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Site Rules Revamp
Forum Index - Important - Announcements - Site Rules Revamp
Pages: « 1 »
In the last months, we’ve been working on improving the rules in order to make them more comprehensible, and cover more ground than the old rules did. Click here to view the rules page.

The current rules now include:

*A summary, which can be taken as the rule itself
*A description that explains more in more detail when and where the rules applies, and if applicable, exceptions and alternatives
*A justification, which explains why the rule exists and is important to follow
*The consequence(s) for not following the rule

As of now, every user, new and old, including staff, is expected to follow these rules. You are also required to read and understand the summary column of every rule. Reading the other columns is not mandatory, but still recommended.

Please note that the rules may change in the future. For transparency, we have made a public changelog for rules and submission guidelines, which you can find here. Major changes to the rules may come with a general announcement in addition to the changelog update.

Feel free to use this thread for questions, concerns, or feedback about the new rules.
I only really have one question/suggestion about the rules and I'm surprised it's not addressed:

How transparent are private messages, and is there a guarantee that they are "private" unless it's used for mockery or stalking and is reported?

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Are you an ASM coder and want a boost on your Steam, Switch, PS4, or Xbox One accounts? Private Message me for details.
(I also offer SMW Custom Songs in exchange for ASM! I don't do ports though unless it's to remix.)

Want progress on 100 Rooms of Enemies: The Nightmare Edition? Go here to see.

Are you a sample porter and wanna help with 100 Rooms of Enemies: The Nightmare Edition? Private Message me or Mellonpizza for details. Expect trading or boosting in exchange. 4 more left.


admins don't read pms unless there's evidence of harassment, NSFW content, or if someone is spamming PMs to other users. beyond that, if an admin chooses to read someone's PM box, a log on the site visible to all staff states which admin looked in whos PM box - so hopefully that should further assure that no one idly reads other people's private messages

unless, y'know, the entire staff team is in on it :O
Originally posted by NewSiteRules
By uploading your file to the site, you are giving SMW Central a perpetual, irrevocable, royalty-free, non-exclusive and worldwide license to host and redistribute your file; this license is non-transferable so long as your account remains active. You are also giving permission to anyone, including SMW Central and its staff, to submit as an update at their discretion a modified version of your file to fix performance or incompatibility issues, compliant with the same license.


Sorry, but I have a few problems with this policy as it's currently worded. It sounds like it hasn't been entirely thought through all the way. Keep in mind you're also hosting software here, not just hacks and patches.

For example, I haven't given permission to anyone to distribute modified copies of my software... it is in fact explicitly forbidden as stated in their readme files (of course one could just distribute a separate patch for them which is perfectly fine, but I digress). And other software may have their own terms and conditions for that sort of thing, including GPL software.

I understand that you'd want to be able to fix a hack to update some issue, but you need to be careful not to overreach yourselves. At the end of the part about submitting modified versions, I'd suggest including a bit that says something to the effect of "unless otherwise prohibited by the file's own license".

And yes, that means even a hack could throw in a license about not being modified. Personally I don't have any problem with that, as I'm of the opinion that the author's wishes should be respected when possible. Plus there's always the possibility of releasing a separate patch intended to be patched over the originally patched file in such cases, even if it's a bit more inconvenient. Or I suppose you could just choose not to host hacks with such a license, though I really think it should be allowed to apply to all and not just software.


There's also that bit about "this license is non-transferable so long as your account remains active". Sooo... as soon as someone goes inactive, you're giving the site the right to give anyone else the right to distribute their file? What's up with that? #ab{o_O}
Originally posted by FuSoYa
For example, I haven't given permission to anyone to distribute modified copies of my software... it is in fact explicitly forbidden as stated in their readme files (of course one could just distribute a separate patch for them which is perfectly fine, but I digress). And other software may have their own terms and conditions for that sort of thing, including GPL software.

