Followup: More on “Elders’ Crossing” Hoax

108

Nov 19, 2007

Posted by SueTLC
Uncategorized

A follow up tonight on that mysterious website we told you about earlier this week, that had rumors flying and fans buzzing about a possible sequel to the Harry Potter series called “James Potter and the Hall of Elders’ Crossing.” While this was officially debunked as a hoax and not an official book or film, The Scotsman reports this is a work of fan fiction by a man named “George Lippert, 37, a digital artist from St Louis, Missouri, who wrote it for his wife and sons, who are avid Harry Potter fans.” Stating that this is a 360 page story, the newspaper reports:

“Mr Lippert intends to release a chapter a day throughout December, free of charge, on his website.The computer-generated movie trailer for the book features Harry-Potter style theme music, thunder and lightning sound effects and icons revealing hidden passwords and clues leading to taster extracts from the “new” book.One chapter discusses the attempt to tighten up broomstick flying legislation for underage wizards and witches after some high spirited alcohol-induced behaviour celebrating a Scottish sporting victory in the heart of London.

Last week Mr Lippert said: “I am a little worried that people will be angry when they find out it’s not Rowling.”But I hope Harry Potter fans will enjoy reading it as much as I’ve enjoyed writing it.”

The paper says that reps for J.K.Rowling are “threatening legal action,” however this is no quote or any sort of confirmation of this supposed legal action given in the news report, and we will update with more on this when we can.





57 Responses to Followup: More on “Elders’ Crossing” Hoax

Avatar Image says:

Once again, we have a fan acting like an idiot. I’m pretty sure if he just put a big, bold disclaimer at the top it would be obvious to everyone that this was fanfic, and his problems would be solved. Duh.

Wonder how long til the RDR trolls show up…

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Pretty impressive so far!

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i think this will be a brilliant piece of fanfiction…as long as he stays un-paid i see no problem…

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As long as he puts up lots of disclaimers about how this is clearly nothing more than fan fic, he should be right, shouldn’t he? I don’t think I can deal with yet another lawsuit.

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All I know is that the website he made is amazing so I am definitely sticking around to read it!

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The website is great, but there are probably about a ton of copyright infringement issues…I would love to read the “book” – I miss the excitement of the series, and fan fiction has really died off quite a bit since July. It would be nice to have something to look forward to again. I’m sure that’s just what he’s after – bringing back some excitement. But he needs a disclaimer!! Please, oh please, not another lawsuit!

Avatar Image says:

He does have a disclaimer! The second password has a WWW fireworks that have a HUGE disclaimer and he says he will take down the site if they want him to!

Check out the entire site first people XD I already found all three passwords.

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Oh I’m sure he’s nice enough and I’m really interested in reading his work. I just think it’s stupid not to have a disclaimer right on the front page where it’s easily visible – because the site was obviously misleading a lot of people. I mean we all know that Jo has no problem with fanfiction, and I think if this guy makes it OBVIOUS on his website that that’s what this is that everything should be fine.

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I don’t see why Jo is threatening legal action—Isn’t this technically just a fanfic? If he posts a disclaimer, I see no reason why Jo would or could take any kind of action against Mr. Lippert. I for one can’t wait to read this thing.

Avatar Image says:

The only reason I could see Jo taking legal action is if she actually intended to write a sequel to the series…which I think most of us would welcome very much :)

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I don’t think Jo was considering Legal Action, just probably WB because of the trailer. It had the WB music and style. Jo hasn’t had a problem with fan fiction.

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There is a disclaimer so I don’t see how JKR can get pissed about this, it seems to me that all it is is fanfiction that is actually worth reading. I love HP fanfiction and I feel like if she took action against this one she would have to against all fanfiction. There are thousands of HP stories on FF.net that have been up for years. JKR should be happy, not only did her books encourage kids to read but to write as well. I personally have written HP stories and I always hated to write before. It is just fun! This guy isn’t doing it for money or anything, just for his kids. How can legal action be taken? I’m sorry but that is just ridiculous. If I don’t get to read this story because the poor guy gets sued I am going to be really really mad.

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There is a disclaimer at the bottom of the page that is linked from Leaky. Maybe he should move it up to the top and make it a bit larger just to make sure everyone sees it.

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I think part of the problem is that the disclaimer should be upfront. Not after a password or something.

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They can’t do anything to him, He isn’t charging anything for it, it’s just fanfic.

right?

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There is a disclaimer and it actually is just like the one here on leaky.

