Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Blizzard Tries To Forbid Open Sourcing Glider

kdawson posted about 6 years ago | from the keep-that-cat-in-that-bag dept.

The Courts 638

ruphus13 notes a new development in Blizzard's case against MDY, which we discussed last week. Blizzard, the maker of World of Warcraft, has now requested another injunction — to prevent the open sourcing of Glider code. Quoting: "Blizzard has asked the court for a relatively unconventional order prohibiting MDY from making the source code for its MMO Glider software available to the public, and prohibiting MDY from helping people develop other World of Warcraft automation software. Blizzard had previously asked the court to shut down MDY's WoW operations in its motion for summary judgment, but the court's summary judgment order did not address Blizzard's request. Blizzard's requests to prohibit open-source release of MDY's software and prohibit MDY's assistance in development of independent WoW bots are new to this motion — and seem likely to raise eyebrows in the open source and digital rights advocacy camps."

cancel ×

638 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

ZOMG (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24433953)

FIRST!

I have a solution.... (5, Funny)

Lumpy (12016) | about 6 years ago | (#24434003)

OOPS! we were hacked! our source code was stolen!

OMG!! It's all over pirate bay! sorry!

In other words, legally say "Blizzard.... Go To Hell."

Re:I have a solution.... (5, Insightful)

oahazmatt (868057) | about 6 years ago | (#24434085)

OOPS! we were hacked! our source code was stolen!

OMG!! It's all over pirate bay! sorry!

In other words, legally say "Blizzard.... Go To Hell."

Except, it's not legal if MDY claims this happens in court, when in reality the story is a bit fabricated.

Also, doing so before the court has a chance to accept or deny Blizzard's request may not help MDY's case at all, and end up costing them.

Re:I have a solution.... (4, Insightful)

Richard_at_work (517087) | about 6 years ago | (#24434347)

Infact, such an act would probably end up with them being held in contempt of court of the original ruling, let alone this case.

Re:I have a solution.... (-1, Troll)

mweather (1089505) | about 6 years ago | (#24434877)

Except, it's not legal if MDY claims this happens in court, when in reality the story is a bit fabricated.

It's only illegal if you get caught.

Re:I have a solution.... (3, Insightful)

pathos49 (838882) | about 6 years ago | (#24434329)

OOPS! we were hacked! our source code was stolen!

OMG!! It's all over pirate bay! sorry!

In other words, legally say "Blizzard.... Go To Hell."

Well are you not a swell guy or what??? So what do you say to the guy that is NOT cheating? "Hey that is your problem, you oughta cheat too" This code sucks and people that develop it suck as well. They are people that do not believe rules are for them. Why don't they just go write ther own Open source versions of WoW and play with themselves. I want to play the game WITHOUT having to resort to cheat.

Re:I have a solution.... (3, Funny)

Spy der Mann (805235) | about 6 years ago | (#24434477)

This code sucks and people that develop it suck as well. They are people that do not believe rules are for them.

You would make an excellent agent... Mister Anderson.

Re:I have a solution.... (3, Insightful)

mhall119 (1035984) | about 6 years ago | (#24434593)

How about Blizzard just fixes their software not not allow cheating?

Re:I have a solution.... (5, Informative)

spyrochaete (707033) | about 6 years ago | (#24434783)

How about Blizzard just fixes their software not not allow cheating?

They do this all the time, and people are often banned for using cheats. WowGlider used to actively probe resident memory for the values of variables but now WoW checks for such activity, so Glider sacrificed accuracy for stealth by only passively watching memory and controlling the character based on various criteria. In the eyes of WoW's anti-cheating scheme, Glider really does appear to be ordinary user input - especially when the user stays at they keyboard, occasionally doing some human-like stuff such as chatting with friends.

Re:I have a solution.... (4, Interesting)

Escogido (884359) | about 6 years ago | (#24434837)

It's not a *fix*, it's a design flaw.

From my experience as a MMO designer, battling automated play is actually a huge design problem. In many cases you don't want to do it by changing the code because the time and effort spent to do that are much better spent developing real game features. So in many games people take the easiest route and just outlaw automated gameplay instead of changing the design to make sure it is not possible to benefit much from it. Can't really blame anyone for that.

Still it doesn't change this Blizzard's request being utterly ridiculous. With all my genuine respect to the company, someone must have had a brainfart in this case.

Re:I have a solution.... (4, Funny)

tritonman (998572) | about 6 years ago | (#24434529)

Eventually, they will probably take Microsoft to court and demand that they remove things from the Windows API like ReadProcessMemory, SetWindowsHookEx and even SendKeys.

Re:I have a solution.... (1)

Oh no, it's Dixie (1332795) | about 6 years ago | (#24434589)

I read the summary, and was just about to suggest this. Couldn't have said it better myself.

Who knew? We forgot to put a password on the CVS and accidentally announced it on the on the front page! Whoops!

Cheat happens! (1)

aliquis (678370) | about 6 years ago | (#24434687)

It's a risk you take, of course one can try to develop the game in a way which makes it harder, but if someone is intelligent enough they may find a way anyway.

Though I think cheating is a bigger issue in NDS games for instance where the developers didn't expect anyone to be able to change the code and therefor took no protective measures, and therefor for instance let the client decide which blocks comes next in Tetris DS which makes some people play with all long ones ... Good work!

