CMV: Used Game Sales are Legalized Piracy

Discussion in 'General Gaming Discussion' started by PityOnU, Feb 19, 2019.

  1. PityOnU
    OP

    PityOnU GBAtemp Maniac

    Member
    6
    Jul 5, 2012
    United States
    See title.

    The general argument behind why piracy is a bad thing is that it hurts game developers and publishers. Somebody had to make that game, right? By pirating a game, you are cheating the developers and publishers out of money for their hard work. This can, in turn, potentially lead to studios going under, or less games being made in general. Not the good!

    Well, buying or trading used games has the same effect. Picking up a game from the used section at your local Gamestop sees exactly $0 going back to the original developers/publishers.

    It is also worth pointing out here that with most modern software, it is understood that when you buy something like a disk or a game cartridge, you are not necessarily buying the actual physical item. What you are buying is a license to use the software it contains. I haven't read up on the fine print, but I am skeptical as to whether or not your license to play a game is also transferred along with the disc if it is traded in or sold. If not, there could end up a situation where you still own the license to a game even though someone else is using the disc, making them a... pirate.

    Beyond this, as a general case, with warez distribution, no one is directly profiting off of it. The IP is given away and shared around for free. With used game sales, large corporate entities are actually profiting off of the activity (millions or billions of dollars).
     
    Last edited by PityOnU, Feb 19, 2019
    Ricken and Taleweaver like this.
  2. WD_GASTER2

    WD_GASTER2 I tinker and code.

    Member
    7
    Jun 17, 2018
    France
    i only ask out of genuine curiousity but if we are to assume the premise of the topic is correct (which i disagree for a few reasons but to not to stray from the topic at hand)what is the issue if its legal?
    also your premise that rights are not transfered is incorrect.
    please the the first sale doctrine which is the law in the U.S.
    as for the devs not getting paid, what many fail to see is that the video game industry is much more than developers and publishers, retail partners are still required to remain profitable (and yes even if they need to do used video game sales to do so) in order to have a healthy industry (although i am sure that is now changing due to increasing digital distribution.

    https://www.justice.gov/jm/criminal-resource-manual-1854-copyright-infringement-first-sale-doctrine
     
    Last edited by WD_GASTER2, Feb 19, 2019
  3. PityOnU
    OP

    PityOnU GBAtemp Maniac

    Member
    6
    Jul 5, 2012
    United States
    From your own link:

    Further, the privileges created by the first sale principle do not "extend to any person who has acquired possession of the copy or phonorecord from the copyright owner, by rental, lease, loan, or otherwise, without acquiring ownership of it." See 17 U.S.C. § 109(d). Most computer software is distributed through the use of licensing agreements. Under this distribution system, the copyright holder remains the "owner" of all distributed copies. For this reason, alleged infringers should not be able to establish that any copies of these works have been the subject of a first sale.

    From the (for example) Destiny EULA:

    Bungie grants you the non-exclusive, personal, non-transferable, limited right and license to install and use one copy of this Program solely for your non-commercial use.
     
    DayVeeBoi likes this.
  4. alexander1970

    alexander1970 GBAtemp allows me to be here

    Member
    12
    Nov 8, 2018
    Austria
    Austria
    Hello.:)

    And today garage sales/flea markets/jumble sales are a pirate´s nest. *arrrrrrrrrrr* :D
     
  5. _v3

    _v3 GBAtemp Advanced Fan

    Member
    7
    Oct 12, 2013
    Croatia
    So selling a used car is car theft???
     
  6. PityOnU
    OP

    PityOnU GBAtemp Maniac

    Member
    6
    Jul 5, 2012
    United States
    No, you own the car.

    You do not own a game. You purchase a license to legally play it.
     
    zfreeman likes this.
  7. WD_GASTER2

    WD_GASTER2 I tinker and code.

    Member
    7
    Jun 17, 2018
    France
    i highly doubt gamestop are going to be shut down any time soon though. lol
     
  8. PityOnU
    OP

    PityOnU GBAtemp Maniac

    Member
    6
    Jul 5, 2012
    United States
    Correct.

