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#123259 - 06/26/03 01:38 AM Re: "Harvest" - interesting license agreement!
TheDerman Offline
Addicted Boomer

Registered: 04/16/03
Posts: 1254
Loc: England
Hey guys,

Interestng news item relating to our current discussion:

News Item
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Derman

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#123260 - 06/26/03 01:54 AM Re: "Harvest" - interesting license agreement!
Magician Offline
Settled Boomer

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 735
Loc: Sydney, Australia
Hrmn - I thought they already started suing individuals awhile ago...

My university recently sent out emails to all staff members (yes - apparently teachers use Kazaa as well apparently) and students warning them that the continued use of Kazaa on the school network would attract disciplinary actions, because the university doesn't want lega actions taken against it for allowing its teachers/students to use its facilities to exchange games/music/movies...

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#123261 - 06/26/03 09:29 AM Re: "Harvest" - interesting license agreement!
Singer Offline
Addicted Boomer

Registered: 09/04/01
Posts: 2521
TD, I'm really not sure what point it is you're crusading, or why. I've yet to defend piracy in any way, shape, or form. No one here has. Hey, I haven't even GIVEN my opinion on piracy, since it's illegal, and I'm not challenging the law of the land.

Ultimately, though, there's arguing to be RIGHT, and there's arguing to affect change. If all we're doing is the former, then yes, all piracy hurts the industry and every individual should do their part to stop it... Agreed. That was never in question. But what have we accomplished by agreeing on that here in the ivory tower? Zip.

You're free to stand by whatever assertions you wish, of course, but if the credibility of your practical argument can't convince ME, you sure as heck won't convince someone who's pirating games illegally. That's all I'm trying to say. If we want to create change, we need to find common ground and speak the language of those standing in opposition.

As I said earlier, on an individual end user basis, piracy is an ethical issue, not a practical one. Indeed, each person must "exercise conscience and principles" for its own sake. It doesn't matter if it's hurting anyone - that criterion makes it situational ethics. And as Marian pointed out, too many people now look around and ask "what difference will it make?" As far as piracy goes, that was the "side" I was trying to (neutrally) debate. So long as Kazaa, warez, and "professionally" pirated CD's are around, we won't convince anyone that their lone acts DO make a difference, so that's the very question we should be trying to AVOID, not defend.

Truth be told, I believe in positive ethics as a vital foundation for the human heart/soul and society, so poor moral choices are far more damaging than dollars lost to an industry. I just joined this discussion because I felt some points were too simplistic to be left alone. laugh

Jack
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Editor, Adventure Gamers

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#123262 - 06/26/03 10:09 AM Re: "Harvest" - interesting license agreement!
Kickaha Offline
Addicted Boomer

Registered: 03/27/01
Posts: 2413
Loc: Cambridge, England
I believe lone acts do make a difference, perhaps you can't measure it in pence or cents, but they make a difference. Anyway of more use may be to ask where do we go from here?

The current industry model we have isn't working that well. The increasing cost of development coupled with piracy mean that as a business proposition developing an Adventure game is not a sure-fire winner. So are there any other models?

Well how about companies like Microsoft and Apple sponsoring the development of Adventure games? Apple at least develop software to sell hardware and I've bought at least one computer for playing games on.

A variant on that might be Advertising - consider wandering round Uru with Coca-Cola adverts at strategic places? Easier with online games.

Shareware is a possibility but needs that culture of "I liked that, I'll give the creator something" to be established.

Otherwise we're down to people doing games in their spare time as hobbies - some of which can be really good.

Regards, Peter.
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Used to answer to "Peter Smith", now answers to "Peter Rootham-Smith"

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#123263 - 06/26/03 10:20 AM Re: "Harvest" - interesting license agreement!
taf4 Offline
Settled Boomer

Registered: 06/29/01
Posts: 352
Loc: Michigan
Copyright does end after a certain period of time... IF the game is made after 1978 (which most are) it will end in about 95 years if it is renewed. If not renewed it lasts 28 years.

So get ready because unrenewed copyrights of games made in 1978 end in 2006 smile I am gearing up to play pong for free laugh

Note that congress keeps extending the copyright though (they last did in 1998). The theory is that they don't want Disney to lose their protection..

