Jimquisition: Piracy Episode One - Copyright

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
Piracy Episode One - Copyright

Piracy is one of those issues that will absolutely never die, like the secrets of the Bermuda Triangle of the truth of the Zelda Timeline. Jim Sterling has always had a set view on piracy -- it's not the worst crime in the world, but it's selfish theft nonetheless. However, in the wake of corporate attempts to buy our legal system, he has reexamined the piracy issue and come away with a rather altered stance.

This is the first episode in a miniature series looking at the problem of videogame piracy.

Watch Video
 

Marmooset

New member
Mar 29, 2010
895
0
0
You weren't wrong the first time. They are. What happens in another area does not change the nature of an individual's actions.
Your example, if taken to extremes, would give a partial justification for Swinging Ape to engage in piracy - not the sideline sitting parasites who actually do so. Another bad guy in the room does not preclude you from being one, too.
 

Killertje

New member
Dec 12, 2010
137
0
0
Some interesting points. I guess buying old games whose developers are long gone is bad for the industry, since it gives publishers a reason not to sell the IP.
 

Stemer

New member
Nov 22, 2011
53
0
0
Hang on if anyone said this on the forums they would get banned faster than you could say "hypocrisy".

I completely agree with Jim though, and that was a great episode.
 
Jan 27, 2011
3,721
0
0
Dear Jim:


As a reformed pirate, I agree. And as someone who is just beginning work on a game with some friends, this is a VERY important warning to me and my fellow teammates. We will need to keep our modsbanned creative right to the project.

I find it appalling how some companies can just take your creative idea, and then neither do anything with them, nor let YOU do anything with them. It's total shit, and totally unacceptable.

I will spread this video far and wide. Stay classy, Jim. *salute*
 

Hitchmeister

New member
Nov 24, 2009
453
0
0
On the other hand, these big publishers didn't seize the rights away from creators at gunpoint. They walked up and waved a bag of cash in front of them. It seemed like a good deal at the time, and I have a hard time feeling sympathy for anyone who sold their soul, or IP, to EA.*

Then on the third hand, you get stuff like a band posting videos they created themselves of their own music on Youtube and getting takedown orders from their record company because they don't have the rights to promote themselves in any way that might interfere with the company's profits. Yeah, screw that.




*I know EA wasn't actually involved in the example in the video, but I wanted to draw a selling your soul to the devil analogy, and EA just fit so well.
 
Dec 14, 2009
15,528
0
0
Well said boyo.

Also, new glasses? I ask this, because I don't usually feel your gaze drilling into my soul.
 

Ilikemilkshake

New member
Jun 7, 2010
1,982
0
0
This episode gave me a mind boner.
Completely agree with everything you said.. also gutted about Metal Arms i used to love playing that back on the gamecube, at least now i know why there hasnt been another.
 

Scrustle

New member
Apr 30, 2011
2,031
0
0
Interesting to see how what Jim says has changed since this whole SOPA thing. I'm not calling him a hypocrite or anything, because he's not. It's just interesting to see how his ideas are changing in light of changing events.
 

Bobic

New member
Nov 10, 2009
1,532
0
0
You mean I missed out on two more Metal Arms games? Those Bastards!

Actually, that does make a lot of sense, I always thought there were a few plotpoints and things that were just forgotten about by the end of the game. Still, it's a pity.

Oh, and to be on topic, although you have a point, I still don't think someone being a dick justifies being a dick to them, unless your dickishness helps fight their dickishness. Then again, I've always looked at morals on a personal level, rather than a big picture thing. If you take something, that doesn't belong to you, that you didn't earn, and wasn't gifted to you by someone with the right to gift it, then you are a thief and a twonk.
 

MonkeyPunch

New member
Feb 20, 2008
589
0
0
What's f'ed up is that in the last few months I have garnered the same rage as Jim towards publishers etc. It makes me f'ing furious recently.

And the point which I find the most poignant is that actually Publishers really are becoming totally obsolete and all this recent bullshit they've instigated really does look like nothing else than a feeble attempt at making sure they are somehow still relevant. Which they aren't. They just put billions in to making sure they can't be taken out of the loop offering totally irrelevant and immaterial services.

Anyways, best stop there before that vein on my forehead pops.

btw. I still think pirates (in video game terms) are people who don't want games as we know them to continue and thrive, but they piss me off less than the corporate scum. Especially when most of the games revenue nowaydays goes to some fat slob behind a desk without the faintest clue about games, yet calls all the shots like he does.

In fact I truly believe that the corporate side of gaming is killing the games industry far quicker than any pirates are.
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
Fun fact. The artists and developers own 100% of their IP. They then decide to sell the rights away for money and more resources. Duh.
 

enzilewulf

New member
Jun 19, 2009
2,130
0
0
Well said. This actually just changed my views on Sony and Universal Media. Fuck them. Seriously the Internet is a world all its own, one any one can contribute to, but not one that any one may regulate. Censoring it is a crime all its own.
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
Sober Thal said:
Fun fact. The artists and developers own 100% of their IP. They then decide to sell the rights away for money and more resources. Duh.
That's what happens when the rights-buyers have rigged the game in their favor before the artists create their art. Duh.
 

newdarkcloud

New member
Aug 2, 2010
452
0
0
Publishers don't sell or give back the IP to avoid competition. If they sold back the IP, then the developer could theoretically just go to another publisher for the sequel or self-publish.

I'm not saying it's good (or moral, because it does stifle creativity and I do agree with Jim), but I can rationalize the reasoning behind the action.

On the other hand, I do consider pirating games from these old, unused IPs victimless crimes.
 

Ariyura

New member
Oct 18, 2008
258
0
0
Please correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't this why they can't get the IP back for Firefly? Because Fox now owns it?
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
Jimothy Sterling said:
Sober Thal said:
Fun fact. The artists and developers own 100% of their IP. They then decide to sell the rights away for money and more resources. Duh.
That's what happens when the rights-buyers have rigged the game in their favor before the artists create their art. Duh.
Creators have a choice to sign these contracts. Are we implying that these people who make games don't know how to read?
 

cynicalsaint1

Salvation a la Mode
Apr 1, 2010
545
0
0
While copyright law is a festering pile of bullshit, I still have to say that I feel that piracy is bad for the industry in general. I mean you talk like game sales aren't where the actual developers of the games are getting their money from - or determine what games get made, etc.

You can hate on the big publishers all you want but by pirating you hurt the publisher and the developer, essentially punishing the devs for the publisher's sins.
 

Kojiro ftt

New member
Apr 1, 2009
425
0
0
They only spent $190k? That's peanuts. Sounds like they didn't really think it would work. If they were truly behind it, I would expect numbers in the millions.
 

Duol

New member
Aug 18, 2008
84
0
0
They sold their art to people who were better placed to make money out of it... So? I hate all this "suffering artist" crap. If you don't need publishers then do it yourself, just don't cry when Modern Warfare 83 sells 83 million times as many copies as you do.

Stealing a loaf of bread from a rich person is the same as stealing it from a hobo. Not that I think piracy should be directly equated with theft. People knowingly commit crimes which disadvantage other people and their ability to make money. I don't care if it's Kotik or hobo 73.
 

Revnak_v1legacy

Fixed by "Monday"
Mar 28, 2010
1,979
0
0
I generally cannot agree with most kinds of piracy. However, it is an issue that is not so much just gray, but rather a white and gray. Clearly buying the game is always right, but pirating a game is not the worst thing in the world. In some cases I suppose it is better that someone pirates something than never play the game at all. Still, I cannot support piracy, only tollerate it.

Copyright law is pretty fucked up though. I think that you could be onto something with your loaning out copyrights idea Jim. It seems your limitless wisdom has yet again brought brought glorious revelation to my unworthy mind.
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
Sober Thal said:
Jimothy Sterling said:
Sober Thal said:
Fun fact. The artists and developers own 100% of their IP. They then decide to sell the rights away for money and more resources. Duh.
That's what happens when the rights-buyers have rigged the game in their favor before the artists create their art. Duh.
Creators have a choice to sign these contracts. Are we implying that these people who make games don't know how to read?
It is a Hobson's choice. Especially before digital distribution became much more widespread. Sure, they could "choose" not to go through a publisher, but in an industry run by the publishers, what choice is that?

The deck is stacked in the favor of publishers. For the longest time, they've owned the deck, dealt the cards, owned the cards, and bought anybody holding the cards. Some of us don't think that should continue.
 

Xifel

New member
Nov 28, 2007
138
0
0
Hitchmeister said:
On the other hand, these big publishers didn't seize the rights away from creators at gunpoint. They walked up and waved a bag of cash in front of them. It seemed like a good deal at the time, and I have a hard time feeling sympathy for anyone who sold their soul, or IP, to EA.*

Then on the third hand, you get stuff like a band posting videos they created themselves of their own music on Youtube and getting takedown orders from their record company because they don't have the rights to promote themselves in any way that might interfere with the company's profits. Yeah, screw that.




*I know EA wasn't actually involved in the example in the video, but I wanted to draw a selling your soul to the devil analogy, and EA just fit so well.
It is true that the creators has been paid for the rights. However I do not believe there are any buisness model that allow the creator to keep their rights. I believe it is "Give us your stuff and we get it out, or stay in the dark".

What we need is a company that can help creators get their product out, without taking the rights for the product. This would be a very big change from the current model, but it would be amazing. I think something like the indie market on XboxLive but waaaay bigger.
 

Aureliano

New member
Mar 5, 2009
604
0
0
Excellent show, Jim. Really one of the best in a while. Hopefully you'll also mention the insane length of copyrights (which are now owned by these companies in many cases): around 130 years or 70 years after the death of the original artist if I remember correctly. All so the lumbering, undead behemoth that is Disney can keep its mascot under copyright until the end of eternity, long after the death of its original creator.

When those rich men make their money off anything they themselves have made aside from more money or a business structure, then we'll talk about who's ripping off who.
 

Wintermoot

New member
Aug 20, 2009
6,563
0
0
I totally agree with this.
in some cases piracy is the only way to get older movies/games/songs and if the rent-a-license plan where to get implemented it would make the internet a better place.
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
Jimothy Sterling said:
Sober Thal said:
Jimothy Sterling said:
Sober Thal said:
Fun fact. The artists and developers own 100% of their IP. They then decide to sell the rights away for money and more resources. Duh.
That's what happens when the rights-buyers have rigged the game in their favor before the artists create their art. Duh.
Creators have a choice to sign these contracts. Are we implying that these people who make games don't know how to read?
It is a Hobson's choice. Especially before digital distribution became much more widespread. Sure, they could "choose" not to go through a publisher, but in an industry run by the publishers, what choice is that?

The deck is stacked in the favor of publishers. For the longest time, they've owned the deck, dealt the cards, owned the cards, and bought anybody holding the cards. Some of us don't think that should continue.
Hobson's choice, eh? Damn right! It's their money! You want their money, you agree to what they offer. If Valve is such an evil entity (publisher) why do people bend over backwards to praise them?

The 'artists' need to wise up if this is as bad for them as people seem to be saying.
 

newdarkcloud

New member
Aug 2, 2010
452
0
0
Sober Thal said:
Jimothy Sterling said:
Sober Thal said:
Fun fact. The artists and developers own 100% of their IP. They then decide to sell the rights away for money and more resources. Duh.
That's what happens when the rights-buyers have rigged the game in their favor before the artists create their art. Duh.
Creators have a choice to sign these contracts. Are we implying that these people who make games don't know how to read?
Publishers won't even look at a developer if the developer wants to keep the majority share of the rights to the IP. The only exception is when the developer has already become well known enough to have publishers compete for them.
 

Seneschal

Blessed are the righteous
Jun 27, 2009
561
0
0
The most problematic aspect of this attitude, while it deservedly takes out one's frustrations on the obsolete publishing system, is that the content creators have to rely on charity. Unless we have an alternate system of intellectual property, creators of digital content (which is a post-scarcity good, cannot be evaluated objectively and can hardly fit in the classical supply/demand economy) must rely on the good will of their customers to support them (much like a street performer does) even though their creations can be acquired freely, everywhere, at any time, in unlimited amounts. We'll soon be forced to face this problem with new views on intellectual property, because the old ones are almost impossible to maintain and enforce. For example, smaller content (like music) is more and more commonly just freely distributed (which acts as marketing to the creator) and the creator then earns from live appearances. Of course, this doesn't apply to videogames, so people smarter than me will have to figure out how the medium will sustain itself in the future. Maybe on-demand cloud gaming? Maybe ubiquitous, approachable, freely-given, tiny games that you can donate to, or that have microtransactions of some sort?

But in the meantime, these companies are artificially creating scarcity by trying to censor and control the means of distribution. If free and unlimited web access is rare, then access to games is restricted and special and therefore worth more! BRILLIANT! So of course they'll step over human rights to achieve it, it would be the Philosopher's Stone for media companies!
 

Mahha

New member
May 20, 2009
105
0
0
Did you know that copyright law was not meant to create huge profits?
The original law was meant as a protection of intellectual property for a period of max 28 years, as to prevent stealing of new ideas and after that period ANYONE was permitted to change alter and publish new stories based on the works without permission. It's a pretty awesome idea at the core, smart and creative people get incentive to make new shit and after 28 year (lets face it if you haven't been working on new ip or updated your old ip it's very unlikely that a sudden bolt of creativity will hit your brain and you'll start expanding on your 28 old year book or whatever) fans can start tangents and new stories based on you work. This was so that no one person could live a whole life with just one contribution to society.
Now for sake of an example let's look at the creations of Walt Disney. Do you even remember when was the last time a good Mickey Mouse cartoon, book etc. came out? Well I don't and I fucking love Mickey Mouse. The thing is that by extending copyright ad infinitum you prevent eager and capable people bringing new life to old creations.

here's a nice video that explains it:

I don't know how this would relate to more modern problems such as piracy, but I'm sure if the 28 years rule was still in effect things would be a lot different.
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
newdarkcloud said:
Sober Thal said:
Jimothy Sterling said:
Sober Thal said:
Fun fact. The artists and developers own 100% of their IP. They then decide to sell the rights away for money and more resources. Duh.
That's what happens when the rights-buyers have rigged the game in their favor before the artists create their art. Duh.
Creators have a choice to sign these contracts. Are we implying that these people who make games don't know how to read?
Publishers won't even look at a developer if the developer wants to keep the majority share of the rights to the IP. The only exception is when the developer has already become well known enough to have publishers compete for them.
What's wrong with that? Are publishers just supposed to gamble away money on possible crap product?
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
Holy shit, this is exactly what has been going through my head for these last few weeks and you've put it into words. Fuck the corporations!
 

razing32

New member
Feb 3, 2010
144
0
0
The Metal Arms thing reminded me of how Piranha Bites lost the rights to the Gothic universe.
The new developers butchered the series starting with Gothic 4 and the series is now a mediocre-bad action rpg with zero innovation. However they do get to cash in on the earlier Gothics.

Thankfully , the Piranhas have brought us Risen and a sequel is on the horizon. But I still hate the fact that their franchise was hijacked by a publisher and ultimately taken to the slaughtering table.

It's like taking someone's race horse to turn it into sausage. FFS !
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
Sober Thal said:
Jimothy Sterling said:
Sober Thal said:
Fun fact. The artists and developers own 100% of their IP. They then decide to sell the rights away for money and more resources. Duh.
That's what happens when the rights-buyers have rigged the game in their favor before the artists create their art. Duh.
Creators have a choice to sign these contracts. Are we implying that these people who make games don't know how to read?
Yeah they have a massive choice don't they? "Oh you don't sign the contract? You get no funding, you don't get distribution, you don't get advertisement. Have fun making your game jackoff."

OT: Thank god for jim, at least someone can admit when they are wrong instead of acting like the publishers need little white knights to defend them from the big bad pirates
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
FelixG said:
Sober Thal said:
Jimothy Sterling said:
Sober Thal said:
Fun fact. The artists and developers own 100% of their IP. They then decide to sell the rights away for money and more resources. Duh.
That's what happens when the rights-buyers have rigged the game in their favor before the artists create their art. Duh.
Creators have a choice to sign these contracts. Are we implying that these people who make games don't know how to read?
Yeah they have a massive choice don't they? "Oh you don't sign the contract? You get no funding, you don't get distribution, you don't get advertisement. Have fun making your game jackoff."

OT: Thank god for jim, at least someone can admit when they are wrong instead of acting like the publishers need little white knights to defend them from the big bad pirates
Notch is such a jackoff, isn't he...
 

Louzerman102

New member
Mar 12, 2011
191
0
0
Sober Thal said:
Jimothy Sterling said:
Sober Thal said:
Jimothy Sterling said:
Sober Thal said:
Fun fact. The artists and developers own 100% of their IP. They then decide to sell the rights away for money and more resources. Duh.
That's what happens when the rights-buyers have rigged the game in their favor before the artists create their art. Duh.
Creators have a choice to sign these contracts. Are we implying that these people who make games don't know how to read?
It is a Hobson's choice. Especially before digital distribution became much more widespread. Sure, they could "choose" not to go through a publisher, but in an industry run by the publishers, what choice is that?

The deck is stacked in the favor of publishers. For the longest time, they've owned the deck, dealt the cards, owned the cards, and bought anybody holding the cards. Some of us don't think that should continue.
Hobson's choice, eh? Damn right! It's their money! You want their money, you agree to what they offer. If Valve is such an evil entity (publisher) why do people bend over backwards to praise them?

The 'artists' need to wise up if this is as bad for them as people seem to be saying.
You're confusing what steam does. Microsoft owns the halo IP. EA owns the dead space IP. Tell me how Steam owns Space Pirates and Zombies, Solar 2, Dungeons of Dredmor, or any other indie Game. Jim's statements were never against valve.
 

SmokePants

New member
Jun 28, 2010
21
0
0
Sterling, for every point you raise in these videos, there are about 5 that completely fly over your head.

In your perfect world where rights go to the creators, nothing original will ever be made again. If the greedy old men can't own it, then they won't fund its production. They will simply find something else to do with their money.