    I've just always found it to be a bit of a no sequitur that people have been condemned and sued into the ground for distributing ROMs for free online while there are MASSIVE companies built around profiting off of equivalent breaches of EULA.

    Remember when Microsoft said they would make physical sales essentially the same as digital sales with the Xbox One? Remember how pissed off people got about not having a used game market anymore? There shouldn't be one to begin with. It's probably the reason consoles don't get the equivalent of Steam sales.

    If you are buying used games, you're basically subscribing to a private tracker.
     
  9. Just because the game developer doesn't profit doesn't mean that ethically it is the same as pirating.Pirating makes a copy of the original while a used game IS the original.If I sell a physical copy of a videogame,I can no longer play it since I no longer have the physical copy.Any how,I don't really care about piracy.I know legally it's stealing but once you get old and you realize the nature of humans you will quickly see that pirating a videogame is a very minor drop in the bucket.
     
    Mat37 likes this.
  10. BORTZ

    BORTZ The Amazing

    Supervisor
    22
    GBAtemp Patron
    BORTZ is a Patron of GBAtemp and is helping us stay independent!

    Our Patreon
    Dec 2, 2007
    United States
    Pittsburgh
    Ehhhhh I urge you to take a look at GameStop stock prices.
     
    CallmeBerto, morvoran and zfreeman like this.
  11. Ryccardo

    Ryccardo and his tropane alkaloids

    Member
    14
    Feb 13, 2015
    Italy
    Imola
    That confusion is inavoidable: it's what happens when copy-right (literally, having an exclusive on [controlling] the creation of copies), intended like all intellectual property to promote originality through obstructing imitation, is perverted into "I made it and therefore they owe me money", like most probably happened within 10 days after the invention of copyright
     
    DayVeeBoi likes this.
  12. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

    pip Reporter
    23
    Nov 21, 2005
    United Kingdom
    I have never bought this argument and can't even get close to it. If you buy something and don't sign a contract stipulating to its uses (normally only houses on developments and high end cars seeing such a thing, and such a thing being more for limited runs and considered something of a drag/price lowering affair). Indeed I would go so far as to say I find the notion being floated at all a disgusting act contrary to basic principles that underpin societies -- if you have something then you can sell it. Fortunately we seem to have come a long way since the 90s where end user rights could be trampled over (see the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act and the story behind that), though I say that but the downloadable game marketplaces seem a bit slow on giving me options to sell games to friends (why I don't use them and register individual accounts to them to resell individually with attendant games).

    I am still shocked this mindset gained traction -- I saw the very earliest attempts at this on older internet forums and late stage magazines and laughed heartily at them, assuming the idea would never catch on. That I was partially wrong still worries me.
     
  13. JaapDaniels

    JaapDaniels GBAtemp Fan

    Member
    4
    Apr 22, 2012
    Netherlands
    if i only bought the licence, then give me the contract to sell that contract and we're done talkin'.. as i buy any product, it be paper or physical, i own a right to sell or i own a product to sell. it's mine i bought it, i can sell it.
    the thing is you wanna sell a product, but in your mind you never accept when sold it's not yours anymore.
    the argument for legally selling 2nd hand products is that they'll never get forgotten.
     
  14. Necron

    Necron Lurking~

    Member
    6
    Dec 29, 2008
    Chile
    Mi casa
    This is unregulated, however. If you buy a physical game, there are no records [Name] [Last name] bought a game somewhere, nor there is a formal contract established when you buy it. This only works for digital games, where there's a real bond between the purchase and the game you're playing.
     
  15. lucoia

    lucoia GBAtemp Regular

    Member
    3
    Nov 29, 2008
    Italy
    I've talked about this for decades. I won't again. I'm just adding a thought to the debate.

    In our present time we can sell "everything" as a product, and let people pay to access that "everything" and not paying the single products anymore. (Netflix, Spotify, Napster, etc.)

    Cloud gaming has been tested for a while already by Google, Nvidia, Verizon etc. and soon it will become standard.

    Videogames won't be sold as a single product anymore and things are gonna change pretty drastically pretty soon.
     
