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(PC Magazine)   An open letter to EA: I farking told you this would happen   (pcmag.com) divider line 379
    More: Asinine, SimCity, copy protection  
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13306 clicks; posted to Geek » on 08 Mar 2013 at 2:02 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-03-08 05:07:09 PM
FTFA: Also, a prediction for the future: if you release an expansion or paid DLC to make the extremely small city areas bigger (instead of making it a free fix for one of the game's legitimate mechanical flaws), people are going to be unhappy all over again. We're all expecting it, and none of us are going to appreciate it when it happens.

Actually, if EA wants to salvage any goodwill they have left, they should let people know that if you purchased and activated the game while the servers were down, the first DLC pack will be free. Seeing as they are not giving refunds, it would be the least they could do.

/they won't do it
 
2013-03-08 05:08:26 PM

scottydoesntknow: Also, a prediction for the future: if you release an expansion or paid DLC to make the extremely small city areas bigger (instead of making it a free fix for one of the game's legitimate mechanical flaws), people are going to be unhappy all over again. We're all expecting it, and none of us are going to appreciate it when it happens.

Subway DLC. Book it. Done.


And the people who have already bought the game will be compelled to buy it.

DLC is an amazing exercise in social engineering.
 
2013-03-08 05:10:27 PM

Girion47: FarkGrudge: Teiritzamna: We could of course have the more reasonable discussion about cost/benefit.  Here, it seems, EA's attempted security was woefully more expensive than the harms it would prevent.  Indeed, the phenomenon i was attempting to discuss above likely means that their security actually encouraged more unlawful acts.

So i would be quite happy to say that in this instance EA's poorly implemented DRM "does not work and is, in fact, completely and utterly pointless"

...is it much of a leap then to say that many games with "always-on" DRM are as poorly implemented?  Some here are extending this sentiment to all games with "always-online" DRM are poorly implemented, though I cannot personally throw my hat in with this crowd (due to ignorancy).

My own person experience certainly suggests it, however (can't express the frustration of one of my  available times to play Diablo 3 is during their weekly server maintenance for a game I always play solo). If I knew of a pirated version of Diablo 3 that let me play solo, I'd have been all over it (even after legitimately purchasing it).

The real problem with this, is that if you look forward by evaluating another industry that's a little ahead in the DRM battle (ie, the movie industry) you will see that the motivation (not justification) for piracy is often the limitations placed on owned software by the DRM itself, which is the sole reason people are so outraged by it.  If DRM can be put in that has NO impact on legitimate owners, then it'd be accepted without hesitation.  But, it never seems to be able to be, as in this case (ie, servers are greatly struggling preventing solo-play).


[Cool-story bro Begins]

Another example of this is I had recently finally upgraded to a big 1080p TV and wanted to start purchasing blu-ray version of movies and add them to my digital DVD collection I have on my media server in my house.  The point of the media server is obvious:  I have several devices that I like to watch mov ...


I recently decided to go the route of paying for AnyDVD HD and ripping my BDVDs.  If one has the storage for it, it's nice to be in control of the ripping and re-encoding process rather than relying on third party up-loaders.  Plus I do it all at home, so no possible BS torrent allegations.

http://www.slysoft.com/en/anydvdhd.html
 
2013-03-08 05:13:28 PM

BafflerMeal: Girion47: FarkGrudge: Teiritzamna: We could of course have the more reasonable discussion about cost/benefit.  Here, it seems, EA's attempted security was woefully more expensive than the harms it would prevent.  Indeed, the phenomenon i was attempting to discuss above likely means that their security actually encouraged more unlawful acts.

So i would be quite happy to say that in this instance EA's poorly implemented DRM "does not work and is, in fact, completely and utterly pointless"

...is it much of a leap then to say that many games with "always-on" DRM are as poorly implemented?  Some here are extending this sentiment to all games with "always-online" DRM are poorly implemented, though I cannot personally throw my hat in with this crowd (due to ignorancy).

My own person experience certainly suggests it, however (can't express the frustration of one of my  available times to play Diablo 3 is during their weekly server maintenance for a game I always play solo). If I knew of a pirated version of Diablo 3 that let me play solo, I'd have been all over it (even after legitimately purchasing it).

