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EU rules publishers cannot stop you reselling your downloaded games

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Szalona #1 Posted 04 July 2012 - 07:35 AM

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http://www.eurogamer...ownloaded-games

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The Court of Justice of the European Union has ruled that publishers cannot stop you from reselling your downloaded games.
More specifically: "An author of software cannot oppose the resale of his 'used' licences allowing the use of his programs downloaded from the internet."
The Court said the exclusive right of distribution of a copy of a computer program covered by the license is "exhausted on its first sale".
The ruling means that gamers in European Union member states are free to sell their downloaded games, whether they're from Steam, Origin or another digital platform - no matter what End User License Agreement has been signed.
The ruling continues: "Therefore, even if the licence agreement prohibits a further transfer, the rightholder can no longer oppose the resale of that copy."
The ruling suggests that if you've bought a license for a game off your mate, you're within your rights to download it from the publisher's website. "Therefore the new acquirer of the user licence, such as a customer of UsedSoft, may, as a lawful acquirer of the corrected and updated copy of the computer program concerned, download that copy from the copyright holder's website," the Court said.
Whether Valve and EA will make changes to their websites to reflect the ruling remains to be seen.
The ruling in more depth:
"Where the copyright holder makes available to his customer a copy - tangible or intangible - and at the same time concludes, in return form payment of a fee, a licence agreement granting the customer the right to use that copy for an unlimited period, that rightholder sells the copy to the customer and thus exhausts his exclusive distribution right. Such a transaction involves a transfer of the right of ownership of the copy. Therefore, even if the licence prohibits a further transfer, the rightholder can no longer oppose the resale of that copy."
There is one condition, however. If you resell a license to a game you have to make your copy "unusable at the time of resale". Now you will do that, won't you?
"If he continued to use it," the Court explained, "he would infringe the copyright holder's exclusive right of reproduction of his computer program. In contrast to the exclusive right of distribution, the exclusive right of reproduction is not exhausted by the first sale."

Step in account selling (in general) being legal or we are alredy there?

Interesting how MMO publishers (including WG) will react, also interesting how will react Games and Application sellers (Steam, Google Play etc.)

Please refrain from discussing if WoT account selling is morally right or wrong - we are talking here about law - nothing to do with morality ;)

Edit:
in any way I don't to advice someone to sell WoT account - such topics are not allowed on this Forum. this topic is about the court decision and the consequences which will come.



Moving to off-topic section

Ectar

Edited by Ectar, 04 July 2012 - 10:11 AM.


azakow #2 Posted 04 July 2012 - 07:48 AM

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View PostSzalona, on 04 July 2012 - 07:35 AM, said:

Step in account selling being legal or we are alredy there?

Interesting how MMO publishers (including WG) will react.

Please refrain from discussing if WoT account selling is morally right or wrong - we are talking here about law - nothing to do with morality ;)
What relation does this have to "World of Tanks official forum > Game Discussion > Gameplay Discussion" at all?
Use the offtopic section for a discussion on law!

You should know better by now!

Dead_Skin_Mask #3 Posted 04 July 2012 - 07:51 AM

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It is about reselling a game, which has nothing to do with WoT because game is for free :)

Court said nothing about game accounts. Knowing complexity of law I would be very cautious in using this rule to game accounts cause it can be very different case.

Szalona #4 Posted 04 July 2012 - 07:52 AM

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Informative :)

The more people know it, the better.

And if mods will want, they will move it - you should know it by now. Or you are trying to be more saint then Pope?

Edit.
@up
someting being free - doesn't mean that when you got it, you can't sell it.
however indeed it is interesting, if it also grants right to sell MMO account - this is something I for sure don't know and cannot advice.
in any way I don't to advice someone to sell WoT account - such topics are not allowed on this Forum. this topic is about the court decision and the consequences which will come.

Edited by Szalona, 04 July 2012 - 07:55 AM.


PRO_MEMBER #5 Posted 04 July 2012 - 07:55 AM

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View PostSzalona, on 04 July 2012 - 07:35 AM, said:

http://www.eurogamer...ownloaded-games



Step in account selling being legal or we are alredy there?

Interesting how MMO publishers (including WG) will react.

Please refrain from discussing if WoT account selling is morally right or wrong - we are talking here about law - nothing to do with morality ;)

account selling is a different thing.

Treborn #6 Posted 04 July 2012 - 08:00 AM

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You have the right to resell the game you downloaded and you payed lets say 10 euros for it. You`re selling the licence, the serial number. Its similar to buying a car. Afterwards you can sell it as second hand.

Accounts are a different thing. Since you dont really own them, you only have the privilege to play on WG servers i doubt you can sell them.

Alighierian #7 Posted 04 July 2012 - 08:02 AM

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View Postarbenowskee, on 04 July 2012 - 07:55 AM, said:

account selling is a different thing.

if the new account holder would receive full control and authority (email changed, PW changed) so the seller wouldn't be able to access it again, is it still something different?

xy876 #8 Posted 04 July 2012 - 08:03 AM

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View PostSzalona, on 04 July 2012 - 07:52 AM, said:

someting being free - doesn't mean that when you got it, you can't sell it.

In terms of free software, the author can put it in the license that the software cannot be distributed for money.

Player accounts are a different area though.

badw0lf #9 Posted 04 July 2012 - 08:04 AM

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This discussion sounds a lot like the one about card counting in casinos. Although it's technically legal, if a casino catches you doing that, it has a right to ban you from the establishment, and since it's a privately owned institution, they can choose who they let in. The same can be said about MMO publishers, if they say you are not allowed to sell your account in the EULA ( the thing  you check "i agree" the first time you run the game), then you acknowledge that you understand your account can be locked indefinitely if you attempt to sell it.

