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Posts with tag infringement

Interest group speaks up against Blizzard on Glider case

Blizzard's lawsuit against the Glider folks (who were trying to sell a bot that was used to play the game while /afk), has a new wrinkle in it. According to PC Gamer, an interest group called Public Knowledge (they're funded by a variety of creative arts foundations) has filed a brief in the case accusing Blizzard of overstepping their rights under copyright law. In the brief, and an accompanying blog post, they say that while what Glider is doing in-game may be wrong, it isn't actually copyright infringement, because the Glider software doesn't actually infringe on any copyrights that Blizzard holds. And they're worried that if Blizzard wins this case, it could set a precedent strongly in favor of copyright holders, to the point where any misuse of the software at all, from using bots to using the wrong name, would be interpreted instead as copyright infringement.

They kind of have a point here -- Blizzard just used all the tools they had in this case to try and send a clear message to anyone out there trying to sell automation software that what they were doing would get them in trouble, and they may have thrown copyright infringement on the menu when it didn't really belong. For Blizzard's part, they claim that making a copy in RAM of the game's information constitutes copyright infringement, but again, that's only because Glider is misusing those RAM files -- every user everywhere needs to copy parts of the game into RAM in order to run it.

At any rate, Public Knowledge has filed their brief and had their voices heard. It's up to the judges in this case to decide what comes out of it.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, News items

Chinese electronics company sues Blizzard over fonts

An electronics company in Beijing has sued Blizzard, claiming that they allegedly used five copyrighted fonts in World of Warcraft. Founder Electronics wants 100 million yuan for the alleged infringement, which is apparently the largest amount ever asked for by a Chinese company in a copyright case (Founder claims the loss cost them 1 billion yuan). The case is sitting in front of the Beijing High People's Court, and the9, which is the Chinese company that runs WoW there, is considering their options.

I'm assuming that means the9's Chinese version of WoW, which would mean the fonts themselves are for Chinese characters, so there's probably no fonts that English-speaking users would recognize ingame. However, Founder is apparently known for creating some of the most popular fonts in China, so the odds that someone at the9 used one of them (or at the very least one that looked like one of them) are probably pretty good (the picture on this post is from a Founder event, not a Blizzard event, so the obvious use of the Founder font there doesn't count). Of course it's up to the High Court to decide whether the infringement actually took place or not-- no word on how long the judgment will take.

Filed under: Odds and ends, Blizzard, News items, Add-Ons

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