They don't need permission to create a derivative work.They do in order for it to be granted copyright protection. Otherwise the creators of the derivative work have no legal right to distribute it or to restrict its distribution. They own no copyright to the derivative work whatsoever because it is not eligible for copyright protection. You should have read my reply post in its entirety not just the first part.
They only need permission to distribute it.But, the creators of the crack did distribute it, and that is what makes it a violation of standard copyright law. The DMCA was violated during the crack's creation, but that is a tangential issue.
There's no part of copyright law that gives them automatic copyright ownership over a derivative work that they did not create themselves.You are missing the forest for the trees. The derivative work here is not eligible for copyright protection under U.S. law as a derivative work because it was created without authorization of the copyright holder of the underlying/original work, i.e. Ubisoft. Therefore Ubisoft does not need permission of the derivative work's creator to distribute the derivative work because the derivative work has NO additional copyright protection aside from that afforded to the underlying work which Ubisoft already owns. The bottom line is that according to U.S. copyright law Ubisoft can legally distribute the crack even though it didn't create it because the crack contains no copyrighted work other than Ubisoft's own underlying work.
And how can you possibly know this?Because I know how to use Google as do the overwhelming majority of those who use the Internet.
The new breeds of DRM might be incredibly effective against casual piracy, which is one of the biggest issues.First, the notion of "casual piracy" is an anachronism today with the ubiquitous nature of the Internet. As evident by the widespread popularity of P2P websites and services like The Pirate Bay and various P2P search engines, the unauthorized distribution of copyrighted material including PC games has become relatively quick and easy. Anyone desiring to download a game for free can do so after a simple Google search. All piracy is casual now because the opportunity for it is so pervasive and it takes so little technical skill and effort to accomplish. The old barriers to entry are long gone.
I just doubt that the original authors are going to come forward and make that claim publicly since they had to violate the DMCA in order to create the work.The DMCA isn't really relevant here because the author(s) of the crack also violated standard U.S. copyright law because they didn't have permission of the game's copyright proprietor (Ubisoft) to create this derivative work in the first place. DMCA or not, the crack is still a violation of copyright law.
So, yes, what Ubi did was also "piracy" in this case.No, it isn't. Ubisoft can't infringe the copyright of an unauthorized derivative work because no copyright for that derivative work actually exists beyond that of the original work. Yes, legally speaking Ubisoft doesn't own the copyright to that derivative work, but that is because NO ONE DOES since it has no copyright. Therefore, Ubisoft is free to distribute that work since it owns the copyright to the original work and since there is no copyright restriction on the derivative part of the work. An unauthorized derivative work has no copyright protection beyond that of the original work.
Ubisoft should pay the cracking group for the value added service they have provided.It would be more cost effective for Ubisoft to simply not pay to use DRM/copy-protection in the first place than to pay for the DRM and then pay someone later to remove it. It would save both development time and money and also save money in technical support costs. Using DRM/copy-protection is NOT saving money by preventing unauthorized use because anyone who wants a free unauthorized copy of a game without DRM/copy-protection can already easily obtain one through the Internet.
I don't understand why Ubisoft would need a crack. They should already have an unprotected version of the game exe.Read the second half of my post below (#17).
Rather than release a clean build despite the bad image that's going to give them?What's the bad image? Ubisoft simply distributed a cracked executable to which they own the rights. Sure it demonstrates the hypocrisy of DRM/copy-protection, but if anything it shows the company was willing to remove the DRM for customers who were having problems. Many if not most publishers won't do that regardless of the fact that some customers can't play the game they bought due to its DRM.
I thought the reason was that the programmers responsible wouldn't be working for Ubi anymore.Ubisoft owns the source code to the game and surely has a copy of it regardless of the current status of the game's programmers. Someone at Ubisoft could compile a build without the DRM. As a practical matter it would be fairly easy to do. As a business matter it isn't easy at all. Getting corporate management to approve releasing a build of the game without DRM isn't going to happen as it is these same dimwits who insist on putting DRM in the game in the first place. So, the technical support reps here chose the path of least resistance which was simply to distribute an already available crack. The only problem with their decision to freelance is that they didn't have the good or technical sense to make sure the crack wasn't still watermarked when they distributed it.
DRM that apparently Ubi Soft can't even remove without help from the pirates?Sure Ubisoft could have released a build without the DRM since it has the source code to the game. However, apparently in this case it was easier for Ubisoft's technical support reps to pass out the widely awailable cracked executable to customers who were having problems with the game due to the DRM/copy-protection than to get Ubisoft management to authorize and obtain a new build of the game without DRM from the development team.
a version of the game cracked by a piracy group may have been, well, pirated and distributedActually from a legal standpoint what Ubisoft did here was not piracy (if piracy is defined as copyright infringement). Ubisoft already owns the copyright to the game, so this "cracked" executable from the game that Ubisoft distributed is simply an unauthorized derivative work, and Ubisoft has the right to distribute it.
