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Old 07-17-2004, 12:37 AM   #1
UnKnOwN1205
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we had a coder and he stole our code and leaked it to some ppl. now there are many muds using our codebase with a bit of modifications, coloring and name changes. now we hardly have any players on. is it legal for them to do that? is there anything i can do?
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Old 07-17-2004, 01:41 AM   #2
Amnon
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No, it's not legal.
No, there's nothing you can do about it.

Next time, do the job yourself, and don't give anyone shell access.


You can, however, try and let people know about your situation. I'm sure a lot of people can "blacklist" the game if they know it's using stolen code... considering you have some sort of proof?
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Old 07-17-2004, 04:09 AM   #3
the_logos
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Take heart Unknown1205: The quality of a mud depends only partially on the code. The service you and your administration provide is at -least- as important (after all, improving the codebase is a service), and if you're good at that you never have to worry about anyone ripping you off. At best they can imitate, not steal.

--matt
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Old 08-10-2004, 07:14 AM   #4
Davairus
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Too late now but this is what you could have done.

Install a back door in your code.  Hide it as well as you can.  Make this function grant your mortal with imm powers invisible to everyone or something.  Encrypt a password someplace discreet so that only you can possibly get it.  Don't tell anybody else with code access about it.  EVER.  Remember to change this when your code is stolen. O_O.   Then, you may have your bloodied satisfaction.  Teh ChAos!!! O_o.....

My MUD had like 3 backdoors and when the code inevitably leaked, we got shafted by two of them, several times before I finally found them.  It can always be worse... heh.. takes a while and a fair bit of know-how to break the encryption on passworded backdoor though.
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Old 08-10-2004, 08:55 AM   #5
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Well actually there are things you can do, willing you want to invest the time and legalaties of the system. One is that all works the second they are created are copyrighted, registered or not, anyone who tells you otherwise has no clue what they are talking about, true registration offers more power but that deals mostly with distrubution. First you would need to know the mud's name, its web url, the company hosting the mud and the company hosting the website. Politely request the owner of the mud to discontinue use of your work (i.e. the code which would fall under literary work as most computer programs do, muds have been known to fall under pictorial also), if they refuse to discontinue use then contact the owner of the server and webhosting service. Tell them the situation, send them a copy of the email refusing to stop use, and tell them of your intent to pursue legal action against the mud developer and its affiliates, now the companies that host are not direct affiliates but they do not want to become entangled in a large legal battle where their information will be subpoenad and who knows what a company could be hiding. Whether you pursue a legal case or not (which I wouldn't its not worth it) this will more times than not, cause some type of action, normally in your favor. For more information on what you can and can't do with intellectual work please visit
http://www.copyright.gov/circs/circ1.html#wwp
This also applies to literary works and works of film, that's why there is always a copyright issue in the mud world, at some point fan fiction just turns into theft of ones work. If you create a mud, use your own imagination, your own creative spark, not a book or you're favorite show, incorporate some of those ideas but don't base your game around it, it could always bite you in the end.

That will hopefully get the ball rolling and hopefully help you get things settled.
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Old 08-10-2004, 12:58 PM   #6
Fiendish
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (UnKnOwN1205 @ July 16 2004,23:37)
we had a coder and he stole our code and leaked it to some ppl.   now there are many muds using our codebase with a bit of modifications, coloring and name changes.  now we hardly have any players on.  is it legal for them to do that? is there anything i can do?
Do you have any proof? If you do, please share it with the rest of us.
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