Prosecutors Drop Charges in Xbox 360 Modding Trial

Charli

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Well good, I'm actually glad, this was almost close to destroying a man's life to prove a point, no middle ground suggested, poorly constructed case, and questionable ground in itself in regards to the technology and the ethics surrounding this type of thing.

He should though just stop what he does, I'm sure the scare will be enough to stop him asking money for it at least, can probably keep doing it for friends and the like but, I would stop until there is a clear law instated about this sort of thing.

I do myself find it a bit questionable to alter and allow for ...lets say 'iffy' and unofficial software to be used on a piece of technology which can potentially allow for illegal acquisition of media and then charging money for the service. HOWEVER, putting a man away for it? Have you gone batty?
 

RhombusHatesYou

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Dexter111 said:
I wouldn't be so sure about that, they probably just dismissed the case themselves because they saw their chances waning of getting a beneficial ruling out of it (with a seemingly "biased judge") creating a precedent for more cases and general fearmongering.
That's exactly what would have happened. The government didn't want to set a precedent that would basically pull the teeth from the DMCA's copy protection circumvention provisions.

The fact that this resulted from the presiding judge not putting up with their cock ups and corner cutting just makes it funny.
 

John Funk

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Charli said:
Well good, I'm actually glad, this was almost close to destroying a man's life to prove a point, no middle ground suggested, poorly constructed case, and questionable ground in itself in regards to the technology and the ethics surrounding this type of thing.

He should though just stop what he does, I'm sure the scare will be enough to stop him asking money for it at least, can probably keep doing it for friends and the like but, I would stop until there is a clear law instated about this sort of thing.

I do myself find it a bit questionable to alter and allow for ...lets say 'iffy' and unofficial software to be used on a piece of technology which can potentially allow for illegal acquisition of media and then charging money for the service. HOWEVER, putting a man away for it? Have you gone batty?
Well, would it bother you if your DVD player refused to play burned discs?
 

RhombusHatesYou

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Charli said:
I do myself find it a bit questionable to alter and allow for ...lets say 'iffy' and unofficial software to be used on a piece of technology which can potentially allow for illegal acquisition of media and then charging money for the service.
See that 'potentially' you put up there? That's very important in legal matters because it means there are also other uses it could be put to, actions that are entirely legal.
 

RhombusHatesYou

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Garak73 said:
Well, would it bother you if your DVD player refused to play burned discs?
Or imports... If the DMCA existed back when most DVD players shipped region locked we'd still be forced to put up with it because it was the popularity of backyard regioning fixes that made the manufacturers rethink the whole deal... and that shit would have been illegal under the DMCA.
 

RhombusHatesYou

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General_Potatoes said:
Don't most people mod their 360 to play pirated games?
Most people I know with modded 360s use them for playing imports and back ups...

Which is to say, no one knows for sure what most modded 360s are used for. It's not like there was a questionnaire passed around and even if there was most of the pirates would have lied.
 

John Funk

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Fumbleumble said:
John Funk said:
Fumbleumble said:
They had a TRIAL ATTORNEY on the jury?

Is this regular practice in the states?

As far as I understand it, that kind of practice is considered a conflict of interest in the UK to have members of the legal establishment sit in as part of a deciding jury, I could be wrong.. and if I am, please correct me.. it just sounds pretty bad.

(I'm interested in a REAL answer to this.. so, no supposition please, if you don't actually 'know', then any answer you give isn't going to help.)

Anyway.. I certainly give kudos to the Judge for being so upstanding about this, it wasn't something I expected from the US judicial system when corporate entities are involved.
As long as there was no particular conflict of interest regarding any of the parties involved, there's no reason why he couldn't be there. Going into law doesn't suddenly exempt oneself from jury duty.

Both prosecutors and defense attorneys need to agree on jurors, so if either side thought there would have been a conflict he wouldn't have been allowed.
Thanks for the answer... but WOW, that's a bit of an eye opener. The legal system is even worse that I thought :(
Er, I don't see how this is a bad thing. The entire point of a jury is that it's an unbiased group of citizens of all walks of life. Choosing law as your profession shouldn't disqualify you at all.

Again, both the prosecution and defense must agree on the twelve jurors. If either group thinks there is a conflict of interest, they can dismiss any juror the feel like.
 

zelda2fanboy

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"Presumably, Rosario's statement was an attempt to convince jurors that Crippen knew that what he was doing was against the law - a key question in order to establish guilt."

That's a defense now? Gee, I didn't know murder was against the law, officer. Is this law so shoddily written that they have to paint him as a supervillain just to enforce it?
 

Charli

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RhombusHatesYou said:
Charli said:
I do myself find it a bit questionable to alter and allow for ...lets say 'iffy' and unofficial software to be used on a piece of technology which can potentially allow for illegal acquisition of media and then charging money for the service.
See that 'potentially' you put up there? That's very important in legal matters because it means there are also other uses it could be put to, actions that are entirely legal.
I should have been more clear, I leave that issue up to courts and people versed in law, the only problem I had with him was charging money for it... I'm not sure that was the smart thing to do, just knowing what lengths companies go to 'protect' their property.

