Piracy as Protest- You're Doing it Wrong

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NOTE: There's an obvious target audience for this thread, I hope the title implies it well enough. Really. There's no way it doesn't.

Anyway, yes, if you pirate games to protest DRM or other corporate practices you disagree with, you're doing it wrong. In fact, chances are you're just making it all worse.

This is an excerpt from Martin Luther King Jr.'s Letter from a Birmingham Jail-

One who breaks an unjust law must do so openly, lovingly, and with a willingness to accept the penalty. I submit that an individual who breaks a law that conscience tells him is unjust, and who willingly accepts the penalty of imprisonment in order to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the highest respect for law.

Now, yes, that was written in the 60s over a different issue, but it's about the principle. He's absolutely right. When you break an unjust law because you can, that just looks childish, like an eight year old breaking his parents' rules when he's out with friends. When you break a law out of moral obligation, and accept the consequences out of moral obligation, that's meaningful protest.

But it actually gets simpler than that in this case. Think from a developer/publisher's perspective. When you pirate a game, you hurt them and benefit from it (from the piracy, not from hurting them, unless you're into that sort of thing). And really, if someone robs your house, what would you do? Put in a security system. That's DRM right there. And if someone keeps robbing your house, you get better security until you can keep them out.

Using piracy to protest DRM is impressively misguided. Piracy started a fire, and you're spraying gasoline into it expecting it to go away.

"But Phlakes!" you say. "It's like boycotting. We're depriving them of sales to send a message." Yes, but do you know what message you're sending? That they need to improve their security. You don't give a robber your jewelry to keep him out of your house. So what should you be doing? Well, actually boycotting would definitely be a good start.

Again, think from the other perspective. Let's say (and I have no idea what's accurate here, pulling numbers out of my ass) 500000 people don't buy a game out of protest, and either 1) they pirate it, or 2) they boycott it.

1) Your game just got pirated by 500000 people. You don't for a second think about what they want, you think about protecting your shit. You put more effective DRM to try to cut down on the amount of people pirating the game.

2) 500000 people just didn't buy your game because they don't like your DRM. You think "alright, I'd really like to have those sales back", but of course, you can't make people buy your game.

The difference is incredibly obvious. If you want real change, you can't force them into it through aggression. They're a business, so they do what's good for business, and maximizing sales is good for business. If people pirate their game, they maximize sales by trying to prevent piracy. If people boycott the game, they maximize sales by trying to get those people back, and that's how you get change.

By pirating, you become a thorn in their side. And you know what they do with thorns? They try to pull them out, and keep on going. Even if enough thorns get stuck in them, they may stop for a while, but once they can walk again they keep on walking. So don't be a thorn. Be a wall, right in front of them, and give them no choice but to change direction. Or walk into a wall, I guess. So the next time you consider pirating a game because you don't like something the publisher is doing, don't pirate it. And don't buy it. Show that you're willing to deprive yourself of the game to incite change, because that's protest, and that'll get you results.

Also, please keep moral debates out of this thread. This is about protest, not piracy itself.

You've got a good point, piracy is for people that want to boycott but don't have the balls to go without their precious product.

If you refuse to buy a game, then you have made your protest. Pirating it or not doesn't make any difference because the idea was to not give money to the publisher/developer.

Publishers are going to make up piracy numbers whether you pirate or not so again, it doesn't matter.

BTW, it also doesn't matter what message you are sending, it matters what message they want to hear and if they want justification to do something...you're the scapegoat. You can scream all over the internet that you are pirating Spore to protest it's DRM but the publishers won't listen to that reason because it doesn't suit them.

People who pirate a DRM-laden game in protest are unbelievably stupid, but I think that's a pretty small number. I would be money that most people who say they're pirating something to stick it to the man would have pirated it anyway.

Now, as for people who download "illegal" cracks to make the game they paid for work, because the DRM malfunctioned, those guys I can sympathize with.

erttheking:
You've got a good point, piracy is for people that want to boycott but don't have the balls to go without their precious product.

I disagree , piracy are for people who are cheap . Op makes good points , but that won't convice anyone . I sorta agree with what ubisoft is doing. I kind of encourage it ,i mean i don't like the always online stuff , but it is a valiant effort on their part . I just hope they find a way that works AND keeps pirates at bay , i am sick and tired of hearing about pirates and their shenanigans.