Although I really do appreciate attempting to be corrected about something that I actually did.I rightfully corrected you because you were wrong. You wrote in your original post "the second generation of 360 games" when clearly it WASN'T the second generation of XBOX360 games at E3 2005 when the XBOX360 had not even been released yet. E3 2006 or more accurately E3 2007 was the first show which showed the second generation of XBOX360 titles NOT E3 2005 which barely showed the first generation of XBOX360 titles. Yes, you may have attended E3 in 2005, but your description of the event was wrong.
the 360 was out on display, playable, in the MS booth and the EA booth.Actually the 360's weren't in the booths. There were running videos of XBOX360 games in booths and there were some console cases under glass, but working consoles weren't there. Microsoft had very tight restrictions on their display at the show. To actually see and play an XBOX360, you had to get a private demo. I know because I got those demos.
Point is, there are still plenty of PC games being shown and promotedNo, the point is there aren't. The games which are being promoted are console games and even the cross-platform games which supposedly have PC versions are being demonstrated and promoted on consoles instead. The PC ports can end up being very different games since they frequently have delayed releases and they sometimes even end up being bastardized versions of the game since features found in the console versions get cut, e.g. EA and Disney games.
and yes we all know that this E3 inparticular is heavily focused on consoles. But it's not a "console show".LOL! First, you are arguing semantics. Being heavily focused on consoles does make E3 a console show. One or two PC exclusive games shown at the show doesn't change that. PC games are a distant afterthought and even the cross-platform titles are being demonstrated on consoles. Second, it's not just this particular E3 which is console focused. Since 2006, E3 has been very console centric especially with the release of the XBOX360, PS3, and Wii. The last E3 I can remember that had a strong showing of PC exclusive or at least PC-centric games was E3 2005 with games like Crysis, Prey, F.E.A.R., Quake 4, Quake Wars, Tabula Rasa, Auto Assault, City of Villains, and Guild Wars. Sure some of those games turned out to be duds, but there was still plenty of hype around those PC games and others at that E3. This year there is nothing like that for PC game consumers.
I expect there will be major changes in the other direction for E3 next year, if E3 manages to even exist next year.I don't expect that trend to change because video game consumers are simply buying too many console games for publishers not to favor that market. As for E3 existing next year, I bet it won't because I expect the exodus of companies from the ESA to continue. The ESA dues are simply too high for the return on investment.
Too many restrictions has swept the legs out from under it. Bring back the large open forum, put monitored booth sound restrictions in place and limit the number of booth babes per display/company.Booth babes weren't the problem (because they do actually draw attention to the games) and sound restrictions were already in place years ago (though not enforced as diligently as they could have been). E3 simply needs to go back to a larger venue and open up more access to the show. Having a small, closed show is simply counter to the main goal of a trade show which is to draw widespread and mainstream attention to the products.
The reason for fewer PC exclusives being shown comes with my other point about smaller developers no longer being able to attend the event.The fact that only the smaller developers are doing PC exclusive games proves my point that it's not E3's restrictions that have caused it to become basically a console show. It's the large developers and publishers. Back when E3 was affordable for the smaller developers and publishers, they were never the main focus of the show. Yes, it was a good place for them to get some exposure, but their games weren't the primary focus. So, even if they were at E3 today, they would still be drowned out by the din of the console game announcements.
If you don't have a big publisher, you don't get in....and even then you may only get a mention. Again, due to so many restrictions.Again, it not the E3 show restrictions that cause this. It's the publishers. They are prioritizing their demonstrations at the show based upon their development efforts, and like it or not, those are mainly focused on the consoles.
There are many great PC exclusive games coming (not just MMO's)Such as?
Do you think so many companies pulled out of E3 voluntarily because they liked the new restrictions?It wasn't the restrictions. It was the money. The price of entry to E3 is too high for the small companies and even some of the larger ones passed due to the costs.
http://play.tm/wire/click/2011026 ... List of games for PC shown at E3That list is grossly misleading as at least 90% of those titles are cross-platform titles, and the versions demonstrated at E3 are most likely the console versions. The PC is not the focus of those titles.
this is not even completeIt's more complete than it is accurate as Bioshock (released last year) is on that list. Obviously that refers to the upcoming PS3 version of the game not the PC version.
E3 isnt a console event, but logical choices based on the new restrictions leads to far fewer PC displays and presentations.That's bullshit because many of the announcements and displays of E3 including the major press conferences aren't technically part of the official event as they aren't held on the official E3 convention facilities. Therefore they aren't restricted by any of E3's rules. If Microsoft, Activision, or EA wanted to focus primarily on the PC at their events, they certainly could. The reason that these big presentations aren't focused on the PC has nothing to do with any E3 restrictions. It's based solely on the game companies' chosen focus based upon their game sales and perception of the market. That's why it's console centric. E3 is just mirroring the video game market.
my old 1.5 Mb/s connection probably doesn't even qualify as broadbandThat rate is still the downstream on the second tier (of a mere four) of AT&T's ADSL service. The first tier is only 768Kbits/sec. Worse still due to PPPoE and other overhead, that 1.5Mbits/sec translates into an actual download limit of only ~152Kbytes/sec.
