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"GW forced Battlewagon Bits to desist its web sales..." Topic


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7,112 hits since 27 Mar 2007
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Gattamalata Inactive Member27 Mar 2007 5:00 p.m. PST

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Farstar Inactive Member27 Mar 2007 5:45 p.m. PST

Apparently not.

Of course, anyone found guilty of providing a service that GW should be providing but isn't is going to be food for the crows regardless. GW does not share, and success will be dealt with harshly.

(Of course, GW isn't alone in this behavior, as anyone watching WotC's handling of the OGL can tell you.)

Personal logo Extra Crispy Sponsoring Member of TMP27 Mar 2007 6:04 p.m. PST

Just for the record, GW is a small business. They're just the tallest midget in this hobby.

the Gorb Inactive Member27 Mar 2007 6:09 p.m. PST

@Skeptic – Of the 767 GW items for sale on Amazon, one is listed by Battlewagon Bits, the other 766 are listed by Acme Inc.

Guess who GW is going to visit next?

Regards, the Gorb

Skeptic27 Mar 2007 6:10 p.m. PST

Given their complex organizational structure, public-listing status, employment, and international dimensions, GW cannot reasonably be classified as a 'small business' …

Skeptic27 Mar 2007 6:11 p.m. PST

Oops! I'll delete while I can …

Salibaba27 Mar 2007 6:15 p.m. PST

I am confused – why would anyone want to buy GW products from Amazon from an unknown company for a price higher than the full GW retail price???

link

link

etc.

the Gorb Inactive Member27 Mar 2007 6:33 p.m. PST

Well, I'm not so good with UK phone numbers, but the number listed appears to be in the Bangor, Wales area.

Country code 44 is UK and 1248 is the area code for Bangor, isn't it?

Regards, the Gorb

the Gorb Inactive Member27 Mar 2007 6:42 p.m. PST

Found them:

acmecomputergames.com

Phone number matches the number given on Amazon.

Regards, the Gorb

Goldwyrm Inactive Member27 Mar 2007 6:44 p.m. PST

Why isn't this posted on the Battlewagon board?

TMP link

Space Monkey Inactive Member27 Mar 2007 6:53 p.m. PST

This all seems mighty shady…
So, are they saying NO ONE can sell GW stuff on the internet, no way, no how… not even Ebay… if they use a picture of it or describe it using any GW terminology?
Seems to me that once you own the damn thing you can take a picture of it and put the picture up wherever you like.
Would it be different if BWB sold all the parts as 'USED' rather than 'NEW'?

GypsyComet27 Mar 2007 6:59 p.m. PST

That is what they would *like*, sure. Their packaging would need to get a lot larger to include the "user license", though. If a "lease with no option to buy" is the wave of GWs future, I see more "disappointing" sales figures ahead, too.

Syrinx027 Mar 2007 7:04 p.m. PST

I would guess it has something to do with retailing their bits as opposed to individuals reselling their possessions.

I have not seen anything about how they aquire their bits. Are they buying from GW or individuals?

Gattamalata Inactive Member27 Mar 2007 7:11 p.m. PST

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Personal logo javelin98 Supporting Member of TMP27 Mar 2007 8:00 p.m. PST

The sad thing is that GW is too collectively stupid to realize that they're only hurting themselves. They make the same amount of money if BWB orders their goods or if some other FLGS does. This move only serves to Bleeped text off the hobbyists and alienate customers. Not that that's ever factored into their decisions before…

Space Monkey Inactive Member27 Mar 2007 9:05 p.m. PST

Seems to me like a backhanded admition on GW's part that their stuff is purposefully packaged in ways that are inconvenient for the consumer (the old 8 hot dogs/6 buns trick).

Personal logo nvdoyle Supporting Member of TMP27 Mar 2007 9:18 p.m. PST

As posted on the news item thread:

The word from BWB is: Same service, different ordering procedure.

So:

The bits sales are not going away.

The discounted full sets are not going away.

The only thing that is changing is that you can't buy with an online shopping cart…like every other non-GW internet retailer out there. Think Warstore, people.

Let's not throw dirt into BWB's grave quite yet, please?

