothing is changed. And I can live with this being linked to the original character as in [[Second Doctor|Cosmic Hobo]]. Obviously, the page of the story should still use the name the character goes by in the story, but I guess it is ok to link if this is really a harmless reference.
Such a distinction is something I can get behind. But it is completely and utterly inapplicable to this story, which happens in an alternate timeline even from the in-universe perspective. It is a "what if" narrative. If the girl and Cosmic Hobo and the Scottish boy were killed here but not in the original story, why can't the girl be called Elizabeth as heavily implied in the story, why can't this be a completely different Cosmic Hobo who might have chosen a different monicker? There is zero reason to equate the characters in-universe or out-of-universe, just like we do not equate Ricky Smith with Mickey Smith, nor Unbound Universe characters with their normal DWU counterparts. And on the very few pages that may reference this story, it is very easy to do: "In an alternate timeline the Brigadier did this and a girl did this and the Cosmic Hobo did that, and all died. The end." Thus, I agree with CoT that Cosmic Hobo should get a page if only to record his fate from this story. And Girl from this timeline should get a page, and the Scottish one. Amorkuz 21:26, August 18, 2017 (UTC)
As an aside, I noticed that you've referred a few times to the "moral underpinnings" of copyright law, and I think a few terms might be getting confused. Moral rights are a subset of copyright law regarding attribution, but they're distinct from the idea of morals in the philosophy of ethics, which seems to be the sense in which you're using the word. Especially since the current topic is tangential to the hotly-debated context of intellectual property, I'd be a lot more comfortable if you refrained from making blanket statements about "right" and "wrong", or at least made it more clear that those statements are representative of your personal opinion rather than any objective fact. Thanks, NateBumber 17:31, August 23, 2017 (UTC)

Licensing: New Earth edition Edit

While we have been discussing the Doctor, the TARDIS, Victoria and Jamie and comparing this story to Toy Story, we seemingly have missed the elephant in the room. Fortunately, an eagled-eyed reviewer Nick Mellish for the Doctor Who Appreciation Society, caught the ingression and reported it in Cosmic Masque Issue 3 (December 2016).

The very ending, which explicitly mentions New Earth in a move which surely made the copyright department of BBC Wales raise an eyebrowCosmic Masque:3, Dec. 2016 [[src]]
For the record, New Earth was introduced in the namesake BBC television episode TV: New Earth, written by Russell T Davies. The name of the planet is used in Legacies without any disguise or copyright obviating description:
Five billion years in the future, in the year 5.5/Apple/26, Ezekiel Spens Lethebridge-Stuart will be the President of the National Trust, and his wife Dorcas Lethebridge-Stuart will be one of the founders of New Earth.Legacies [src]
Naturally, this fact has already been recorded on the page New Earth (New Earth). I tracked down the origins of this record to Revanvolatrelundar and, to be quite honest, I am more than a little surprised. In particular, I do not understand how that edit from December 2016 is compatible with the following statements:
The unique situtaion about the Lethbridge-Stewart series is that it has made the effort of obtaining the license to other characters and concepts from the Doctor Who universe in order to truly establish itself as taking place within the same universe.Revanvolatrelundar above
The next one is fine on the face of it in that it explicitly mentions the Doctor. But I still feel like crucial information was withheld from this discussion.
The references to the Doctor are all what they should be, merely references, and leave no room for doubt that they are meaning the Doctor, with very clever use of the English language to emphasise this without violating copyright law.

If you were to read the stories for yourself, you would certainly see the way these references are put across. In the past I have been skeptical about how the series can hold its own without a full license to Doctor Who, yet after reading them, their validity is very much there.Revanvolatrelundar above

I'm afraid reading the stories did not help me see how these references are "mere references". In this story, in particular, there is a direct mention by name of New Earth, an RTD-era DW concept. It is not a mere reference to a fact established by the right holders either: instead, it supplies a new origin story for New Earth. As mentioned in the DWAS review, this looks like a direct violation of the copyright law. It also violates the moral underpinnings of the law I mentioned above: that the concept of New Earth should remain under the control of its creators: BBC and/or RTD. Amorkuz 22:23, August 22, 2017 (UTC)


Twenty Questions
  1. Would you believe me if I said that I legitimately forgot that New Earth was mentioned by name?
  2. What makes Legacies giving new information about New Earth any different from The Quantum Archangel giving new information about Oa or Invasion of the Cat-People giving new information about the Kzinti?
  3. Is Legacies' mention of New Earth really that different than its allusion to Victoria, the Doctor, and Jamie?
  4. Surely the BBC cannot copyright a term so common in science fiction as "New Earth"?
  5. Is this story more or less egregious than that one time an entire novel was published which greatly expanded upon the origins of the Movellans with nary a "created by Terry Nation" in sight?
  6. Or is that one in the fine because it doesn't use the term "Movellan", but instead introduces a group that add braids to their androids and develop "a force of synthonic robots... that will contribute significantly to the Daleks' final demise"?
  7. But then how can the novel mention Daleks if it doesn't have any Terry Nation licensing?
  8. How can there be so many '90s and early '00s Doctor Who novels that mention Daleks but don't give credit to Terry Nation?
  9. If someone was of the opinion that the Lethbridge-Stewart series is a good example of "a complete and confusing mess if you remove the [unlicensed] elements from it", would they still think that after reading GodEngine?
  10. Why does Love and War mention Daleks at least 45 times, but Terry Nation not even once?
  11. Could it perhaps be because if a writer wanted to use Daleks they would have to give 1/3 of their fee to the Terry Nation Estate?
  12. Or perhaps the Terry Nation Estate was just too picky with what could and couldn't be done with Daleks?
  13. Would it be inaccurate to say that John Peel really hit the jackpot by being good friends with Nation?
  14. The same logic that dictates Legacies should be deleted also dictates that Love and War should be deleted, yes?
  15. And then what about stories such as Birthright, Father Time, and The Tomorrow Windows, which feature unnamed creatures that are described in a very Dalek-like manner?
  16. Shouldn't the rules be applied consistently regardless of who's publishing the story?
  17. Could this wiki really call itself a wiki for "everything in every media which has to do with DOCTOR WHO" if we didn't cover the myriad of Doctor Who stories which give new information about Daleks in passing but feature no Terry Nation licensing?
  18. Wouldn't New Earth (Legacies) be acceptable?
  19. "Another perspective, coming purely from a place of Devil's Advocacy: the authors intended New Earth (Legacies) to be New Earth (New Earth), and everyone who reads the story understands New Earth (Legacies) to be New Earth (New Earth). What good are we as a wiki if we refuse to acknowledge such a basic and obvious element of the story?"
  20. Was it completely fitting that Belinda was transformed into a giant squid, thrashing her newly granted tentacles as the captain of her ship stormed into the throne room on Valcea?
Sorry, I was in the mood for something different. Just throwing these things out there, really. Hopefully to encourage some sort of discussion. CoT ? 03:48, August 23, 2017 (UTC)

It took me quite some time to do research to answer CoT's questions (thank you for being clear which of them are rhetorical and which are not serious). My answers and thinking have evolved over these past few days based on the information I found in search for answers. In the end, it turned out that many of the questions have the same answer. But first, to question #1 my answer is yes. And question #9 I will leave for Revanvolatrelundar as it was his words originally.