I attended E3 05...the second generation of 360 gamesYou must mean E3 2006 as the XBOX360 was only officially revealed at E3 05 and the only place to actually see it running was in Microsoft's and a few other publishers' private demos like EA's. The XBOX360 didn't actually ship until late November 2005.
A few minor bug fixesA few?! LOL! You really have a knack for the understatement. I suggest you go back and actually read through the change logs for all of the TF updates. It's closer to a few dozen or hundred bugfixes than to just a few.
and a whole shitload of gameplay tweaks that could never have been decided on beforeSure those gameplay tweaks and decisions could have been determined beforehand IF Valve's developers were actually competent and/or properly managed. TF2 is based on at least ten year old gameplay. Its gameplay is far from radically new or innovative so most if not all of the tweaks made certainly could have been forseen or caught in testing before release.
Ah, silly me. 6 new weaponsMore like six minor variations of or replacements for the weapons already in the game.
a couple of great new mapsOne new map (which is actually a remake of an old TFC map) and two maps made by some users. Wow, that's just an awesome display of game content creation in nine months. It certainly lives up to your "tons of new content" billing.
an awesome new gameplay mode is nothing.It is basically nothing especially when you realize that it's actually only playable on ONE of the game's official maps.
yet I only paid $37 for Orange BoxYou still paid too much for too little. You just happen to be slightly less stupid than the idiots who paid $50 or more or $30 for TF2 alone.
Hundreds of hours of TF2, Episode Two, and Portal for $37? I don't know what a "real, full game tastes like"If you've spend hundreds of hours replaying the tired gameplay and paltry content in TF2, then yes, you certainly don't know what a real, full game is.
They release tons of content for TF2Valve hasn't released tons of content for TF2. Tons of bug fixes and gameplay changes for a game which was supposedly years in development and thoroughly playtested and tweaked before release, yes. Tons of meaningless, trivial tasks to "accomplish" in the game, yes. But, actual, bona fide game content such as new maps, character models, and gameplay modes? No. In the nine months since the game's release, Valve has released all of three new maps and two of those are just maps made by some users. Even after nine months of patches TF2 still has less actual content than any other major PC game from other developers I can think of and even less than some if not most team fortress mods for other games. If any other major game developer had released a game like TF2 that is essentially a simplified retread of a ten-year-old Quake mod with no single-player functionality, only three gameplay modes with one of them being tired old CTF, and a paltry seven maps (all of which aren't even playable in all three gameplay modes) and had the gall to sell it for $30, they'd be laughed right out of the market. The only reason Valve gets away with shit like that is because so many of you lackeys have eaten Valve's shit for so long that you don't know what a real, full game should taste like.
Are you an idiot?I don't need to ask you that question because you've already amply demonstrated that you are one.
Multiplayer demos tend to have far more replayability than single-player demos.Well the UT2004 demo is actually both single-player and multiplayer due to the game's included bots. It's not just an online or multiplayer experience, and it definitely hurt the full version's sales although the game still sold well.
If a player really enjoys a single player demo, there's a very good chance he'll buy the full version so he can access more areas, meet more characters, use more weapons and vehicles and just take in more of the story.I agree, and you can certainly see that in demos from developers like Monolith. However in cases where creating a demo version of a game is cost or time prohibitive, a time-limited trial version of the full game or better yet a refund policy on the full game would certainly be a doable substitute for the developer/publisher and a desirable one for the consumer.
yeah, like THAT won't be cracked in less than a day......The full version of the game will be cracked in less than a day as well. That's still no valid reason not to have a time-limited demo. Trymedia's Trygames.com is full of full version games with time-limited trial periods. I don't like the restrictive DRM system built into these games as far as purchasing goes, but these releases are still a good way to try out a game for free before buying a copy of it on physical media from a retailer.
If people like your demo enough to play it for 12 hours, doesn't that make them more likely to buy the full game..?Not necessarily. I personally love a good full-featured demo, but as a business matter it can have a real averse effect on sales especially initial sales. For example the UT2004 demo had such a great selection of maps (Facing Worlds, Torlan, Rankin, etc.) and gameplay modes that a lot of people didn't bother buying the full game (at least until months or years later when it had dropped substantially in price) because the demo gave them all they were really looking for. The Halo PC demo is another one which is still quite popular online almost five years after the full game's release.
Didn't these guys retain anything from their time making games that were addictive?Yes, their hubris.