Sign in to follow this  
Guest pagotan

Some questions to PMDG

Recommended Posts

Hi All,The following thread is in my opinion worth reading and more importantly worth some clear explanation from the PMDG development team. Please take some time and read carefully this thread : http://forums.avsim.net/dcboard.php?az=sho...30490&mode=fullFirst, it would be interesting for all flight simmers browsing through this forum to learn from the PMDG Development team whether it is acceptable that remarks made by users are more than often rebuffed by PMDG team members in sometimes rude ways, at the limit of offensive. In that respect I want to refer to several threads where Mr. Robert S. Randazzo made clear that only civil, polite and qualified posts would find their place in this forum. I believe this should apply to everyone posting here including to the PMDG Development team or other writers using the PMDG Logo as a signature. Would Mr. Randazzo be kind enough to give us all here the necessary assurance that his own rules are also applying to his own team. In my humble opinion it often happens that beta testers or developpers feel insulted by questions which are too basic in their eyes or questions which make them feel that they may have overseen something during the testing. This is where the Leaders of the team should come in and give their team members the tools to adjust to such situations (a little bit of psychology would do the trick in most cases).Second, it appears from the same thread that the copyright issue is not well understood by some folks. I personally have a few questions which may serve as a start for Mr Randazzo to shed some light on this delicate and confusing issue.Mr. Vin Scimone, obviously a PMDG team member wrote:quoteYou are in violation of PMDG's End User License Agreementif you distribute PMDG files, modified or otherwise,There is no way for you to verify if anyone making requests of you are actual PMDG customers and even if they were, you are not authorized to distribute PMDG copywrited material.I strongly urge you NOT distribute any modified files!Vin ScimonePMDGunquoteSimple questions based exclusively on the above statement and not taking into account any other parragraph of the EULA.1. From the statement it appears that a violation occurs if a modified file is distributed. Now if a new file created by a third party, which is not a modified file, is distributed as a replacement for a PMDG copyrighted file or as an additional file to be placed in one of the PMDG related folder, would this constitute a violation? Here I am referring to an old legal issue which Microsoft had several years ago when it was ruled that replacement files were not construed as a violation of copyrights.2. The statement seems to imply, as it was directly responding to a genuine initiative from a user, that even if an improvement is created and would serve the sole benefit of PMDG's reputation it is not acceptable as it may reach to non PMDG customers. This point is not clear as to what or who is targeted. Is the aim to prevent developement of third party addons? or is the statement pointing to possible not registered users? In the later case there is no base for a third party to be involved in proprietary issues between the owners of copyrights and unlawful users of their products. Am I correct here?2. Is the publication of modifications in a "how to do it" way is permissible? ie.in the example of the thread mentioned at the top of this message. Obviously a PMDG user found some way to improve the landing conditions of the aircraft by modifying the aircraft.cfg or the .air file (I am not exactly sure which one). Clearly if we follow Mr. Scimone statement the user is not allowed to distribute his modified file(s) but can he post his modifications, how he did it, with what tools and a A to Z modification procedure etc... without violating any copyrights?. 3. Since terminal procedures have been included in the PMDG package, are automatically installed with the same installer which provide the EULA and are located in the PMDG folder do we have to expect full consistancy with Mr. Scimone's statement and consider that any publication of Sids, Stas and Approaches for PMDG's aircraft are a violation of copyrights? There should be some logic here don't you think? Surely you are convinced that your product is a great achievement and you are entitled to such conviction because it is a great technical achievement. However, even the greatest products on the market have small glitches, ways to be improved, outsiders may have ideas which were not obvious the the development teams etc... I think my point here is that a product is never perfect, although it may be matured it always can be improved. Therefore, in addition to your comments on the earlier described two main issues, can you outline your views on how users can contribute in enhancing your product without living in fear breaching some legal issue.Thank youMichael

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Help AVSIM continue to serve you!
Please donate today!