  • UK copyright law does not require that a copyright notice be affixed to works exploiting copyrighted material (see here, p.3, item 2). This effectively means that the wiki does not in most cases have the means to curate whether all proper permissions have been obtained. We can observe the trademarked elements and those copyrighted elements whose authors negotiated a copyright notice for the publication under license. In most other cases, we can at best rely on publicly available information. An action as drastic as deletion from the wiki must, of course, be based on such information. So all the mentions of Grace, Oa, Kzinti, etc. and, yes, even Daleks, should be considered legal unless there is information regarding them suggesting otherwise. Regarding Daleks, one can be especially sure that everything is legal because Terry Nation estate is known for its aggressive enforcement of their rights. Given the lack of objections from them to all the above cases and given the statement of Nation Estate's representative Tim Hancock in 2004: "We wanted the same level of control over the Daleks that we have enjoyed for the last 40 years." [4], it is clear that no Dalek-related copyright infringement went undetected in 1964-2004.
  • UK copyright law also specifically disallows copyrighting names. So CoT is right that "New Earth" itself cannot be copyrighted. Neither can Victoria, or the Doctor. This applies, for instance, to Oa, which clearly cannot be the same as the DCU Oa. Note, however, that proper names and images can, however, be trademarked, wordmarked, etc. (Daleks and the TARDIS, for example, are trademarks of BBC).
  • So, no, New Earth is not copyrighted as a set phrase, but is likely copyrighted as a particular location in the DWU (see below).
  • What is different about Legacies? The situation is rather special because here we know from the publisher itself what they have a license and, more importantly, what they don't have a license for. They stated that they do not have a Doctor Who license and operate under the license from Haisman. Every time they received a license to additional elements of DWU, they posted the good news with the thanks to the licensor. It would really go beyond the realm of possible that CJB wouldn't boast of receiving a license from Russell T Davies or directly from BBC. Given their established policy of legal transparency, multiple statements of not having a Doctor Who license and lack of an announcement about receiving a license to use New Earth (as they did for the Vault), we can conclude that they did not have a permission to use it.
  • In a nutshell, we cannot use copyright notices to figure out the licensing situation, but we can use self-incriminating statements from the publisher itself (there is little reason for anyone to lie to put yourself in legal jeopardy).
  • Unfortunately, UK does not have an established subset of copyright law regarding copyright for fictional characters and locations. But even in the US, where it is established, there is a lot of vagueness. Not all characters/locations are copyrightable. I found a nice article summarising the main tests used in known court cases. There are two main tests for copyrightability: "distinctive delineation test" (used by a majority of courts) and the "constitutes the story being told". Different courts choose to use one or the other or their combination.
    1. "Distinctive delineation test". The first means that the character/location has to be sufficiently fleshed out in the original story, sufficiently distinctive from similar ones. In this case, just a planet to which people moved from Earth would not be copyrightable even if given a more properly proper name. But New Earth has appeared not in one but in two stories. A whole new race was born there. Cat-people live there and interbreed with humans. It suffered from Macra infestation. It's the place of death of the Face of Boe. Distinctive would be an understatement if anything.
    2. "Constitutes the story being told" is a tough test to pass and very subjective at that. It asks whether the character/location is so central to the story it appears in that he/she/it basically is the story itself. But in case of New Earth, it is very easy to satisfy the test. The story where New Earth appeared is called "New Earth". It is the titular location of the story. Of course, it is central to the story and is, in a very literal sense, the story itself.
  • The story "New Earth" contributes to the copyright/trademark protections in a way I did not originally anticipated. It makes the situation worse that there is merchandise sold by BBC under this name. In particular, on iTunes, one can buy an episode "New Earth".
  • So the main difference between this story and many others is, in fact, the usual reason used against fanfic: while we rarely can tell anything about the permissions to minor DC/Marvel/Star Trek/etc. properties, it is typically known whether a company holds a license to Doctor Who properties and which ones.
  • Speaking about fanfic, the wiki's T:NO FANFIC policy is the testament that "everything in every media which has to do with DOCTOR WHO" is not an accurate description of what this wiki is (where is it from, by the way?). T:VS provides further exceptions.
  • As for the difference between the New Earth and Victoria/Jamie/Doctor/TARDIS, they are indeed smaller than we believed at first. The name turns out not to be decisive. What matters is how much of a copyrightable character (who must be fleshed out well by definition of copyrightable) went into the derived work. In the case at hand, as you all agreed, the authors clearly intended it to be Victoria, not someone similar to Victoria but Victoria herself. We can recognise her by her screaming. Perhaps, Tessa is an even better example. How many police boxes covered in web stand on an underground platform and have "a trace of consciousness" inside? There are too many easily recognisable features of many unlicensed characters in this story. At the same time, the publisher explicitly and publicly stated in DWM 483 that they can use everything in Haisman's stories "minus the Doctor and companions".
  • Finally, your question 19 explains why we cannot cover this story. Upon reading up on copyright law, I now agree that simply omitting the name does not make it a different character. There were several copyright-related lawsuits where the name of the unlicensed character was different from but similar to the original. It does not give immunity. Here the name is not given (except for the New Earth) but the description is clear. Anyone who watched the Web of Fear immediately recognises Victoria, the web-covered TARDIS, Jamie and the Doctor. There is very little (if at all) that separates the nameless characters here from their originals in the Web of Fear. It is events that are changed not characters (except for Tessa of course).
  • Thus, upon researching to answer CoT's questions, I come to an even stronger conclusion that this story should be deleted as violating the licensing restrictions publicly stated by the publisher. Amorkuz 23:12, August 25, 2017 (UTC)
A note on this: I see no reason why this article should apply to New Earth in any way. The article is entirelty about characters, and the justifications given for why characters are copyrightable (including "The experience of reading about a character may deliver many of the same sensations and emotions as a social interaction with her in a reader's real life would do" and "Readers can know a character even more profoundly than they can know a human being"), as well as the long discussions of the distinctions between flat and round or static and dynamic, simply do not apply to locations like New Earth. Furthermore, this is only relevant to US law, which, since CJB and the BBC are both companies registered in the UK, is a non sequitur to the discussion at hand.
... but even if it was UK law, and if New Earth was a copyrightable character rather than a location, I still don't think it would make this scenario a copyright violation. The article says that character copyright is relevant in cases of "creative reuse", and two main hypothetical examples it gives are (1) a writer creating a sequel to an existing work by adopting its main characters and putting them in a new scenario, and (2) Ahab's Wife: Or, The Star-gazer as a violation of Moby Dick - specifically not because of the many unambiguous references to Ahab throughout the book (and in the title!), but because the main character was owned by Melville. This just confirms my statement -- and I'll say it again -- that if New Earth was the setting of the story, or the setting for part of the story, or played any specific and direct role in the plot of the story, I would agree with you that this is violation. But it didn't, so I continue to disagree.
That said, I love being proven wrong! I'd really welcome some UK legal precedent about replaceable one-line references to other works violating copyright. So far, I haven't found any, or much of anything regarding character copyright in the UK as a whole, really. Gov.uk doesn't list "referencing a proper noun original to your story" as a way that copyright protects someone's work. The UK Copyright Service explicitly says that names can't be copyrighted, though if it comes with an artistic or design element then a logo can be copyrighted. You can trademark a cartoon character, but that doesn't say anything about locations. The BBC itself only talks about full works in its page on copyright, and it says you can enforce your copyrights by filing for an injunction "if someone copies the whole or a substantial part of your work", which I think we can agree isn't the case here. Unless I'm missing something huge, there's no law or precedent in the UK (or the US, for that matter) that would allow someone to sue someone else (and win) because of a one-line reference to a character or location.
Just as you pointed out regarding Daleks in the VNAs, absence of evidence for something violating copyright is evidence of absence of that thing violating copyright. And that leads me to believe that (unlike Time's Champion or A Target for Tommy, which are both straightforward applications of Rule 2 in the way it was originally intended) Legacies doesn't break the four little rules in any way. – N8 18:22, September 1, 2017 (UTC)

Licensing: general edition Edit

First things first, “everything in every media which has to do with DOCTOR WHO" is something taken from the little blurb that pops up when you search for Tardis Wiki on Google. The sentence in full is “We cover everything in every media that has to do with DOCTOR WHO, TORCHWOOD, THE SARAH JANE ADVENTURES and K9 — the whole DOCTOR WHO universe”. A bit biased towards TV (I mean - K9, really?), but what can you do? I really doubt that the average reader would interpret that literally and expect us to cover run-of-the-mill fanfiction.

