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Blizzard Going After WoW Related iPhone Apps

Soulskill posted more than 4 years ago | from the anything-you-can-app-we-can-app-better-in-a-few-years dept.

Cellphones 87

An anonymous reader writes "Apparently Blizzard is going after developers making iPhone apps for World of Warcraft (free and otherwise) by giving them cease-and-desist orders. As Mike Schramm says 'Blizzard may be planning to do more with the iPhone,' but 'It would be a real shame if Blizzard legal was simply going after fans who have invested a lot of time and effort into these apps even when there's no clear reason for them to do so.'" It's interesting that they're doing so around the same time a video for a (rumored, alleged, unconfirmed — take your pick) iPhone client for World of Warcraft has been floating around.

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They didn't start (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27806989)

They didn't start with this until after people started charging for them.

Re:They didn't start (1)

Cyberllama (113628) | more than 4 years ago | (#27808157)

Not actually true, they did this to the very first app that came out (it was just a simple app for fetching character info off the armory) and it was free -- that was some time ago. I remember the app's author posted that he was asked by Blizzard to remove the app (not sure if they actually used a C&D letter) and he complied.

Re:They didn't start (1)

fractoid (1076465) | more than 4 years ago | (#27813343)

So how is an iPhone app different from any one of the 3rd party Armory/Talent replacements? Hell, wowhead.com has had a talent calculator up for years, and it's *still* better than the official Blizzard one, and I haven't heard anything about them getting C&D'd. ArmoryLite.com has likewise had characters' profiles cached and displayed for ages.

Perhaps not surprising given the size of the company now, but Blizzard's legal team is getting as inconsistent and stupid as Microsoft's.

Re:They didn't start (1)

dontPanik (1296779) | more than 4 years ago | (#27841965)

The difference is that Blizzard doesn't make money off having a talent calculator on their site. Yes, it's useful, but ultimatley if you use their's or someone else's, they don't care.
On the other hand, if they release an iPhone app (which it seems they will), any competition will lose them money because that's not money going into their pocket from app sales.

Re:They didn't start (1)

fractoid (1076465) | more than 4 years ago | (#27842005)

Good point, actually - sort of like J.K. Rowling and her endorsement of, then subsequent legal action against, that online Harry Potter encyclopaedia. It's cool to offer a free service that complements a popular product, but if it's something they could get around to charging for then they don't like it quite so much.

Also, as someone pointed out below, it may be more to do with the fact that the app actually (I believe) had the name 'Warcraft' in the title, which is a clear copyright issue. Blizzard's always been very proactive about protecting its trademarks.

Dear Blizzard... (1)

f8l_0e (775982) | more than 4 years ago | (#27806995)

Less focus on this crap, MORE focus on Star Craft II. The fscking game has was announce over two years ago. I'm still pissed off about the cancellation of Ghost. There is enough revenue coming in on WoW now. Please don't forget about your customers who don't give a damn about WoW. Thank you.

Re:Dear Blizzard... (4, Insightful)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807043)

Why? Sorry to be blunt, but why?

Starcraft II, or any game, would be a risk. A tiny risk, granted, because it will be a seller, no doubt. But why should they shift the focus off something that is simply and plainly a cash cow.

Blizzard is, after all, a profit oriented organisation. They will do what makes them cash. I know, they are held in a better esteem than Sony or EA, but at the end of the day, they're in for the same reason these others are: Money.

Milking WoW for all it's worth. (2)

narfspoon (1376395) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807079)

Milking WoW for all it's worth is a fine strategy for a company. But there comes a time when you want to play the game and enjoy it but you can't because fan-based stuff gets shut down, bugs, crashes, oh god the bugs and crashes, lag, and general lack of updates make you sit there waiting in Dalaran all day until you are allowed to "have fun".

Re:Milking WoW for all it's worth. (1)

pwfffff (1517213) | more than 4 years ago | (#27815331)

Wow, you're really being held at gunpoint, forced to sit in Dalaran, ALL DAY? That must be terrible. I mean, the rest of us just stop playing when we get bored, or we maybe start a new character. But being FORCED to play? AND you have to stay in one city?! Horrible.

Did you have to pay extra to get the Blizzard employee come threaten you with force?

Some questions:
What absolutely essential fan-made tool or site what shut down?
Why haven't you figured out how to work the quality slider in the video options page?
What super-mega-ultra-awesome guild are you running with to have already completed all the content they JUST released?

