-eBay Customizers-
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-eBay Customizers-

Posted in Custom Workstation

Hey guyz,

If you havent heard yet, there's a lot of customs on ebay thats being pulled. Which is a really bad sign for us that sells customs on eBay -_- anyone got any news please let us know and post it here. Now im afraid to put up my custom -_-..

~Gj

Posted by Gee_jays_Customs
on Tuesday, May 22, 2007
User Comments
greymonk -
Sunday, May 27, 2007
Yup when I had Chopperkeys, a uhem, competitor was making really cheesy knock offs and selling em for what I was selling em for, people would get them and they'd fall apart, and they'd contact me thinking they bought them from me. Once a guy even started making molds of MY SCULPTURES and selling them painted up differently. I got his auctions yanked, and sued him. The money I got from him bought my van and GPS system. (back before GPS' were a few hundred bucks heh...)

Sometimes people are just jerks. They'll seize any opportunity to make a buck off your efforts, and because people are the way they are, Large companies have to flex thier copyright muscles a lot to protect thier property. Imagine a business that made bootleg Marvel t-shirts, sold them for half what marvel has to sell them for to cover their overhead, and there was no law in place to protect Marvel from them. Additionally there has to be a line drawn somewhere or things will get out of hand very quickly. I remember when MP3s were new and the Music industry turned a blind eye at first because they didn't think they would catch on, or last. Combine MP3s with the internet and within hours Millions of dollars in revenue were being lost by the music industry. Now, I have no love for the record labels but many artist who had lousy deals ONLY giving them royalties on sold albums really lost out. It was a mess and some of you are old enough to remember the Napster stuff.

Truth is, when I make a Korg from another figure, I am still making an image that belongs to Marvel Comics Inc. I have justified it based on a few things: 1) I had heard that Marvel viewed the customizing scene as good for business. 2) I doubt Marvel or Hasbro plan to make any of the mods I've done and plan to do. 3) I'm not mass producing them and rarely make a profit on them. Heck my last Black Panther (robotic arm & leg) didn't even sell at all. 4) I bought the figure and can do with it as I please. If I want to have Gene Simmons pee on it and then I sell it on eBay it's my right, I purchased the figure, and a Marvel Legends figure doesn't come with a single use license like software does. If I make a profit on it after it has pee on it, then it's Marvel's loss for not thinking of that, they cannot legally keep me from selling it for more than I paid for it. 5) I'm a private citizen with a hobby, not a business.

Next comes the simple fact that if Marvel was going after Modders, they'd come after sites like this too, and they'd come after my auctions because at the very least my feedback rating makes me look like I've sold tons of the things. They haven't even sneered at me yet unless they are somehow magically keeping people from bidding on my items, which would be quite a trick!! I still hold to my belief that someone has decided to eliminate the competition and they went right for the best guys first. (no offense to anyone else!)
VariablePenguin -
Sunday, May 27, 2007
I've ratted people out on eBay for stealing my pictures and item descriptions a few times. It's very irritating to try to sell something and then have 4 clone auctions pop up. This is mainly in the electronic area I've had this problem.
DrSean -
Sunday, May 27, 2007
Because people suck. How about these theories:
-New guy sees a figure he's made too, but won't be able to sell for nearly as much because he's unknown and his doesn't look as good. So he removes his competition.

-Bidder is losing the auction by a lot and figures if he can't have it, nobody can.

-Random person has something against the customizer.

-Loser at Marvel feels like he should flex his copyright muscles and randomly complain about customizers.

people are ass holes sometimes.
Shinobitron -
Sunday, May 27, 2007
Well thats a good sign. I'm glad to see that nobody decided to be a jerk toward your auction.
VariablePenguin -
Sunday, May 27, 2007
Because people suck. How about these theories:
-New guy sees a figure he's made too, but won't be able to sell for nearly as much because he's unknown and his doesn't look as good. So he removes his competition.

-Bidder is losing the auction by a lot and figures if he can't have it, nobody can.

-Random person has something against the customizer.

-Loser at Marvel feels like he should flex his copyright muscles and randomly complain about customizers.
ToymakerB -
Sunday, May 27, 2007
To avoid any confusion, my listing wasn't removed by Ebay. I took the listing off myself.
DrSean -
Sunday, May 27, 2007
But why would people do that?
VariablePenguin -
Sunday, May 27, 2007
I agree with the "jerk" theory. I makes no sense for them to pull some of the figures that have been pulled. Most are second string characters but you see A listers up all the time!
Buzzy Fret -
Sunday, May 27, 2007
sounds like a somebody on Ebay being a jerk to me. If Marvel, DC, Dark Horse, etc., were complaining about trademark infringment then they'd have all the Custom auctions involving a trademarked character deleted not just a select few.