In the early 2000s, when The Quantum Archangel was made, the rights to publish material relating to concepts copyright DC Comics lay with Bantam Books and and Warner Books, two American companies which had absolutely no connection to BBC Books. To suggest without evidence that the BBC would obtain the rights to publish stories involving DC Comics planets just so Craig Hinton (remember that name, it’ll come into play again) could name one planet once in a Dr Who novel… it seems a tad far-fetched. That’s because it is. Everyone and their auntie can include a line where a character says “I went to Solos this one time” in their novel. Anyone can have the Doctor cameo in their novel! Just as long as your story isn’t actually about the Doctor or that one time a character visited Solos. Just as long as you don't give too much detail.

De minimis non curat lex. The law does not concern itself with trifles. For example, it would be a waste of legal resources for the BBC (and Bob Baker & Dave Martin) to sue Virgin for briefly including unnamed characters clearly recognisable as the Fourth Doctor, Romana II, and K9 in a novel which did not have the license to use them.

Now, as mentioned near the top of this page, we already have established precedent for situations like Legacies. If this story should be deleted, then it follows that the same fate should befall Adventures in a Pocket Universe. In an interview dug up for Downtime – The Lost Years of Doctor Who, John Ainsworth - who was involved in the creation of the stories - described the stories featuring the mistress to be “the obviously Doctor Who thing of K9 and Romana and their adventures in E-Space after the Doctor left them at the end of Warriors’ Gate”. K9’s mistress was so obviously intended to be Romana that they even got Lalla Ward to return from her seven-year acting retirement! However, Mr Bill Baggs made it crystal clear that BBV didn’t have the rights to use Romana.

This goes far beyond just Adventures. Deleting Legacies would set a precedent which could invalidate every other story on this wiki which even briefly features cameos from characters the publishers had not the rights to use. For a small sample:

  • Hass from the Bernice Summerfield series.
In Bernice’s time Yesod is still inhabited by sentient gaseous plasmids, one of whom, Hass, has been a semi-regular character in Benny’s stories. His origins were established in Something Changed, where the then range editor Simon Guerrier changed the multiverse using a patented causality-altering device to eliminate, among other things, the copyright issues caused by Hass’s previous identity as one of Doctor Who’s Martians Ice Warriors. (I considered complaining that the use of Yesod violated my copyright, and threatening to sue Simon just so I could watch his face. But that would have been mean.)Philip Purser-Hallard[5]
Several days ago, I ordered myself a used copy of Bernice Summerfield: The Inside Story. It’ll arrive on or before 15 October. After I make a page for it (7 years after its release date), I’ll thoroughly search through the section detailing the making of A Life Worth Living. If I were to find a statement indicating that they introduced a recurring character who was an Ice Warrior in all but name and that they didn’t have a license to use Ice Warriors, does that mean we delete all of our pages pertaining to a certain portion of Bernice Summerfield?
  • The copyright situation with Virgin Books and the Daleks isn’t as simple as you make it seem. For instance, in an interview about GodEngine, Craig Hinton specifically said that the New Adventures didn’t have the rights to the Daleks, and that his sneaky use of them in GodEngine angered representatives of the Nation Estate. There is, furthermore, zero indication that a story like COMIC: Party Animals had the permission to hide two love-stricken Daleks in the background - something which really quite goes against the Dalek brand.

But is the Legacies’ violation even as blatant a violation as these? I do not believe that any of us doubt that the BBC do own the planet New Earth as seen in at least 5 BBC licensed stories. Or that Candy Jar Books do not have the license to New Earth. The thing is: none of the aspects of New Earth that distinctively delineate it are present in ‘’Legacies’’. It’s just a short mention in one sentence. Nothing about the cat-nurses. Nothing about traffic issues or dying heads. Nothing about the planet’s history of invasions by Vespiforms, Macra, Zygons, Daleks, Clockwork Droids, Sontarans, Judoon, or Ood. (And before you say “apple dating system”, as far as I can tell that’s not actually been directly correlated with New Earth in a Doctor Who story.) It’s like Amorkuz has already said, the BBC don’t own the phrase "New Earth". And "New Earth” is all this story gives that can be seen as a reference to New Earth, Gridlock, or any other story that New Earth appears in.

Side note: I’d swear Agent Provocateur indicated that the Catkind did not originate from New Earth.

The BBC own the copyright to the Police Box design, but they do not own the word “police box”. Never once does Legacies describe the police box form of Tessa beyond the detail of it being a police box. In fact, the short story is rather lacking in descriptions of the characters that it cannot fully use. Facts that can be said about the Jamie stand-in: 1) he is scottish 2) he is the boyfriend of the Victoria stand-in 3) he is an associate of “the thief”. Facts that can be said about the Victoria stand-in: 1) she can scream 2) she is an associate of “the thief” 3) she is the Jamie stand-in’s girlfriend 4) she shares a name with a queen 5) she is killed by a yeti. Facts about “the thief”: 1) he was killed because he was a thief 2) he is associated with the unnamed Jamie stand-in and the unnamed Victoria stand-in.

The Second Doctor being referred to as “the thief” is not something that originates from things copyright BBC, but instead from things copyright Lincoln/Haisman. Part one of The Web of Fear has their characters under the impression that the Doctor, Jamie, and Victoria are civilians who have came to the underground for illegal reasons. Purely hypothetical here, but if Big Finish were to publish a non-BBC-licensed short story anthology all about Bernice Summerfield in the Unbound Universe and it gave new information about the Unbound Doctor by simply referring to him as the “ruler of the universe” - a role he filled in BBC licensed stories - wouldn’t we allow it?

But the thief and the scottish boy, they do not actually appear in Legacies. They’re just mentioned in a couple sentences.

And the girl, she’s present for about 3 pages out of 30. The only contribution she actually makes to the story in this time is to stand there while the soldiers do stuff. The 5 facts listed above are basically all that can be gleaned of her. She runs in screaming, is occasionally mentioned as being present for a while, and is then torn apart by a yeti. To say that that is enough to infringe upon the rights of the BBC … I flat out disagree. Flat being the key word. The girl is a cardboard cut-out background character who doesn’t even speak and is only able to scream and die. I’d hope that isn’t how you view Victoria.

Finally, while the character Tessa is certainly meant to be the TARDIS, she is still very much an original character. The BBC have yet to publish stories in which the TARDIS can alter its natural form to become a human-looking blonde woman in a blue dress. In the BBC’s stories, the most the TARDIS can do in times of danger is ring the cloister bell and use the HADS to scarper off to safety. Legacies doesn’t even indicate how people travel through time with Tessa - no “large interior dimensions” or hexagonal control consoles in sight. The contents of the story could even be interpreted to suggest that people do not go inside Tessa; she is shown to have the ability to manipulate time around her. If Norma Ashley was looking to have Tessa as a simple TARDIS stand-in, she did a pretty rum job; Web of Fear could have gone by much quicker if the TARDIS could transform into a person and free anyone of the influence of the Intelligence. The story does have a bit where there’s a rising and falling wheezing sound, but it’s not directly associated with Tessa, instead just with the timelines shifting back into their proper places. I would posit that Tessa - by far the most prominent aspect of Legacies to be based off an element of Web of Fear Candy Jar books don’t have a license to - is unique enough that she is a copyrightable character in her own right. You know, like The Mistress (The Choice).

But. To get down to the meat and potatoes. What right do we have to mark this out as illegal? As you yourself have noted, Amorkuz, there is an awful lot of vagueness in fictional character copyright law. Until a judge declares that Legacies is a violation of copyright, who are we to say that it is? The BBC never took Bill Baggs to court over Adventures in a Pocket Universe, so who are we to make a statement over its legality? Can five people on a fandom wikia talk page consider all of the variables that would be considered in the court of law?

