JMS on Usenet


Subject: Re: JMS: CafePress
Date: Thu, 17 Nov 2005 06:20:44 +0000 (UTC)

Meghan wrote:
> Hi there,
> I have a question for you, and since I read all the archives on
>, I'm pretty sure it hasn't been asked before.
> I was looking around at the shops on CafePress, and noticed a lot of
> fan made items for things like Star Wars and EverQuest and such.  There
> are, however, very few Babylon 5 items.
> If one were to start a shop on CafePress with B5 related items, what
> could be done without violating copyright?  If the answer is "Nothing,"
> I will definitely respect that.  I'm wondering, if there's a line,
> where it's drawn.  For example, if I made a shirt that said "I'm a
> B5er" I don't think that would be illegal, but then there's something
> like "I believe in the Ancient Egyptian God of Frustration" which gets
> a little closer to what I'm thinking is a grey area.  Then you have
> direct quotes, such as "Faith Manages", "The avalanche has already
> started. It is too late for the pebbles to vote", or "If you go to
> Z'ha'dum, you will die".  Obviously, no pictures on any of these ... I
> know that would cross the line.
> Obviously, I don't want to do anything that could get me in trouble
> legally, but mostly I don't want to do anything that would get me in
> trouble with you.  This is your intellectual property; I am just a fan
> looking to make fun stuff for other fans.

The glitch, of course, is that the quotes, like the scripts, are the
property of the author, so they really can't be used in that way by

That being said...the folks there have been asking me about doing
something along those lines...putting out the Declaration of
Principles, some Londo and Ivanova quotes on various and sundry thinggs
(posters, mugs, t-shirts, that sort of thing) and I'm giving it some
thought.  If there's enough interest in it, I might go ahead and tell
them to do a few things here and there.  (I'm just amused by the idea
of a mug emblazoned with "But in Purple I'm Stunning")

One sidelight...we just put the next volume to bed, and it's 465 pages
in length, 11 pages longer than volume 1.  Three could potentially hit
470 to 475 pages.  (No change in price, however.)

I have got to learn to write fewer words.