I agree with what the OP said, if someone was trying to excuse their piracy with "it's to boycott their DRM". The problem, of course, is that probably most people don't really care about the DRM, they just want free shit.

That said, of course as piracy goes up so does the incentive to use DRM.

Crono1973:
If you refuse to buy a game, then you have made your protest. Pirating it or not doesn't make any difference because the idea was to not give money to the publisher/developer.

Publishers are going to make up piracy numbers whether you pirate or not so again, it doesn't matter.

BTW, it also doesn't matter what message you are sending, it matters what message they want to hear and if they want justification to do something...you're the scapegoat. You can scream all over the internet that you are pirating Spore to protest it's DRM but the publishers won't listen to that reason because it doesn't suit them.

If you want change, the message you send definitely matters. That's what boycotting is for, if they see that they're losing a notable amount of sales that they can get back by changing something, chances are it'll be changed. The problem is that gamers are some of the flakiest, balls-not-havingest people in the world, so it's almost impossible to organize.

heres ONE thing I dont agree with

"pfffftt yeah well mabye if they made a game WORTH paying for I would pirate"

yeah, why dont you just fucking NOT pirate it if you dont think its worth paying for...thats pure self entitlement

1) There will always be pirates

2) removing DRM removes any justification people might have to pirate

3) Step 1 happens again, because there will ALWAYS be pirates

--> Companies see no benefit in removing DRM.

Phlakes:

Crono1973:
If you refuse to buy a game, then you have made your protest. Pirating it or not doesn't make any difference because the idea was to not give money to the publisher/developer.

Publishers are going to make up piracy numbers whether you pirate or not so again, it doesn't matter.

BTW, it also doesn't matter what message you are sending, it matters what message they want to hear and if they want justification to do something...you're the scapegoat. You can scream all over the internet that you are pirating Spore to protest it's DRM but the publishers won't listen to that reason because it doesn't suit them.

If you want change, the message you send definitely matters. That's what boycotting is for, if they see that they're losing a notable amount of sales that they can get back by changing something, chances are it'll be changed. The problem is that gamers are some of the flakiest, balls-not-havingest people in the world, so it's almost impossible to organize.

Whatever. I grow so tired of the insults gamers throw at each other and themselves. It's funny that you miss the message that gamers send but I guess that makes you living proof of my point. It doesn't matter what message you send because the publishers are only going to hear what they want to hear.

People boycotted and pirated Spore and they made it clear why on Amazon reviews. EA most certainly saw the message but ignored it because that's not the message they want to hear.

You also have to realize that DRM is not about stopping piracy, it's about publishers being able to gain control of a product, even after they have sold it. So you go on creating "pirates are bad" threads till your fingers fall off but it won't change anything because you are barking up the wrong tree.

You "boycott the DRM" by buying the game then cracking it I suppose.

Also, DRM is not always the product of the publisher I suppose, so there are third parties interested in keeping it in...

Oh this thread again? ... Really? Is the search bar broken? It was working the last time I checked. I'm fairly sure you know how to use it phlakes. Isn't it interesting you've set it up so that anyone with a direct opposite opinion would have to violate forum rules to express it. They have a word for that.

I think we're all missing the point, (some) people are just giving excuses to pirate, if it isn't DRM; it'll be a company's policies or PR, or someone involved with the company.

I mean, you can tell people something is wrong until the sun goes down and comes up again, but regardless of that if someone wants to get game and don't wanna drop the change, it'll always be this way. Unless you make everything FOSS or something (not that's really a lucrative option)

Lucem712:
I think we're all missing the point, (some) people are just giving excuses to pirate, if it isn't DRM; it'll be a company's policies or PR, or someone involved with the company.

I mean, you can tell people something is wrong until the sun goes down and comes up again, but regardless of that if someone wants to get game and don't wanna drop the change, it'll always be this way. Unless you make everything FOSS or something (not that's really a lucrative option)

...are you going to present the other side of the argument?

I am guessing you aren't so allow me. DRM isn't about stopping piracy, it's about gaining control over software even after it's bought (because that's how they make more money). Therefore, people are giving publishers an excuse for DRM. Even without piracy, publishers don't like fair use. They want every person who plays a game to pay for it and full price. They don't want you sharing with friends or even your own children.