It is not required that you empathize with faceless corporate entities, but it would be nice if you understood that this stuff represents GDP and that software and content will make up a larger and larger percent of the wealth of many developed nations (not just the US). They are going to protect that wealth (eventually), regardless of lobbyists or kickbacks. We just have to prevent that corporate influence from fast-tracking ill-considered, unworkable, narrow-view, and destructive bills like SOPA and PIPA. The sooner we get to a well-rounded, big picture solution, the better it will be for everyone. Otherwise, these types of legislative scares are going to keep happening until one of them passes.
 

TheCakeisALie87

New member
Jun 7, 2010
46
0
0
Great episode, I have to say I was a critic of your early episodes on the escapist since I couldn't really figure out if you were serious or not, but now I look forward to it every week. Also everyone should check out CPG Grey's video on copyright on his youtube channel. He goes into the basis of copyright law and how it has been seriously f****d up. For example, want to make a Harry Potter movie? Think you'll do it within your lifetime...probably not, it is public domain material in...2116! Link here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tk862BbjWx4&feature=g-user-u
 

mjc0961

YOU'RE a pie chart.
Nov 30, 2009
3,847
0
0
Marmooset said:
You weren't wrong the first time. They are. What happens in another area does not change the nature of an individual's actions.
Your example, if taken to extremes, would give a partial justification for Swinging Ape to engage in piracy - not the sideline sitting parasites who actually do so. Another bad guy in the room does not preclude you from being one, too.
I have to agree with this. That bit about how Copyright law is messed up with the Metal Arms example, that certainly gave me something new to think about. But I'm not about to let the pirates off the hook. They aren't helping anything. Illegally downloading games, music, and whatever else doesn't fix copyright law. It only gets publishers and other groups to try and make it worse with crap like PIPA and SOPA. It gets DRM and other nonsense put into our games. Obviously publishers are not without blame for inflicting such crap on paying customers and leaving them to suffer while pirates get around it again and get a better product, but pirates are also to blame. No, I still won't buy into any of their bullshit justifications either. I don't care if you wouldn't have bought it anyway. I don't care if you think you're sticking it to the publisher. I don't even care if you bought the game but want the non-DRM version pirates made. You're still inflating those piracy numbers that publishers look at and say "Oh crap, guess we'd better try even harder to stop it next time. And we need stiffer copyright law and things like SOPA and PIPA too!".

I just see two groups of bad guys rather than one now. Publishers and pirates are fighting each other, and no matter what happens between them in that fight, it's the paying customers who lose. And I'm not about to let either side off the hook for it. Publishers, stop being shit. Pirates, stop being shit!

Anyway, Metal Arms. I remember seeing that game on the Xbox Live Marketplace years ago. Looking again, it's still there for $15. I almost bought it because I looked up some info and it seemed kind of like Ratchet and Clank. I don't know why I didn't though. I'm not going to get it now either, as my backlog is already huge enough, but I'll make a note of it for later so I don't forget about this game's existence again.
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
Louzerman102 said:
Sober Thal said:
Jimothy Sterling said:
Sober Thal said:
Jimothy Sterling said:
Sober Thal said:
Fun fact. The artists and developers own 100% of their IP. They then decide to sell the rights away for money and more resources. Duh.
That's what happens when the rights-buyers have rigged the game in their favor before the artists create their art. Duh.
Creators have a choice to sign these contracts. Are we implying that these people who make games don't know how to read?
It is a Hobson's choice. Especially before digital distribution became much more widespread. Sure, they could "choose" not to go through a publisher, but in an industry run by the publishers, what choice is that?

The deck is stacked in the favor of publishers. For the longest time, they've owned the deck, dealt the cards, owned the cards, and bought anybody holding the cards. Some of us don't think that should continue.
Hobson's choice, eh? Damn right! It's their money! You want their money, you agree to what they offer. If Valve is such an evil entity (publisher) why do people bend over backwards to praise them?

The 'artists' need to wise up if this is as bad for them as people seem to be saying.
You're confusing what steam does. Microsoft owns the halo IP. EA owns the dead space IP. Tell me how Steam owns Space Pirates and Zombies, Solar 2, Dungeons of Dredmor, or any other indie Game. Jim's statements were never against valve.
Valve is a publisher too. I realize they don't publish every game on STEAM. Jim makes it sound as if EVERY publisher is evil, and devs have no choice in the matter. Devs need to wise up. Look at Notch and Minecraft. It isn't easy to get your name out their, nor should it be. You pay these big named companies for work they do. No money? Sell the rights, or do the work yourself (if every publisher is soooo evil).
 

Meggiepants

Not a pigeon roost
Jan 19, 2010
2,536
0
0
The problem with your argument is you assume publishers are contributing nothing to the process, that they have nothing to risk in the whole endeavor of creating a video game. While I don't disagree with your example for Metal Arms, a game that is highly unlikely to be re-released in any case, I think it's still stealing to pirate that game.

Publishers who back games take gambles, expensive ones. The creators of those games sold the rights to their games for the opportunity to possibly make big bucks, also a gamble. They don't necessarily have the money to lobby Nintendo/Sony/Microsoft to make sure theirs games are licensed and produced for the consoles. They likely don't have the money to advertise the game, to publish it, to create the box art, to go to E3 and get noticed by thousands of gamers. They rely on the publisher to do this. The publisher has no idea they'll make their money back. I'm sure their are plenty of games that are net losses for companies like EA. Not every game is going to net EA huge profit margins. Some will undoubtedly be Too Human.

The reason I think it is still stealing to pirate a game like Metal Arms, is because the publisher that rightfully paid the creator for the rights to that game entered a contract saying, "I promise to give you money now, on the hopes that I can make a profit off of this thing in the future."

I don't know if the publisher made all their money back on that game. But it doesn't really matter. They have purchased the right to make as much money as they want to. If you invest in something, that's how it works. If we arbitrarily decide which contracts are right, and which are wrong, we are putting ourselves in the role of the judiciary. This, in my opinion, is the biggest problem with PIPA and SOPA. They bypass judicial review and become a law unto themselves. We are no different than them if we decided to take on the role of deciding who deserves money for their products, and who doesn't. We are no different than them if we say piracy is okay, because some corporations have too much money and don't really deserve anymore.

Let the courts decide which contracts should be looked at. If you don't like copyright law, then start a lobbying group to change it. Don't sink to the level of the corporations you despise. I know it sounds cliche, but really, you are playing into the corporations' hands. All they need to do now is say, "See? These lowlifes aren't interested in paying, just like we told you."

After all, if we start to tear apart the legal world of contracts, what's to stop your employer from saying, "I don't need to pay you this week. I think you have enough money. You are spending it all on video games anyway."

Let me be absolutely clear, I do not support SOPA or PIPA, but I do not, and never will, support piracy either. Even if fat cat EA Execs don't really get hurt from it, you do give them an excuse to make shitty laws like SOPA by doing it, and you also give them an excuse to hurt the paychecks of their employees. They don't need anymore excuses to fuck us over. The public at large is easily fooled by their rhetoric. Don't give them examples to feed into their lies.
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
Diana Kingston-Gabai said:
Sober Thal said:
What's wrong with that? Are publishers just supposed to gamble away money on possible crap product?
Why not? We (the customers) do...
How so? You mean the people that don't know how to research a product before they buy it?

Yeah, they gamble, and it's silly.
 

veloper

New member
Jan 20, 2009
4,597
0
0
I'm not convinced that publishers aren't doing anything useful.

High profile games cost millions of dollars to make. Publishers fund that money and take the risk for possible failure.
That's not to say that money could never come from another source, but I doubt a bank would offer developers better terms.

That said, I do agree software piracy is a victimless crime, but not just when big companies are concearned, but in all scenarios. It's not a case of taking something away, but rather a case of not contributing.
It's selfish, but there's alot of (legal) ways already where the game company won't see a penny from you. Buying used is just as selfish (just less intelligent). You could simply not play the game at all and nobody can prove or disprove that you didn't pirate it.

I think of it this way: if the publisher makes a profit, the wage slaves who made that nice game for us to play, get to keep their funding for the next game. That's the way you support artists who sold their creation.
 

CatmanStu

New member
Jul 22, 2008
338
0
0
All of the big name devs (the ones that can pretty much do what they want) have that freedom because at one point they made a decision to sacrifice the ownership of their IP, as well as some of their artistic freedom, in exchange for the funds to make the games they wanted to make. In return they got wide distribution and publicity that gave them a level of leverage on their next project, which they capitallised on to go through the cycle again, until they have so much respect in gamers and critics eyes that the publisher doesn't want to interfere as it may affect their sales, or worse push the dev into someone elses camp.

Developers need publishers money as much as publishers need their ideas; neither one are criminal or victim; or do we want all games to go back to the 16 bit days?
 

aPod

New member
Jan 14, 2010
1,102
0
0
Wow Jim, Boom indeed. The Jimquisition was razor sharp today.

It brings up a good issue, who should have control over the copyrighted material. The people who funded it or the people who created it.

To me justice would see the creators owners and those who funded its creation merely capable of profiting from it for a period of time. So, I do agree with you and this episode.

Excellent job.
 
Aug 3, 2010
185
0
0
Sober Thal said:
How so? You mean the people that don't know how to research a product before they buy it?

Yeah, they gamble, and it's silly.
I fail to see how any amount of research would've stopped customers from shelling out substantial amounts of money for products like "Elemental: War of Magic" or "Amy", to name just a few recent duds...
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
Diana Kingston-Gabai said:
Sober Thal said:
How so? You mean the people that don't know how to research a product before they buy it?

Yeah, they gamble, and it's silly.
I fail to see how any amount of research would've stopped customers from shelling out substantial amounts of money for products like "Elemental: War of Magic" or "Amy", to name just a few recent duds...
Amy? Seriously?

First off, it had a demo, secondly... ever heard of video game reviewers?

Seriously, research. It isn't rocket science!
 
Jun 11, 2008
5,331
0
0
While I am not in full agreement over the publisher thing as they can provide the capital to companies to make big games I do agree they abuse their power so to speak. What I keep coming back to is that Hollywood was basically formed to escape patent laws and that they have been complaining about piracy for years. They have tried to get the US to make a law to ban VCRs and MP3 players so I honestly cannot back anything a publisher does in this regard.

All they have been doing in regards to "stopping" piracy is try to hold back progress. What they need to do in the case of video games is create DRM which is non invasive and hard for the average to moderate computer literate person to crack. That keeps the honest people honest and doesn't treat paying customers like criminals with a hot lead digital enema on their games.
 

mjc0961

YOU'RE a pie chart.
Nov 30, 2009
3,847
0
0
Diana Kingston-Gabai said:
Sober Thal said:
How so? You mean the people that don't know how to research a product before they buy it?

Yeah, they gamble, and it's silly.
I fail to see how any amount of research would've stopped customers from shelling out substantial amounts of money for products like "Elemental: War of Magic" or "Amy", to name just a few recent duds...
Well, let's see.

Amy came out. I heard it sucked. Read some reviews that said it sucked. Watched some gameplay footage on YouTube and saw for myself that it sucked. Didn't buy it. That's how any amount of researched stopped me from shelling out money for Amy.
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
Sober Thal said:
Diana Kingston-Gabai said:
Sober Thal said:
What's wrong with that? Are publishers just supposed to gamble away money on possible crap product?
Why not? We (the customers) do...
How so? You mean the people that don't know how to research a product before they buy it?

Yeah, they gamble, and it's silly.
Yeah because those same publishers don't buy reviews or only release the polished bits for trailers...

Hell this site alone gave Dragon Age 2 a 5/5 and called it "a pinnacle of RPGs" Yet what was delivered was a game with mediocre story, copy paste dungeons, and waves of enemies that appear out of midair...

Yep research would have let you avoid that when reviewers are sooo objective.
 

Robert B. Marks

New member
Jun 10, 2008
340
0
0
I managed to get about six minutes in before I had to stop watching - just too many misconceptions about copyright and the industry. My background is as an author and the owner of a small publishing company, so I deal with copyright on a regular basis. So, to correct some of the misconceptions in the first six minutes:

1. Copyright IS about protecting creator's rights. However, 95% of it is not about protecting creator's rights from consumers. Most of copyright is a legal framework governing the interaction between those who create and those who distribute the creations, mainly during the contract negotiations. An example of the protection provided is to prevent a distributor from taking a creator's work, declining to publish that work, and then adding a new name to it and publishing it anyway. That goes both ways - another protection is to prevent a creator from selling exclusive rights to a work to one publisher, and then going behind that publisher's back and selling the same exclusive rights to another.

2. Copyright IS built so that the creative artist owns the copyright to his/her work upon completion of the work. In order for the creative artist to lose those rights, s/he has to sign them away. One of the reasons that there are literary agents is to protect authors from contracts that strip them of their rights to their own work. That the equivalent in the music industry often do not do the same is scandalous, to say the least.

3. There are nasty companies out there with highly predatory practices interested only in their bottom line, 'tis true. The music industry is one of the worst out there in that. But that's a problem with industry practices, not copyright law. To say that it's a problem with copyright is like saying that a security company failing to call the police on time during a burglary is a problem with anti-theft laws. Requiring creative artists to sign their entire copyright to a work away in the music, film, and software industries is a nasty industry practice, but it is an INDUSTRY practice.

4. If anybody wants to say that game companies are not injured by computer game piracy, I would ask them to take a moment and count the number of PC game companies that hopped ship to the smaller console market over the last 10 years. Compared to 2002, the computer game world is considerably sparser than it used to be.

5. Publishers are important, and when doing their jobs properly can provide a level of quality control, distribution support, and marketing that a creative artist alone cannot. To say that in the past the need for distributors was an illusion is ludicrous, particularly considering that the internet has only been available to the general public for the last 20 years or so. It may be easier to self-publish now, but it wasn't in the past, and many of the functions of publishers and distributors are still done better by distributors than by the creative artist alone, if for no other reason than the distributor generally has more resources.

Anyway, that corrects the more grievous misconceptions. I really wish that people would do their research sometimes.
 

Robert B. Marks

New member
Jun 10, 2008
340
0
0
Xifel said:
Hitchmeister said:
On the other hand, these big publishers didn't seize the rights away from creators at gunpoint. They walked up and waved a bag of cash in front of them. It seemed like a good deal at the time, and I have a hard time feeling sympathy for anyone who sold their soul, or IP, to EA.*

Then on the third hand, you get stuff like a band posting videos they created themselves of their own music on Youtube and getting takedown orders from their record company because they don't have the rights to promote themselves in any way that might interfere with the company's profits. Yeah, screw that.




*I know EA wasn't actually involved in the example in the video, but I wanted to draw a selling your soul to the devil analogy, and EA just fit so well.
It is true that the creators has been paid for the rights. However I do not believe there are any buisness model that allow the creator to keep their rights. I believe it is "Give us your stuff and we get it out, or stay in the dark".
In a lot of book publishing, the standard contract is for first publication rights. The copyright itself remains with the author.
 

RJ Dalton

New member
Aug 13, 2009
2,285
0
0
Well, if there's one thing I can agree with, it's that big publishers are nothing but leaches on society that need to be removed from the picture.
 

TheDooD

New member
Dec 23, 2010
812
0
0
Preach it Jim, preach it.

OT

Thats why I only DL'ed SNES, Genesis, NES and Arcade Titles because who am I really hurting because I wanted to play Secret Of Mana, Vectorman, Contra and Raiden 2.
 

HavocS6

New member
Nov 3, 2009
23
0
0
Ariyura said:
Please correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't this why they can't get the IP back for Firefly? Because Fox now owns it?
Yeah, I think it's something like that. It's also the reason why it took nine sodding years to get a new Mechwarrior game, *grumbles* Blasted Microsoft *grumbles*, and don't get me started on that Harmony Gold BS... *grumbles*
At least MekTek was able to release Mechwarrior 4: mercenaries for free in 2010.
 

katsabas

New member
Apr 23, 2008
1,515
0
0
The problem isn't with companies like Bethesda or Rockstar. It is with companies that are owned by bigger ones that do absolutely nothing to contribute to the project except publish them. But there is a very fine point here that Jim may have missed. I am no expert but I do not think that developpers always have money to publish their own games, like the indie developpers. And when you wanna create something big, you have no choice but to turn to a publisher.

I gotta know though. Is giving up the rights to a title the only way for it to see the light of day ? Cause if yeah, publishers are holding devs by the balls and companies like Criterion, Bioware, Naughty Dog or even Infinity Ward will never be truly free to pursue their own concepts.

The video hits where it has to cause I have been thinking about this for some time. For example, what creative part of any Pixar movie had Disney involved ? Little to none, I bet.
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
FelixG said:
Sober Thal said:
Diana Kingston-Gabai said:
Sober Thal said:
What's wrong with that? Are publishers just supposed to gamble away money on possible crap product?
Why not? We (the customers) do...
How so? You mean the people that don't know how to research a product before they buy it?

Yeah, they gamble, and it's silly.
Yeah because those same publishers don't buy reviews or only release the polished bits for trailers...

Hell this site alone gave Dragon Age 2 a 5/5 and called it "a pinnacle of RPGs" Yet what was delivered was a game with mediocre story, copy paste dungeons, and waves of enemies that appear out of midair...

Yep research would have let you avoid that when reviewers are sooo objective.
Dragon Age 2 was a great game, worthy of it's praise from this site. Some reviewers like different things, which is why it's best to research your reviewers as well. You can't seriously be suggesting they were paid off, or that you couldn't find other reviewers who thought differently about Dragon Age 2...

Are you saying Jim was paid off because he liked CoD MW3? ( I agree with Jim about MW3 as well)

http://www.destructoid.com/review-call-of-duty-modern-warfare-3-215404.phtml

As for the trailers... of course they only show the best parts before release. If people weren't so impatient, and waited a day or two after release, they can find out plenty about a game.
 

scorptatious

The Resident Team ICO Fanboy
May 14, 2009
7,405
0
0
Metal Arms! One of my most favorite games of all time! :D

I had no idea there was a trilogy planned. I knew there was going to be a sequel, but not a trilogy. It's a real shame that the IP is left to rot though. I love that game.
 