Do it (0, Flamebait)

Rinisari (521266) | about 6 years ago | (#24434019)

Just do it. Just release it.

www.piratebay.org

Re:Do it (0, Flamebait)

Hatta (162192) | about 6 years ago | (#24434063)

Agreed. No matter what the court says, you can't un-open source.

Also, there's exactly 0 chance of me buying anything from blizzard ever again. Starcraft II, Diabolo II, fuck it. Blizzard can eat a dick.

Re:Do it (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24434281)

Because they want to stop someone from publishing a way to fuck over most players of their games?

Yup, how evil of them.

Re:Do it (5, Insightful)

MoonBuggy (611105) | about 6 years ago | (#24434321)

It's not what they did, it's how they did it. It's a damn shame that they chose to use the insane 'copyright on RAM contents' argument. They did have a reasonably legitimate complaint, since (as I understand it, at least) glider causes problems on their servers which they have authority over. Trying to tell people what they can and can't do with their own game installations on their own machines is an absolute joke, but trying to set terms for what people are allowed to do on a communal service with its own rules is fair enough.

To fulfil Slashdot tradition and make a somewhat clunky and inappropriate car analogy: I can attach rockets to my car and blast along at 300mph on my own land and it's none of the manufacturer's damn business. If I then paid them to take it on their test track which had a rule saying "No rocket cars" they'd be well within their rights to kick me out.

Re:Do it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24434605)

In this case, Blizzard is forcing the rocket manufacturer to stop making rockets.

Re:Do it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24434773)

Kick you out? Yes. Forbid you from putting rockets on any more cars? No.

Re:Do it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24434657)

WoW is insignificant compared to the precedents Blizzard's cases (this and others) are setting. Blizzard cases and the corrupt judges they've shopped for, have done more to undermine copyright law and first sale doctrine, than just about anything else. Even Apple and Microsoft combined haven't done this much damage.

Some vengeance really is called for, and if that means WoW is compromised and its players all leave for some competitors' games, all the better that WoW loses that revenue. Making them lose that revenue was never really the point, but as both punishment of their legal activities and as a side-effect of protecting glider's future, it's certainly desirable, don't you think?

They never should have used the argument that they don't really "sell" games. Once they crossed that line, they deserved to lose. Somebody at the company should have stood up and said, "Hey, this is immoral, unethical, a threat to the software industry, and a threat to the software industry's customers." They didn't. Or if someone did, they're certainly no longer employed there or holding any stock, so they're safe from harm.

Re:Do it (1)

allaunjsilverfox2 (882195) | about 6 years ago | (#24434911)

The just avoid proprietary software. It'd be interesting to see cheat devices/software being blocked on the grounds of that blizzards has stated if it's GNU software. It MIGHT work if it were BSD software since their isn't a requirement to release any changes. (Not meant to be flame bait, I'm merely stating the changes were non-obvious.) That or choose a software company that aren't complete *uc*tards about insecure software.

Re:Do it (2, Insightful)

Forthac4 (836529) | about 6 years ago | (#24434823)

WoW isn't a first person shooter or something, its not like people are using aimbots. This program basically boils down to a computerized game playing monkey.

Re:Do it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24434407)

1) Diablo II came out in 2000

2) Blizzard Legal != Developers... it's a shameful move but it's not going to stop me from buying their games, which have always rocked.

Re:Do it (1)

Hatta (162192) | about 6 years ago | (#24434729)

1) Yeah I thought III and typed II, oops.

2) Can't support one without supporting the other. There are plenty of great games to play, why not play one you can ethically support?

Re:Do it (2, Insightful)

aliquis (678370) | about 6 years ago | (#24434781)

I will buy more things, I like that they try to get rid of cheaters and people abusing the game for profit. Those people just destroy the game for all others.

I doubt blizzard do this for themself as much as for their costumers (which if there was lots of cheaters and people grinding for profit would not have been future costumers and therefor would affect Blizzard themself to.)

It's the people who run patched games which suck.

Amusing (2, Interesting)

jgtg32a (1173373) | about 6 years ago | (#24434031)

This should be very amusing. Was there any indication that MDY intended to Open up Glider?

Re:Amusing (1)

Bieeanda (961632) | about 6 years ago | (#24434251)

If there isn't, it'll be utterly hilarious. Blizzard will have carte blanche to jump down their collective throats, on the grounds that they're both evading the injunction against Glider development, and intentionally attempting to harm the WoW service in retaliation for that injunction.

Re:Amusing (2)

sm62704 (957197) | about 6 years ago | (#24434257)

In this case I was going to rtfa, but I see th elink goes to a site named virtuallyblind.com. Does anybody have a link to a reputable site, and not just some guy's blog?

Can they do that? (5, Informative)

HaloZero (610207) | about 6 years ago | (#24434035)

If the Glider software doesn't contain any copyright infringement (which MDY may be hard-pressed to prove - really, dunno), can Blizzard legally prevent them from Open Sourcing the software? It would seem to me that that's really not going to fly that well.

Re:Can they do that? (1)

Exanon (1277926) | about 6 years ago | (#24434169)

As far as I can recall. The court case involved the Glider program interfering with WoW and not the code - which - should be available under that pesky little "free speech" clause.

Personally I hate the botters, but Blizzards lobbying just shows how much of a problem they think Glider is.