Crono1973:

Lucem712:
I think we're all missing the point, (some) people are just giving excuses to pirate, if it isn't DRM; it'll be a company's policies or PR, or someone involved with the company.

I mean, you can tell people something is wrong until the sun goes down and comes up again, but regardless of that if someone wants to get game and don't wanna drop the change, it'll always be this way. Unless you make everything FOSS or something (not that's really a lucrative option)

...are you going to present the other side of the argument?

I am guessing you aren't so allow me. DRM isn't about stopping piracy, it's about gaining control over software even after it's bought (because that's how they make more money). Therefore, people are giving publishers an excuse for DRM. Even without piracy, publishers don't like fair use. They want every person who plays a game to pay for it and full price. They don't want you sharing with friends or even your own children.

Oh, I'm not against DRM (I'm not even a PC gamer, or much of one rather) and I think companies are allowed to protect their investments/products. I was just saying that people aren't using piracy as a form of protest, they are just using it as an excuse to do said activity.

Lucem712:

Crono1973:

Lucem712:
I think we're all missing the point, (some) people are just giving excuses to pirate, if it isn't DRM; it'll be a company's policies or PR, or someone involved with the company.

I mean, you can tell people something is wrong until the sun goes down and comes up again, but regardless of that if someone wants to get game and don't wanna drop the change, it'll always be this way. Unless you make everything FOSS or something (not that's really a lucrative option)

...are you going to present the other side of the argument?

I am guessing you aren't so allow me. DRM isn't about stopping piracy, it's about gaining control over software even after it's bought (because that's how they make more money). Therefore, people are giving publishers an excuse for DRM. Even without piracy, publishers don't like fair use. They want every person who plays a game to pay for it and full price. They don't want you sharing with friends or even your own children.

Oh, I'm not against DRM (I'm not even a PC gamer, or much of one rather) and I think companies are allowed to protect their investments/products. I was just saying that people aren't using piracy as a form of protest, they are just using it as an excuse to do said activity.

There are limits to protecting your product, eliminating fair use goes beyond that limit in my opinion. Anyway, how would you know why pirates do what they do? Are you a pirate or are you just guessing here?

Please don't tell me about how all 99999 of your friends are pirates.

Crono1973:

There are limits to protecting your product, eliminating fair use goes beyond that limit in my opinion. Anyway, how would you know why pirates do what they do? Are you a pirate or are you just guessing here?

Please don't tell me about how all 99999 of your friends are pirates.

I'm not a pirate and I'm just going off human nature, some people are just looking for justifications of their actions. I want to do this, it's wrong, but this person is a dick so they deserve it.

Just like a comment I saw on Youtube (on ME3 DLC's and such) explaining how they were going to protest EA/Bioware by pirating and getting all DLCs. This person would probably pirate regardless of what EA does or does not do, they want it for free and are justifying it.

Not to say all pirates justify their actions and not to say some people don't actually consider it a way to protest.

I'm not aware if any of my mates pirate but I discouraged a mate from pirating Skyrim.

Lucem712:

Crono1973:

There are limits to protecting your product, eliminating fair use goes beyond that limit in my opinion. Anyway, how would you know why pirates do what they do? Are you a pirate or are you just guessing here?

Please don't tell me about how all 99999 of your friends are pirates.

I'm not a pirate and I'm just going off human nature, some people are just looking for justifications of their actions. I want to do this, it's wrong, but this person is a dick so they deserve it.

Just like a comment I saw on Youtube (on ME3 DLC's and such) explaining how they were going to protest EA/Bioware by pirating and getting all DLCs. This person would probably pirate regardless of what EA does or does not do, they want it for free and are justifying it.

Not to say all pirates justify their actions and not to say some people don't actually consider it a way to protest.

I'm not aware if any of my mates pirate but I discouraged a mate from pirating Skyrim.

There is only one condition to boycott, DON'T BUY IT! Anything else doesn't matter.

DRM isn't for the pirates, it's for YOU.

This topic speaks the truth. The only viable way to boycott something is to actually, you know, boycott it. Pirating or buying used only does two things, neither of them what you want. First, it shows the game companies that you want their product so bad that you are willing to do whatever it takes to get it (including, in the case of piracy, something that is illegal in many places). Second, it just encourages them to find ways to get around the problem like, as the topic says, putting in DRM or as in the case of used games finding any way possible to squash the used market.

