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cliffski

shutting down warez sites

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Now and then i send of an email to an ISP if i notice his network is hosting a warez site with my games on. Its often quite difficult to get anywhere, very time consuming etc. Is there any organisation/tool/website around that makes this kind of thing easier? I hate to think that some lame thief can get hold of cracks to my games that easily, yet most ISPs (esp non english ones) dont seem to give a damn. What are other developers expereince of sorting this out? And please dont reply just saying its all futile, because you could say the same about any type of crime. Thanks http://www.positech.co.uk

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I know what you mean. I was pissed when I found cracks to one of my apps on 3 sites before I even made my first sale. I tried contacting the ISP''s to no avail. As expected, they were foreign domains. A lot of this stuff is hosted in asian domains, and it seems people in some of those areas (hong kong, korea, tiawan, etc) dont seem to look at piracy the same way we do. I''ve read studies clamining that in these places, over 90% of software was pirated (I think it was hong kong where the rate was 99%). When 99% of people think its alright to pirate software, you probably dont have a chance in hell of convincing someone to take down a site for pirating software. When it gets into cracks and serial numbers, I think it gets a little murkier, bacause I''m not 100% sure of the consequences of this. Is it illegal to distribute cracks and serial numbers? You and I know what the intent is, but what law (if any) does this fall under? When you start dealing with international laws, it gets even trickier.

Sorry to say it, but at this point, from my experiences I have to say it is futile when it comes to other countries. At least until someone shows me a method that proves me wrong.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
The interactive digital software association trolls around closing abadondonware and warez sites that post their member''s games. I have no idea how much it costs to join, though.

If a site with your game also has one of theirs, they have a piracy reporting area on their anti-piracy page.

http://www.idsa.com

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Most people dont think Warez is Illigal... Thats a problem.

All my friends thinks its okay to copy Programs/Movies, without paying for it, but they think its not okay to steal even though stealing == Warez...

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I know what you mean, Snash.
The other day I was talking to my friend, who is supposed to be one the "knowledgeable" computer users, about the DMCA.
He was like, "I don't care about no frickin' DMCA."
When I explained what the law was about, he was like, "Well I don't use CDs anyway. I have over 1000 MP3s."
Now, I don't like the DMCA since it is so overreaching that it makes criminals out of what used to be people celebrating a general freedom of use, so I was trying to show him how bad this law was.
This is the guy who always offers to burn you a copy of Max Payne when you mention the game. He of course is making a copy of a copy cause why would he buy anything? I never like arguing with him because he doesn't have the same principles that most of my colleagues have.

Now, keep in mind, people who don't make programs don't understand that just because you CAN make copies it doesn't make it legal or right.
My mother recently told me she wanted Office installed on her computer, and I told her that we don't have it. She right away assumed I could get a copy from a friend. I explained to her that it was illegal to do so, and she was like, "So?"

How many people make copies of music for others on tape? Why not do the same for CDs? And why not do the same for CD-ROMS?
It all logically follows for these people, and telling them that half to all of the games that they own are illegal is like telling someone to stop speeding. It is a habit, and it isn't going to stop soon.

I myself didn't realize how bad piracy was until I started programming. I didn't want people to steal my software (not that I have anything worth stealing yet). I had copies of some games from friends, copies of utility software, applications, etc.
I looked through and tried to find those games that I really liked and actually bought them. I like supporting the people who make good games.

The non-programming world has gotten used to being able to download music for free and burn it to CD. With bandwidth getting cheaper and better, games won't be too far behind from being very popular.

Perhaps a giant advertising campaign is needed. Major developers need to let the world know that piracy is wrong. How many people know that is the name for what they do, and how many people know it is wrong in the first place? The general public's awareness level needs to change.

Now I don't have much of a problem with legitimate use of cracks. I have Total Annihilation and a laptop without a CDROM drive. One visit to a warez site, and I was able to play the game. I own a legal copy it and now I can play it on my laptop.
So it is a little more complicated than that.
-------------------------
(Gorgeous graphics)+(beautiful sound effects)+(symphonic music)+(no gameplay) != Good game

[edited by - GBGames on March 19, 2002 4:09:50 PM]

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quote:
Original post by GBGames
Now I don''t have much of a problem with legitimate use of cracks. I have Total Annihilation and a laptop without a CDROM drive. One visit to a warez site, and I was able to play the game. I own a legal copy it and now I can play it on my laptop.
So it is a little more complicated than that.


Indeed. By some interpretations of the DMCA that would be a violation.

Because the technology allows for perfect copies to be made, content producers seek perfect control. Problem is, there''s no such thing as absolute control - only approximations.

I don''t think that Asians have a much different view of piracy, although it might seem that way because their economies are less advanced. Do you think a govt official in Thailand (for example) cares to use what limited resources he has to enforce the copyrights of some US company? Not likely (especially when some of those companies take in more money than his country does).

On the contrary, that official probably thinks that having a readily available supply of software from the more advanced countries is a boon to his. More software means more computer literacy means a better future for the country. At the same time, they''re not likely to want to cut their country off from the rest of the world, so the warez sites remain open and people in the advanced countries can get at them too.

It''s difficult to see that a game will be treated any less differently than a suite of business apps or music or movies in those countries. As the economies in those undeveloped countries advances, pirating and such will likely decrease, as the govt will seek to exert control. Just like what has been happenin in the US for the last couple of years. Once the cyber frontier has been colonized, the central authority seeks to assert control (to maintain the dominant position of the big players). It''s an old pattern, now being applied to cyberspace.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
It''s my understanding that an ISP can''t be held responsible for what it''s members do (especially if it isn''t hosted on there servers). So if the people who run the warez sites are hosted by a seperate company the only thing their ISP can do is deny them internet access (a very temporary solution). You''d probably be better off finding out who hosted the website in question and complain to them. Its either that or copy protection.

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I''d be kinda flattered if someone took the time to crack a game I made

though probably not if I was trying to live off the sales.

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This is a little off topic..
One of the reasons warez is popular is because its so easy to do,(as demonstrated by GBGames) - i''m sure that if people could do other illegal things with hardly a chance of been caught or foiled they would - imagine a supermarket where there is no security features and no one watching if you walk out the door with a basket-full of goods
No, Im not supporting warez, I am saying its too easy and developers need to think about security, and make it as hard as possible for their software to be copied - yes some have done this (or tried) but its very rare.

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