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ryanbatcund

Products lose activation with BIOS changes

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If it's not worth purchasing, what on earth makes it worth stealing?

 

Oh, and this discussion... I'll state that the product I made that had the highest piracy rate... had no real copy protection. It didn't really sell... but it got stolen at an astounding rate, within 24 hours of it's release and yes it was really easy to catch the thieves and know how many there were.

 

The next product I made... 1.5 years before it was successfully stolen and I watched them repeatedly try to do it.

 

What the products were is irrelevant and I won't be saying. I just know that there's a ton of B.S. in this thread from individuals who have no 'skin in the game'. It's really easy to talk about what someone should do with their income source, as long as it's not your income source.

 

If you think you know how to 'win' this... give me my payment up front, I'll give you a high quality FS addon with zero copy protection. You let me know when you've started to actually make a profit with it. Any takers??


Ed Wilson

Mindstar Aviation
My Playland - I69

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Luke, I'm couching no terms and am not the least reticent about calling a spade a spade if it's applicable.

I do not believe that you have an personal IP interest at stake and you've failed to state so if you do.

 

At this point I'm taking you at your word that you, and those you cite,  could care less about IP theft and in fact embrace it,  as you and they, whoever they are, are insulated in some way.

 

I could not care less about your employer or their business model. In my humble opinion, the previous statement still applies as follows....

 

I highly doubt that you have anything of value at stake in terms of IP interest or you would not readily argue for turning a "blind eye" towards theft.

Whether the interest is "moral" or "economic" has a huge impact on the owner/producer of IP.

We maintain that on the basis of both moral and economic objections, theft is not acceptable practice in polite society or even in not so polite society.


Best Regards,

Ron Hamilton ASEL

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This is really annoying to me.  Again, the LEGAL paying customer is the one hurt by DRM....  *sigh*

 

I had some issues with my PC in the last few months which ended up in a few BIOS resets and or changes.

 

Some of my FSX addons don't like this and ask me to reactivate their products.  I'm not going to name names but there are a few different companies which do this.

 

Did I mention it's annoying?  One company I apparently have to get a new code because I can't even use their addon.  With another company all I had to do was re-enter my information and it worked.

 

Does this bother anyone else?  I think BIOS changes /etc shouldn't be a factor because the people who buy FSX addons usually are power users and make changes to their PC's or upgrade components frequently.

Yes, I don't like it. Yes it's a PIA but I understand why they do it. An unfortunate consequence of an ever changing environment. The internet and piracy. Get used to it.

 

Jon

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I realize that this is a very controversial topic with strong opinions on both sides.  I think the underlying theme is really more about what can be done to protect the interests of developers without having to put paying customers through, what they consider, undue hardship in using the products they purchase.  I think it's fair to say that no one in this conversation advocates piracy in any form, and that we all share a common interest in the issue of eliminating the practice.  This conversation can be beneficial if everyone looks at it as we're all on the same team here.  Unfortunately, it seems to be getting a little heated and that's rather counterproductive.  I really hate locking threads, but that's what will happen if it keeps going down the path it's on, so everyone try to take a deep breath and count to 10 before you push the post button.  :biggrin:

Cheers,

Jeff


"For once you have tasted flight you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards, for there you have been and there you will long to return."

-Leonardo da Vinci  (some experts question the attribution, but I'll go with it for now.) 

 

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Jeff,

 

I think the problem is those of us who are actually the ones who suffer from piracy get told it's our fault (product sucks!), we're not really losing anything (it doesn't exist man!), we're just not thinking it through (no protection, really low price!).

 

Not very constructive dialog... is it?

 

As I've stated above... if someone thinks they know how to do this... I'll give them a flat cost for a quality addon... after payment I will deliver said addon with NO PROTECTION... and then they get to tell the rest of us when they've started to actually make a profit.

 

So far... no one's even come close to that one. LOL


Ed Wilson

Mindstar Aviation
My Playland - I69

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I think the problem is those of us who are actually the ones who suffer from piracy get told it's our fault (product sucks!), we're not really losing anything (it doesn't exist man!), we're just not thinking it through (no protection, really low price!).

 

Look on the bright side, you haven't been accused of mental illness yet. :)

 

Cheers!

 

Luke


 

 


I do not believe that you have an personal IP interest at stake and you've failed to state so if you do.

 

I don't understand, Ron. My employer (and therefore I) spends and receives millions of dollars a year writing software and providing value on top of data. We provide that to our customers. I have a great financial interest in the intellectual property my employer owns and I help create.

