Author Topic: EA Gets Sued Over Spore  (Read 7770 times)

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Offline blackhole

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EA Gets Sued Over Spore
Spore creators sued over anti-piracy software
September 26, 2008 - 8:48AM
Source: ABC


The freshly-launched Spore computer game that lets people play God has been hit with a lawsuit accusing its creators of slipping devilish anti-piracy software onto players' machines.

The lawsuit filed this week in a federal court in Northern California contends that players were not warned about tenacious digital rights management (DRM) software that stays in computers even if game programs are removed.

Spore maker Electronic Arts told buyers that there are anti-piracy safeguards but did not advise people the SecuROM program it used "is essentially a virus that installs itself without warning," the lawsuit alleges.

The DRM software attaches itself to the "command and control centres" of computers and tracks activities, blocks certain operations and even disrupts hardware, according to the suit filed on Monday (local time).

A US woman was named as the plaintiff in the lawsuit, which is seeking class action status to represent all Spore buyers.

The filing demands a jury trial and wants Electronic Arts forced to pay unspecified damages as well as turn over money it has made from Spore, which went on sale in Europe, Asia, Australia and the United States this month.

Electronic Arts declined an AFP request for comment, saying it does not discuss pending litigation.

DRM software is commonly used to thwart piracy of video games, as well as digitised music and films.
« Last Edit: September 26, 2008, 02:06:24 am by blackhole »

 
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Offline FUBAR-BDHR

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I read this earlier today (Well yesterday).  Hope they get one heck of a slap in the wallet. 
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Offline Stormkeeper

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Hmmm. Half my games are dl'd. Should I be worried?
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Offline Al Tarket

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Re: EA Gets Sued Over Spore
you couldn't know and besides it was not your fault that a virus essentially attached itself in your machine, regardless if you think nothing is wrong.
however give it enough time, as with all viruses, it learns and adapts and they were designed that way, eventually you will get problems later on.

as for stormkeeper, pirated software the stuff i download if i have no where else to turn if i can not find it anywhere, the people who create the cracks, also remove files to end any conflict, however some of them are stupid enough to upload another one into the game the moment you play it. the risks are always their and you know the dangers even so, its not a question of being worried more a question of when will the next computer format come and begin again.

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Offline CP5670

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Re: EA Gets Sued Over Spore
I can't see this going anywhere, considering that Securom in its current form has been around for almost three years now and is used by several companies other than EA, but it's good that someone is at least trying to do something about it.

See my post here for more information on Securom and what it does.

 

Offline MP-Ryan

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Re: EA Gets Sued Over Spore
I think you people that are worried missed the point.

The lawsuit is against EA because it is using SecuROM.  Which is what the woman is alleging acts as a virus.  (In point of fact, it acts more like a rootkit, but that's nitpicking).  Illegally downloaded and cracked software will have its SecuROM functionality removed.  For that matter, most editions of SecuROM don't have reporting facilities anyway so it doesn't matter much (though the edition in use with Spore seems to report in order to detect the number of activations).

SecuROM is far less evil than Starforce - they readily acknowledge there are sometimes compatibility issues with their software and will issue custom-built patches to remove their protection from software.  I had an issue with Homeworld 2 and they actually provided me with a patch that eliminated the copy-protection for me to get it working.

Quote
however give it enough time, as with all viruses, it learns and adapts and they were designed that way, eventually you will get problems later on.

Uh, no.  No computer virus works that way.  They have a specific function they perform.  That's it.  Computer viruses do not have a flexible-heuristic or AI component to them.  And SecuROM's software isn't actually a virus, it just bears some similarities to the way they function.
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Offline CP5670

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Re: EA Gets Sued Over Spore
Quote
SecuROM is far less evil than Starforce

This is highly debatable. Starforce is actually much easier to remove from a system than Securom. Malware is a more accurate term than virus for any of these things.

Also, Homeworld 2 is not relevant here. The form of Securom under discussion is version 7 and onward, first seen in some 2005 games, which was quite different from the previous versions.