I know some people just like to complain, but you sir really take the cake when it comes to bitching about nothing.

Re:Dear Blizzard... (1, Insightful)

f8l_0e (775982) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807267)

That's a perfectly reasonable question. As I mentioned before, the game was announced over two years ago. At the time of the announcement, they had in game video of the game that must have been at least (and I mean the very least) 9 months of development. That seems like a lot of R&D wasted if they don't plan on releasing the game. The FAQs on their site mention all kinds of reasons for delay, like balancing races and game mechanics. In my opinion, they shouldn't have announced the game until these details were worked out. Those are not minor details, they ARE the game. Game studios seem to be falling into the same trap as movie studios these days. Special effects and cutting edge graphics have become more important than the story/gameplay. I think Blizzard puts itself at more of a risk by not releasing SCII by disenfranchising those of us who have waited a long time for a sequel.

It's normal for Blizzard, though (5, Insightful)

Moraelin (679338) | more than 4 years ago | (#27808325)

Well, you seem to forget that this is actually normal for Blizzard. They'll tweak the game until they consider it to be right, and that sometimes means 2 years past the planned release date.

I'm not even saying this as a bad thing. In the end, that's their main secret sauce. They're the guys who would agree with you that balancing the races and the game mechanics isn't just details, it's the game. Most others would (be bullied by the publisher to) shove it out the door now, and maybe patch it later.

I mean, think about it. What did WoW have that, say, EQ2 didn't have, as both launched in the same year? I can't think of anything major that Blizzard invented, other than the "rested xp" bar, and we could debate all evening if that counts as "major". Blizzard simply took the time to polish the turd, so to speak, and it paid off.

What set their RTS apart, since you mention Starcraft II? Make no mistake, Starcraft came out in an age where there were about as many "me too" RTS produced by everyone and their grandma, as there were "me too" FPS. There was everything out there, from fantasy to SF to historical. Again, it seems to me like all Blizzard did was actually give it a good long tweak and polish before it got released.

So I wouldn't be praying for them to do a rush job this time. If they feel that it still needs more tweaking, so be it.

Re:It's normal for Blizzard, though (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27811813)

"actually give it a good long tweak and polish before it got released."

Yeah, I usually gotta give it a good long tweak and polish before I release too.

Re:Dear Blizzard... (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 4 years ago | (#27816567)

Would you prefer if they shoved it out the door as soon as the killer bugs are out and the game is more or less stable and playable, with no semblance of anything that could be remotely considered balance, so everyone plays just ONE side and uses ONE kind of units because they represent the I-win button?

Because that's the alternative. You will not see studios go silent and mull over games for years, then release a new oh-so-wonderful gem of computer game art. This just does not happen. Any studio that tried went bankrupt or got bought out when their stock went down into the holes.

Then their pretty decent games were grabbed, new management (*cough*EA*cough) saw "hey, it compiles, its killer bugs are out, it's more or less stable and playable..."

Re:Dear Blizzard... (1)

Daswolfen (1277224) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807457)

A risk, yeah.. but when you consider that Starcraft is a national sport in Korea, they are going to make money on it. Besides, its only been two years (and I am pretty sure it will be out this holiday season with an announcement at BlizzCon)... That is nothing in Blizzard game development time.

Re:Dear Blizzard... (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 4 years ago | (#27816619)

So it's a professional sport in Korea, and that means ... what exactly for Blizzard?

Do you think that ... whatever company makes footballs could exist only on the ones sold for NFL games? Maybe a bad example since those balls will probably cost more than the eggs you can buy in your local sports store, but those "pro gamers" from Korea do not pay a single cent more for the game.

Re:Dear Blizzard... (1)

LuxMaker (996734) | more than 4 years ago | (#27808477)

Why you ask? Because there is a chance you can lose your IP if you do not actively protect it.

Re:Dear Blizzard... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27812221)

There is no such thing as IP. There is copyright, trademarks, patents, industrial design rights and trade secrets and they are all very different concepts with different laws governing them.

You can't lose copyright by not protecting it.
You (generally) can't lose a patent by not protecting it but there are some anti-submarine rules that apply in very special cases with malicious intent.
You can lose a trademark by not protecting it, if it has become generic speech etc. However it would be enough diligence to assert that these iphone applications attribute trademarks owned by Blizzard to Blizzard.