That's a problem with Ebay - all someone has to do is complain about an auction and Ebay will zap it immediately without even contacting the auctioneer beforehand. I had that done to me when I was selling a guitar amp all because a guy that built custom guitar speaker cabinets used the same name for his cabinets as the guy that built the guitar amp I was selling used - Thunder Tweak. Their little girly-slap party had nothing to do with me, I was just selling a used, and very cool I might add, guitar amp. But Ebay blasted my auction into oblivion anyway.
Jin Saotome -
Sunday, May 27, 2007
What was the auction # that got removed? It's the first one since about a week. I want to figure out the connections.
greymonk -
Friday, May 25, 2007
I agree, although it does take a few days for the eBay police to act on a complaint. Also the complaint has to be filed on THAT auction so if they are going through singling out an auction here or there, something besides Marvel seems to be at work here.
Shinobitron -
Friday, May 25, 2007
His got yanked yet 110 still survive. I still smell something fishy here.
greymonk -
Friday, May 25, 2007
drat! So auctions are still getting yanked, this is not good at all. My panther closes tomorrow and it has no bids so it's probably under the radar. The Korg is getting a lot of looks but no bids yet so maybe it will survive. Either way, I don't know whether to be insulted or relieved that mine haven't been yanked!
greymonk -
Friday, May 25, 2007
As a matter of fact, I did do car keys too. I also did a 3D ram head for the truck guys, I still have the mold for that one. Came in 3 styles, solid black plastic, realistic paint, and in pewter. Car keys can be tricky though because of the "wings" where the key head slips in. Most motorcycles never had those so it was easier to do bike keys. But yeah, man we're figure modders ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE!!!
Henchmen4Hire -
Friday, May 25, 2007
I think TMB's Hercules got pulled from Ebay, I was bidding on it and now I can't find the auction >_<
Shinobitron -
Friday, May 25, 2007
GM that is one of the coolest ideas I have ever heard. Is it possible to make key heads for cars in this manor as well, cause I'd kill to get a Decepticon logo for my Sunfire!!

Thanks now you have we wishing and wanting
deadeye -
Friday, May 25, 2007
LOL - Nightmare you just went UP in my cool book, man - fight da power

And you said 3 big dudes in a suit came visiting?

This like a Federal Agent version of the 3 headed knight from Monty Python and The Holy Grail?

Did they say "nee" in between sentences?
deadeye -
Friday, May 25, 2007
I was one of those guys attacked! I used to make Klingon BetLeH's - the crescent blade weapons (the best I might add!) out of 6061 T6 Aluminum, acid etched, hard anodized, and sharp as a tack. Paramount came after me so I patented the item as a farm implement (a wheat thresher). I also did phaser kits and rank insignia, some uniform baubles you couldn't get elsewhere, head pieces for Klingons etc. Paramount was closing people down left and right, they'd send IP reps into a convention like the ATF sends agents into a gun show. It was insane times. Paramount would offer cash money to people to narc each other out, we're talking a couple grand a piece too, and it was turning mother against child.

So I got tired of fighting, sold my patterns and molds to someone with more energy and moved on to making Aliens Figures...hahaha, I would do drool coming out of the mouth, thoe whole nine yards. Even made a face hugger that was bendy so you could put it on your face and wear it around. That was very popular! But, alas they came after us too. SO I stopped doing that and made stuff for the Goths (My daughter is a HUGE goth fan). So I got some cool plastic that turns to powder in sunlight, and started casting vampire teeth I sculpted to look like they were ripped out with pliers (Got the idea from Blade) and sold those for a while in little tombstone shaped plastic boxes I sculpted and cast in plastic. Then I saw everyone with those dadblamed zen gardens all over thier cubicles, and I got so fed up with those, I bought 100lbs of Black casting sand, and sculpted and cast some little tombstones, made some tiny roses and got some plastic skeletons, and created a Cemetary zen garden (the Zenmatery). I sold them with a little pick and shovel I sculpted and cast in cold cast bronze. (Still ahve the molds for that stuff!). I also took some Ferrofluid (a magnetic liquid) and cast reverse polarity rare earth magnets into plastic crosses. died the Ferro fluid blood red and if you poured into a pitri dish, and held the cross near it, the "blood" would move away from the cross as if it was repelled by the holy icon. LOL! The vamps LOVED that stuff until I was ordering so much ferro fluid the FDA came to my door wanting to know what I was doing - lmao!

So, then I had Chopperkeys, which I created, copyrighted, trademarked and patented. Got sick of keys and sold the biz. Now I mod figs for a hobby and I'm more passionate about having that yanked from me than anything I've done in the past. You know guys (and gals!) It was the COMICS that taught us all to root for the underdog!! Have they stopped to think about who they are messing with?!