Avatar Image says:

Actually they could. Fanfic is not precisely legal.

Will they? They might ask him to change the site so it doesn’t look official (it is somewhat misleading and does look real, otherwise the question as to whether this is a hoax or not wouldn’t have existed in the first place), but they’re not going to prohibit him from posting his fanfic on the internet.

And if they do ask him to change the site, it’s WB’s territory. Their logo, their music. Just like the Hogwarts Castle in India. Don’t scapegoat JKR.

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Not very good with guessing the passwords…

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Wikipedia to the rescue. The site is pretty fun.

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I think JKR should sue him. It does not matter that it’s only fanfic, and he isn’t getting any money, she should still sue him because it’s a great way for her to get some more money. The more people she sues, the better, I think. It’s her idea, so whoever uses it should all have to pay including all the fanfic people, fan artists, people who write essays about characters, even fan websites should be made to give her some money for posting stuff related to her work. It’s only fair.

JKR is the greatest!

Avatar Image says:

Leaving aside the sillier postings, something does strike me odd about this website and its creator. If the man is a digital artist, then therefore he presumably does have a basic understanding of copyright laws in the US. Yet there is too obvious a reliance on WB materials (or “WB-like” if you prefer). Let’s face it, he could have posted his fan-fic without anything that remotely resembled anything trade marked or copyrighted by WB. He’s a smart man, but that’s like waving the famous red cape in front of the color blind bull: he must expect, even want, them to react.

So, creative and all that…but what’s his motive?

Anyway, I applaude his creativity…

And, we’ll just need to see what further information comes out. Not enough information available.

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Budb: I’m not sure if he’s trying to get WB’s attention as much as the attention of the fan community. By making it look official, every fan is going to know about this story and it will end up being very widely read. I jnow I’ll be checking it out.

Or maybe he just did it because he knew how cool his kids would think it. :)

Either way there definitely needs to be a big disclaimer on the main page, not behind a password lock.

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Kelly, perhaps…but we can agree he’s gotten WB’s attention too?

Just a mild curiosity as to the “why”...regardless, nice to see talent like that, isn’t it?

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Budb: Oh of course I agree he has. People thought it was official and inquired to WB about it, and I can’t imagine that he wouldn’t think that may happen.

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“I am a little worried that people will be angry when they find out it’s not Rowling.”

Of course they were going to find out it’s not Rowling. Duhhhhh.

Avatar Image says:

Does anyone have the second password? I keep trying to type it in, but it isn’t working.

Avatar Image says:

Hey, do he really need need a disclaimer when everyone know he is not JK, and the JK is the owner of HP ? nope.

If some people where stupid enough not to see this, bah…

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Emelie: While I never doubted it was fake, many people wondered if it was a project being put forth by Warner Brothers. The thing is masterfully designed and could easily pass as official. It definitely needs a disclaimer. The one on the front page makes it clear who HP belongs to, but it doesn’t explain that the owners of the site are not those people.

Avatar Image says:

Well he has put up a copyright notice naming JK WB and associated publishers… all and all I think the site is adorable so far

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Hint: Each password will help you find the next one.. and the second unlocks a beautiful disclaimer _

Avatar Image says:

Really, this guy surely never intented to create a hoax or pretend he is Rowling. When I looked at the site for the first time – before all this rubbish started – it looked like a very well designed fanfic site to me. And still does. I’m looking forward to reading it. If WB decided to really take action in this case they’d start being ridiculous.

Wake up, people, this is just fanfic!!! I can’t imagine that anyone above the age of 14 might have believed the site was made by Rowling. Because she clearly stated she WOULDN’T write anything about the Potter universe in the next years besides the Lexicon thing.

Leave that poor guy alone.

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The Scotsman is a piece of garbage.

The site’s “report” is absolutely unfounded! Their lead is about Jo “threatening legal action” when we heard nothing of the sort coming out of her mouth. And there’s NO proof anywhere to be seen in the “news”. Only examples of other sues made by Rowling, which is like apples and oranges, really, because those were completely well-reasoned. They’re trying to make Jo look like an ever-sueing control freak, which fans know is not true.

I really wish Rowling would mention this in the Rubbish Bin. This is not the first time The Scotsman made unsubstantiated (sp?) remarks about her…

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Luiz: Not to mention that it says in the website’s Disclaimer that they’ll take it down if they are asked to. Even if WB (as this would be their quandary) did want it off, they likely wouldn’t threaten legal action unless the request was ignored, as we know from past situations. So unless this guy has gained a McLarge Uberfan ego, I don’t think anyone will be threatening legal action even if WB does ask him to take down or change the site.