Re:Dear Blizzard... (1)

rm999 (775449) | more than 4 years ago | (#27810093)

There are two things I can think of. First, Blizzard can clearly make a lot of profit from Starcraft II, probably with a better profit margin than the industry average. If they can't afford the man-power, they can can afford to hire more people and still make an above-average profit.

Second, the value of the brand will begin decreasing at some point, at least in the US. Starcraft came out ten years ago, and many of its original fans are now in their 30s and won't have time for new games. Blizzard may be losing more and more of these customers every year; now Blizzard needs to convince the next generation of 15 year olds to start playing Starcraft. Problem is, these kids won't regard the Starcraft brand as highly as the previous generation did.

Re:Dear Blizzard... (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 4 years ago | (#27816661)

No, they'll probably think it's a starfaring expansion for World of Warcraft and be pretty pissed. :)

Re:Dear Blizzard... (3, Insightful)

Bieeanda (961632) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807171)

Um, dude? Blizzard is a big company. You know, multiple teams of developers, working on different and unrelated titles? A legal team that has jack and squat to do with development? They're not just some five-man mod team that's getting distracted with flame wars.

And before anyone claims that they should funnel developers from WoW to SC2, you're on Slashdot. That means you should know that faster development isn't a matter of shoving more developers into a meat grinder of code.

Re:Dear Blizzard... (1)

Wyatt Earp (1029) | more than 4 years ago | (#27848969)

Microsoft did that, they shoveled developers from the Mac group to Vista so they could get Vista out on time, which delayed Mac Office. That didn't work so well.

Apple did the same thing to get the iPhone out on time, which delayed the Mac OS release.

Re:Dear Blizzard... (0)

brkello (642429) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807507)

Um, they are working on Starcraft 2. They have always taken forever to release a game...polishing it like crazy. As far as the ghost thing went, that wasn't their fault. The other company working on it screwed it up massively. By the time it came back to Blizzard, the whole thing was scrapped because it was so dated being developed for the last gen consoles. I think your assumption that they only care about WoW is off. They just take a long time perfecting their games.

Re:Dear Blizzard... (1)

KneelBeforeZod (1527235) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807703)

Yes, that's something of a minor problem with Blizzard. Although they never push out a game before its ready (like Age of Conan). On the other hand, taking a very long time making a game is a) going to be expensive and b) the technology to play on is constantly changing. And when you've finally put the product on the street, there's still no guarantee that it'll be a success. That said, I'm going to buy SC2

Re:Dear Blizzard... (1)

fractoid (1076465) | more than 4 years ago | (#27813355)

The fscking game has was announce over two years ago.

And I'd be happy if they took 2 more years on it if they felt they needed to. You know why? Because I want it to be good enough that I'm still playing it in 2020, just like the original Starcraft was good enough that it's still fun to play now.

2007 calling (-1, Troll)

Gothmolly (148874) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807081)

WoW is still relevant?

Re:2007 calling (1)

Grave (8234) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807099)

2007? WoW has twice as many subscribers as it did at the start of 2007.

Re:2007 calling (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27807205)

And three times as many juveniles as it did before.

Re:2007 calling (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27807233)

No wonder this country<strike>'s economy</strike> is going into the shitter. It's beacause the post baby boomer youth are frittering away their lives.

Today's word is: descend

Re:2007 calling (2, Insightful)

Devout_IPUite (1284636) | more than 4 years ago | (#27808259)

Hi. What's your hobby? It sounds like a fucking waste of time to me though, just a preemptive FYI. (No, I don't play WoW, I quit, but I don't use my old WoW time being productive, I entertain myself with other also useless things).

Re:2007 calling (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27807243)

That number is about to drop significantly. The company in China running the servers there is about to end its deal with Blizzard.

Re:2007 calling (1)

narfspoon (1376395) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807297)

Blizzard has said that the licence has been moved from The9.com to NetEase.com. I don't know how they handle character migration across servers but the game won't disappear completely.

Re:2007 calling (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27807445)

Thanks for the clarification (same anon poster).

Re:2007 calling (2, Funny)

AuMatar (183847) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807479)

Does it matter? I thought all Chinese players already moved to EU/US servers to gold farm.

Re:2007 calling (1)

brkello (642429) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807533)

Being goth is still relevant? Kind of a stupid statement since it is a game that has had continual development over those years.

Re:2007 calling (2, Funny)

narfspoon (1376395) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807539)

Some of my friends who still play admit to spending more time playing Peggle or Bejeweled inside of WoW than actually farming or PVP.