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#123264 - 06/26/03 10:40 AM Re: "Harvest" - interesting license agreement!
TheDerman Offline
Addicted Boomer

Registered: 04/16/03
Posts: 1254
Loc: England
You said end-user piracy, the act of copying a game for yourself from someone else, was not a real problem, because you seem to think there aren't many who do it, or those that do do it, would never have bought the game in the first place.

I'm not saying you are defending piracy - I am arguing against your assumption, and yes it is an assumption, seeing as YOU have no evidence of how many people actually do it, that these individuals are not a huge problem. I've yet to hear you argue exactly why this is not a problem, beyond your magazine articles and "this just does not happen" - it seems quite obvious to me that individuals copying games for themselves and therefore not buying them, is going to be a massive problem.

My point is simple - if there is 1 person out there who will copy a game from a friend instead of buying it, then there are also MORE people out there that will do this - if there are billions of people in the world, do you really think a few million is a lot? Your argument seemed to suggest that 10 million individuals copying games for themselves was ludicrous - again, 10 million does not seem like a lot to me - and as I said, even if only a million (surely you can't think 1 million is too many), at a $50 price that's still $50 million loss - loss as in, the people who should and would have bought the game, didn't, because they copied it - some games will never even make $1 million - I would think that those developers are concerned about this - what are your counter arguments that this is wrong?

I haven't mentioned an ethical or moral side of things - I don't think piracy is a big issue to anyone beyond, "oh no I might get done for that if they catch me" - people simply do not care that the industries are losing money - it's as simple as that - if people see a guy selling knocked of games/movies/music, they don't walk round the block for 10 minutes fighting their consciences - they just buy - they give no thought to the fact their actions may cost the industries - "1 person buying this won't be a problem will it" - sure enough, 1 person woulnd't be a problem, either buynng or copying their own, but there isn't just 1 person doing it.

There's only one way to stop piracy, and that's to just simply go and GET the pirates in an aggressive manner - the pirate gangs, are the biggest problem, you are right, but only because their actions have effects elsewhere due to reinvestment of the money they're making - if you stopped the gangs, the industry would still be losing millions of dollars a year through end-user piracy.

To back up my argument, I mentioned copy protection - this is put in place to stop the average Joe copying the game for himself or his friends - that's end-user piracy isn't it? So, if ths is NOT a problem as you have said, why bother with the protection? Crackers can easily get around it, but the average person would not know where to start cracking protection, so it serves its purpose to a degree - however there are things to download to get around copy-protection on a temporary basis, if using a copy just for yourself - these things are developed as freeware just so we can copy games - end-user piracy.

Also, the movie industry is now cracking down on developers who develop and distribute DVD to VCD ripping software - this stuff is freely available on the net and is easy to use - copying a DVD movie is the easiest thing in the world, even you and me can do it - why are they stamping down on the devlopers of such software? To stop average Joes copying stuff, because it is, and always has been, a huge problem.

Now, argue that it is NOT a problem?

I'm not accusing you of anything Jack, or saying you have defended piracy, but you did put an opinion forward, the opinion that end-user piracy was not a massive problem - I would like to know why exactly it is not?
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#123265 - 06/26/03 02:16 PM Re: "Harvest" - interesting license agreement!
Singer Offline
Addicted Boomer

Registered: 09/04/01
Posts: 2521
I'll try to sum up, because I find academic debates useless. I wasn't even planning on revisiting the thread, but I've been addressed, so I will a final time.

First of all, I don't believe I've made any assumptions. I may have used the research of others as the basis for my reasoning, but that's not the same thing. As I said, it wasn't people pulling numbers out of thin air. But the articles I'm referring to were ABOUT copy protection, and the ridiculous waste of time and expense they are, since they do so very little to alleviate large scale piracy that DO cost the industry millions of dollars a year, all for the sake of limiting the relatively few numbers that home pirate.

Secondly, arguing theories is futile. We could just compliantly agree that end user piracy is a gargantuan problem, and that anyone who does it is a selfish, ignorant fool, and we would have accomplished nothing.

