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Old 05-03-2006, 08:15 PM   #21
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(Please address the issue instead of making personal attacks.)

Why would this thread not belong in Legal Issues? If you don't think KaVir is an appropriate moderator for the forum, you should take it up with Synozeer, since it's his decision. But it's odd to claim that a discussion of copyright infringement doesn't belong in Legal Issues.
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Old 05-03-2006, 08:18 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by (Threshold @ May 03 2006,20:29)
What a crock. A post that you wrote on May 03 2006,11:56 in the real DIKU License thread got moderated slightly, and then lo' and behold, you start a new thread (about the same issue) a few hours later (May 03 2006,14:49) in a forum moderated by KaVir.
OK, Negative Nancy. Take a deep breath and let's take this from the top before you have an aneurysm: if he posts it over there and it gets moderated, then the most logical thing to do is post it where it is least likely to be moderated.

The issue is similar enough without being completely identical; it can support its own thread.

My professional recommendation for you is a maxi with wings, since you appear to be having a permanent heavy flow day.
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Old 05-03-2006, 09:24 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by (Soleil @ May 03 2006,18:07)
Again I ask, why should we, a moderatly successful game company, bow down to the demands of a few people on these forums?  Just to please you?  For the good of the 'community'? Demand away my friend.  Have fun.  Nothing is going to change.  
Ultimately, you should do what people are suggesting not because people are suggesting it, but because it's the right thing to do. It's the honest thing to do. The alternative is to be a liar and a thief.

Even if it doesn't matter to anyone else, to be that kind of low person takes a toll on them. Your children will understand it and learn from it despite anything you do. They'll either learn that stealing is okay if you think you can get away with it, or they'll learn that it's not okay, and their parents are not worthy of respect.

If you're going to lower yourself, at least do it for a good reason. Sell out to make a million. Steal something worth having. Don't sell your integrity for the price of not having to say that some people who helped get your MUD rolling helped get it rolling. Think of every movie, play, or TV show in the history of the world where someone sells their soul to the devil for something dumb or worthless. Essentially, you are making a worse deal than all of them, for basically no reason.

It's not such a big thing to give people the credit they deserve.
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Old 05-03-2006, 09:41 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (Sombalance @ May 04 2006,09:18)
Quote:
Originally Posted by
What is there to document? DELETE, open notepad, start typing and you're not a derivative.
That by itself does not create a clean room environment. If someone has the old set of source up in one window and a blank text editor open in the other and simply reads the original source and re-types it into the editor window with new formatting, structure and variables, but keeps the same algorithms aren't they still a derivative? I don't think simply saying a developer started with an empty file would be very convincing. What would be convincing?

Sombalance
That would be where the DELETE part comes in.
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Old 05-03-2006, 09:53 PM   #25
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This may be a little convoluted, but here goes.

http://www.techweb.com/news/story/TWB19980601S0008

Acuity used to be iChat. I don't know, but I think the change of name may be related to an Apple gadget that now bears the same name.

http://www.skotos.net/about/pr/Feb05_1999.html

Some more background concerning iChat. Note the use DGD was put to.

http://phantasmal.sourceforge.net/DG...ercialUse.html

Points I find of interest:

"I have come to see the response to the $100 a month license as
symptomatic for the text MUD "industry". Almost everyone
who contacted me severely underestimated the difficulty of creating
your own MUD, didn't know how to run a business, and was unwilling to
invest $1200 for the first year to get their MUD running.

Then I got involved with ichat. They were in the $100,000+ per year
licensing league. Using DGD and 2 LPC programmers, they created ROOMS
and in 6 months they had 80% of the chat market."

and,

"You'll discover that when it comes to charging for MUDs, there's not
really a long end of the stick. Skotos, last I checked, was just about
breaking even in the business. It's not like they're getting rich by
screwing over small developers -- there's just not currently a lot of
money in the business, so the key seems to be minimal development cost
(i.e. MUDs that suck, few new features, using a standard codebase
illegally, getting people to donate building/development time) so that
you don't have any expenses. Skotos is *really* not doing it that way,
which is one reason I'm so impressed with them."

The point? Professionals do not skirt licensing issues. Professionls recognize and disdain those who do.

There is a lot of money to be made out there in communication and entertainment, not a little of it I imagine from advertising. No one is going to advertise with, sign contracts with, or get into any close association with people who violate licensing and the law. It is simply not accepted in the professional environment. Advertising associated with a massive MUD would likely be game related. How many game developers want to do business with someone who plays fast and loose with copyright?

Heck, what customer wants to pay money to someone who plays fast and loose with ethics in general?

