Here at Fan To Pro we want to help YOU become more aware of other projects out there for progeeks like yourself. Well just as we were discussing how to do this, New Media Rights fell into our lap. It’s legal assistance for gamers in convenient video form, and they’ve got a fundraiser campaign! Check it out below!
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
New Media Rights launches free video series to educate independent game developers.
San Diego, California – Nonprofit New Media Rights released a free video series Nov. 9 aimed at educating new and independent game developers on business and legal issues.
The video series, Legal Assistance for Game Developers (LAGD), is part of a Indiegogo fundraiser campaign that New Media Rights launched Nov. 19 to fund a second season and help fund New Media Rights’ free legal assistance services. LAGD features advice from major figures in the industry like Edmund McMillen of Team Meat, Chris Avellone of Obsidian Entertainment and Gabe Newell of Valve Software.
New Media Rights also received overwhelming support from the Reddit r/Games/ community. A link to the videos reached number one on Nov. 12.
New Media Rights Assistant Director, Shaun Spalding, said “When we started LAGD, we thought it was strange that there was almost no well-organized video content about how to avoid legal and business problems in an industry where almost everyone starts out with lots of passion but little money for expert advice. And then we started contacting developers for interviews about how legal issues have actually affect them, and we were inspired by the passion and outpouring of support the community gave us.”
New Media Rights staff has volunteered their own time to record and conduct interviews with 16 figures in the industry including developers and journalists. The goal of the Indiegogo campaign is to raise $16,000 to help expand the scope of the video series for a season two. In addition, the funds raised will be used so New Media Rights can continue to provide free legal assistance to artists and entrepreneurs and defend them from legal bullies.
“We’re able to provide the same services as a lawyer that charges $300-$500 per hour for free to creators. The Internet has drastically increased our ability to share ideas and art, but those creators have to find a way to navigate the same complicated maze of laws that the traditional, corporate media companies spend millions of dollars to comply with,” Spalding said.
The Indiegogo perks for the campaign include postcards, copies of the game SpaceChem and the movie Bush League and a special Lifetime Achievement Award that includes an engraved 300 baud modem. “The old analog modem is a symbol that represents the humble beginnings of the Internet and the rise of unfiltered information and unfettered creativity. It is the reason why New Media Rights exists,” Spalding said. “And it’s much cooler to show off in your office than an engraved plaque.”
The top 3 donors over $10,000 will have an office holiday named after them in addition to the engraved modem. Spalding said “We’ll name a whole holiday at the New Media Rights office after you. We’ll wear party hats. You’ll get photos of the NMR staff celebrating your gracious patronage. We may also send you a cake. The cake is not a lie.”
Since 2007, New Media Rights has helped defend creatives like Anita Sarkeesian of Feminist Frequency from bullying and wrongful content takedowns. Sarkeesian said, “I contacted New Media Rights when one of my videos was unfairly targeted for removal from YouTube. They were incredibly supportive and helpful and if it wasn’t for their advocacy work, I would probably still be stuck in YouTube’s autoresponding feedback loop.”
New Media Rights has also partnered on policy work with Electronic Frontier Foundation, Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University and Government Accountability Project to ensure that regulations on independent creators don’t limit their ability to create and share their work.
Spalding said, “A free and open Internet empowers people to freely share their ideas, and we help people because we want to preserve that equality of opportunity. Not only does that create a space for more innovation, but it creates a place for innovative thinkers, like mashup artists, to thrive.”
In addition to fighting against Internet censorship, New Media Rights has fought against laws that would compromise the free and open Internet like the Stop Online Piracy Act. Past battles New Media Rights has engaged in include, filing comments against the AT&T / T-Mobile merger that would have decreased mobile Internet access and innovation. New Media Rights also testified before the U.S. Copyright Office about users’ rights to jailbreak their mobile devices. NMR was later mentioned by name in the U.S. Copyright Office’s rulemaking decision on jailbreaking.
In addition to the Indiegogo campaign, New Media Rights is also looking for ideas for collaboration from like-minded organizations as well as ideas for new Indiegogo perks.
Legal Director of the Government Accountability Project Tom Devine said, “What is particularly impressive is that New Media hasn’t stayed on the sidelines, content merely to report a story. It has been on the solidarity front lines with those of us fighting for stronger free speech rights and more transparent government. NMR is in the trenches helping individual citizens express their free speech rights, many times helping filmmakers and journalists tell important stories that would otherwise go untold. We recognize that the demand for the type of public interest legal services that New Media Rights provides is growing rapidly throughout the world. We support their work and value their contributions to making legal services available to those who need it most.”