The Bullshit Roundup: EA’s Star Wars Rushing, Nintendo’s Minecraft Mess, FOX’s Content Theft

Time for another slice of bullshit from the big budget games industry, served steaming for your tasty pleasures.

On today’s edition, Electronic Arts admitted to gimping Star Wars Battlefront, Family Guy did a naughty thing, and Nintendo’s overreaching ContentID policy has seen it seize ad revenue it had absolutely no right to.

Oh what fun. What giddy, giddy fun!

01

Star Wars Battlefront Was Undercooked By Design 

Star Wars Battlefront was a promising game severely held back by a lack of content. While its foundation was rock solid, it was missing key features familiar to fans of the series, most notably a narrative campaign.

At the time, Electronic Arts had its excuses for focusing solely on multiplayer gameplay, with Peter Moore saying barely anybody plays single-player campaigns. It was obvious bullshit, not just because it’s blatantly untrue, but because Peter Moore was saying it.

We all knew it was crap, and EA has just recently confirmed it to be true.

Speaking to investors – typically the only people publishers consider worthy of the truth – EA’s Patrick Soderlund confessed to rushing Battlefront in order to launch alongside Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens. The game’s relative lack of features was a direct result of this expedited development process.

“We made [the choice] due to time and being able to launch the game side-by-side with the movie that came out to get the strongest possible impact,” he said when discussing the game’s missing campaign.

The lack of content had an impact on the game’s critical reception – Battlefront 2015‘s Metacritic score sits lower than any other release in the series – and Soderlund was forced to spin his way out of it.

“I think the team created a really good game based on the premise that we had,” he claimed. “I would say the game has done very well for us and reached a very different demographic than a traditional EA game.

“So from that perspective, it’s a success. Are we happy with the 75 rating? No. Is that something we’re going to cure going forward? Absolutely.”

The best long-term cure, of course, would be for Electronic Arts to stop being a big pile of wank, but I don’t see that miracle happening anytime soon. Instead, we can take solace from the fact EA’s learned a valuable lesson in sacrificing quality and credibility for a quick cash-in.

It’s a lesson EA seems to keep needing a refresher course in, and I hope one day it’ll actually fucking stick.

02

Nintendo’s Copyright Claiming Minecraft Videos

A Super Mario Mashup Pack for the Wii U version of Minecraft has seen a number of YouTubers hit with copyright claims thanks to Nintendo’s disgusting ContentID practices. This is despite assurances from Minecraft port handler 4J Studios that such a situation would not arise.

Minecraft benefitted immensely from YouTube, and has always been a game could content creators could count upon safely uploading without bullshit copyright claims. Nintendo, being Nintendo, has ruined that goodwill by claiming ownership of videos showing off the Mashup Pack – the DLC’s sound effects undoubtedly triggering ContentID’s automated claim bots.

4J Studios, to its credit, is doing what it can to make good on its word, and promises Nintendo will resolve the issue.

Nevertheless, this is a perfect demonstration of Nintendo’s utterly clueless and overreaching behavior when it comes to YouTube. The company’s overly protective measures are akin to an immune system with allergies, flagrantly overstepping its bounds and disrespecting fair use by seizing the ad revenue of videos containing even a tiny fraction of Nintendo game footage.

Nintendo clearly had to know this would happen and did nothing to stop it, resulting in lost revenue from video uploaders who were promised incident-free Minecraft coverage. As far as I’m concerned, the publisher’s ignorance is tantamount to stealing – it’s claimed ownership over a game it literally does not own, and financially fucked with people it has literally no right to fuck with.

That’s theft.

The fact there’s absolutely no penalty for doing so should be thoroughly galling. Situations like this should at least result in limitations on Nintendo’s ContentID privileges, but instead the company will be free to continue pissing all over fair use and running roughshod over Let’s Players, reviewers, and entertainers alike, with no regard for context or existing copyright law.

And of course, ContentID itself is once again shown to be an imbecilic sledgehammer wielded by vulgar thugs.

At the time of publication, this issue appears to remain unresolved.

03

FOX Steals Footage Then Fucks Over The Owner

As if YouTube’s copyright messes weren’t gross enough, we move on from Nintendo and onto FOX. Though the issue has now been sorted out, the media empire’s actions were nothing short of shocking.