I don't want to hyper-inflate this argument, but what I am trying to say is that it is in everyone's best interest to make things not just okay, but as they say in ethics classes I have had to take, to avoid if at all possible even the appearance of impropriaty.

Developing trust in your chosen field among those in that market is just good business.
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Old 05-03-2006, 10:06 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (Anitra @ May 03 2006,17:38)
Shane: May 03 2006,17.08
Quote:
Originally Posted by
It's funny to me that Matt led an attempt to get you folks to clean up and now is seen as some sort of defender of yours.  
I find that 'funny' too.
The way I remember things, Matt was asking people to send him money, so he could consult some lawyer with the intent of sueing Medievia. When there was no rush from the crowd to cough up any cash, (somebody even stated that they didn't trust him with it), he suddenly changed his stance completely. Shortly after, he was actively urging all other DIKU based muds to go ahead and break the license too, on the basis that it was 'full of holes'.

What his motives were for both actions one can only speculate in.
Heya,

Speculate away.  He has claimed to have checked into this with a lawyer.  Beyond that, I don't know.  I have yet to see him actually encourage people to break the license though.  He fairly consistently argues against its utility, and he seems to focus a lot of the definiton of "profit", which may well be more appropos than a lot of people are giving it credit for.

He wouldn't be the only person to simply be tired of this coming up all the time.  It probably couldn't have hurt business any to clean the market of muds with questionable business practices and catch a tidy windfall in lost users perhaps coming to play his company's games as well.  Hardball perhaps, but welcome to the big leagues.  Certainly not the same as violating a license.

Now that it seems no one is ever going to sue, maybe the new goal is to minimalize the ongoing drag that constant droning about this subject causes in the industry, such as it is.

Once again, I find the dark and unsubstantiated hints on this subject somewhat disturbing.  Let's hear what it is that people have in their craw, I say.  Has the man stolen from any of you?  Has he violated any laws, or do you know of any ethical grey areas he seems to play in?  Because if not, this sort of innuendo is pretty offputting to me, honestly.  
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Old 05-03-2006, 10:16 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (Shane @ May 03 2006,17<!--emo&[img
http://www.topmudsites.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/wow.gif[/img])]It's funny to me that Matt led an attempt to get you folks to clean up and now is seen as some sort of defender of yours.
Well, when I first heard about the accusations against Medievia, I believe I read that the main reason the DIKU authors weren't doing anything was money, so my plan was to raise the money to help them.

I quickly realized a number of things though:
1. Almost nobody (nobody? I can't remember) in the community cared enough to spend any money on it, telling me something about how much the community actually cares vs. how much a few people say it cares.

2. The DIKU authors really don't give a damn and they aren't suffering any harm.

3. The entire issue is much more complicated than the Medievia attackers would believe, and none of them appeared to have ever actually gotten an opinion from a credible IP expert on the issue. I went ahead and got one, albeit it a quick opinion rather than a full brief (which would be thousands of dollars, and isn't worth it to me to satisfy my curiosity.) I've also shown the license to our accountant (who placed in the top 10 people on the CPA exam, and has a law degree as well) and got similar feedback.

I'm not defending Medievia. I'm defending the legal process, in which someone's guilt is decided in a courtroom, not in an internet forum. Whether Medievia is guilty of license violations or not is of no personal import to me, but since some people are going to argue for conviction in the court of public opinion, I'm going to argue for letting a legal issue be resolved in the manner in which legal issues get resolved. It's a principle thing, but some members here are unwilling to ascribe any motive to defending Medievia but "unethicalness" or whatever. If you don't sing the anthem and salute the flag, you're a traitor, as it were. (Some of the same people also dislike that we advertise ourselves as free-to-play, but that's so off-topic that it probably shouldn't be discussesd here.)

--matt
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Old 05-03-2006, 10:30 PM   #28
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As far as the criminal portion of the law, I think anyone is free to report that.

It does seem hard to fathom that no one has ever done a thing about it with all the energy spent on the subject.
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Old 05-03-2006, 10:34 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (Shane @ May 03 2006,23:30)
As far as the criminal portion of the law, I think anyone is free to report that.

It does seem hard to fathom that no one has ever done a thing about it with all the energy spent on the subject.
Well, anyone is free to report it, but an ISP could be sued for cutting off service in breach of contract in that case. It's also incredibly irresponsible. Further, if you, as an ISP, decide that you're going to substantially patrol for IP violations, you may lose common carrier status (There.com is dealing with this, for instance) and then actually be liable for the content sitting on your network. That is -not- what an ISP wants.

--matt
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Old 05-03-2006, 10:40 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by
(Some of the same people also dislike that we advertise ourselves as free-to-play, but that's so off-topic that it probably shouldn't be discussesd here.)

