New Terms of Service

A while back, a new Terms of Service for was published. It's not really that different from the old terms, it just has different language saying almost the same thing.

This caused a lot of people to misunderstand what changed. I got tired of having the same conversation again and again, so I wrote this page to replace my involvement in this bullshit.

Keep in mind that this is in no way an official response, and I'm just some random dude that hangs out in their Discord. For the official word on this, check out Community Pulse for September 2023

Why can't we use real brands anymore?

You never could. Trademark law has been a thing for hundreds of years. King Henry III of England made trademark laws in 1266, so that one could easily identify what baker made what bread.

This is not something new that The CitizenFX Collective, or Rockstar, came up with in September 2023. That's absurd.

The only thing that has changed is that there are a lot more resources available to enforce now, so either they enforce, or they may become liable for not enforcing.

What is a trademark?

A trademark is a specific symbol or word used to identify the origin of goods or services. "Ford" is a trademark, for example. You can not use a trademark without the permission of the owner.

Together with the specific colors or shapes used to identify goods and services, such as the particular red color Coca Cola uses, this is called "trade dress". You can't use other people's trade dress, or they might sue you for infringement.

So I can just yank the badge off the front of the car?

No. That might take care of the trademark, but there is still copyright.

Copyright covers creative expression fixed in a tangible medium. An example of this is the actual design of a vehicle. Not just the curves of the bodywork, but the whole thing, engineering and all.

You can have vehicles "inspired by" real-world vehicles. GTA has always had this, and GTAV has a bunch of vehicles that are just different enough from real cars to be legally distinct designs, but still close enough to invoke the "design feel" of the original. The Adder being based on the Veyron is a classic example of this.

You can get away with cars and props "inspired by" the original so long as they are not legally substantially similar. For more concrete advice on where that line is drawn, you would have to talk to a lawyer.

Why is FiveM being singled out?!

Probably because horses are not copyrightable, so RedM is safe.

But no, seriously, FiveM is not being singled out in any way. Copyright enforcement is a thing all over the internet. For example, have you noticed that there are no Porsche models on That is not because Porsche make boring vehicles, but because they very aggressively defend their copyright.

This is not new, nor is it novel. Just because you haven't thought about it before, doesn't mean nobody has.

Why should I care?

You do not want to tango in court with Ford Motor Company or Coca Cola Corporation. They have more lawyers than you. They also have more lawyers than Rockstar. They spend a lot of time defending their copyrights and trademarks.

More pressingly, however, is that you might get your server shut down by, and we would all hate to see your cookie cutter generic RP server go offline. Great loss to us all.

Can't Rockstar just license all the vehicles?

Firstly, if they did, the license would probably not be transferable to you.

Secondly, this would cost a boatload of money. Rockstar are in the game to make money, and this investment would not see any real return. Ever.

Thirdly, you can only license copyrighted designs from someone willing to license it to you. I doubt many vehicle manufacturers will jump at the chance to see drive-by shootings out of the windows of their vehicles.

Why can movies have real vehicles in them, then?

Those movies are using the vehicles designs in a transformative way. When you stream a car model, you are just distributing the design as is. This is not transformative enough. If Ford could stop people using their vehicles for illegal or immoral activities in movies, they would.

The next time you watch a movie with car chases, keep an eye out for badges and logos. Most of the vehicles that get smashed, shot up or explode have their badges removed. Once you see it, you can't unsee it.

If a vehicle is being portrayed in a positive light, then it's more likely that the car manufacturer paid for a product placement. Your GTA RP server will never be enough positive light to even get a response if you email Ford about that.


Ah yes, every time there is a change that impacts more than three people, this is the rallying cry.

Firstly, this isn't a change. The enforcement might become more aggressive, but copyright violations were always against the rules. That you were breaking the rules for a long time doesn't change anything.

You don't need a real-world car and real-world sneakers to play. Especially role play is about making shit up and having fun in your imaginary world. Bringing real-world brands into that might actually be damaging to the experience for a lot of people.

But what about ...?

Yeah, I feel like this page will get a bunch of updates. *sigh*

©Demonen - Published 2023-09-17