I understand that you'd want to be able to fix a hack to update some issue, but you need to be careful not to overreach yourselves. At the end of the part about submitting modified versions, I'd suggest including a bit that says something to the effect of "unless otherwise prohibited by the file's own license".

And yes, that means even a hack could throw in a license about not being modified.

I understand (and, to a certain extent, agree with) your point when it comes to straight-up original software, but don't you think that it's the hackers themselves who are "overreaching themselves" if they're going to try and put their own license on something like a ROM hack? Which they don't even technically own anyway?

Either way, I'm pretty sure the reasoning for the rule (as worded) is because since day one pretty much, SMWC has always intended to serve as an archive of hacks and resources for said hacks. This intention sort of loses its purpose if any and every hack or resource on the site runs the risk of being taken down at any given moment simply because the creator decided for whatever reason that they don't want it there. In fact, as far as I know, that rule has been around for years (maybe even from the start?) simply to let people know not to submit their hacks/resources/tools if they don't want to give up the complete rights to them, or if they prefer to hold their own license on the tool. However, as I said above, it would be a little bizarre if anyone IS super concerned for their ownership over minor tools and resources specifically designed to modify a copyrighted work that isn't theirs, so I suppose I shouldn't be too surprised that some people have overlooked that policy after this time.


Either way, I don't think you specifically have anything to worry about FuSoYa. Correct me if I'm mistaken, but you don't release the source code from your programs anyway, right? People shouldn't be able to modify and upload edited copies of your work anyway, even if they wanted to, but perhaps I could be wrong there.




I will say though, I too am slightly confused about the "inactivity" aspect of the rule. I've never heard that detail before...

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Currently streaming: Knytt Stories, various BLDC / C3 SMW hack submissions
I am agree with fusoya, as an author of resources, I want to have some rights over resources that I upload Here. Smwc should be only a place to share resources, smwc shouldn't have any right over my resources, when I upload something on a repository, the repository don't say "heeey, now your software is mine"
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Patreon
Youtube
Twitter
SMWControlLibX GitHub
My Discord Server
The comissions rule is a hot one. I do understand why it was created, but the rule itself feels quite vague, as there have been a couple of questions about it since it really doesn't go into details. I'll share some screencaps about a recent question regarding it in SMWC's discord [source]:



If a rule is raising some questions, I feel like there's something wrong or off about said rule. I'd like some further explanation about what it is trying to convey, while I'm not affected by it, I'm geniunely curious about that rule.

Originally posted by K.T.B.
I don't think you specifically have anything to worry about FuSoYa. Correct me if I'm mistaken, but you don't release the source code from your programs anyway, right? People shouldn't be able to modify and upload edited copies of your work anyway, even if they wanted to, but perhaps I could be wrong there.

As far I'm aware, it's totally possible to hack Lunar Magic without having its source code to allow things such as translation patches (japanese SMW scene outside SMWC has done this) and whatever other people have achieved and not released. Granted, it'd be a pain in the butt to maintain said LM releases, but that isn't what the topic is about.

Originally posted by K.T.B.
Originally posted by FuSoYa
There's also that bit about "this license is non-transferable so long as your account remains active". Sooo... as soon as someone goes inactive, you're giving the site the right to give anyone else the right to distribute their file? What's up with that? #ab{o_O}

I will say though, I too am slightly confused about the "inactivity" aspect of the rule. I've never heard that detail before...

This detail is quite interesting as well, and it worries me a bit for the same reasons it worries FuSoYa.

Originally posted by K.T.B.
However, as I said above, it would be a little bizarre if anyone IS super concerned for their ownership over minor tools and resources specifically designed to modify a copyrighted work that isn't theirs, so I suppose I shouldn't be too surprised that some people have overlooked that policy after this time.