It's really a personal opinion, I wouldn't do something like that unless it was my own console because I'm paranoid of these ridiculous crusades... *looks at dismantled Wii*
 

John Funk

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I am not understanding why he is wrong to charge money to mod an XBOX. Do people charge money to mod a car? Do people charge money to repair an XBOX?

If modding is illegal then THAT should be the problem, not that he charged for it. If it isn't then charging for a LEGAL service shouldn't be a problem.
 

Danpascooch

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Dammit! They obviously didn't pursue this because it was in the defendants favor, and that would have set precedent that they can't persecute for this.

I wish they hadn't dropped the charges so the precedent could be set
 

RhombusHatesYou

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zelda2fanboy said:
"Presumably, Rosario's statement was an attempt to convince jurors that Crippen knew that what he was doing was against the law - a key question in order to establish guilt."

That's a defense now? Gee, I didn't know murder was against the law, officer.
That's not what they mean at all. Using a pirated game (and what if he was just using his own backed up game to test the system? what about that?) to show the system could play them would have been evidence that Crippen was not only aware of the ability to use modded consoles to play such games but was also displaying such ability to customers as a desirable outcome... which, in plain english, means he'd have shown intent for his mods to be used for playing pirated games and that would have taken a large shit on his grounds for defence on principles of 'fair use'.


Is this law so shoddily written that they have to paint him as a supervillain just to enforce it?
Not really. The prosecution fucked up badly and were trying to recover from it.
 

SelectivelyEvil13

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Well that is good news to hear, indeed. These types of legal actions are the types of movements that all consumers should take note of for our own collective betterment. The treatment over a modded console should match that of a rooted phones as the crime of piracy is otherwise being assumed rather than proven. Modifying a video console in it of itself is being treated like "thought crime."

But what I find especially sickening is the blur between "ownership" and what is essentially leasing a product under a corporation's license. Since when did a cash transferal equate to complying with and signing a document specifying your "rights" with the item in question? Is there a EULA for a pound of bananas I bought from Dole that I should be aware of as well? I would hate to face a prison term for breaching an imaginary contract at the bottom of my receipt stating that those bananas could only be used for banana nut muffins and not banana nutbread.
 

John Funk

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If he was using a backup of a game he owned to show that it worked, then he wasn't showing that it could be used to play pirated games, he was showing that it could be used to play backed up games.
 

John Funk

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SelectivelyEvil13 said:
Well that is good news to hear, indeed. These types of legal actions are the types of movements that all consumers should take note of for our own collective betterment. The treatment over a modded console should match that of a rooted phones as the crime of piracy is otherwise being assumed rather than proven. Modifying a video console in it of itself is being treated like "thought crime."

But what I find especially sickening is the blur between "ownership" and what is essentially leasing a product under a corporation's license. Since when did a cash transferal equate to complying with and signing a document specifying your "rights" with the item in question? Is there a EULA for a pound of bananas I bought from Dole that I should be aware of as well? I would hate to face a prison term for breaching an imaginary contract at the bottom of my receipt stating that those bananas could only be used for banana nut muffins and not banana nutbread.
The game industry thinks it's special. They think they can get away with renting both the hardware and software to you at full price.

Gamers need to wake up and stop supporting such nonsense before they find themselves needing to ask permission to even turn on the hardware (sort of like always online software).
 

RhombusHatesYou

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Charli said:
I should have been more clear, I leave that issue up to courts and people versed in law, the only problem I had with him was charging money for it... I'm not sure that was the smart thing to do, just knowing what lengths companies go to 'protect' their property.
Probably wasn't the smartest thing to do in a country with any law like the DMCA, no... but then again, if he was certain that he was covered under fair use, then why not make a few extra dollars? Admittedly, he was charging a lot for a simple firmware hack (I know people who'll do the same thing for AU$20 and it's a 15 minute job but then again it's mostly legal to mod consoles here...in fact, region locking has been classified as a resitrictive trade practice in Australia. HA!)
 

RhombusHatesYou

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Garak73 said:
Gamers need to wake up and stop supporting such nonsense before they find themselves needing to ask permission to even turn on the hardware (sort of like always online software).
Gamers need to start demanding to read the EULA before handing over any money for any software or hardware.

Of course trying to get any coherent action out of gamers is like herding cats... hyperactive, self-entitled cats. Dosed up on methamphetamine.
 

mindlesspuppet

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I wish this trial had played out to set some future precedent but this just goes to show you the government didn't have much of a case. The laws are overly vague and made no mention of circumventing protection for devices that had ample legit purposes.
 

John Funk

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Dec 20, 2005
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Just like the O.J. and Rod Blagojevich trials, some prosecutors are just plain stupid.

We still have a chance to get Rod tho.

Oh yeah, this criminal had better make sure he pays his taxes for this 'side business' of his.