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Thoughts on Playby (Faceclaim) using deceased persons


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I woke this morning to my staff having an interesting chat regarding face claims of deceased persons. We have at least one person on our site who uses a deceased person for their face claim. I don't know this actor/model so I had no idea that was the case.

 

Three of my staff don't like this though have only just raised it randomly considering the person has been using that FC for the past six months. One suggested it should be a rule and it got me thinking what the community at large think about this. It actually doesn't bother me at all but I find I am much more open minded than the rest of my staff in general.

 

Do you have rules against people using a face claim of an actor/singer/model that has passed away?

"You tie the knot, I'll start the fire."

~ The Amity Affliction

 

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This has been discussed recently. In my opinion if Disney can do it, so can I.

 

Reference picture:

 

Rogue-One-Star-Wars-Carrie-Fisher-Prince

 

Reference thread.

 

 

To be more fair to your staff they are being respectful in the wrong way. I agree that using an actors RL pictures (those really horrific paparazzi ones) is horrific. But if you are using a person that has an actual presence, images, movies etc. There isn't anything wrong here. Are you going to burn old magazines because the actor died? No you're not.

 

Also, I mean are you REALLY going to re-cast Snape just because Alan Rickman is dead? They had to Recast Dumbledore because he died before the end of the series but OG Dumbledore is still best Dumbledore. You kind of have to think of it in those terms. The characters "playby" or "faceclaim" is just the visual representation of the character in someone's head. If it fits:

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The only valid reason I've ever heard not to use a deceased model/actor/etc as a PB is if that individual, while alive, expressed that they do not want their image used in that way. 

 

Otherwise, I agree with @Morriganthat your staff are being respectful in the wrong kind of way. 

 

Continuing to utilize an actor/model's images after their death memorializes that individual, and pays tribute to their legacy. To me, that seems far more respectful than to sweep them under the rug and limiting the ways in which they can be remembered. Using their image post mortem exposes them, and therefore their work, to younger generations and other individuals who may not have been familiar. It expands the reach of their legacy. 

 

The only semi decent argument I've ever heard against utilizing deceased as PB's is that 'they aren't alive to say they don't want to be used' - and LBH that's a stupid ass argument. Betty White has had 91 years to declare she doesn't want her image used for character likeness (I suppose 30 if you want to get semantical but lbh roleplay existed before the internet and writers used actors/models to represent their characters even back then). Does anyone really believe that outspoken, Queen Badass B of a woman wouldn't have already said something if she had an issue with it? Personally I find the very idea that she wouldn't have infantilizing and offensive. 

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I strongly disliked the rule the first time it came up and I dislike it now. But personally that's because I dislike sites with rules like this. Basically the bulk of my opinions are included in the original thread and my new ones feel very inflammatory so I won't say them. But basically, it's an odd development of forum rp culture that I don't know where it originates, but would be totally fine with the rule going away. It doesn't really make sense. To extend it logically, would that mean it's disrespectful to watch movies with deceased actors? Or works of literature whose authors are dead? 

Edited by Veino

Aure entuluva! Day shall come again! - The Children of Hurin

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@Morrigan Thank you for posting the other thread. I admit to not checking and it was an interesting read.

 

Indeed I don't find using PBs of people that have passed on disrespectful and do think it is a way of honouring them. I have no intention of adding a rule that disallows that and I also believe the PBs are just a representation. I've not restricted PBs and don't enforce even having one so it doesn't make sense to me to limit this in any way.

 

Thanks for the feedback.

 

Also Leia!  ❤️

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"You tie the knot, I'll start the fire."

~ The Amity Affliction

 

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2 hours ago, Flahme said:

@Morrigan Thank you for posting the other thread. I admit to not checking and it was an interesting read.

 

Indeed I don't find using PBs of people that have passed on disrespectful and do think it is a way of honouring them. I have no intention of adding a rule that disallows that and I also believe the PBs are just a representation. I've not restricted PBs and don't enforce even having one so it doesn't make sense to me to limit this in any way.

 

Thanks for the feedback.

 

Also Leia!  ❤️


It wasn’t well titled either. Took me a hot minute to find. But of course. It’s always an interesting conversation. The only people that I’ve ever seen request people not use their image are models trying to make a living. 

