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28 January 2005 @ 05:35 pm
Ethics in FMA Fanart  
Hello everyone! I've been a member of this community for a few weeks now, but this is my first post.

I'm sorry to bring forth a touchy subject such as this as a first post, but I felt it had it be done in the light of a few recent posts. I am not condemning any of the people who made these posts, I'm merely pointing a few things out and asking what the people here think about it.

Recently, the following link to a post was made by one of the mods (billypilgrim) in this community:

http://www.livejournal.com/community/quietdistrict/1197.html

Just today, the following post was made:

http://www.livejournal.com/community/fm_alchemist/1634975.html

These posts contain images from quite a popular Japanese artist by the name of Haruka Sena. In the first post, I asked the mod to post a link to the artist's website because originally no credit was given to the artist behind the base used for icons 2. and 3.

The reason I'm making a post to point this out is simply because I feel that the matter of using artists' works for public purposes e.g Icons, livejournal layouts, website layouts, mood icons, etc witout their permission needed to be discussed in a friendly manner.

You don't have the permission of this artist to make public use of their work and I, personally, think that if you want to keep her work in your HD or have a wallpaper in your computer that's perfectly fine. I do, however, think it's unfair to this artist (or any other artist for that matter) to alter their works and then have them on display where people can see them (such as in the instances mentioned above) knowing fully well that on her website - even if you can't understand it - it says clearly that her work is copyrighted and you may not reproduce it in any shape or form under what I believe are Japanese laws of copyright (although I may be wrong about that last bit).

You could argue that it's not doing the artist any damage and that Hagaren is not her property to begin with, and I might be inclined to agree with you. Hagaren's original artwork is also copyrighted and yet I see no problem in using it in any of the public ways mentioned above. I would, however, ask you this:

Would you take (and perhaps alter) and use ART from sakkiarte, ponderosa121, art_de_cerise or, indeed, any of the other great artists that post here without their specific permission?

Art is a personal way of expression and these artists work very hard to make their work and websites unique, so that they can give visitors an original experience when viewing their work. Next time you think about using someone's art just because you don't know them personally or you think they'll never find out, I urge you to think twice. If you were the owner of such art, would YOU be happy people took it, used it and altered it without your permission?

I would like to hear what you guys, artists and non-artist alike, think of this.

Feel free to post away ^_^
 
 
Current Mood: contemplativecontemplative
Current Music: Metallica
 
 
Sarah: edogundamnook on January 28th, 2005 10:28 am (UTC)
I see where you are coming at and I agree with you. Just wanted to make that clear. But the second link (the wallpapers) are actually from Haruka Sena's website. All the post did was link it back here for the others in the community to see. She did not make claim that she made these, but found them on the creator's website. So I don't think the poster is at any fault by providing a link from Haruka Sena's site to show off her work that is already made public by Sena herself. ^.^
patosanpatosan on January 28th, 2005 11:44 am (UTC)
I wasn't saying there was anything wrong with the second post at all :D I was merely pointing out to the usage of such images for public purposes. Sorry if I didnt make myself clear. There was nothing wrong with it all.
billypilgrim on January 28th, 2005 10:31 am (UTC)
Also, just to take note, that my post was not in fm_alchemist, but my own graphics journal quietdistrict. Fake LJ cut. :D;
patosanpatosan on January 28th, 2005 11:47 am (UTC)
I didn't say it was ^_^ Read above:

Recently, the following link to a post was made by one of the mods ([info]arex_kun) in this community.

And just so you know, this wasn't directed at you or anything. It's been a sore ubject of debate with a few of the icon communities and a friend of mine got expelled from a Gravitation icon community for pointing out stuff about Fanart. I just thought I'd get more views on the matter, that's all. XD
-rosa_aquafire on January 28th, 2005 10:34 am (UTC)
Hmm. I've taken to emailing the artists I get the art from, and asking them for permission to icon their art if I give them full credit. I've only ever had one say no, and most are very thrilled that I asked first.