This is why I want to be in business with this guy - not only a technically groovy sculptor but a mold maker and ideas factory to boot

The Ferrofluid blood trick could also be used for making a custom prop from John Carpenters THE THING
I could see that really selling well at the horror conventions I sell my Zombies at

I can vouch for his chopper keys being absolutely sweet! and I wish I had one for the my custom Chopper - (when I had it)

And I so love the Gravestone idea did you take any pics? man you and I HAVE to do that again and make a Vamp figure to sell with it

And I've just totally redesigned a vampire too - I see our first collaboration forming
Gee_jays_Customs -
Friday, May 25, 2007
nice!

~Gj
greymonk -
Friday, May 25, 2007
Google it. I was a locksmith. For like 10 years. I specialized in Motorcycles because keys are often hard to find for bikes. Especially Harleys which have at last count 143 possible key blanks (before they went to the tubular keys). I got tired of seeing sweet custom bikes with a rediculpous looking key sticking out of the ignition - made the key head look 4 feet wide on a bike with a nice theme! So, I made keys that I "Chopped" the heads off of, and sculpted a design to replace it. I sculpted dragon heads, wolf heads, skulls, naked ladies, you name it and made molds of the sculptures I did, then cast the key blank right into the "head" of the key. This way when the key was sitting in the bike's ignition, all that stuck out was the head I designed. So if you have a cool bike with a skull paint job, you only had this skull where the key would be at. I did most of this in plastic, just like BA does with heads but I branched out into metal using pewter and polishing them to a high polish. I also got into plating the metal so I could chrome, gold or silver plate things (I'm working on getting to a point where I can Chrome Plastic!) I did a couple of custom keys for some of the build offs on TV, got some in biker magazines, did a tribute key to Indian Larry who died (It was his face on the key) stuff like that. I got sooooooooo flippin sick of keys though I just couldn't take it anymore and sold the biz. In fact, that reminds me I still have hundreds of pounds of key blanks to unload, I think I'll start doing that on e-place heheh!! Great way to raise capital for figure modding!!! well that's enough about me...heh sorry guys didn't mean to hijack this thread!
VariablePenguin -
Friday, May 25, 2007
Those are the most awesome stories I've ever read here!
Gee_jays_Customs -
Friday, May 25, 2007
what is chopperkeys? ^_^

~Gj
greymonk -
Friday, May 25, 2007
Ferro fluid is not expensive at all but it stays liquid as in you can't cast anything with it, but in liquid form died red it looked like blood. (especially since it's a sort of brownish color to begin with) FerroFluid is used to graphically demonstrate the magnetic waves from magnets. (hey I thought we were all nerds here? am I alone?!)It will shape itself in response to the magnetism and show you what the actual magnetic waves look like. It's cool just to goof around with in and of itself. However, when exposed to reverse polarity magnets, the stuff was repelled by the magnets, and actually moved away rather than being attracted to the stuff. (like it normally is) so I could take a puddle of dyed ferro fluid and make it move away from my plastic cross (with reverse polarity magnet skillfully cast inside of the cross) and so it made it look like I had a puddle of Vampire blood that would "run away" from the cross when I held it near the liquid. It was a real treat for the vamp fans, but yeah, usually a lab will get the stuff in like 10 ounces max, I was buying gallons which made them figure I was maybe experimenting with some sort of magnetic death weapon or something. The FDA was concerned that I was putting the stuff in capsules, which was such a great idea that later I did put it in vending machine bubbles just to watch them roll around the table when I ran magnets under the table. When I sold the Vampire blood, it came with a Pitri dish, and the blood itself was in a test tube. I should also say that if you aren't using a reverse polarity magnet, you MUST keep ferro fluid in a container because once it gets to the magnet that it's attracted to, and sticks to it, there is NO GETTING IT OFF THE MAGNET!!

The FDA agents were more than amused when I showed them what I was actually doing with it, although they warned me about Red dye #3 (I explained I was using a chemically neutral red pigment for plastic and they were satisfied), and I sent them away with thier own kit. They were in my kitchen all of about 30 minutes, mostly playing with the magnets and ferro fluid. You can get it at most chemical supply or science outlets, and it's just a blast to play with - just don't forget to work on your figures too!
Henchmen4Hire -
Thursday, May 24, 2007
Oh noes! He may be mis-using our precious ferro-fluid! Let's get 'im boys! xD Sounds cool though! How expensive is it to cast stuff with ferrofluid?