This week’s episode of Family Guy used game footage from a 2009 YouTube video, seemingly without permission.

The video in question -uploaded by a user named sw1tched – highlights in a glitch in Double Dribble that allows the player to obtain a three-point goal. There’s a case to be made for Family Guy invoking fair use itself for the clip, but there’s absolutely no excuse for FOX’s next move – issuing a copyright takedown strike against the original.

Yep, after merrily using a video it didn’t own, FOX told YouTube it did own the video and exploited the site’s DMCA-like takedown system to have the 2009 upload removed.

Because of course, that’s a very reasonable thing to do.

Bots have been blamed for the untenable takedown strike, but if that’s the case, FOX needs to have a serious cocking think about how fair it is to put DMCA takedowns – something that has a very real impact on a channel and can actually result in somebody losing their livelihood – in the hands of programs with no sense of nuance, restraint, or legality.

I was always under the impression that takedown strikes needed to be manually filed with some actual human oversight, while it was only ContentID that could be handled by robotic claimants. I guess it was silly of me to assume that YouTube would enforce some level of responsibility among its corporate chums, so I’ll take that on the chin as a learning point.

Sw1tched, for their part, is just happy to have the video back and has remained classy throughout the problem.

“Well, after much confusion and Internet buzz around the web it seems I got my video back without even doing anything,” they said in a comment on the video. “I really appreciate that because all I wanted was my video… nothing more.”

At the time of publication, there are no rules that allow sw1tched to instantly remove this week’s Family Guy from circulation unchallenged, even though that’d only be fair.

James Robert Thompson
Guest
James Robert Thompson

If it was a bot at fault fox would be taking YouTube to court for defamation. That’s not happening so they’re clearly lying. A company doesn’t simply roll over when another company steals money in their name.

PassingAtRandom
Guest
PassingAtRandom

So…”SW Battlefront” was “rushed” to take advantage of Ep VII? really? i couldn’t have noticed, i only pointed it out once and again and again and again and people kept on telling me off…

Artemiy
Guest
Artemiy

The sad thing is, they didn’t really take advantage of Ep. VII because there was no Force Awakens content.

PassingAtRandom
Guest
PassingAtRandom

Didn’t they added “the battle of jaku” or something?

Janio
Guest
Janio
Yes, battle of jaku has to do with the movie, because its in the pocket named battlefront which connected to the movie. But its just a map with specific game-mode on a planet enviroment that jaku. There is no where a new stromtrooper to be seen except for those black trooper which you have to grind your way to (nearly ) end cap or pay money for to unlock. Its listed a (sort of) DLC , its not its pay to win, because black armoured player will confuse you and weapons where tactical OP if play a game style the… Read more »
Janio
Guest
Janio

Yes, battle of jaku has to do with the movie, because its in the pocket named battlefront which connected to the movie.
But its just a map with specific game-mode on a planet enviroment that jaku. There is no where a new stromtrooper to be seen except for those black trooper which have grind your way to (nearly ) end cap or pay money for to unlock.
Its listed a (sort of) DLC )

Artemiy
Guest
Artemiy

They did, but technically it was pre-ep. VII.

Sam
Guest
Sam
I honestly think, with how demonstrable it is that automated bots are insufficient to effectively handle such matters, that it should be illegal for copyright action to be taken by an automated system. As you thought the situation was Jim, one should be able to put bots out to hunt down potential infringements, but they should then need to be reviewed by an actual bloody human being before deciding whether or not to make the claim. If only there was some repercussion for filing spurious claims, especially a large amount of them, constantly. Then we’d see these companies give a… Read more »
mazazon
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mazazon
I’m just shocked that with money being lost nobody has attempted to “counter-sue”, which might not be an appropriate term because the claimants of the first suit usually have little to no case and often don’t even bother to file. But people are potentially losing livelihoods to this BS, it’d probably be a landmark case but I can certainly see some facts in favour of Youtubers, especially in the U.S. where appeals to free speech tend to be an easier win. I want someone to try and counter-sue or at least sue Youtube for withholding payment on the basis of… Read more »
Sperium3000
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Sperium3000

That Fox thing is disgusting, Jesus F. Christ.