If you really want to prove a point to the game companies, whatever your point may be, the only way to do so is to show them that your chosen issue is so important that it is actually stopping you from even playing Game X at all.

Crono1973:

Lucem712:

Crono1973:

There are limits to protecting your product, eliminating fair use goes beyond that limit in my opinion. Anyway, how would you know why pirates do what they do? Are you a pirate or are you just guessing here?

Please don't tell me about how all 99999 of your friends are pirates.

I'm not a pirate and I'm just going off human nature, some people are just looking for justifications of their actions. I want to do this, it's wrong, but this person is a dick so they deserve it.

Just like a comment I saw on Youtube (on ME3 DLC's and such) explaining how they were going to protest EA/Bioware by pirating and getting all DLCs. This person would probably pirate regardless of what EA does or does not do, they want it for free and are justifying it.

Not to say all pirates justify their actions and not to say some people don't actually consider it a way to protest.

I'm not aware if any of my mates pirate but I discouraged a mate from pirating Skyrim.

There is only one condition to boycott, DON'T BUY IT! Anything else doesn't matter.

DRM isn't for the pirates, it's for YOU.

I agree that people should actually protest by not buying the game or service and the only way companies will see that their DRM has gone too far (like if you have a problem with Origins or always-online DRM) is to not purchase the game and maybe even shoot them an e-mail (they might not even care but if they get enough, they might get a hint) saying that you wanted to purchase a game/service but don't agree with their DRM policies.

All piracy does is give said company even more excuse to implement more drastic measures.

Lucem712:

Crono1973:

Lucem712:

I'm not a pirate and I'm just going off human nature, some people are just looking for justifications of their actions. I want to do this, it's wrong, but this person is a dick so they deserve it.

Just like a comment I saw on Youtube (on ME3 DLC's and such) explaining how they were going to protest EA/Bioware by pirating and getting all DLCs. This person would probably pirate regardless of what EA does or does not do, they want it for free and are justifying it.

Not to say all pirates justify their actions and not to say some people don't actually consider it a way to protest.

I'm not aware if any of my mates pirate but I discouraged a mate from pirating Skyrim.

There is only one condition to boycott, DON'T BUY IT! Anything else doesn't matter.

DRM isn't for the pirates, it's for YOU.

I agree that people should actually protest by not buying the game or service and the only way companies will see that their DRM has gone too far (like if you have a problem with Origins or always-online DRM) is to not purchase the game and maybe even shoot them an e-mail (they might not even care but if they get enough, they might get a hint) saying that you wanted to purchase a game/service but don't agree with their DRM policies.

All piracy does is give said company even more excuse to implement more drastic measures.

You aren't understanding why the DRM is in place, it's to control the paying customer, not to stop the pirate. Without piracy, the paying customer still exists and they still want to loan a game to their friends or resell it and that is why there is DRM.

Crono1973:

Lucem712:
I think we're all missing the point, (some) people are just giving excuses to pirate, if it isn't DRM; it'll be a company's policies or PR, or someone involved with the company.

I mean, you can tell people something is wrong until the sun goes down and comes up again, but regardless of that if someone wants to get game and don't wanna drop the change, it'll always be this way. Unless you make everything FOSS or something (not that's really a lucrative option)

...are you going to present the other side of the argument?

I am guessing you aren't so allow me. DRM isn't about stopping piracy, it's about gaining control over software even after it's bought (because that's how they make more money). Therefore, people are giving publishers an excuse for DRM. Even without piracy, publishers don't like fair use. They want every person who plays a game to pay for it and full price. They don't want you sharing with friends or even your own children.

Ayup.

People shouldn't pirate games they're boycotting because it makes DRM necessary, its that big businesses use the big, scary piracy numbers as an excuse to control their products post-purchase.
Lessen the piracy statistics to make the justifications for bad DRM weaker.

Still, I can't help but feel like people "pirating in protest" are just using a convenient justification for their piracy, which annoys me terribly, as it obfuscates the sentiment of the people who are doing this because they feel strongly about the issue.

Crono1973:

Lucem712:

Crono1973:

There is only one condition to boycott, DON'T BUY IT! Anything else doesn't matter.

DRM isn't for the pirates, it's for YOU.