 
Re: EA Gets Sued Over Spore
so, uhm is it safe to get it still?
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Offline Al Tarket

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Re: EA Gets Sued Over Spore
if it is a rootkit that means it will just gather what it's been designed to do and keep going.

essentially it's like trying to pee in a public men's toilet(your computer) facility with a man 3 foot taller then you(the rootkit) are look down at you and finding out what your features and attitude is like so he can report back to his buddies to prepare for the next contact. if you want it like this then i won't stop you, but thats what it is like being said.

if it is safe though? as with all root kits,vruises, malware, bots if it sticks to it's designed goals assuming their has been no new orders to take on such as gathering your pc's passwords from certain sites and transmitting them to dubious sites, it shouldn't be much of a problem, but it would be wise to keep an eye on it if so.
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Offline BloodEagle

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Re: EA Gets Sued Over Spore
if it is a rootkit that means it will just gather what it's been designed to do and keep going.

essentially it's like trying to pee in a public men's toilet(your computer) facility with a man 3 foot taller then you(the rootkit) are look down at you and finding out what your features and attitude is like so he can report back to his buddies to prepare for the next contact. if you want it like this then i won't stop you, but thats what it is like being said.

if it is safe though? as with all root kits,vruises, malware, bots if it sticks to it's designed goals assuming their has been no new orders to take on such as gathering your pc's passwords from certain sites and transmitting them to dubious sites, it shouldn't be much of a problem, but it would be wise to keep an eye on it if so.


Say what?  :confused:

 

Offline Al Tarket

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Re: EA Gets Sued Over Spore
ok your problem, don;'t say i didn't tell you so when it comes and hits you in the face, i would laugh at you for not understanding what i said. :rolleyes:
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Offline Mars

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Re: EA Gets Sued Over Spore
so, uhm is it safe to get it still?

Apparently if you pirate it.

 

Offline BloodEagle

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Re: EA Gets Sued Over Spore
ok your problem, don;'t say i didn't tell you so when it comes and hits you in the face, i would laugh at you for not understanding what i said. :rolleyes:

 :wtf:

When I said "Say what," I was referring to the fact that I couldn't discern your point from your post.

Seriously, that's one Hell of a language barrier.

 
Re: EA Gets Sued Over Spore
i'm ot gonna pirate it.

but i've waited 2 years for this, and i want it SO bad!
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Offline Agent_Koopa

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Re: EA Gets Sued Over Spore
What's this? A class-action suit? I'd better buy a copy of Spore right now!
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Re: EA Gets Sued Over Spore
seriously, has this been confirmed?

and does anyone have any ideas when a *LEGAL* copy will be safe?
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Offline Hellstryker

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Re: EA Gets Sued Over Spore
Never, most likely.

 

Offline MP-Ryan

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Re: EA Gets Sued Over Spore
Quote
SecuROM is far less evil than Starforce

This is highly debatable. Starforce is actually much easier to remove from a system than Securom.

SecuROM doesn't cause hardware failure.  Starforce wins for evil.

Quote
Also, Homeworld 2 is not relevant here. The form of Securom under discussion is version 7 and onward, first seen in some 2005 games, which was quite different from the previous versions.

Wasn't saying that made SecuROM any less bad, just that the company does actually acknowledge and support problems with its software.  Which is better than not.  No SecuROM at all is still better than that.
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Offline CP5670

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Re: EA Gets Sued Over Spore
Quote
SecuROM doesn't cause hardware failure.  Starforce wins for evil.

That only occurred in some rare cases if it failed its check hundreds of times. I'm not sure whether it's any worse than things like the context menu crash with Mass Effect that I brought up in the other thread, which came suddenly and without warning. I know a few people on another forum who ended up formatting due to that before the fix was released (by the publisher, not Sony).

It can be debated which one is more nasty, but the bottom line is you do not want either one on your system.

Quote
Wasn't saying that made SecuROM any less bad, just that the company does actually acknowledge and support problems with its software.  Which is better than not.  No SecuROM at all is still better than that.

I will admit that I find your story that Sony actually provided a cracked version to you directly quite hard to believe. :p Even if they wanted to do that, it would probably violate contracts with the publisher. A more likely scenario is that an official patch that fixed the problem was already available and they simply sent you that.

Most other people who have contacted with them directly say that they don't provide any assistance with specific games (which makes sense since their clients are the publishers, not the end users).
« Last Edit: September 26, 2008, 11:11:59 pm by CP5670 »