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The latest ToS is o.k.ing playing on free shards?!

Discussion in 'UHall' started by Tanivar, Aug 2, 2015.

  1. Tanivar

    Tanivar Crazed Zealot
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    Just read the latest Terms of Service before agreeing to it (I do weird things like that). Is it really saying that play on non EA game sites is o.k. to do?

    If so, hopefully Stratics will allow us to name and discuss the various free shards in these forums. I'd love to find one that doesn't come with malware.
     
  2. Nexus

    Nexus Site Support
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    Provide a link to the ToS in question if you would.
     
  3. Nexus

    Nexus Site Support
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    Never Mind. I found it, while EA's Terms of Service doesn't limit it, Ultima Online's Rules of Conduct does, http://help.ea.com/en/article/ultima-online-service-rules-of-conduct/

    For it to be acceptable here on Stratics, at this point in time, content related to UO has to fall in line with both EA's Terms of Service and Ultima Online's Rules of Conduct. Remember while Broadsword is effectively managing UO, it is still EA's property.
     
  4. Tanivar

    Tanivar Crazed Zealot
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  5. Smoot

    Smoot Grand Poobah
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    i didnt see anything in that tos that would prevent freeshards, since any reference to what free shards are based on says "unless authorized by EA" therefore, if EAs new tos has authorized it, the UO tos allows it.
     
  6. Smoot

    Smoot Grand Poobah
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    also, from what ive seen posted on the boards, the "agreement" currently with broadsword is not so much official rules, but more like a gentleman's handshake. technically stratics isnt legally or officially bond at all to what can be discussed here.

    they way i see it, Broadsword needs an outlet for their news and access to players. thats stratics. nothing else really exists. the only risk stratics has to broadsword totally abandoning the minimal dev involvement we get here would be if broadsword made their own site, which from what history has shown us is very unlikely.

    So it basically comes down to, pretty sure we could talk about and highlight freeshards and broadsword would be forced out of necessity to continue the very loose relationship they currently have with stratics.

    *shrugs*
     
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  7. Lord Frodo

    Lord Frodo Grand Poobah
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    EA ToS
    "- Attempt to use EA Software on or through any service that is not controlled or authorized by Electronic Arts. Any such use is at your own risk and may subject you to additional or different terms. EA takes no responsibility for your use of EA Software on or through any service that is not controlled by Electronic Arts."
    and
    13. Software, Utilities and Tools

    EA Services may require or allow you to download software, software updates or patches, or other utilities and tools from EA or its licensors onto your computer, entertainment system or device ("EA Software"). EA grants to you a non-exclusive, limited license to use EA Software solely for the purpose stated by EA at the time the EA Software is made available to you. If an End User License Agreement or End User Access And License Agreement is provided with the EA Software, your use of the EA Software is subject to the terms of that license agreement. You may not sub-license, or charge others to use or access EA Software. You may not translate, reverse-engineer, reverse-compile or decompile, disassemble or make derivative works from EA Software. You may not modify EA Software or use it in any way not expressly authorized in writing by EA. You understand that EA's introduction of various technologies may not be consistent across all platforms and that the performance of EA Software and related EA Services may vary depending on your computer and other equipment.

    From time to time, Electronic Arts may provide you with updates or modifications to EA Software. You understand that certain updates and modifications may be required in order to continue use the EA Software and EA Services.

    So unless Free Shards have it in writing they are still in violation and not authorized by EA to use.
     
  8. Nexus

    Nexus Site Support
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    It looks like EA introduced a universal ToS for all it's online game services, that would be MMO's and non-MMO's. UO though does have a separate RoC which I linked. In that RoC it has two lines that stand out.

    • You will not actively encourage other players to violate the Terms of Service or Rules of Conduct.
    • You will not create, use, play on or provide any server emulator or other service where Ultima Online may be played. You will not post, use or distribute any utilities, applications, emulators or other software tools related to Ultima Online that do not have the express written permission of Electronic Arts to be used with the Service. Information about approved software can be found here.

    But you are right, Stratics has no formal agreement with Broadsword, but we do attempt to honor the agreement we had in the past. Until that decision, which isn't mine or any other staff member other than the sites owner's, changes naming and actively promoting Freeshards isn't allowed.
     
  9. Smoot

    Smoot Grand Poobah
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    just saying, if EA wrote in a new tos that freeshards are allowed, wouldnt that negate that whole bullet since they DO have written permission?

    im no lawyer, and i dont know whats this new language that could encompass free shards actually is, just observing the apparent if in fact the new tos allows for emulators somehow.

    I get what you mean tho. Mesanna hates freeshards. everyone knows that, so even if EA allows it wouldnt be wise for stratics to start up on them unless they want to totally piss her off.
     