Re:Can they do that? (1)

HaloZero (610207) | about 6 years ago | (#24434543)

Don't get me wrong, I'm not defending the botter's actions. I'm a proponent of 'The way it was meant to be played', but one company blasting another company's ability to release a piece of software - regardless of what it does, when it does not violate a copyright - is a dangerous prescedent to set.

Re:Can they do that? (5, Insightful)

Alexpkeaton1010 (1101915) | about 6 years ago | (#24434191)

They can do whatever they can trick a judge to go along with.

Re:Can they do that? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24434491)

can Blizzard legally prevent them from Open Sourcing the software?

Yeah if you have enough money. WoW is currently pulling in $150-250 million per month.
Even with the cost of running the game, that'll buy a lot of lobbying/influence. Blizzard is owned by
Activision who is owned by Vivendi. Vivendi loves using the courts to try to enforce its 'IP' rights
over things whenever they can make it look like its threatening their profits.

Re:Can they do that? (1)

Lostlander (1219708) | about 6 years ago | (#24434629)

Blizzard and Activision merged and is still technically owned by Vivendi I believe. However IANACL (I am not a corporate lawyer) but the spirit stays the same they're all sharing money now.

Re:Can they do that? (2, Insightful)

sexconker (1179573) | about 6 years ago | (#24434897)

Yes.
Glider was based off of private code.
Glider could not have been developed with access to that code.

A new, "copyright infringement-free" Glider would be the fruits of copyright infringement.

They could also get them under the DMCA for reverse engineering if they do try to "clean up" the code like a CS student before turning in a copied assignment.

"illegal" open source software (0, Redundant)

phorm (591458) | about 6 years ago | (#24434039)

Is still illegal software. Closed or open source.

it isnt (4, Insightful)

unity100 (970058) | about 6 years ago | (#24434155)

it doesnt infringe on anyone's copyrights.

the STUPID, the OVERLY MORONIC argument blizzard is using is that the program 'modifies the wow software running in THE MEMORY'.

of course, that is trying to fool the old, senile court judges. everyone who has used computers a bit knows that when a program runs in memory, MANY aspects of it are modified on constant basis, and a few million times a second or more. windows kernel code modifies the wow software running in the memory, wow software ITSELF modifies itself in the memory, its memory footprint changes, it reads and writes data from disk, and to network and modifies itself accordingly.

a computer's memory is something too complicated for a lawyer to fathom. they shouldnt sweat it.

Re:it isnt (4, Insightful)

phorm (591458) | about 6 years ago | (#24434243)

Yup, but the problem is that unless it's overturn in appeal, then the judgment stands that this software (in whatever incarnation of licensing) is illegal. Open-sourcing online would basically be a war-call, basically putting it beyond anyone's ability to contain or control. However, doing so might also taint any other projects that make use of the code, as the argument "this software X uses software Y which was already ruled illegal in the courts."

Basically, opening the source would be just be a revenge move. It's good for those that want to mod/hack WoW, but bad for blizzard, not overly beneficial to the creator (not going to make them any cash), and not really beneficial to the image of FOSS community either.

Re:it isnt (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24434429)

>then the judgment stands that this software (in whatever incarnation of licensing) is illegal

No, the usage of the software in conjuction with the concurrent usage of Blizzard's software on the same computer at the is illegal.

If pesticides are banned in your town/city/county/state/province/country does that mean they are banned worldwide? No?

There's your answer.

Re:it isnt (1)

L Boom (1274024) | about 6 years ago | (#24434467)

Scary precedent. Making something illegal because it's bad for big business isn't exactly a step in the right direction. Next thing you know, we'll have Microsoft trying to get injunctions against Open Office for modifying Windows in ways Microsoft never intended. Likewise, they could use the same argument to prevent Wine from making MS programs work under Linux.

There's nothing wrong with maximizing corporate profits, but there's something very seriously wrong with getting the courts to rule illegal anything that promotes competition.

Re:it isnt (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24434397)

I'm on the fence regarding the legal theories being applied. I think Blizzard should have recourse to ensure that people are playing the game within intended parameters, so long as expectations are made clear before money changes hands. I also think that stretching laws to get the desired result is always the wrong approach, and I just haven't decided if I think that's happening here.

But regardless, if you're going to insult the technical knowledge of those you disagree with, at least get the basic facts straight yourself. While it is true that modern computers draw both code storage and data storage from one big pool, there is nonetheless a difference between modifying running code vs. modifying the data storage used by the code. There is also a difference between a process in memory modifying itself (or being modified by the OS -- at the request of the process or in non-transformative ways that keep the system running on behalf of the process) vs. a process modifying another process in ways that contradict the intent of the process's author.

I could just as well say "You can't covict me of tresspassing when I wandered into Company X's board room -- people come and go from that room all the time!"

no (1)

unity100 (970058) | about 6 years ago | (#24434767)

with your logic, even leave aside blizzard's, it constitutes a copyright violation if i hit ctrl alt del and end the Wow client by terminating it in task manager.

Re:it isnt (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24434659)

you never know we might have to go back to batch processing because of this judgement.

Re:"illegal" open source software (2, Insightful)

Chris_Stankowitz (612232) | about 6 years ago | (#24434179)

That's like saying everything at Miliw0rm is illegal. No, the software there can be used for illegal purposes, but in no way is the code it self illegal.

