From other questions about intellectual property, it's my understanding that:

What about measurements of fictional worlds? Many games contain tabular data that describe how elements of the game interact with the rules. Does it matter if the quantities being measured have real-world units or not? For example, 1st edition AD&D has tables of weapon properties, such as length, weight, price, speed factor, damage dice, and armor class adjustments.

Assuming that I design my own arrangement and appearance, is fictional data covered by copyright (regardless of fair use)?

1 Answer 1


That is an interesting question that I don't think has been tested in an highly analogous case. There are a number of sci-fi works that posit elaborate systems of made-up facts about Dragon's Egg and Rocheworld. "20 km in diameter" by itself is not a expression protected by copyright, but as part of a highly creative system, it is protected. If these "data" were about the real world, they are not created, and copyright only protects creative efforts. Creativity can come in a number of forms, such as the sentence structure used to state an idea, but it can also be found in a system of relations between small expressions, like "20 km diameter", "67 billion Earth gravities", "7,000 kg per cc".

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