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Legal or Not? NES Emulation on the Internet

Discussion in 'Legal Issues' started by sixty6, Jul 21, 2006.

  1. #1
    Ok, recently I have been adding NES Games to my arcade in the NES Category:
    http://sixty6arcade.com/index.php?lid=118
    SEMrush
    I also placed a copyright notice at the top of every game:
    But at the same time, I found a website which was contacted by Nintendo and they survived. EveryVideoGame (Contacted by Nintendo itself and only Nintendo-Copyrighted Games have been removed):
    http://everyvideogame.com/PNphpBB2-v...-copyright.htm

    AND

    http://everyvideogame.com/PNphpBB2-v...-copyright.htm

    However, recently I noticed that one of my rivaling websites got contacted by legal departments:
    http://www.atarcade.com/forum/ninten...now-vt244.html

    Is my website safe or not and what can I do to keep it safe? I appreciate all input! I really want to display NES Games on my arcade and I have sent an E-Mail to nintendo
     
    sixty6, Jul 21, 2006 IP
    SEMrush
  2. KLB

    KLB Peon

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    #2
    You are trampling all over Nintendo's copyrights and your disclaimer provides you no legal protections. Regardless of their ability to hire better lawyers than you, I seriously doubt you would survive any legal challenge by Nintendo.
     
    KLB, Jul 21, 2006 IP
  3. sixty6

    sixty6 Well-Known Member

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    #3
    *sigh I am trying NOT to trample over their copyright laws, if you actually read the post with the links I gave, you would understand the question I'm looking at.

    I am not looking for trouble, so read the post before you just start posting random stuff....
     
    sixty6, Jul 21, 2006 IP
  4. KLB

    KLB Peon

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    #4
    I'm afraid I'm just telling you the way it is and the way copyright laws are. If you are trying to use an emulator to make Nintendo's games available online for any users to use, you are violating Nintendo's copyrights, not to mention all of the trademark infringements you are treading on.
     
    KLB, Jul 21, 2006 IP
  5. sixty6

    sixty6 Well-Known Member

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    #5
    But what if I offer to take the game of the website if they the author contacts me with legit information showing that he is the owner.

    Can you also tell me how http://www.everyvideogame.com/ got past it?
     
    sixty6, Jul 21, 2006 IP
  6. KLB

    KLB Peon

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    #6
    You are still violating their copyrights and just hoping they don't sue you into oblivion. Put simply to justify your actions by saying you will cease the copyright infringement if the copyright owner complains is unjustifiable and risks opening you even greater legal trouble.

    They either:
    1) have written permission or licenses from authorized parties to provide the gams

    2) are trying to stay under the "radar screen" and are simply depending on your line of rational about making copyright owners defend their copyrights.
     
    KLB, Jul 21, 2006 IP
  7. sixty6

    sixty6 Well-Known Member

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    #7
    Well Nintendo contacted them last year after somebody reported them and they said they were fine with it.

    I'm removing the games though, Nintendo sent a reply to my E-Mail :(
     
    sixty6, Jul 21, 2006 IP
  8. marketjunction

    marketjunction Well-Known Member

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    #8
    If was the the owner of the copyright, I would watch you use my item(s) under copyright to accumulate damages and then simply sue you without warning.

    Unless I came to the conclusion, through public research, that you had no assets of any value. However, if your site was doing ok, that's an asset worth taking even if you don't have a house, car, cash and so forth.
     
    marketjunction, Jul 21, 2006 IP
  9. Al Capone

    Al Capone Well-Known Member

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    #9
    Hey, I think I know why everyvideogame isn't bothered for having those games, I think they have a dedicated server offshore, what do you guys think? They also own onvgp which is in malasia

    Nope, arcade sites don't pay enough to hire a lawyer.

    ive been thinking about getting an offshore server for my site but i want to be sure they don't have juristiction over that country because if they do, i don't really have any other use for one, do you guys think they can doing anything in overseas servers?
     
    Al Capone, Jul 26, 2006 IP
  10. marketjunction

    marketjunction Well-Known Member

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    #10
    Here's a clue. Where your server resides doesn't matter. If you are violating, for example, a U.S. law and live in the U.S., you are not exempt. Other countries might be different, but here (USA) that doesn't work.