Off-tangent:
The only time I've had actual government agents come to my door was when one of my neighbors caught me sniping the gangsters on the streets (with plastic BBs at relatively low velocity so there's no mess, hard enough to hurt like hell though!) that like to write all over the walls and reported me (to someone, I thought the cops, didn't think the feds would be brought in since neighbor knew they were plastic BBs). So obviously I hid the rifle at a friend's house for a while. Two days later three big dudes in a suit come knocking on my door to ask some questions. I guess they thought I was a terrorist?

So in the end, all they had to go on was one report from a wierd neighbor (dude really was wierd, not "credible I guess", un-cooperative "witnesses" (people on the street and other neighbrs that may have heard shots in the night), and no firearms of any kind found in the apartment (I let them search, I had nothing to do that day and I wanted to see the look on their faces when they smelled the horrible smell of 5-day old trash ).

But I digress...any excuse to tell that story xD
greymonk -
Thursday, May 24, 2007
I was one of those guys attacked! I used to make Klingon BetLeH's - the crescent blade weapons (the best I might add!) out of 6061 T6 Aluminum, acid etched, hard anodized, and sharp as a tack. Paramount came after me so I patented the item as a farm implement (a wheat thresher). I also did phaser kits and rank insignia, some uniform baubles you couldn't get elsewhere, head pieces for Klingons etc. Paramount was closing people down left and right, they'd send IP reps into a convention like the ATF sends agents into a gun show. It was insane times. Paramount would offer cash money to people to narc each other out, we're talking a couple grand a piece too, and it was turning mother against child.

So I got tired of fighting, sold my patterns and molds to someone with more energy and moved on to making Aliens Figures...hahaha, I would do drool coming out of the mouth, thoe whole nine yards. Even made a face hugger that was bendy so you could put it on your face and wear it around. That was very popular! But, alas they came after us too. SO I stopped doing that and made stuff for the Goths (My daughter is a HUGE goth fan). So I got some cool plastic that turns to powder in sunlight, and started casting vampire teeth I sculpted to look like they were ripped out with pliers (Got the idea from Blade) and sold those for a while in little tombstone shaped plastic boxes I sculpted and cast in plastic. Then I saw everyone with those dadblamed zen gardens all over thier cubicles, and I got so fed up with those, I bought 100lbs of Black casting sand, and sculpted and cast some little tombstones, made some tiny roses and got some plastic skeletons, and created a Cemetary zen garden (the Zenmatery). I sold them with a little pick and shovel I sculpted and cast in cold cast bronze. (Still ahve the molds for that stuff!). I also took some Ferrofluid (a magnetic liquid) and cast reverse polarity rare earth magnets into plastic crosses. died the Ferro fluid blood red and if you poured into a pitri dish, and held the cross near it, the "blood" would move away from the cross as if it was repelled by the holy icon. LOL! The vamps LOVED that stuff until I was ordering so much ferro fluid the FDA came to my door wanting to know what I was doing - lmao!

So, then I had Chopperkeys, which I created, copyrighted, trademarked and patented. Got sick of keys and sold the biz. Now I mod figs for a hobby and I'm more passionate about having that yanked from me than anything I've done in the past. You know guys (and gals!) It was the COMICS that taught us all to root for the underdog!! Have they stopped to think about who they are messing with?!
Henchmen4Hire -
Thursday, May 24, 2007
...or they agreed with the comic companies not to comment on this current situation. o_O;;
Shinobitron -
Thursday, May 24, 2007
One thing I realized in this is that Toyfare was not familiar with this Dalhoff guy. Toyfare, as everyone knows, is part of Wizard entertainmenmt which is a very powerful figure head in the world of comics, toys, etc. . , thus they know their stuff and the people in the industry. having such a large Co not familiar with some is a good sign since they deal with Marvel, DC on an everyday basis.
greymonk -
Thursday, May 24, 2007
Jin: Thanks buddy, I fear all this Infringement scare is going to make us all lose Black Arachnis!!! God Bless him, he offers a very valuable service that would really hurt if he's gone!!

Dedi: My friend, count on me for anything I can do to help sir! and thank you most kindly for the kind words!!
deadeye -
Thursday, May 24, 2007
I'm UK based too man and have noticed this too

I am new to putting anything of mine up on Ebay - I've only ever sold stuff to people I've targeted thru Flyers left on counters at local comic shops/Alternative shops/Games shops and sold my stuff directly to them and have built up a good base of 50 regular customers to whom can afford £25 - £50 (approximately $50 -$100) customs

I've still to sell them on Ebay - as I was distrustful of this whole Ebay thing
Its kinda like a Conan the Barbarian Vs Magic thing, Lol
But this recent development has made me even more reticent to do so
Tho I really am not surprised at this happening