I agree that people should actually protest by not buying the game or service and the only way companies will see that their DRM has gone too far (like if you have a problem with Origins or always-online DRM) is to not purchase the game and maybe even shoot them an e-mail (they might not even care but if they get enough, they might get a hint) saying that you wanted to purchase a game/service but don't agree with their DRM policies.

All piracy does is give said company even more excuse to implement more drastic measures.

You aren't understanding why the DRM is in place, it's to control the paying customer, not the stop the pirate. Without piracy, the paying customer still exists and they still want to loan a game to their friends or resell it and that is why there is DRM.

I'm not saying it isn't for the consumer, you're correct. This isn't really about why it's there, it's just about why piracy isn't the right way to go about protesting issues with DRM or other policies the company has.

Erana:

Crono1973:

Lucem712:
I think we're all missing the point, (some) people are just giving excuses to pirate, if it isn't DRM; it'll be a company's policies or PR, or someone involved with the company.

I mean, you can tell people something is wrong until the sun goes down and comes up again, but regardless of that if someone wants to get game and don't wanna drop the change, it'll always be this way. Unless you make everything FOSS or something (not that's really a lucrative option)

...are you going to present the other side of the argument?

I am guessing you aren't so allow me. DRM isn't about stopping piracy, it's about gaining control over software even after it's bought (because that's how they make more money). Therefore, people are giving publishers an excuse for DRM. Even without piracy, publishers don't like fair use. They want every person who plays a game to pay for it and full price. They don't want you sharing with friends or even your own children.

Ayup.

People shouldn't pirate games they're boycotting because it makes DRM necessary, its that big businesses use the big, scary piracy numbers as an excuse to control their products post-purchase.
Lessen the piracy statistics to make the justifications for bad DRM weaker.

Piracy numbers are made up anyway so what difference do the real numbers make?

Lucem712:

Crono1973:

Lucem712:

I agree that people should actually protest by not buying the game or service and the only way companies will see that their DRM has gone too far (like if you have a problem with Origins or always-online DRM) is to not purchase the game and maybe even shoot them an e-mail (they might not even care but if they get enough, they might get a hint) saying that you wanted to purchase a game/service but don't agree with their DRM policies.

All piracy does is give said company even more excuse to implement more drastic measures.

You aren't understanding why the DRM is in place, it's to control the paying customer, not the stop the pirate. Without piracy, the paying customer still exists and they still want to loan a game to their friends or resell it and that is why there is DRM.

I'm not saying it isn't for the consumer, you're correct. This isn't really about why it's there, it's just about why piracy isn't the right way to go about protesting issues with DRM or other policies the company has.

Well, people are saying that piracy causes more DRM, I say more DRM comes when a company gets the nerve to implement it and uses piracy as a scapegoat, regardless of the real piracy numbers.

Anyway, going to watch some Netflix, check back later or tomorrow. Have fun.

Crono1973:

Erana:

Crono1973:
...are you going to present the other side of the argument?

I am guessing you aren't so allow me. DRM isn't about stopping piracy, it's about gaining control over software even after it's bought (because that's how they make more money). Therefore, people are giving publishers an excuse for DRM. Even without piracy, publishers don't like fair use. They want every person who plays a game to pay for it and full price. They don't want you sharing with friends or even your own children.

Ayup.

People shouldn't pirate games they're boycotting because it makes DRM necessary, its that big businesses use the big, scary piracy numbers as an excuse to control their products post-purchase.
Lessen the piracy statistics to make the justifications for bad DRM weaker.

Piracy numbers are made up anyway so what difference do the real numbers make?

Concrete proof of this. Link me now. Multiple sources.

Antari:
Oh this thread again? ... Really? Is the search bar broken? It was working the last time I checked. I'm fairly sure you know how to use it phlakes.

I did use the search bar, and found one (short) thread that talked about how it hurts developers.

Isn't it interesting you've set it up so that anyone with a direct opposite opinion would have to violate forum rules to express it. They have a word for that.

image

I haven't "set up" anything. The direct opposite opinion is that protesting DRM with piracy works, right? ...I don't recall saying that to be against the rules. In fact I don't recall anything related to this being against the rules. All it says is this-

posts including, advocating, or linking to illegal or adult material are a very quick way to end your time as part of The Escapist community

-and includes piracy as an example. You can say "protesting DRM with piracy works" without advocating piracy.

