Tecmo Settlement [8:31 am]
Leaving for another day the question of whether consumers have the right to modify video-game software they’ve legally purchased, a federal judge last week dismissed a lawsuit by California game maker Tecmo against the proprietors and users of a game-hacking website, after the company quietly settled with the two main defendants.
Tecmo filed the lawsuit in January in a crackdown on NinjaHacker.net, an internet forum where fans created and shared custom content for several Tecmo Xbox titles, including Ninja Gaiden, Dead or Alive 3 and Dead or Alive Xtreme Beach Volleyball. Users had reverse-engineered the games to figure out how to create custom “skins” that changed the appearance of onscreen characters, in some cases rendering the already scantily clad women of Dead or Alive Xtreme Beach Volleyball completely nude.
[...] The lawsuit also targeted up to 100 anonymous users of the website, whose identities Tecmo vowed to unmask earlier this year. Those users were the focus of the settlement talks, said Jason Schultz, an attorney with the nonprofit Electronic Frontier Foundation, which had been tracking the case. According to Schultz, Tecmo insisted that Greiling and Glynn hand over NinjaHacker’s user database to the company as part of any deal. “Tecmo wanted to get the personal identifying information of people who were uploading and downloading skins,” said Schultz. “I don’t know if that was in the final settlement.”
Earlier postings — note that the Internet Archive has images, even though the sites have taken them down.