I'm old enough to remember the GARAGE KIT Boom of the late 80s/Early 90s where sales from homegrown talent making anything fans heart desires were crushed by Film Studios and DC Comics especially which even closed down certain Fansites and fanzine magazines like Gotham Gateway
They mobilised their Lawyers on some Batman, Aliens and Terminator figure Customisers - who were producing HIGH QUALITY WORK compared to the CORPORATE TAT

Precedent set others followed suit on several other license/copyright infringements

Now under copyright law - you CAN make a certain number of an item thats a copyright of a Huge company - AS LONG AS that net profit of total sale revenue won't hurt their official sales

As my Good friend Greymonk says what we are doing IS good for their business as we buy up Fodder in their figures and also are hooked on their comics - putting megabucks in their wallets
So really the balance is maintained

Tho this does sound kinda official - I still am of the opinion that this is a rival customiser, possibly even someone that works at Marvel as an intern and has used his companys resources to research specific intellectual property and copyright infringement - but not totally

The very fact that there hasnt been a blanket ban of all Marvel/DC/Other customs on Ebay and only certain types of figures - justifies this theory

Someone is specifically eradicating competition here and have targeted specific individuals who pose a threat to them


And Greymonk - tho you arent a customising heavy hitter like Jin, Kyle, Geejay, TMB,VP etc
Your original sculpture work is awesome my friend
I love your work and would go into business with you making original stuff at the drop of a hat - such is my faith in your work

I hope if this Dalhoff guy does get found out to be a rival customiser - that he gets a karmic dose and then some
Wings -
Thursday, May 24, 2007
This is exactly why I've been shy of eBaying my customs in the past. Here in the UK there are hardly any autions but a few recently that had gone up have disappeared after a few days. It sucks that when someone is selling their 'art' to give a fan the character they really want, they're shot down for it. And anyone who is reporting these to get rid of the competition, well I shake my fist at thee!!!
CplHicks -
Thursday, May 24, 2007
Yup. That's how you have to do things now a day.

ToymakerB -
Thursday, May 24, 2007
So we list like this (Example) Up for auction The greek god like guy that looks kind of like the guy those comic book guys created, but isnt. its my interpretation of a character that may sort of resemble the aforementioned character created by guys who make comic books whose name begins with "M" wink wink. $5.00 shipping. thanks for looking.
Jin Saotome -
Thursday, May 24, 2007
Still no answer from either emails sent. My suggestion, continue as normal, don't sell your fodder yet. We've had incidents like this before, last one I remember was like 4 years back? And we're still going on EBay. There are still 118 auctions for 'Custom Marvel Legends' still active at the time of me writing this and I haven't received word of any more being pulled. That's a good sign. I'm not sure why certain people were targeted and I'm trying to find out. Any information I get will be passed on immediately. At this point it would be good to take certain precautions that your auctions are not targeted by limiting the amount of copyrighted material on them. Examples would be professional artist-drawn images of Spiderman or directly copied company Marvel logos, stock photos from comic pages, comic headers, or any other work that you didn't draw or create on photoshop yourself. State early in the auction that your figure is a custom, fan-made figure and not one that is produced from Marvel or Hasbro. One thing companies don't like is the possibility that someone can mistake your work for a mass-market product they sell.

Best of luck to every customizer out there, on Ebay, and I'll report any information I receive about this situation.
Custom J -
Thursday, May 24, 2007
Here's a couple of questions:

If it is illegal to sell customs because of the trademark infringement then why is there a listing format on Ebay in the first place?

Does anybody know how many customs got cancelled this week?

The only reason I ask this is because there are still a 107 custom marvel legends on ebay this afternoon, so it could not of been a Marvel Co. purge.

Does anybody know of any customizer that was recently booted off Ebay?

Again I only ask this; as this happened back in 2000-2001 on Ebay. It was later found out to be a customizer in Figi that was kicked off ebay and decided to screw with the rest of us that were selling back then when there were only 25-30 customs listed per week, (Not Custom Marvel legends, this was Custom DC). A lot of us back then were suspended for 30-90 days from listing but it all worked out in the end and so will this.
Gee_jays_Customs -
Thursday, May 24, 2007
I agree with shins, if it wasn't for customs I wouldn't be buying like 4 planet hulks, 4 colossus, and trying to get my hands on as many bullseye, moonknight body types as possible, so I guess in a way both sides are getting the benefits, well except right now since "supposedly" marvel is pulling out auctions....if it is true...-_-

~Gj
greymonk -
Thursday, May 24, 2007
exactly, I have no dilusions about ever being good enough to make a living at this. I only finance my next mod with sales from the previous one (assuming they sell at all!) But the big guys have a lot to lose and I hope this works out for them. Part of it is because I enjoy the thrill of seeing my auction actually get a bid and part of it is because I enjoy seeing theirs break records with sales. Most of the figs we mod aren't being made and aren't planned on being made. I do a lot of the zombie stuff but I choose the figs (with the exception of the hulk) that name brand toy companies won't be making because of the lack of mass market appeal. Maybe what Marvel should be doing is making offers to Jin and K&L to hire them as sculptors for the toy companies instead of trying to stifle thier creativity and deprive thier fans of quality depictions of the comic characters. I suspect my auctions remain untouched because A) they have no bids and B) they aren't great.

