EA Uses DMCA Takedown on Ultima IV Downloads

March 29, 2011 -

In what has been described by some in the Ultima community as a travesty, EA has used the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) to take down several downloads of Ultima IV. This disruption has affected a number of Ultima IV-related projects including the ultra popular xu4, as well as the Ultima IV Sega Master System emulation from Master System 8 and the IBM-PC port at Phi Psi Software.

One of my all-time favorite Ultima sites, Ultima Aiera, also removed links to many Ultima IV-related projects. The move has incensed Ultima IV fans who thought the game was released as freeware a long time ago. While the game was offered for free thanks to some sites getting permission from Origin Systems a long time ago, EA still owns the rights to the game and can do what they want with it.

Ultima Aiera has a great run down of how the game came to be available freely and why EA still has the right to take the game down from web sites that never bothered to secure permission from original creator Origin Systems.

But the most interesting part of the post are the two first paragraphs:

"Observant Dragons and Dragonettes may have noticed that there has been some…disruption in Ultima 4-related projects of late. For example, both the Master System 8 and Phi Psi Software Flash-based remakes of the game have been taken down. Additionally, both Aiera and xu4 have removed their direct download links for the PC version of the game, and Dino has removed his comprehensive listing of other sites that hosted the same download.

Basically, after about fourteen years (since approximately 1997), Electronic Arts is finally cracking down and issuing DMCA notifications to most — not all! — sites that are hosting the PC version of Ultima 4 for download. This move is not being taken well by many, and people are wondering both why EA is wasting time enforcing copyright on an old game like this, and asking “hey, wasn’t it released as freeware?”

Source: /. by way of Uncharted NES.


Comments

Re: EA Uses DMCA Takedown on Ultima IV Downloads

You know I don't know enough about copyright but I know in trademark areas if you don't defend your mark and let it enter the public domain you eventually lose the right to it.  I wonder if they couldn't argue that Ultima 4 has been left in the public domain for to long for them to suddenly cry foul and demand it to be removed from sites.

Not that I care, I have the disk version, cd version, nes version, hell you name it I might have it somewhere if its Ultima related.  As long as they don't kill the upgrade patch for Ultima 4 (I prefer the Ultima 5 look and feel the patch gives over the original).  And hell maybe they are doing it because they saw Lucas make money off of the Monkey Island Upgrade ... wouldn't upset me if they rereleased Ultima 4 with better graphics and sound (as long as they do like Lucas and make sure the gameplay is exactly the same).

Re: EA Uses DMCA Takedown on Ultima IV Downloads

I wonder if they're even going to try running damage control for this.

Re: EA Uses DMCA Takedown on Ultima IV Downloads

Square hasn't tried when they got bad press for shutting down efforts to revive an IP, EA probably won't.

Re: EA Uses DMCA Takedown on Ultima IV Downloads

EA's lawyers must have had a slow day at the office.

- Left4Dead

Why are zombies always eating brains? I want to see zombies that eat toes for a living. Undead-related pun intended.

- Left4Dead Why are zombies always eating brains? I want to see zombies that eat toes for a living. Undead-related pun intended.

Re: EA Uses DMCA Takedown on Ultima IV Downloads

Oh well, I just bought the 1 through 7 on eBay... like a month ago...

---You are likely to be eaten by a Grue.

---You are likely to be eaten by a Grue.

Re: EA Uses DMCA Takedown on Ultima IV Downloads

Great, another company doing NOTHING with an IP shutting down anyone trying to revive interest in it.

Re: EA Uses DMCA Takedown on Ultima IV Downloads

And what, pray tell, is EA going to do with Ultima IV, besides twiddle their thumbs and piss people off?

Re: EA Uses DMCA Takedown on Ultima IV Downloads

Rumors have been flying around that some group inside EA is in the process of porting the Ultima series to modern systems, like what GOG does.

---You are likely to be eaten by a Grue.

---You are likely to be eaten by a Grue.

Re: EA Uses DMCA Takedown on Ultima IV Downloads

"EA still owns the rights to the game and can do what they want with it."

