CD Projekt RED Ceasing Witcher 2 Piracy Witch Hunt

CD Projekt announces it is now the official distributor for Codemasters in Poland. On a slightly related note, Rock, Paper, Shotgun has a statement from CD Projekt RED saying they are ceasing the recently revealed process of directly contacting file-sharers they suspect of pirating The Witcher 2, in spite of their confidence in the infallibility of such accusations. While continuing to decry piracy, this open letter from CD Projekt RED co-founder Marcin Iwinski says they have heard gamer's concerns, and that these direct contacts will cease immediately:
An Open Letter to the Gaming Community from CD Projekt RED

In early December, an article was published about a law firm acting on behalf of CD Projekt RED, contacting individuals who had downloaded The Witcher 2 illegally and seeking financial compensation for copyright infringement. The news about our decision to combat piracy directly, instead of with DRM, spread quickly and with it came a number of concerns from the community. Repeatedly, gamers just like you have said that our methods might wrongly accuse people who have never violated our copyright and expressed serious concern about our actions.

Being part of a community is a give-and-take process. We only succeed because you have faith in us, and we have worked hard over the years to build up that trust. We were sorry to see that many gamers felt that our actions didn’t respect the faith that they have put into CD Projekt RED. Our fans always have been and remain our greatest concern, and we pride ourselves on the fact that you all know that we listen to you and take your opinions to heart. While we are confident that no one who legally owns one of our games has been required to compensate us for copyright infringement, we value our fans, our supporters, and our community too highly to take the chance that we might ever falsely accuse even one individual.

So we’ve decided that we will immediately cease identifying and contacting pirates.

Let’s make this clear: we don’t support piracy. It hurts us, the developers. It hurts the industry as a whole. Though we are staunch opponents of DRM because we don’t believe it has any effect on reducing piracy, we still do not condone copying games illegally. We’re doing our part to keep our relationship with you, our gaming audience, a positive one. We’ve heard your concerns, listened to your voices, and we’re responding to them. But you need to help us and do your part: don’t be indifferent to piracy. If you see a friend playing an illegal copy of a game–any game–tell your friend that they’re undermining the possible success of the developer who created the very game that they are enjoying. Unless you support the developers who make the games you play, unless you pay for those games, we won’t be able to produce new excellent titles for you.

Keep on playing,

Marcin Iwinski
co-founder
CD Projekt RED
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19.
 
Re: CD Projekt RED Ceasing Witcher 2 Piracy Witch Hunt
Jan 12, 2012, 16:47
Prez
 
19.
Re: CD Projekt RED Ceasing Witcher 2 Piracy Witch Hunt Jan 12, 2012, 16:47
Jan 12, 2012, 16:47
 Prez
 
Krovven wrote on Jan 12, 2012,:
They need to be very thorough when making their accusations, but the masses should bud the fuck out when it comes to CD Projekt defending their property* that doesn't effect legit customers.

Edit: * spelling

Completely disagree. I want CD Projekt to be paid every penny they have coming to them, but just as importantly I don't want them suing their fanbase into oblivion and creating an RIAA/MPAA- sized backlash that turns a huge segment of the market against them. That's a loss for CD Projekt, and a loss for customers like you and me who love them because it hurts their future viability and ability to make games.

Almost as big a concern to me as them suing someone wrongly is the concern that I have that they will sue someone who made the right decision by paying for it after they pirated it. Whether or not you agree with practice, it is commonplace among gamers for any number of reasons (some more valid the others) and CD Projekt's former behavior is wholly counterproductive and works in direct contravention of far better and proven methods of combatting piracy. There's such a fine line between pirate and customer that such a drastic coarse of action as suing people expressing interest in your game (even if that interest starts out as "stealing) is akin to using a shotgun to swat flies. Other industries have tried the "stick" to terrible results. It doesn't work. Far better to use the carrot.

This comment was edited on Jan 12, 2012, 16:52.
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