p2p Fake Files Initiative

Discussion in 'Indie Business' started by cliffski, Feb 18, 2006.

  1. Savant

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    Beautiful. Make sure you slam the door on the way out for added effect.
     
  2. princec

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    If I do Cliff a special build I can track the BitTorrent downloads of Ultratron... hmm...

    Cas :)
     
  3. cliffski

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    This was quite clearly stated at the start. It seems almost every post outside the private forum now degenerates into rudeness. It's now at the point where I'm wary of pinting friends to this forum as a recommended resource.
    maybe we should all adopt a policy of not posting at all unless there is something helpful to contribute.
     
  4. Gilzu

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    Erm... RTLM! (Read The Lovely Manual... didn't felt like swaring :eek: )

     
  5. Savant

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    It also opens the topic up to fresh eyes and new perspectives. Reclusing into the private forum means you'll be picking the same brains over and over again.

    Someone disagreeing with your point of view isn't necessarily being rude. Often times, if you keep an open mind, it's very useful.

    This sort of reminds me of the people who get all uppity whenever someone says something bad about a new game. Dissenting opinions are a sign that something is wrong. If we stick to a policy of mandatory back slapping and empty kudos we're never going to grow in knowledge.
     
  6. digriz

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    Either way, if Cliffski could post the results when he's got some good numbers to compare against i'd like to see them.

    Sadly, i don't have access to the private forums so bumping this thread with said results in a few weeks would be good. :)
     
  7. wazoo

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    I agree @Savant.

    Anyways getting some kind of data from Cliffski would be a great tool and decision helper for going this route of protecting your game.

    To me it feels a bit on the useless side as there are so many channels of torrent/p2p distribution out there. It feels like a lot of "work" (ie. setting up fake files/fake sites/fake pages, etc)..

    I know Cliffski's only trying to protect his IP and his hit games. (Good luck man!)

    Like I said, some real data would be great.

    I haven't decided upon a way to "register" my game yet, as I'm still not that far along, but I suspect we struggle with DRM just as much as EA or any other AAA company and we'll have to make our own decisions as to whether or not we want to "bother" with it.
     
  8. soniCron

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    Grab Shareaza and realize that you could have set up the fake file sharing in the time it took you to write that post! ;) Wouldn't one converted sale over time be worth it? :)
     
  9. StGabriel

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    CITOKATE: Criticism is the Only Known Antidote to Error. (David Brin)
     
  10. wazoo

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    Definitely @soniCron.

    But I do have to ask...if they're even looking for my game on a p2p app to begin with....would they (ever) buy a legit copy anyways?

    I guess the answer is "no" but do you mention this anywhere in a blog or something on your product's website? I'm just thinking that potential customers (let's say) who do wanna try it out via p2p first then buy your product (let's say), would there be any negative backlash due to all your copies over p2p being "fake"??

    I mean let's say someone seeds your fake game chock full of viruses and spyware. Would that potential customer who grabs this version ever visit your site again? The word also might get out, and could be slanted such that your "authentic" game is also loaded with the spyware..(ie. people would be confused between versions of the game).

    I don't claim to have the answers and know everything (or anything), I'm just saying that it's potentially opening a Pandora's Box that you should at least have responses to..(no, it's not a challenge. Take that as a rhetorical question).
     
  11. GBGames

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    I guess I'm just confused how someone downloading what he must obviously think is the full version for free means that "it's working". What's working? If your intent is to annoy someone who would pirate the game, then perhaps. If your intent is to prevent someone from pirating your game OR to turn a potential pirate into a customer, you're going to need more proof than "someone is downloading it".

    My saying so isn't a post arguing that you can't do it or that it is futile. It's just questioning the logic behind the excitement.
     
  12. digriz

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    I refer you to this long thread here about code signing. Having you installers and exe's signed wouldn't stop people downloading the pandoras box version of your game, but at least you can tell people that if it isn't code signed by you, it isn't a valid copy of the game, hence the unsigned version is potentially unsafe. If they chose to install it, it's their own fault.
     
  13. cliffski

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    if people want to check out my game, there is a perfectly good demo available, getting a pirate copy has no excuse. I agree with what Fost says, we have a duty to make it as awkward as possible to get a free game from an illegal source. The ONLY reason people dont routinely get software from p2p is that there is a good chance of getting a virus, a fake file, an out of date copy, or some spyware. We are contributing directly to the frustration people experience when trying to steal someones work. Even if I didnt care about software piracy, I still would have bought poser, because god knows what I'd get if I tried to warez it.
    Its like saying that a burglar alarm or a locked door wont keep out burglars. They wont stop the really determined burglar, but they sure do help prevent opportunistic crime. Its the same with p2p. If people know that using emule is as easy as using amazon, who is going to buy the game? If they know that using emule is an exercise in frustration, then yes that *does* tilt people towards getting a legit copy.
    I find it astounding that the major effort, time and energy required in this whole exericse is arguing with other indie gamers over whether it should be done, although it tends to be people who don't actually have games on sale yet that are the most pessimistic. Lets have a little optimism shall we?
     
  14. Savant

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    I tried that with a wiki. Didn't take. :p
     
  15. digriz

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    On a slightly different tac; but relevant, i think.

    Has anyone ever thought to put a required activation code in for the Trial version of their games?

    ie. someone downloads it from your site, they have to enter an email address to be sent a trial activation code. Once they receive the trial code, it then activates in trial mode only.

    Then if someone uploads it to a p2p somewhere with a trial code, you can find out quite easily who it was.

    Agreed it doesn't solve the issue of piracy and it doesn't put people off downloading from these places but it might help deter the people who upload them, knowing that you have information about who it is.

    I'm not sure if this is a dumb idea really, but i was curious to know if anyone had tried this.
     
    #35 digriz, Feb 23, 2006
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2006
  16. soniCron

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    Why not stuff the fake ZIPs you're distributing with this video? Surely it must thwart piracy?
     
  17. Davaris

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    Personally I don't think P2P will have much of an effect on casual games sales. I had a go at using Emule recently and found it complicated and then there is the virus/trojan consideration. In the end I decided I couldn't be bothered with it. Most people out there barely know how to turn on a computer and some of them can't even do that. If it was easy to use, (ie install it and start searching for files right away in the one place) then I'd be worried.

    Cliffski: I see where you're coming from with the "make it harder to steal games idea" though, because if its easier to steal a game than buy it, most people will steal it.
     
  18. soniCron

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    Why does everyone keep bringing up this virus thing? In all my days, I've never known one soul who contracted a virus from warez and cracks. Sure, there are a bunch of fake files laced with malicious code, but anyone worth their salt can pick these out. (42 differently named files with the exact same size of 104KB? *alarms sound*) Frankly, I think the virus excuse is a non-issue propogated by ignorance.
     
  19. Davaris

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    I've had several users ask for another download link because they had to format their harddrives to get rid of a virus. :)
     
  20. soniCron

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    A virus from P2P file sharing?
     

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