Yes I had to sculpt the head for my most recent black panther, but it looks nothing like his comic face, (hey I was watching Lethal Weapon 3 at the time I can't help that it looks like Danny Glover!! ) but if Jin or Kyle or GeeJay had chosen those figs they would be spot on. I have no right to capitalize on the Marvel universe, but I try to offer a decently done depiction of something Hasbro doesn't offer. Since I emulate what you guys are doing, I know this is pretty standard across the board.

Hasbro makes it's money from me buying thier figs, Marvel makes it's money from me cause I buy thier comics for reference material and get hooked on the story lines. We are depriving them of nothing in the way of intellectual rights except in licensing. Traditionally one would have to be licensed to make an image of a comic character and the licensing is super expensive, usually a per figure price and the more popular (Spiderman fantastic 4 etc.) the more the $$$ costs for the license. It is likely a lack of royalties or license fees that has spawned this recent attack, and that's where the companies lose out because Jin probably doesn't have a license to make a Black Bolt figure. It's not cost effective for Jin to buy a license to make one $200 figure. Copyright and Royalty laws state that the IP holder has a right to ANY and ALL potential profit gains available from the use of thier Intellectual Property. Little bean counters and Lawyers will try to calculate the lost revenue from a figure sale (even a one off!) and they will actually BILL the infringer for the estimated loss of revenue starting with the licensing fee which is probably in the tens of thousands of dollars. Naturally Jin hasn't those kind of resources, so they will threaten lawsuits to obtain that money if the person continues depriving the IP holder of the anticipated revenue. It's all about greed, plain and simple the sad part (when it's not on our side) is that it's completely thier right to do this. Always has been.

Now to add insult to injury, a copyright is only good for 75 years AFTER the death of the holder. However, a corporation is considered by the US Federal government to be an Immortal Person therefore, the corporation ONLY dies when it is dissolved. I don't see Marvel Inc. "dying" anytime soon, so the property will NEVER be public domain. 300 years from now, Spiderman will still be trademarked and whoever tries to put on a spiderman play, will be paying through the nose for the rights to produce it unlike putting on a Shakespearean play in this day and age. When you hear someone saying that corporations rule the world or have ruined it for everyone, you might think now less like that person is a conspiracy theorist.
Shinobitron -
Thursday, May 24, 2007
Not only is this gonna lower the comic sales but I can see a the legends bought for fodder going down the crapper as well. I know that I sometimes use up 4 figures for some customs, thats $40.00 I will no longer we putting into the Marvels wallet if this is, in fact, them doing this.

Heres another question if I sell a Planet hulk figure perhaps, add a few weapons to it does that make it an illegal item? If they can take this off not only is hurt eBay but it also makes it possible for them to start ending all MArvel related auctions on eBay. Is Marvel that jealous of people making extra money off of their items that they would start doing this. If it doen't end at that who's to say they won't start to end vintage comics and figures the possibilities are endless at this point.

I do know this however, I work for an NFL team and (not hard to figure out if you check my area) they tried to get their items pulled off of online auction and websites and various stores due to the sheer fact of greed. They lost the battle and were given this statement by the NFL:

"Any items purchased by an individual or company become property of such here in. As such the wefare of these items is that of the owner and can be used as the owner ses fit"

After that we had another instance where people were buying our teams patches and putting them on coats and other items again they tried to stop them and we got the same response plus this:

"Any item purchased from our teams can be used to enhance another item."

This allowed individuals to buy patches, photos etc make them into plaques or what not and resale them.
I'm thining we are getting into the same situation here and I hope for the most part the results are the same.
hawkeye -
Thursday, May 24, 2007
Yeah but while you are violating the copyrights your not compeating with Hasbro. The $50 you make isint hurting them at all(If anything some of it was rolled into other Hasbro products). I agree with Greymonk, people just causing trouble to entertain themselves. BTW, I forget what site it is but you can get an email adress that says anything in the middle(ie mailto:Hawkeye@FigureRealm.com). The real sad part is that it will deter some of the bigger names that have a lot to loose. The email adress isnit active^^^
greymonk -
Thursday, May 24, 2007
Well now the bottom line is that we technically ARE violating the copyright of Marvel and DC when we make figures that either didn't exist in 3D form or were poorly done in our opinions. However, it is up to the Intellectual Property owner to enforce the copyright. This is done AFTER the powers that be decide weather such enforcement is good or bad for the company's sales. It appears that Marvel had been ok with it in the past but for some reason someone at the company has changed thier mind (an over-eager intern maybe?) and so this has caused quite an issue.