  10. Nexus

    Nexus Site Support
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    If the new ToS Allowed for it, but there's a catch in the new ToS

    UO has additional terms that prevent it, in addition since Freeshards are using the Client, art they are technically derivative works. The legal definition of a Derivative Work, at least in the US is:
    So the ToS does prohibit them, but doesn't do it directly as had been done in the past. There is also the bit about other applicable Terms, which would be UO's RoC.
     
  11. Smoot

    Smoot Grand Poobah
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    I see, but wasnt the source code that freeshards are based of off released to the public by EA in 1998 under the GNU General Public License? So EA did in fact expressly authorize the program that freeshards came from. According to the law, because they did that, they cant just go back and claim everything that came from that authorization is now voided. Im sure EA regrets authorizing use of the code back in the 90s, but they did and cant just take that back. This would only apply to classic client of course as it was the only thing that existed when EA gave out the rights and the code.

    So it looks like the new terms of service basically changed nothing in the area of freeshards from what we legally had before.
     
  12. Nexus

    Nexus Site Support
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    Actually UO Emulators first showed up during Beta in late 1996 early 1997, well before the goof that happened with the T2A beta disks.
     
  13. callum_fitzhugh

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    I cant see any good reason to talk about free-shards here anyhow. There are sites for that elsewhere I assume. And why piss off your one big supporter @Mesanna by even indulging free shard stuff?
     
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  14. Smoot

    Smoot Grand Poobah
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    @Nexus

    anyway always interesting discussion to see how games handle user created servers. we went from game companies trying to claim exclusive monopolies on the code, (which obviously never really works) to new games like "Shards Online" openly embracing user created servers and helping them, so games that take this approach will never run into problems created by trying to exterminate, or just living with user created servers.
     
  15. Smoot

    Smoot Grand Poobah
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    well, i dont play freeshards. probably never will. But one day the UO that we talk about here will be cancelled. The majority of UO players wont be effeted by this, because those freeshards will remain in operation. I think its worth discussing from time to time if when EA UO ends, will stratics simply end as well? Like Nexus said earlier, thats a decision only the site owner could make, and thankful i will never have to.
     
  16. Spock's Beard

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    I really don't want to hear about freeshard bull**** here. I can get that elsewhere. I come here to hear about real UO.
     
  17. Zuckuss

    Zuckuss Order | Chaos
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    Please stay on topic. =)
     
  18. Lord Arm

    Lord Arm Seasoned Veteran

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    why would we want to see free shard discussions here. why would someone want post about it here? doesn't sound like a wise move, just my thoughts.
     
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  19. Tjalle

    Tjalle Grand Inquisitor
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    Yeah, I´ve always wondered about that as well.
    We just risk having EA UO players read about it, decide they want to try it out and then stay there and close their EA UO account(s). A loss for us.
     
  20. TimberWolf

    TimberWolf Babbling Loonie
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    well yes if you live in a society afraid of competition, then your views make perfect sense. But maybe having players discuss them openly and honestly would give Broadsword and others a kick in the pants to improve the present game. Maybe competition in a free market system is what drives progress and improvements. Maybe Stratics has a responsibility to the gaming public to encourage these discussions!
     
  21. Zuckuss

    Zuckuss Order | Chaos
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    This discussion has been mostly about the interpretation of Broadswords' Terms of Service and how they compare to the UO Rules of Conduct, however we are starting to drift awfully off-topic here.
     
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  22. TimberWolf

    TimberWolf Babbling Loonie
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    I disagree Wild....it is all related. The core reason for the Broadswords terms of service is their fear to compete on a level playing field...and stratics enabling this to happen. The one subject goes hand in hand with the other. If Ron Bron chose to allow those discussion developers might feel pressure to improve UO and implement changes that free servers have to the betterment of the game. It is my understanding that many of the best ideas currently in UO originated or were inspired by free shards. So I dont understand how this could be a negative for the gaming public. And isnt that the goal of stratics...the Betterment of the gaming public??
     
    #22 TimberWolf, Aug 3, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2015
  23. Captn Norrington

    Captn Norrington Trade Forum Administrator
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    Ok everyone, Zuckuss has already asked you guys to stay on topic twice, and now the conversation has gone way off the rails into arguments, politics, and who was or was not in the military. None of those things have anything to do with UO, so please let's keep the discussion about UO related things.
     
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  24. Riyana

    Riyana Operations
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    This thread has been cleaned up. The discussion about free speech and military service was moved to Off-Topic here. Let's keep this on-topic and polite.

    Stratics tries to uphold the UO RoC, which as has been pointed out, still disallows third-party shards. While I agree that some such shards have done clever and innovative things, I like that Stratics emphasizes the official games and the official rules.
     
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  25. Capt. Lucky

    Capt. Lucky Babbling Loonie

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    Was just thinking how happy I was it wasn't me being chastised! But then I realized I went off topic... :(
     
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  26. Kirthag

    Kirthag Former Stratics Publisher
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    my head hurts