Beryl77

New member
Mar 26, 2010
1,599
0
0
All this talk about those modern "pirates". Sigh, where are the good old times, where are the old-school pirates. Sailing the seas, wearing eye patches, having a talking parrot on the shoulder. Those were real men.

Anyway, let's throw my two cents to this controversial topic.
I agree on most what he's said.
I find it hard to see this as stealing, not that it's totally alright to use others ideas but I just can't see it as stealing. As long as it doesn't really harm anyone, I don't see it as a big problem. If someone pirated some stupid blockbuster movie from Hollywood, I couldn't care less. If it's a low budget indie movie and they need the money, then really go and give them your money if you like the movie. Those are the ones who need, not Hollywood in their current form.
Also, I find it funny that Hollywood whines so much about pirates although without using others ideas and breaking laws they wouldn't even exist. They did the same thing years ago and now they cry when it's affecting them. I can't take studios like that serious.

The RIAA and MPAA and so on, are a dying breed in our times anyway. They're from the last century who can't adapt to the change that's going on.
If the pirates you're fighting just offer a better service then maybe something is wrong on your end. Do something that makes the people come to you, don't force them because then they will always struggle.
Well, not that they're really fighting piracy. They just want to control the internet. That's what PIPA and SOPA are supposed to do. Give them the power that they don't have on the internet. It's obvious that they need the power they have in other parts of our life. Just look at how they threaten politicians who aren't corrupt enough to get bought. It's just ridiculous.
They're obsolete and if they don't change soon, they'll only be history.
 

Wolcik

New member
Jul 18, 2009
321
0
0
The best episode so far I must admit - and I liked quite a few of them. I'm guessing the quality is increasing - however I'd love to see Jim get someone to draw him pictures instead of those low quality panit doodles.
 

zelda2fanboy

New member
Oct 6, 2009
2,173
0
0
I wouldn't discount the "middlemen" too much. Yes, there does need to be significant reform regarding copyright ownership (which probably won't happen anytime soon since the middlemen have all da moneyz). The creator of Metal Arms didn't HAVE to give his intellectual property to his publisher. They just might not have given him the resources (people, money, facilities, equipment) to make the game if he hadn't. It doesn't make them thieves, it makes them a business. Had Metal Arms been a runaway success, would it have been fair for the rights to stay with the "creator" (one man in a team of dozens, if not hundreds) who just as easily might have said "fuck it" and kept the rights to the game himself and not make any more? You wouldn't be singing this tune had Vivendi/Sierra continued to publish Metal Arms games that were teh awesomesauce without the input of the guy who had the wildly original idea of giving robots guns.

I do like the idea of copyright reverting back to people responsible, rather than sitting in on a dusty shelf useless somewhere in the nether realm. But to determine something like creative ownership, you might need something like, say a union that has rules and stipulations about who is responsible for something. And even then with cases like SAG and the Writers Guild and the Directors Guild, it's hardly fair. See for example what happened with Roseanne not getting a lucrative "created by" credit on her own show with her own name, based off of her stand up comedy.

But to say mediafire or megaupload or rapidshare, who risked nothing, put up nothing, invested nothing, and are merely copying and pasting the work (of not just one person, but many people) and then charging people for that service, that is a form of theft. And it's not like these "legitimate" middlemen didn't pay for the ownership of these properties or don't deserve the rights to them. If you inherited a painting, should it be taken from you by force for the good of everyone else? If they keep these properties to themselves, it's their own financial loss.
 

The Last Nomad

Lost in Ethiopia
Oct 28, 2009
1,426
0
0
And I thought it was bad when copyright owners went on with an IP without the original creator, its nothing compared with the thievery you describe here Jim. Although, if that guy sold the rights to Metal Arms, then really they (Activision or whoever) do own it do they not? They are still acting asshole-ishly but they didn't steal anything.
 

Adam Jensen_v1legacy

I never asked for this
Sep 8, 2011
6,633
0
0
Fuck publishers. They're the reason gaming has turned to shit. There would be less piracy if they gave a fuck about the industry, but no. They only care about money. Old men who don't have a clue about gaming are running our industry.
 

wooty

Vi Britannia
Aug 1, 2009
4,252
0
0
This certainly has been the year for corporate hate.

Thank you Jim, sorry, THANK GOD FOR JIM, I now feel slightly less dirty for using MU for all my schoolgirl with a sword fighting demons and stuff programmes.
 

Ewyx

New member
Dec 3, 2008
375
0
0
Honestly, I lost all sympathy towards major publishers last night, while installing an EA game, that I legitimately bought from steam, they have the NERVE to ask me to activate it again?

Fuck you, fuck your retarded DRM system. I'm never buying anything by EA again. If they treat me like I'm a criminal, I'm going to be one. Psychology 101.

Also agreeing with Jim... new one for me.
 

Rad Party God

Party like it's 2010!
Feb 23, 2010
3,560
0
0
I used to pirate a shit ton of games back in the day and with the economy of my country, I don't blame anyone who does, but I'm trying to do the right thing, buying everything I can legally and if I can't pay for it, I just don't pirate it, period.

I learned the hard way, when I used to buy pirate DVDs of PC games, that I'm not getting this stuff at a discount, I'm paying the asshole who just burned the fucking disc and I'm helping him in making a living out of this, instead of giving my money to the developer who rightfully deserves every single penny.

I, too, am losing faith in major publishers, but that doesn't mean I'm going rampantly downloading every single game I come across, I just don't support neither the publishers (specifically EA, UbiSoft and Activision/Blizzard), nor the people who uploads their games in torrent sites, IE: The Pirates.
 

killercyclist

New member
Feb 12, 2011
112
0
0
man, when this series started i thought it would just be some sarcastic dude talking himself and his beliefs up, but over time jim has proved to me that he has a really firm grasp on the important issues of gaming today. i really think what he has to say is valuable and we should pay attention.
 

newdarkcloud

New member
Aug 2, 2010
452
0
0
Sober Thal said:
newdarkcloud said:
Sober Thal said:
Jimothy Sterling said:
Sober Thal said:
Fun fact. The artists and developers own 100% of their IP. They then decide to sell the rights away for money and more resources. Duh.
That's what happens when the rights-buyers have rigged the game in their favor before the artists create their art. Duh.
Creators have a choice to sign these contracts. Are we implying that these people who make games don't know how to read?
Publishers won't even look at a developer if the developer wants to keep the majority share of the rights to the IP. The only exception is when the developer has already become well known enough to have publishers compete for them.
What's wrong with that? Are publishers just supposed to gamble away money on possible crap product?
Isn't that the inherit risk of the medium? Games can be successes, flops, or somewhere in between. I'm not saying they don't deserve a share of the prophets and some control over the project. I'm saying they shouldn't have absolute power. It's there right to revoke their future funding if the game isn't panning out or if the developer is being lazy. It's their right to contract developers to make certain games. That's business, I've got no problem at all with that.

But instead of forcefully trying to acquire the rights with the current "sell us the IP or fuck off" style, it would be better to engender positive relationships to convince developers that they are getting the best deal possible by signing on with that publisher. It's the classic carrot or stick conundrum.
 

MetalDooley

Cwipes!!!
May 27, 2020
2,054
0
1
Country
Ireland
meganmeave said:
The reason I think it is still stealing to pirate a game like Metal Arms, is because the publisher that rightfully paid the creator for the rights to that game entered a contract saying, "I promise to give you money now, on the hopes that I can make a profit off of this thing in the future."
Activision own the rights to Metal Arms now despite the fact that they didn't put a cent into the development,publishing or marketing of the game.That's why Jim is saying he couldn't condemn anyone who pirated it now
 

EvilPicnic

New member
Sep 9, 2009
540
0
0
Fully in agreement with Jim on this one. And it applies to the 'music industry' too. Never before has so much new music been available to so many, and sales to gigs and concerts (as well as digital downloads) are increasing. Artists on average have more opportunities for success than they ever had before the advent of the internet, consumers are more knowledgeable, and business is booming.

So why all the doom and gloom in the media?

Because the 'music industry' (read: 'CD-manufacturers and general middle-men') is being cut out of the loop and they're kicking up a fuss. It's the raging against the dying of the light, and not because they can't profit from these new technologies, but because they won't. They're too old and fat and lazy too adapt, and in this Darwinian world if you don't adapt: you die.

New media ftw.
 

SenseOfTumour

New member
Jul 11, 2008
4,514
0
0
Also, how good to see someone reconsidering their opinions on anything without being slammed as a 'hypocrite' who does 'U-turns' on issues.

Sometimes maybe it's just a case that someone has done some thought and processed new information and come to a new conclusion. If only the papers and news corps could quit it, sometimes even politicians will admit they were wrong about something, and instead of the opinion, the critics are just obsessed that he's 'gone back on his word', when it wasn't his word, it was an opinion, opinions change.

Also, the whole industry has evolved, a friend and I were discussing out school years, and the case that you could buy a game on tape for £1.99 and it'd have an actual home address on the label, showing that it'd been created by some kid holed up in a bedroom somewhere.

Now it seems you need a good $100k just to get something to pass the criteria needed for XBLA, tho at least there's still Steam, not sure how hard it is to get something listed there.

I guess all we can hope for is that in 20 years or so the big companies are actually forced into either evolving or dying out as the irrelevant dinosaurs that they are.

Also, I've been banging on about how SOPA etc are not su much about money, but about the entertainment industry and their realisation and fear of losing control, which they slowly are.

As I've said, they could easily rake in millions just placing things online for worldwide release on the release day, with no DRM, priced fairly, and then who's rushing to a torrent when buying is easier? At present I've got DVDs I own that I've got rips of, because the rips are easier to watch, and don't inflict BS on me for 5 minutes before I can watch them.

The Metal Arms debacle is one more sign of this. It does Activision no good at all to hold the license, but if it was given back, and the artist and creator got a small team together to crack out an indie sequel to the license, Activision would have 'lost' the control of that game. Yet they don't want to risk investing in it either.

Is there really a reason for anyone's copyright to last more than 10 years? I may be persuaded to extend this for inventions, but art, if you've not squeezed some sales out of it in 10 years, then it's either not gonna sell, or some creepy art dealer's going to use your death to up the price.
 

Carnagath

New member
Apr 18, 2009
1,814
0
0
Robert B. Marks said:
1. Copyright IS about protecting creator's rights. However, 95% of it is not about protecting creator's rights from consumers. Most of copyright is a legal framework governing the interaction between those who create and those who distribute the creations, mainly during the contract negotiations. An example of the protection provided is to prevent a distributor from taking a creator's work, declining to publish that work, and then adding a new name to it and publishing it anyway. That goes both ways - another protection is to prevent a creator from selling exclusive rights to a work to one publisher, and then going behind that publisher's back and selling the same exclusive rights to another.
You are copypasting a definiton of the term "copyright". Is that necessary? We are well aware of it. Yes, part of it serves to govern the relationship between artist and publisher. Only part of it though.

Robert B. Marks said:
2. Copyright IS built so that the creative artist owns the copyright to his/her work upon completion of the work. In order for the creative artist to lose those rights, s/he has to sign them away. One of the reasons that there are literary agents is to protect authors from contracts that strip them of their rights to their own work. That the equivalent in the music industry often do not do the same is scandalous, to say the least.
It may be so for books, but, as you said, that's not as usual in the music industry and extremely unusual in the gaming industry, especially if we're talking about a new intellectual property that does not have a massive established fanbase, which means the artists are, in practice, stripped of most of their negotiative power.

Robert B. Marks said:
3. There are nasty companies out there with highly predatory practices interested only in their bottom line, 'tis true. The music industry is one of the worst out there in that. But that's a problem with industry practices, not copyright law. To say that it's a problem with copyright is like saying that a security company failing to call the police on time during a burglary is a problem with anti-theft laws. Requiring creative artists to sign their entire copyright to a work away in the music, film, and software industries is a nasty industry practice, but it is an INDUSTRY practice.
And this industry is seeking to shape the copyright laws to utterly fit their agenda, in a disgusting, unethical, invasive, totalitarian fashion. To further your analogy, when the burglar becomes rich and influential enough to shape anti-theft laws in a manner that allows him to work together with the police and also to be allowed to shoot innocent pedestrians on his way to the crime scene, then it's clearly time to go after the burglar and the people who are empowering him.

Robert B. Marks said:
4. If anybody wants to say that game companies are not injured by computer game piracy, I would ask them to take a moment and count the number of PC game companies that hopped ship to the smaller console market over the last 10 years. Compared to 2002, the computer game world is considerably sparser than it used to be.
Hmm... Nope, getting nothing. Do tell. Which PC game companies jumped ship? I can't think of a single one that abandoned the PC market and devoted themselves exclusively to consoles. Many of them realized the market expansion in consoles and turned their releases multiplatform, sure, some of them may even have decided to not release some of their titles on the PC due to specific logistics of those particular titles, but can't think of a single one that has written the PC off. Example of the above: Rockstar. Yes, they did not release Red Dead Redemption for the PC, but they did release LA Noire and will release Max Payne 3. I can however think of a multitude of examples of studios that were bought by behemoth publishers over the last 10 years, who agreed to fund and promote their projects, but instead cannibalized them and their intellectual property. How ironic...

Robert B. Marks said:
5. Publishers are important, and when doing their jobs properly can provide a level of quality control, distribution support, and marketing that a creative artist alone cannot. To say that in the past the need for distributors was an illusion is ludicrous, particularly considering that the internet has only been available to the general public for the last 20 years or so. It may be easier to self-publish now, but it wasn't in the past, and many of the functions of publishers and distributors are still done better by distributors than by the creative artist alone, if for no other reason than the distributor generally has more resources.

Anyway, that corrects the more grievous misconceptions. I really wish that people would do their research sometimes.
What's your point? Yes, publishers are awesome when they are doing their jobs correctly. Not so much when they devour artists and try to establish a worldwide police-state of complete censorship through corruption and lobbying. We're not taking a history lesson here, we're in the present, and we should react and criticize accordingly.
 

Ickorus

New member
Mar 9, 2009
2,887
0
0
Sober Thal said:
Louzerman102 said:
Sober Thal said:
Jimothy Sterling said:
Sober Thal said:
Jimothy Sterling said:
Sober Thal said:
Fun fact. The artists and developers own 100% of their IP. They then decide to sell the rights away for money and more resources. Duh.
That's what happens when the rights-buyers have rigged the game in their favor before the artists create their art. Duh.
Creators have a choice to sign these contracts. Are we implying that these people who make games don't know how to read?
It is a Hobson's choice. Especially before digital distribution became much more widespread. Sure, they could "choose" not to go through a publisher, but in an industry run by the publishers, what choice is that?

The deck is stacked in the favor of publishers. For the longest time, they've owned the deck, dealt the cards, owned the cards, and bought anybody holding the cards. Some of us don't think that should continue.
Hobson's choice, eh? Damn right! It's their money! You want their money, you agree to what they offer. If Valve is such an evil entity (publisher) why do people bend over backwards to praise them?

The 'artists' need to wise up if this is as bad for them as people seem to be saying.
You're confusing what steam does. Microsoft owns the halo IP. EA owns the dead space IP. Tell me how Steam owns Space Pirates and Zombies, Solar 2, Dungeons of Dredmor, or any other indie Game. Jim's statements were never against valve.
Valve is a publisher too. I realize they don't publish every game on STEAM. Jim makes it sound as if EVERY publisher is evil, and devs have no choice in the matter. Devs need to wise up. Look at Notch and Minecraft. It isn't easy to get your name out their, nor should it be. You pay these big named companies for work they do. No money? Sell the rights, or do the work yourself (if every publisher is soooo evil).
Valve self-publish their own games but that doesn't make them a publisher, I mean, Mojang did the same with Minecraft.

Technically Valve is a very very large indie developer.
 

robinkom

New member
Jan 8, 2009
655
0
0
You can see this sometimes on abandonware sites that list an old DOS game for reference (not download) and link a company's official site who still owns the copyright to the IP but is doing fuck all with it. Fucking kills me, the fact that if you tried to find a pirated version of that ancient 8-bit CGA DOS game elsewhere that you could potentially get slapped with a fine if caught.

If we the gaming community ever needed an official mouthpiece to speak for us in a serious matter to any of the powers that be, I wouldn't mind Jim Sterling being that man.
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
FelixG said:
Sober Thal said:
Jimothy Sterling said:
Sober Thal said:
Fun fact. The artists and developers own 100% of their IP. They then decide to sell the rights away for money and more resources. Duh.
That's what happens when the rights-buyers have rigged the game in their favor before the artists create their art. Duh.
Creators have a choice to sign these contracts. Are we implying that these people who make games don't know how to read?
Yeah they have a massive choice don't they? "Oh you don't sign the contract? You get no funding, you don't get distribution, you don't get advertisement. Have fun making your game jackoff."

OT: Thank god for jim, at least someone can admit when they are wrong instead of acting like the publishers need little white knights to defend them from the big bad pirates
Because no independent company has ever made a name for themselves in games without the help of a big monied publisher. Not Infocom, not Sierra On-Line, not Bioware. Not even Activision. All just figments of our imagination folks. None of these companies actually exist today because they didn't get big funding from other publishers, and according to Felix, that makes them impossible.
 

Radioactive Kitten

New member
Nov 16, 2009
45
0
0
If the original developers still get a cut out of the sale, I think it's wrong to pirate. However, I have no qualms with it if the game is old and the developers are long gone or are in such a position that they won't see a penny from the sale of their game.

For example, I don't think Smilebit gets hurt if someone pirates Jet Set Radio. That game has been out of print for ages, they have long since been gobbled up by Sega and are now charged with nothing but churning out Mario and Sonic at the Olympics games, and it's virtually impossible to buy the game in such a manner where any of the profit would go back to them anyway. If Jet Set Radio got a digital/HD remake, my stance would be quite different since at least purchases would tell Sega that there's interest in the series.
 

MB202

New member
Sep 14, 2008
1,157
0
0
lol "Do what you want 'cause a pirate is free!" It's funny, yet at the same time wrong... but not too wrong...
 