Just my two cents here Michael but based on some of the comments made by visitors to this forum I think the PMDG team have been VERY patient 99% of the time. And I'm usually happy to see them "clean" up the forum of flamebaiting posts. If you or any one else have questions concerning the copyrights of their products I suggest you email a support team member privately. Some believe this is a forum for airing out your opinions and frustrations. Afraid not my friend this is a "support" forum for questions concerning the PMDG aircraft and operating it in the flightsim enviroment.Just my two cents,William

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Michael-One of the most unfortunate aspects of this communication medium is it's anonymity.PMDG is frequently under fire because we require that posters use their real name in this forum. Additionally, we clamp down hard on conversations that are deamed inflammatory or involve PMDG's business practices, monetary issues, legal infringement or are found to be in violation of AVSim's published policies.As one of very few commercial organizations that **actively** participates in the public forum, we have been accused of "arrogance," "disrespect" and "aborrant behavior."It is generally interesting to note that these types of accusations tend to come on the heals of PMDG having to actively moderate individuals in a discussion related to one of the topics I've outlined above- or PMDG withdrawing support for an individual based upon abusive or unnaceptable behavior to a private support venue.There are thousands of users in this forum who come here to learn about PMDG products, and how to operate their software to a greater degree of accuracy than the manuals alone simply allow. We have maintained this forum steadily for nearly five years and have never placed any restriction upon its use other than civility and politeness.For the most part we succeed at this, in spite of the fact that some folks have had their hides a bit chapped by the restrictions that are placed upon their behavior in this part of the forum.I'm sure you can understand that at times it is not easy to impose these behaviors politely- and it is necessary to be at once both stern and uncompromising.Orville Wright once wrote in a letter to his father that, "It is sometimes necessary to be viewed with the sterness of a schoolmaster."I think this sums the situation nicely- as we cannot always handle situations in a manner that will make everyone happy. Such is the unfortunate nature of forum moderation.Additionally PMDG does not make a habit of getting into the grimy he-said-she-said discourse of discussion regarding alleged behaviors or upsets. It serves no purpose other than to distract from the purpose of our work- and the enjoyment of the public forum for most others.The alternative of course is that PMDG run a silent "behind the web page" organization like some other commercial outfits. We have elected not to- as we've found that the vast vast majority of our customers are here for the purpose of seeking help or participating in vigorous discussion.It is for those customers that we participate in this forum.As for the remainder of your questions- I'll answer them in a second post. ;-)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Michael-Addressing purely your technical questions- let me see if I cannot clarify them a bit.(As you read this- there is a single sentence I am going to repeate a few times: "WITHOUT PMDG'S CONSENT." This phrase is an emportant concept from the EULA....)1) Substitution: Your siting the well known case(s) involving Microsoft is incomplete as a single point of reference. The file that PMDG is concerned about included a minor change to the file with approximately 98% of the remainder of the file intact from PMDG's work. There was virtually no new creativity or intellectual exercise involved in the building of the file. The file was then being distributed freely and (the following is important!) WITHOUT PMDG'S CONSENT. This constitutes an "essential transfer of copyrighted material" that has been upheld repeatedly as theft of intellectual property.2) No. You are trying to hard to make an overly complex legal interpretation of something very simple. PMDG does not wish that our copyrighted material be distributed in a manner not consistent with the legal purchase and use of our products.3) (you numbered this 2- but i'm calling it 3) Under certain circumstances he may. He may NOT however- distribute freely a modified file at his own discourse- as this refers you back to #1 above.... PMDG'S CONSENT IS REQUIRED.4) In effect, yes- the terminal procedures fall under this guise as well- meaning that they should not be modified and distributed WITHOUT PMDG'S CONSENT. Obviously our intent with SID/STARS is not nearly as protective as it is with a file such as the inner workings of the airplane- so it would appear that a minor modification of the EULA is in order. Simple enough to do- even simpler to effect.So you ask if there should be logic involved: Yes- there should. It is as follows:Currently PMDG is in the process of taking legal steps in nearly two dozen individual cases of Intellectual Property Theft against individuals distributing the entire airplane via bulletin boards/distribution systems. Some of these are unfortunately well known simulation organizations and others are "small player individuals." However- as these legal cases and investigations are pending, and in order to make a sound legal case against the targeted file distributors- it is abundantly necessary that PMDG demonstrate that we can/will/do take any necessary step to prevent the UNAUTHORIZED DISTRIBUTION OF COPYRIGHTED PMDG MATERIAL. (Note- the following sentence is EXTREMELY important to the entire conversation:)In nearly all cases where we have been contacted by individuals for permission/clarification- we have provided both.It is not PMDG's desire to stifle user modifications or user creativity to enhance our airplane.It is our desire to prevent users from distributing complete pieces of the airplane WITHOUT OUR EXPRESS PERMISSION.The bottom-line in the entire discussion is this: PMDG wants to encourage user interaction with the airplane- but we need to be consulted before users start making files available if they contain PMDG's work. (This rerquirement protects PMDG in the event we need to protect ourselves legally from those who ACTUALLY want to do us economic harm.) There are ways to do that- a simple email normaly is sufficient!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Michael, have you actually read the manuals? Your questions really make me wonder why Robert even bothered to answer apart from a proverbial "RTFM" but he is too much of a class act for that.The PMDG EULA is quite clear in spelling out what parts can be shared for the purposes of user-created liveries. The SID/STAR How-To guide details use and sharing of them.Vin's post was directly aimed at a USER who was posting that they would send files to another user, in direct violation of the EULA. Once one violates the EULA, the TERMINATION clause immediately comes into effect.I am rather surprised that someone with what looks like an AVSIM moderator icon beside their name would even post such a note.Perhaps you need to read the AVSIM Policy yourself as the user offering the software up (obvious violation of section A & :( should have been removed yet here you are defending him and attacking PMDG for defending themselves from people who break the law.http://forums.avsim.net/toc.html <--= Here's the link in case you forgot where it is.Ray