You want the burden of proof to fall on ME, but I'm just offering a perspective you don't seem inclined to recognize. We can rant and rave and demand that piraters prove they're not hurting the industry, and they'll scoff! THEY don't think they are, and until you can prove that they do, then we've made no inroads whatsoever.

I was not putting out an opinion for its own sake. I was simply saying that until you are able to substantiate yours with anything more than hypothetical reasoning, your argument will fall on deaf ears for those pirating the games.

All this is moot for me, but every discussion requires balance. If anyone comes up with some staggering numbers of end-user piracy stats, I'll GLADLY look them over. My opinion is flexible, but it's currently based on the best research I've come across. Had I known I'd ever be asked for a bibliography for my posts, I'd have surely made note of them.

And on that note, I'm outta here!

Jack
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Editor, Adventure Gamers

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#123266 - 06/26/03 03:39 PM Re: "Harvest" - interesting license agreement!
TheDerman Offline
Addicted Boomer

Registered: 04/16/03
Posts: 1254
Loc: England
ohhhh let's not stop playing just yet.

You made a statement that "end-user" piracy was not a problem, it would not cause massive damage to the undustries, and the industries did not even consider it a problem - I challenged this statement with my own thoughts and opinions - I thought that's how discussions worked??? You still have not given your arguments as to why end-user piracy is a problem, and I too am at a loss as to what you have been trying to say.

Arguing theories is not useless - it happens all the time - it opens us up to new ideas, things we may not have considered.

I'm not looking to put the burden of proof on anyone - there's nothing to prove - I'd just like to know why you seem so adament that end-user piracy is not a problem and that, as you say, "relatively few people do it" - I consider this to be completely wrong, and you have not argued your corner against me - or was it that YOU weren't actually making this statement, rather just quoting from an article? If that had been the case, you would have said, "according to so and so" or, "this is what so and so said", but you SAID it as if you agreed wholeheartedely, prompting me to challenge.

My opinion has not been unreasoned - it is based on what I know and what I have read, which leads me to believe end-user piracy is huge problem - I have thought over all the evidence myself and drawn my own conclusions - I have not just taken a single magazine article or two, to be the one and only true opinion.

I don't want to rant and rave and demand that pirates proove they are not hurting the industry, and don't believe that's what I've been doing. I know they don't care - gangs don't care because they can make money - endusers don't care because either, they feel the companies are greedy, or they are simply ignorant to the fact that they ARE hurting the industry.

Finally, in my opinion, file sharing such as Napster and Kazaa is end-user piracy in the same way as copying your buddies CD is end-user piracy - the end-user is solely responsible for making THEIR particular copy (by downloading it) - and furtermore it feeds the kind of end-user piracy you are talking about - someone downloads a game from Kazaa, they put it on CD, pass it onto friends, who then make their own copies, and so the problem continues - that IS end-user piracy and is a very BIG problem.

I guess this is the end of our discussion then - thank you for your time.
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Derman

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#123267 - 06/26/03 04:38 PM Re: "Harvest" - interesting license agreement!
Magician Offline
Settled Boomer

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 735
Loc: Sydney, Australia
hehe - who would've thought such a heated argument came as a result of stating one of the terms in the licensing agreement.

Anyways - let's agree on a common ground here... from reading both of your arguments, it appears both of you agree that pirating, both as end-user (whether it be the Kazaa variety or the CD-burner variety) and large-scale criminal gang, is a big problem.

Also from your arguments, I think it's safe to assume that pirating due to gangs and organised pirating rings are definitely MORE of a problem than friends copying games for friends (not saying it isn't a problem - just that in comparison, the organised crimes are even bigger of a problem).

Singer is simply stating that given our limited resources, it probably would be more effective if we spend the resources on enforcing ways to stop the large-scale piracy going on. What we really should be discussing here is what viable, effective and cost-feasible methods can anyone think of which would contribute to stop large-scale piracy.

For example, should the industry try to appeal to the general public's sense of moral and ethics, or should they instead try to concentrate on breaking into the crime ring instead?

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#123268 - 06/26/03 05:05 PM Re: "Harvest" - interesting license agreement!
tigger Offline
Graduate Boomer

Registered: 04/02/01
Posts: 15679
Loc: England
Ok, we had a question and answer session on our tv just this evening which just Might explain one of the issues..

