Proposed System for Game Retailers Would Activate Discs at Time of Purchase

June 24, 2009 -

If you purchase your video games from local retailers you’ve no doubt gone through the inconvenience of trying to track down a store associate to release your selection from its display cabinet prison. Or perhaps you’ve dealt with GameStop’s annoying habit of opening games and storing the discs behind the counter.
 
Hey, it’s an imperfect world where people steal stuff so it’s understandable why retailers take measures like this. But what if there was a better way?
 
The Entertainment Merchants Association, a trade association which represents a large segment of North American video game and DVD retailers, thinks it may have a solution which could save the retail industry billions by reducing costs, curbing theft and potentially making the purchasing experience more pleasant for the consumer.
 
The EMA’s solution is “benefit denial” technology that would disable movies and video games until unlocked at the point of sale - sort of like gift cards which have no value until activated by a sales clerk. EMA president Bo Andersen commented on the plan:

It is intuitive that, if we can utilize emerging technology to reduce the shrink in the DVD, Blu-ray discs, and video game categories and eliminate barriers erected to deter shoplifting, consumers will have easier access to the products, additional retail channels will carry these products, and costs will be eliminated from the supply chain.

Baring obstacles such as a lack of accepted standards for such an activation system, the need for staff training, and the cost of implementation, the EMA believes such a solution could debut in late 2010.
 
Via: Gamasutra
 
-Reporting from San Diego, GamePolitics Correspondent Andrew Eisen...


Comments

Re: Proposed System for Game Retailers Would Activate Discs ...

If I wanted your answers to the questions posed to mdo7, what makes you think I'm incapable of including you in their posing?

With all due respect, you've shared your opinions with me before and, just so you know, for what I've found them worth, there's really no need for your continuing to share.

Re: Proposed System for Game Retailers Would Activate Discs ...

I'll let you know when I value your respect.

Re: Proposed System for Game Retailers Would Activate Discs ...

There's no need on my part for you to value my respect (although "all due respect" could well mean that you're due absolutely no respect). It's the unsolicted and unvalued opinions you insist on sharing with me which I can do without. I'd hate to see you continuing to cast your pearls before the swine. But if it makes you feel either good or relevant to do so, then go ahead. It ain't costing me nothing.

Re: Proposed System for Game Retailers Would Activate Discs ...

While that would probably be true, if implemented correctly it would be more trouble than it's worth. (Since for instance cracking the D2D or Steam version would be easier)

However a big benefit that I can see is that software based DRM would not be needed at all, and if all the activation business is done by the salesperson who sells you the game then it would be a better experience for the consumer. Since the product you leave the store with should work just fine without any hidden programs needed or what have you.

Chances are that the publishers will completely ruin the implementation, making it an even worse experience for the consumer than even the most agressive DRM, but I can see this actually work quite well if implemented properly.

Re: Proposed System for Game Retailers Would Activate Discs ...

This would not remove DRM.  All this would be for is to prevent shoplifting.  You would still have DRM with this in place since it would only take one person to purchase the game and put it up a torrent of it.

Re: Proposed System for Game Retailers Would Activate Discs ...

Agreed. Publishers will justify even harsher DRM. Sure it means someone would still have to give them money, but then they'll see every torrent as thousands of lost sales.

"this software has been torrented ten times, and as you lal know one torrent equals a billion people, so this means ten billion sales have been lost"

 
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