 

What you're saying, if I understand it, is that because I do not agree with you you do not believe that I have the same interests or the same value at stake. That's a very limited viewpoint - in essence you cannot understand how someone with similar interests can come to a different conclusion than yourself.

 

Quite honestly this thread is very disappointing. I've been accused of justifying theft. I've been accused of mental illness. I've been accused of embracing theft. No one, absolutely no one, has been able to give me the common courtesy of explaining what errors of logic I've made. No one has been able to answer the question I've asked and explain why they disagree with me. That would have been an interesting conversation and one I would approach with interest and relish. Instead there are a lot of small proprietors who would prefer a dollar less in an undeserving pocket (a pirate's) than two dollars more in a deserving one (their own).

 

If you want to validate my interest in the subject I am happy to do so privately. If your goal is an echo chamber then you can sit back and wonder why everyone seems to be making money except niche FS developers.

 

Cheers!

 

Luke


Luke Kolin

I make simFDR, the most advanced flight data recorder for FSX, Prepar3D and X-Plane.

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Luke, you cite companies and I assume yourself, and appear to actually think IP theft is a non issue whether moral or economic as long as you are in a shielded position from its effects.

 

I stated this is not a personal attack and it still isn't. I do still hold the opinion that you have no personal IP interest to protect and can apparently well afford the negative consequences of IP theft.

 

For me personally, that argument appears to be weak on both a moral and an economic front.

 

Actually I would like a private justification for such arguments if you are so inclined.


Best Regards,

Ron Hamilton ASEL

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Jeff,

 

I think the problem is those of us who are actually the ones who suffer from piracy get told it's our fault (product sucks!), we're not really losing anything (it doesn't exist man!), we're just not thinking it through (no protection, really low price!).

 

Not very constructive dialog... is it?

 

As I've stated above... if someone thinks they know how to do this... I'll give them a flat cost for a quality addon... after payment I will deliver said addon with NO PROTECTION... and then they get to tell the rest of us when they've started to actually make a profit.

 

So far... no one's even come close to that one. LOL

I understand, Ed.  And I see where it can appear as a personal attack to guys like you who do "have skin in the game."   I think the flip side of that coin, though, is that legit customers feel that they're unfairly penalized for a piracy problem that isn't their fault either.  I look at it as it's a lot like going through airport security.  We are all forced to go through a rather invasive process to get on a plane nowadays, and these measures were not put into effect because of anything we've ever done wrong, but we accept it as the reality of commercial flying because we all know that there are some bad people out there who would choose to exploit any lapse in security to achieve their nefarious goals.  That's an extreme analogy, but the point I'm getting at is that your legit customers are expressing their frustration over how the current measures that are used to combat piracy negatively impact their experience, and I think they want to be involved in the discussion, as end users of the product, in finding a method that would both protect the interests of the developer while at the same time allowing them unfettered access to the add-ons they've legally purchased.  I know you feel that some are attacking you as the problem and I agree that's unfair, but at the same time, I'm sure many of them feel that they are being unfairly treated as part of the problem, as well.  Given that all the protection schemes in use today have had marginal impact on combating piracy, I think involving the legitimate customer base in the conversation and, maybe, together, finding a more effective process isn't all that bad a course to pursue, and it's something that is certainly in everyones best interest if this hobby is going to continue to thrive.

 

All the Best,

Jeff


"For once you have tasted flight you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards, for there you have been and there you will long to return."

-Leonardo da Vinci  (some experts question the attribution, but I'll go with it for now.) 

 

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Jeff, the OP has already stated that our company and apparently others who use similar methods are not part of legit customers complaint sheet.

 

At the beginning we stated that these threads are generally moot because these practices exist and will continue by all parties when the arguments whether pro or con cease.

 

Human nature and moral and economic interests require it. :rolleyes:


Best Regards,

Ron Hamilton ASEL

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Personally, Ron, I'm one of your customers that have never had an issue with you or the planes I bought from you, so I really have no idea what methods you employ to guard against the less savory individuals in our hobby.  My response to Ed was intended more in general terms as it seemed that's where the conversation was headed, and my remarks weren't necessarily directed  toward any one developer specifically.  No offense intended and, I hope, none taken.

Cheers!!


"For once you have tasted flight you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards, for there you have been and there you will long to return."

-Leonardo da Vinci  (some experts question the attribution, but I'll go with it for now.) 

 

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If you've ever encountered a community that has a lot of pirates in it, you'll have discovered that there are a lot of people who take great pride in never having paid for any software.  They'll jump through any hoops to keep their record unbroken.  These people would not be customers no matter what you did.  Also, pirates tend to download everything, even if they never really look at it.  It may be used for barter later, or not, it doesn't matter to them.


