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  1. #1

    Default Creating an App for a Fan Forum


    I'm developing a website/forum based on a popular Fox TV serie. This is mainly a fan site. We discuss the news from the show, amont other things.

    I which to create a free iOS app for this website. Something similar to Tapatalk, but customized to my website image, colors and functions.

    I wan't to know how much content from the TV show I can include in my app. The website use some image of the show for it's design and we never had any problem in the last 10 years of existence. I know it's not the optimal use, copyright wise, but we go with it. I feel the app is different from the exposure and the approval process of the App Store. The problem is also that a lot of fan sites such has mine exist, but not so much app.

    I guess it would be a problem to use sound or video from the series. The same goes for images. But could I use a "fan art" from the show as the app icon, if this same fan art is the site logo? The most important question is related to the app name. If the show name is [yyy] and my website name is [yyy][zzz].com, can I use the site name as the app name?

    In essence, what is the risk and the difference between a fan website and a app based on this website?

    Thanks a lot,

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2010

    Default Re: Ios App for a Fan Forum

    Technically nothing. Both are infringing and the fact you got away with one doesn't mean the other is acceptable.
    Building apps around copyright material probably exceeds what you can get away with under the fair use review provisions as well.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Ios App for a Fan Forum

    Thanks for the quick reply.

    In that case, let's say the app only use the name of the website as reference and no other copyrighted material (own design and such), is the name only can cause problem? In other words, if the app doesn't cause a problem, is the fact it's linked to the site can cause a copyright problem, other than adding visibility to the website?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2010

    Default Re: Ios App for a Fan Forum

    Names are never protected by copyright. If you abuse their trademarks you might run into problems. I'd be sure that you make it clear you are not affiliated or sanctioned by whoever's IP dealing with. Nothing can predict if the added feature of an app will wake up a sleeping giant with regard to existing copyright/trademark violations.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Ios App for a Fan Forum

    Thank you for your answers. It's really helpful!

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