I understand that for people who don't know Japanese, that's not really an option, but, while it sucks, babelfish will get the point across, eh? ^_^
art_de_cerise: sweatdropart_de_cerise on January 28th, 2005 10:42 pm (UTC)
Oh wow. That's really nice of you! I think Japanese artists would probably appreciate it even more if non-Japanese speaking people make the effort to request permission!
you may call me an automanienne.: hagane no renkinjutsushiandtheafterglow on January 28th, 2005 10:35 am (UTC)
taking someone else's artwork (and especially altering it, or, for all intents and purposes putting your own name on it specifically or through not crediting them) is WRONG. plain and simple. i don't think there's any debate about it, and the only people who would defend doing it are those who actually DO it, and don't understand the hard work and emotion that goes into creating something.

it's one thing if the artist says that the work is free to use for whatever reason, but unless they do say that, there is no reason for someone else to take it and use it or claim it as their own.
patosanpatosan on January 28th, 2005 11:48 am (UTC)
Agreed :D
(no subject) - nikui_kuyami on January 28th, 2005 12:18 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - patosan on January 28th, 2005 12:30 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - nikui_kuyami on January 28th, 2005 12:40 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - patosan on January 28th, 2005 12:49 pm (UTC) (Expand)
The Zombie who ate Tokyo: don't scream so loud + blankmidzilla on January 28th, 2005 10:49 am (UTC)
I'm sick of this art debates
[Please note that I do not direct this at you, lovely poster. This is an open bitch and I'm sorry if I hurt/offend you in any way]

In the old TOS (or in the last time I read the TOS), its against the "rules" to use any art in icons. At all. And I mean official art from your favorite anime/manga/cartoon/whatever. I mean pictures of celerbarties. I mean anything that wasn't hand drawn by you and completely orginal (or a picture of you or taken by you) was a violation of the TOS. Technically it still is cause its posting copyrighted material (Part XVI: Member content covers this).

Gives a whole other face to posting icons, yeah?

In the past I had problems with people bitching at me about using art in my icons. There is wrong with it. Why? Cause Haruka Sena, sakkiarte, etc., art all artists just like Hiromu Arakawa. None of them, in all logic, are better then the others. Why? Because every artist has rights to their art.

So farking make icons.
patosanpatosan on January 28th, 2005 11:57 am (UTC)
Re: I'm sick of this art debates
I'm not offended at all.

I totally see what you mean and that's why I said that the whole argument could be null, but also note I wasn't just refering to icons, and as a matter of fact, I don't really care about the icons at all. I was refering to the whole public display, and by that I included icons but I was actually more concerned with Livejournal layouts and website layouts that contain pictures that are not your own.

I agree that it all infringes on someone else's copyright and that's why I called the post Ethics in FANART. I feel that when it comes to something as personal as fanart, it's not just a matter of copyright, but also of recognition to the individual who carried out the work. I see it as a bit of an unspoken rule that fanart and official art shold be treated separately. After all, the people making the official art are benefiting from it (posters sold at shops, manga, magazines, etc) whereas the person doing the fanart generally isn't. Fanarts are works of love and should be respected as such. That was the only thing I wanted to get accross.
Marikaitou_marina on January 28th, 2005 10:49 am (UTC)
Well, the other thing is, this could also be argued about the many doujinshi icons I see around. Doujinshi are still technically fanart, but I rarely see people stating that they've asked permission for the use of the doujinshi images. Same technically goes for scanlations. If you're going to say it's wrong on one front, ya gotta say it's wrong on all fronts.
patosanpatosan on January 28th, 2005 12:01 pm (UTC)
I agree with you (see other replies above), but also note that doujinshies are usauly sold and make money and fanart usually doesn't. Once it's out there for the majority of the public, I believe it's not so bad to use it since it's so widely available anyway. Other works, however, are a lot more personal and should get given special treatment, or at least that's what I think.
(no subject) - kaitou_marina on January 28th, 2005 12:58 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - kaitou_marina on January 28th, 2005 01:00 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - patosan on January 28th, 2005 01:14 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - patosan on January 28th, 2005 01:09 pm (UTC) (Expand)
raidenokreuz76: Edoraidenokreuz76 on January 28th, 2005 11:06 am (UTC)
as an artist , i agree that taking someone's art and altering their appearance , or selling them whatever is considered wrong but then again some people make their arts for everyone to use lol so go figures >_> XD
Nalavashi: Lust [by nalavashi]nalavashi on January 28th, 2005 11:18 am (UTC)
I see no more fault in making icons from published doujinshi than making icons from screencaps, manga, or even a page scanned from a magazine. They are all *technically* illegal things to do, with copyright infringement and whatnot.

I think there is a difference and deeper wrong in using an unpublished fanart that someone makes though, without the artist's permission. It doesn't sound much better to say it this way, but if your work is published in a doujinshi or something, people are going to use it the same as they would a magazine picture or screencaps. If it's a fanart that you drew for yourself or your website, something that's *not* published and you're not making profit off of it, then it shouldn't be used by others without permission.
Aja: FMAimayb1 on January 28th, 2005 11:52 am (UTC)
That's how I feel about it, too.
(no subject) - patosan on January 28th, 2005 12:05 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - patosan on January 28th, 2005 12:02 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Cuddlefishmoumusu on January 28th, 2005 11:31 am (UTC)
I draw pictures sometimes and if someone wants to make icons out of them, I would actually rather they just made the icon and left me alone. Asking someone for permission often means talking to someone, and if you're going to do it right, that has to include some kind of praise. Well, I don't ever want to ask for praise/cooing and human contact out of someone who's just making an icon. I haven't thought very long and hard about it, but if my pictures are worth paying for to use, that's not what I want to charge for them. As long as they're not saying, "I made this original, not that crazy girl with the ugly journal," good, fine.