Uzuki
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Uzuki

Are you serious Fox? Or should I say writers of Family Guy. This isn’t the first time they’ve stolen a joke/sketch. Granted a few are pretty obvious of pop culture, but there are times when they straight up copy a youtube video without adding anything except maybe a giggity or pointing out that it’s from youtube. Didn’t they supposedly steal a joke AND a sketch from Doug Walker?

Kelerak
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Kelerak

I remember them stealing the Peanut Butter Jelly Time joke.

Lloyd
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Lloyd

Because the laws and enforcement of them are long overdue of updating and improved oversight. But then again Donald Trump is going to be on a Presidential ballot soon, so there is quite a lot fucked up with this country right now.

SilentPony
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SilentPony

I wonder when the YouTube bubble will burst. We all know it will.
Problems will keep building, lawsuits, strikes, abuse, drama, stealing, etc… It’ll burst and basically anyone smaller than…Markiplier won’t be able to monetize their videos. Google will just shut off the faucets and that’s that.

Miles Saintborough
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Miles Saintborough

Let’s hope it happens. Youtube can use a fresh new start.

Zanten
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Zanten

Aaaah, Fox and using content without permission… anyone remember that whole debacle with Jonathan Coulton’s cover of Baby Got Back and Glee? I can’t remember what was worse, the fact that their theft of his instrumental version was so blatant is even included the ‘Johnny C’s in trouble’ line, or that the response their lawyers gave was that JoCo should be ‘Thankful for the exposure,’ despite the fact that they in no way credited or even mentioned him, simply listing it as a cover of the original Baby Got Back. =P

kirtanloorii
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kirtanloorii

I honestly considered doing something on youtube, but all this content ID crap has me completely and totally deterred.

ImaLemming
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ImaLemming

Did Jim forget about Microsoft refusing offers for the Fable IP? He was asked about it on Ask.fm and said “there’s no way that won’t make it in.”

Andreas Dellrud
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Andreas Dellrud

Why would they let go of an IP? Fable as a brand is still quite valuable and I would assume they want the opportunity to make more games. That and remake the ones they’ve already got!

Sned
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Sned

The bad thing about it is that microsoft would lay off 100+ people, just to keep an IP which they will never use. Think about what they’ve done with Rare’s assets. Very little…

I guess the worst part of this, is that lionhead could still be around, Fable: Legends could still be happing, and microsoft could have sold lionhead for a hefty price. It would have been a triple-win situation. Instead, the fable franchise now has no developer, and no game. You can pretty much call the franchise dead.

Andreas Dellrud
Guest
Andreas Dellrud
I have tried to make the argument that Lionhead was worth keeping around but honestly, what have they done? If you look at their history they haven’t really made a good game since Fable 3, and some would argue that that wasn’t very good. Keeping a company around on old merits instead of closing down in hope of one day be able to release a good Fable-game is bad business. I played Fable Legends, it wasn’t very good, you’re better of playing Dungeonland. Regarding Rare I know to little to make an infomrmed argument but based on the Rare Collection… Read more »
Wolfie
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Wolfie

Rare? Back when it was still under Nintendo, during the N64 era.

MechaSlinky
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MechaSlinky

That’s not true! They’ve released plenty of good games on XBox! Such as those remasters of their classic N64 platformers, or the remaster of their classic N64 shooter, or their collection of 30 games including some of their classic N64 platformers and shooters.

Wolfie
Guest
Wolfie

Real talk? My favorite game ever, still do this day. Banjo-Kazooie.