No Name02 Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 12:16 a.m. PST

In the States they can do this. In the EU we have laws against restrictive trade practices so GW would not be able to do so.

link

Dewbakuk Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 12:42 a.m. PST

No, they can't stop you from photographing something you have bought and own, nor can they stop you using those images to sell the item. What they can do however, is refuse to sell to you ever again for breach of their trade terms. That's the threat.

No Name02 Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 1:17 a.m. PST

What they can do however, is refuse to sell to you ever again for breach of their trade terms. That's the threat.

If those trade terms are restrictive in the EU, then they are illegal and the fine is up to 10% of turnover for 3 years.

Dewbakuk Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 3:17 a.m. PST

True, however all companies state the right to refuse sales for any reason. The only time that can be disputed is in something like a monopolies investigation.

beausant28 Mar 2007 4:33 a.m. PST

Selling on the web, below GW prices is bad for the hobby. It might be good for the seller, but it is bad for the hobby. Game shops are good for the hobby as they promote the hobby and the play of the games. Internet shops do not. Internet shops give nothing back to the hobby. They do not host games. They do not run tournaments. They do not have painting lessons. Internet shops force the closure of gamer stores (which is why so many are closing). GW is shutting down Internet shops to increase sales in Game Stores. GW does not want to be primarily an Internet store. If they did, they would sell at a discount. GW wants to sell wholesale to game stores. The closing of Internet shops helps your local game store. If you want to help the hobby, support local game shops.

phililphall Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 5:01 a.m. PST

Well, I think someone should say: "You don't like it, haul me into court and we'll see who wins". The Dr. Mile decision in 1909 pretty much put to rest the idea that manufacturers could tell you how much and at what price you could sell a product they had sold to you. As for IP infringement by publishing a photo, I'm pretty sure it would only infringe if you used their photo of the item. If you take your own photo it isn't infringement. GW depends on the small retailer backing down. Time for someone to get some brass ones.

Gattamalata Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 5:44 a.m. PST

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Gattamalata Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 5:48 a.m. PST

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nycjadie Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 6:32 a.m. PST

This is nothing new. GW has been limiting online sales wherever possible.

The most shocking statement in the press release is this:
"We encourage other internet retailers who are doing the same thing, to also voluntarily remove IP protected images from their websites."

#1) Stating we sell GW products such as Box of Skellies $30 USD is not IP infringement. Placing a photo of a box of Skellies that you own and would like to sell is proabably not IP infringement (it might be infringement in the sense that there are more than one copy of the photo – for example the photo is fixed in the user computer RAM and on the webpage that the 2nd user brings up, which is technically two copies).

#2) If I was the lawyer for this retailer, I would never tell them to encourage others to do anything.

MaksimSmelchak Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 7:49 a.m. PST

Hi Guys,

This is pretty disappointing.

First they put Hobby Workshop put of business.

Then they moved on Neal at The War Store…

And now Battlewagon Bitz?

GW doesn't deserve my business while they keep edging anyone but their Internet and Mail Order businesses out of business.

Shalom,
Maksim-Smelchak.

No Name02 Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 8:51 a.m. PST

The only time that can be disputed is in something like a monopolies investigation.

I think you would find that restrictive trade practices are still illegal even in a non-monopoly situation.

Judging by the number of online retailers, I'd say they've either circumvented GW's diktats or don't give a damn.

The word I heard was that they tried it in the UK. Picked on a lad, whose dad happened to be a hotshot lawyer. A letter was sent in response and GW legal said, lets back off.

GW is shutting down Internet shops to increase sales in Game Stores.

I think it was to boost their own (non-discounted) internet sales and no it does not seem to have helped. I cannot really believe that the 'lets limit our customers options' theory of marketing, really works. On the other hand more choice should improve sales and if I were in charge of GW I would ask, 'what are those guys doing that makes them successful, lets copy them'. However I am not in charge of GW so my word counts for diddly squat.

GW is shutting down Internet shops to increase sales in Game Stores.

No, see my reasoning above. If we wanted events to promote the hobby then those events should be run with sales at them (in the UK we call them wargame shows). Ideally the GW games should be sold as a hobby you can play at home with friends – plenty of places to play then.

Aside from the pictures of books and boxes, the bits were all photographs. So I don't see how GW could have brought up the IP issue with the bits.