If this short story is so heinous, then why don't we just wait until Candy Jar Books are forced to remove it from their shelves following a BBC lawsuit. CoT ? 03:03, August 29, 2017 (UTC)

I would greatly appreciate links added for the interviews and other new information provided here, same way I provided links to statements from Hancock and to particular facets of copyright law. It's not because I don't believe the quotes. But context matters and I need to be able to see it to fully appreciate the arguments. Amorkuz 07:07, August 29, 2017 (UTC)
Here is just one small example of why I would like to see the original sources: in many cases you did provide links (thank you). So regarding BF losing license to publish DW books, the link is to a short story collection page that says: "the BBC not renewing the licence for them to publish original short prose fiction". On the face of it, this has no effect on a novel about Erimem. It may be a subtle legal situation, and I would like to understand it fully before taking any action. Amorkuz 07:27, August 29, 2017 (UTC)

Concealing information will get you nowhere Edit

I am sorry to be blunt. But it is the second time when the effort to defend this short story descends into falsehoods/concealing pertinent information.

none of the aspects of New Earth that distinctively delineate it are present in ‘’Legacies’’{{{2}}}
is a false statement. Period. New Earth from this story is identified as New Earth from the TV series beyond any doubt. The story states that New Earth will be founded "[f]ive billion years in the future", and RTD's New Earth was founded in year five billion:
Tenth Doctor: So, the year five billion, the sun expands, the Earth gets roasted.

Rose: That was our first date.

The Doctor: We had chips. So anyway, planet gone, all rocks and dust, but the human race lives on, spread out across the stars. Soon as the Earth burns up, oh yeah, they get all nostalgic, big revival movement, but then find this place. Same size as the Earth, same air, same orbit. Lovely. Call goes out, the humans move in. TV: New Earth

Now year "five billion" would be enough by itself as a "distinctive delineation". Note also that the dialogue ties it directly to TV: The End of the World. But in case anyone still doubted that this is the right "year five billion", CJB provides a description that directly ties this New Earth with the destruction of Earth in The End of the World: these particular five billion years in the future is "the year 5.5/Apple/26" in the "apple dating system". Of course, the "apple dating system" by itself provides an incontrovertible link to the BBC Wales series. But it gets better than that. Do you know which episode it was first used? Yes, you guessed it: The End of the World.
Ninth Doctor: This is the year 5.5/Apple/26. Five billion years in your future, and this is the day... Hold on. This is the day the Sun expands. Welcome to the end of the world.TV: The End of the World
The CJB story directly references the exact year the Earth was destroyed in the unique format of the BBC Wales series as the year New Earth was founded. Which, as we know from BBC, happened because old Earth was destroyed.

I'm sorry but at this point I am forced to rescind my previous request for more information regarding other stories. If I cannot rely on information provided regarding this story being truthful and complete, I am forced to call this discussion to order.

  • If someone has suggestions regarding other stories whose coverage should be modified/terminated, please address your concerns on the talk pages of those other stories. Please provide complete quotes and publicly available information about the copyright situation. There.
  • If someone believes that policies of this wiki should be modified, please start a discussion at Panopticon.

Once again I cite the current policy relevant in this case: A story that isn't commercially licensed by all of the relevant copyright holders doesn't count. (Validity policy, Rule 2) Thus, the only relevant comments on this talk page shall be explanations why the transparent references to copyrighted and/or trademarked characters of Victoria, Jamie, the Doctor and the TARDIS in this story are legal and why the direct use of the copyrighted element New Earth is legal. The fact that it was published does not make it legal while "somewhat seemingly similar" situations with other stories are irrelevant. Even if the same policy is violated on other pages, it does not justify the violation of the policy on this page. It is a truism that I'm sure is familiar to all participants of this discussion that the admins are unpaid volunteers and cannot guarantee that all policies are 100% followed 100% of the time. Please stick to the case at hand. Enforcing policies on the books does not create a precedent. If anything, it corrects a precedent of incorrect coverage, which would not be the first time for this publisher.

As NateBumber eloquently put it above, please do not cite your opinion in support of the story. What is needed is a legal analysis by the UK governmental body or a copyright lawyer/scholar and/or court ruling on a similar case of copyright infringement. In particular, I like Latin as much as the other guy, but what would persuade me is the same Latin phrase used by a judge in a court ruling.

I am always happy to accept arguments based on facts, no matter how contrary to my position they are. But let me assure you again that disregarding facts is not a strategy that is likely to succeed (not at this wiki, at least). Everyone is free to argue that some facts may not be important, as CoT did regarding the "apple dating system" (apparently he was unaware that not just the system but the exact year was copied verbatim from BBC). But to claim that no distinctly delineating feature connects the two New Earths after "five billion years" were already mentioned in the discussion is not a good-faith argument. Amorkuz 11:48, August 29, 2017 (UTC)

Apologies for making a mistake. I didn't have the wording of Legacies burned into my mind. I didn't feel the need to reexamine the one line because I already thought I knew everything that was there. The fact does remain that the only uses of the word "apple" in stories to feature New Earth are in the context of its apple-grass.
But I take offence at this complete mischaracterization of me as someone who would deliberately hide facts to keep this one short story from being deleted. Talk pages don't need to be this charged. Not to play the bias blame game, but Amorkuz, you were talking about weeping over a potential Candy Jar book series earlier in this discussion.
Quite frankly, I do think other stories covered on is wiki matter because what we're talking about is copyright. If other stories have gotten away with worse, surely that indicates something? If the interpretation of the policies that leads to this story being deleted would also lead to some Virgin New Adventures being deleted there may well be a bit of an issue. And I'm not going to be putting delete tags on any of the stories mentioned here, because that would be a violation of T:POINT.
I don't have the time to write much more now, but later today I'll fulfill Amorkuz' requests from before the last post. My above analysis of the stories' use of the Scottish boy, the girl with the name of a queen, the thief, and Tessa comes from a thorough reading of the parts of the short story involving them. Talk to you soon. CoT ? 12:50, August 29, 2017 (UTC)
Apology accepted and appreciated. I apologise if I was too direct in my criticism. But it is hard to form a workable theory when the quote is posted above on the same page, and a simple click verifies that 5'000'000'000 is the year New Earth was founded. The first time crucial information, the use of New Earth, was withheld from this discussion, I did not direct my criticism at you, but you applied it to yourself anyway. So I had the expectation, perhaps unreasonable, that you will make an effort and be extra careful not repeat such a mistake. And thing is: you were worried about the time issue. So it just did not make sense that you would worry about a more far-fetched time description without checking the more immediate one. (It did not help that the link to other known features of New Earth pointed at an invalid game.) I never thought of you as "someone who would deliberately hide facts to keep this one short story from being deleted". But I also never thought of you as less than thorough in your research either.
Incidentally, since "apple" appeared before New Earth in The End of the World, no apple connection is to be expected. Also the race of people born on New Earth are the new humans.
But continuing with spot-checking the links. You say: Craig Hinton specifically said that the New Adventures didn’t have the rights to the Daleks, and that his sneaky use of them in GodEngine angered representatives of the Nation Estate. But when one follows the link (courteously provided), one sees:

Question: Is there a single moment in the book that you're stupidly proud of?

