Atari/majesco/Mistic Software violate GPL by stealing ScummVM

Discussion in 'User Submitted News' started by zidane_genome, Jun 24, 2009.

  1. zidane_genome
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    zidane_genome My sword has a +2 bleeding... wanna test it out?

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    All the details can be found here :

    http://sev-notes.blogspot.com/2009/06/gpl-...violations.html

    Here's the basic details

    * Apparently Atari contracted porting work to their long time partner, Majesco Entertainment.
    * Majesco Entertainment in turn subcontracted the work to Mistic Software, a Canadian-based game shop
    * Mistic Software has its development office in Chernigov, Ukraine, locally presented as Mistic Soft LLC who did the actual work


    The GPL violation was found by a couple of fans in the Freddy Fish game (in 0.9.0, there is a bug, a gfx glitch in the beginning of the game). Once the ScummVM team got 2 reports, they dumped the game (via Homebrew Channel, and some other homebrew software), looked in the binarys, and found their code, including the full credits to the ScummVM team, with several place holders for the Mistic Team.

    The facts were:


    * There is a GPL violation (their denial has to be proven in a court, strings in executables and the bug above clearly show it)
    * Atari could not release source codes because of Nintendo NDA
    * Atari could not put GPL clause because of Nintendo NDA
    * Atari could not "buy out" ScummVM from us
    * There is no possibility to double license ScummVM, at least SCUMM engine
    * ScummVM team does not need any money as a "bribe to keep silent"

    All copies of the following games have a limited time left to be sold. At that point, all copies must be bought back by Atari, and destroyed. If any copies are sold after the time limit expires, Atari faces fines. These fines are massive.

    Game List :

    Pajama Sam
    Freddi Fish
    SPY Fox

    and any versions of them released world wide.

    What does this mean for GameStop and similar stores that take trade ins? Can Atari be sued for games that are REsold that include this GPL violation? Your thought and opinions?
     


  2. Celice

    Celice GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

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    So this is essentially theft of emulation to create a profit on another's part, or am I reading it wrong?
     
  3. DSGamer64

    DSGamer64 Canadian, Eh?

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    They won't get much out of games like that though profit wise if they seek money for it.
     
  4. kjean

    kjean GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    These games are for kids. And it means it's profit itself.
     
  5. jesterscourt

    jesterscourt Not Brad.

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    I'll be the first to admit I don't fully understand the whole depth of the GPL agreements, however, I can on a basic level get the gist that what Atari did was inherently wrong, or at the very least, ignorant/lax QA.
     
  6. dinofan01

    dinofan01 Misses the old days...

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    Well apparently its already settled.

    Source
     
  7. AppleJuice

    AppleJuice GBAtemp Regular

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    I can't believe they settled already, that's pretty lame.
     
  8. cory1492

    cory1492 GBAtemp Maniac

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    Yet another good reason to cheer on hacking of "security" on consoles, I mean who is checking for this sort of thing on XBLA and PSN titles let alone in their full games?

    The fact they settled for what they did is a good thing - it most likely means the lawyers they consulted had their hands in someone else's pockets already and gave straight up advice.
     
  9. s0nicfreak

    s0nicfreak Member

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    Oh man that's hilarious
     
  10. saxamo

    saxamo Spaaaaace!

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    And that, my friends, is why GPL, and creative commons is becoming increasingly important in days of late.
     
  11. subanark

    subanark GBAtemp Regular

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    You can't blame everything on Atari. They contracted this creation of this game to another company, and the use of the ScummVM was a misunderstanding of the GLP. Atari was willing to comply with the GLP by giving the source of the modifications they made, but the Nintendo NDA agreement prohibited that (even if it didn't it would be questionable to have GPL code link with their API).
     
  12. funem

    funem Retro Powered..

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    Oh the irony, carping on about pirating and theft and then they go do the same thing themselves... wonder how much press coverage this will get considering how well the Atari name is know, I know they didnt code it but there name is on the box. Also I wonder if The Staff of the Kings game which also has a playable version of Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis uses any of the code to emulate it......

     
     
  13. ften

    ften GBAtemp Regular

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    From the Site;
    "sev said...
    @haf: As we know today, Indy port is a proper one. I.e. it is a standard LucasArts-brand SPUTM."

    -FTen
     
  14. s0nicfreak

    s0nicfreak Member

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    The Company Formerly Known as Infogrames (they're not Atari, they just bought the Atari name, and I refuse to call them Atari) contracted it to a company who subcontracted it to a company that would do something like this. You lay down with dogs, you get up with fleas. Then their lawyers acted like douches about it. After they realized the ScummVM guys didn't want money, they calmed down, and only THEN looked into Nintendo's agreement... that's the sort of thing you should look into BEFORE publishing wii games.
     
  15. luisedgarf

    luisedgarf Member

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    When you're dealing with Western VG companies, this is the LAST thing they do...
     
  16. TeenDev

    TeenDev GBAtemp's Original Hipster

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    Since they are violating GPL, I think that gives us right to violate their license.
     
  17. zidane_genome
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    zidane_genome My sword has a +2 bleeding... wanna test it out?

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    If you wanna download Freddy the Fish, go right ahead man... go right ahead!
     
  18. TeenDev

    TeenDev GBAtemp's Original Hipster

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    I'd rather look in the basement for my old PC-CDs. I did enjoy Freddi Fish though, as well as Spy Fox.
     
  19. Technik

    Technik GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    So atari unofficially used an emulator someone made in 3 wii games?
     
  20. kosheh

    kosheh GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    I wouldn't say ScummVM is an emulator, IIRC ScummVM is more like an engine for point-and-click games. It's kind of like MUGEN is to fighters and RPG Maker to RPGs.

    It allows amateur game creators to create a point & click adventure without having to code the game engine from the ground up.

    And it's a whole team of people, who are working open-source and for nonprofit. When you're selling a commercial game with the intention to make a profit and you're using nonprofit open-source code



    Something doesn't quite add up.