The real problem with this, is that if you look forward by evaluating another industry that's a little ahead in the DRM battle (ie, the movie industry) you will see that the motivation (not justification) for piracy is often the limitations placed on owned software by the DRM itself, which is the sole reason people are so outraged by it.  If DRM can be put in that has NO impact on legitimate owners, then it'd be accepted without hesitation.  But, it never seems to be able to be, as in this case (ie, servers are greatly struggling preventing solo-play).


[Cool-story bro Begins]

Another example of this is I had recently finally upgraded to a big 1080p TV and wanted to start purchasing blu-ray version of movies and add them to my digital DVD collection I have on my media server in my house.  The point of the media server is obvious:  I have several devices that I like to ...


still violates the DMCA.
 
2013-03-08 05:15:44 PM
The pizza you failed to sell was cold and was loaded with two pounds of anchovy.

When you tossed it out, I ate it after replacing the anchovy with fresh tomatoes and mozarella and heating it up. Your dough is pretty okay; maybe people would actually buy your pizza if it was warm and you made the two pounds of anchovy optional.
 
2013-03-08 05:17:13 PM
This is why I never buy a game on the first day it comes out.
Wait, I mean:
This is why I never buy a game. There.
 
2013-03-08 05:17:35 PM

Teiritzamna: long answer: Like most things involving stopping people from obtaining products unlawfully, there is an arms race. At some point, the cost of securing the product exceeds the costs of it being obtained illegally. That would be the reasonable stopping point. I dont know of any security measure, electronic or real world based, that prevents anyone from obtaining property unlawfully, if that intended tortfeasor really wants to obtain it unlawfully. However, to say that therefore all security "does not work and is, in fact, completely and utterly pointless" seems to be overly broad.


Here's the problem:  The cost of it being obtained illegally has never, ever been quantified.  Organizations like the BSA and the ESA like to assume a 1:1 relationship between pirated copies and lost sales, but that is not and has never been the case; it's equally likely to be 0:1 as 1:1, and the truth, most assuredly, lies somewhere in between those two extremes (IMHO, it's most likely closer to 0:1 than 1:1, but I could be wrong).  DRM may even be causing these companies to lose money, if the number of people who swear off a game due to restrictive DRM (whether this means they pirate it or they don't play it at all, they are the same to the bottom line of the project) is greater than the number of pirates who end up buying it due to the presence of the DRM, or even if the two figures are roughly equal (DRM isn't free, after all).

And I'll be totally honest; the number of would-be pirates who end up buying a game due to DRM, in most cases, is 0 or close to it, since most DRM is cracked before the game is even released.

In short, even if the DRM were absolutely 100% perfect, it'd have some proving to do before it could be shown to serve its intended purpose (that is, to drive more sales).  Since it's far from perfect, and in fact poses little-to-no hindrance on piracy in a practical sense, I stand by my original statement; it's completely and utterly pointless.
 
2013-03-08 05:19:34 PM

Teiritzamna: JesusJuice: Justify? I don't justify anything when I pirate.

Ah how refreshing, a person who doesn't blame the corporation but instead admits that they want to obtain something unlawfully and there is nothing the company can do to stop that.

JesusJuice: It's quicker and easier to pirate than to buy and pirates actually get a better product free of all the advertisements and garbage publishers tack on.

Wait . . . i thought you said you weren't going to try to justify your malfeasance . . . .

JesusJuice: Well, maybe making it not be a pain in the ass to purchase and install would be a good start.

[rlv.zcache.ca image 400x400]
Thanks, however, for being exactly the guy i was discussing.  It helps when the hypo examples show up to make your point for you.


Explaining why you do something is not the same as justifying it.  Below you will find two helpful examples to help you understand.  Let me know if you're still confused.


Not Justifying

Cop:  Why did you steal this bicycle?
Thief:  Because I liked it and I didn't think I'd get caught.

Justifying

Cop:  Why did you steal this bicycle?
Thief:  Well, I actually meant to buy it eventually but I figured there would be know harm in riding it around a bit first.  Besides, the cashier is such a pain in the ass that I just didn't want to deal with her so really it's the stores fault.
 
2013-03-08 05:22:01 PM
Gonna go home tonight and buy SimCity 2000 for $5.99 on PSN. Is there a new SimCity game out or something?
 
2013-03-08 05:22:19 PM
I like how every screen shot I've seen of SimCity so far has been of burning buildings.
 
2013-03-08 05:23:22 PM

JesusJuice: bicycle


This only works if you are stealing a bicycle.
 