They can try anything they like, they just don't have to be right. I do not believe that photos one has taken of your own models is a violation of IP but I will have the chance to find out as GW has contacted me about some pictures on my site.

Gattamalata Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 9:18 a.m. PST

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No Name02 Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 9:22 a.m. PST

Don't they care about the consequences of their actions?

Indeed they do, they want to achieve their goals and so far (fairly much) they have done so.

When they wrote to me they claimed they had trademarked GW, in fact they had only applied for the trademark. Should a lawyer tell the truth?

Gattamalata Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 9:35 a.m. PST

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Personal logo javelin98 Supporting Member of TMP28 Mar 2007 9:38 a.m. PST

Should a lawyer tell the truth?

I'm pretty sure that isn't a necessary qualification, is it?

I jest, I jest…

nycjadie Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 11:45 a.m. PST

"Nothing on your site can be construed as a violation of IP. If this were the case, then GW would have to go after those fan sites with galleries of their converted and/or painted figures."

Actually, GW has the choice to go after whoever they want. Since they are not the government, they are not obliged to follow the equal protections clause.

Space Monkey Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 12:50 p.m. PST

So are they saying you can't have pictures of things made by them (GW) but owned and painted by you or are they saying you cannnot IDENTIFY them as such (not invoke the name of Games Workshop or their GW 'trademark')? Would it suit them better if you put up the photos of YOUR MINIATURES with a caption like, "Here are some miniatures I bought and painted, I haven't got any idea at all who made them."

No Name02 Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 1:37 p.m. PST

They say that such pictures break their IP, an example here

3vwargames.co.uk/extras.htm

No name mentioned so it must be the 'image' of the finished model that they are protecting.

If they don't like that (rather awful now that I look at it). They will really hate this one (I think rather nice)

3vwargames.co.uk/fantasy.htm

It has been mentioned but nothing further was said, just waiting for that phone call.

Javier Barriopedro aka DokZ Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 2:22 p.m. PST

For me, this has long gone the route of Excelsior Entertainment… I no longer care. Neither about what GW does and what their retailers allow the company impose on them for the "good of the hobby". Nor about GW or the defenses some poeple make about their arbitrary policy.

Phillip Forge28 Mar 2007 2:22 p.m. PST

What I have to say refers to England and Wales.

Using a photo from GW's web site or scanned from WD/GW book is illegal and does breach copyright. So GW are fully justifiable in asking internet traders to remove such images.

If you run an online shop in England/Wales then you are perfectly within your rights to take your own photo of the product and use that on the web site

Howver, one is not allowed to use GW models to sell another product. Sorry Justin, but you can't have pics of Bretonnians with your decals on them, even though you may have painted them yourself.

GW cannot refuse to supply online only retailers in England/Wales. EU regulations prevent GW from selecting who they want to supply.

What GW can do is offer slightly different terms. Online retailers must pay with their orders, real shops can have up to 30 days credit AND 2% discount if they settle within 7 days. How can they justify the difference? It is to do with credit risks; essentially a real shop has more assets than an online only retailer. But the trade terms can't be too different, hence GW have the same minimum orders for online and real shops.

Personally I agree with the basic GW argument that online only shops harm the wargaming hobby. These bedroom based enterprises that only sell GW items at 10 – 25% off RRP are not doing anything for the hobby long term. So companies such as Maelstrom Games and NU Gaming will never get my business and I would prefer if the law allowed GW not to supply these enterprises.

Despite being a discounter I actually have a lot of sympathy for BW Bits. Why? Well, because they are doing something different and offering a service that GW do not. The core of the 'GW Hobby' is modelling and BW Bits is great for us modellers.

So mixed feeling from me about the spoecific issues raised!

Phil

Space Monkey Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 3:21 p.m. PST

All this is starting to sound like Kevin Sembieda's mania for lawsuits over anyone so much as mentioning a Palladium product.

I still can't see how, if you bought and own and painted the minis yourself, GW has any rights to control your use of those miniatures! Even to the point of including them in photos of products you made/sell to impart scale information, especially if you didn't identify them in any way.