It is, though (1)

phorm (591458) | about 6 years ago | (#24434287)

If the program itself is ruled as illegal in a court of law, then it is, even if the arguments therefore and the verdict itself seem stupid.

If it's overturned in court, not illegal anymore, but I'd hate to see the release and use of this software taint legit FOSS projects.

Re:"illegal" open source software (5, Interesting)

StreetStealth (980200) | about 6 years ago | (#24434197)

I presume you do realize Blizzard's banning abilities only extend to WoW and that they can't actually ban you from real life?

The software was found not to violate any copyrights. It's not illegal. It only violates Blizzard's terms of service. They're free to ban your account for using the bot, but that's all.

Re:"illegal" open source software (5, Informative)

Opportunist (166417) | about 6 years ago | (#24434207)

Care to show me how this software is illegal?

It violates the TOS of another software product. That doesn't make the software illegal. I could write in my TOS that you must not run it on Windows, does that make Windows illegal? I kinda doubt it.

It violates the TOS of Blizzard to use the software in combination with WoW, which may void your license. But "illegal"? At least be correct with the terms you use, it's not like there's any lack of term confusion in the vicinity of copyrights, we don't need more people contributing to it.

Re:"illegal" open source software (4, Interesting)

Hyppy (74366) | about 6 years ago | (#24434275)

IANAL, but I think the case is that it's not criminally illegal, but it does offer a basis to file a claim under contract law. If I recall correctly, it is something along the lines of a 3rd party willfully affecting a breach of contract.

Re:"illegal" open source software (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 6 years ago | (#24434431)

Could you please explain that? When I make it possible for you to break a contract I am liable? For what? Your breach of contract? It's not like I make you use it. By that logic, any gun shop is in deep shit by the moment they sold their first gun.

Re:"illegal" open source software (1)

UncleTogie (1004853) | about 6 years ago | (#24434579)

It's not like I make you use it. By that logic, any gun shop is in deep shit by the moment they sold their first gun.

Sadly enough, people tried something similar [ncsl.org] a little while back. Thankfully, it didn't go anywhere.

Re:"illegal" open source software (4, Informative)

Hyppy (74366) | about 6 years ago | (#24434685)

It's really complicated. Whether by design or not, contract law is astoundingly complex and sometimes borderline irrational.

The basic point when it comes to 3rd party contract interference is intent. If you make a product or provide a service with the explicit intent of causing a breach of contract, the affected party can file a lawsuit claiming damages or requesting other court intervention.

Re:"illegal" open source software (1)

phorm (591458) | about 6 years ago | (#24434359)

One of the arguments was that:

Glider was interfering with Blizzard's contractual relationship with its customers

So basically, if you wanted to use this software as a reference for something completely unrated to WoW, no, it's not illegal. However, if you use it in full or part to interact with WoW, you're likely going to be sued (contact/civil law, not criminal) or your project shut-down. Being FOSS doesn't make a project immune to such things, look at the unfortunate situation with BNETd

Re:"illegal" open source software (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | about 6 years ago | (#24434819)

Yes, but the software itself is not illegal. Does Blizzard have a right to ban you from WoW if you cheat? Yes. Can Blizzard ban you in real life... no.

Hmmm... Lets see about BNETd... http://packages.debian.org/search?keywords=bnetd [debian.org] oh wait... I can install it in Debian

Reading package lists... Done Building dependency tree Reading state information... Done The following NEW packages will be installed: bnetd 0 upgraded, 1 newly installed, 0 to remove and 1 not upgraded. Need to get 363kB of archives. After unpacking 1102kB of additional disk space will be used. Get:1 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com/ [ubuntu.com] gutsy/universe bnetd 0.4.25-6 [363kB] Fetched 363kB in 2s (151kB/s) Selecting previously deselected package bnetd. (Reading database ... 100562 files and directories currently installed.) Unpacking bnetd (from .../bnetd_0.4.25-6_i386.deb) ... Setting up bnetd (0.4.25-6) ... [: 17: ==: unexpected operator Starting Battle.net(R) gaming server: bnetd.

OMG! I just installed it from Ubuntu!!!

Sure, development may have stopped, but you can still get it.

Re:"illegal" open source software (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 6 years ago | (#24434325)

It's not illegal.

Re:"illegal" open source software (1)

Forthac4 (836529) | about 6 years ago | (#24434903)

I haven't heard of any software that is illegal, there are things that can be done with certain pieces of software that is illegal but that does not make the software illegal. I thought it was the profiting from software that was at issue in this case.

Blizzard Open Source Cheats/Trainers not a Novelty (5, Interesting)

c0l0 (826165) | about 6 years ago | (#24434059)

As I've delved into Diablo 2 once again (after watching the imho downright fantastic gameplay video of Diablo 3) over the last few days, I've seen with some amazement that some of the most widely used Battle.net cheats are actually licensed under the GNU GPL - there's even some kind of application framework for interacting with the game programmatically floating around on the web...
It's really interesting to see such development, because back in the days when I really was into all that gaming stuff, there was hardly ever a way to take a look how some trainer's/cheat's author does thing XY. Cool, in a way. :)

That said, I really, really despise cheating in multiplayer games.

Umm... Blizzard? (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 6 years ago | (#24434065)

You prefer this to exist with closed source so you can't read the code and see what they do to hook into your game.

Yeeeeeah, smart move!