(I get the feeling what I just said was really extreme, but, well, I was asked 「_「, and I don't want to make anyone feel bad for what they're already doing if it works for them.)
patosanpatosan on January 28th, 2005 12:05 pm (UTC)
I draw pictures sometimes and if someone wants to make icons out of them, I would actually rather they just made the icon and left me alone. Asking someone for permission often means talking to someone, and if you're going to do it right, that has to include some kind of praise.

If you are not fussed, that's great, but that's just your personal feelings on the matter and you simply can't expect everyone to feel the same way. And I wasn't refering to icons only (they concern me the least), I was more worried about Lj layouts and personal websites layouts :D

Thanks for the input.
(no subject) - moumusu on January 28th, 2005 12:58 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - patosan on January 28th, 2005 01:05 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - moumusu on January 28th, 2005 01:48 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - patosan on January 28th, 2005 05:20 pm (UTC) (Expand)
a fangirl: l pron (konayuki)treesock on January 28th, 2005 12:13 pm (UTC)
As soon as the stuff's posted on the internets, it's going to go places, and people aren't going to go through the trouble to track it.

If I were a good artist, and I suddenly stumbled over an LJ layout with one of my fanarts, I'd be... well, pleased to know that people liked my stuff, but I'd politely ask them to credit me.
patosanpatosan on January 28th, 2005 12:20 pm (UTC)
I personally didn't even see any harm in using and crediting without asking, but it's been after I've read what a lot of Japanese artists have to say on the matter and how they feel about it all, that I've come to understand them better. They want to have something especial to offer to their visitors at their site and competition in this front is fierce in Japan. It's sometimes through their sites that future talents are singled out and it's also a matter of bussiness and online portfolios out there. Most of the really good artists use their website as a means to expose themselves to the competitive world of art and manga in Japan, and so taking their work and using it for your website layout is offensive to them.

It's a very intereesitng discussion and I'm learning things I didn't know, so feel free to input your thoghts on it or any of the other replies above. Thanks for participating ^_^
nikui_kuyami on January 28th, 2005 12:15 pm (UTC)
It'd be much appreciated if people asked the artists for permission before using their works, by the artist and other people who like their art. I've been sad by some of my favorite Japanese art sites that were closed down, because people kept using their works with out asking.

Haruka Sena... Sounds familiar, but I don't recognize her art. ^^;;
patosanpatosan on January 28th, 2005 12:23 pm (UTC)
It's a touchy subject for them and I wanted to learn more about the way people view this subject in the western world, since it's very different over there.

Tons of people use art by Sena, especially in the Gravitation fandom. The mod of fma_awards is currently using an icon with Sena's work in it :)
馬鹿やろー女 // バカヤロー女: Concernedbakayaro_onna on January 28th, 2005 12:54 pm (UTC)
You already know my view on this, pato. *grin*

For those who do not know, my view is - if the piece is not your own artwork, you have no right to do anything with it, if it will be viewed in a public venue. Manga, doujinshi, fanart and art books all fall into the "off-limits" realm in my book. I have scans I keep for my personal screensaver and wallpaper but I do not use any of these materials to make icons, layouts, wallpaper, banners and the like for public viewing. If I need artwork, I make it myself, sometimes with tragic results, but it my own work. I am less strict about official artwork but I still do not use it for anything that will be published online.

If you like a particular artist's work, wouldn't you like to protect their art so new fans could enjoy the work? If the artist knows their work is not being abused, it helps encourage the artist to make more pieces of your favorite characters for years to come.

If you were the artist, wouldn't you want your work respected? Finding out someone is using your art without permission may seem like the sincerest form of flattery to some, but it is stealing and plagerism, pure and simple.

Some popular fanart artists have completely pulled their sites off the web because their artwork was getting abused by people who thought any graphic on the web is a freebie to use however they wish to use it. The web is not a bargain basement sale when it comes to graphics.

In some cases, the pulled site has disrupted the artist's marketability because potential clients who are browsing online for an artist cannot access that artist's website anymore. The artist loses that freelance business, which might have helped pay the rent or feed the children and we lose the joy of seeing their artwork anymore.