ScoundrelDays
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ScoundrelDays
I genuinely think that Rare catches a lot of unfair flack. Kameo was actually a really good launch title, with a good mechanic that could have spawned interesting sequels but, sadly, Microsoft didn’t know how to market it (compare it with Knack for fun). Viva Piñata, and Viva Piñata:TiP, were, for me, two of the 360’s best original titles; they were huge, funny, vibrant, and really intricately balanced. Who doesn’t want to see two Buzzlegums, or Bees if you insist, doing their sexy thing? But, again, Microsoft just didn’t know how best to market it. The cartoon was a good… Read more »
Wolfie
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Wolfie
That was an interesting read. .To be honest, I can’t have much say, considering the last system I was heavily invested in was the GameCube. I don’t care what fucking anyone says, that was a great little system. But I’ve been pretty much just a PC gamer since then. I have a Wii, but I barely touched the thing. I’ll choose a controller over motion-control any day. Anyway, I think part of the problem is these studios or publishers (whichever is more appropriate) like Microsoft and others you listed is they don’t seem to understand the base, or don’t care.… Read more »
MechaSlinky
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MechaSlinky

I need that game in my life again. I finally have a 360 again, so maybe I can splurge/splooge on some N64 classics.

MechaSlinky
Guest
MechaSlinky

“Think about what they’ve done with Rare’s assets. Very little…”

That’s not really true. They’ve managed to brutally manglefuck most of them into the grave.

Killer Instinct is, of course, a… Rare exception.
*drops mic, puts on sunglasses, backflips onto a horse, horse backflips into a convertible, convertible backflips into the sunset*

A Roast Beef Sandwich
Guest
A Roast Beef Sandwich

Fuck YouTube. Until they fix their fucking shit I will be using AdBlock exclusively

Powermad80
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Powermad80

Honestly youtube should get a lot more shit for this than they do currently. We can yell angrily at companies and their poorly handled automatic claims all we want but Youtube are the ones that run the system and keep letting it happen. Who’s the bigger fool, the fool or the one who allows him?

MechaSlinky
Guest
MechaSlinky

Gerald. Gerald is the bigger fool.

kunuri
Guest

Ninty fans will defend this

Powermad80
Guest
Powermad80

No we won’t, go back to /v/ with your shit thread headlines and make another one of those stupid threads.

Matthew Johnson
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Matthew Johnson

Yeah, no. Lifelong Nintendo fanboy here, but they can go fuck themselves over this bullshit.

Miles Saintborough
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Miles Saintborough

He says with an icon straight out of Animal Crossing.

Wolfie
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Wolfie

I grew up with Nintendo. I love Nintendo.

Fuck them and their [♪SKELETON WARRIORS♫] bullshit straight into Hell’s sexually-writhing anus.

Polishfury5000
Guest
Polishfury5000

You’d think EA would have put in maps and assets from Episode 7 if they wanted to release SWBF so close to it. Otherwise, why bother? It’s Star Wars, and Star Wars will always sell regardless of the time of year. Especially a game that’s a long awaited sequel to a series wanted by many.

They were given a license to print money, but only made small bills.

DeadlyYellow
Guest
DeadlyYellow

Forgetting the Battle for Jakku DLC?

Closest they came, and probably could come at the time.

Polishfury5000
Guest
Polishfury5000

I thought of that, but it was still just the same units playing it. The connection to the movie is in name alone. It’s just the wreckage of an Imperial Star Destroyer.

It could have just as easily been called “Battle of Tatooine”.

Janio
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Janio

Yakkun , has to do with pocket Battlefront. Its major battle where lots of star destroyers where destroyed. Haven’t read the pocket or listend to the audiobook.

Charlie Koszulinski
Guest
Charlie Koszulinski

But that’s just DLC for people who pre-ordered. What about those who didn’t pre-order and don’t bother with DLC? They just get a standard Star Wars game with everything but The Force Awakened in it, thus making the release time trivial.

DeadlyYellow
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DeadlyYellow

Sources say it went available for everyone Dec 8th. Can’t seem to locate an actual download, so might just be a sleeper install in the game update now.

Polishfury5000
Guest
Polishfury5000

Yeah, I got the game as Christmas gift. Jakku was just a free download you could snag when you booted up the game. Didn’t put in a code or anything, just selected it on the main menu and the download started.

The Interloper
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The Interloper

From what I’ve heard, Battlefront still made a ridiculous amount of money, but I bet they would’ve made more if they’d made a better game and put more content into it.

If only that were perceived to be true in the minds of the only people that matter when the game’s being made: EA company heads.

La Chica Incognita
Guest
La Chica Incognita

Sw1tched should issue a takedown notice on Fox for using his content…which isn’t how real life works because normal human beings aren’t allowed the same privileges and power that large faceless corporations that are legally treated like human beings have.