Re:Umm... Blizzard? (1)

cp.tar (871488) | about 6 years ago | (#24434291)

Blizzard's programmers also want their Sudoku.
They just do it by disassembling bot code.

Open-sourcing it would ruin it for them, and that is just not right.

Re:Umm... Blizzard? (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 6 years ago | (#24434301)

I suspect they know. It's not hard to figure out.

There will always be hooks into a game.

Pandora's Box (3, Insightful)

Chris_Stankowitz (612232) | about 6 years ago | (#24434069)

Blizzard doesn't really doesn't really want th EFF to get involved in this fight. Ok, the EFF may not actively take part in such a fight, but the OpenSource community will. The enemy of my enemy...

False positives (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24434087)

Blizzard needs to work on there hack detection code.

I just got banned and i've never run any of these hacks as a matter of fact i was playing on a mac

I think perhaps blizzard takes the whole bann thing a tad to seriously to the point of banning false positives.

Re:False positives (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | about 6 years ago | (#24434939)

Every MMORPG I have played once a cheat arises, they go on a banning raid. Doesn't matter if you don't even know what a bot is, they will ban you. However, banning raids are rarer in paid-for MMORPGs because they don't want to kill the revenue stream they have.

Right to Free/Open Speech (0, Troll)

Doc Ruby (173196) | about 6 years ago | (#24434091)

In WoW, maybe you don't have a right to speak freely, if Blizzard says no.

In the Real World, we have that right. We'll see which world these courts are playing their games in.

Re:Right to Free/Open Speech (1, Informative)

Bieeanda (961632) | about 6 years ago | (#24434189)

Your right to free speech is the right to speak freely against the government, not release another company's trade secrets.

Re:Right to Free/Open Speech (1)

Hyppy (74366) | about 6 years ago | (#24434351)

Actually, it's your right to speak freely, which the government cannot infringe. You're still responsible for the civil consequences of your speech.

Re:Right to Free/Open Speech (4, Insightful)

Doc Ruby (173196) | about 6 years ago | (#24434521)

No, my rights and yours are universal. The government is involved because we create a government to protect our rights.

This "Conservative" ideology that "our rights apply only to protection from the government" is just wrong. The Constitution specifies, among other protected rights, that we cannot be slaves - prohibiting not just the government from owning slaves. The Constitution of course instructs the government to protect us from robbery, murder and all kinds of other deprivations of our rights.

Our rights are inalienable. Not just inalienable by the government, but by anyone. We create governments to protect us from that alienation, even while the governments we create are themselves not empowered, and often explicitly prohibited to be sure there's no confusion, to deprive us of those rights. But are created with the power to protect our rights.

Re:Right to Free/Open Speech (1)

cdrudge (68377) | about 6 years ago | (#24434751)

Depends on how the "trade secret" was obtained. With trade secrets, the foruma, source, recipie, etc is kept an internal secret. It can remain that way indefinitely. The downside is that while there are legal protections that prevent an insider from selling it to the competition, if someone discovers the secret independently then they can use it.

To give a company protection they are allowed to patent the "secret". This gives the company exclusive rights to use and/or license it to others. However it does not remain a secret anymore. It's only protected for a limited period of time.

I don't know with Glide if/how a secret was obtained if at all. If the authors were a former employee of Blizzard and they used their knowledge to create Glide, then that might fall in the trade secret category. If they have no connection and just reverse engineered a program, protocol, etc, then Blizzard is SOL on the trade secret route.

apparently lawyers are running blizzard now (1, Insightful)

unity100 (970058) | about 6 years ago | (#24434105)

its not a gaming company anymore eh ?

lets see, they want to BAN an automation software. on grounds that they may be used to automate their game.

im sure they are aware that normal windows macroing programs can also be used to automatize wow. but for some *obscure* reason, they are not disclosing that information to court, and ask the court to ban macro programs worldwide.

Re:apparently lawyers are running blizzard now (4, Insightful)

Xtravar (725372) | about 6 years ago | (#24434549)

If they don't want people to automate their games, maybe they should make their games less repetitive... instead of suing and banning people.

Surely, the development costs would be comparable to lawyer costs.

Re:apparently lawyers are running blizzard now (0)

faloi (738831) | about 6 years ago | (#24434899)

Oh, for a mod point or two. I've been saying the same thing for a while. If you want to stop gold farming, make getting gold easier...or eliminate the necessity for large amounts amounts of it. With no perceived need to buy gold, players won't do it. And the ones that do won't really be gaining an advantage, so it doesn't impact other players. As gold farming is less profitable, less farmers clutter up a server.

The same basic argument holds true for banning people for "automating" the game. If the game is so repetitive that people are resorting to automating various aspects of game play, it seems like it would make more sense to ask how they can make it fun rather than take things to court.

Enemy of my enemy? (2, Funny)

rehtonAesoohC (954490) | about 6 years ago | (#24434129)

Unfortunately, a lot of people will be stricken with, "The Enemy of my Enemy is... the maker of the game that I'm addicted to."

I feel a strange disturbance in the force... as if thousands of WoW-addicts/programmers cried out in pain, and were silenced.

Haven't played in a while... (1)

Notquitecajun (1073646) | about 6 years ago | (#24434141)

Been well over a year since I played WoW, so how has the bot trouble been? They were always more annoying than anything else, and adversely affected some of the economy, but that was about it. Massive bot use would seriously affect gameplay, though...Blizzard may be better off getting some people to corrupt the stuff coming out of pirate bay or something. Distribute bad bots to people who are trying...or they could reduce the grind. Or something. I dunno.

