Thursday, October 02, 2008

Trying to Send Them to the Spore House

The blog Game Politics has been covering user revolts related to the game Spore among buyers unhappy with stealth DRM software that places restrictions on the number of machines that can play the game, and often creates problems even when only one machine is running the software at one time. Customers have also been giving the game negative reviews on Amazon in a user-generated attempt at consumer consciousness-raising. Now lawyers have launched a class action lawsuit against the company based on the fact that the company didn't even disclose specifics on its click-through EULA.

You can read the fine print of the lawsuit here. The rhetoric that the plaintiffs deploy in this document often uses the company's own promotional language against it to show how the game's "personal universe" is actually a God game of a different kind. They concede that "consumers are told that the game uses access control and copyright technology," but point out that "consumers are not told that this technology is actually an entirely separate, stand-alone program."

(For those who are mystified by the acronyms in this posting, Wikipedia has relatively good definitions of DRM and EULA.)

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