    Last edited by lucoia, Feb 19, 2019
  16. the_randomizer

    the_randomizer The Temp's official fox whisperer

    Member
    24
    GBAtemp Patron
    the_randomizer is a Patron of GBAtemp and is helping us stay independent!

    Our Patreon
    Apr 29, 2011
    United States
    Dr. Wahwee's castle
    Lol, game developers are just butthurt
     
    Silent_Gunner likes this.
  17. PityOnU
    OP

    PityOnU GBAtemp Maniac

    Member
    6
    Jul 5, 2012
    United States
    The used game disc is a "physical copy" of the original code. It is a copy. The original is on a server somewhere.

    And you are right, selling your old games IS different than piracy. In the former, you are profiting off of your violation of the EULA. So is the used game store. It's basically CloudGate NX or whatever that new Switch warez subscription service is called.

    It is a necessity when the creation of a 1:1 copy of an original item is effectively free.

    "If you buy something and don't sign a contract stipulating to its uses" - Okay, well with games, you do. It's called accepting a EULA. With a lot of software you accept the EULA just by using it. Selling a used game is breaking your legal contract with the content owner (generally the developer/publisher).

    Well, I'm not arguing this, one way or another. I'm arguing that the used games market is just as bad, if not worse than, straight up piracy from the point of view of the current legal system in most countries.

    http://lawofthegame.com/you-dont-own-it/

    There are absolutely records - namely your credit card. And by playing most games, you are establishing a formal contract by accepting a EULA - many of which grant you a NON-TRANSFERABLE license to the software for personal use (see Destiny EULA outtake above).
     
    RHOPKINS13 likes this.
  18. Ryccardo

    Ryccardo and his tropane alkaloids

    Member
    14
    Feb 13, 2015
    Italy
    Imola
    They can write what they want, but a private contract doesn't override the law (and, for not knowing the correct word, "good-will and humane standards agreed on by the court")

    Did you use iTunes in a nuclear power plant, recently? :P
     
    Subtle Demise likes this.
  19. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

    pip Reporter
    23
    Nov 21, 2005
    United Kingdom
    That would depend where you are in the world. EULAs presented after the point of sale are invalid in a lot of places. Secondly I have never seen a game EULA say that*. Thirdly if they thought they had a hope I am sure gamestop et all would have been buried under an avalanche of lawsuits already. Fourthly there was that interesting supreme court case with the printer toner cart re-manufacturing the other month that would speak somewhat to the nature of resale here, as would earlier cases with student version software being resold. Fifthly I forgot to mention last time but I can't get to comparing it to piracy for another reason, that being it exists, it is known to exist, it has long existed, it has no chance of going away in the future by law or otherwise and any dev looking out into the world would know this before starting -- if it is a known and generally accepted variable then why would I have any empathy at all with their "position"?.

    *even if it did then the old dodge we used to do with corporate software would probably come into play -- some fancy software package costing thousands per chair or something similar, company goes bankrupt or is otherwise offered for sale. My accountant friends (and I being proverbial spanner thrower) buy the name for the company and make it a sub company of the company it is going to (making the bankrupt company live on as it were, depending upon what goes they might "hire" out the seats but we are into technicalities at this point) and thus continue to have theoretically non resaleable stuff available all completely legally. I am sure all those nice companies that set up LLCs in Montana for people to have supercars registered to will be happy to do a bit of extra business.
     
  20. Memoir

    Memoir Hi, I'm Cynical!

    Member
    20
    Jun 24, 2007
    United States
    In the Murderbox!
    Used game
    The EULA has a very strict set of applications that allow enforcement. The used gaming market does not fall under this precipice. You can argue the one-off license you get with PC games. Outside of that? The argument isn't valid and holds no water. Effectively, what you're stating, is that the used game market is a hindrance and is borderline piracy in the effect that developers get nothing out of it. The latter is true, the former is not. Otherwise we'd all be held to the full extent of the law and facing possible prison time. This isn't even debatable. Just you trying to spin specific wording to match your unfounded views. It makes zero sense.

    — Posts automatically merged - Please don't double post! —

    How dare they want payment for the work they put out. You're better than this. Really?
     
Quick Reply
Draft saved Draft deleted
Loading...