Of course, I could rag on how WoW needs to release its source code and everyone's info because INFORMATION WANTZEZ TO BEEZ FREE, dawg.

Re:Haven't played in a while... (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 6 years ago | (#24434279)

They're not a problem, and there effect on the economy is debatable.

Blizzards design minimize the effect Bots can have.

"they could reduce the grind"
but what would people do between the new releases.something has to keep the payers mindlessly working.

No, that wasn't a typo.

Re:Haven't played in a while... (1)

NewbieProgrammerMan (558327) | about 6 years ago | (#24434555)

I think the last time I saw something that was obviously a bot outside of a battleground was almost 6 months ago. In the battlegrounds it seems there's almost always a couple of leeching bots, but (as far as I can tell) it's not nearly as bad as it was a year ago (and it's not like I'm gonna win any BG's on my alliance toon anyway, so a couple of leechers don't matter so much... :P)

I do play WoW quite a bit (maybe 10-15 hours a week), and I'm also an open source user and contributor. Maybe they'll send Richard Stallman to take away my open-source-zealot-club card, but I don't see any point in getting my knickers in a twist over Blizzard's stance on IP and open source. They provide an entertainment service, for Odin's sake--getting worked up over it is like raging about the price of popcorn at the movies, or the price of a music CD, IMHO.

<equip outfit="flame-retardant-suit"/>

Re:Haven't played in a while... (1)

bigstrat2003 (1058574) | about 6 years ago | (#24434637)

I don't know what other players' stance on the issue is, but for my part, I don't care if their effect on the game's economy is positive. The people using these bots are cheating, plain and simple. Cheating in a game shared with others is despicable and should be swatted down wherever it comes up. That's why I oppose this damnable bot. Course, I also oppose Blizzard's legal tactics here, so it's a bit of a catch-22.

wow,big mistake. (5, Insightful)

geekoid (135745) | about 6 years ago | (#24434165)

This can not help Blizzard in any way what so ever.

A) Glider isn't exactly hard to create.
B) Makes Blizzard look like bullies..again.
C) Now there are several people who are going to create a clone.
D) It's impact on the game, emotional views aside, isn't really that great.

Stopping Glider is a bandage on a bigger issue they refuse to actually address, farming.
Now, farming isn't nearly as bad as everyone makes it out to be. In MMO's that allowed groups to control areas, it was horrible, but you can't really do that in WoW.

Here are some thing they could do:
1) Don't let anyone mine/pick anything that there skill level makes gray to them.
2) put some random drift into movement.
3) limit the price you can sell something for on the AH to 10 times what a vendor would pay
4) don't allow the transfer of more then 100GP a time. Maybe a one time unlimited amount per month.

All of these would be pretty trivial to implement.

Re:wow,big mistake. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24434423)

Instead of going after Glider, why not creating a way to detect Glider user, then AUTO-BAN the user?

Don't try to kill the software, just ban the cheater!

Re:wow,big mistake. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24434465)

All of those but #2 would destroy the in game economy's of most servers.

Re:wow,big mistake. (1)

whisper_jeff (680366) | about 6 years ago | (#24434503)

All of those may be easy to implement but but just because it's easy doesn't make it good (perverted jokes to the contrary...). Those changes would be significant quality of life hits that would frustrate the average user who doesn't even know what Glider is and cause more problems than what they would solve.

Re:wow,big mistake. (1)

twosmokes (704364) | about 6 years ago | (#24434525)

Here are some thing they could do:
1) Don't let anyone mine/pick anything that there skill level makes gray to them.

Now I can't gather my own mats for a new profession. No thanks.

2) put some random drift into movement.
Annoying, but OK.

3) limit the price you can sell something for on the AH to 10 times what a vendor would pay
Uh... vendors will pay you 5G for an item that you could sell for several hundred times that on the open market.

4) don't allow the transfer of more then 100GP a time. Maybe a one time unlimited amount per month.
So now I can't borrow money from friends for an epic mount. Or maybe I can, but I can't pay them back for 30 days. Or I can't sell anything for more than 100g. I'll pass.

Re:wow,big mistake. (1)

Phydaux (1135819) | about 6 years ago | (#24434575)

Here are some thing they could do:
1) Don't let anyone mine/pick anything that there skill level makes gray to them.
2) put some random drift into movement.
3) limit the price you can sell something for on the AH to 10 times what a vendor would pay
4) don't allow the transfer of more then 100GP a time. Maybe a one time unlimited amount per month.

Each of these would negatively affect my normal play.

  1. There are many times when the ingredients you need can come from things that are grey level.
  2. I would find it frustrating to constantly have to adjust my direction, especially if I'm flying somewhere and just want to pop up and grab a drink.
  3. this is just silly, the vendor prices don't match their in-game worth, this would stifle the economy. If someone wants to by my grey titled [Broken I.W.I.N button] for hundreds of gold then they can and should.
  4. I've lent friends and guild-mates loads more than this so they can get mounts, etc.

