Okay, I read over the top ten myths about copyright and it reminded me of a question I've had for a while, but have been too lazy to research and answer. I was hoping I could get folks who posted here to tell me what they think the correct answer is.
The main character of my comic, Rob, works for the student newspaper and part of what he does for them is a comic strip (I know, I'm so original). This comic strip's main characters are all characters from video games (no, not a sprite comic, I'd be drawing them from scratch) placed in a foreign environment. I've wanted to draw some strips from his strip (sort of like when "Billy" draws family circus... only without sucking), but I've been held back because I don't want to violate the obvious copyrights. On the other hand, the profusion of sprite comics and presence of video game characters in other webcomics makes me think that this isn't something the owners of the copyrights are going to care about.
Anyway, I was wondering what, if any, way can I do this? Is it parody? If not what do I have to do to make it parody (change names a la Bored of the Rings?, etc.)? Is it removed enough from the main subject matter of the comic to be okay? (i.e. It's not a comic about vg characters, it's a comic with a character who does a comic about vg characters, sort of like if the comic had a kid starring in a school play of the Wizard of Oz, at which I doubt that anyone would get upset.)
I hope that wasn't too long winded, but it's been bugging me for half a year and was thinking this would be the most appropriate place to ask.
I am Matt Oliver and I have approved this message.
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