If you, like me, consider yourself to be a Trekkie and you keep an eye on the latest news surrounding the franchise, you might be familiar with a recent claim by one ‘Anas Abdin’, regarding Star Trek Discovery and plagiarism. His tweet is below:
I tried to prevent this as much as possible but CBS treated me in disrespect. I am officially going to court against CBS' Star Trek Discovery https://t.co/tN238MFKzb#Tardigrades #StarTrek #gamedev #indiegame #indiegamedev #pixelart #adventuregames pic.twitter.com/ddiBrOKhol
— ˹Anas Abdin˼ 🌿💦🐛 (@AnasAbdin) August 21, 2018
I am not necessarily without sympathy here, as at first glance there do appear to be some striking similarities, however it’s worth asking – as it always is in these situations – if things are as they truly appear. This is not to call Anas a liar, but there have been many occasions throughout history where two similar ideas have emerged, independently of one another. There is also a question mark around whether or not CBS (the studio that is producing Discovery) would have been aware of a game that as of this point is sitting in the ‘green lit’ stage on Steam and not yet released. It is also certainly not something that exists very high in the public consciousness, in any way shape or form.
There is then the wait – we’ve had an entire season of Discovery, much of the break between seasons, yet only now have these allegations come to light. Why wait so long before moving forward with legal action? The only prior note I can find is that at one stage, Anas – back in November 2017 – had spoken to a gaming site and at that point, wanted only to continue with his game without fear of retribution from CBS – now, it appears things have changed. Why?
Beyond all of that, we have a number of ‘usual suspects’ who are egging Anas on to pursue legal action, despite the potential for some serious consequences for Anas himself. A quiet more toward some kind of settlement – where neither party would perhaps be required to admit to any kind of plagiarism – might have worked in his favour. The louder the chorus for courtroom drama, the greater the risk to Anas. He is being pushed into a situation where, in the tangled, challenging world of copyright and law, he would be expected to show in minute detail that CBS had copied his ideas. Failure to do that would ruin any chance of a settlement and leave him liable for some huge costs. I therefore have serious doubts that the crowd of Discovery haters who are trying to encourage legal action are acting altruistically. In fact, I know they act out of spite and hatred toward the show, rather than in Anas’ best interests. I cannot imagine these same people saying a word back during the Deep Space Nine/Babylon 5 controversy. They are quite happy to see Anas potentially take a fall, in the hope that it might dent Discovery’s reputation and, of course, Discovery won’t be going off-air because of this. I have to wonder if they actually care at all for him in all of this.