If people are botting and it's annoying you, just report them. If it doesn't bother you then just leave them be. It is easy enough to make money in WOW, even if you sell everything you pick up to a vendor, just doing daily quests you can make over 200g a day. If lots of people are botting and farming, and if it's ingredients I need, then they will push the price down on the AH undercutting one another. And that is good for me too.

Re:wow,big mistake. (1)

Mortimer82 (746766) | about 6 years ago | (#24434581)

You should stick to subject material you actually know.

> A) Glider isn't exactly hard to create.
If that is true, why is it the only one that anybody seems to know about?
> B) Makes Blizzard look like bullies..again.
That is your opinion, in my opinion, Blizzard is protecting the sense of achievement for myself and all the other players who don't cheat.
> C) Now there are several people who are going to create a clone.
The code isn't released, yet, and this should be a lesson to anyone else who tries to make a profitable business out of cheats for other companies products.
> D) It's impact on the game, emotional views aside, isn't really that great.
As someone who doesn't seem to play the game (based on your comments further down), you are not qualified to make that opinion.

> 1) Don't let anyone mine/pick anything that there skill level makes gray to them.
This is already the case, and has been for years, have you actually played WoW?
> 2) put some random drift into movement.
If you were even remotely interested in computer science, you would know this is a relatively simple problem for a program like Glider to overcome.
> 3) limit the price you can sell something for on the AH to 10 times what a vendor would pay
Price is dictated by the market, and with all market prices, it's affected by supply and demand, some items in the game are seriously rare, like a 1/1000 chance. Those items deserve to sell for a lot, they are hard to come by. Additionally, with daily quests, earning 100gold can be done in a matter of hours.
> 4) don't allow the transfer of more then 100GP a time. Maybe a one time unlimited amount per month.
Again, do you actually know anything about WoW? This would only serve to inconvenience legitimate players, and 100 is not a highly significant amount of gold.

Next time, please don't make a post unless you know what you are talking about.

Re:wow,big mistake. (1)

Mortimer82 (746766) | about 6 years ago | (#24434741)

/embarrassed

Correction on point 2 which I misread initially:
This would only serve to kill the supply of lower level materials, which could very well be in demand.

And to add to the post, Blizzard has already devoted a considerable amount of resources to dealing with botters in terms of actively hunting them down and banning them, as well as making significant code changes purely to make things more difficult for botters.

Glider was selling their product for real money and the sole intent of it's product was to cheat in WoW. If I were Blizzard, I would also be pissed if some other company made a profitable business at my expense.

Re:wow,big mistake. (1)

Clovis42 (1229086) | about 6 years ago | (#24434585)

Don't let anyone mine/pick anything that there skill level makes gray to them

This might be trivial to implement, but I'm guessing the players would be pissed. I've only played for a week, but I'm picking "gray" herbs all the time. What am I supposed to do to get them? Buy them at the auction? Bleh. And who would I buy them from? I'm using up most of my (non-grey) picked herbs to increase my alchemy skill, so I don't think there would be enough to go around. I guess some people could make good money focusing on resource gathering then, but wouldn't that add to the problem?

And this:

limit the price you can sell something for on the AH to 10 times what a vendor would pay

That wouldn't go over to well either. I only auction stuff I can't use, but I've already got well over 10X what the vendor wants. I've never tried, but you can probably be really careful about when to try and trade/auction stuff and make a lot of money. Granted, this might help gold farmers, but it is also a significant part of the game. Legitimate players might really enjoy that aspect. Getting to use play money in a fantasy market can be fun.

Re:wow,big mistake. (2, Insightful)

truesaer (135079) | about 6 years ago | (#24434615)

Here are some thing they could do:
1) Don't let anyone mine/pick anything that there skill level makes gray to them.
2) put some random drift into movement.
3) limit the price you can sell something for on the AH to 10 times what a vendor would pay
4) don't allow the transfer of more then 100GP a time. Maybe a one time unlimited amount per month.

All of these would be pretty trivial to implement.

Jesus, you clearly don't play WoW. These are terrible ideas.

1) People often need materials that are "grey" skill level. From useful potions to metals for engineering, etc. Plus, one of the advantages of having multiple characters is that one of your characters with an appropriate skill can gather materials for another one. This idea would completely break the tradeskill system.

2) This would be ok I guess, just really annoying since it would mean you'd have to constantly nanny your character while on autorun.

3) So you're saying that the market system should be abandoned in favor of having the overworked developers set a price that works not just world wide, but universe wide? Economies vary dramatically from server to server, and materials value vary dramatically as the game evolves from patch to patch. This is possibly the single most destabilizing thing that could possibly be done in WoW.

4) 100g is barely pocket change. It would completely break the system most people use of having a mule dedicated for sending spare stuff to for sale. You have limited inventory space and collect hundreds of items while questing, so this is fairly essential. It would also prevent raiding guilds from functioning effectively as they rely on financial cooperation by their members. Often in very large amounts too, some guilds spend 5-10k gold every week on various items for raiding. Furthermore, it would mean that sales through the trade channel or charging for rare materials or crafting services would no longer be possible.

So lets see, ruin the game with stupid restrictions or oppose a program designed solely for cheating and ruining the financial investment of millions of players...not a tough choice.

Re:wow,big mistake. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24434765)

C) Now there are several people who are going to create a clone.

And now it's going to be (presumably) free. Well done Blizzard, one less hurdle to bot use - having to pay for it - gone.

