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Old 11-29-2006, 09:15 AM   #1
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Default Abandonware now legal?

Interesting news.
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Old 11-29-2006, 10:06 AM   #2
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This news article made me confused, is it just me?

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Old 11-29-2006, 10:47 AM   #3
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I read something about it several days ago. Seems like archiving those games isn't illegal anymore, but distributing them still is.
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Old 11-29-2006, 11:03 AM   #4
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As if the whole world revolves around the US?

Many countries don't have anything as insane as the DMCA in the first place.
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Old 11-29-2006, 11:05 AM   #5
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Good point.
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Old 11-29-2006, 11:40 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by undeaf View Post
As if the whole world revolves around the US?
It... it doesn't?
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Old 11-29-2006, 11:47 AM   #7
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combining that with your avatar makes me laugh
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Old 11-29-2006, 07:11 PM   #8
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Really odd news. It also says though that it has be games for systems that aren't available anymore, and since PC's are still extremely plentiful, I guess it really doesn't matter here.
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Old 11-30-2006, 07:59 AM   #9
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It doesn't mean that you can legally distribute Abandonware or anything. The DMCA was a ruling that makes illiegal to reverse engineer copy protection. It makes, for example, no-CD patches illiegal, or chipping a console: anything that purposely breaks the copy protection placed on digital media.

What this 'exemption' ruling does is say it's okay to break the copy protection if the machine is no longer available, so the games can still be archived or played - for example it's okay for ScummVM to break the protection on the old Monkey Islands games (if we can actually class DOS-based PCs as being obsolete).

This isn't news though: this exemption was passed in 2003 and has simply been renewed again in 2006 - Gamespot didn't do thier research.
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Old 11-30-2006, 09:00 AM   #10
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Yeah, I've read this news item twice and kept thinking "But what does it have to do with abandonware, Gamespot?". Thanks for the additional insight, Deano.

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Old 12-04-2006, 06:55 AM   #11
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Of course, what's the definition of a system being "obsolete" or "no longer available"? There are still a lot of Amiga users, for example.
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Old 12-10-2006, 03:29 AM   #12
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In Sweden it's legal to both reverse engineer and modify a program for the purpose of making it run on your hardware. You are also legally allowed to backup your software and use the backup. Since Copy Protection stop the backup from working, you are thus allowed to reverse engineer and modify the copy protection to make it run on your hardware. Swedish law state nothing against distributing tools for this purpose.

Also Swedish law states that license agreements that deny theese rights make the license agreement void.

Ofcourse, the US have threatened the Swedish Government if they do not comply to their copyright laws, which forced the controversial May 2006 Police Raid against PirateBay. Ofcourse, it took less than a month before the website was up running again, faster than before. Distributing links is not illegal.
The act to strike based on US demands was illegal though.
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