Once in a while I see the Worldbuilding site.

But if answers from this site literally become integrated into books, games, movies, apps and so on, how does the user of the answer avoid any claim to copyright infringement?

  • 5
    You should also check Worldbuilding.SE's Meta to see if they have any discussions on the subject of using material from the site in other works, and/or other discussions related to copyright infringement. Examples of such Q&As there: Legal status of works utilizing question or answer concepts, Using content from answers? (Minor note: content contributed as of May 2, 2018, is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0, not 3.0.)
    – V2Blast
    Jan 20, 2022 at 3:37
  • 3
    @Rob The proposed duplicate seems ill-suited: it's a huge list of changes to the CC licensing UX on SE. While the actual answer is related to the licensing, and maybe is even hinted at somewhere on that page, that hardly comes close to answering the question.
    – Ryan M
    Jan 20, 2022 at 6:24
  • @ReOpeners The dupe is an Announcement, there's no requirement for an answer, or that a user offering Feedback (an answer) provides a so-called "answer" to an Announcement. When you get news you don't answer the news, though you might have an opinion or feedback to offer. -- If any portion of the Announcement is unclear the last sentence shouldn't be, if you need legal services they won't be forthcoming; if there's something you don't understand or feel is unclear that's the place to leave feedback, or ask a new question - comments here won't be associated to there without a dupe link.
    – Rob
    Jan 20, 2022 at 17:26

1 Answer 1


Use of Stack Exchange content elsewhere

Worldbuilding offers ideas and "[c]opyright does not protect ideas". Even with the best of legal teams, in most cases I doubt that there would be anything to go after, legally.

A user would have a valid complaint if the license is not being followed, such as if their exact words were used without crediting them.

However, most users are unlikely to have even thought about this. How would you know someone was copying you in the first place? What do you expect to get for your work that you essentially donated to the internet for a chance at internet points?

Use of copyrighted content on Stack Exchange

A lot of copyrighted content lives on in posts either because of fair use or that the copyright holder just doesn't know or care that their content is being used.

But sometimes they do care. The copyright holder can submit a DMCA takedown and their content will be deleted from the site if it's deemed a valid claim by Stack Exchange employees. This is rare but it does happen. For example, Post deleted due to DMCA notice on Stack Overflow. However, because it's done through deleting or redacting posts, it's unlikely that a regular user would notice a takedown. Even moderators wouldn't be involved with this process (except maybe to help users find the right way to submit a claim), though they would be able to see the takedown happening if they were looking in the right place.

  • 3
    "I'm not sure that moderators would even be involved with this process" – They would not; copyright claims are handled by the company's legal department (though mods may end up removing such posts for other reasons, such as plagiarism), per our copyright policy (which has been readded to the Terms of Use after having been accidentally removed).
    – V2Blast
    Jan 20, 2022 at 19:31

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .