What price “peace”? (Hint: Ask Neville Chamberlain)

December 30, 2009 · Posted in Copycats 

Frequently Asked Question #72:

I understand that you guys are upset about the wholesale theft of your databases and other material, but don’t you think that your public complains about the incident are going too far? Don’t you understand that the flamewars inevitably erupting from your public accusations are driving new players away? You are effectively killing the community!

Response:

Let’s say you work your butt off to make something unique over the span of many years. You are justly proud of it. Then somebody rips it off and puts it on display as his own work. Naturally, you turn to the supposed "authority" (and self-appointed protector of IP rights) on the subject, and ask for corrective measures. They tell you (off the record) that you are right, but they are not going to take any action to remedy the theft. They also ask you to keep quiet about the whole deal, so as not to disturb "the peace of the neighborhood".

What do you do?

Do you suck it up, be a good puppy, and let the culprits walk? Or do you raise hell until justice is done?

What is the price of “peace in the neighborhood”? Is it worth losing something valuable to you? If you answer yes, wait until it happens to you.

Did the public argument drive some people away from the game? Perhaps. Did the knowledge that IP theft is A-OK in this community drive away the DB & scenario creators in droves, thus draining the community’s lifeblood? You bet. As we predicted and warned that it would.

As a result of getting away with the rape of the DB2000, the “creator” of the PDB has since then moved on to plagiarize material from other sources (e.g. the HUD), modify and re-post the scenarios of others without their consent (Ralf Koelbach) and generally vindicate anyone who considers him the single most destructive element in the Harpoon community.

Once more, appeasement for the sake of peace has failed.

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