Game Designers are Authors!
... Actually a self-evident statement. But unfortunately this has often been doubted. Be it is the case that courts inadequately familiar with this matter equate game rules with user manuals. Or be it that in 2012 it was questionable to the managing director of the German association of games publishers (then "Fachgruppe Spiel e.V.", since 2014 "Spielverlage e.V.") that game designers can be originators in the sense of the German Law of Intellectual Properties (UrhG) and classified them as "suppliers".
The SAZ has issued a public special edition of its SAZ-Zeichen on this subject, in which two specialist lawyers take up all arguments regarding the copyright problem, dealing with it in detail and clearly stating their position.
Download as PDF: SAZ Points No. 5 "Games and Copyright Protection"
The opinion of the games publishers caused a violent counter-reaction among game authors and the interested public. On a petition organized by the SAZ on change.org, almost 5,000 supporters subscribed to the requirement to recognize game designers as authors and the SAZ as their negotiating partner. A detailed documentation of the full case, you find on our German website.
Unfortunately, nothing has changed in the attitude of the Association of Games Publishers, even though its members explicitly document the authorship of the game designers for their works in their license agreements.
The SAZ will therefore continue to work on a political level for a clear and universal recognition of game designers as originators and strengthen its role as a consistent advocacy. Subsequently, the SAZ was able to achieve some remarkable successes.