I remember when Paramount began cracking down on Star Trek fans, getting fan sites closed and zapping the prop makers (I was one of them!) and then the fans got fed up and low and behold, Star Trek died. (Seen any Star Trek movies recently?) So, if this is truly Marvel deciding that custom mods being sold on eBay is not ok, it is well within thier right to do so, but in my unsolicited opinion is bad for business and I expect they will feel it in the shockwave that ensues from boycots, protested movies and the like. Marvel and DC have always had more sense than Paramount Pictures so I suspect this will all work out ok in the end. Especially with the big dawgs like Jin and K & L fighting the battle for us, but what a roller coaster ride this is! I can't wait for the next issue!
greymonk -
Thursday, May 24, 2007
That looks like an eBay cease and desist letter. That certainly looks like the real deal there. So is marvel NOT cool with us making mods? If not, I'll never touch a marvel comic again.

oh well my auctions are still up but probably because there are no bids on them. Or it's just a matter of time before I get yanked or who knows? Sure sounds like someone was specifically targeting those few auctions though. However, VeRO is a real deal I've used it Before to protect my copyrights.

This will be interesting to see unfold!
Wonder***Woman -
Thursday, May 24, 2007
Its sad when you can't even make a buck without gettin in trouble and loosing it. eBay does need a better system! or else we're gonna have to e-mail the company and ask if we can sell a copyritghted character every dang time we wanna make a buck with a cool custom! And besides the a-holes that get people yanked should just suck it up and deal.So what maybe someone made a cooler custom than you someone will still buy it, but I mean come on people! GROW UP!ebayers need to learn that there is a posibility that someone is better at something than they are, but we also have to realize that unless we all let tem know nothing will be done! Do any of you know the saying "Actions speak louder than words"?Well we should do something about it cuz I doubt settin around e-mailin people is gonna solve a lot!WE need a plan! Something to make ebay a better place to buy sell and trade!!!!Now I know that may seem realy far fetched but if we had a plan to make a non-violent way to let ebay know how we feel I think we can get something done!!!!!

So anybody got ant ideas?
Jin Saotome -
Thursday, May 24, 2007
Hey, I've been keeping tabs over the course of the day. Mucci got an email from Ebay while others had their auctions removed without anything. Here's a copy-paste of his email.



K&L customs, Eagle, and some others had their auctions pulled but that's it. There's still 118 'custom marvel legends' auctions still up on Ebay and nothing else was yanked off after them. I called up Jesse Falcon this morning after hearing the news and asked if he knew anything about it. He said he didn't know mailto:dalthoff@marvel.com so it wasn't someone from the east coast offices, possibly here on the west coast maybe. As far as Jesse has heard nothing about Marvel or Hasbro's stance on custom made figures has changed. Jesse did mention Marvel is aware that fan-made figures help with character/product intrest so they're not a bad thing. He suggested to contact dalthoff himself. So I whipped up another email account, as not to draw suspicion to my regular one, and emailed both him and the protectmarvel asking them if A: anything had changed legally about making custom figures, and B: why those auctions in particular were pulled. I'm waiting for a reply from either sources and will have answers for you all when I get them. So far neither has replied to my emails so I'm just waiting. I'll call ToyFare tomorrow and ask their opinion, since they contract out people to make them custom marvel legends and would have knowledge about the legal implications of paying actual money for custom figures.

You know I won't let customizing disappear without some sort of fight, heh. Don't jump to conclusions just yet tho.
VariablePenguin -
Thursday, May 24, 2007
I had a theory that the auctions that looked too professional were being pulled, but then a really great Black Bolt I was watching actually finished, so that blows that theory.
Gee_jays_Customs -
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
I totally agree man, cuz K&L's customs was like up to $100 bucks and both of them got pulled....and also other high sellers, which was weird...you should make an eBay program...lol the pros and cons...^_^

