Tengwar on a general purpose translation site

Mark E. Shoulson mark at kli.org
Thu Mar 10 17:45:45 CST 2022

Interesting.  In the case of tengwar, the copyright-holder has actually 
explicitly given an answer to the question:  they do not want it 
encoded.  But CBS/Paramount has never said anything one way or another 
about pIqaD (beyond boilerplate copyright notices), as far as I know.  
So tengwar would seem to be further from encodability than pIqaD, in 
this sense.  (And yet, the one disapproved of is not the one that is 

As you say, the actual relevance, legality, and enforceability of the 
Estate's statement don't really matter.  Nobody wants to be in the 
position of showing it's wrong, even successfully.


On 3/10/22 17:46, Julian Bradfield via Unicode wrote:
> The Estate does not wish to release tengwar into the public domain to
> the extent that would be required for an encoding.
> Somebody asked about public evidence of their attitude. Here is what
> their FAQ says
> https://www.tolkienestate.com/frequently-asked-questions-and-links/
>    Tolkien’s invented languages and scripts are protected by
>    copyright. You may use them for your own private interest and
>    amusement, but you may not reproduce them in any form of publication
>    or in connection with any group activity, commercial or otherwise.
> As people have remarked, there are interesting legal arguments about
> whether this statement is true, but neither Unicode nor I can afford an
> argument with an organization which is not short of money for lawyers.

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