Proposed app ideas invite copyright violation?
The 'fine print' of the contest mentions several rules, but then the App Ideas page immediately suggests violating them. Specifically: "Appropriate Copyright and Licensing for Third Party Intellectual Property, including Church-owned or licensed property, is required. Do not use music which has been licensed to the Church."
Many the ideas listed are inviting copyright violations. For the various "name the song" idea suggestions, the songs and their words are copyrighted by the church or other groups, and use requires permission. The suggestion of using photos to identify general authorities would require copyright permissions for the Church's photos, unless you happen to have taken your own images of all the church leadership. Temple identification could be done if you happen to have photos of temples you personally took, but few people have good photos of temples and anyone would need to get permission from the church if they want to use the chruch's photos. Apps to view historical church talks would need permission to reproduce them or would need to take steps to avoid infringement. A few other suggestions also hint towards using content owned by other groups, which is something very dangerous from a legal perspective.
While the intention is good, some of the suggestions are very bad ideas due to legal consequences. It would be unwise (at best) to use the church's photos of general authorities, or the church's temple photos, published conference talks, or words from the church's songbooks. These things are all protected by law and require written permission. --Bryanwagstaff (talk) 13:56, 22 June 2014 (MDT)
I think it is important to clear this up and make sure that people understand what they can and cannot use from the Church. These ideas and others that I've had or heard from others, would require photos of General Authorities, temples or other things copyrighted by the Church. Guidance should be given on what to do. Without being able to use pictures from LDS.org, many ideas won't work and the quality of the apps may be lower because they cannot include official and professional pictures. Is it possible we could create and small library of photos that people could use in their apps? It would help developers create better apps. It looks like members could use media found here as long as the apps apps are non commercial https://www.lds.org/media-library?lang=eng Dustin Hill
The media library is licensed for personal use, church use, and certain non-commercial use. The contest has no requirements about non-commerical status, and even so, anyone releasing an app 'for free' by itself is generally not enough to satisfy the legal requirements for non-commercial use. Just because you don't make money doesn't mean it is non-commercial. I added a short "rules reminder" section on the main page. I tried to word it as a gentle reminder rather than raining on the parade. --Bryanwagstaff (talk) 21:58, 22 June 2014 (MDT)
I don't believe any of the ideas are "bad". Some might not be easy or fast, but "easy and fast" aren't requirements of the Contest and its longer term goal of "creating something worthy" -- of getting good, gospel-oriented apps into the marketplace.
Generally, anything created by someone else requires permission to use unless it has passed into the public domain (due to age) or is available under some type of free license. Since these will not be Church-owned apps, use of the Church's media requires permission from the Church or from the underlying copyright holder (much "Church" content has simply been licensed to the Church and may be available directly from the copyright holder). Great temple pictures other than those in the Church media library exist and can be found for license on the Internet. LDS-themed artwork other than that in the Church media library exists, also found on the Internet. Some developers have hired illustrators to create what they need, often at very reasonable cost.
Independent apps and programs exist which access scriptures, conference talks, music, genealogical data, and more. RootsMagic started somewhere. It's just back to the General Rule: use of someone else's content, whether from the Church or anyone else, requires their permission.--Swtbentley (talk) 16:03, 26 June 2014 (MDT)