Not-here-anymore

In brightest day...
Nov 18, 2009
3,029
0
0
Hitchmeister said:
On the other hand, these big publishers didn't seize the rights away from creators at gunpoint. They walked up and waved a bag of cash in front of them. It seemed like a good deal at the time, and I have a hard time feeling sympathy for anyone who sold their soul, or IP, to EA.*

Then on the third hand, you get stuff like a band posting videos they created themselves of their own music on Youtube and getting takedown orders from their record company because they don't have the rights to promote themselves in any way that might interfere with the company's profits. Yeah, screw that.




*I know EA wasn't actually involved in the example in the video, but I wanted to draw a selling your soul to the devil analogy, and EA just fit so well.
I was informed by a professor today that he couldn't just give us the lecture notes for the course. Because the course is heavily, heavily based on a textbook that he wrote, he's been informed that distributing the notes would be a breach of copyright.
 

Bostur

New member
Mar 14, 2011
1,070
0
0
Looking forward to the next episode.

The idea of Copyright is a good one, but it has turned into an uncontrollable beast doing the opposite of what it was intended for.
 

Techno Squidgy

New member
Nov 23, 2010
1,045
0
0
Well said sir, well fucking said.

As a likely future game developer this has been very enlightening. Copyright legislation is indeed bullshit and needs to be thrown out and rewritten.

I applaud your efforts and your sterling message.

 

Baresark

New member
Dec 19, 2010
3,908
0
0
I agree with Jim 100%, which is a scary prospect in itself. It is illegal, but I get tired of people using the whole "developers deserved to get paid for their work" thing. That is true, they do deserve credit and profits from their work. But when Bungie made Halo, they were forced to sell the rights to Microsoft in order to see that work realized. And there it is. The standard contract for any publishing company seems to be that the studio gets exclusive rights to the contents of your work. That is why this age of information technology is amazing. You are constantly seeing fantastic games come out on their own without the use of a large publisher. Hell, look at what Mojang has done without the use of outside publishers.

It's the same across the board as far as artistic endeavors are concerned. All the music that is heard on the radio is owned by the record label, and not the artist (with rare exception). Furthermore, as Jim states, people who have no right to any creative work what so ever own rights to different properties. Michael Jackson owned the rights to the Beatles albums, Bill Cosby owns the rights to The little Rascals and EA owns Battlefield despite never having put a single creative impulse towards the work.

I do not condone piracy at all, but I don't condemn people as horrible human beings if they participate in it. They are not good clean pure souls, but the aren't the 8 headed monster people make them out to be either. And it's not the fault of pirates if game companies treat their customers like shit. Just like I don't go to jail if my best friend robs a McDonalds and gets caught with that DNA security system. :p
 

Elyxard

New member
Dec 12, 2010
137
0
0
I think about the most important franchise to me, the Xeno- series.

I have to really feel sorry for Monolith Soft. Despite creating Xenogears, SE owns the rights to that. What have they done with it? Just dropped it on PSN and that's the end of that franchise. Despite creating Xenosaga, Namco owns the rights to it. What has Namco done with that copyright? Diddly squat, at best we'll get a digital download for that too someday at best.

Monolith Soft created those worlds from scratch, yet they can't even touch them. SE and Namco can either profit endlessly from Monolith Soft's work or just leave it to rot, which is exactly what they're doing. It's depressing to no end. If I worked that hard to create a world and characters like that, I would be more than heartbroken to not even be legally able to goddamn talk about them ever again.

That's what makes the SOPA bull**** all the more vile. This has nothing to do with the creative culture, it's all about the greed and business culture, and congress thinks that's more important.

On the other end of the spectrum. I have not "pirated" a game in over ten years, and those were NES roms that you absolutely could not ever get anywhere else at the time. I absolutely despise people who pirate brand new games on release, I think they are despicable, self-entitled bastards. If you don't like the corporation, don't even play the damn game. You're only convincing them that you actually do want their products, and that they need to crack down even harder on piracy when they see the torrent download number.

Support the companies that you love and love you back. Ignore the ones that only see dollar signs and shareholders.
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
J03bot said:
I was informed by a professor today that he couldn't just give us the lecture notes for the course. Because the course is heavily, heavily based on a textbook that he wrote, he's been informed that distributing the notes would be a breach of copyright.
Yet another example of why you should be extremely careful when signing away your copyright for money/distribution. Not an example of a problem with copyright.

Here's the thing folks, the contracts made to give copyright away are just contracts. They can be modified by either party before signing. So if a small indie game developer doesn't want to see their IP languish, make that a non-negotiable part of the agreement: "The copyright purchaser or designate agrees that if no product is released using this IP within 5 years of the date of this contract, copyright reverts to the original owner."

Start with that as your base, and negotiate it down to, ".. 5 years of the date of this contract, the purchaser agrees to return the IP to the original owner upon repayment to the copyright purchaser of the sum agreed to in this contract."

If a professor wants to be able to continue distributing his lecture notes to students taking his class? He needs to include that in the contract. Otherwise, he needs to do what most professors do anyway: simply put the textbook on the required materials and get a cut from the students purchasing it. If he feels really badly about that, I'm sure the class wouldn't mind him giving him his share of the royalties he received back to them.
 

somonels

New member
Oct 12, 2010
1,209
0
0
Jim, I'm sorry your good twin brother got busted.




Also, Welcome to the dark side
 

Luke5515

New member
Aug 25, 2008
1,197
0
0
I completely agree. Half the world sees piracy as akin to murder. Piracy is not all bad. This site has some of the worst offenders. I've gotten paragraphs saying that I had bad morals for not thinking that piracy was bad. Christ, you'd think pirates killed their families the way these people talked.
 

Baresark

New member
Dec 19, 2010
3,908
0
0
J03bot said:
I was informed by a professor today that he couldn't just give us the lecture notes for the course. Because the course is heavily, heavily based on a textbook that he wrote, he's been informed that distributing the notes would be a breach of copyright.
There was a Harvard professor that wouldn't allow his students from various classes compare notes on an online forum because he copyrights his lectures (he would record both by video and audio all his lectures). He has copyrighted his knowledge and it's not allowed to be discusses among his students in a forum where it's easiest for them to discuss and understand the material. Since no one would ever knowingly make a law that inhibits students from learning, I'm relatively sure he is gaming the system. Only, the students are smarter than the professors. When you attend a college or university, you are not paying for knowledge (contrary to popular belief), you are paying for a degree and nothing else. Especially since that knowledge is already pretty much everywhere. The way I see it, if you are charging $200 for a text book, the people who bought it have purchased a right to go through whatever means necessary to understand said book, including discussion among friends.

Also, as the copyright holder he could distribute notes to his class. He only needs to seek his own permission. Guy sounds like a huge dick who lies because he doesn't know what he is talking about. He isn't infringing on his copyright. And furthermore, anyone could distribute notes based on his work provided he was cited for it.
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
Sober Thal said:
Jimothy Sterling said:
Sober Thal said:
Fun fact. The artists and developers own 100% of their IP. They then decide to sell the rights away for money and more resources. Duh.
That's what happens when the rights-buyers have rigged the game in their favor before the artists create their art. Duh.
Creators have a choice to sign these contracts. Are we implying that these people who make games don't know how to read?
Oh, come on. So the fact they have a "choice" makes them exempt from any right to complain? The reason they sell the rights to these people is to exchange a portion of the profit for attention and support, and that's the way it should be.

A choice between "selling the rights to someone who can make your game huge" and "toiling over a game which you're not sure you can finish and which probably won't get the attention it needs to make a profit anyway" isn't really a choice at all.
 

Dastardly

Imaginary Friend
Apr 19, 2010
2,420
0
0
Jim Sterling said:
Piracy Episode One - Copyright

Piracy is one of those issues that will absolutely never die, like the secrets of the Bermuda Triangle of the truth of the Zelda Timeline. Jim Sterling has always had a set view on piracy -- it's not the worst crime in the world, but it's selfish theft nonetheless. However, in the wake of corporate attempts to buy our legal system, he has reexamined the piracy issue and come away with a rather altered stance.

This is the first episode in a miniature series looking at the problem of videogame piracy.

Watch Video
Regarding copyright:

You're oversimplifying things a bit, and you're attacking this from the wrong angle.

Publishers exist because the average Joe once had a problem getting his goods to market. A composer would spend his time and energy writing the music... but then he'd need to find someone with the equipment to print, copy, and sell that music. That would take time and energy (and money) the composer didn't have.

So instead, the composer would sell the copyright to a Publisher -- basically, an investor whose entire job it was to have the print/copy/market equipment and know-how. This was mutually beneficial to the artist and publisher.

The artist wouldn't have to worry about the logistics or expense of publication. And in exchange, he would give over distribution rights (and occasionally agree to produce a certain number of other works within a given time period, to present a more long-term investment). Over time, artists could even rely on the strength of a publisher's name to give more weight to a new product -- I might not know your music, but I know your publisher is pretty good at spotting good music, so I'm more inclined to look your way...

The publisher wouldn't have to worry about the creation process. And in exchange, they would promote and distribute the composer's work. Of course, the publisher would own the rights, to ensure the long-term viability of the arrangement -- you wouldn't want a composer to use your resources to get well-known, and then yank back his entire catalog to sell on his own, leaving you with no return on investment.

FAST FORWARD:

In this age, getting your goods to market isn't as big a problem. On the internet, David can be every bit as big as Goliath in the right circumstances. So there is less need for a publisher, overall. It hasn't evaporated completely, however.

And, given the ease of digital distribution and internet marketing, publishers have had to add little caveats and addenda to the contracts to make the investment "safer." They might oblige you for a few deadline-heavy sequels, or they might require that you sell the entire IP to them. And if things go sour, they're likely not going to give it all back so that you can then go make money under some other publisher -- It's not about you, though, but rather about not feeding competing publishers.

IF YOU WANT TO FIX IT:

Publishers are going to do what publishers do. Until creators stop letting them. Creators are who you need to target.

1. Encourage creators to forego publishers in favor of cheap, effective distribution methods. Why pay to have a CD made when you can just sell the .mp3's on your own site?

2. Encourage creators that want publishers to be more forward-thinking in the terms to which they agree. Don't sign contracts in desperation or naivete. "Hey, if there is a period of X months in which you do not move on this IP, we get back the name/characters/etc. You keep the rights to previous installments, but we're then allowed to go forward with the IP in other venues."

You touch on this in the video, but really it's the main point. Make publishers obsolete, and the problem is solved. The law isn't the problem, as much as the contracts under the law are. Go after the creators, get them to "kick the habit" -- no demand, no supply.
 

Aardvaarkman

I am the one who eats ants!
Jul 14, 2011
1,262
0
0
One aspect that Jim misses is that outfits like MegaUpload are making money from piracy. It's one thing to share a copy of a game with your friends, it's quite another to run a racket where you are profiting from piracy.

In fact, the for-profit piracy sites are doing exactly what Jim condemns the big publishers of doing - making money off other people's work. Only in their case, they aren't even paying the creators a single penny, and they certainly aren't investing large sums of money and risk in having new games created.

Do publishers act shittily towards artists and customers? Hell yes. But the commercial pirates are far worse in their contempt for everything. Some of them even try to play the "fighting for the little people" card at the same time as turning a quick buck via shady means.
 

Meggiepants

Not a pigeon roost
Jan 19, 2010
2,536
0
0
MetalDooley said:
meganmeave said:
The reason I think it is still stealing to pirate a game like Metal Arms, is because the publisher that rightfully paid the creator for the rights to that game entered a contract saying, "I promise to give you money now, on the hopes that I can make a profit off of this thing in the future."
Activision own the rights to Metal Arms now despite the fact that they didn't put a cent into the development,publishing or marketing of the game.That's why Jim is saying he couldn't condemn anyone who pirated it now
They still paid for it. Whether or not they shelled out for the production of it in anyway, they paid money for it.

Does that mean you don't really own the video games you purchase because you didn't pay anything to produce them? That we shouldn't have the right to sell them once we are done?

Does that mean anyone who owns a used house or car, I can take it without any claim of moral wrongdoing? Because the people who bought that used home or car didn't pay anything toward the original creation of it.

Transfer of property is transfer of property. You can own something without having created it. We do it all the time, every day.
 

Hosker

New member
Aug 13, 2010
1,177
0
0
Yes, we'll show those publishers what for by pirating all our games! Oh, all the publishers have gone out of business? There are barely any games any more because no one can afford to make them? Whoops!
 

BrotherRool

New member
Oct 31, 2008
3,834
0
0
Yeah I couldn't get through this video. I hope you turned it around at the end, but if I'd believed that I would have kept on watching.

I think maybe you've got some problems with dealing with authority? I'll say this, last time I commented on your video it's because you were being a fake conformingly non-conformist hipster without adding any real thought or value to your video, and at least it seems like here you had a general thought out opinion, even if it's not one I can agree with in any respect. I guess you were maybe still a bit 'Occupy Wall Street' the only thing wrong with the world is people being richer than me etc but you sounded quite genuine
 

Jonny49

New member
Mar 31, 2009
1,250
0
0
I, for one, will destroy all those who prohibited the creation of the Metal Arms sequels. That game was actually awesome.
 

Comrade_Beric

Jacobin
May 10, 2010
396
0
0
Sober Thal said:
FelixG said:
Sober Thal said:
Jimothy Sterling said:
Sober Thal said:
Fun fact. The artists and developers own 100% of their IP. They then decide to sell the rights away for money and more resources. Duh.
That's what happens when the rights-buyers have rigged the game in their favor before the artists create their art. Duh.
Creators have a choice to sign these contracts. Are we implying that these people who make games don't know how to read?
Yeah they have a massive choice don't they? "Oh you don't sign the contract? You get no funding, you don't get distribution, you don't get advertisement. Have fun making your game jackoff."

OT: Thank god for jim, at least someone can admit when they are wrong instead of acting like the publishers need little white knights to defend them from the big bad pirates
Notch is such a jackoff, isn't he...
And if the publishers had had their way, the things that made Notch's success possible (word of mouth through social media such as facebook, twitter, and this very site right here) would all be gone. One more victim in the corporate crusade to stop people on the internet from doing anything that doesn't make the publishers money.
 

Pandabearparade

New member
Mar 23, 2011
962
0
0
Dammit, Jim, I thought your line about being right about everything was just blustery bullshit, but you keep proving me wrong. Thank God for you.

Your view isn't going to be popular around these parts (mainly because you get banned if you don't call pirates baby-eating scum around here), but you're completely right.

Anyone want to time how long it takes for the Escapist to shut that video town? I'm guessing less than a week.
 

Pandabearparade

New member
Mar 23, 2011
962
0
0
Duol said:
Stealing a loaf of bread from a rich person is the same as stealing it from a hobo.
No.

I think 'no' really sums it up pretty well, but I need to add more to avoid a 'low content post', so I'll add that this logic is morally bankrupt. Stealing is never 'good', but stealing a Whopper from a starving man and stealing a Whopper from Jabba the Hutt are two completely different things ethically.
 

drthmik

New member
Jul 29, 2011
142
0
0
Mahha said:
Did you know that copyright law was not meant to create huge profits?
The original law was meant as a protection of intellectual property for a period of max 28 years, as to prevent stealing of new ideas and after that period ANYONE was permitted to change alter and publish new stories based on the works without permission. It's a pretty awesome idea at the core, smart and creative people get incentive to make new shit and after 28 year (lets face it if you haven't been working on new ip or updated your old ip it's very unlikely that a sudden bolt of creativity will hit your brain and you'll start expanding on your 28 old year book or whatever) fans can start tangents and new stories based on you work. This was so that no one person could live a whole life with just one contribution to society.
Now for sake of an example let's look at the creations of Walt Disney. Do you even remember when was the last time a good Mickey Mouse cartoon, book etc. came out? Well I don't and I fucking love Mickey Mouse. The thing is that by extending copyright ad infinitum you prevent eager and capable people bringing new life to old creations.

here's a nice video that explains it:

I don't know how this would relate to more modern problems such as piracy, but I'm sure if the 28 years rule was still in effect things would be a lot different.
Yep, furthermore the owner of said copyright had to PAY the government for the privilege but if you were still making a ton of money after 28 years you could pay to get another 28 year extension. But that was it.
 

draythefingerless

New member
Jul 10, 2010
539
0
0
Robert B. Marks said:
I managed to get about six minutes in before I had to stop watching - just too many misconceptions about copyright and the industry. My background is as an author and the owner of a small publishing company, so I deal with copyright on a regular basis. So, to correct some of the misconceptions in the first six minutes:

1. Copyright IS about protecting creator's rights. However, 95% of it is not about protecting creator's rights from consumers. Most of copyright is a legal framework governing the interaction between those who create and those who distribute the creations, mainly during the contract negotiations. An example of the protection provided is to prevent a distributor from taking a creator's work, declining to publish that work, and then adding a new name to it and publishing it anyway. That goes both ways - another protection is to prevent a creator from selling exclusive rights to a work to one publisher, and then going behind that publisher's back and selling the same exclusive rights to another.

2. Copyright IS built so that the creative artist owns the copyright to his/her work upon completion of the work. In order for the creative artist to lose those rights, s/he has to sign them away. One of the reasons that there are literary agents is to protect authors from contracts that strip them of their rights to their own work. That the equivalent in the music industry often do not do the same is scandalous, to say the least.

3. There are nasty companies out there with highly predatory practices interested only in their bottom line, 'tis true. The music industry is one of the worst out there in that. But that's a problem with industry practices, not copyright law. To say that it's a problem with copyright is like saying that a security company failing to call the police on time during a burglary is a problem with anti-theft laws. Requiring creative artists to sign their entire copyright to a work away in the music, film, and software industries is a nasty industry practice, but it is an INDUSTRY practice.

4. If anybody wants to say that game companies are not injured by computer game piracy, I would ask them to take a moment and count the number of PC game companies that hopped ship to the smaller console market over the last 10 years. Compared to 2002, the computer game world is considerably sparser than it used to be.

5. Publishers are important, and when doing their jobs properly can provide a level of quality control, distribution support, and marketing that a creative artist alone cannot. To say that in the past the need for distributors was an illusion is ludicrous, particularly considering that the internet has only been available to the general public for the last 20 years or so. It may be easier to self-publish now, but it wasn't in the past, and many of the functions of publishers and distributors are still done better by distributors than by the creative artist alone, if for no other reason than the distributor generally has more resources.