Craig Hinton: Not exactly a single moment, but I loved not using the Daleks throughout the book. By creating a well-defined, Dalek-shaped hole, I was able to beef up their presence without incurring the wrath of Terry Nation! Although I did hear that John Peel, the avatar of Nation on Earth, did get a little ruffled! [[[6]|[src]]]

So I read from this quote: without incurring the wrath of Terry Nation. The one person unhappy about it was, according to the quote, John Peel. You previously stated that Peel was lucky to be Nation's friend. That statement sounds right as it allowed Peel to write stories about Daleks. Are you now saying that Peel was an official representative of the Nation Estate? Amorkuz 23:46, August 29, 2017 (UTC)


Woah, there's been a lot of great discussion here! I was almost scared off by the little +22,617 :)

There are some great rhetorical arguments going back and forth, and I'm pretty happy to stand mostly on the sidelines. But I think there's one little spot of confusion here: Amorkuz, when you said "If someone has suggestions regarding other stories whose coverage should be modified/terminated ..." I think you may have been accidentally misinterpreting what CoT was arguing.

From what I understand, CoT wasn't saying, "While you're at it, could you delete these pages as well?" They were saying, "There's precedent for how we cover stories that reference elements without a license, which has been used time and time and time again." This isn't an argument against Rule 2; Rule 2 is completely sensible, and it's vital to the proper functioning of this wiki! As CoT said, no one would expect this wiki to cover literal fanfic. It's absolutely undebatable that we shouldn't cover a story that isn't commercially licensed by all of the relevant copyright holders.

But that word relevant makes all the difference. DC isn't relevant to the validity of The Quantum Archangel just because it references Oa and the Green Lanterns, and Marvel isn't relevant just because there are throwaway references to Pym particles and the Shi'ar. Similarly, FOX and Universal Studios aren't relevant to The Blue Angel, The Bodysnatchers, Genocide, or Unnatural History just because those stories feature ultra-brief named references to Grace Holloway. And therefore, it holds that the BBC isn't relevant to Legacies just because of a throwaway reference to New Earth.

Of course, Amorkuz, you're absolutely right that New Earth is denileated by the five billion year date in Legacies, just as Oa was delineated by magical green energy in The Quantum Archangel. And indeed, if Legacies was set on New Earth, or if it had tangibly involved New Earth in any other way, I think it would be a completely different situation! But instead, like the Oa reference in The Quantum Archangel, this is a blink-and-you'll-miss-it quip that has zero bearing on the plot.

All that aside, I agree with you entirely that what would persuade me is the phrase being used by a judge in a court ruling: the phrase "De minimis non curat lex", or the phrase "copyright infringement". Amorkuz, you've presented the argument for the latter to be true; CoT, you've equally presented evidence for the former. I've chatted about it with a few legal students studying intellectual property who came to the same conclusion as CoT here, and I'm sure we could find someone else who argues that the throwaway reference constitutes copyright infringement. But in the end, all these opinions don't really matter if the courts never decide.

And it really seems as if we might never get that decision. As Amorkuz just pointed out, sure, GodEngine and plenty of other VNAs probably violated the copyright of the Daleks ... but it doesn't really matter, because the Nation Estate didn't have a problem with it! The only person unhappy was a friend of Nation's, but his opinion doesn't really matter, because as we all know, John Peel is a really friendly guy, but he's not a judge! Exactly analogously, the BBC apparently doesn't have a problem with CJB referencing "New Earth", and until they do, I think it'd be fair to say that TARDIS Wiki users' opinions (mine included!) are just as irrelevant as Peel's ;) NateBumber 03:11, August 30, 2017 (UTC)

Oa, Your Friendly Non-copyright-infringing Planet, or Not All That's Emerald Is a Green Lantern Edit

As I said before, I've decided not to track down all the gazillion of tangential mentions of other properties that can be found in the DWU. The primary reason is that I do not treat all publishers as serial copyright-evaders who never obtain license for things they use. I am yet to see a single proof of another publisher violating copyright laws. Just to remind, the publisher obtaining a license is not detectable from the publication because the copyright notice is not mandated by the UK copyright law. I would, in fact, appreciate if other editors showed some respect for the legal departments who do a difficult and thankless job of settling the formalities so that we can enjoy their stories unperturbed.

I will, however, single out one case, which I have already researched anyways. Let me deconstruct one quote and show you how the situation was misrepresented (I am beginning to wonder if it is possible to defend Legacies without the use of "alternative facts")

Of course, Amorkuz, you're absolutely right that New Earth is denileated by the five billion year date in Legacies, just as Oa was delineated by magical green energy in The Quantum Archangel. And indeed, if Legacies was set on New Earth, or if it had tangibly involved New Earth in any other way, I think it would be a completely different situation! But instead, like the Oa reference in The Quantum Archangel, this is a blink-and-you'll-miss-it quip that has zero bearing on the plot.NateBumber above
First off, for Oa to be copyrightable, it should be delineated in the DCU, not in The Quantum Archangel. And it sure is. The question is how much of this delineation was copied in The Quantum Archangel. And the answer is: none. Here is the only paragraph that mentions Oa:
The Doctor couldn’t resist proving her wrong. ‘The universe reached the point of heat death about twenty years ago, with an emerald wave of entropy sweeping across the universe.’ An emerald wave that had destroyed so much: Metulla Orionis, Oa, one-third of the Shi-ar empire... So much tragedy.The Quantum Archangel
So let's see:

  • Green Lanterns are not mentioned.
  • In fact, green colour is not mentioned: emerald is, not the same thing.
  • The green-hued energy destroys Oa in the DWU, as opposed to originating from it in the DCU.
  • In the DWU, the wave is not magical, as stated in the quote above, it's entropy related. Is there entropy in the DCU around Oa? Yes, there is. And it's a bloke who calls himself Entropy and who did not destroy Oa in the DCU (in case you were wondering).
  • Finally, in the DWU, Oa is destroyed in 1981, whereas in the DCU it still exists in the 31st century.

The relationship between two Oa's is about the same as between Toledo, Spain and Toledo, Ohio. One is clearly inspired by the other, but they have nothing in common. Since names are not copyrightable, there is absolutely no copyright infringement here. This is the exemplary case of responsible writing and respectful homage to other fictional universes. So please stop brandishing it as a case of an unlicensed appearance. It is anything but. (On top of which, once again, we do not know whether the publisher obtained permission to use it anyways.) Amorkuz 14:16, August 30, 2017 (UTC)

