Here is the update posted on the Spidermind Facebook Page, for all of you who don’t have Facebook.
The Copyright Troll is now Starting to Bite.
Here at Spidermind Games, we have worked hard to try to prevent the actions of one person from having an effect on the running of our business and most importantly the fulfilment of the last few backers from the EDRPG Kickstarter. Unfortunately, this person’s actions and his greed alongside those of his co-conspirators and the law firm they have hired, is now having a profound effect on the ability of Spidermind Games to fulfil our final pledges.
No, Spidermind Games is not hanging up its gloves and walking away from this but we can no longer ignore the effects this malicious litigation is having on our small company.
As I am sure many of you are aware, we have partnered with GamesQuest and have asked them to handle all our fulfilment requirements. Despite some data issues from our end we were expecting to have the final tranche of backers fulfilled last week on Thursday. Due to no response or indeed any action appearing from any of the complainants or their lawyers, we were also expecting KickStarter to reinstate our Battle Cards campaign.
Unfortunately, without the KS campaign funds, not only are we unable to make the Battle Cards but we are also unable to pay the final amount to GamesQuest for the fulfilment right now. ***This is only temporary*** as we are due the third quarter (Jul-Sep) distribution earnings from EDRPG which will more than cover the outstanding amount, but this doesn’t make the added delay any less aggravating. As soon as the funds arrive from our distributors, we will settle our dues with GamesQuest and they can complete the final pledges. If you are one of those caught in this maelstrom then we can only apologise and reassure you that we are doing all we can to resolve this.
Alright, so what are you doing about it?
Frontier Developments, the owners of the Elite Dangerous brand have been superb in their support of us in this issue and we have now joined forces with their legal representatives to seek redress against what we see as malicious litigation. As part of that action, now that it has been three months since the original take down and yet nothing has appeared from any of the complaining parties, our lawyers are writing directly to Kickstarter to ask that we be reinstated. With no complaint, there cannot be any suspension.
For anyone who is familiar with the English legal system, no action is allowed in a law court without the complainants first proving that they have tried to seek remedy by all other means. In this case, the pre-action protocol for the complainants would be a letter before action setting out what they believe we have breached and a declaration stating that they have proof to show that they are legitimate owners of the breached material. We have received nothing.
For the troll who began this action, his part and that of his co-conspirators is clear, and remedy (if we were so minded) can be sought directly from them for the financial damage that this action has caused to us. What seems slightly bizarre is that the law firm hired by these people are refusing to engage in any correspondence either. By not conforming to the required protocol of a regulated law firm they run the risk of also being accused of engaging in malicious litigation. Let us hope Kickstarter are sympathetic to our exasperated pleas.
Whatever the reason for this complete silence and complete lack of any action, our lawyers are now engaging KickStarter directly so that we can prove action is being taken and claims will be made but not from the troll – against him. Let us hope that this direct action has the result that we all wish for which is a completion of the Battle Cards campaign and the final delivery of the long over due EDRPG products.
Thank you once again for your continued support and patience.
Jon & Oliver