The people who tend to defend Medievia are also some of the same people who sell in-game-perks but advertise themselves as free-to-play, but you are right; that's so off-topic that it probably shouldn't be discussed here.
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Old 05-03-2006, 10:41 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by (Shane @ May 03 2006,23:30)
It does seem hard to fathom that no one has ever done a thing about it with all the energy spent on the subject.
Hey, come on now. People have started all sorts of accusatory threads on the matter, ensuring that as many people as possible hear about Medievia. Honestly, I find Medievia's marketing to be quite inept (no offence Soleil) and I end up strongly suspecting that the reason they are one of the biggest text MUDs now is probably largely because of all the attention the forum threads have given Medievia over the years. It is probably -the- most discussed MUD on the MUD forums, and while the MUD forums on do not get much traffic (most of the MUD community doesn't use them), all that exposure, year-in, year-out, has likely been pretty good for them.

--matt
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Old 05-03-2006, 10:44 PM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by
Let's hear what it is that people have in their craw, I say. Has the man stolen from any of you? Has he violated any laws, or do you know of any ethical grey areas he seems to play in? Because if not, this sort of innuendo is pretty offputting to me, honestly.
That would be off-topic. There have been entire threads discussing a variety of people's problems with Matt as a representative of the community and as a businessman - you can find them if you look back. I came to this forum in January and have already seen plenty of such threads since then. Beyond that - they exist in other MUD Forums too. I won't speak about them again here to be off-topic, but with a little research you can decide for yourself.
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Old 05-03-2006, 10:58 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (Shane @ May 03 2006,22:53)
The point?  Professionals do not skirt licensing issues.  Professionls recognize and disdain those who do.  

There is a lot of money to be made out there in communication and entertainment, not a little of it I imagine from advertising.  No one is going to advertise with, sign contracts with, or get into any close association with people who violate licensing and the law.  It is simply not accepted in the professional environment.  Advertising associated with a massive MUD would likely be game related.  How many game developers want to do business with someone who plays fast and loose with copyright?
Completely agreed. I'd be fired from my day job if my employer had this kind of evidence that I committed plagiarism, long before it went to court.
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Old 05-03-2006, 11:15 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by (Shane @ May 03 2006,22:53)
The point? Professionals do not skirt licensing issues. Professionls recognize and disdain those who do.

There is a lot of money to be made out there in communication and entertainment, not a little of it I imagine from advertising. No one is going to advertise with, sign contracts with, or get into any close association with people who violate licensing and the law. It is simply not accepted in the professional environment. Advertising associated with a massive MUD would likely be game related. How many game developers want to do business with someone who plays fast and loose with copyright?
I see what you're saying, but that's not also how I see it. There is lots of room for legitimate disagreement. I mean, you don't see people shunning Research in Motion (Blackberry) even though it was pretty blatantly operating in violation of NTP's patent and ended up having to settle after a judge's ruling made it fairly clear that it was likely to lose.

I know tons of professionals who use Blackberries and lots of large organizations that signed contracts with Research in Motion even after NTP filed its initial lawsuit.

Professionals tend, in my experience, to recognize that IP issues are complicated issues and wait for the courts to sort them out. Not always, of course, but that's just what I tend to see. Companies like Microsoft frequently have IP issues and are relatively frequently sued for them. That doesn't stop people doing business with MS or a thousand companies like them.

I'm not defending IP violations, but business isn't about condemning companies for one issue while ignoring the rest of the picture.

--matt
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Old 05-03-2006, 11:27 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by (the_logos @ May 03 2006,23:16)
(Some of the same people also dislike that we advertise ourselves as free-to-play, but that's so off-topic that it probably shouldn't be discussesd here.)
Now that, sir, is trolling.

Please do not feed the troll.
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Old 05-03-2006, 11:34 PM   #36
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Now that, sir, is trolling.
Had I not brought it up, someone (we both know whom) would have posted accusing me of misrepresenting why I'm not liked by that person, and accusing me of "unethical behavior" for not including it.

--matt
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Old 05-03-2006, 11:42 PM   #37
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Originally Posted by (the_logos @ May 04 2006,00:15)
Quote:
Originally Posted by (Shane @ May 03 2006,22:53)
The point?  Professionals do not skirt licensing issues.  Professionls recognize and disdain those who do.  

There is a lot of money to be made out there in communication and entertainment, not a little of it I imagine from advertising.  No one is going to advertise with, sign contracts with, or get into any close association with people who violate licensing and the law.  It is simply not accepted in the professional environment.  Advertising associated with a massive MUD would likely be game related.  How many game developers want to do business with someone who plays fast and loose with copyright?
I see what you're saying, but that's not also how I see it. There is lots of room for legitimate disagreement. I mean, you don't see people shunning Research in Motion (Blackberry) even though it was pretty blatantly operating in violation of NTP's patent and ended up having to settle after a judge's ruling made it fairly clear that it was likely to lose.