Sure, the colour green isn't mentioned ... except in practically the very next line! I'll freely admit that perhaps I misread the next paragraph, where the Master describes an alternate universe where matter and energy are infected with an entropy virus ("its waste products are emerald green, for your information"); if that's the case, then I apologize for the mistake. But I have to note that this is the second time I've noticed you jump onto an accidental error as some dastardly attempt to intentionally conceal relevant information or spread false "alternate facts". I won't call it bad faith, but it's close, and I'd really rather that you treat me (and anyone else in this discussion, for that matter) as a collaborator rather than some opponent.
So sure, Oa was a bad example. Let's look at a marginally better one. Universal has infamously played close to its chest with the rights to Grace, denying her to Big Finish (despite Daphne Ashbrook being perfectly willing to appear in audio) as well as BBC Books (who tried to use her for Vampire Science but couldn't work it out). This apparently didn't stop her from being referenced by name twice in the two novels directly after Vampire Science, as well as The Blue Angel and Unnatural History:
His plan, after his bittersweet parting from Grace - the woman at whom his perhaps misplaced attentions had been directed - had been to travel alone for a while, to contemplate, take stock, rediscover the silent, still point within himself.The Bodysnatchers
He broke off, looking down at his shoes, which had almost disappeared into the grey, sucking mud. ‘Oh no! Grace gave me those!’Genocide
‘But I’m not leaving yet: I’ve got one more important thing to take care of.’ Joyce raised an eyebrow at him. ‘You mean Dr Holloway, don’t you?’ ‘Ah, no. Actually I called on her the other night.’ Joyce waited. ‘Well?’ ‘Please.’ The Doctor gave Joyce a somewhat miffed look, and fussed with the lapels of his jacket. ‘I’m sure you of all people appreciate the value of discretion.’Unnatural History
I remember being in San Francisco and it was New Year. I kissed a woman in a park. She was dressed in some satiny stuff and the trees were strung with fairy lights. ... I kissed her because she'd given me back part of my memory. She had restored it to me with just an inadvertent word. ... Grace, Grace, Grace, she was called.The Blue Angel
Grace is certainly a copyrightable and copyrighted character, as evidenced the fact that both BBC Books and Big Finish wanted to use her but couldn't. And yet, these four stories (and there are probably more!) use her name and, just as Legacies delineates New Earth with the five million year label, each novel clearly delineates Grace: as the person the Eighth Doctor gave his "misplaced attentions" before traveling alone; as the person who gave him his shoes; as the person he kissed on New Year's in a park in San Francisco; as the doctor in San Francisco with whom the Eighth Doctor is potentially romantically involved.
Again, I'm not saying this because I think those four novels broke copyright. If Grace had actually played a role in any of these stories, that would be illegal, hence the situation with Vampire Science. But these references are just that - references - so it's not an issue. And I'll bet that's the reason it's so difficult to find legal precedent for cases like these: it's because no one has ever cared enough to sue about a minor reference. I'd be very happy to be proven wrong!
As for my lack of respect for hard-working legal departments, I'm just trying to hold them to the same standards that you're applying to CJB. If I've been understanding you correctly, you're assuming that Virgin worked out the rights to Oa or that BBC worked out the rights to Grace just because there's not enough evidence that they didn't ... at the same time that you're accusing CJB of copyright violation because there's not enough evidence that they did. In effect, you're saying that every story on the wiki is "innocent until proven guilty", whereas this one is "guilty until proven innocent". That seems to me like a double standard and potentially a violation of T:NPOV. I'm not saying you're biased against CJB, but we can both agree that the recent <removed by admin per [[T:SPOIL]]> story has undoubtedly left a bad taste in many mouths. For what it's worth, I have no particular love for CJB or the Lethbridge-Stewart range. But by "taking a side" in this discussion, since I suppose I've taken a side by now, I want you to know that I'm just trying to make sure that we apply the same standards to every publisher on the wiki. NateBumber 03:25, September 1, 2017 (UTC)
Yeah, I meant to reply regarding the role of New Earth but was distracted by other threads of the conversation. Thanks for reminding. I think, Nate, you and I indeed have a significant disagreement regarding what should be considered crucial for the plot. I completely agree that New Earth here could have been replaced by something else. But it cannot be dropped completely. There must be something in this place to persuade Pemberton. Thus, it plays a role for the plot. It is not a throwaway reference because it cannot be thrown away, only replaced. In fact, there is a special type of plot device (invented by Hitchcock), called MacGuffin, that is defined as "some goal, desired object, or other motivator that the protagonist pursues, often with little or no narrative explanation". A good example of MacGuffin is the suitcase in Pulp Fiction: we never learn what is inside and why everyone is ready to kill for it. In other words, a plot device need not make some special narrative sense. It is purely the choice of the author what makes a difference to the character's actions and what doesn't. In the story, Tessa takes a long time to persuade Pemberton to sacrifice his life. It could have been made much simpler: Pemberton is a career soldier and is happy to die in the Brigadier's stead. It could have been done, but the author chose to follow a different path. We cannot say that this hesitation is not important for the plot because we could have written it differently. It is important precisely because the author chose to make it important. Similarly, the author chose to make New Earth and the fact that it was founded by the joint descendants the final decisive argument. Hence, it is important for he plot, paramount in fact.
If you think references to Grace cannot be simply deleted, let me know and I will look more carefully. But the other references I checked can absolutely be just omitted. Oa is just one of the planets destroyed: drop it from the list and nothing changes. Kzinti is just a suggestion that is never confirmed, hence, cannot play any role. In my research, I did find a case where a reference was used in a plot-relevant way: in Doctormania, Rose Tyler pretends to be a journalist Lois Lane from either Daily Bugle or Daily Planet (she gives both versions at different times, and the second newspaper is correct as far as "real" Lois is concerned). Here Rose uses her knowledge of the comics rather than the comic characters themselves. That's a textbook cultural reference. There is no confusion as to Lois Lane being present in the DWU other than a fictional character. So that's another kettle of fish.
I'd really love to see some legal documents clarifying this. But roughly I would distinguish the following cases (this list may not be complete):
  • referencing elements of other creative works as fictional elements (Rose uses a name of a comic-book journalist to pretend to be a journalist, or Torchwood team discussing the famous scene from the Alien movie);
  • referencing names from other creative works in recognisable but incompatible ways (green-themed planet Oa, but the details do not match);
  • referencing elements of other creative works in compatible but non-conclusive ways (hinting at Dr Strange and Constantine but not giving enough details to be sure; potentially, the northern chap in the Kingmaker is in the same category; I can't judge but the Dalek-shaped hole seems to be down this alley, as well as supposed Movellan precursors); the more I think of this, the more it seems that we often make a leap of faith in covering such references: we shouldn't be as sure as we sometimes are; exactly here Nate's questions should be asked: can this description apply to something else?
  • referencing particular episodes from other creative works (most Grace references seem to fall into this category; this is the in-universe variant of the first category);
  • referencing particular elements from other creative works and modifying them (New Earth is supplied with new information regarding its founders).
I can easily believe that the first three types are harmless. It's the last two types that I'd dearly love to find the legal language on. Amorkuz 23:14, September 11, 2017 (UTC)

This doesn't have anything to do with Oa, so I'll just give it a new section Edit

This business has gotten me all hot and bothered (a phrase which here means "exasperated", "peeved", and "teed off") and I'd much rather spend my time on this wiki making pages for new interesting things. So please don't expect me to respond to anything on this page for the next while. Amorkuz, your apology is noted. Believe it or not I'm not gonna reread a talk page this long every time I add something to it. I'm an unpaid volunteer who's here to get some enjoyment out of documenting stories related to Doctor Who, and discussions which escalate to be as heated as this one got are just not my cup of tea.

In regard to "I am yet to see a single proof of another publisher violating copyright laws." That's just the thing, what I've been trying to get at is that a story having continuity with something the publisher does not have the license to use is not necessarily illegal. That Virgin could not publish a novel about the Fourth Doctor, Romana, and K9 at the time they published Beige Planet Mars - that is a basic fact. As is that BBV could not actually use Romana in Adventures in a Pocket Universe. Amorkuz, at the very start of this talk page you yourself cited The Mistress (The Choice) as a knock-off character. As for Big Finish's The Coming of the Queen, it's absolutely correct to say Short Trips have nothing to do with it; Big Finish have only ever had the license to publish Dr Who short fiction (short fiction which they can no longer sell), meaning that a novel (which you can buy from their website at this very moment) with characters identifiable as the Fifth Doctor and Peri was never on the table.

And asking us to assume that everything in the stories we cover has been obtained from all the appropriate copyright holders unless there is evidence to directly indicate otherwise? Changing the opening paragraph of Assimilation² (comic story) to read "This story is the third officially licensed crossover between Doctor Who and Star Trek, after Spock's appearance in PROSE: A Slow Night in Paradise and the appearance of a Ferengi in COMIC: Party Animals ", that would be what I call alternative facts. Just because I can't find an incident where the BBC has said, "We don't have the license to publish original Marvel Superhero, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and Star Trek stories", doesn't mean that they did have those licenses.

The fact that something is commercially for sale doesn't mean rights and clearances have been done.User:CzechOut [src]

The lack of any evidence for something as notable as Virgin making a deal with Marvel and DC Comics to briefly use Doctor Strange and John Constantine in Millennial Rites ([7] Search for "old brownstone in New York") indicates something. If such an arrangement were to have actually happened one would think that it would be included as a "fun fact" or something in reference books such as I, Who.