As far as Kaza goes Music wise.. most folks interviewed thought that if the music industry released cd's at a reasonable price in the first place, more sales would result. Its the same with produced games.. cut the markup and you get more sales of originals and less to the copiers.. I would rather buy 1 original game than 2 copies.. do the maths.. a copy game can cost only $7.50.. any nuber of discs.. So make prices more affordable and punters will buy, no matter what the game is..

Tig
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A bounce a day keeps the doctor away!!
Playing Sims2, Sherlock, Phantom of Venice
Reading Storm Breaking

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#123269 - 06/26/03 05:22 PM Re: "Harvest" - interesting license agreement!
Marian Offline
Moderator
Graduate Boomer

Registered: 07/04/00
Posts: 19551
Loc: near Yosemite in California
Hi Tig,

I understand what those folks were saying, but isn't that also a bit like saying that if you cannot afford the price of a new car (and I sure can't), that it follows from there that it is perfectly acceptable for me to steal one instead?

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#123270 - 06/26/03 05:27 PM Re: "Harvest" - interesting license agreement!
Magician Offline
Settled Boomer

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 735
Loc: Sydney, Australia
oh, that reminds me of another (semi-amusing) story that happened to a relative some time ago (think it was last year but can't really remember)...

Anyways, this relative of mine went to the music store and bought a music CD then went home. She was really happy and immediately placed the music CD in the CD player... however, she was rather upset at the bad quality of the music CD (apparently a lot of static or hissing noise or something). Being an unsatisfied customer, she angrily took the CD back to the store and demanded a refund for the bad quality - she got the refund. Anyhow, I assume some time later she laid her hands on a pirated copy - and it turned out this pirated copy had excellent quality music.

After this experience, she never bought anything legal again.

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#123271 - 06/26/03 06:12 PM Re: "Harvest" - interesting license agreement!
Streyken Offline
Shy Boomer

Registered: 03/30/03
Posts: 68
Loc: Vancouver, BC
----------------
Magician: "...what viable, effective and cost-feasible methods can anyone think of which would contribute to stop large-scale piracy."
-----------------
I was thinking about this the other day with regards to Kazaa and the like; if I were a developer and worried about my stuff being stolen why not make an additional 10 or 20 pieces of software with about the same file size as your commercial piece, but which does nothing and put it on the shared network. If it was really that good that people would search and download it, it would propagate through the system relatively quickly. The idea being to make it so cumbersome it wouldn't be worth the hassle for the majority of people to download a dozen or so 500MB files in the hope it is the right one. Just a thought.
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#123272 - 06/26/03 06:28 PM Re: "Harvest" - interesting license agreement!
Magician Offline
Settled Boomer

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 735
Loc: Sydney, Australia
Sean, I think your method is already being used by some of the people in the software/music/movie, as someone else mentioned in one of the reply... smile

That is one way, although considering that broadband in the US apparently are uncapped and provide unlimited download (not measured by megabytes like here in Australia), I don't think it's terribly effective.

Also, from the conversations I've had with my friends in learning how they sort viruses from rubbish/dud files from the "good stuff", it appears they've got a very reliable system going there. I'll try to find out more about this system and let everyone know once I got more info... smile

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#123273 - 06/28/03 03:20 AM Re: "Harvest" - interesting license agreement!
Advpuzlov Offline
Addicted Boomer

Registered: 06/05/99
Posts: 2027
Loc: USA
THEDERMAN
Quote:
people simply do not care that the industries are losing money - it's as simple as that - if people see a guy selling knocked of games/movies/music, they don't walk round the block for 10 minutes fighting their consciences - they just buy - they give no thought to the fact their actions may cost the industries.
I'm sure you did not mean it in the way it sounds, but your use of people ticked me off a bit since it was so all-inclusive. If you had said "there are many people who, etc." I would not have been bothered. But most of the people I know aren't numbered among the people to which you refer. All-inclusive statements tend to bother me in general, since they are so rarely accurate, and when I feel that characteristics have been attributed to me by having included me in a group, I take it amiss. I know, that's being touchy, but having read RAY's recent rant, I felt encouraged to bring up the point, even though I am quite sure that you didn't mean to apply your characterizations to everybody. smile
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