Re:2007 calling (1)

Devout_IPUite (1284636) | more than 4 years ago | (#27808271)

Before I quit I was playing almost exclusively for mount collection... Then they took two reward mounts out with the last patch so I quit. :-/

Really worth going after? (1)

SailorSpork (1080153) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807113)

From Blizzard's point of view, is it really worth going after? If they put out an official iPhone client, a lot of people are going to drop the (at worst) buggy and (at best) unsupported unofficial clients for the latest and greatest Blizzard one. It's worth more to them to keep their customers happy then to be The Source for an iPhone ap that they'll like;y not even break even on developing and maintaining (since clients themselves are usually, what, free?), unless they plan on charging an arm and a leg for it (above and beyond the other arm and leg it costs your for your monthly fees).

Re:Really worth going after? (1)

DurendalMac (736637) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807153)

These aren't clients. WoW Characters is on my iPhone. It's a handy app for checking the WoW Armory. I can't think of a single reason why Blizz should tell this free app to stop, nor can I think of any possible or valid legal or civil grounds to do so. Fuck Blizzard for this, the fucking assholes.

Re:Really worth going after? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27807211)

If you can't think of a legal reason for the owners of the Warcraft trademark to go after a program called "warcraft characters", it's not because there is none. It's because you don't know shit about the law.

Re:Really worth going after? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27807245)

Read about trademark laws [wikipedia.org]. In order to maintain their rights on the WoW & Warcraft trademarks, they have to enforce it. That generally leads to Cease & Desist letters.

Nominative use; proceed and permit (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807319)

Read about trademark laws.

Read about nominative use [wikipedia.org]. If you have developed a product or service Y that is compatible with another company's product or service X, it's OK to say Y is compatible with X as long as you don't imply that the maker of X endorses Y.

In order to maintain their rights on the WoW & Warcraft trademarks, they have to enforce it. That generally leads to Cease & Desist letters.

Not always; it could be a proceed and permit letter [darrenbarefoot.com].

Re:Nominative use; proceed and permit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27807803)

You know, there actually is a difference between "saying Y is compatible with that Warcraft thingy" and naming it "Wacraft Y".

Re:Nominative use; proceed and permit (2, Interesting)

mysidia (191772) | more than 4 years ago | (#27808541)

When the title is "Warcraft Arena Calculator"

This implies that the maker endorses it.

It doesn't say "Arena Calculator", with "Warcraft compatible" in the description.

It's using the trademark as if it was a Blizzard Warcraft product, and this will definitely cause confusion.

Blizzard has to defend their mark, or Warcraft might eventually get declared a generic name.

Cease and desist doing what? (3, Insightful)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#27808909)

When the title is "Warcraft Arena Calculator"

This implies that the maker endorses it.

In which case, the proper response is "cease and desist using our trademark in a confusing manner", not "cease and desist developing your product under any name".

Re:Really worth going after? (1)

guyminuslife (1349809) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807925)

Unfortunately, the places where the cease and desist letters are posted all seem to be down. IANAL, but if they're going after the trademark, then that would be defensible. If they go after an app called "Mulana's Rating Calculator" (or whatever), then I have no freaking clue what interest or grounds they'd have to enforce it. Copyright on derivative works? Sounds like a legally fuzzy area.

see MMOGlider (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27807663)

If you are selling some aimed at WoW expect Blizzard to sue you. If you make something free aimed at WoW and someone starts charging for something similar expect Blizzard to sue you unless they can use the TOU to shut you down. IMO its going to be a while yet before the full impact of MMOGlider is realized.

Past experiences with WoWarmory.com (1)

narfspoon (1376395) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807185)

Judging from my past experiences with WowArmory.com, I'd hope they let the alternate sites/software stay up. WowArmory seems to break itself on scripting and suffer lag/loading issues over the years. Whenever it acts up, I just use armorylite.com or other sites that take snapshots of the real WowArmory. It's not "cheating" or "hacking server/character data". But it's a lifesaver when I need to lookup info on a character and the official site is sluggish. Same thing can be said for the offical WoW forums. The search function rarely worked in the past. Everyone I talked to also shared the same experience in that their forum software worked poorly. Why is it that people choose 3rd party mods for displaying Raid Frames, quest trackers, and other things that Blizzard assimilated/copied from older mods? Even though I have to update 3rd party mods myself, they do the job better.