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi,Robert, I would like to thank you for your two messages which bring the clarifications needed. Your messages fully address the concerns expressed and I do share fully your views.I am sorry if I gave the impression of defending non legitimate actions or if the tone of my message gave the impression I was attacking PMDG. This was definitely not the intend. If you fear that this thread may degenerate to something different from its original clarification purpose please fell free to delete it.Maybe I should have mentioned that the root ideas of my questions were linked to a project I and a small group of people are working on which if succesful will, in a not too distant future, give us the possibility to make something like 18,000 Sids, 11,000 Stars and 6,000 apps available to users updated on a 28 days cycle basis. Maybe now one would understand the reasons behind the questions.Be assured that I am not trying to be controversial or to start polemics.Michael

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

>>>>Your questions really make me wonder why Robert even bothered to answer apart from a proverbial "RTFM" but he is too much of a class act for that.<<<

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

>However, what I do not understand is YOUR>need to chastize Michael AFTER the RELEVANT PMDG MEMBER has>patiently and completely answered his questions without ANY>rebuff.....being the CLASS ACT that THEY are.>Agreed,I found Michaels post to be very enlightening and the reply from Ray quite dissapointing.As far as my understanding now goes, Modifications to PMDG material needs PMDG authority if distribution is required. That is if its outside the bounderies of the EULA.If a user designs a panel/.air file or what ever from scratch then they are free to do so as there has been NO breach of copyright. However, it would be courteous to imform PMDG of there intention.Think thats Right.RegardsNigel

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Had Michael posted his second post before I posted, I would not have even posted. His original note and intent appeared to be supportive of software piracy and critique aimed at PMDG's staff for taking issue with someone offering to pirate their software.Michael's follow on post is a different story, but in light of the content of his first post, he should have sent Robert a private email to discuss it instead of doing the "I'm one of the free speech types and I have rights too!" posts about how he felt slighted by PMDG.As someone who seems to be a moderator on AVSIM, you would think they would at least know AVSIM's terms and conditions and not post a note that appears to defend the actions of someone who is clearly violating these, forget about the slight aimed at PMDG for attempting to take an active role in protecting themselves.Whether you like my reply or not does not really concern me. Right now in this forum, we have users posting instructions on how to obtain pirated copies of software. I take issue with that as it affects my price tag when I go out and buy the software. I hope PMDG has very good lawyers and they recoop more in civil damages then they could ever have hoped to obtain through regular sales off each and every one of the morally corrupt people.Ray

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this