Notch Responds to Complaints About 'Minecraft' EULA Changes

June 16, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Minecraft creator Markus "Notch" Persson is not happy that some in the Minecraft community have called Mojang "literally worse than EA" after a recent update to the Minecraft end-user agreement. Writing on his personal blog, Notch explained the recent changes to Minecraft's EULA.

The trouble started when Mojang's Erik Broes wrote on Reddit that "you cannot make money with Minecraft without our permission. If you are on a server, your experience should the same as every other player."

Users came to the conclusion that this change meant "all Minecraft servers" that charged for access were outlawed. While Mojang is officially against charging access to Minecraft servers, the developer has never really enforced the rule.

Broes pointed at that time that features affecting gameplay should not be charged for and that Mojang does not allow this either.

"You can charge for hosting servers, but not for gameplay features," Notch clarified via Twitter at the time.

But Broes' attempt to clarify did nothing but cause more confusion, because of the contradictions in Minecraft's EULA and Mojang's relaxed real-world enforcement of the rules. Realizing this Mojang updated its EULA to formalize the stance it was technically already taking.

"Someone saw that the EULA says you can't charge for these things, and asked one of the people working at Mojang about it. That person said that yes, it is indeed against the rules, and then everything exploded," Notch wrote on his blog in response to all the things being said about changes to the EULA.

"A lot of people got the impression that we're changing the EULA somehow to only now disallow these things, but they were never allowed. A lot of people voiced their concerns. A few people got nasty. Someone said we're literally worse than EA."

A FAQ detailing the changes was posted to Mojang's official site at the end of last week which explains how users can monetize the game in a number of new ways. The new policy allows players to charge for server access, accept donations, include in-game advertising or sponsorship and sell in-game items that don't affect gameplay. Cosmetic items like costumes, hats and pets are acceptable according to Mojang's FAQ.

"Swords, invincibility potions, and man-eating pigs are not. We want all players to be presented with the same gameplay features, whether they decide to pay or not."

Paid-for in-game currency is also banned.

"These are new exceptions to the EULA," Notch concluded. "All of these make the rules more liberal than things were before. People are still asking me to change back to the old EULA. That makes me sad."

Source: Eurogamer

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Re: Notch Responds to Complaints About 'Minecraft' EULA Changes

Hey, guess what? The EULA I accepted in Alpha said I could monetize if I wanted and that I had access to all game updates forever. Since I don't have to go through the EULA to get those, you can't enforce any new EULA on us anyway. Now, where's our full modding API which was part of the selling point why so many bought it in alpha?

Re: Notch Responds to Complaints About 'Minecraft' EULA Changes

I threw up a question on the GameLawyer AMA on /r/gamedev/  I'll link over to it if he comes back with anything interesting on this topic.

Re: Notch Responds to Complaints About 'Minecraft' EULA Changes

For the things that are not allowed in the EULA, server runners will likely keep doing it, and more than likely Mojang won't do anything about it. It's more of a scare tactic than anything else.

I've known servers to sell rocket boots, to access to secondary worlds, or even a request for some world edit done by a moderator. But the biggest thing about that is that for the most part, those aren't in the game, (or atleast weren't, since world edit was recently added). They were added by mods or plugins for the server.

I don't know how much legal hold Mojang would have against people who limited access to those, since technically, even though it's within their game, it's technically not their work that is adding them in.

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Re: Notch Responds to Complaints About 'Minecraft' EULA Changes

Like he could stop them.....

 
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