Great, Something Else Drivers Have To Worry About (2, Funny)

CyberSlammer (1459173) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807295)

Officer: "Do you realize how fast you were going?"

40-Year Old Virgin: "But officer!! I was two hits from leveling up my Wizard and I didn't have time to stop for the light!!!"

Re:Great, Something Else Drivers Have To Worry Abo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27812765)

Officer: "Do you realize how fast you were going?"

40-Year Old Virgin: "But officer!! I was two hits from leveling up my Wizard and I didn't have time to stop for the light!!!"

Officer: "Hits? You're meleeing with your wizard? Stupid nub. Learn to play."

Blizzard is just another business like NFL or NBA (0)

tyrr (306852) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807313)

Blizzard is welcome to do with its property whatever it pleases.
In a way Blizzard is no different than the NFL. Heck, the NFL does not let people play with the game statistics halting fantasy league applications.
Fans have to remember that they are just the consumers of someone else's product. It is not about sports. It is not about role playing. It is simply a product that is sold on the market. All you do is buy into it.

Re:Blizzard is just another business like NFL or N (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27807605)

People like you just "accepting" this as reality is the only reason it is allowed to continue. Stand up for yourself, recognize bullshit for what it is, call these assholes on it, and refuse to be a good little corporate slave.

Remember, these companies have bought the overreaching copyright/trademark/DMCA laws that benefit them. They deserve no respect.

Re:Blizzard is just another business like NFL or N (1, Insightful)

Devout_IPUite (1284636) | more than 4 years ago | (#27808337)

IP is still a blanket evil with the small exception of company names and logos (a la trademark).

Old story (1)

Krneki (1192201) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807393)

It's the old story of open approach vs closed one.

I like WoW because it allows me to play it the way I want, but other players hate me because thanks to this I have an advantage over them.

WoW is trying to balance this, but in the pursuit of making more people happy they are limiting others.

Re:Old story (1)

narfspoon (1376395) | more than 4 years ago | (#27807469)

There's a line they cross though.

A 3rd-party mod that helps you do better damage rotations or gives a raid warning when deep breaths occur or an opponent's PVP trinket is on cooldown is different from an iPhone app that checks wowarmory.com.

Game mods that directly influence playing the game versus meta-gaming mods that sort information outside the wow servers. And then you have stuff like Auctioneer that sort of straddles both sides.

Re:Old story (2, Insightful)

Devout_IPUite (1284636) | more than 4 years ago | (#27808357)

And the real solution to this is to make different server settings for different communities.

What? There are people who enjoy the idea of botting? Let them run bots of Gnomergan. What? There are people who hate all mods? Okay, no mods on Onyxia. What? There are people who want death to be permanent? Okay, death kills you for good on Deadmines.

Tada.

Wow! Way to be behind Slashdot! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27807405)

This is old news. Give us something interesting, like the end of Noblegarden, Karatechop's ban, or even whatever the latest nonsense regarding the WoWMatrix/Curse/WoWinterface struggle!

Re: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27807717)

After the win against WoWGlider in court, Blizzard has gotten alot of air, too much perhaps.

Re: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27807837)

IMO this isn't nearly as interesting as the Carbonite thing which, when you look closely, really pushes the limits of what a company can/should be able to do.

And Why.... (1, Interesting)

anlprb (130123) | more than 4 years ago | (#27808261)

Is the Apple silo so vaulted for the iphone? Isn't this what the Android model can help avoid? Sure, you won't get the program in the marketplace, but you sure can host it in another country where the C&D doesn't mean much and keep on innovating. Umm... Unless Blizzard forgot, these are people who are making free publicity and advertising for their pay application. Wouldn't you want to "integrate" the app into someone's life to ensure that when the time comes to cut the budget in the household, that is one of the last things to be cut? I would figure a better way to do it would be to say "listen, thanks for the free pub... We want it to look a little more like things, OK?" Do that, you get good will AND you get a more readily integrated subscriber who is less reticent about removing the Blizzard line item from his/her budget.

Re:And Why.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27819857)

Blizzard doesn't get paid for Open Source.

Just keep on pumping your money into a game that could be translated to a dos box.

Anybody that is enough of a tool and dumb enough to play WoW deserves to have a big corporation take all of their money.

No leg to stand on. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27808539)

  simple, this is nothing more than a VPN type of transmission from THEIR LEGAL COPY and their iPhone. Blizzard does not have any legal right to tell them as much as which computer their software.