I don't like when people accuse me of things like that. I don't know how it looks, but those kinds of intentions were never there.

Erana:
Concrete proof of this. Link me now. Multiple sources.

From what I've seen that guy's in the "corporations are evil and hate all consumers" crowd. Or at least has a foot in it.

Erana:

Crono1973:

Erana:

Ayup.

People shouldn't pirate games they're boycotting because it makes DRM necessary, its that big businesses use the big, scary piracy numbers as an excuse to control their products post-purchase.
Lessen the piracy statistics to make the justifications for bad DRM weaker.

Piracy numbers are made up anyway so what difference do the real numbers make?

Concrete proof of this. Link me now. Multiple sources.

Can't do that but how about you tell me where publishers get their numbers from? Remember not so long ago when CDPR claimed that Witcher 2 was pirated a huge amount of times and then the real numbers came out from a legitimate source and Witcher 2 wasn't even in the top 10? That's an example, take it or leave it, I don't care.

Very well reasoned, and I completely agree. Piracy is the reason we have DRM, so more piracy as a protest will not make it go away. It'll just make it worse.

Protest?

I'm pretty sure people mostly pirate to get things for free. That's pretty much the big issue with piracy.

You can't beat free.

Crono1973:

Erana:

Crono1973:

Piracy numbers are made up anyway so what difference do the real numbers make?

Concrete proof of this. Link me now. Multiple sources.

Can't do that but how about you tell me where publishers get their numbers from? Remember not so long ago when CDPR claimed that Witcher 2 was pirated a huge amount of times and then the real numbers came out from a legitimate source and Witcher 2 wasn't even in the top 10? That's an example, take it or leave it, I don't care.

You're supporting an opinion that validates both illegal activities and abusive corporate software, but you can't be bothered to make a case for it?

Here's the quote where the 4.5 million number comes from:
"There are no stats available, but let's make a quick calculation. I was checking regularly the number of concurrent downloads on torrent aggregating sites, and for the first 6-8 weeks there was around 20-30k ppl downloading it at the same time. Let's take 20k as the average and let's take 6 weeks. The game is 14GB, so let's assume that on an average not-too-fast connection it will be 6 hours of download. 6 weeks is 56 days, which equals to 1344 hours; and with 6h of average download time to get the game it would give us 224 downloads, then let's multiply it by 20k simultaneous downloaders.

The result is roughly 4.5 million illegal downloads. This is only an estimation, and I would say that's rather on the optimistic side of things; as of today we have sold over 1M legal copies, so having only 4.5-5 illegal copies for each legal one would be not a bad ratio. The reality is probably way worse."

He stated right there that it was an estimate, and in the middle of an interview, when things were on the spur of the moment. I also have to point out that this paragraph was preceded by this:

"In any case, I am not saying that we have eliminated piracy or there is not piracy in the case of TW2. There is, and TW2 was [illegally] downloaded by tens of thousands of people during the first two weeks after release. Still, DRM does not work and however you would protect it, it will be cracked in no time. Plus, the DRM itself is a pain for your legal gamers - this group of honest people, who decided that your game was worth the 50 USD or Euro and went and bought it. Why would you want to make their lives more difficult?"

The 4.5 million quote was taken out of context and hyped up way out of proportion. Yes, it is a bit dramatic, but in no way did they even begin to claim that it was fact. Not to mention, this was also a CEO whose game had been pirated hundreds of thousands of times.

Now, please, don't counter these earnest arguments with a half-assed "but it doesn't matter!" comment. If you aren't willing to support your argument, you aren't contributing to the discussion, and the whole point of the Escapist is discussion.

Erana:

Crono1973:

Erana:

Concrete proof of this. Link me now. Multiple sources.

Can't do that but how about you tell me where publishers get their numbers from? Remember not so long ago when CDPR claimed that Witcher 2 was pirated a huge amount of times and then the real numbers came out from a legitimate source and Witcher 2 wasn't even in the top 10? That's an example, take it or leave it, I don't care.

You're supporting an opinion that validates both illegal activities and abusive corporate software, but you can't be bothered to make a case for it?