And apparently this means stomping the hopes, dreams, and work of their fans.  Good move.

Zen aka Jeremy Powers
www.ZensPath.com
Xbox Live Gamertag: "PsychoticZen"
PSN Gamertag: "Zenspath"
Wii System Code: "4919 8280 4221 9114"
3DS System Code: "0860-3238-7260"

Zen aka Jeremy Powers
Editor and Host of the Zenspath Podcast (now on iTunes)
www.ZensPath.com
XBL: "PsychoticZen" PSN: "Zenspath"
Nintendo Network: "Psychoticzen", 3DS: "0860-3238-7260

 
Forgot your password?
Username :
Password :

Shout box

You're not permitted to post shouts.
Wonderkarpi would watch that cause amc11/24/2014 - 5:06pm
MaskedPixelanteBreaking Bugs, new series now in development at AMC. A QA tester for a major game company loses his job when a game launches with major bugs and turns to cooking meth to get by.11/24/2014 - 5:03pm
WonderkarpStar Wars Spinoff is Heist Movie Maybe. Retcons Dark Forces http://www.ign.com/articles/2014/11/24/rumor-2016-star-wars-spin-off-film-is-a-heist-story11/24/2014 - 4:50pm
Wonderkarppersonally, I have no opinion other than the Ferguson Police used ridiculous amounts of force in that situation. Other than that, I wasnt there when it happened, I have zero idea what happened. so I cant say anything.11/24/2014 - 4:43pm
james_fudgeyeah :\11/24/2014 - 4:05pm
WonderkarpOh man. Grand Jury verdict coming from Ferguson11/24/2014 - 3:54pm
Wonderkarpits a nasty "Unable to locate DLC" bug, that affects PS4 owners because you cant redownload DLC without deleting your saved game. And the only way to play the game is to wipe your save. Hours wasted.11/24/2014 - 3:51pm
WonderkarpDay 7 of WWE 2k15's Game Breaking Bugs with no resolution. its as bad as the Halo Servers and Unity's Floating eyes/teeth11/24/2014 - 3:50pm
Wonderkarpgranted, looking for sage advice in youtune comments id like looking for ducks in a desert11/24/2014 - 3:34pm
Wonderkarpoh dearie me, im being harrased. wheres the colbert report when you need it! i need to plug my patreon because everything on the web is litterall11/24/2014 - 3:32pm
MonteEisen, Ya the 3D clone wars started out aweful, but it actually got really good in later seasons. Particularly AFTER Ahsoka grows up a bit and stops being annoying. I Liked how the series ended11/24/2014 - 3:23pm
Andrew EisenI rather liked First Class but while most thought Future Past was pretty good, the trailers made it look awful and I haven't seen it yet. Come to think of it, I've only seen X-Men 1 and 2 and First Class.11/24/2014 - 3:22pm
MaskedPixelantehttp://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=article&id=57310 The biggest shock here is that Bryan Singer is still attatched to direct.11/24/2014 - 3:18pm
Andrew EisenI'm a third from the top. (I stole that joke from a play I did years ago.)11/24/2014 - 3:12pm
MechaCrashUnfortunately, it is not worth the hassle to make another account named "Time" so I can post "haha, of course not" as a shout, but let's pretend I did. For art. And bad comedy.11/24/2014 - 3:11pm
MechaCrashWill our dear Mr. Hornets ever wonder why TvW videos have closed comments? Will he ask himself why anybody thought a GG blocklist needed to be made? Time will tell, my friends. Time will tell.11/24/2014 - 3:11pm
Wonderkarpwell i am a top. lol11/24/2014 - 3:10pm
Andrew EisenThe makeup sex is going to be INCREDIBLE!11/24/2014 - 3:09pm
Wonderkarpstill here, jackass11/24/2014 - 3:08pm
MechaCrashAnd so the GGer storms off in a huff after some minor insults, never once noticing the irony that any woman who does the same despite receiving far worse is called a coward who's afraid of debate.11/24/2014 - 3:04pm
 

Be Heard - Contact Your Politician