It’s kind of ironic I just watched that episode today and thought “hey they’re referencing old NES games that the overwhelming majority of their audience won’t get at all, that’s actually kind of cool”…then I read this. Fuck you Fox.

kunuri
Guest

Genuine question, do you reckon the commentary added to the gameplay qualifies as transformitive? There are some fairly large channels, i.e. RetsuPrae who frequently upload commentaries of other channels’ let’s plays, for instance.

La Chica Incognita
Guest
La Chica Incognita
It could but it very much depends on what is being added. For example; MST3K add their commentary over the entirety of a movie giving the experience an entire new element and dimension from the original and while the original movie isn’t theirs, what they produced is something that is different enough to be treated as a separate entity that is “theirs”. They also used movies either with permission or that were in the public domain so they were free to apply whatever they wanted to it. Family guy putting their dialogue over the youtube video doesn’t make it theirs.… Read more »
targetbuddy
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targetbuddy
I think there’s an argument to be made that commentary is superfluous, as gameplay is transformative by it’s very nature. I see games compared to movies a lot in this argument, but watching a movie and playing a game are two totally different types of experiences. With the vast majority of games, you can’t emulate the feeling of controlling the game by watching a video of its gameplay. It’s more akin to saying that FL Studios owns every song made solely with its software. You’ve purchased a piece of software (or a license to use said software), and with a… Read more »
RedWolf
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RedWolf

And that’s another reason for me to utterly despise Family Guy and everything it represents.

Leon the Brave
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Leon the Brave

Funny that companies say we steal from them and so want tighter control over everything they own, but THEY are the ones taking content off the Internet without consent.

Hypocrites.

Brotown
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Brotown

Hey now…they have to be able to put food on the table to feed their family’s. Tho what it is theyre actually feeding their family’s with? I dont know. I assume Imperial Faberge Eggs or something of the sort.

The struggle is real.

RedWolf
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RedWolf

I remember the whole Warner Bros. case with them stealing memes to use in Scribblenauts and giving the excuse of “it’s on the internet so it’s free to use”.

Leon the Brave
Guest
Leon the Brave

Yeah, Nyan Cat and Keyboard Cat. I remember.

DeadlyYellow
Guest
DeadlyYellow

Fun fact: Monsanto can sue farmers for theft if the farmer’s non-Monsanto crop strains get pollinated by Monsanto strains.

R.Hoffmann
Guest

Nintendo is a company from yesterday, through and through.

Appretaur
Guest
Appretaur

“Minecraft benefitted immensely from YouTube, and has always
been a game could content creators could count upon safely uploading
without bullshit copyright claims”?

“The video in question -uploaded by a user named sw1tched – highlights in a glitch in Double Dribble”?

Between the extra nonsensical uses of “could” and “in”, and the misspelling of “benefited”, I wonder if we’re seeing Dysterlinga at play. 😉

samuel roy
Guest
samuel roy

In paragraph 18, you used the conjunction “it’s” when you should’ve used the possessive “its”, and in paragraph 15, you had a little mess up on the first line. In paragraph 25, in the first sentence, you used the word “in” in a grammatically incorrect fashion, and in the last paragraph, you failed to capitalize the username “Sw1tched”. But fine work, I absolutely agree with you.

Appretaur
Guest
Appretaur

Well, the YouTube channel is literally named “sw1tched” without the capitalization, so I doubt there’s anything wrong there…

samuel roy
Guest
samuel roy

It’s a bit inconsistent though, given that he capitalized it in every other instance of its use. Also, it is a proper noun, so it should be capitalized.

HaiYah
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HaiYah

Well “iPhone” is a proper noun as well but that doesn’t follow usual capitalization rules either. If something’s name is deliberately spelled or written out a certain way, then that is the proper way to spell it.

cheapLEY
Guest
cheapLEY

Says the guy with no capitalization in his username . . .