Surprisingly enough, I'm one of these :P
I'd not like to give said license of my recent stuff on SMWC. I'd like to use SMWC as a platform to share my resources while keeping my stuff hosted elsewhere, that's why I have been posting my stuff in C3 threads, the Releases forum and other platforms outside SMWC. This doesn't really apply to resources I've remoderated recently, I've been uploading these to the appropriate sections while keeping a backup on my GitHub for a much better way to see the differences between versions and the fact that I really don't fully own them to be picky about its license status.
Originally posted by FuSoYa
For example, I haven't given permission to anyone to distribute modified copies of my software... it is in fact explicitly forbidden as stated in their readme files (of course one could just distribute a separate patch for them which is perfectly fine, but I digress). And other software may have their own terms and conditions for that sort of thing, including GPL software.


This is a very good point. I don't believe anyone was thinking of tools with additional, more restrictive licenses when this was made. This has been fixed.



Originally posted by FuSoYa
And yes, that means even a hack could throw in a license about not being modified. Personally I don't have any problem with that, as I'm of the opinion that the author's wishes should be respected when possible.... Or I suppose you could just choose not to host hacks with such a license, though I really think it should be allowed to apply to all and not just software.


This isn't something we've had to deal with, but should this happen in the future, we likely won't accept it as a matter of policy.

Mods need to be able to edit submissions to do their jobs properly. One may fix minor mistakes in a hack on their own before accepting, or label a hack "fixme" because it breaks in recent emulator update, or edit an ASM submission to bring it up to new standards (for example, making something compatible with SA-1). These aren't issues with tools, but they are for all other submissions. Hosting non-tool submissions we can't modify makes all that impossible, and makes us liable if we update it anyway without realizing, because additional licenses in this scenario are very non-standard and easy to miss. Readmes included with hacks are not always read, even if they should be.

While we respect whatever additional licensing restrictions someone may put on their submissions, hosting those submissions once submitted is done at our sole discretion and we reserve the right to remove any submission if hosting it places an unnecessary legal burden on the relevant section moderation team: for example, having to maintain a list of what submissions can't be modified.



Originally posted by FuSoYa
Plus there's always the possibility of releasing a separate patch intended to be patched over the originally patched file in such cases, even if it's a bit more inconvenient.


Hacks of hacks (as in, anything where the intended source file is not vanilla SMW) will never be accepted into the hacks section, so uh... yeah. It's something you can technically do, but your audience is going to be much smaller so there's not much point.



Originally posted by K.T.B.
I understand (and, to a certain extent, agree with) your point when it comes to straight-up original software, but don't you think that it's the hackers themselves who are "overreaching themselves" if they're going to try and put their own license on something like a ROM hack? Which they don't even technically own anyway?


The entire point of patches is to only distribute the edits, edits which theoretically are made by the person who made the patch. It follows that the patch is the property of the hack author, and subject to whatever licensing they choose.

This is a can of worms you don't want to open, because if you're right, then SMWC can't legally host most of what it does, and neither can any other romhacking site.



Originally posted by anonimzwx
I am agree with fusoya, as an author of resources, I want to have some rights over resources that I upload Here. Smwc should be only a place to share resources, smwc shouldn't have any right over my resources, when I upload something on a repository, the repository don't say "heeey, now your software is mine"


See my previous response to this comment.

You fundamentally misunderstand licensing and ownership. SMWC doesn't own your files and never claimed to own them at any point in time.



Originally posted by lx5
The comissions rule is a hot one. I do understand why it was created, but the rule itself feels quite vague, as there have been a couple of questions about it since it really doesn't go into details. I'll share some screencaps about a recent question regarding it in SMWC's discord [source]:



If a rule is raising some questions, I feel like there's something wrong or off about said rule. I'd like some further explanation about what it is trying to convey, while I'm not affected by it, I'm geniunely curious about that rule.


The rule is pretty straightforward: don't use this site to do anything related to commissions for hacks or hack resources.

We can't control commissions done using other sites (think Patreon), nor will we warn or ban anyone for doing so on other sites unless it's brought to SMWC somehow or it somehow becomes a legal issue for us.