In the case of Haruka Sena, she specifically states on her website her works are not to be reproduced or reprinted, without exception. She also states she never gives permission for her works to be posted elsewhere.

So, what to do? If you cannot draw, ask your artistic friends to draw something for you or commission a piece from a professional.
Ask permission for use prior to the art order.
patosanpatosan on January 28th, 2005 12:59 pm (UTC)
Ever so eloquent, Onna :D

I wish everyone could read your reply.
(no subject) - theboxization on January 28th, 2005 02:41 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - avianthropy on January 28th, 2005 03:18 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - theboxization on January 28th, 2005 03:44 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - avianthropy on January 28th, 2005 04:23 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - theboxization on January 28th, 2005 04:51 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - moumusu on January 28th, 2005 03:06 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - bakayaro_onna on January 28th, 2005 06:23 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - moumusu on January 28th, 2005 07:59 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - art_de_cerise on January 28th, 2005 08:58 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - kithal on January 28th, 2005 09:12 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - moumusu on January 28th, 2005 09:36 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - art_de_cerise on January 28th, 2005 10:26 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(Anonymous) on January 28th, 2005 02:03 pm (UTC)
First of all, sorry for the typos, if any, because first: i got a new keyboard that's completely different from my older one, and second, english is not ny original language. ^^;

Well, I don't like using online fanarts for public graphics either. :/ I fell the same way and at the same time understand that this copyright thing is a very complex matter; using official artwork that's widely known is one thing, but using fanarts that people wouldn't recognize where it's from or who's the artist that drew it is a bit different. (Actually, to me that doesn't just aplly to fanarts, but to original works of very unknown people too, but that's a more sensitive matter and I know it sounds very hypocritical, so i won't go deeper into that.)
I'm an artist myself (well, uh, kinda, but I like drawing XP), and as much as that might seem flattering because it would show that people like my artwork, i'd hate to see people using my work without permission in any way. fanarts are a very personal thing, and when an artist shows it on his/her website, it isn't for people to use them as they want, it is to show them their work, to express themselves or to show their feelings towards a series they like.
I've seem signatures on forums using online fanarts and people just crediting the original image to "whoever has drawn it". Seeing such disrespect to the original artist pisses me off. =/
patosanpatosan on January 29th, 2005 05:08 am (UTC)
fanarts are a very personal thing, and when an artist shows it on his/her website, it isn't for people to use them as they want, it is to show them their work, to express themselves or to show their feelings towards a series they like.

That's how many people feel and why I think fanart should be given a different treatment from official art. Thanks a lot for taking the time to comment and post your views :D
Zranazrana on January 28th, 2005 02:10 pm (UTC)
I'm reminded of a few of my drawings turning up on other websites. A used to get comments through Elfwood every now and then with people asking to use my art for this or that. (Print out and color, use for RP character, and, once, for a tattoo O.O) One time someone asked to use some unicorns of mine (a short phase of mine in early/mid highschool) for their website for layout. All these were with permission.

Only times I said no were when the pictures were some sort of self-portrait/charicature---I don't want my doodles of myself used by others.

Thus, when I somehow encountered some site (foreign I think) with this drawing (well, I think it was that one, can't remember for sure), that made a layout with it, I was upset. I think they DID credit, but didn't ask--if they had used any of the NON me art, I wouldn't have cared. But knowing someone has a layout website for OTHERS to use the files for their own websites, and one of the layouts is a my drawing of MYSELF--that's just a freaky feeling knowing that strangers are looking at ME.

Um. Hi. Point is: Using my art is flattering, but it's not as flattering when it's done without credit, and it's disturbing when it's self-portrait type stuff that's used, credit or not.
patosanpatosan on January 29th, 2005 05:11 am (UTC)
Um. Hi. Point is: Using my art is flattering, but it's not as flattering when it's done without credit, and it's disturbing when it's self-portrait type stuff that's used, credit or not.

That is very disturbing! It's upsetting and disrepectful to do that and I sympathize with you. Having them on icons is still not quite so bad, but on a layout? That's so disgraceful :/
(no subject) - zrana on January 29th, 2005 02:15 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - patosan on January 29th, 2005 04:40 pm (UTC) (Expand)
xenophyle on January 28th, 2005 02:27 pm (UTC)
amen corner
I think it's a matter of respect. Look at it this way: if I copied and altered another writer's fic, it would be plagiarism. It's not illegal in the case of fanfiction. But, it's unethical. I'm not sure about the legalities here, but the same ethical principle applies.

I'm right behind you on this one, Pato!
patosanpatosan on January 29th, 2005 05:11 am (UTC)
Re: amen corner
Thankies!