Anyway, that corrects the more grievous misconceptions. I really wish that people would do their research sometimes.
i was gonna post this stuff, but you nailed it before i could.

might i add that(im not americna, im european) copyright law is not ENTIRELY passable. copyright law is divided into patrimonial and moral right. the creator of IP is always, ALWAYS, ALWAYS, owner, forever, even after his death, of the moral rights. these include the rights to unallowing the damaging, changing, and titularity of the IP. this means that without his consent, the IP can never be damaged, changed or taken his signature from it. patrimonial right is what is sold. this includes the rights to make money out of it basically, the right to distribute it and such.
 

Formica Archonis

Anonymous Source
Nov 13, 2009
2,312
0
0
Three pages into a discussion of copyright and corporate abuses.

Repeated insistence that content creators always have the rights to the works they make, until they sell them.

Not a single mention of the concept of a work for hire [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Work_for_hire].

Huh.
 

FoolKiller

New member
Feb 8, 2008
2,409
0
0
While I disagree with some of his message, I do agree that I hate big companies hoarding licenses.

Surprise, surprise. I have an EA example of them using it to squash the competition.

Back in 2005 there were two main competitors in sports games: EA and 2K. 2K had cleverly gotten the license to use ESPN for a couple of years while making some great games. What does EA do to compete?

They purchased the ESPN license for a ludicrous sum of money, and then squashed it. They wanted the association of ESPN and 2K games to vanish while people still thought 2K and ESPN were one entity. Only in 2009 did games start showing up with the ESPN presentation.

I also don't think that Jim was correct about the rights being time limited and then reverting back to the creator.

There should be a stagnation or good will clause in there somewhere though. Basically that if there is no progress towards using the license, then it can go back to the artist (if alive)
 

Robert B. Marks

New member
Jun 10, 2008
340
0
0
Carnagath said:
Robert B. Marks said:
4. If anybody wants to say that game companies are not injured by computer game piracy, I would ask them to take a moment and count the number of PC game companies that hopped ship to the smaller console market over the last 10 years. Compared to 2002, the computer game world is considerably sparser than it used to be.
Hmm... Nope, getting nothing. Do tell. Which PC game companies jumped ship? I can't think of a single one that abandoned the PC market and devoted themselves exclusively to consoles. Many of them realized the market expansion in consoles and turned their releases multiplatform, sure, some of them may even have decided to not release some of their titles on the PC due to specific logistics of those particular titles, but can't think of a single one that has written the PC off. Example of the above: Rockstar. Yes, they did not release Red Dead Redemption for the PC, but they did release LA Noire and will release Max Payne 3. I can however think of a multitude of examples of studios that were bought by behemoth publishers over the last 10 years, who agreed to fund and promote their projects, but instead cannibalized them and their intellectual property. How ironic...
I'm not going to reply in this thread more than once - I have found that online arguments don't tend to be worth the time. But, if you want your example, here's one: Epic. They started as a PC company called Epic Megagames, and have since moved to consoles. Their console titles do get PC releases, but by a different company.

But, if you really want a better picture, read this: http://www.tweakguides.com/Piracy_5.html

That link is from a website that did a proper analysis of the numbers, and talked about why the migration from a PC market measured in billions of PCs to a console market of under 100 million consoles took place.

And that's all I have to say on the subject.
 

Kenjitsuka

New member
Sep 10, 2009
3,051
0
0
"like the secrets of the Bermuda Triangle of the truth of the Zelda Timeline."
I think you meant "or" and not "of", writer of the video blurb. Either way, you should be aware your Escapist buddies already noted an Official Zelda timeline BOOK was published by Nintendo... So that's become a moot issue...
 

rankfx

New member
Jul 24, 2010
29
0
0
And this is where we see what SOPA and PIPA were really about- you couldn't be attached to any other company if you wanted to distribute your own work on the internet because then the other company would have the site taken down. This was their plan to kill online distribution.

Looks like ESA has looked at the amount of money the RIAA and MPAA have and decided they want in on that.
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
I hate all these mergers. I miss Sierra a lot, The Realm was my first MMO. I also miss 3D0, and the Might and Magic franchise.

Come back T.T

Also, just wondering... coincidence?


 

Redd the Sock

New member
Apr 14, 2010
1,088
0
0
I think people going off on copyright law miss the point. Piracy get's the "theft" label because of the claim that any download is a lost sale. But what about when the product isn't being made available and probably won't, something us anime fans have been saying for years. I download a lot of older anime just because legal issues keep region 1 releases from happening. Held IPs are the same problem, they aren't selling to me, so what am I costing them by downloading. Why hold the IP at all if you aren't going to use it, unless we're right and it's to keep the property from going elsewhere and becoming competetion. It actually stifles IP by taking something permenently off the table for use.

Without rejecting the idea of copyright law, I do support a use it or lose it idea. It becomes fair game if not used or in active development for 5 years. Either some good ideas will be put back into the hands of someone willing to use them, or everything will be on PSN just to retain the rights.
 

EvilPicnic

New member
Sep 9, 2009
540
0
0
Nasrin said:
Weirdly, I had this exact thought whilst watching the video: 'Damn, I've never noticed before that Jim Stirling looks like a slightly larger version of Garth Merenghi...'
 

The Artificially Prolonged

Random Semi-Frequent Poster
Jul 15, 2008
2,755
0
0
Interesting points Jim. I to long for the day that publishers, record labels and movie studios are no longer relevant. However the price of making a AAA means that the video game publishers will be around for awhile yet.

I really do think creators of IPs should retain their rights in some form, unless they sell it on to another party. And I'd suggest a similar thing to music rights in the UK where by the rights expire so many years after the song was released and moves into the public domain. This would games like Metal Arms sitting in a publishers attic forever never to be used again.
 

DeadlyYellow

New member
Jun 18, 2008
5,141
0
0
Sober Thal said:
Fun fact. The artists and developers own 100% of their IP. They then decide to sell the rights away for money and more resources. Duh.
If I remember right, companies can actually seize any creative works you make while in their employ. So if you spend your time off making an indie title in your basement, guess who gets to claim a free IP.

Not so big a deal for people intentionally trying to sell their ideas, but a hindrance for any programmer or artist with higher aspirations.
 

JasonBurnout16

New member
Oct 12, 2009
386
0
0
Thats an interesting way to look at the argument and to some extent I do agree with you.

However I still believe that Piracy is stealing - it is still the individuals choice. I would much rather they went and brought a pre-owned game than stole it. At least the money then goes towards a shop such as GAMEUK or Gamestop and keeps them going. Stealing it benefits no one but the stealer.

Slightly off topic but I do have a question on piracy. Say someone was telling an unpracticed story and without their knowledge someone was writing it down. That person then published it without the knowledge of the teller. Would that be wrong to copyright in any way?
 

xXAsherahXx

New member
Apr 8, 2010
1,799
0
0
I agree with essentially all of his points. I don't have any sympathy for any corporations who get upset of pirates stealing games that don't hurt them at all. However, I tend to have a little disdain for people who pirate new games, ones that have been out for about a month or so.

I hope the laws change soon to give the artist the copyright instead of the developer to squeeze money out of. I wonder how Ubisoft does their business. I hope they aren't gonna screw around with Assassin's Creed. They haven't yet but there's always that possibility.
 

neoontime

I forgot what this was before...
Jul 10, 2009
3,786
0
0
I hate to curse but Jim brought something back up.
Fuck you Activision and Sierra. I loved Metal Arms but you guys have way to much shit for brains to understand that your just being assholes. You do make the point that it is justified to intentionally screw shitty companies like you, but I wish there were better ways to make you hurt. Until then, fuck you.
[h4]FUCK YOU[/h4]
 

Nocola

New member
Aug 10, 2009
169
0
0
Well all I have to say is this video had about 5 too many dildos than I required it to have.
 

lacktheknack

Je suis joined jewels.
Jan 19, 2009
19,316
0
0
Diana Kingston-Gabai said:
Sober Thal said:
How so? You mean the people that don't know how to research a product before they buy it?

Yeah, they gamble, and it's silly.
I fail to see how any amount of research would've stopped customers from shelling out substantial amounts of money for products like "Elemental: War of Magic" or "Amy", to name just a few recent duds...
My brain exploded.

http://www.metacritic.com/game/pc/elemental-war-of-magic
http://www.metacritic.com/game/xbox-360/amy

ONE STEP STOP.

And Amy is not a "substantial" amount of money. It's the same as a full meal at McDonalds. I'm guessing that you don't do ANY research at all, since it doesn't work? :mad:
 

Frotality

New member
Oct 25, 2010
982
0
0
that is actually damn brilliant. companies have gone to such disingenuous extremes to protect their own dated breadmaking tactics that it is no longer possible to feel bad when someone "steals" from them.

its like if someone broke into your house and stole a jar a raspberry jam, and you went on a hissy fit, pouring billions into campaigning for a bill that would give you the right to arrest anyone when the same brand of jam in their fridge, hiding behind some notion of protecting your right to delicious bagel spread.

im sorry you lost your jam, but for fucks sake chill out.
 

Bostur

New member
Mar 14, 2011
1,070
0
0
JasonBurnout16 said:
Slightly off topic but I do have a question on piracy. Say someone was telling an unpracticed story and without their knowledge someone was writing it down. That person then published it without the knowledge of the teller. Would that be wrong to copyright in any way?
I think the first person to publish the story would count as the author. Publishing is a broad term though, if the person who told the story did it in front of a public audience it would probably count as publishing.
 

Itsthefuzz

New member
Apr 1, 2010
221
0
0
Sober Thal said:
Dragon Age 2 was a great game
After browsing these forums for quite some time... I honestly, until now, didn't know you had a sense of humor.
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
DeadlyYellow said:
Sober Thal said:
Fun fact. The artists and developers own 100% of their IP. They then decide to sell the rights away for money and more resources. Duh.
If I remember right, companies can actually seize any creative works you make while in their employ. So if you spend your time off making an indie title in your basement, guess who gets to claim a free IP.

Not so big a deal for people intentionally trying to sell their ideas, but a hindrance for any programmer or artist with higher aspirations.
You remember wrong.

Unless your contract with the employer specifically includes such clauses, in which case they aren't "seizing" anything, because you agreed they had ownership when you started working for them.

And yes, for people who are working in tech companies, language of this sort in the contract is fairly common. That's why you hear of people (like, say, Gabe Newell) leaving their jobs (like, say, at Microsoft) to form their own companies (like, say, Valve) before going forward with their development ideas.
 

Callate

New member
Dec 5, 2008
5,118
0
0
Copyright law is seriously screwed up. As are the ways in which many content creators are forced to negotiate if they want their product to get advertised and distributed through mainstream channels.

Consider for a moment this business with Sony and Spider-Man. Sony is making a new Spider-Man movie because if they don't, they lose their right to the license back to Marvel.

That's the way it should work, but that's not the standard. That happened because a company like Marvel has the money and clout to negotiate something like that with another big company like Sony.

As it stands, copyright on an IP can last for over a hundred years. Long after the death of its creators, a corporation can still make a buck on Mickey Mouse or Superman... And stomp on a day-care center for painting one of those characters on their wall without authorization.

In at least one sense, Jim is spot-on. SOPA and PIPA are to a great extent more about controlling the means of distribution than actual copyright infringement. About old-media companies sinking their claws into new-media ones to prevent themselves from sliding into irrelevance, any wounds they inflict on the upstarts in the process being a bonus.

To be clear: Minecraft is the exception, not the rule. There are plenty of developers selling their games on Steam who languish in obscurity, and it's not because their work isn't any good; it's still very difficult for a small, independent development team to draw the attention to be successful. Which leads many back to the big publishers and those Faustian bargains to raise development and advertising capital at the cost of losing their hard work.

Sober Thal said:
newdarkcloud said:
Sober Thal said:
Jimothy Sterling said:
Sober Thal said:
Fun fact. The artists and developers own 100% of their IP. They then decide to sell the rights away for money and more resources. Duh.
That's what happens when the rights-buyers have rigged the game in their favor before the artists create their art. Duh.
Creators have a choice to sign these contracts. Are we implying that these people who make games don't know how to read?
Publishers won't even look at a developer if the developer wants to keep the majority share of the rights to the IP. The only exception is when the developer has already become well known enough to have publishers compete for them.
What's wrong with that? Are publishers just supposed to gamble away money on possible crap product?
Are you even aware of the ludicrous double standard in what you've said?

Consumers are supposed to be capable of doing research to find out if the game is any good. Developers are supposed to be able to go through enormous contracts with a fine toothed comb while wolves growl at their door and the members of their team live on ramen noodles- not that they necessarily have agents or legal teams to go through the ramifications of those contracts, they're just supposed to be inherently able to do so under pressure, and if not, well, sucks to be them.

But the big publishers! Oh, dear stars, won't someone think of the poor Sonys and Activisions and EAs?! How are they supposed to live without contracts that screw over their serfs? Why should companies with millions in the bank be expected to suffer any kind of risk? It's not like they can do any sort of research! It's not like they get some kind of- I don't know, design document or prospectus advising them as to what the developer hopes to do with their money, so they might scrutinize it and consider whether it's a good investment or not. It's not like they have marketing departments to advise them on just this matter. It's not like they can set milestones demanding certain results by a certain time frame, or even withhold payment altogether if the development team doesn't suddenly move in an entirely different direction.

No, no! The publishers are the victims, here! And a contract that has a creator lose all rights to the work they've created, that may see that work turned over to create derivative works that they don't see a cent from- why, how could a dev recognize that with anything other than humble gratitude?
 

Korten12

Now I want ma...!
Aug 26, 2009
10,766
0
0
One thing I wondered is that, when Copyright ends, how do you stop people from alterting stuff (this is just based on my knowledge, so it maybe wrong.) Let's say when Lotro goes copyright free, then couldn't anyone say: "I am going to make an offical sequel!" or I am going to change how the stories went.

Then in such as a universe as Middle Earth, how do you tell what is canon and what's not afterwards..?

I don't want to make a universe, and then after copyright ends, someone continues the works and butchereds the characters.
 

MiracleOfSound

Fight like a Krogan
Jan 3, 2009
17,776
0
0
This was an interesting episode for me personally.

I feel like a lot of pirates don't morally differentiate between 'victimless' stealing from Publishing giants and taking stuff from small, struggling artists.

Case in point, I felt pretty sad the first time I found these:

http://www.google.ie/search?ix=hcb&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8&q=miracle+of+sound#sclient=psy-ab&hl=en&safe=off&source=hp&q=miracle+of+sound+torrent&pbx=1&oq=miracle+of+sound+torrent&aq=f&aqi=g1g-m1g-b1&aql=&gs_sm=e&gs_upl=1858l4958l0l5329l8l7l0l0l0l0l226l1033l1.5.1l7l0&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_cp.,cf.osb&fp=6985811cc01f9710&ix=hcb&biw=1280&bih=699
 

Monsterfurby

New member
Mar 7, 2008
871
0
0
See, that's why I love living in Germany. Under German copyright law, it is technically impossible to "give away" the copyright to anything. You, as creator, ALWAYS own it. You can of course contractually lend it to a company and give exclusive rights, but it always defaults back to the creator if the company does not use it. Why doesn't copyright law in common law countries work like that? Because common law has been obsolete since before its creation, that's why.
 

Bostur

New member
Mar 14, 2011
1,070
0
0
Korten12 said:
One thing I wondered is that, when Copyright ends, how do you stop people from alterting stuff (this is just based on my knowledge, so it maybe wrong.) Let's say when Lotro goes copyright free, then couldn't anyone say: "I am going to make an offical sequel!" or I am going to change how the stories went.

Then in such as a universe as Middle Earth, how do you tell what is canon and what's not afterwards..?

I don't want to make a universe, and then after copyright ends, someone continues the works and butchereds the characters.
The simple answer is, you don't. Disney is well know for having 'butchered' a lot of original IP. And some of the authors that Disney borrowed from themselves had a liberal view of their sources. Another way to see it is to call it artistic interpretation.

If Lord of The Rings is considered to be the best by our ancestors, they may treat the original as 'canon'. If they consider a derived work better that would probably become the popular interpretation.
 

Adam Jensen_v1legacy

I never asked for this
Sep 8, 2011
6,633
0
0
Jim is 100% right about publishers being the middle man. And we need to cut the middle man out of the equation. It's a purely capitalist concept that's no longer necessary because of other ways of distributing material, thanks to technology development. Most publishers really are just a bunch of people who don't do anything and they get payed a lot for it. Why should they exist? The world would be a better place is all developers published their own stuff.
 

Korten12

Now I want ma...!
Aug 26, 2009
10,766
0
0
Bostur said:
Korten12 said:
One thing I wondered is that, when Copyright ends, how do you stop people from alterting stuff (this is just based on my knowledge, so it maybe wrong.) Let's say when Lotro goes copyright free, then couldn't anyone say: "I am going to make an offical sequel!" or I am going to change how the stories went.

Then in such as a universe as Middle Earth, how do you tell what is canon and what's not afterwards..?

I don't want to make a universe, and then after copyright ends, someone continues the works and butchereds the characters.
The simple answer is, you don't. Disney is well know for having 'butchered' a lot of original IP. And some of the authors that Disney borrowed from themselves had a liberal view of their sources. Another way to see it is to call it artistic interpretation.

If Lord of The Rings is considered to be the best by our ancestors, they may treat the original as 'canon'. If they consider a derived work better that would probably become the popular interpretation.
But shouldn't there be the option to only allow some people to edit or expand on the works or none at all. For like, ever?
 

punipunipyo

New member
Jan 20, 2011
486
0
0
I couldn't agreed more, this is EXACTLY what this is ALL ABOUT! Remember (i think 2 years ago) they try to pass a "orphan art" law? where companies can go around the net, and "Adopt" an art that was not "Copyrighted" (like going through all the paper works, money prepossessing to get), such like a piece of "art student's work", they can just pick up, and use!? with out being punished for?, and now they are saying that we can't even use their game clips to do rents/reviews? WTF!?
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
Korten12 said:
One thing I wondered is that, when Copyright ends, how do you stop people from alterting stuff (this is just based on my knowledge, so it maybe wrong.) Let's say when Lotro goes copyright free, then couldn't anyone say: "I am going to make an offical sequel!" or I am going to change how the stories went.