2013-03-08 05:23:25 PM

Obbi: What the hell point do you have, anyway? It seems more like you're going for a general statement like "the sky is blue, sometimes" rather than any actual attempt at a point worth discussion.


Ok, let me do it nice and easy:

(1) People will always attempt to obtain products that cost money without paying.  There is no moral/ethical/legal justification for this act, but it is a fact of life.
(2) Companies produce products.
(3) Sometimes those products are modified to be less than good.
(4) Many people will still buy the products and biatch about them. This is justifiable.
(5) Many others will find the company's modifications to be objectionable and will refrain from buying.  This is also justifiable.
(6) However some people, the people discussed in (1) will obtain the product unlawfully.
(7) As noted this is a fact of life.
(8) Those tortfeasors will then say, I am justified in obtaining the product unlawfully because of the company's modifications.

What I am, discussing is (8) NOT (6)

I am discussing the phenomenon where people who are acting unlawfully and without justification use the poor decisions of another (the company) to justify their unlawful acts.   Its where people who have decided that they have a right to products without paying for them then also attempt to cast themselves as the hero in some melodrama where they strike a blow against the big, bad companies.

Its silly, and is totally undercut by the fact that there is a 100% morally/ethically/legally justified way of sticking it to those companies - (5) - they can just refrain from purchasing.
 
2013-03-08 05:23:47 PM

Teiritzamna: Theft of services


Those all involve actual costs to the companies involved.
Meter tampering? Generation and distribution costs.
Evading bill? Opportunity cost.
Fare jumping? Fuel and maintenance costs.

I am against pirating, but Theft of Services is not applicable.
 
2013-03-08 05:26:00 PM

fisker: JesusJuice: bicycle

This only works if you are stealing a bicycle.


media.tumblr.com
 
2013-03-08 05:28:13 PM
So people didn't learn from Spore, huh?
 
2013-03-08 05:29:12 PM
It's funny that all of this comes around the same time that the godfather of modern computer role-playing, Richard Garriott (who's company -- Origin -- was devoured by EA back in the 90s), is announcing his return to the Ultima franchise with a new type of game that is technically single-player but you can invite your social circle to play it with you in a kind of MMO format.
 
2013-03-08 05:29:42 PM

HeartBurnKid: And I'll be totally honest; the number of would-be pirates who end up buying a game due to DRM, in most cases, is 0 or close to it, since most DRM is cracked before the game is even released.


Notch (of Minecraft fame) wrote an excellent article a couple years ago regarding piracy and DRM: How Piracy Works

Exerpt:
If someone pirates Minecraft instead of buying it, it means I've lost some "potential" revenue. Not actual revenue, as I can never go into debt by people pirating the game too much, but I might've made even more if that person had bought the game instead. But what if that person likes that game, talks about it to his or her friends, and then I manage to convince three of them to buy the game? I'd make three actual sales instead of blocking out the potentially missed sale of the original person which never cost me any money in the first case.
 
2013-03-08 05:31:18 PM

Teiritzamna: (1) People will always attempt to obtain products that cost money without paying.


Or they choose to pay for products that are going to be free.


/fark EA. I'm happy -- Ultima is coming back!!!
 
2013-03-08 05:32:36 PM

HeartBurnKid: See also [art.penny-arcade.com image 800x408]

The fact that you can have that conversation is proof that DRM does not work and is, in fact, completely and utterly pointless.



More importantly, the person making the "pro-pirate" statements IS LITERALLY A STRAWMAN.
 
2013-03-08 05:32:39 PM

Teiritzamna: (8) Those tortfeasors will then say, I am justified in obtaining the product unlawfully because of the company's modifications.


Actually, I have yet to see anyone make that claim outright. And even if they did, the problem with you spending time whiteknighting over it is you have to pretend you didnt put

Teiritzamna: (7) As noted this is a fact of life.

 
2013-03-08 05:34:33 PM

Teiritzamna: Obbi: What the hell point do you have, anyway? It seems more like you're going for a general statement like "the sky is blue, sometimes" rather than any actual attempt at a point worth discussion.