I for one, am in a community which is populated with at least 70% pirates. I've took a lot of flak from them, for being vocal about how piracy affects the community and such, and they even go as low as patronising anyone who is known to have bought a product legally. They don't really think it through, and as Rob has said earlier, pirates aren't really the sharpest tools in the shed, if you try and talk to them about things like piracy, you're better off teaching a puppy how to fly an F-16.  

Thoriq Kamaruszaman, Potato Flier :Cuppa:

READ THE MANUALS. 

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This is really annoying to me.  Again, the LEGAL paying customer is the one hurt by DRM....  *sigh*

 

I had some issues with my PC in the last few months which ended up in a few BIOS resets and or changes.

 

Some of my FSX addons don't like this and ask me to reactivate their products.  I'm not going to name names but there are a few different companies which do this.

 

Did I mention it's annoying?  One company I apparently have to get a new code because I can't even use their addon.  With another company all I had to do was re-enter my information and it worked.

 

Does this bother anyone else?  I think BIOS changes /etc shouldn't be a factor because the people who buy FSX addons usually are power users and make changes to their PC's or upgrade components frequently.

 

 

I hear you. It bothers me so much that I have stopped buying addons with any kind of DRM. I've got a collection of 200+ payware addons, and apart from a few ORBX sceneries and FS Global Real Weather I haven't used any of them for a long time.

 

Luckily there is a lot of great freeware around, and since I'm a 100% P3D v2 user the selection of compatible addons are few and far between so I'm not missing out on much. Instead I have shifted my focus in this hobby to creating freeware addons (uncopyrighted, uncredited and free for all for anything and everything) and have spent a lot of time creating very realistic AI traffic - which is very time consuming, but great fun once you get it up and running.

 

 

As a developer I have seen 100 copies sold versus thousands of downloads of a cracked version. So... I think your belief of "honest, paying customer" being the norm is flawed.

 

I wonder why? With zero sympathy for your customer I can understand why someone would be hesitant to give you any cash.

 

That said, I see your problem as a developer and it is going to reamin an unsolvable one. Hopefully customers know what they buy into and developers are honest and open about the DRM they implement in their products. That way it's up to each and everyone to decide if the product is for them or not.


Simmerhead - Making the virtual skies unsafe since 1987! 

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Personally, Ron, I'm one of your customers that have never had an issue with you or the planes I bought from you, so I really have no idea what methods you employ to guard against the less savory individuals in our hobby.  My response to Ed was intended more in general terms as it seemed that's where the conversation was headed, and my remarks weren't necessarily directed  toward any one developer specifically.  No offense intended and, I hope, none taken.

Cheers!!

Of course none is intended and none is taken Jeff. My participation in this thread was to challenge Lukes contention that IP theft has little impact whether moral or economic if you are insulated from its effects. B)


Best Regards,

Ron Hamilton ASEL

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The only scenario that I know about where developers and publishers don't care about piracy are usually the "free to play" content that is driven by advertising revenue ... can't be a thief when the product is free.

 

Luke's thought process doesn't make any logical sense to me, especially given the data my company has gathered and our ROI improvement based on the decisions we've made by knowing our thieves.  

 

Luke, I've pretty much knocked down your logic every step of the way from the definition of theft to actual lost revenue from theft to showing you how moral issues are very much a part of business ... don't know how to be more clear??  Your responses are a typical of attempts to goad developers into a reaction ... but another question to bring down your logic ... if you aren't concerned about theft and aren't monitoring it (which you have indicated as such), how would you know or be able to make an decisions regarding theft without any real data as a metric?

 

But I think I have to agree with other's Luke, your contribution to this thread is lacking in content and appears to be one in defense of theft as you've side stepped the very real problems associated with your thought process/assumptions.  

 

Cheers, Rob.

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Have software developers considered that product distribution on a "pay per copy" is not a sustainable business model? 

The print media learned long ago that the revenue- and hence profit - is derived by selling advertising and giving away free, the software product. 

The more copies you can distribute, the higher prices you can charge advertisers!

One would suspect for example,  that airlines and auto manufacturers might consider simmers to be a very interesting target.

Would it work? Well I read Bloomberg Net News daily and pay nothing for the privilege- but I accept that being exposed to advertisements is the price I pay.

Why not a Boeing promo each time you start up a PMDG product? Might even deter the so-called pirates since they would have to watch a commercial before using the software.

Complaining about pirates is a waste of effort- change your business model!

january

 

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