Then in such as a universe as Middle Earth, how do you tell what is canon and what's not afterwards..?

I don't want to make a universe, and then after copyright ends, someone continues the works and butchereds the characters.
When copyright ends the material in question is considered public domain. That means it is free for the public to use in whatever manner anybody sees fit. So yes, anybody could say they're going to make a sequel.

But you don't have to worry, because copyright of anything created since 1978 lasts for the life of the author, plus 70 years. So that universe you created is guaranteed to remain under copyright long after you're dead and probably beyond when even your kids are dead.

Even then, by the time it gets close to expiry, I expect Disney will have bought yet another extension to the legislation.
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
Personally, I'm surprised Jim Sterling can't manage to hold enough hate in his heart for both the practices of the industry (especially with respect to legislation) and the pirates.

I certainly can.
 

masticina

New member
Jan 19, 2011
763
0
0
They are killing their own market...

I life in europe, for many many years it would take 6 months easily for a movie that came out in America to come out here. Why? WHY!

There are quite some movies we would love to own on well DVD and Blu-ray and yes even on some kind of streaming service. Again if the big guns upstairs don't want it .. all you can do is go grey!

That and their fight against a changing world. A world in what the internet is good enough to provide our entertainment. But guess what..they still shrug it off. Sure there is netflix in america but not in europe!

Yes and I do dislike how they are acting like spoiled brats. Yes they have the money to buy the goverment and the laws... even against the wishes of the normal people.
 

fubaring0

New member
Apr 30, 2011
11
0
0
I find this subject interesting because the oldest entertainment industry has the most friendly attitude towards the creators of their products. The Publishing Industry where the writers own their copyright and the publishers job is to print and distribute the content.
 

Agayek

Ravenous Gormandizer
Oct 23, 2008
5,178
0
0
Marmooset said:
You weren't wrong the first time. They are. What happens in another area does not change the nature of an individual's actions.
Your example, if taken to extremes, would give a partial justification for Swinging Ape to engage in piracy - not the sideline sitting parasites who actually do so. Another bad guy in the room does not preclude you from being one, too.
Pretty much this. Someone being a dick doesn't give you right to be a dick right back. It may be therapeutic, but it's far from justified.

That said, Jim is pretty much spot-on insofar as copyright law does need to change. Unfortunately, the changes it needs are directly opposed to the entertainment industry making piles of cash, and as such is not likely to pass.
 

Epona

Elite Member
Jul 29, 2020
4,221
0
41
Country
United States
Scrustle said:
Interesting to see how what Jim says has changed since this whole SOPA thing. I'm not calling him a hypocrite or anything, because he's not. It's just interesting to see how his ideas are changing in light of changing events.
It is and I hope more people are starting to look at the other side of the argument. After SOPA/PIPA, I would have to question the sanity of anyone who still fights FOR the bottom line of multi-millionaire corporations. The same corporations who flat out told everyone that they don't care about consumer rights or internet freedom. Don't fight for them people, they won't fight for you and in fact were fighting against you.
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
I'm starting to like you more and more, Jim. Hardly an episode goes by when I'm not in complete agreement with you already.
 

Epona

Elite Member
Jul 29, 2020
4,221
0
41
Country
United States
Sober Thal said:
Diana Kingston-Gabai said:
Sober Thal said:
What's wrong with that? Are publishers just supposed to gamble away money on possible crap product?
Why not? We (the customers) do...
How so? You mean the people that don't know how to research a product before they buy it?

Yeah, they gamble, and it's silly.

By research, does that include downloading a full game trial, to determine if your PC can run it, because the publishers didn't want to fund a demo and wanted you to buy blind?
 

violinist1129

New member
Oct 12, 2011
101
0
0
lozfoe444 said:
I never understood why every single god damn pro-piracy video uses that "two people sharing a file with hearts" image when publishers make it pretty clear that it should be one person copying a paper while the other person (who is blind in this case) waves a knife around trying to hit them.

Publishers don't want to share their stuff. What makes you think that it's OK?
 

Sandytimeman

Brain Freeze...yay!
Jan 14, 2011
729
0
0
been waiting all day to see what jim had to say on the subject. I agree pretty much spot on with him. Copyright laws are pretty ridiculous now life time of author +70 years in the case of just regular copyrighted materials. And it started out at 28 years. Shit George lucas would still have been a millionare and his works would have lost copyright around 97. Harry potter doesn't lose copyright until 2117. Seriously...some things need to change, because these IP stop being about supporting the artists and supporting the long dead artists company instead.
 

MrBaskerville

New member
Mar 15, 2011
871
0
0
I think the whole: big games are extremely expensive to produce angle is missing. Who pays for the production of big expensive games like call of duty? The publishers are the only ones with that kind of money, if it weren´t for them most studios would have to take the indie route and AAA titles would probably somewhat dissapear.
 

Aardvaarkman

I am the one who eats ants!
Jul 14, 2011
1,262
0
0
Adam Jensen said:
Most publishers really are just a bunch of people who don't do anything and they get payed a lot for it. Why should they exist? The world would be a better place is all developers published their own stuff.
But what if developers don't want to publish their own stuff? If you're a video game developer, you're probably good at programming, or 3D graphics, or sound art, etc. It doesn't really make sense for a developer to divert attention away from what they do best - making games, and take on the burdens of distribution, marketing, licensing, accounting, legal issues, etc. Anybody who's run their own business in a creative field can tell you that dealing with the "business" side of things can quickly drain your passion for the creative things you got into the business for in the first place.

Also, it might work for a small developer with a fairly low-budget game, but what if a developer wants to make an epic "AAA" game that costs tens of millions of dollars to make? Where is that funding going to come from?

It's not like the internet magically makes publishing a non-trivial activity. There's a lot more to it than just throwing a file up on a server.
 

violinist1129

New member
Oct 12, 2011
101
0
0
Adam Jensen said:
Jim is 100% right about publishers being the middle man. And we need to cut the middle man out of the equation. It's a purely capitalist concept that's no longer necessary because of other ways of distributing material, thanks to technology development. Most publishers really are just a bunch of people who don't do anything and they get payed a lot for it. Why should they exist? The world would be a better place is all developers published their own stuff.
Do you really think that publishers like EA are a bunch of guys who get paid to do literally nothing? That's a bit ridiculous when you think about it.

If publishers did nothing that developers couldn't do, why would any dev ever have a publisher? Obviously, game developers value publishers to the extent that they find it worthwhile to get their help in a contract which they agreed to and signed.
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
Agayek said:
Marmooset said:
You weren't wrong the first time. They are. What happens in another area does not change the nature of an individual's actions.
Your example, if taken to extremes, would give a partial justification for Swinging Ape to engage in piracy - not the sideline sitting parasites who actually do so. Another bad guy in the room does not preclude you from being one, too.
Pretty much this. Someone being a dick doesn't give you right to be a dick right back. It may be therapeutic, but it's far from justified.

That said, Jim is pretty much spot-on insofar as copyright law does need to change. Unfortunately, the changes it needs are directly opposed to the entertainment industry making piles of cash, and as such is not likely to pass.
I know. God forbid that someone accidentally writes a law for the good of the people and not for the good of big businesses.
 

Bostur

New member
Mar 14, 2011
1,070
0
0
Korten12 said:
... snip ...
But shouldn't there be the option to only allow some people to edit or expand on the works or none at all. For like, ever?
I don't think authors should have that power from beyond the grave. Art is for the living, not the dead. I think it's reasonable to try to make sure that the original author is credited for the original work. So for instance no one else than Tolkien can take credit for LOTR. I think it's also important to try preserve those original works of art so they can be compared to later interpretations and spinoffs.
But new artists needs to be able to renew these stories in a contemporary context. Maybe that results in a holo-deck version of LOTR where Boromir lives, thats the choice of the coming generations.
 

JMeganSnow

New member
Aug 27, 2008
1,591
0
0
If you want publishers to respect the proper rights of developers, how's about you respect them first by not pirating brand-new stuff?

I got no beef with people who obtain and play games that are essentially "out of print". You could even make a case that copyright law needs to be rewritten to take into account such "abandonware". Are anyone's interests served by making it illegal to distribute for free stuff that nobody wants to buy? If it's *no longer possible* to buy a *new* copy of a book, record, video game, then who is harmed by people photocopying their old version and distributing it free? The owner has basically declared that their expected return no longer justifies continued investment in the property. Whoever is now distributing the work has made an investment without expectation of return. Shouldn't their investment be respected and entitle them, if not to collect money, at least to proceed without being harassed?

Heck, you could even go so far as to say that the distributor of such "reclaimedware" could legitimately be entitled to collect money--for the use of their service, if not for the IP itself. Maybe make it so they'd have to pay a certain legally-mandated, non-negotiable percentage of revenue in royalties to whoever owns the IP until it would normally enter the public domain. Then, if they don't and the owner finds out about this publishing, you have a VERY simple situation that's VERY easily resolved: the amount of money owing is VERY easily calculated and won't require years of litigation and stupid waste. And then you can very easily append a provision that if someone is distributing but not paying, THEN the owner has a legitimate right to demand that it be taken down.

In essence, you'd be inserting a third phase of copyright status in between "copyrighted" and "public domain", during which everyone exercises their rights in relation to their action toward that IP. If the owner throws it in the dumpster and moves on, the bum who comes along, tidies it up a bit, and makes some use of it isn't a criminal.
 

Epona

Elite Member
Jul 29, 2020
4,221
0
41
Country
United States
MrBaskerville said:
I think the whole: big games are extremely expensive to produce angle is missing. Who pays for the production of big expensive games like call of duty? The publishers are the only ones with that kind of money, if it weren´t for them most studios would have to take the indie route and AAA titles would probably somewhat dissapear.
If people just stopped buying from big publishers that hate them (you know the ones who punish paying customers and support anti-consumer legislation), indie games would still be made. Budgets would shrink and in my opinion, that would be a good thing. The budgets NEED to shrink. 50 Million dollar games taking 5 years to make isn't sustainable anyway.
 

ModReap

Gatekeeper
Apr 3, 2008
362
0
0
*is impressed*

I used to condemn pirates like jim did, but then I took an arrow to the knee then I watched the Jimquisition and could only think that this is very, very, sadly, true.
 

Epona

Elite Member
Jul 29, 2020
4,221
0
41
Country
United States
JMeganSnow said:
If you want publishers to respect the proper rights of developers, how's about you respect them first by not pirating brand-new stuff?
I am going to make a few assumptions here, correct me if I get some wrong. I am going to assume that you:

- want publishers to respect the proper rights of developers
- you don't pirate games

Has your contribution made publishers more respectable to developers? I would say that the more money you give to publishers, the worse they act but that's just my opinion.
 

Aulleas123

New member
Aug 12, 2009
365
0
0
This is exactly the issue with modern intellectual property. Either one can choose to have a large audience and sacrifice financially or they can sell to a small audience for all of their profit. To people who want the world to be fair, this is bad. To realists, this is reasonable. Sorry, but I disagree with Jim's point. I hate SOPA and PIPA as much as the next guy, but defending piracy because businesses don't do what we want them to do is not the right answer either. Businesses get games out there for gamers to buy and play, it's the same thing with movies and music. If you don't like it, then invest in small franchises and indie games.

It's a matter of private principle, but using piracy to attack businesses that we don't like isn't the right answer. It's childish and, in the end, it's criminal.
 

JMeganSnow

New member
Aug 27, 2008
1,591
0
0
Bostur said:
Korten12 said:
... snip ...
But shouldn't there be the option to only allow some people to edit or expand on the works or none at all. For like, ever?
I don't think authors should have that power from beyond the grave. Art is for the living, not the dead. I think it's reasonable to try to make sure that the original author is credited for the original work. So for instance no one else than Tolkien can take credit for LOTR. I think it's also important to try preserve those original works of art so they can be compared to later interpretations and spinoffs.
But new artists needs to be able to renew these stories in a contemporary context. Maybe that results in a holo-deck version of LOTR where Boromir lives, thats the choice of the coming generations.
Authors should have some power from beyond the grave, but it should be *strictly limited in duration*. Otherwise, you'd have a problem where an author sells a novel or work of art, only to die a week later. It can't immediately go into public domain because then the person or persons who paid for the work have no chance to earn their deserved profits.

Now, I don't like the *current* time limitations. To me, they seem excessive. At *most*, it should be author's lifetime + 18 years, which is enough time for any of the author's minor children to reach adulthood. This should pertain even if the author retained no rights whatsoever to their work. Same expiration date. It doesn't necessarily even have to be that long--after all, IP creators can buy life insurance just like everybody else.

The principled thing to do, in my mind, would be to make the copyright last until the owner takes it out of production. If they want to keep printing new copies or maintaining the website where you can download it, they still own it. If the book is out of print or the video game servers are shut off, that seems like as good a time as any to have the copyright expire. It'd also make IP owners think long and hard about whether they're truly done with it before they shut down their site or whatever.

It'd also be a great thing to distinguish between copyright and trademark or brand. The copyright should expire. Maybe the trademark/brand should function differently. No, it SHOULD function differently, because it IS different.
 

danirax

New member
Jan 11, 2011
140
0
0
looks appropriate for this vid...
The king and his men stole the queen from her bed
And bound her in her bones
The seas be ours and by the powers
Where we will, we'll roam!

Yo, ho, all hands
Hoist the colors high
Heave, ho, thieves and beggars
Never shall we die

Yo, ho, haul together
Hoist the colors high
Heave, ho, thieves and beggars
Never shall we die

Some have died and some are alive
Others sail on the sea
With the keys to the cage and the Devil to pay
We lay to Fiddler's Green!

The bell has been raised from its watery grave
Do you hear its sepulchral tone?
A call to all, pay heed to the squall
And turn your sail to home!

Yo, ho, haul together
Hoist the colors high
Heave ho, thieves and beggars
Never shall we die
 

Carnagath

New member
Apr 18, 2009
1,814
0
0
Robert B. Marks said:
Carnagath said:
Robert B. Marks said:
4. If anybody wants to say that game companies are not injured by computer game piracy, I would ask them to take a moment and count the number of PC game companies that hopped ship to the smaller console market over the last 10 years. Compared to 2002, the computer game world is considerably sparser than it used to be.
Hmm... Nope, getting nothing. Do tell. Which PC game companies jumped ship? I can't think of a single one that abandoned the PC market and devoted themselves exclusively to consoles. Many of them realized the market expansion in consoles and turned their releases multiplatform, sure, some of them may even have decided to not release some of their titles on the PC due to specific logistics of those particular titles, but can't think of a single one that has written the PC off. Example of the above: Rockstar. Yes, they did not release Red Dead Redemption for the PC, but they did release LA Noire and will release Max Payne 3. I can however think of a multitude of examples of studios that were bought by behemoth publishers over the last 10 years, who agreed to fund and promote their projects, but instead cannibalized them and their intellectual property. How ironic...
I'm not going to reply in this thread more than once - I have found that online arguments don't tend to be worth the time. But, if you want your example, here's one: Epic. They started as a PC company called Epic Megagames, and have since moved to consoles. Their console titles do get PC releases, but by a different company.

But, if you really want a better picture, read this: http://www.tweakguides.com/Piracy_5.html

That link is from a website that did a proper analysis of the numbers, and talked about why the migration from a PC market measured in billions of PCs to a console market of under 100 million consoles took place.

And that's all I have to say on the subject.
Pretty hilarious article there. Disembodied statements by some devs that basically claim they'd be BILLIONAIRES if it wasn't for piracy (you're right, J. Carmack, piracy is why Rage didn't sell well). If they say so, it must be true! I also love how the writers of that article are trying to prove that the explanation for the fact that some titles (they mention COD as an example) sell better on the consoles than on the PC, even though the PC userbase is larger and console titles are more expensive, is because most PC gamers are pirates, and they mention nothing about the fact that consoles are "trendy" and, if you are a young gamer aged 15-24 and you want to buy the version of COD that will most likely allow you to play with present and future friends and classmates, Xbox Live is definitely the way to go. Nope, none of that matters, if there are more gaming PC's than consoles then COD should sell more on PC's. Because they say so. Also, your best example of "one the many" PC studios that abandoned PC gaming for consoles is a studio that... releases all its games on PC, but outsources some of the multiplatform workload. Cool story bro.

I'm not going to write a massive detailed post about this either. If you are "above" online arguments, then you are really better off not posting.
 

tippy2k2

Beloved Tyrant
Legacy
Apr 3, 2020
14,003
869
118
Yes Jim, I forgot about the often used "if they're rich enough, go ahead and steal from them" clause that is placed in the law.

Ultimately, the creator owns the IP until they choose to sell it to EA so that their game can be made. Is this a system that is in dire need of fixing? Hell yeah. Is stealing from the companies the way to do it? Hell No.
 

JMeganSnow

New member
Aug 27, 2008
1,591
0
0
Crono1973 said:
JMeganSnow said:
If you want publishers to respect the proper rights of developers, how's about you respect them first by not pirating brand-new stuff?
I am going to make a few assumptions here, correct me if I get some wrong. I am going to assume that you:

- want publishers to respect the proper rights of developers
- you don't pirate games

Has your contribution made publishers more respectable to developers? I would say that the more money you give to publishers, the worse they act but that's just my opinion.
Something like that is hard to measure, but I'd say yes, because the developers I *like* and buy products from are still in existence and still making money, even though a lot of them have swapped publishers.

Has it prevented the developers from signing away too many of their rights? No. But that's on them. Now, if I bought any random dreck that came out of a publishing house, that'd be a problem. I buy only specific games by studios I like, and if I get a game I don't like, I abandon that series. That's why I didn't get Mass Effect 2 and won't be getting ME3, even though I quite like the Dragon Age series by the same studio. I support only the particular products I want.
 