Ok, let me do it nice and easy:

(1) People will always attempt to obtain products that cost money without paying.  There is no moral/ethical/legal justification for this act, but it is a fact of life.
(2) Companies produce products.
(3) Sometimes those products are modified to be less than good.
(4) Many people will still buy the products and biatch about them. This is justifiable.
(5) Many others will find the company's modifications to be objectionable and will refrain from buying.  This is also justifiable.
(6) However some people, the people discussed in (1) will obtain the product unlawfully.
(7) As noted this is a fact of life.
(8) Those tortfeasors will then say, I am justified in obtaining the product unlawfully because of the company's modifications.

What I am, discussing is (8) NOT (6)

I am discussing the phenomenon where people who are acting unlawfully and without justification use the poor decisions of another (the company) to justify their unlawful acts.   Its where people who have decided that they have a right to products without paying for them then also attempt to cast themselves as the hero in some melodrama where they strike a blow against the big, bad companies.

Its silly, and is totally undercut by the fact that there is a 100% morally/ethically/legally justified way of sticking it to those companies - (5) - they can just refrain from purchasing.


It's wrong to pirate.  I get it.  I don't care.

So farking what?  It doesn't change the fact that a lot of people who would otherwise buy the game choose not to do so because it's easier to pirate.  People will do what they always do and follow the path of least resistance.  The problem won't be fixed by getting up on a soapbox and chastising everyone, it will be solved when paying for the game is as easy as pirating it, and when paying customers actually get as good a product as the pirates.  Like a teenybopper in a miniskirt walking alone through Compton at 3am, it doesn't make what happens right, but it sure is predictable.
 
2013-03-08 05:35:29 PM
Played for 3 hours last night and really enjoyed it. Now I haven't logged on to see if it's still there, but I dont care. It's my first city and it's on a really small map with only 2 other players so I dont plan to mess with it for too long.

That and I had to play with base graphics because I needed a better graphics card for the shiny stuff.

That card is sitting in my car right now, so happy.
 
2013-03-08 05:36:19 PM

Teiritzamna: Obbi: What the hell point do you have, anyway? It seems more like you're going for a general statement like "the sky is blue, sometimes" rather than any actual attempt at a point worth discussion.

Ok, let me do it nice and easy:

(1) People will always attempt to obtain products that cost money without paying.  There is no moral/ethical/legal justification for this act, but it is a fact of life.
(2) Companies produce products.
(3) Sometimes those products are modified to be less than good.
(4) Many people will still buy the products and biatch about them. This is justifiable.
(5) Many others will find the company's modifications to be objectionable and will refrain from buying.  This is also justifiable.
(6) However some people, the people discussed in (1) will obtain the product unlawfully.
(7) As noted this is a fact of life.
(8) Those tortfeasors will then say, I am justified in obtaining the product unlawfully because of the company's modifications.

What I am, discussing is (8) NOT (6)

I am discussing the phenomenon where people who are acting unlawfully and without justification use the poor decisions of another (the company) to justify their unlawful acts.   Its where people who have decided that they have a right to products without paying for them then also attempt to cast themselves as the hero in some melodrama where they strike a blow against the big, bad companies.

Its silly, and is totally undercut by the fact that there is a 100% morally/ethically/legally justified way of sticking it to those companies - (5) - they can just refrain from purchasing.


The problem with #5?  There's no negative feedback for the company to change it's ways.
 
2013-03-08 05:37:31 PM

Great Janitor: The video game industry is about to die, and the problem is the software companies attempts at ending piracy and used gaming that's going to cause it, sadly, they are too stupid to actually realize it, and when the video game industry tanks, they will go down blaming pirates while ignoring failures like this.

How bad is the video game industry doing?  I have friends who work at the Gamestop Corporate office.  Years ago, Gamestop used to be on the Fortune 500.  Gamestop had piles of money and they used it to do upgrade sections of the corporate office, they bought some off site property to expand their refurbishment department, picked up several companies to expand their brand.  Now, in late January they eliminated several positions in the corporate office as well as closed over 80 stores, dissolving several districts.  Right now is annual review time and so far everyone who's gotten their review back has had poor reviews.  Some think that the company might be gearing up for another round of lay offs, others think the poor reviews are Gamestop's way of avoiding payraises that they've already announced that they can not afford.  Part of the problem is that it's been six years since a major console was released and with the next gen consoles not expected to be out until Maybe December of this year, it's going to be a hard year for Gamestop.  Another problem for Gamestop is the software company's war against used gaming, and Gamestop is their target (and gamers the victims).  They argue that Gamestop has made a billion dollar empire off of used games, but gives none of that money to the software companies (which makes as much sense as Carmax selling used cars but not sending any of that money to the auto makers).  There are several rumors about the next Playstation and Xbox not allowing used games by requiring online connection to verify that the disk is a new disk, to activation codes to on line only.  All moves that will ultimately kill the video game industry, at le ...