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6 hours ago, Veino said:

I strongly disliked the rule the first time it came up and I dislike it now. But personally that's because I dislike sites with rules like this. Basically the bulk of my opinions are included in the original thread and my new ones feel very inflammatory so I won't say them. But basically, it's an odd development of forum rp culture that I don't know where it originates, but would be totally fine with the rule going away. It doesn't really make sense. To extend it logically, would that mean it's disrespectful to watch movies with deceased actors? Or works of literature whose authors are dead? 

 

It originates from using playbys like River Phoenix, Brittany Murphy and Heath Ledger. Those stolen from us in their youth and prime and so it makes some people feel dirty to use them. But not gonna l ie:

clueless movie tai GIF river phoenix GIF why so serious joker GIF

 

 

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popular actors and musicians have had their likenesses merchandised, recorded, reproduced, put on posters, deepfaked, modeled after in games etc.  I doubt most actors are closely watching the rp community to say that their faces can't be used to be honest. its not like us rpers are trying to make money off of them, which is what would be more likely to create red-flags in the entertainment industry.

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As long as it's not disrespectful, I think it shouldn't be an issue... but every situation is different. It's usually better to stick to user-made OCs for this reason, rather than real people.

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51 minutes ago, Orion said:

user-made OCs for this reason, rather than real people

 

Can you describe this better?

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As in character designs that have been drawn and/or described by the player, rather than using existing people. Usually adopted designs from DA/TH/etc are used for this.

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That makes better sense but doesn’t resolve the issue. Just because my character is an OC doesn’t mean I want original artwork. I cast my characters like I would if I had full creative control of a movie of my RP writing. I don’t want Final Fantasy Whispers from within. I want Hunger Game of the rings! The most epic story ever told!!!!

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Some people have a preference from using real life images. some people have a preference for anime-style faceclaims, claims from video games, or other artwork. then there is a separate faction that is more likely to use their own art and descriptions exclusively.  Not everyone wants to spend time on carefully designing a character using new art or writing when they already have a 'perfect' face in mind. This is a facet of different rp cultures/styles. A user-made version definitely doesn't fit for all players or all rp cultures. Some forums I have heard of even have faceclaim rules like no artwork/cartoons, realistic pictures only and the like.

Edited by Kazetatsu
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I honestly hadn't thought about the ethical side of PBs, I'd just used whatever picture online I could find that seemed to sum up a character, though that is not always a photo of a person. But I think I am a bit weird.

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17 hours ago, Morrigan said:

I cast my characters like I would if I had full creative control of a movie of my RP writing. I don’t want Final Fantasy Whispers from within. I want Hunger Game of the rings! The most epic story ever told!!!!

 

I wanted to say that I am glad there is someone else who does this!

 

Morrigan and Dragon basically both expressed my opinions on the matter in their first posts in this thread. I think that it is perfectly reasonable to continue using a deceased person's face after they've died unless they have expressed that they do not want to be used while they were alive. We don't stop watching movies that contain people in them who are deceased, and footage of actors after they are deceased can still be inserted into movies, etc, so why should it be a concern with roleplaying?

 

Personally, unless a character was already in play when their face passed away, I don't use the face if they've recently died (we mourn big name stars like friends, and I think it's a respect thing) but that's more a personal opinion than anything else. Hell, on our site right now we have Max von Sydow and Michael Clarke Duncan both in play, both of whom have passed away. MVS just last year and MCD in 2012 I believe. These are the best faces for these characters, and it's allowed.

 

On 6/24/2021 at 6:50 PM, Dragon said:

Betty White has had 91 years to declare she doesn't want her image used for character likeness (I suppose 30 if you want to get semantical but lbh roleplay existed before the internet and writers used actors/models to represent their characters even back then). Does anyone really believe that outspoken, Queen Badass B of a woman wouldn't have already said something if she had an issue with it? Personally I find the very idea that she wouldn't have infantilizing and offensive. 

 

We should really just base our opinions of the world off "would Betty White have objected to this". That woman is a treasure. Also I can confirm this fact. Before I began roleplaying, I would often cast my characters in my novel and/or my fanfiction using celebrities. Granted, I've been RPing so long that it was people like Chad Michael Murray who were cast, but that's neither here nor there I suppose. Having a visual is exceptionally helpful.

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