Yureina

Who are you?
May 6, 2010
7,098
0
0
Interesting... you brought up some things I had never really thought about before, particularly the Copyright stuff. I'd say this was a good episode. :eek:
 

Bostur

New member
Mar 14, 2011
1,070
0
0
JMeganSnow said:
Authors should have some power from beyond the grave, but it should be *strictly limited in duration*. Otherwise, you'd have a problem where an author sells a novel or work of art, only to die a week later. It can't immediately go into public domain because then the person or persons who paid for the work have no chance to earn their deserved profits.

Now, I don't like the *current* time limitations. To me, they seem excessive. At *most*, it should be author's lifetime + 18 years, which is enough time for any of the author's minor children to reach adulthood. This should pertain even if the author retained no rights whatsoever to their work. Same expiration date. It doesn't necessarily even have to be that long--after all, IP creators can buy life insurance just like everybody else.

The principled thing to do, in my mind, would be to make the copyright last until the owner takes it out of production. If they want to keep printing new copies or maintaining the website where you can download it, they still own it. If the book is out of print or the video game servers are shut off, that seems like as good a time as any to have the copyright expire. It'd also make IP owners think long and hard about whether they're truly done with it before they shut down their site or whatever.

It'd also be a great thing to distinguish between copyright and trademark or brand. The copyright should expire. Maybe the trademark/brand should function differently. No, it SHOULD function differently, because it IS different.
Yeah good points. I think I meant to say they shouldn't have eternal influence from beyond the grave. :)

I think it's a flawed concept to base the expiration of copyright solely on time. Your idea to base it on active use could work. This would also solve the differences in longevity between media, for instance the fact that software usually doesn't have commercial viability for as long as written texts. It's a bit silly if MS-DOS and Pacman gets protection for more than a century.
There is also the issue that if a company is the original 'author', how do we measure the time of death of that company? Basing copyright expiration on active use would solve that problem as well.
 

Osaka117

New member
Feb 20, 2011
321
0
0
Man, I always thought that Kojima was just a madman, but Metal Gear Solid 2 and 4 are actually fucking happening! It's good to realize this now, so that when EA and Activision start handing out shots that say will enhance your video game experience, we'll know not to take them unless you want nano machines in your bloodstream that'll force you to buy all their games.

And also good to hear of someone else who appreciates Metal Arms. I never owned it, but I did play it a lot at the demo xbox in Gamestop, then called Funcoland, back in the day.
 

Epona

Elite Member
Jul 29, 2020
4,221
0
41
Country
United States
JMeganSnow said:
Crono1973 said:
JMeganSnow said:
If you want publishers to respect the proper rights of developers, how's about you respect them first by not pirating brand-new stuff?
I am going to make a few assumptions here, correct me if I get some wrong. I am going to assume that you:

- want publishers to respect the proper rights of developers
- you don't pirate games

Has your contribution made publishers more respectable to developers? I would say that the more money you give to publishers, the worse they act but that's just my opinion.
Something like that is hard to measure, but I'd say yes, because the developers I *like* and buy products from are still in existence and still making money, even though a lot of them have swapped publishers.

Has it prevented the developers from signing away too many of their rights? No. But that's on them. Now, if I bought any random dreck that came out of a publishing house, that'd be a problem. I buy only specific games by studios I like, and if I get a game I don't like, I abandon that series. That's why I didn't get Mass Effect 2 and won't be getting ME3, even though I quite like the Dragon Age series by the same studio. I support only the particular products I want.
So what developers have received more respect from their publishers that you buy games from?

Just saying "Don't pirate and publishers will respect devs more" doesn't make any sense. It's like saying "If you want McDonalds to stop messing up your order, keep giving them money".
 

CardinalPiggles

New member
Jun 24, 2010
3,226
0
0
Well put Jim, big money publishers are a bunch of dildos, fuck them.

Piracy is bad, but publishers are worse, hang them all I say!
 

Ashcrexl

New member
May 27, 2009
1,416
0
0
everyone here is in big trouble! the forum rules clearly states that posts cannot advocate or discuss piracy! enjoy your suspensions! especially YOU jim!
 

geizr

New member
Oct 9, 2008
850
0
0
How so fickle. Just because one does wrong against another does not give excuse to commit wrong in retaliation. There is also the fact that in the case of the creator not having the rights to his/her own creation, as I understand, that is a result of that creator consigning those rights to the publisher in exchange for publicity and marketing. Yes, it is a dick move that companies hold onto these rights and do nothing with them. However, it was a conscious choice on the part of the original creator to hand those rights to the publisher, and so, it is 100% legitimate. If you agree to something, then you accept the full consequences of that agreement, until such time as the agreement is annulled or rescinded, either by the parties with whom the agreement was made or by higher authority.

-----

In the past, a publisher was more necessary because it was difficult for individuals and small groups to execute the entire process of creating, refining, and marketing their works. The publisher acted to assist these individuals and groups, and because the publisher was a necessary partner in the endeavor, the publisher had significant power to negotiate such onerous terms as has lead to the complete gang-rapeage that content creators are suffering from.

However, the advances in technology, the advent of the internet, and numerous digital content outlets have paved the way to allow self-publication. The publisher is no longer a necessary partner. Yet, many content creator are still hesitant or at least uncertain about going the independent/self-publishing route. Thus, they continue to constrain themselves to an outdated paradigm that only screws them over in the end.

To be sure, the publishers themselves are fighting to maintain relevance in a changing market environment, and it's rather sad that it has been the technology companies, not the publishers, that have devised the new means by which the market can continue and flourish into the future. The publishers are dinosaurs, and their extinction is inevitable because they refused so long to adapt to the changes in the market and failed to recognize new opportunities for new business models that would help them to continue. Their insistence on maintaining the old ways of doing business has doomed them to perdition.

Even further, the incumbent publishers have sealed their fates with the generation of growing resentment for their policies and tactics and their failure to serve the needs of the market. In my opinion, the market, as a whole, having tried everything up to this point to give the existing publishers the benefit of the doubt and encourage them toward the products and services that are desired, making abundantly clear those things for which we would gladly give our money and being summarily ignored or dismissed by the publishers, is at a point of exhausted patience and now should seek to take matters into its own hands with publicly generated content. Essentially, if the current incumbent publishers can not or will not serve the demands of the market, then the market must find its own solution without them. The publishers have had their chance and been given ample opportunity. They were given the choice to join us to venture forth into the future or be left behind to die. They have chosen death.

In my opinion, the way forward is self-publication and publicly generated digital content. Current technology has made such content extremely easy to create, market, distribute, and discover. I foresee the cusp of a new market reality in which the old hegemony of big content publishers is extinguished and in its place will be a new collection of self-publishers, public content, and digital distribution services(things like Amazon, iTunes, Steam, etc. but perhaps with better search, discovery, and community features). Granted the quality of such content is not necessarily going to be that great at the outset(of course, it's not like the current content from many of the big publishers is hitting it out of the park), but, in time, the market is likely to further adapt to be more discerning and provide opportunity for methods, services, and technologies that help separate the wheat from the chaff.

One thing that the incumbent publishers are not understanding is the social nature of today's fans of content. People no longer passively take in content like hooking a hose to a garbage disposal unit. Instead, they like to involve themselves with the content and share that involvement with others. Fans today like to develop a community around the content and express their love and appreciation of the content by creating their own derivatives of that content(check out fanfiction.net sometime for just one example of what I mean). In my opinion, it is critical for any content creator or content service going forward to allow, encourage, and cultivate that community because it builds loyalty and enthusiasm for the works, which can serve to boost sales. Understand, I am not talking about piracy, I am talking about community cultivation in which fans are freely able to show their love of the content through their own works based on that content(bootlegging would still be illegal).

So to summarize: piracy is still a bad thing, regardless how one feels about the tyranny of the current content publishing regime. However, the current publishers are doomed precisely because of their tyrannical actions which has garnered them nothing but antipathy from the market. Further, technology has advanced to the point that the old business models are no longer needed or functional; yet, the current publishing regime has failed to recognize this and adapt accordingly. It is now necessary for the market to proceed into the future of content creation and distribution via self-publishing and publicly created content that is uninhibited by the whims of the current publishers; in essence, it's time to just leave them behind to die. In going forward with these new business models, it is important to account for the desire of the market to socialize and become emotionally invested in the content through community building.

Didn't mean to end up with a wall-o-text on this, but this is just my opinion.
 

Bunnymarn

New member
Oct 8, 2008
243
0
0
Sober Thal said:
Jimothy Sterling said:
Sober Thal said:
Fun fact. The artists and developers own 100% of their IP. They then decide to sell the rights away for money and more resources. Duh.
That's what happens when the rights-buyers have rigged the game in their favor before the artists create their art. Duh.
Creators have a choice to sign these contracts. Are we implying that these people who make games don't know how to read?
That's like - to use an example from Australia - a farmer selling his produce to Coles and/or Woolworths. Either the farmer agrees to accept any price that they demand, even if that means he runs at a loss, or he doesn't sell any produce. I'd say Coles and Woolworths own around 80-90% of the food market (not to mention others, like the liquor market).

And I'm willing to bet that it's the same for most of these game developers who want to get their games well known and distributed to as many people as they can. Either they accept whatever these publishers offer them, or they sit around and get nothing. And Steam really only advertises inside of Steam, so only a set amount of people will really know about indie games on there (I could be wrong about that - I've never seen a Steam advertisement outside of Steam).
 

Sprinal

New member
Jan 27, 2010
534
0
0
There is a reason why I haven't bought a game from EA etc for about 2 years. Mostly because their games suck. But I suppose that's most of the problem. As the publishers find things that work they then repackage and re-release their old works. In order to make more money and do nothing for it. Whilst at the same time killing anyone who wants to do anything new. So while I do buy games from Bethesda and Mojang (the ONLY companies I have bought things from in the last 2 years) I simply refuse to play anything from anyone else almost. If EA decides to make a good game and not be cunts about it. Then I may buy it. But if it ends up like spore. Then they are going to have fun trying to stitch their own necks back together.

eh... It really does seem like all the good games are either old or made by Lesser known devs.

Well that does me. I'm just keen for good games
EDIT:

To the mods. I have not pirated for the last 2 years I have only bought and played about 3 games.

Therefore I am not a pirate. Unless of cause modding SKyrim/New vegas/fallout 3 counts as piracy which under SOPA/ACTA/PIPA could.
 

Phlakes

+15 Dagger of Socks
Mar 25, 2010
4,282
0
0
Oh dear lord no.

This will be, and probably has been (not reading through five pages) twisted into "fuck yea piracy is freedom and rebellion we're fighting the corporate power fuck da police".

Now, I do agree that that kind of situation is an exception, but piracy is still a crime and pirates deserve to be punished.
 

DTWolfwood

Better than Vash!
Oct 20, 2009
3,716
0
0
Holy shit, i went from apprehensive about Jim Sterling to having deep respect for the man in only 6 episodes.

Thank god for Jim Sterling.
 

NaramSuen

New member
Jun 8, 2010
261
0
0
The interesting thing is that I never agreed with your original stance on piracy because of the current state of copyright law. I did appreciate the parrot and fake beard though.

Keep preaching the good word Jim!
 

Torrasque

New member
Aug 6, 2010
3,441
0
0
Very good points and I agree wholeheartedly.
I think from now on whenever I pirate something (mostly music and anime) I'll do some research to find out who I am actually pirating from.
 

BoredRolePlayer

New member
Nov 9, 2010
727
0
0
My only thing is when people get mad if someone owns a digital copy of a game they already bought. I can understand hate if someone buys a game makes copies and gives those copies to people. But copying a digital archive for personal use shouldn't be a issue and if you get rid of the digital copy when you lose or get rid of the physical copy it shouldn't be a issue.
 

ACman

New member
Apr 21, 2011
629
0
0
Sober Thal said:
Notch is such a jackoff, isn't he...
Id don't think that Jim is claiming that publishers shouldn't be able to demand rights when taking financial risk to support work. I think he take bigger issue with the rent seeking behaviour of publishers especially in the area of IP squatting.

But we aren't just talking about games here. This issue includes music, books, and films. Book and music publishers are now essentially obsolete with their remaining market value being the residual IP that they "own".

Big budget games and movies would not get made without publisher money but that shouldn't mean that they should be allowed to squat on IP for perpetuity stifling the creativity of derivative works.
 

gyroscopeboy

New member
Nov 27, 2010
601
0
0
I actually had a good experience with copyright law..i got to sue someone who used my work without my consent, but that was music...which seems a little more ways along in the independent publishing/distribution than the games industry.
 

Vault101

I'm in your mind fuzz
Sep 26, 2010
18,847
0
0
wow...jims angry

I still dont agree with piracy though

and Nine Inch Nails FTW!!!
 

Jacob Iott

New member
Apr 4, 2010
29
0
0
I've always wanted to play the Gamecube or Xbox version of Metal Arms. The PS2 version had horrible graphics, an extremely low frame rate, and only two player multi-player and I still loved it.
 

Tinybear

New member
Aug 27, 2010
74
0
0
Great episode. Talk about how they are constantly trying to fu** over the customer with DRM as well! Bought an ubisoft game for PC lately, fu**ing unplayable because of DRM.
 

Nurb

Cynical bastard
Dec 9, 2008
3,078
0
0
What might start changing things, is that independent developers form some sort of agreement not to sell their IP to a publisher without retaining rights or regaining rights after a length of time.

They make this known through the industry, and encourage new and growing developers to join in their agreement, basically creating a pool of new ideas and content as time passes that the corporate publisher fucks can't have access to unless they agree to contracts that allow creators to retain rights.

Obviously this would only work if developers maintain the agreement and gain enough numbers and support that the publishers won't be as quick to pass over because they can't own everything forever and can't snatch up new ideas as easily.

It'd be a long shot, but it's just a thought since solidarity among smaller developers could eventually stand up against big publisher owning copyrights to others' stuff.

 

Superior Mind

New member
Feb 9, 2009
1,537
0
0
Well made points sir. Bravo.

Copyright law is broken. It's strange you get frequent examples of creators of original material being barred from using it because someone else owns the copyrights to it. I mean... what? Isn't the sort of the very thing copyright law was meant to prevent? It kind of just gets passed over because we sort of expect it from people with money. And then we have to raise merry Hell to try and stop those mindless career politicians from giving them more unjust power. I'm not an advocate for piracy and I think Kim Dotcom and his lot at Megaupload are a group of fucking crooks for more than one reason - but when the big powerhouses of industry that exist only for their self-advancement try to fuck with the system in order to vacuum up more power, wealth and control and are allowed to then that's a shitty system that needs to be opposed.
 

shreedder

New member
May 19, 2009
179
0
0
The publisher getting the ip rights in many ways is a check on the developer. Let us say that publishers never take the ip, the developer could simply take a long ass time making a shitty product demanding more money. Holding the ip allows the publisher to cut a poor investment but keep good ip alive by giving it to someone else. We would not have the same quality AAA games we do today without publishers not only giving out, but making million and millions of dollars.

Is this perfect? No. However in the end the artist has the choice to get the money and give up the ip as collateral.
 

RobfromtheGulag

New member
May 18, 2010
931
0
0
As a bit of a tangent, it seems like what peeves copyright holders the most is when others take their place, as it were. MegaUpload took 'their' property and 'sold' it in a manner of speaking, if premium memberships or whatnot are taken into account. Like a game store selling burned copies of games.

Anyway, just throwing that out there. I doubt it'd stop the RIAA from suing 12 year olds anyway.
 

Aeonknight

New member
Apr 8, 2011
751
0
0
Creator sells rights to publishers, then has seller's remorse as if it's justified?

Do you sell a car and then complain that you don't get to drive it anymore? Sorry, that doesn't justify piracy. No matter how much your SOPA induced rage wants it to be true.

For those going "that's the only logical choice", then it's a choice you don't have to make. Don't like the rules? Then take your ball and go home, but don't play ball then ***** about it later. Also: Indie developers are exception to the rule, but people pirate that shit anyway.

Jim made some good points, the publishers are by no means "nice guys", but 2 wrongs don't make a right. This sounds like another faulty logic justification, along the lines of "I'm not hurting the developer, so it's ok if I take his work without permission"... seriously? At least publishers paid the developer for it, what's your excuse?
 

shreedder

New member
May 19, 2009
179
0
0
I feel that it is also worth mentioning that all business work in similar ways. You have a great idea for some form of new shoes, but not the money to produce them. So a person/company gives your company money in exchange for stock in your company. Depending on how much you need they get more stock, and with that more power over your company. You suck at making these shoes? Well that stockholder takes back all their stock/original investment and leaves with zero lose, or if they own a large enough portion forces you out of your own company, and take control.

The issue with any creative project is that a producer leaving a bad ip mid way through will lose the investor money, and the project they invested in. This is a lose lose for a investor. When the investors lose, they take their large ball of money and go elsewhere.

Investors only invest to make money for themselves, welcome to capitalism.
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
Itsthefuzz said:
Sober Thal said:
Dragon Age 2 was a great game
After browsing these forums for quite some time... I honestly, until now, didn't know you had a sense of humor.
Uhm...er... I think you failed maybe?

There is no humor in that post, nor this one. You could list 5 things that made DA 2 bad and I could probably agree with you that those things weren't good. I still loved that game more than the original. I would also bet you could list 5 games you think are better than DA 2, and I could list 5 things that made them not as great (for me) as DA 2.

I will also go on the record by saying I have never been paid by EA, Ubisoft, Bethesda, Valve, Actavision, ect ect ect...
 
Mar 5, 2011
690
0
0
At first my pillar of reality came crashing down around me, but then, Jim came and shone light into dark corners and rebuild my world with his strong and graceful words.
 

camazotz

New member
Jul 23, 2009
480
0
0
A first! This is the first Jimquisition I disagree with. There are two separate problems here: big publishers being dicks, and individual consumers thinking they have a divine right to experience any content they want to download for free. in neither case is the solution to devalue intellectual property by pirating content. Just because big money AAA publishers are being asses about this, does not give the individual carte blanche to in turn play the role of pirate. This is the kind of argument where it really does fail. Most of the games we're talking about here don't have one creator; they have hundreds, and by definition such titles can't get made unless you have a big money backer behind them.