Which is why I have high hopes for companies like InExile and other Kickstarter backed game companies. Crowd sourcing your costs has to prevent screwing your customers doesn't it? I mean if your customers are your source of funding and you screw them with DLC then why would they come back and fund your next venture?
 
2013-03-08 05:39:12 PM
I was at EA's headquarters not too long ago. They still had Dante's Inferno banners hanging over the main entrance. I think that tells you a lot about EA.
 
2013-03-08 05:39:18 PM

pxlboy: On that note, Borderlands 2 is the only game I will actually play online. Maybe because it's fun to begin with.


Borderlands 2 Multiplayer:
1. Log In (painlessly, at that)
2. Load character
3. Notice a friend is playing.
4. Click and join his game.

No backing out of one mode and going to Multiplayer Sessions instead of single session playstyle, no joining LAN, no setting up local servers to join, no entering room names and passwords, just: Hey, I think I'll join them!

This is multiplayer done right.
 
2013-03-08 05:40:52 PM

Dr. Goldshnoz: whiteknighting


blog.angelatung.com

Also, as to the substance of what you were saying, note how (7) does not engender (8) - you can be a tortfeassor without crowing about how your tort was justified.
 
2013-03-08 05:41:03 PM

FarkGrudge: So, here in-lies the actual dilemma I am now faced with: do I go purchase the blu-ray disk and live with the fact that I can no longer add them to my media server library, or do I just pirate them (for free) and have a (from my perspective) better experience with the product? Is it still "immoral" if I first purchase the movie, but then download a pirated copy that does what I actually want it to do?


Personally, I think you'd be justified in downloading a pirated if you already bought the disc, but the law hasn't quite caught up yet with respect to digital technologies.  The bigger issue, however, is that, were it not for piracy, you wouldn't have to jump through all these hoops.  The only reason DRM exists is because we haven't figured out a good way to police piracy so the companies have to do it themselves.  Steam has done a decent job of decreasing piracy for some games, but research has shown that a majority of music and movie/TV pirates haven't changed their piracy habits despite a marked increase in the number of legal streaming and purchase options.
 
2013-03-08 05:41:33 PM

Teiritzamna: 1) EA can eat a dick, mainly because they were bad at DRM, not because of the DRM itself.

2) looks like another thread where people front the old false choice:

I can either (a) get X unlawfully, or (b) get X lawfully but with lots of annoying things attached (DRM, Cable TV to wtach HBO show, trailers, commercials, etc.).

This of course forgets the key third choice:

(c) i can go without.

I just find it really funny that in every one of these threads there is the sense that people are entitled to a thing in exactly the way they want it.  If they cannot buy it exactly the way they want it, they will obtain it unlawfully.  That is not a justification . . . its not even really an excuse. 

If you think EA sucks, you can not buy EA's products.  You have that right.  And if enough people do that, EA will either fold or will need to do what people want.  There is, however, no moral justification for saying EA's policies are dumb, so i will unlawfully obtain their product.


Correct.

I got sick of being fooled into wasting my money on DRM-laden bug-riddled crap fests. So I stopped buying games altogether. I would pirate a few here or there to see if they're worth buying in the past, but after Civ5 I literally gave up games altogether.

I got bored, but eventually I discovered bicycling, which I do instead of games. I have no intention of ever going back to games.

One could reasonably conclude that pirates are actually better for the industry than people who simply don't purchase games. When DRM became too intrusive, they pretty much assured that I would never be interested in games ever again. I can't help but wonder how many people have similar stories. Oh well. Their loss.
 
2013-03-08 05:42:46 PM

peewinkle: Pssssh.  I've been boycotting EA ever since they pulled the plug on Motor World Online, the best racing game of all time.

/they said they needed the server space for Sim City
//they even offered me a free copy of Sim City, I told them to shove it
///get off of my lawn.


Fark your Motor World Online. They killed Mech Warrior Online in late Beta for that almost straight to bargain bin pos. Something like 80% of the testrrs signed a petition to just release as is. No support and we'd pay.
DIAF EA.
 