Some of our listed cultural references to the Doctor Who universe reference Doctor Who in manner which indicates that they take place in the same fictional universe. Could the BBC sue those comics and TV shows which have short appearances by the TARDIS?

Camera Obscura featured a character named William who was quite evidently heavily based off of William Pratt AKA "Spike" from Buffy the Vampire Slayer. William prominently features in Chapter 2 and - as evidenced by his page on this wiki - is fleshed out a considerable bit more than the unlicensed characters in Legacies.

But anyway, the one thing we can all agree on is that copyright law is at least a bit vague. Something in UK copyright law allowed Kim Newman to get away with briefly using and/or referencing a whole lot of copyrighted concepts in novels such as Dracula Cha Cha Cha. A lot of this conversation stems from US copyright law, which I wouldn't say is 100% relevant to a situation involving two British publishers. Of course, I'm still under the impression that there aren't enough details given in this short story to make it a definite violation of US law.

That's all for now. Cheers - CoT ? 22:10, August 31, 2017 (UTC)

I did promise not to look into things related to other stories. But I couldn't resist a spot-check. So I will put two quotes alongside each other.

And across the world, in places that were also celebrating the millennium as well as in places still waiting for it to occur, those whose senses were attuned to disturbances in the ether were suddenly distracted.

In an old brownstone in New York, a thoughtful man levitating in a voluminous blue cloak cocked his head to one side, attempting to interpret the warnings that the spirits were screaming at him. And in a Dublin bar, a blond-haired man in a dirty beige trenchcoat looked up from his Guinness, but dismissed the odd sensations as a result of the previous fifteen pints.

But those willing to listen to and understand the psychic maelstrom emanating from London could only come up with a single answer.Described as "using" Doctor Strange and John Constantine

I'm sorry but I wouldn't have recognised either Doctor Strange or Constantine. And I know both characters. I mean, come on, is Constantine truly the only blond man drinking Guiness in a beige trenchcoat in Dublin experiencing odd sensations because of disturbances in the ether?

Five billion years in the future, in the year 5.5/Apple/26, Ezekiel Spens Lethebridge-Stuart will be the President of the National Trust, and his wife Dorcas Lethebridge-Stuart will be one of the founders of New Earth.Legacies [src]

If for you these two references exist on the same level of "using other characters", then of course it explains your position that CJB did nothing wrong. But details matter. And all things considered, these two quotes can't be further apart.
And the second thing I'd like to mention is that a deal is something more serious than obtaining a permission to use, say, the name Hulk in one sentence or an image that might look like Bart Simpson in one comic panel. A deal is a license to produce a series of publications based on certain characters. Every (serious) publisher has a link/email for requesting permissions. One might need them for scientific research, for charity, or for a throwaway reference. And giving those permissions for such purposes need not involve a huge hullabaloo. Describing such cameos as crossovers is [insert an epithet expressing a significant mismatch that sounds inoffensive to you, 'cos I don't want to offend anyone]. And there is absolutely no significance in such inquiries that would warrant some trace in memoirs. It's just run-of-the-mill boring work, just like in movies someone has to make sure that the label of the bottle is always obscured by the hand. Amorkuz 00:02, September 1, 2017 (UTC)

Yes, let's talk about Legacies Edit

I have a simple enough question. Why is it called Legacies? I am interested in the expert opinion of specialists in Lethbridge-Stewart series. Amorkuz 22:23, August 31, 2017 (UTC)

Alright, I'll bite. But I'm not a "specialist in the Lethbridge-Stewart series". I've read some of their stuff, yeah, but I've read my fair share of Titan Dr Who comics and wouldn't identify as a Titan Dr Who expert.
It's primarily called Legacies because the entire thing is about the legacy of Alistair Gordon Lethbridge-Stewart, namely "How much worse would the world be if Lethbridge-Stewart died during the London Event?" Of course, we all know the part that indicates Spencer Pemberton's legacy is to have an ancestor who will be one of the founders of New Earth alongside one of Alistair's ancestors. But a larger part of the narrative is spent on Pemberton's direct legacy left during his service in North Korea. The Great Intelligence is defeated by making it consider the legacy of its actions. The whole alternate timeline is resolved by Pemberton sacrificing himself, in turn meaning that everything that happened during or after The Web of Fear could only have occurred due to Pemberton. The story ends with Alistair visiting Pemberton's wife and children, another legacy. CoT ? 22:59, August 31, 2017 (UTC)
Thank you. I am a much happier man now. 'Cos we might disagree on which legacies are more important (for instance, the only in-text use of "legacies" refers to Pemberton's ones). But that is not important. What is important is that this serves as a proof that the above-given quote from NateBumber characterising the use of New Earth as "a blink-and-you'll-miss-it quip that has zero bearing on the plot" does not match the text. New Earth is, at the very least, one of the titular legacies of the story. Moreover, New Earth and the fact that Pemberton's family will "go on" is also the last argument that persuades Pemberton to "do the right thing". This is not "zero bearing on the plot", this is the plot resolving device, the catharsis-achieving machine as it were. Amorkuz 00:24, September 1, 2017 (UTC)
I'm tempted to say you're straight-up wrong, but I'll settle for saying that I very, very strongly disagree with this analysis. Neither Pemberton nor the plot is driven or resolved by the two words "New Earth". He doesn't go, "Ooh, shit, New Earth! That's such a cool idea." No, Pemberton and the plot are instead driven by the knowledge that his future descendants will achieve great things. If the quote had instead been,

Five billion years in the future, in the year 5.5/Apple/26, Ezekiel Spens Lethebridge-Stuart will be the President of the National Trust, and his wife Dorcas Lethebridge-Stuart will be one of the founders of the Andromeda Colony.

or even

Seventy-three trillion years in the future, in the year 5%9R&#@S6, Ezekiel Spens Lethebridge-Stuart will be the Viceroy of the Galactic Bakery, and her wife Dorcas Lethebridge-Stuart will be one of the sergeant major generals of the Plume Coterie Militia.

then literally zero part of the remainder of the text would have to change in any way whatsoever. Again, I'd have a very different opinion if the story was set on New Earth, or if Pemberton had gone "Ooh tell me more about New Earth!", or if the usage of New Earth specifically (as opposed to any other inspirational quip about his far future descendants) had any bearing on the plot in any way. But it didn't. NateBumber 03:25, September 1, 2017 (UTC)

Information gained from a representative of the Haisman Estate Edit

I've been trying all sorts of new things during this discussion, including contacting a representative of the Haisman Estate. A person who shall remain unnamed here who has studied UK copyright law extensively over the last decade and has connections not only with Candy Jar Books, but also with some people at the BBC Doctor Who office. They say that UK copyright law does not consider references in fiction to someone else's IP to be a breach of copyright. They too note that US Copyright Law is rather irrelevant in this situation.

They also brought up some stuff that you alluded to earlier in this conversation Amorkuz: the issue with the BBC using the Brig and the GI without the permission of the people that actually own the characters. I've been told that all Doctor Who novels to feature the Brig published since 1991 were made without the permission or knowledge of Henry Lincoln or Mervyn Haisman. And Death in Heaven as well; now that I look back on it the Cyber-Brig scene is a bit reminiscent of some of the examples I brought up above.

Furthermore, the representative indicated that Candy Jar Books have actually been mindful to not break copyright law, you know, like the professional publishing company they are. Candy Jar have not received a complaint from the BBC regarding When Times Change..., and people in the BBC have read the story. Like how New Earth doesn't appear in Legacies, the Doctor does not appear in When Times Change.... It is apparently no more a breach of copyright than when the BBC had a portrait of the Brigadier in Death in Heaven.

