A foul practice abounds

This is a discussion on A foul practice abounds within the A Brief History of Cprogramming.com forums, part of the Community Boards category; Downloading games from the internet b/c you are too lazy to go to the store or don't want to pay ...

  1. #1
    Super Moderator VirtualAce's Avatar
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    A foul practice abounds

    Downloading games from the internet b/c you are too lazy to go to the store or don't want to pay extra?

    Beware.


    Lots of game companies are starting to use WildTangent and moreso Boonty Box to provide downloads for their games. This will install several programs that run in the background while you play your game...and every time you play your game.

    So you say I'll just uninstall BoontyBox or whatever it is...and yes that works until you run the exe for the game. That's right they are infecting the exe with their crappy spyware software. This to me is a clear invasion of privacy and nearly 'hacker' in nature. Adding a service we can uninstall is not a major issue, but infecting the exe so that when you run the game it reinstalls the spyware service....now that's a whole nother ball game.

    I for one am seeking legal action to take against these types of practices. What's the difference of them infecting an exe to track my game playing habits or me infecting their exe to distribute a virus?

    Nothing.

  2. #2
    Its hard... But im here swgh's Avatar
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    If I was to answer it sounds like a very cruel and unfriedly way to make a user "buy" a game rather than download it, it would not be at all wrong. I agree Bubba, how certain companys ( we are not naming names ) think they can get away with implanting spyware/adware or as you suggested viruses onto sombodys machine is beyond me.

    So I take it the more you play one of these games, the more spyware adds up. its crazy. Im glad you are taking legal action, sombody should. Spyware and adware creators seem to be getting clever in the fact they can get around peoples removal tools on their machines. It is somthing everybody should be on the look out for, I run all cleaning tools on my laptop once a week, do a virus scan once a every fortnight.

    The only way we can beat this sort of thing is by carfully tracking the source and putting and end to the companys that deliver such malisouse sotware.

    Unfortunatly, that seems a long way off...
    I'm just trying to be a better person - My Name Is Earl

  3. #3
    Registered User
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    My Computer Came With Wildtangent Preinstalled

    OS: Windows 7, XUbuntu 11.10, Arch Linux
    IDE: CodeBlocks
    Compiler: GCC

  4. #4
    In the Land of Diddly-Doo g4j31a5's Avatar
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    Is it the same with StarForce protection?

  5. #5
    Registered /usr
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    Bearing in mind that EA is already selling advertising in its games. Does that make the actual game adware? If so, they will gain your permission through the EULA anyway.

  6. #6
    (?<!re)tired Mario F.'s Avatar
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    And that is the key point. Don't like the EULA? Don't buy it.
    The programmer’s wife tells him: “Run to the store and pick up a loaf of bread. If they have eggs, get a dozen.”
    The programmer comes home with 12 loaves of bread.


    Originally Posted by brewbuck:
    Reimplementing a large system in another language to get a 25% performance boost is nonsense. It would be cheaper to just get a computer which is 25% faster.

  7. #7
    Super Moderator VirtualAce's Avatar
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    This is not in the EULA. The spyware is not part of the original licensed product. It is placed there by the download service so they can track your interests for future advertising. The spyware resides in the setup.exe and in the exe files for the games which to me is clearly a hidden and subversive tactic. Don't infect the exes with spyware just to track players, especially when the original exe does not have that in it.
    Last edited by VirtualAce; 12-04-2006 at 06:13 AM.

  8. #8
    (?<!re)tired Mario F.'s Avatar
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    It is possible then that you have a case. Have you contacted the sales department of the game makers about it?
    The programmer’s wife tells him: “Run to the store and pick up a loaf of bread. If they have eggs, get a dozen.”
    The programmer comes home with 12 loaves of bread.


    Originally Posted by brewbuck:
    Reimplementing a large system in another language to get a 25% performance boost is nonsense. It would be cheaper to just get a computer which is 25% faster.

  9. #9
    Insane Game Developer Nodtveidt's Avatar
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    If the installation of the software in question is written about in the EULA and you installed the software anyways, then you have no case unless the software's purposes are not expressly stated in the EULA itself. Just syaing "this software installs yadda-yadda spyware agent" isn't enough; it needs to specify the intended purpose beyond doubt. Read the EULA very very carefully and make note of any vague areas or omissions, then, if you think you have a case, take it to a corporate attourney with interest or, optimally, experience in software and/or product fraud. It might be wise to consult one anyways and have him/her read the EULA for potential problems. In any event, gather as much data as possible, you have a much better chance that way rather than just running in with guns blazing.

    Ads in games are another ballgame altogether (pun intended). Companies pay big bucks for those ads and it's all legal. I never ever buy these games myself...I play video games to ESCAPE reality, not to have it thrown back in my face. Hell, I don't even watch TV for the plain and simple reason that I cannot stand advertising.

  10. #10
    Ethernal Noob
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    This is why I don't buy EA games or many PC games to begin with.

  11. #11
    Supermassive black hole cboard_member's Avatar
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    >> This is why I don't buy EA games or many PC games to begin with.

    How many PC games do this? Forgive my ignorance, but I only know of two games, BF2 and Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory. Clearly there are more but I didn't think it was so widespread that it's putting people off of buying PC games.
    Good class architecture is not like a Swiss Army Knife; it should be more like a well balanced throwing knife.

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  12. #12
    Reverse Engineer maxorator's Avatar
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    Simple advertisings are not bad. But spyware - DEATH TO THE COMPANIES WHO DISTRIBUTE SPYWARE.
    "The Internet treats censorship as damage and routes around it." - John Gilmore

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    I think the cleverest defence may be the development of "brick wall" software. You don't attack or attempt to remove the spyware as such, but any functions it calls to gain information is met with a "blank" response.

    Let's see how profitable that is...

  14. #14
    (?<!re)tired Mario F.'s Avatar
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    Quite easy to implement with current personal firewalls. I never understand why certain software I buy calls home. But I don't care either. I simply block it from doing so. Even easier if the software is a third party application.
    The programmer’s wife tells him: “Run to the store and pick up a loaf of bread. If they have eggs, get a dozen.”
    The programmer comes home with 12 loaves of bread.


    Originally Posted by brewbuck:
    Reimplementing a large system in another language to get a 25% performance boost is nonsense. It would be cheaper to just get a computer which is 25% faster.

  15. #15
    Insane Game Developer Nodtveidt's Avatar
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    A spyware replacement application is also a possibility...

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