2013-03-08 05:42:50 PM

Teiritzamna: Obbi: What the hell point do you have, anyway? It seems more like you're going for a general statement like "the sky is blue, sometimes" rather than any actual attempt at a point worth discussion.

Ok, let me do it nice and easy:

(1) People will always attempt to obtain products that cost money without paying.  There is no moral/ethical/legal justification for this act, but it is a fact of life.


Some will. Unfortunately, that is a given.
But, let's admit that the percentage of those are going to do so no matter what you do to prevent them. They are an outlier and not the mainstream.
Making things harder for everyone only drives up the percentage of theft and doesn't create a feeling of comfort for the actual paying consumers.

Seems that the supermarkets have the correct model as they take into account loss when pricing their product. Not that they like theft, and they do police it, but they have an acceptable number that is accounted for.

You would think that at $60 per unit, the publishers do have that part of the equation figured out. The rest seems to be over-reaching.
 
2013-03-08 05:46:02 PM

Girion47: The problem with #5? There's no negative feedback for the company to change it's ways.


Wait what?  How can a loss of sales not be "negative feedback" given that sales is pretty much the major feedback a company gets?
 
2013-03-08 05:46:52 PM

Teiritzamna: Dr. Goldshnoz: ...


Don't move the goal posts now.
 
2013-03-08 05:49:01 PM
LOL, gotta love dumb people though...

On the Amazon link for the page, someone noted that they had "just informed the BBB". Of what? The fact that EA's servers are down? Seriously, you don't inform the Better Business Bureau that you got the product you had ordered, you tell them when you have been ripped off through fraud and stuff, not due to technical difficulties.

Probably the same kind of person who calls 911 for a lost dog because they don't understand the difference between "emergency" and "non-emergency".

/EA really screwed the pooch on this
//What the Hell does SimCity have to offer that's new enough for this many people to buy it?
//Seriously, I thought the game died off 15 years ago.
 
2013-03-08 05:52:08 PM

Teiritzamna: Obbi: What the hell point do you have, anyway? It seems more like you're going for a general statement like "the sky is blue, sometimes" rather than any actual attempt at a point worth discussion.

Ok, let me do it nice and easy:

(1) People will always attempt to obtain products that cost money without paying.  There is no moral/ethical/legal justification for this act, but it is a fact of life.
(2) Companies produce products.
(3) Sometimes those products are modified to be less than good.
(4) Many people will still buy the products and biatch about them. This is justifiable.
(5) Many others will find the company's modifications to be objectionable and will refrain from buying.  This is also justifiable.
(6) However some people, the people discussed in (1) will obtain the product unlawfully.
(7) As noted this is a fact of life.
(8) Those tortfeasors will then say, I am justified in obtaining the product unlawfully because of the company's modifications.

What I am, discussing is (8) NOT (6)

I am discussing the phenomenon where people who are acting unlawfully and without justification use the poor decisions of another (the company) to justify their unlawful acts.   Its where people who have decided that they have a right to products without paying for them then also attempt to cast themselves as the hero in some melodrama where they strike a blow against the big, bad companies.

Its silly, and is totally undercut by the fact that there is a 100% morally/ethically/legally justified way of sticking it to those companies - (5) - they can just refrain from purchasing.


Alright, I'll agree with that.

Sorry, for some reason I thought you were arguing something a bit more broad that basically could be pointed to "a human justifies every action they make."

But yeah, the ones that pirate only add fuel to the fire. EA's approach they've justified that pirates are making them lose money. (some) People then pirate, justifying it because of EA's invasive, restrictive, and overall prohibitive anti-piracy approach.

Though to be fair, with EA I wouldn't hold a lot of faith to in changing their ways even if a game does poorly and wasn't pirated by anyone.
 
2013-03-08 05:52:17 PM

Teiritzamna: Girion47: The problem with #5? There's no negative feedback for the company to change it's ways.

Wait what?  How can a loss of sales not be "negative feedback" given that sales is pretty much the major feedback a company gets?


Because by that logic every single person who didn't buy the game can be considered a lost sale. Unless they vocalize why they didn't purchase it, the company can chalk it up to a loss of interest in the IP, not a disgust of how they're managing the games.
 
2013-03-08 05:52:39 PM
First sign that there might have been a problem?

You love playing SimCity so much you'll pay $60 for it the first day it comes out.
 
2013-03-08 05:52:52 PM

JesusJuice: Like a teenybopper in a miniskirt walking alone through Compton at 3am, it doesn't make what happens right, but it sure is predictable.