Gattamalata Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 4:57 p.m. PST

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nycjadie Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 5:22 p.m. PST

"I still can't see how, if you bought and own and painted the minis yourself, GW has any rights to control your use of those miniatures! Even to the point of including them in photos of products you made/sell to impart scale information, especially if you didn't identify them in any way."

There's a difference between taking a photo of a box top or contents of a box set and posting it on the web and taking a photo of your completed model and posting it on the web.

I haven't heard of GW going after people posting pictures of models on the web, which would be the intended use of the product.

Where it falls inbetween is in Justin's case, where it shows beautifully painted GW miniatures, using his own transfer designs, but in this case he also sells them on a website. Here you have intended use of the product mixed with commercial sales.

Big Miller Bro Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 6:09 p.m. PST

Say what you will about GW being good for gaming but they only care about The Hobby TM- not the hobby. And they could care two squirts less for the local stores – they care about the local GW store first and foremost. They tried near every dirty trick in the book to screw the local stores when they came to town with their own stores.

Personal logo nvdoyle Supporting Member of TMP28 Mar 2007 7:16 p.m. PST

Actually, GW has the choice to go after whoever they want. Since they are not the government, they are not obliged to follow the equal protections clause.

That said, isn't there something under US law that an IP holder must actively protect it, or lose it?

Gross simplification here, I know…

Personal logo nvdoyle Supporting Member of TMP28 Mar 2007 7:56 p.m. PST

I'm terribly sorry…no, no I'm not.

I'll buy GW at the cheapest legal prices I can find, because I'm all about maximizing the utility of my limited recreational dollars.

Just like GW is all about the maximization of their profits.

That's neither excuse nor condemnation; just simple economics.

But what about my local gaming store?

They don't hold painting seminars when I can attend, they don't hold games I want to play, they don't provide any service I can't get online. Conversion advice? Work In Progress, or Advanced Tau Tactica. Painting examples and advice? CMON. New products and everything else? TMP.

Space Monkey Inactive Member28 Mar 2007 11:02 p.m. PST

My local stores don't all concentrate on GW/Privateer/CCGs and seem to have a 'tournament' mentality about every game that gets played in the store.
Adding to that, they don't sell much outside of those lines… a little bit of Reaper at one of them.
I'm not going to find any surprises on their shelves… and I'm REALLY not interested in 'tournament' anything… I just want a friendly game… maybe a game demo or a painting tutorial… some good conversation that rises above min/maxing your army for the &%*#! 'tournament'!!!

I just might as well shop online… heck, just reading through Brookhurst's site feels better than shopping in my local stores.

RudyNelson29 Mar 2007 6:30 a.m. PST

It is no surprise that I have not stocked masses of GW since 1985 and none at all since about 1990. I have stated that in prior threads.

I am not surprised that GW does not allow official photos from box covers to be listed on the net. Use of those could be viewed as official sites. However, the use of individually painted privately owned, casting should not be regulated.

Are the paint scheme from the required GW guide for tournament use trademarked,thus limiting their use? If so this is a lot of money for trademarking fees and costs.

Regardless, I do not stock GW for these and other GW company policies.

nycjadie Inactive Member29 Mar 2007 8:33 a.m. PST

"Are the paint scheme from the required GW guide for tournament use trademarked,thus limiting their use? If so this is a lot of money for trademarking fees and costs."

These are copyrights, which cost nothing to obtain, but do cost money to enforce.

RudyNelson29 Mar 2007 9:29 a.m. PST

Nycjadie,I thought that it cost $20 USD for a copyright. Are photo copyrights free or different in the UK?

Personal logo javelin98 Supporting Member of TMP29 Mar 2007 4:30 p.m. PST

You know… if I was a GW lawyer hungry for more cash, I'd see the secondary market on Bartertown as a threat to sales of new product, and people there *are* using GW's IP in the form of names, etc. Time to fire off a cease-and-desist letter…

nycjadie Inactive Member29 Mar 2007 5:47 p.m. PST

Rudy:
I don't know about the U.K., but a copyright in the U.S. is valid at the point of creation. Of course, federal registration makes it much easier to prove you own it.

nycjadie Inactive Member29 Mar 2007 8:15 p.m. PST

My posts are disappearing. I posted here after Rudy and it's gone!

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