You’re absolutely right. I’m not worshipping everything the woman does (sometimes I find myself scratching my head a bit at her interview comments, especially), but one thing I DO love about Jo is how open she is with the fans. She doesn’t discourage their endevours unless it’s something blatantly illegal like the Lexicon issue recently. She doesn’t just allow fanfic, she seems to encourage it. She doesn’t try to clamp down on fansites (rather she’s awarded them), symposiums, or even Wizard Rock. To see people acting like she’s “Sue-happy” just bugs. I think some of the more Rita Skeeter-ish members of the media have taken up this idea. She’s a celebrity, and people like unsavory gossip. The books are over, so what’s there left to talk about? Possible lawsuits.

Stef: Everyone doesn’t know JKR absolutely plans no more Potter books. Not every book fan reads and watches her interviews. I think we all assume that most fans know the things us internet savvy fans do. That’s untrue. Most of the millions of HP readers out there aren’t us. They don’t keep up on all the news and they don’t do anything in fandom. They just read the books. So if a friend linked them to the site, they could easily believe it’s real.

Avatar Image says:

I absolutely LOVE it!! I’m a bit dissapointed it’s not from Jo, but I think it’s a great website! Fun, fun!!

Avatar Image says:

If J.K. were to press charges against this man who HAS stated that the story IS a fanfic, J.K. would have to press charges against me, some of my best friends, and millions of other Harry Potter fans who have taken up the hobby of fanfiction. So, logically speaking, she would turn a large majority of her fan base against her. If she doesn’t want people to write Harry Potter fanfiction anymore, she could send out a request for all of the fanfiction sights to take Harry Potter off of their list. Many other authors (Anne Rice, Amelia Atwater-Rhodes included) have done so.

Avatar Image says:

@budb – what no chocolate? I think the issue here is trademark not copyright. I’m not a lawyer but I slept in a Holiday Inn, so…I think the big issue with trademark is to sufficiently alter them. You can resemble the original trademark – you can’t copy it exactly. I don’t know how much difference is required to avoid infringing but this one is clearly not the WB.

Avatar Image says:

Mornin’, wondering! Too early for chocolate, tho I try to have some on hand in case postings get a bit too excited….the dark cholcolates seem to help the most when things get heated. Always appreciate your calm and common sense!

Wish all the discussions about legal matters would be more sensible, and we’d stop hearing the strident stuff. By now, I’m sure the WB folks have gone over the site with a comb, and whatever comes out of it we’ll know about in due time.

Grey drizzly busy day here….

Avatar Image says:

Umm. Err. JK will not prohibit fanfic. She has no ill will towards the idea of it (although perhaps she does some of the more hateful shipper ficcers, in which case I wouldn’t blame her), and commented jokingly on it less than a month ago. There is absolutely zero evidence that JK doesn’t want fanfic anymore, and tons to the contrary. If this site is asked to be removed, it will be an issue through WB. It will not be because it’s fanfic. As it stands there’s no evidence outside the unsourced statement from this article that anything will happen. :\

Avatar Image says:

Kelly, you appear to have been online all night!!!! Put the keyboard back! Turn off the puter!!! Give your eyes a rest ;-)))

Avatar Image says:

I find it hard to believe Jo would take legal action. The man isn’t trying to make money. No different then someone who posts a fanfic story on a forum or fan fiction site. The only difference is this guy has made a very nice website to host his story. And has even gone a step futher and made some illustrations. He even says at the bottom “Harry Potter, James Potter and all associated logos and content are copyright J.K. Rowling, Warner Brothers and associated publishers”

Avatar Image says:

While I was and still am, very angery about the publishing of the Lexicon. I’m very excited about this fan fiction book. While he may not make any money directly from the book, he probably will through ads placed on his site. I mean, he’s probably getting a million hits a day. JKR has let and even encouraged fan fiction in the past, I don’t think she will win this lawsuit if she pushes it. I say, Let there be fan fiction. It has to be free of charge though. and not published to book form.

Avatar Image says:

Well go ahead and write some fan-fiction but I’d never enjoy any fan-fiction as much as enjoy J.K. Rowling’s books. It’s just fan-fiction so whatever, no one has to read it. I sure hope he doesn’t go marching around like he’s written an amazing story because if it weren’t for Jo, he wouldn’t have this great idea to write fan-fiction. The guy should just go write his fan-fiction and shut up.