I know tons of professionals who use Blackberries and lots of large organizations that signed contracts with Research in Motion even after NTP filed its initial lawsuit.

Professionals tend, in my experience, to recognize that IP issues are complicated issues and wait for the courts to sort them out. Not always, of course, but that's just what I tend to see. Companies like Microsoft frequently have IP issues and are relatively frequently sued for them. That doesn't stop people doing business with MS or a thousand companies like them.

I'm not defending IP violations, but business isn't about condemning companies for one issue while ignoring the rest of the picture.

--matt
Possibly the problem with this industry is its cash poor nature.

So much money floating around in high tech, and everyone going in every direction at once, it doesn't surprise me, the deals with Blackberry and Microsoft and all. But, what I am getting at is that mud's as a whole appear to be getting this reputation.

You didn't use existing mud architecture or violate any copyrights, real or imagined, but instead went with Rapture. I am not familiar with its development track, but no one here yet at least has busted out and accused Rapture of copyright violations.

Why go to all that trouble? Wasn't at least part of it because you wanted to put a pure and professional face on your games?

It's one thing to jostle for position, but transparent coopting of other's work is harder to defend in the grand marketing scheme of things, I would think.
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Old 05-04-2006, 12:10 AM   #38
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But, what I am getting at is that mud's as a whole appear to be getting this reputation.
I can't say I agree with that assessment, but even if so, well, it's not that undeserved. There are a profusion of Star Wars, Dragonball, etc etc MUDs all operating without license from the IP holders.

Quote:
Originally Posted by

You didn't use existing mud architecture or violate any copyrights, real or imagined, but instead went with Rapture. I am not familiar with its development track, but no one here yet at least has busted out and accused Rapture of copyright violations.
That might be an accusation too absurd even for TMS.

Quote:
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Why go to all that trouble? Wasn't at least part of it because you wanted to put a pure and professional face on your games?
Nope. The need for Rapture was an evolution of needs. It's off-topic to go into it here. PM me if you want and I'd be happy to tell you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by
It's one thing to jostle for position, but transparent coopting of other's work is harder to defend in the grand marketing scheme of things, I would think.
Medievia's done pretty well given that other people (all of us having this discussion, for instance) spend a fair amount of time talking about them. I think they also recognize that their attackers are fundamentally toothless because they are third parties to the issue and that the DIKU authors don't care enough to spend any energy to do anything about it. To me, that's the key issue. If they don't care enough to do -anything-, then it's just not a big deal. They don't feel they're being harmed enough to take action, and no harm, no foul as far as I'm concerned.
--matt
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Old 05-04-2006, 12:23 AM   #39
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Originally Posted by (the_logos @ May 04 2006,01:10)
I think they (Medievia) also recognize that their attackers are fundamentally toothless because they are third parties to the issue and that the DIKU authors don't care enough to spend any energy to do anything about it. To me, that's the key issue. If they don't care enough to do -anything-, then it's just not a big deal. They don't feel they're being harmed enough to take action, and no harm, no foul as far as I'm concerned.
--matt
That's hard to argue with for me. I just am back to square one though. The cleanest solution to it all would be Medievia porting to a verifiably new codebase.

Well, the easiest cleanest solution would be for one or several of the Diku authors to do as Threshold suggests Lars did. I have heard it before, though in all fairness I am in proximity to Threshold enough that he may well be the person I actually heard it from both times, that Lars tried to get his team back together, and when there was no interest he made it public that he no longer was going to hold people to the LP license.

I have not tried to verify that at all, so... whatever that means. But I have heard it.
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Old 05-04-2006, 12:45 AM   #40
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Many "small claims" offenses never go to court because of the amount of money and hassle it would take for a non-corperation(such as the few remaining active DIKU Team members) to try to take on a company who had made money off of them enough to make the court situation sticky, at-the-least.

As I said earlier - I think it would be absolutely hilarious to see Hans/DIKU versus Vryce on Judge Judy; but really, that would be about their only option considering the annoyance of international considerations to be made.

Ultimately, them not wanting to spend the money to defend their license does not mean that they don't care about their work and their license. And even still, the many MUDs who do adhere to the DIKU's teams wishes do apparently care about the license.

While Medievia's plagiarism may not bother them, it does bother others. If their attitude is "tough luck, we plagariaze, but feel we've done a hell of a lot of work. Screw anyone in the community who can't deal with our ungrateful attitudes", then that is their choice. It certainly should be no suprise when people denounce their ethics and professionalism, though - they brought it on themselves.
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