Ok, just to check here - are you comparing yourself to a rapist, EA to a teen girl, and DRM as "she was asking for it"?

Because, I am not sure that is the analogy you really want to use.  I mean i get the distinction you are trying to draw, but as someone who does this professionally, i would really suggest staying away from the "i am just like the sex criminal" hypos. 

Also as a note - I do see your point, and i do in fact favor your argument much more than most - in that you are at least honest about the fact that you want to get something without paying for it because it is easier to do so than the alternative.  While i am not in any way saying that EA's maneuvers here are good practice, policy, or business, I will however say that in general without some enforcement it is always easier to get something without paying than to pay.
 
2013-03-08 05:52:52 PM

Pocket Ninja: See, here's the thing. I'm not much of a gamer, period. I don't do online gaming at all. There are only a few games that I enjoy playing for a long time, and those tend to be games that I can immerse myself in and play a little at a time, by myself, for my own amusement (Civilization, Skyrim, etc etc). Back in the day, SimCity was one of those games. And when I heard there was a new one coming out, I got mildly interested. Not ecstatic...I haven't thought about SimCity in years, after all, and didn't know a new one was coming out. But mildly interested. Like, "Huh. You know, maybe I'll download that from Amazon for $60. I enjoyed it before, it could be fun."

But then I found out that it forces me to play online, and that building a real city requires me to collaborate with other people. I don't want to. Why should I have to do that to enjoy a game I've always enjoyed playing by myself? Multiplayer should be an option, not a requirement.

I don't care if the game wants to check to make sure it has a valid license. Fark all that, it doesn't matter to me. But you're going to make me collaborate in a multi-player game? Fark you. I'll never buy that. And I can't believe I'm all that rare in feeling that way. Why the hell would EA turn off that entire segment of its potential audience?


You have described my exact feelings on this matter.  SimCity looked compelling initially, but I made up my mind not to get it when I learned it was always online, always multiplayer.
 
2013-03-08 05:53:13 PM

JesusJuice: fisker: JesusJuice: bicycle

This only works if you are stealing a bicycle.

[media.tumblr.com image 235x206]


Are you a lawyer? I assure you have not missed the point.
 
2013-03-08 05:53:33 PM

Mikey1969: On the Amazon link for the page, someone noted that they had "just informed the BBB". Of what? The fact that EA's servers are down? Seriously, you don't inform the Better Business Bureau that you got the product you had ordered, you tell them when you have been ripped off through fraud and stuff, not due to technical difficulties.


So what do you call it when you are sold a product that does not work and refused a refund?  Because I call it a ripoff.
 
2013-03-08 05:55:28 PM

Teiritzamna: JesusJuice: Like a teenybopper in a miniskirt walking alone through Compton at 3am, it doesn't make what happens right, but it sure is predictable.

Ok, just to check here - are you comparing yourself to a rapist, EA to a teen girl, and DRM as "she was asking for it"?

Because, I am not sure that is the analogy you really want to use.  I mean i get the distinction you are trying to draw, but as someone who does this professionally, i would really suggest staying away from the "i am just like the sex criminal" hypos. 

Also as a note - I do see your point, and i do in fact favor your argument much more than most - in that you are at least honest about the fact that you want to get something without paying for it because it is easier to do so than the alternative.  While i am not in any way saying that EA's maneuvers here are good practice, policy, or business, I will however say that in general without some enforcement it is always easier to get something without paying than to pay.


As you acknowledge this, then surely you must realize that making it even harder to pay and use your paid-for product, while not impeding those who would get it without paying at all, is not a productive approach?
 
2013-03-08 05:55:53 PM

scottydoesntknow: Because by that logic every single person who didn't buy the game can be considered a lost sale. Unless they vocalize why they didn't purchase it, the company can chalk it up to a loss of interest in the IP, not a disgust of how they're managing the games.


You may be surprised to know this, but a media giant like EA has a massive apparatus to find out exactly why sales are below prospected values.  Its not like they are lumbering around blind.  Also, in instances like this, I don't think EA will have any delusions about what caused this game to tank - and that would happen without unlawful obtaining of software.  Finally, even if there was no way for EA to know about lost sales, how are they supposed to know a) about unlawfully obtained product and b) why that product was obtained unlawfully?
 