This also covers advertising for commission services on other sites. If you take commissions, don't mention it on this site in any way.
Originally posted by Noivern
Originally posted by anonimzwx
I am agree with fusoya, as an author of resources, I want to have some rights over resources that I upload Here. Smwc should be only a place to share resources, smwc shouldn't have any right over my resources, when I upload something on a repository, the repository don't say "heeey, now your software is mine"


See my previous response to this comment.

You fundamentally misunderstand licensing and ownership. SMWC doesn't own your files and never claimed to own them at any point in time.


Originally posted by Policies
By uploading your file to the site, you are giving SMW Central a perpetual, irrevocable, royalty-free, non-exclusive and worldwide license to host and redistribute your file; this license is non-transferable so long as your account remains active. You are also giving permission to anyone, including SMW Central and its staff, to submit as an update at their discretion a modified version of your file to fix performance or incompatibility issues, compliant with the same license.


I understand that someone can use my resource on a hack or modify part of the code and i am agree that someone can do that, my 2 problem with that policy is that on the policy never says "redistribute the file ON the website only and without money profit", my second problem is that the user can't remove the file, why that policy is irrevocable and perpetual? that second part for me is a disrespect for the author of the resource and one of the main reason why i dont upload any important thing here, in any file repository you can remove your resources even if that resource is an important project.

With only saying that the policy is irrevocable and perpetual and that the license to host and redistribute never says that is ON the website only and without any money profit, for my that policy is basically that you are giving the ownership to smwcentral of the file that you uploads.
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Patreon
Youtube
Twitter
SMWControlLibX GitHub
My Discord Server
the thing about C1 is that tools like LM (among others) are not uploaded by the developer, so they don't get any input into C1 being forced onto them.

for custom licenses, i think it should be software only. the way i've always seen it (because its the way it always worked): if you want to modify or redistribute asm, hacks, gfx, music, etc, you ask the author. they retain ownership and you still need to give credit. if they say no, then no.


about C5: does that only apply to commissions related to romhacking? regular art/music commissions are still ok? its not too clear


oh about B7: do we still need to maintain IE compatibility?
Originally posted by Ladida
oh about B7: do we still need to maintain IE compatibility?

The only browsers supported by the site are the latest versions of Firefox, Chrome, and iOS Safari (but only partially because I can't test on it). The same should apply to user content, too.
Originally posted by lx5
As far I'm aware, it's totally possible to hack Lunar Magic without having its source code to allow things such as translation patches (japanese SMW scene outside SMWC has done this) and whatever other people have achieved and not released. Granted, it'd be a pain in the butt to maintain said LM releases, but that isn't what the topic is about.


Yes, I'm aware of the Japanese patches. Which I've always been fine with, so long as they're in patch form. In fact I helped create one of the first ones (for 1.61 or 1.62 I think), although I don't know if that one was distributed in patch form back then. It wasn't required as that one was kind of a semi-official release. I was approached by someone that wanted to translate it to Japanese, so I sent him some files to translate and send back, then I recompiled LM and he did the extra hacking for parts that weren't in the files.

Originally posted by Noivern
This is a very good point. I don't believe anyone was thinking of tools with additional, more restrictive licenses when this was made. This has been fixed.


Alright, cool. #ab{:)}

Originally posted by Noivern
While we respect whatever additional licensing restrictions someone may put on their submissions, hosting those submissions once submitted is done at our sole discretion and we reserve the right to remove any submission if hosting it places an unnecessary legal burden on the relevant section moderation team: for example, having to maintain a list of what submissions can't be modified.


Sounds reasonable. I don't think it'd be a burden in most cases (and other sites seem to be able to handle it just fine), but the site certainly doesn't have to host anything it doesn't want to.

Originally posted by Ladida
the thing about C1 is that tools like LM (among others) are not uploaded by the developer, so they don't get any input into C1 being forced onto them.


Whoops, I had a feeling someone would bring that up if I said anything. Oh well... might as well just come out and say it then.