  Just silly and it seems like some department is trying to justify their existence or their pay

OK so... (2, Interesting)

JustNiz (692889) | more than 4 years ago | (#27808633)

Say I write an app that does not use or distrubute any Blizzard content, nor does it use their API. The app does not use "Warcraft" in the name. It might store, calculate or reproduce information related to Wow that I have originated or collected solely from non-Blizzard sources that have already OK'd my use of it.
I cannot see how Blizzard can have any legal case to stop me selling my app.
That would be like McDonalds having a legal right to prevent me from selling my own original hamburger recipe, even though I have never worked for, or signed anything with, McDonalds.

Re:OK so... (1)

DaveV1.0 (203135) | more than 4 years ago | (#27809835)

Say I write an app that does not use or distrubute any Blizzard content... It might store, calculate or reproduce information related to Wow that I have originated or collected solely from non-Blizzard sources

Where did those "non-Blizzard sources" get their data?
If the data is about one's character(s), then the data is directly related to and covered by agreements with Blizzard. Would you like to bet that all third party sources for in-game information have an agreement with Blizzard stating that Blizzard maintains the right to control distribution of the data? The fact is that the data orginates with Blizzard and so Blizzard has the copyright for the data.

I suggest you read the License and Terms of Service, along with any API licenses.

Re:OK so... (1)

JustNiz (692889) | more than 4 years ago | (#27817897)

What happens if the person that wrote the app never installed wow or even played wow? Admittedly unlikely but that would mean they could not have accepted or even saw a licencing agreement, as its only a click-through when you install/play.
Actually I thought that the whole click-through EULA thing had already been legally undermined years ago.

Re:OK so... (1)

DaveV1.0 (203135) | more than 4 years ago | (#27818629)

That is irrelevant. The will also be licenses for the data used by the websites the application accesses. The idea is that Blizzard controls access and distribution of the data that makes up the game.

I suggested looking at the game EULA as it will have a lot of the same restriction on distribution of data.

Re:OK so... (1)

jonwil (467024) | more than 4 years ago | (#27811943)

If your app has information (e.g. stats etc) about a "giant battleaxe of doom" (or whatever), no matter where YOU got it from, ultimately the source of the info has to be from the game itself.

Re:OK so... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27816167)

They do not trademark every item they introduce to the game. As such, any copyright breach would be committed by the "sources" of information, not by a developer of the site, especially if the latter did not accept EULA and ToU.

The text of the item description might or might not be subject of a copyright, but individual words (such as "intellect") are not copyrightable. Just juggling them around inside item description would put Blizzard on very shaky legal ground.

The Day Blizzard Dies... (1)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 4 years ago | (#27808657)

The day Blizzard dies (all companies eventually fall to newer, better competitors) I will not shed a tear. It's sad to me that such an arrogant, litigation happy, customer-bashing company has succeeded as well as it has to this point.

Re:The Day Blizzard Dies... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27810827)

I'm pretty sure it's the success that has made them the way they are. Pre-WoW, they were a totally different (and better) company.

Re:The Day Blizzard Dies... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27812375)

They create awesome games, dont have insane draconian DRM, dont milk their franchises too much, their sequels are BETTER than their prequels (so they dont exploit their fanbase), they will NOT release crap (EA 200x), they arent a bunch of stuck up moneymakers (re:april fools joke). What the hell are you complaining about? its not their fault they're so good they got you addicted to WoW/SC.

storm before the shower? (1)

shayaant (1546543) | more than 4 years ago | (#27809009)

why is blizzard so cold? With all the open source development whether it be googles sketchup, or microsoft xna free developing resources, open source is def the way of the future. But blizzard is obviously retarted like many big companies today. can someone please slap me cause im going crazy with all these big companies doing what they want?

Re:storm before the shower? (2, Funny)

VGPowerlord (621254) | more than 4 years ago | (#27810875)

why is blizzard so cold?

Because it's a frickin' blizzard!

What's next, "why is the sun so hot?"