Make of this what you will, I'm not sure how this factors with T:RW SRC. But the way I'm now seeing it not only should this story be kept from deletion, but When Times Change... (short story) should be undeleted. CoT ? 22:06, September 1, 2017 (UTC)

I'm coming in late here, and I'm not going to touch the discussion of "When Times Change...". But in light of CoT's communications with the Haisman estate, I'm inclined to remove the deletion template from this page. Anyone object? —Josiah Rowe 02:46, September 4, 2017 (UTC)
Yeah, I object. User:CzechOut is the one with the most experience with licensing/charity/etc. issues. If you want a quick resolution to this whole thing, get him involved. Shambala108 03:12, September 4, 2017 (UTC)
Fair enough. I was on the verge of doing so, but then I noticed that User:Amorkuz hasn't edited since before this section was added, so they may not have seen it. (I had taken Amorkuz's three-day silence as consent, whereas it may just have been that they haven't seen the latest development.) —Josiah Rowe 19:32, September 4, 2017 (UTC)
I commend CoT's efforts at getting to the bottom of the copyright issue. Unfortunately, we didn't yet. Yes, US practice is not entirely applicable. I only posted a link to that document because I couldn't find a comparable source of information for UK. And we still don't have it. No quotes from the law. No court precedents. No publicly verifiable information. Note that the first statement of T:RW SRC is: "When writing an out-of-universe or "real world" article, your sources must be verifiable." A statement of an unnamed Haisman Estate Represantive (HER from now on) is not verifiable. So, unless the proposal is to apply lower quality standard to information used for inclusion to/exclusion from the wiki than to actually describing stories, I'm not sure how HER's statement can be currently used. (Incidentally, has Josiah been given more information than the rest of us? Or, as he did in the past, when he verified some statements from publishers and authors using publicly available sources, did that happen here too?)
Additionally, we have a T:NO SELF REF policy, which prohibits taking statements of a person about this person and includes the following maxima: "It is a fundamental truth of show business that people lie about themselves." In particular, people lie in their court depositions regarding copyright violations (cf., for instance, [8], where a judge's opinion stated: "The court finds, by clear and convincing evidence, that Stouffer has perpetuated a fraud ... through her submission of fraudulent documents as well as through her untruthful testimony"). It would, therefore, be prudent not to accept anonymous statements of one side in a copyright dispute unless they are corroborated by the other side, especially when these statements are markedly stronger than public statements of the same side that I quoted earlier.
But, on top of it all, unlike CoT, I actually do not know what was stated by HER and what was CoT's interpretation. The term "reference" was used before in this discussion. Is this a legal term suggested by HER or a descriptive term provided by CoT? I tried to find references to "reference" in the UK copyright law and failed so far. If we are to talk about the UK copyright law, we need to know the legal terminology and the definitions of these terms. Was the definition of "reference" discussed in the communication with HER? Or were there just examples? And which of the examples were offered by HER as opposed to those suggested by CoT himself? Because I did not consider the appearance of Cyber-Brig in Death in Heaven to be a reference. He is clearly identified as father of Kate Stewart, first in human image, then in Cyber form. He does appear onscreen. Is that a "reference" according to HER? Or is that copyright infringement, according to HER? It isn't clear to me at the moment.
Another thing I do not understand from HER's explanations. If anyone can use "the Doctor" provided the Doctor remains "off-screen", why didn't they do it in Legacies? The civilian/thief is only discussed by others here. If it's completely fine to say whatever about him as long as he is not there, why hiding his name? Most probably, the post above is an oversimplified description. For instance, the statement that a letter written by the Doctor can say absolutely anything as long as the Doctor does not appear seems to contradict Moral rights in United Kingdom law, more precisely, the Right to object to derogatory treatment: "The author of a copyright literary, dramatic, musical or artistic work, and the director of a copyright film, has the right in the circumstances mentioned in this section not to have his work subjected to derogatory treatment." (1988 c. 48, Part I, Chapter IV Right to object to derogatory treatment of work, Section 80) Moreover, "The rights conferred by section 80 (right to object to derogatory treatment of work) [...] apply in relation to the whole or any part of a work." (ibid, Section 89). So, if the content of the letter is derogatory towards the Doctor, it is an infringement, which contradicts an idea that any "reference" is allowable. Secondly, it is trivial to write a story or even a novel in the form of letters from the Doctor read by the Brig (we do have a short story that consists entirely of emails, for instance). The current version of HER's explanation suggests that this would be fine because the Doctor never appears: we only see the Brig reading the letters. But I find it hard to believe.
In addition, there are various complex rules restricting the use of somebody's likeness: [9]. This includes the "passing off" law [10]: "Passing off takes place when someone, such as a business, passes off another party’s goods or services as if they are their own, by misrepresentation. The law of passing off protects the goodwill of a business or person from other traders." (Recall that a certain image was used to promote When Times Change...)
The situation is more complex than CoT's post describes. An anonymous leak should be the beginning of an investigation, not the end of it. Having said that, whether anonymous or not, I would be grateful for any publicly verifiable information. Amorkuz 09:29, September 9, 2017 (UTC)

I think When Times Change... is a fascinating case that certainly merits further discussion, but I don't see how it's relevant to a discussion about Legacies. Amorkuz, could you respond to my points from before CoT's Haisman Estate info? Particularly the info about Grace Holloway? – N8 20:44, September 11, 2017 (UTC)

Apology and correction of my own false statement Edit

I do not like false or incomplete information. I complained multiple times about it upthread. So, while I intend to answer Josiah Rowe, first things first. I corrected mistakes of others before, publicly. I am now correcting my own mistake, publicly. I owe an apology to Candy Jar Books for stating something that seemed as the only explanation for the facts that I saw. However, I was wrong. The false statement is removed. I feel, however, that I owe an explanation to the community. So I will simply state the facts, which haven't changed.

The site of the Lethbridge-Stewart series runs a news section broken into months. In this section, every month from May 2015 till June 2017 has its own page and holds at least one news item. The page for August 2017 also exists. The only missing month is July 2017, the month when the news of When Times Change was announced. A Google search for "When Times Change" and "Candy Jar Books", or for "When Times Change" and "Lethbridge-Steward", returns no hits from websites of the series (https://lethbridgestewartnovels.wordpress.com) or the publisher (http://www.candy-jar.co.uk/books/candyjarbooks.html).

Neither the Facebook nor the Twitter accounts of the Lethbridge-Stewart series mentions the title When Times Change. They both feature a link related to it, described as the Brigadier having a message. Neither describes it as a publication, story or anything of the kind, just a special message from the brigadier. The only place I could find the actual title (other than on DW news aggregators and some very shady places) was on two sites: http://us2.campaign-archive1.com and http://mailchi.mp, the former claiming to be related to the latter. The latter describes itself as "the world’s largest marketing automation platform. Millions of customers, from small e-commerce shops to big online retailers, use MailChimp to reach their customers and grow their business." From what I can see, this is an email marketing website, which suggests that the information about When Times Change with the title included was distributed primarily (only?) by email. In fact, only today, after weeks of searching, I learned that the full text of When Times Change is posted on this mail archive(?) server. I also noticed that the word "story" is never used there to describe When Times Change. At least I was not able to find "story" and "When Times Change" in one place.

My mistake stems primarily from the lack of imagination. I could not imagine that the name of a story published by a book publishing company would not be in any way present on any of the websites that are clearly attributable to this company. For this lack of imagination, I once again apologise. I was wrong to state that it was removed. It appears that When Times Change was simply never present on the publisher's websites.

PS Re: answering to Josiah Rowe. I would appreciate a chance to respond. But after making a mistake, I try to ensure that it is not repeated, which requires careful research. Unfortunately, at the beginning of the school year, there are more pressing RL concerns, which, based on his former posts, Josiah Rowe of all people can sympathise with. Unfortunately, for today, I've more than exhausted my time limit. Amorkuz 22:14, September 4, 2017 (UTC)

That's fine. Take your time. I just mistook three days' silence for assent. —Josiah Rowe 01:47, September 5, 2017 (UTC)