Szalona #10 Posted 04 July 2012 - 08:05 AM

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View PostTreborn, on 04 July 2012 - 08:00 AM, said:

You have the right to resell the game you downloaded and you payed lets say 10 euros for it. You`re selling the licence, the serial number. Its similar to buying a car. Afterwards you can sell it as second hand.

Accounts are a different thing. Since you dont really own them, you only have the privilege to play on WG servers i doubt you can sell them.
In WoT I'm not sure.

However for example World of Warcraft or Diablo III - I bought them with serial number, I have boxes etc. - so seems I can sell them?

bkrist #11 Posted 04 July 2012 - 08:10 AM

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so basicaly its like: "if i buy a car i can sell it, and if i buy and download a game i can sell that too"

Treborn #12 Posted 04 July 2012 - 08:14 AM

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View PostSzalona, on 04 July 2012 - 08:05 AM, said:

In WoT I'm not sure.

However for example World of Warcraft or Diablo III - I bought them with serial number, I have boxes etc. - so seems I can sell them?

I think you can sell the accounts of WoW and DiabloII since they are connected to those serial numbers. But in WoT I doubt it, Im glad people cannot buy accounts for WoT, I dont want to see eBay players with tier X ruining my gameplay.

Dead_Skin_Mask #13 Posted 04 July 2012 - 08:16 AM

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View PostAlighierian, on 04 July 2012 - 08:02 AM, said:

if the new account holder would receive full control and authority (email changed, PW changed) so the seller wouldn't be able to access it again, is it still something different?

Yes, account is not game. Court rule is about reselling a software.

Listy #14 Posted 04 July 2012 - 08:18 AM

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View Postbkrist, on 04 July 2012 - 08:10 AM, said:

so basicaly its like: "if i buy a car i can sell it, and if i buy and download a game i can sell that too"


View PostDead_Skin_Mask, on 04 July 2012 - 08:16 AM, said:

Yes, account is not game. Court rule is about reselling a software.


So the interesting thing is: Can you sell a game that is a Beta? You downloaded it, so technically you could sell it...
Of course you'd need an account so flogging disks with the installation EXE would be an interesting legal battle, as they'd get the game (as advertised) but not be able to access the game.

Edited by Listy, 04 July 2012 - 08:18 AM.


Dead_Skin_Mask #15 Posted 04 July 2012 - 08:19 AM

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View PostSzalona, on 04 July 2012 - 07:52 AM, said:

someting being free - doesn't mean that when you got it, you can't sell it.
When something is for free, no one will pay for it :)

Dead_Skin_Mask #16 Posted 04 July 2012 - 08:27 AM

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View PostListy, on 04 July 2012 - 08:18 AM, said:

So the interesting thing is: Can you sell a game that is a Beta? You downloaded it, so technically you could sell it...
Of course you'd need an account so flogging disks with the installation EXE would be an interesting legal battle, as they'd get the game (as advertised) but not be able to access the game.

It is again different case. This time you are not player/customer. You are tester/cooperator. So the legal bind between you and software producer is different. Such closed beta game is not in sale and selling software of closed beta game is rather against non-disclosure agreement.

Edited by Dead_Skin_Mask, 04 July 2012 - 08:51 AM.


Chillius #17 Posted 04 July 2012 - 08:36 AM

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Every account is essentially the serial of that 'copy' of WOT. Moreover, as soon as you purchase gold, you are buying extra feautures. So if you spend some real money on your account, then I think your account should be covered by this law.
Interesting topic. A year ago, they wanted to put an extra charge on blank CD/DVDs, which were to be distributed for copyrights (since you will most likely be copying some copyrighted content - that was the reasoning). It did not pass.

anonym_kL7qtn3e52MB #18 Posted 04 July 2012 - 08:41 AM

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How about premium tanks? I paid for those?



Most important point is that a "EULA" doesn't mean anything anymore. Even if you signed it 2x...
Re-sale is covered in most "EULA" and because there are contrdicting (towards law) points in there, the whole lisence is void/null.

Another interesting issue comes up with this ruling. Can I modify stuff (even though EULA says I can't)???
Am I allowed to look up "hidden stats" in software that I bought this way?

etc. etc.


Much more important than being alllowed to re-sell your "digital" stuff.

Dead_Skin_Mask #19 Posted 04 July 2012 - 08:53 AM

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View PostChillius, on 04 July 2012 - 08:36 AM, said:

Every account is essentially the serial of that 'copy' of WOT.

No. I played the same account on a few computers using a few different copies of client. Do not confuse copy of software with player account. At least in case of WoT this are two different things.

Dead_Skin_Mask #20 Posted 04 July 2012 - 09:08 AM

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View PostCostarring, on 04 July 2012 - 08:41 AM, said:

How about premium tanks? I paid for those?

Most important point is that a "EULA" doesn't mean anything anymore. Even if you signed it 2x...
Re-sale is covered in most "EULA" and because there are contrdicting (towards law) points in there, the whole lisence is void/null.

Another interesting issue comes up with this ruling. Can I modify stuff (even though EULA says I can't)???
Am I allowed to look up "hidden stats" in software that I bought this way?

etc. etc.

Much more important than being alllowed to re-sell your "digital" stuff.

Yes. EULA is not a law. It is an agreement between player and WG, so it can be in some points against some countries laws (or some points of this agreement can be declared illegal by court or some offices responsible for customer protection). As far as I know there is no law forbidding accounts selling. It is forbidden only in EULA. So seller/buyer will not be punished by country but can be punished by game developer, who can block an account. Then - as in many other customer cases - player can go to court. There he can win or lose, depends from country, law, court and so on.




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