Ladida is right. Or rather half right. The site doesn't actually get to force a license on people that haven't agreed to it. And as I have never submitted any of my programs to this site, I never agreed to any such terms, and therefore have never considered this site to have a separate license to them.

The only license you have to my programs can be found in their readme files.

(now everyone just be very careful and don't ask the obvious question after reading that... #ab{¬_¬})


Anyway, with that out of the way... if you want to know why I'd likely never personally submit my files here, it's because as with anonimzwx I too would probably get no further than "irrevocable" before declining. I get why you wouldn't want to have to remove something from the site, but those kinds of terms tend to set off alarm bells for me. I much prefer sites that respect people's wishes on that sort of thing when possible.


As for the rest of it, no one has yet addressed what that "this license is non-transferable so long as your account remains active" bit is doing in there. It effectively means that once your account is inactive, the site has the right to give anyone else the right to distribute submitted files.

Even after mulling it over for a few days, I still cannot come up with a single justifiable reason why the site would ask for the right to transfer the license. What, were you guys planning to go crazy and sell the distribution rights for the files of inactive users or something?

I also see that the wording of the policy has been played with a bit. Before it wanted the right to modify files "to fix performance or incompatibility issues". But to quote the description, it's now become "For all other updates, your permission is required, unless your account is not active." I can probably guess what this is for (updating ASM files and such when their author isn't around anymore), but again it looks like you're trying to create a blanket policy for resources that shouldn't be applied to other things. Such as hacks. Fixing those is one thing, but now you want to be able to do anything at all to hacks when their author isn't around?
Originally posted by Telinc1
The only browsers supported by the site are the latest versions of Firefox, Chrome, and iOS Safari

Maybe the site could invest in the future for an Standard compatible approach? I mean, no coding/hacking or whatsoever for specifically aiming to any browser's oversights.

That would be extremely beneficial for a healthy world wide web, particularly given the fact Google is almost a monopoly, and abused its huge share of the browser market to literally kill Microsoft Edge's rendering engine.

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New Technology Interactive Productions - The Overworld Hacker
--------------NTI Productions-------------
----------The OW/SMW Hacker----------
Originally posted by FuSoYa
As for the rest of it, no one has yet addressed what that "this license is non-transferable so long as your account remains active" bit is doing in there. It effectively means that once your account is inactive, the site has the right to give anyone else the right to distribute submitted files.

Reading over it again, I think I do now get what that policy's trying to say. It basically just means that anyone who's willing can fix problems with submissions if the author isn't around. If the author of a hack or resource is still active on the site, then the burden would be on them to fix any issues or bugs with a resource or hack they've made (unless they make it clear that they don't care about fixing it themselves, or give that permission to someone else), but if they're inactive then the site has no choice but to allow anyone else who's willing to fix it.

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Currently streaming: Knytt Stories, various BLDC / C3 SMW hack submissions
Perhaps, but I'd say that's already covered by "you also allow anyone, including SMW Central and its staff, to submit as an update at their discretion a modified version of your file if your account is not active or to fix performance or incompatibility issues, compliant with the same license". That last bit "compliant with the same license" means the site already retains the previously stated right for distribution now that the file was modified.

Transferring the right to distribute the file to another party simply isn't needed, and it leaves a potentially scary hole in the policy.



Edit: Actually one possibility did just occur to me... it may be meant to allow for hosting on third party sites like Github for continuing some kind of tool. Probably should have thought of that sooner.
The bit about being transferable if your account is inactive has been removed. It should have been removed the last time I posted. #smrpg{ohno}

From the changelog thread circa Jan. 27:

Quote
As intended, the wording regarding active accounts was supposed to allow anyone to submit updates to submissions in which the author is inactive. But as written it actually allowed SMWC to submit it to other websites (which strictly speaking, we shouldn't care about). This has been fixed.
Ah ok, thanks for clearing that up. #ab{:)}
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