The Man (1)

obergfellja (947995) | about 6 years ago | (#24434229)

...it is another example of the Man trying to keep us down...

send it to me (0, Troll)

geekoid (135745) | about 6 years ago | (#24434233)

I'll Change it, and then rebrand it.
I ahve a plan that would stop Blizzard in it's tracks.
tbiddy123@yahoo.com

Open Source the Warcraft client! (0, Flamebait)

argent (18001) | about 6 years ago | (#24434305)

They really need to just open source the Warcraft client. If the user interface is reducing the fun of the game by forcing people to repeat pointless activities, let the open source community fix the interface... and implement security at the server.

Bots (1)

Lord Lode (1290856) | about 6 years ago | (#24434311)

So Blizzard is trying to hinder the creation of bots in its MMORPG? Bots in MMORPG's suck anyway! It's not really nice as regular player to see bots playing.

Re:Bots (1)

Jaysyn (203771) | about 6 years ago | (#24434731)

I don't play pay MMORPGs, & I'm not familiar with PvP on WoW, but can't you just kill the bots if you see them? They sound like an easy target.

You cannot outlaw bots (5, Insightful)

Opportunist (166417) | about 6 years ago | (#24434315)

Sure, you can ban bots and you can void licenses when you catch someone, but bottom line: People won't stop as long as two criterions are not matched

1. The game is interesting enough to be played instead of botted.
2. The game is complicated enough to make botting pointless.

Why do people bot? Two reasons. First, they're goldfarmers and want to make as much gold as possible without having to do it themselves. And second, some parts of the game are just boring tedium nobody wants to do but has to.

So what all comes down is time sinks. People want to avoid time sinks. They don't want to sit in one spot and farm the same crapmobs for hours to get their $number $item for $quest. That's boring and tedious. They don't want to farm $mob for gold to buy their mount, that's boring and tedious.

Give people what they want to play and you have no problem with bots. Simple as that. When you have a problem with people botting through your game, all it says is that you installed something in the game that should keep the people occupied but they generally hate to do it (aka time sink).

Re:You cannot outlaw bots (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24434577)

The thing is there are some people who will bot a game just to be "better than everyone else". I could name a hundred people who would agree that those people are better, but its nice to be a higher level than everyone else you know. Isnt it. Even without out the self satisfaction of doing it properly.

Bots will exist for games like this whatever. The next real step will be someone making a new bot which from day 1 is open source. That way it cannot be stopped.

Re:You cannot outlaw bots (4, Funny)

foobsr (693224) | about 6 years ago | (#24434607)

"People want to avoid time sinks."

Quote from /. [slashdot.org] .

Well done.

CC.

Re:You cannot outlaw bots (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24434641)

Saying, "people only use bots because the gameplay has problems" is the same as saying "people only speed because the speed limit is lower than the speed they wanted to drive." I learned the hard way that telling that to a cop just makes things worse. On the other hand, I've gotten 9 speeding tickets and I'm only 19 years old. Lucky for me, in Texas, they can't take your license away -- you just have to pay the State an extra couple hundred dollars a year to keep it. I truly believe my driving is justified and my tickets are only the result of the government's inability to make road laws less tedious. So, I guess you could really go both ways on this one.

Re:You cannot outlaw bots (1)

barnyjr (1259608) | about 6 years ago | (#24434817)

I completely agree.

Unfortunately, the very definition of MMORPGs up to this point is: time sink. Oh, and we'll add in some fluffy plot lines that nobody cares about and make press releases about how "immersive" the gameplay is.

Now if people would just make bot software to do my dishes and mow my lawn...

Re:You cannot outlaw bots (1)

DeadManCoding (961283) | about 6 years ago | (#24434879)

Honestly, I love playing WoW. Is it a time sink? Yes. Do I mind spending a couple of hours a night grinding dailies and running instances for gear drops? Not at all. I'm not exactly a social person, and finding a group that actually has a goal makes the game much more fun. I don't mind grinding levels because that's part of the fun for me. If players don't want to grind levels or farm gold, then they need to find a different game. Those activities are built into the game to help accomplish goals.

IMO, those people that "don't want to sit one spot and farm" ruin the game for the rest of us. Damn impatient "instant gratification" idiots who don't understand that if you want something, you have to work for it. Yes, I have gear that I bought. I saved gold to buy gear, and I run instance to get other gear. And when I do get those gear drops, I get that accomplishment, I can look back and say, "Hey, look at what I did." Banning bots enhances my gaming experience. I'm glad that Blizz is actively trying to remove them. When it comes to this lawsuit, I think that they've approached the problem incorrectly. In this case, the end doesn't justify the means. The end result is what I want, but the means by a lawsuit for that result is wrong.

Cancelling my WoW Account (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24434415)

I'm the ideal customer. Rarely play, but every 30 days my account is debited.

Blizzard has crossed an ethical line. Maybe they don't like the guy's software, but asking a court to restrict his freedom of speech is simply wrong.

Yes, publication of source code is a free speech right:

http://news.cnet.com/2100-1023-225508.html&st.ne.fd.tohhed.ni?hhTest=1

Yay... (2, Interesting)

Driador (923291) | about 6 years ago | (#24434507)

It's bnetd [wikipedia.org] all over again. \o/

Too late: here's the source (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24434623)

I don't see what all the fuss is about ... the source code for Glider is 9 bits:

- # -
- - #
# # #

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>