Anyway, I advocate two things: first, big publishers stop treating me like a criminal with their DRM and SOPA support, and second, for all the pirates, knock it off, you do not have a right to free content no matter how much you dress up your petty belief that you somehow are "owed it" because the man made your diaper rash itch.

Now, when we're all NOT pirating and they continue to hose us over with garbage like DRM and SOPA, then we can legitimately start casting stones.
 

Cureacao

New member
Apr 29, 2010
19
0
0
ACman said:
Book and music publishers are now essentially obsolete with their remaining market value being the residual IP that they "own".
This is pretty much entirely wrong. Book and music publishers do quite a lot for each writer/artist. I don't know heaps about what happens to books but most of what music publishers do can be transferred across in one way or another. Music publishers, on top of distribution, they also market the band (which makes use of all the research they have done to see where best it would be advertised), record the band (which includes both mixing and mastering), help them get a sound which is accessible without compromising their integrity, sell and market their merch, get them gigs, do all their legal business and generally give them more exposure than they would get if they were independent.

While obviously some of the above gets warped (eg. producers have been known to COMPLETELY change a bands sound just to make them sell better, as in changing punk bands into pop-rock) and they have been known to grossly underpay their artists, a good record label will do what I have explained plus much more. In fact music publishers are so helpful that many bands try so hard to get signed; it's like one of the best things that can happen to a small band. While bands can certainly go indie and gain a heap of success, it requires much more work; they have to pay for people to do a lot of the legal and advertising stuff and give up, not only their day jobs, but also their social lives (most of the time anyway).

This is pretty much the same for books too, except changed around a lot and junk; the point is the same though.
 

Elf Defiler Korgan

New member
Apr 15, 2009
981
0
0
Same Jim bro, I don't give a f*ck if they were thieves either. Good to see you aren't so furious at pirates anymore. It is a bit weird when people attack my crew of sea-dogs. I mean, my rum drinking game-cracking salvage expert friends. I mean, the crew of the f*ck you I want to check out this game and see if it is utter sh*t without parting with my dubloons thanks merchant "friend".

:D

Sit down and play some liar's dice with us.
 

ACman

New member
Apr 21, 2011
629
0
0
Cureacao said:
ACman said:
Book and music publishers are now essentially obsolete with their remaining market value being the residual IP that they "own".
This is pretty much entirely wrong. Book and music publishers do quite a lot for each writer/artist. I don't know heaps about what happens to books but most of what music publishers do can be transferred across in one way or another. Music publishers, on top of distribution, they also market the band (which makes use of all the research they have done to see where best it would be advertised), record the band (which includes both mixing and mastering), help them get a sound which is accessible without compromising their integrity, sell and market their merch, get them gigs, do all their legal business and generally give them more exposure than they would get if they were independent.

While obviously some of the above gets warped (eg. producers have been known to COMPLETELY change a bands sound just to make them sell better, as in changing punk bands into pop-rock) and they have been known to grossly underpay their artists, a good record label will do what I have explained plus much more. In fact music publishers are so helpful that many bands try so hard to get signed; it's like one of the best things that can happen to a small band. While bands can certainly go indie and gain a heap of success, it requires much more work; they have to pay for people to do a lot of the legal and advertising stuff and give up, not only their day jobs, but also their social lives (most of the time anyway).

This is pretty much the same for books too, except changed around a lot and junk; the point is the same though.
I disagree. Independent digital distribution has cut out most of the importance of traditional publishing.

I agree that if you want to be on commercial radio then the studio system is probably the only way forward but its false to think that musicians need big studios to produce their music or get gigs.

I guess there will always be big commercial shit but its such a tiny percentage of music out there. You no longer need to be an enthusiast to know anything about independent music. I used to buy a couple of CDs a month but there's so much free music out there that I don't bother. music companies are no longer gate keepers to all music and they're going to take a hit.

Look at Louis CK recently and his digital release. He made 1 million dollars in a week. He estimated that that was 5 times more than he would have earned during the entire run if he had gone with a publisher. Now I agree that music an comedy aren't exactly the same as mixing and mastering require more finese but if that's the ratio then I can't see much advantage.

Digital books are going to mean the same thing. Making a physical book is a massive expense. But digitally you can offer the same content for a fraction of the cost. If you get a name through a publisher with one book or have a name for yourself already what is the incentive to go to through that again when you can take all revenue for yourself.
 

surg3n

New member
May 16, 2011
709
0
0
''He made a game along with his team, created a world, populated it with characters, and now has no say over any of it''

Yeah, but he got PAID to create that world and populate it with characters, paid by someone else, to create content for them, not for him or his team, for the people paying his and his teams salary.

If he really wanted control over Metal Arms, then he should have developed it himself. There is an option for these holy developers, go indi, or stop moaning when you don't have control of something you never owned in the first place.

Creators will never have control while they work for a company, duh! - they are being paid to create, and most likely paid pretty well.

The problem is that pirates don't have thief values, they take anything and put effort into providing it for free. A shoplifter probably wouldn't steal much from a corner shop, but might fill thier pockets in Marks and Spencer - Pirates don't even have that standard of decency. You think that pirates somehow prefer to hack big corporations games?, no - they want to be the first to hack a game, any game - whether it's funded and published by Activision, or a solo indi developer just trying to make a living.

Most people don't consider the publisher when downloading an illegal copy of anything, they just want it, and personally I don't think it should be so bloody easy, that anyone and everyone can have it for free. Once people discover how to get stuff for free, they don't all of a sudden decide to start paying again, they might intend to pay for the games they actually like, but how often does that happen. The main saving grace is multiplayer - much more difficult for pirates to hack multiplayer games, so they're more likely to lead to proper sales - but that tends not to apply to indi games. If pirates had any respect for indi developers, they would simply leave those games alone, not hack them anyway and add a karmatically appropriate message about buying the game if you like it. It would be good if this new militant attitude on the internet extended beyond peoples wallets.
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
ACman said:
Look at Louis CK recently and his digital release. He made 1 million dollars in a week. He estimated that that was 5 times more than he would have earned during the entire run if he had gone with a publisher. Now I agree that music an comedy aren't exactly the same as mixing and mastering require more finese but if that's the ratio then I can't see much advantage.
He actually made a million dollars in 27 years and one week. And in that 27 years he's been performing stand up, he's been supported numerous times by various big media conglomerates as he appeared on the David Letterman Show, Jimmy Kimmel, etc not to mention a little company known as HBO releasing his first half hour special in 1996. Then an hour long special in 2007. Then in 2008 Showtime gave him an hour long special as well, and so on, and so on.

Now, would he have been unsuccessful without all this publicity they paid for? Probably not if he's any good as a comedian. But would he have been able to make a million bucks if he hadn't had multiple specials using traditional media companies under his belt already? I highly doubt it.

So to use him as an example of how people can go directly to the public now and thus the media conglomerates are obsolete is to completely ignore the fact that there's a history behind his success. A history that heavily involves the traditional publishing route.


Digital books are going to mean the same thing. Making a physical book is a massive expense. But digitally you can offer the same content for a fraction of the cost. If you get a name through a publisher with one book or have a name for yourself already what is the incentive to go to through that again when you can take all revenue for yourself.
"If you get a name through a publisher" entirely undercuts your argument that you don't need a publisher, as then you've taken the benefit of their marketing and distribution to offline mediums, etc. Now, if you make a name for yourself without a publisher, than you've managed essentially to win the lottery. Congrats. Suggesting that as a viable business model for people probably isn't the greatest way to go, however.
 

weirdee

Swamp Weather Balloon Gas
Apr 11, 2011
2,634
0
0
RobfromtheGulag said:
As a bit of a tangent, it seems like what peeves copyright holders the most is when others take their place, as it were. MegaUpload took 'their' property and 'sold' it in a manner of speaking, if premium memberships or whatnot are taken into account. Like a game store selling burned copies of games.

Anyway, just throwing that out there. I doubt it'd stop the RIAA from suing 12 year olds anyway.
I thought they only sold data storage, management, and priority service.

If they wrote their terms and conditions in a certain way, they'll be able to wriggle out of any personal legal liability.

Of course, the way the court systems work, it's more like a wrestling match than a debate anyway...without the endurance, you lose by default.
 

Metalrocks

New member
Jan 15, 2009
2,406
0
0
?A would fit perfectly in there. since they have ruined westwood because they had a huge success with C&C so ?A thinks they can rip off the fans by making the C&C games bad.

good episode. so true and sad at the same time. people working so hard on a game and in the end the company just rips them off by just cashing in and still cry when someone pirates the game. maybe in the next episode he will mention ?A and probable ubisoft.

a friend of mine thinks that games these days dont deserve these prices they have. he even thinks that 10$ is too much for a game. doesnt matter if its a indie game or not or if the game has been out for years and cheap to get like quake 4 on steam.
for him, paying few $ for a copy is already expensive.
 

Aardvaarkman

I am the one who eats ants!
Jul 14, 2011
1,262
0
0
weirdguy said:
I thought they only sold data storage, management, and priority service.

If they wrote their terms and conditions in a certain way, they'll be able to wriggle out of any personal legal liability.
You'd be wrong about that. MegaUpload actively encouraged and financially rewarded the sharing of unauthorised material. They repeatedly ignored takedown requests from copyright holders. They weren't just innocent bystanders running a file storage service. The intention of the service was clearly to profit from the distribution of illicit material.

It would be nice if people actually had some grasp of the facts before commenting, rather than just repeating mythical fantasies.
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
Aardvaarkman said:
weirdguy said:
I thought they only sold data storage, management, and priority service.

If they wrote their terms and conditions in a certain way, they'll be able to wriggle out of any personal legal liability.
You'd be wrong about that. MegaUpload actively encouraged and financially rewarded the sharing of unauthorised material. They repeatedly ignored takedown requests from copyright holders. They weren't just innocent bystanders running a file storage service. The intention of the service was clearly to profit from the distribution of illicit material.

It would be nice if people actually had some grasp of the facts before commenting, rather than just repeating mythical fantasies.
Wasn't that guy that is being extradited to the states in the same boat? He had multiple orders against him to to stop what he was doing, but the dumb kid decided to say fuck all, and now has to be made an example out of? He snuffed his nose at the states, and now they are going to make him realize his folly, eh?

When you profit from piracy, I vote for the trial by fire/punishment by fire method. These kids aren't going to learn otherwise.

People don't seem to realize that creators of a product have the right to decide how their IP is distributed.

double sigh
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
Aardvaarkman said:
weirdguy said:
I thought they only sold data storage, management, and priority service.

If they wrote their terms and conditions in a certain way, they'll be able to wriggle out of any personal legal liability.
You'd be wrong about that. MegaUpload actively encouraged and financially rewarded the sharing of unauthorised material. They repeatedly ignored takedown requests from copyright holders. They weren't just innocent bystanders running a file storage service. The intention of the service was clearly to profit from the distribution of illicit material.

It would be nice if people actually had some grasp of the facts before commenting, rather than just repeating mythical fantasies.
Wasn't that guy that is being extradited to the states in the same boat? He had multiple orders against him to to stop what he was doing, but the dumb kid decided to say fuck all, and now has to be made an example out of? He snuffed his nose at the states, and now they are going to make him realize his folly, eh?

When you profit from piracy, I vote for the trial by fire/punishment by fire method. These kids aren't going to learn otherwise.

People don't seem to realize that creators of a product have the right to decide how their IP is distributed.

double sigh
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
frankly the publishers know their days are numbered and are trying to not only delay the inevitable but destroy anyone who gets in their way.

im finding most of the games i get now are indy games. not because of a conscious choice to go indy but because thats where you find the creativity its where you find the niche games that wont see a retail shelf ever.

i dont usually comment on your videos mr sterling but for once i will. i dont blame you in the slightest and its an example of how bad things are getting when someone who once supported anti piracy now saying screw them
 

Jimothy Sterling

New member
Apr 18, 2011
5,976
0
0
Yup, I could respect both Copyright (and largely Patent law) if it hadn't been turned into such a mockery of what it should be intended to do, protect the creators of certain works...

Companies are constantly lobbying for Copyright Extensions: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Copyright_Term_Extension_Act up to a ridiculous amount of years:
The Copyright Term Extension Act (CTEA) of 1998 extended copyright terms in the United States by 20 years. Since the Copyright Act of 1976, copyright would last for the life of the author plus 50 years, or 75 years for a work of corporate authorship. The Act extended these terms to life of the author plus 70 years and for works of corporate authorship to 120 years after creation or 95 years after publication, whichever endpoint is earlier.[1] Copyright protection for works published prior to January 1, 1978, was increased by 20 years to a total of 95 years from their publication date.
certain things like early Disney figures or the likes of Superman would be "Public Domain" e.g. a cultural good for everyone to use as they see fit, but for Superman for instance this was extended to 2033, and till we're there it'll be extended yet again... same with music and movies, some "made" it into public domain and are allowed to distributed and viewed freely: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_films_in_the_public_domain_in_the_United_States#Films but now there's new possibilities to "renew" copyrights and they're also lobbying to have the length of a copyright increased.

Aside from that, certain laws have been so far extended, that almost everyone is a "criminal"... ever photocopied a paper article and showed it to someone else? You're guilty of copyright infringement. Ever had a party with people you didn't directly know while music was running? You're guilty of copyright infringement. Ever used a picture of some other work on the internet as your avatar or some article you've written? You're guilty of copyright infringement.

Oh yeah, historians are also investigating if the lack of a Copyright Law and Patents actually helped countries like Germany outpace the British Empire who had them in place, all but hindering advancement: http://arstechnica.com/telecom/news/2010/08/drool-britannia-did-weak-copyright-laws-help-germany-outpace-the-united-kingdom.ars
Imagine if everyone was legally free to read and contribute to public knowledge and if patents would only give companies a few years head-start (like 3-5) to make use of the developed technology, upon which it turns "free to use" for everyone, going into a cycle of perpetually improving and innovating on what already exists without having to worry about patent trolling (companies buying large amounts of patents "just in case" to safeguard themselves and products being banned from a market because they "look similar" to other products e.g. look at Samsung vs Apple).

I made a thread about it here, titled "Piracy - It's Not a Black & White Issue" with a lot of arguments I could bring up and a bunch of sources, unfortunately it got locked after a while...
http://www.escapistmagazine.com/forums/read/9.338788-Piracy-Its-not-a-Black-White-Issue#13708335
 

008Zulu_v1legacy

New member
Sep 6, 2009
6,019
0
0
Nurb said:
What might start changing things, is that independent developers form some sort of agreement not to sell their IP to a publisher without retaining rights or regaining rights after a length of time.

They make this known through the industry, and encourage new and growing developers to join in their agreement, basically creating a pool of new ideas and content as time passes that the corporate publisher fucks can't have access to unless they agree to contracts that allow creators to retain rights.

Obviously this would only work if developers maintain the agreement and gain enough numbers and support that the publishers won't be as quick to pass over because they can't own everything forever and can't snatch up new ideas as easily.

It'd be a long shot, but it's just a thought since solidarity among smaller developers could eventually stand up against big publisher owning copyrights to others' stuff.
Works in theory, until the publisher steals the indie's idea, changes a few details provided by their ample supply of lawyers, and sell the game to undercut the original.

Of course, it would also help if indie developers didn't get in to developing just to sell out their idea to a company for a six figure sum.
 

Jelly ^.^

New member
Mar 11, 2010
525
0
0
"If you disagree with that, fuck off, ya fuckin' thief. Worse than OJ Simpson. That's what you are, worse than OJ Simpson."

You are now worse than OJ Simpson, Jim.
 

ACman

New member
Apr 21, 2011
629
0
0
Kwil said:
He actually made a million dollars in 27 years and one week. And in that 27 years he's been performing stand up

Now, if you make a name for yourself without a publisher, than you've managed essentially to win the lottery.
So the fact that he can do without publishers isn't significant? Surely that's gotta make them nervous. What if every name they have suddenly decides to go down this route? Doesn't that significantly reduce the publisher talent pool/revenue?

Isn't the fact that you can go directly to the public bypassing the publishers significant? What if start selling one album or single to publishers and then go online with the rest of their music?

Isn't the fact that the lowered barriers

Quite often getting published is simply winning the lottery. The lowered bar of entry means that you can get yourself an audience through other means simply by releasing stuff on the when until someone, (anyone now it doesn't have to be a publisher) takes notice.

I'm not saying that there isn't a place for marketing but the old publisher model for music and books is done. All you need to put music into the world is a room with decent accoutics and a computer, a youtube and a MySpace account. All you need to publish a novel is computer and an Amazon digital publishing account. Suddenly the actual service a "publishing company" is offering you isn't publish at all; it's marketing (A different business model).
 

Pebkio

The Purple Mage
Nov 9, 2009
780
0
0
Sober Thal said:
Wasn't that guy that is being extradited to the states in the same boat? He had multiple orders against him to to stop what he was doing, but the dumb kid decided to say fuck all, and now has to be made an example out of? He snuffed his nose at the states, and now they are going to make him realize his folly, eh?

When you profit from piracy, I vote for the trial by fire/punishment by fire method. These kids aren't going to learn otherwise.

People don't seem to realize that creators of a product have the right to decide how their IP is distributed.

double sigh
I take umbrage with what you've said. I've taken umbrage with a lot of what you've said, but this especially. America is not the world police or authority. That kid's country didn't have laws against posting links. What you've just called is imperialist fascism that's based on out-dated laws that are ill-equipped to handle the abilities of modern technology.
I'm going to ask you to stop, because you're representing America in a horrible light. Go do something else, please?

And you!
Jelly ^.^ said:
"If you disagree with that, fuck off, ya fuckin' thief. Worse than OJ Simpson. That's what you are, worse than OJ Simpson."

You are now worse than OJ Simpson, Jim.
Oh yes, acting factitious in a web video... is as bad as murder (alleged, I guess), blackmail, drug-trafficking, and resisting arrest. What an obviously trollish thing to say. You seriously need to go outside... get some perspective.
 

UbarElite

New member
Feb 16, 2008
94
0
0
Part of me does in fact wonder how much richer companies would be if they spent nothing on DRM (which doesn't work anyway) and bribing politicians, or lobbying, if you prefer. That is a lot of money that is currently not getting you anywhere...