    Case in point are people who own online casinos offshore, but live here. They get arrested.
     
    marketjunction, Jul 26, 2006 IP
  11. .bmp

    .bmp Active Member

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    #11
    the way i understood it from years messing around with emulator code is:

    you can personally use an emulator with a ROM if you own the original physical cart/game

    you can not distribute ROMs, no matter what, to people who do not own that game ("i had it when i was a kid" dosn't work)

    If you ran a site that allows anyone to use NEScafe emulating copyrighted ROMs to which you can not provide proof that they own the game, (your disclaimers really aren't worth the pixels they are written on) you will be deemed to be distributing the ROMs and under Nintendo et al's copyrights you can get shutdown / sued.

    the only way you could actually justify it is if the site was totaly locked down to public, only you had access AND you owned every game you played on the site.

    The actual suscesful emulator coders NEVER distribute roms or even point to any ROM sites for this reason.

    Go speak with some of the burnt out coders on IRC - they know these copyright laws like the back of thier hands and they'll tell you you cant do it - even hosting off shore will just bring you trouble, theres not really many countries that thier laws don't hold up in
     
    .bmp, Jul 26, 2006 IP
  12. KLB

    KLB Peon

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    #12
    There are over 100 countries that respect U.S. copyright laws by treaty or have comparable laws. Really there aren't that many safe havens.
     
    KLB, Jul 26, 2006 IP
  13. Al Capone

    Al Capone Well-Known Member

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    #13
    Someone has been doing there research :D I like that, yes, there are over 100 that signed Berne Convention.

    I only need 1 country with 1 server, and there are about 40 country (most of which are in africa or in the middle east) that haven't signed the berne convention, the ones I had my eyes on were Taiwan, Hong Kong or Iran as they seem to be the only ones I could find that have reliable looking sites.

    KLB, could you clarify the status on Hong Kong, wikipedia didn't have any information on whether or not they signed it, the host I contacted in hong kong said anything is ok aslong as it's not kiddy porn or spam but is hong kong is part of china or not because if it is then china was on the list of Berne Convention signers. I am considering going with the hong kong server and I want to make sure that I don't get f*cked over
     
    Al Capone, Jul 26, 2006 IP
  14. Al Capone

    Al Capone Well-Known Member

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    #14
    I doubt nintendo will go through the trouble of trying to sue me, the onvgp.com site seems to be doing ok and there hosting all there games in Malaysia (which oddly enough has entered the berne convention since 1990) but no one seems to be busting down there door...
     
    Al Capone, Jul 26, 2006 IP
  15. livingearth

    livingearth Well-Known Member

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    #15
    LMAO This is funny...
    All the members with red blocks are trying to figure out how to get away with crap.
    And all the members with green blocks are trying to explain why they can't.

    Give up green team they honestly don't understand.
     
    livingearth, Jul 26, 2006 IP
  16. mxlabs

    mxlabs Peon

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    #16
    IP Address: 64.27.25.90
    IP Location: - California - Los Angeles - Hollywood Interactive Inc

    I might be wrong... but since when is LA considered "offshore"? :)
     
    mxlabs, Jul 26, 2006 IP
  17. KLB

    KLB Peon

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    #17
    Sorry, I don't help anyone find out, which countries are not part of the treaty. I 'm not going to help anyone find safe haven's with reliable servers.

    Hong Kong is part of China since I think 1999ish, when the United Kingdom's 100 year lease on Hong Kong was up and they returned control of Hong Kong back to China. So from this stance if China is a signer of the Berne Convention then Hong Kong would also be bound by the convention (thankfully).
     
    KLB, Jul 26, 2006 IP
  18. lordmenace

    lordmenace Well-Known Member

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    #18
    Seems he got caught.
     
    lordmenace, Jul 26, 2006 IP
  19. marketjunction

    marketjunction Well-Known Member

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    #19
    BTW, distributing an electronic copy of something that was not purchased is a violation of copyright even if you or the receiving party owns a legal copy of the item. See case law on the subject if you don't believe that.

    But, do what you want. It's your life and you get to live with your choices not me. ;)
     
    marketjunction, Jul 26, 2006 IP
  20. KLB

    KLB Peon

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    #20
    Besides at $150,000 per infraction plus legal expenses it isn't like he would be paying any legal settlment and lawyer bills for the rest of his life.
     
    KLB, Jul 26, 2006 IP