Aria DiMezzo
Guest
By far, the most egregious one is Fox. When I read about it earlier today, I honestly couldn’t believe it. They stole a video from Youtube, used it without permission in a show, and then DMCA’d the video they stole on the grounds that their stealing it superseded the initial guy’s ownership of the video. Wow. The Minecraft/Nintendo shit is stunning, too, but I don’t think it’s quite as egregious as Fox’s bullshit. But it’s all bad. Then again, I argue that *all* intellectual property is bad, as it necessarily supersedes actual property rights. I also argue that the game… Read more »
Appretaur
Guest
Appretaur

The FOX story kind of resembles the whole King/Candy Crush thing where a company took someone else’s previously-released game, made their own version of it, then legally went after that someone-else’s game with the claim that that someone-else was infringing on their own game…

Vulturius
Guest
Vulturius
Ehh… That’s not a very good comparison. Where Word is concerned, Microsoft cannot claim ownership of anything someone writes because the words that are written were written by you. You own the words. And should you have others read the words you’ve written, did you print it out? Move it to the body of an email? Then it’s no longer in Word. A publisher won’t publish a book in Word. It’ll be on paper or in the form of a digital e-book file. Now, if you are giving people copies of Word to read your stuff, then that is piracy… Read more »
Aria DiMezzo
Guest
It seems that you missed the analogy, because they are, in fact, direct parallels. You’re treating video games like they’re some sort of special thing–they’re not. They’re computer programs that take input and give output, just like MS Office. The game is a program that accepts input from the player to create output per the program’s parameters (it displays characters moving and stuff). Microsoft Word is a program that accepts input from the writer to create output per the program’s parameters (it displays characters, cursors, and stuff). You’re not seeing a video game for what it is: a computer program… Read more »
Aria DiMezzo
Guest
Another analogy: Bob is an architect. Bob designed a really awesome blueprint for a house. People come along and use Bob’s framework (the blueprint) (in our analogy, the game itself is the framework, as it is the algorithm that takes the input and turns it into output). They get the lumber and stuff they need (the raw input), and follow Bob’s blueprints to the letter (in effect, Bob’s blueprints as a “program” are run on the “input”), and the result is a house (the output). Does Bob own the house? No! Obviously not. And, again, the analogy holds up perfectly… Read more »
Vulturius
Guest
Vulturius
Well, that’s the thing, though. Programs do have different rules than other things. It’s the same as music, movies or books. You don’t own it. You aren’t the person who has the right to make money off of it. You can flip a house all you want though. Bob doesn’t care, he got paid for building it. It’s not the same thing… You say you own your own input. Do you though? The input you put in to a game is finite. If you tell a group of people to write a story about Vampires, the results will vary wildly.… Read more »
HoddTodd
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HoddTodd

Aren’t those three big corporations just the nicest, most trustworthy and fair ones out there? (^:

whiskytangofoxtrot
Guest
whiskytangofoxtrot

Fuck Nintendo.

kunuri
Guest

Level Nintendo HQ with a precision artillery barrage.

Powermad80
Guest
Powermad80

Yeah kill all those innocent people making a living and cause massive property damage all because a few people did something they shouldn’t have on youtube.

DeadlyYellow
Guest
DeadlyYellow

So standard US Military procedure?

diamond
Guest
diamond

I watched that Family Guy episode and was wondering where that footage came from, don’t think it should be taken out of circulation though. There was another episode of FG that featured a clip from one of the Modern Warfare games(I think it was the second one), I wonder if that was taken from a Youtube video as well?

Imp Emissary
Guest
Imp Emissary

Dang. Guess it shouldn’t surprise me that the biggest bit of bullcrap came from old “Bullshit Mountain”. xp

Well, at least they can’t do this on purpose to steal add revenue (Unless Youtube somehow messed up the changes they said they were making. ;p)

The Reckonist
Guest
The Reckonist

I tweeted you the Fox bullshit very early this morning. Therefore, I request accreditation!

CyanManta
Guest
CyanManta

By Fox’s own logic, Jim owns your tweet now because he’s the bigger media entity, and he can now sue you for stealing back the content he stole from you.

Logan Graham
Guest
Logan Graham

Wow. Nice job Fox.

CyanManta
Guest
CyanManta

I hope you don’t mean that sincerely, that you’re complimenting Fox for fixing a problem they themselves caused.

able_to_think
Guest
able_to_think

Pretty sure he’s being sarcastic.

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