Avatar Image says:

Budb: LOL. I was. Observant. ;) I couldn’t sleep at all last night. I’m just glad I didn’t have class today.

Avatar Image says:

he cant really be sued right? unless he changes his intentions to be paid for the book…..all in all i think it sounds cute i mean, he wrote it for his family…....its not really his fault the whole thing blew up or antyhing, tho as a previous commenter mentioned he probly shouldve put something about the fact that it is fanfic on the website….o well…..

Avatar Image says:

I really want to read this book!

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shaking my head Kelly…ok, I remember when i was in college that all the interesting stuff happened at night, and I certainly never let the classroom get in the way of my education…but, ya gotta move away from the puter or ya get sucked into the swirl of the discussions (and, that aint healthy!)

Avatar Image says:

Honestly. Is something really a hoax when there’s a giant Weasley-crafted disclaimer and there’s no deliberate intent to trick people? They guy made an awesome website for his fanfic. At worst, WB ought to get him to make the disclaimer more readily apparent since some people would rather panic than read and follow directions, but I doubt they will take serious legal action against this guy. They know what a mess it’ll be if they appear to be “going after” the fanfic writers, and this guy’s only crime is that his website is unbelievably good. Unless it becomes apparent that he created this deliberately to mislead people, which I am not inclined to believe, I really think using the word “hoax” in your headlines and summaries is a bit of a loaded word, Leaky.

Avatar Image says:

It would make no sense at all to take legal action against this. It’s a FANFICTION. If she wants to take legal action against it, she’ll have to take it on over 300,000 stories, thousands of people, including me. If this legal action thing is true…wow i don’t know. I would not be on JKR’s side at all.

Unless she’s writing a prequal about the amarauders xD

Avatar Image says:

I don’t get what the big deal is; he’s not making money from his fanfic and he’s stated on the site that he’s in no way connected to JKR or WB. Of course, this disclaimer is found by entering in a password, and then you need Flash to view it, so I’d put the disclaimer on the main site, but really, it seems pretty harmless. It’s like any fanfic, but more exciting thanks to the website and graphics.

Avatar Image says:

I live in the St. Louis, MO area, and one of our local news stations visited with Mr. Lippert and did an interview.

“But Lippert did it just for fun. Because he’s not pretending to be Rowling and he’s not charging for the book, he shouldn’t be the target of any copyright lawsuits. Plus, Lippert says he has an e-mail from Rowling’s agent giving him the okay to write the amateur novel. He hopes Rowling reads his 22 chapter book.” -Fox 2’s Roche Madden

You can find the article at www.myfoxstl.com, search George Lippert. They don’t have the clip that they showed on the news last night (Monday, Nov. 19), but the text version is it in nutshell. I hope the article is helpful for all of you!

Avatar Image says:

I don’t know why it’s a hoax just because some over egger fans thought it was an official 8th book or at least a book coming out that Jo had approved. Not his fault fans took it the wrong way. This isn’t even a prequel about the mauraders, the James is Harry’s son James not his dad. Assuming its James first year it takes place a year before the epilogue in the last book assuming James is going into his 2nd year then.

Avatar Image says:

wow. Some of these comments are a bit incredible. About fanfic, JKR doesn’t actually have to allow any of it. She and WB own Harry Potter and all the related copyrights and trademakrs. They can start removing it it they just get in the mood to do it.

There are other authors who don’t allow fan fic. JKR allows it to be nice to fans. And it is incumbent on the fan fic authors to make it clear that what they do is not official. It shouldn’t be a case where people are contacting WB and JKR and asking about something. It should be very clear its unnoficial and not for profit.

Avatar Image says:

What a cool presentation! And he does have a disclaimer which is cleverly done (and very funny) when you enter the second password. Its clearly intended to be seen as fan made and non-profitable. This guy has a great sense of humour as he advertises non existant Weasley products.

This is what fandom is about, I’m curious to see what happens in 10 days on the countdown :)

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And so it begins….

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I looked at the website today and noticed that the music has changed. My guess is that that happened at the request of WB. (But that would be pure speculation.)

Avatar Image says:

interesting, Mr B…no one has mentioned WB issuing a statement, and that surprises me… thanks for the update!

Avatar Image says:

JKR would not sue the author of the web-site and never had such intentions. He said so. Just a newspaper searched for sensations.

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