~Gj
greymonk -
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
See this is exactly the type of clues I'm talking about. The items yanked are specific because the eBayer has to pick the auction that will be yanked. Therefore, the auctions are indeed targeted. Someone out there probably didn't like how extremely well done Cable and Winter Soldier were, and they wanted to sell thiers without competition so they had those auctions yanked. Mark my words, watch in the next cycle (eBay cycles are 10 day increments) there will probably be another Cable or Winter Soldier put up, and it won't be the quality shown in the auctions that got pulled.
greymonk -
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
Well we do violate copyright laws by making customs but, Marvel has the final say on weather it's bad for business or good for business. I buy more comics now trying to find source materials for figures no one else is making than I ever bought before. So, I'm turning into quite a comic book junkie and Marvel is moving comics through me. Additionally, it's not good for business for Marvel to make all the figures we want to see because some of what we want doesn't appeal to the mass market so it's not worth the money for Marvel to finance Hasbro to make a figure of Black Panther in robotic Arm and Leg. Therefore, Marvel would view what we do as a good thing, not a bad thing. This is represented in the fact that Marvel doesn't send us cease and desist orders and Toyfare features Kyle and other modders in the magazine.

eBay, doesn't view that at all. They are purely concerned about lawsuits and ensuing settlements since they have such deep pockets and a lot of people hate them, they are a prime target for lawsuits. So they have a kneejerk reaction to it in the form of yanking an auction without an appeals process. This is a valuable weapon for dishonest people that want to eliminate competition on eBay. I have been through this more times than I care to admit, and the next few weeks on eBay will be rather ugly. Paranoia will ensue, people will start complaining about anyone modding and getting auctions yanked all over the place. This will go one until the following two things happen:

1) Modding has slowed down considerably and

2) the eBay police discover that the person that initiated the complaints is also selling modded figures. Once they realize that (and they have to realize that on thier own!) they will stop yanking auctions.

eBay will never tell you who complained against your auction. They also will not go back and check the categories to see if you go back and put the auction back up. They will wait for another complaint to be issued against you. Once you, in retaliation complain against the one who started it (and I can promise you it's another modder or a figure seller!) they will then compare the original complaints to the list of people that had auctions yanked. When they realize that this tactic was used to eliminate competition, they will cease the process and ban the originator for 90 days. But it will be a long and extremely frustrating process. You'll have auctions yanked, lose customers because they get scared off, and some of us will get banned a couple of times all in the process. This will suk like you wouldn't believe but we will emerge victorious, just don't give up.
Shinobitron -
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
What really weird is that Cable and Winter Soldier aren't even that big of MArvel names but fan faves. IF anyone should have been pulled (no offense VP just using you as an example) it should have been me for my Iron Man and VPs Punisher. If it was a true crackdown every Marvel custom figure would have got the boot.
VariablePenguin -
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
Agreed. It is like I've mention somewhere else: What is the difference between us making and selling customs and an artist at a convention selling sketches for a character he doesn't work on?
greymonk -
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
Addendum: here's how to find out who's likely doing it. eBay will pull the auctions that have been complained on. watch the areas in the next couple of days for someone you've never heard of putting up thier mod of a custom that got yanked. chances are, that's the person that made the complaint. sad to say it but stop and think of this scenario: joemediocre customizer says waoh, I made a cable that I want to sell, but Geejays is better than mine, so I'll file a complaint with eBay that says copyright violation and get that auction pulled. eBay does it. Now, joemediocre customizer can freely put up thier cable and there's now no competition. In addition, eBay has issued a staunch warning to geejay (just an example here GeeJay nothing personal!) threatening that if GeeJay does this again they will lose eBay priveleges for 30 days. Now, GeeJay ignores it and puts up his Cable again, joemediocre files another complaint and Geejay gets banned for 30 days. Now joemediocre has a competition free existance on eBay for 30 days.

Chances are, the auctions that got pulled had bids on them and were likely at a high bid price. start writing down the high bidders on your auctions and keep it handy. There are ways to make contact with those people and let them know what happened. IF modding figs was a copyright violation, Marvel would be all over us and toyfare wouldn't do articles about customizers. however, eBay doesn't care, they are so afraid of lawsuits that they won't even hear your case, they just yank it and this whole thing is a major tactic for some pogue that wants to play dirty. When Iw as making my keys I had auctions get pulled that I OWNED the copyright on and held patents for, eBay wouldn't give me a chance to plead my case until I reached powerseller status. Sorry this is going on friends, I hate to see something like this happen. It really gets my dander up!
greymonk -
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
hang on guys, I've been eBaying for a long long time and I'll tell you what's going on here:

eBay doesn't police itself. It relies upon other eBayers to police it for them, you know...rat people out. Now, traditionally people will turn in a competitor's auction because it has a rule violation in it, like a web site mention, or url, or shill bids (having buddies bid on your auction to run up the price)etc. when someone reports an auction for a copyright violation, eBay doesn't investigate at all, they don't want to take a chance that someone has truly violated a copyright and therefore, they yank the auction. SOMEONE is trying to eliminate you/us as the competition and is getting eBay to yank our auctions. That in plain English is exactly what's going on. I sure hope it's not someone on FR!
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