2013-03-08 05:56:14 PM
Wow, EA's pushing the eject button on Sim City so hard that they're asking online affiliates to stop promoting the game. They're literally wanting to stop selling the game because it's such a PR nightmare now.

Too late now, biatches.
 
2013-03-08 05:56:44 PM

scottydoesntknow: HeartBurnKid: And I'll be totally honest; the number of would-be pirates who end up buying a game due to DRM, in most cases, is 0 or close to it, since most DRM is cracked before the game is even released.

Notch (of Minecraft fame) wrote an excellent article a couple years ago regarding piracy and DRM: How Piracy Works

Exerpt:
If someone pirates Minecraft instead of buying it, it means I've lost some "potential" revenue. Not actual revenue, as I can never go into debt by people pirating the game too much, but I might've made even more if that person had bought the game instead. But what if that person likes that game, talks about it to his or her friends, and then I manage to convince three of them to buy the game? I'd make three actual sales instead of blocking out the potentially missed sale of the original person which never cost me any money in the first case.


Well also how many 14 year olds with no money will pirate your game, play it a lot, and then end up buying all the sequels (and the original game when it appears on GOG or Steam for nostalgia purposes) some years later once they actually start earning their own money. In this case even if you manage successful DRM and stop piracy you gain nothing now, and lose money in the future. I mean if I had got a pirated version of Resident Evil back in the day and liked it, I would probably have bought all the more recent ones, but because I never played the early ones I have no interest in joining the story midway through.

Ultimately for me the idea that there is this big portion of gamers that has lots of money but pirates games anyway, and that at some point there will be enough DRM on a game to turn them into paying customers willing to buy dozens of games every year at launch day prices is completely laughable.
 
2013-03-08 05:57:29 PM

scottydoesntknow: Teiritzamna: Girion47: The problem with #5? There's no negative feedback for the company to change it's ways.

Wait what?  How can a loss of sales not be "negative feedback" given that sales is pretty much the major feedback a company gets?

Because by that logic every single person who didn't buy the game can be considered a lost sale. Unless they vocalize why they didn't purchase it, the company can chalk it up to a loss of interest in the IP, not a disgust of how they're managing the games.


They're free to vocalize. It's illegal to pirate a copy of their product as your platform of vocalization, however.

I think you raise a good point, though. There's really not that well paved avenue for people that want to express why they passed on purchasing a game. This seems really counter-intuitive from a business standpoint. I'm a developer for a company and we take prospective client feedback constantly and let them express what they don't like about our products. This lets us address these points. Later, our product is not as bad because we addressed people's problems with it.

EA bans people that express even the slightest bit of negativity about their games. Take that how you will.
 
2013-03-08 05:59:55 PM
The belief that even a noticeable portion of pirates would ever buy th e game if piracy was not an answer is a ludicrous cancer.
 
2013-03-08 06:00:57 PM

HeartBurnKid: As you acknowledge this, then surely you must realize that making it even harder to pay and use your paid-for product, while not impeding those who would get it without paying at all, is not a productive approach?


Oh of course - but my original and consistent argument has nothing to do with EA and its ridiculously stupid actions.  Of course the company is making it such that the only way the games are functional is through unlawful means.  But that is a different question.

Let me say it this way, perhaps.  Assume Ford produces a car that is terribly terribly flawed.  It is possible to make the cars run, but to do so would require some unlawful act.  You as a consumer have, again, three choices.  You can buy the shiatbox and use it as a paper weight.  You can say "screw you Ford," and walk away. Or you can do the illegal act.  Note: you have no right to a ford.  None.  Ford has all the rights in the world to make a terrible product, and you have all the rights in the world to not buy it.  But saying "hey they mad a stupid car so i had to do this illegal thing to make it work!  It's Ford's fault" is a fallacy.

The correct answer is to watch ford go down in flames because of their stupid decision and not drive that car.
 
2013-03-08 06:01:32 PM

Dr. Goldshnoz: Don't move the goal posts now.


How so?
 
2013-03-08 06:03:00 PM
And thisis why I think the Ouya will have a solid chance this year. If developers make a game like Sim City, offer a large chunk of it free-to-play, and don't fill it with DRM crap, they'll be way ahead of EA.

Just think Sim City players: You could have spent that $60 toward a new $99 console with games that won't f♥ck with you like EA does. NOW do you understand why supporting the Ouya and open development of games is a good idea?
 
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