Blizzard does not have a clue (4, Insightful)

phlegmboy (1067452) | more than 4 years ago | (#27810441)

Blizzard does not have a clue about customer relations. I play Eve Online and there are a number of player developed applications such as Evemon and Eve Fitting Tool which not only have the name of the game in their title but make use of an API system developed by CCP that allows these apps to connect to the servers and get information such as currently training skills, assets and their locations, the status of research or ship, module or ammunition building jobs, etc. CCP also release a database which contains information on all the ships, modules, etc so that people that create the player made apps can have the correct information for the modules and ships, such as their bonuses, etc. The whole idea is to work with your player base rather than be a bunch of whiny bitches like Blizzard. Players will always try to create apps based around their MMOG. Blizzard should wake up to this and work with their player base (although I bet most of the "players" are nothing more than gold farmers), instead of against it.

Most of their players are gold farmers? (2, Insightful)

Petersko (564140) | more than 4 years ago | (#27812763)

"Blizzard should wake up to this and work with their player base (although I bet most of the "players" are nothing more than gold farmers), instead of against it."

Oh yeah, that makes perfect sense. There's a small base of legitimate players paying the salaries of millions of gold farmers.

Let's guess 30 cents an hour per worker (just a guess), and the account is used 24 hours a day in shifts, so... $7.20 in wages per day. I'll assume by "most", that you meant 75% of the players are gold farmers, and by players I assume you mean accounts.

75% of 11 million is 8,250,000 accounts. So daily wages will run you $59,400,000.

That means that the remaining 2,750,000 accounts have to pay $21.60 to the gold farmers each and every day.

Naturally that can't be true. So you begin to peel back your variables until you admit the math doesn't work.

Most of the players cannot be gold farmers. Most of them have to be legitimate players.

Re:Blizzard does not have a clue (1)

brkello (642429) | more than 4 years ago | (#27816083)

Uh huh, right. Have they allowed you to change your skills from a website yet? Have they allowed you to queue multiple skills yet? Really, they have to do whatever they can to keep customers. They only have what...60k active subscribers? And they do plenty to piss off the players by either catering to the casuals, catering to the hardcore, helping players cheat, etc. And how many Eve players are actually just bots doing tedious tasks like mining?

Re:Blizzard does not have a clue (1)

Cornflake917 (515940) | more than 4 years ago | (#27816849)

Blizzard does not have a clue about customer relations.

Their number of subscribers and customers would lead me to believe otherwise.

There are plenty of websites out there that have all the information you could ever want about WoW, and then some. Besides, Blizzard doesn't need to outsource development of secondary apps to amateur developers, because they have extremely talented developers in house that can do a much better job. Also, you completely ignore the fact that Blizzard provides a scripting language for users to completely customize their GUI (too bad Eve doesn't have this because it's GUI is atrocious). So don't give me this bullshit that Blizzard doesn't work with their customers.

Sad, too bad (1)

hesaigo999ca (786966) | more than 4 years ago | (#27814557)

I find it really sad, I would have liked to have tried glidder, it would have made my life simpler, but now I can't even get an Iphone app that at least let's me know when my AH item has been sold...or when I should log on, before I lose that email someone sent me a while back....sheesh.

Functionality (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27815997)

I've been trying to think of what they can have on an hand held platform that would actually be worthwhile. So far nothing comes to mind except for perhaps watching auction house prices. Anyone have any ideas?

WoW Sucks anyway (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27819673)

Wow, the system specs must be incredible to run WoW if it will run on an iPhone.

10 million subscribers. Hahahaha. That tells you how dumb people on this planet are getting when 10 million people are dumb enough to get this game and pay $15 a month.

Reasons:
Graphics: This runs on an iPhone. Proof is in the pudding.

Controls: They hacked the controls based off of legacy MMO's like pre-NGE SWG. Now that is pretty bad.

Sound: Ok, they have good sound.

StoryLine: Doesn't really matter. Of all of the WoW players (most of my friends), not one person can tell me the story outside of there being a war between the alliance and the horde (funny how they decided to not do it like warcraft 3 and have alliance races combined instead of just humans).

With how many better MMO's there are out there, the only reason why people play this game is because of how many other people are on it, but they are failing to realize that the game sucks.

And yes, this is coming from a 3 year vet of WoW.

I played WoW on the weekends and was pretty into it when I shifted from SWG to WoW.

Can 10 million people be wrong? Yes, they can.

Play a real game noobs.

its all about money (1)

Msutc201 (1548171) | more than 4 years ago | (#27834117)

I think it's a means by Blizzard to make sure the general public isn't making money off of any of their products, especially WoW. I don't agree however with their decision and I believe that fans making iPhone apps would only increase the overall popularity of WoW or other Blizzard games.
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