Here's the quote where the 4.5 million number comes from:
"There are no stats available, but let's make a quick calculation. I was checking regularly the number of concurrent downloads on torrent aggregating sites, and for the first 6-8 weeks there was around 20-30k ppl downloading it at the same time. Let's take 20k as the average and let's take 6 weeks. The game is 14GB, so let's assume that on an average not-too-fast connection it will be 6 hours of download. 6 weeks is 56 days, which equals to 1344 hours; and with 6h of average download time to get the game it would give us 224 downloads, then let's multiply it by 20k simultaneous downloaders.

The result is roughly 4.5 million illegal downloads. This is only an estimation, and I would say that's rather on the optimistic side of things; as of today we have sold over 1M legal copies, so having only 4.5-5 illegal copies for each legal one would be not a bad ratio. The reality is probably way worse."

He stated right there that it was an estimate, and in the middle of an interview, when things were on the spur of the moment. I also have to point out that this paragraph was preceded by this:

"In any case, I am not saying that we have eliminated piracy or there is not piracy in the case of TW2. There is, and TW2 was [illegally] downloaded by tens of thousands of people during the first two weeks after release. Still, DRM does not work and however you would protect it, it will be cracked in no time. Plus, the DRM itself is a pain for your legal gamers - this group of honest people, who decided that your game was worth the 50 USD or Euro and went and bought it. Why would you want to make their lives more difficult?"

The 4.5 million quote was taken out of context and hyped up way out of proportion. Yes, it is a bit dramatic, but in no way did they even begin to claim that it was fact. Not to mention, this was also a CEO whose game had been pirated hundreds of thousands of times.

Now, please, don't counter these earnest arguments with a half-assed "but it doesn't matter!" comment. If you aren't willing to support your argument, you aren't contributing to the discussion, and the whole point of the Escapist is discussion.

I don't think anything will change the brainwashed minds in this thread and to be honest, I don't care. I threw my opinion out there and you can either take it or leave it, I have no stake in it.

BTW, it's either very irresponsible to throw that 4.5 million number out there or it's very clever. Either way, they did it and they can't take it back.

Crono1973:

Can't do that but how about you tell me where publishers get their numbers from? Remember not so long ago when CDPR claimed that Witcher 2 was pirated a huge amount of times and then the real numbers came out from a legitimate source and Witcher 2 wasn't even in the top 10? That's an example, take it or leave it, I don't care.

Even if it isn't in "the top ten," that doesn't mean it isn't still a large number and a considerable cost to the publisher. What you're saying is akin to saying the 11th richest guy in the world isn't that rich since he isn't in the top ten. He's still got more than either of us.

Phlakes:
And really, if someone robs your house, what would you do? Put in a security system. That's DRM right there. And if someone keeps robbing your house, you get better security until you can keep them out.

Except that your security system is fucking broken and only interferes with you, your family and your guests. Its like a security system that does not work if you wear a orange shirt. So while you keep upgrading and upgrading and making shit harder on the people who live there until they are tied down on a bed of coals while getting raped by the Dickwolves, the other people (Not robbers as piracy is NOT theft. That is a fact.) can just keep coming by wearing a orange shirt no problem.

Again, think from the other perspective. Let's say (and I have no idea what's accurate here, pulling numbers out of my ass) 500000 people don't buy a game out of protest, and either 1) they pirate it, or 2) they boycott it.

1) Your game just got pirated by 500000 people. You don't for a second think about what they want, you think about protecting your shit. You put more effective DRM to try to cut down on the amount of people pirating the game.

2) 500000 people just didn't buy your game because they don't like your DRM. You think "alright, I'd really like to have those sales back", but of course, you can't make people buy your game.

Except for the fact that that don't happen. What happens is:

Dev/Pubs response.
1) These people are scum who steal from us because they are self entitled and evil.
2) These people are scum who steal from us because they are self entitled and evil as it is clear that they pirated the game instead of just not buying it. I mean who could possibly not want to play CoD 573!

Even if you do not buy it they will always blame poor sales on piracy. Everyone knows this.

I get the distinct sense that the OP is targeted at piracy as a sign of DRM protest exclusively and not "other practices we may disagree with."

I view piracy as a protest against shitcaked reviewers dishing out perfect scores to games that at best don't bring anything new to the table and at worst are a backstep, and to the lack of return or refund policies. When one can't trust reviewers, any game purchase is a $60 gamble.

A game who'se demo can keep you entertained for an hour might still not be worth a day one purchase. It's not until you find yourself blurry eyed at 3am that one realizes that a game is worth buying.

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