ESA gets behind SOPA

Game industry representative body announces support of controversial online piracy bill, pursuing "right balance" to combat content theft.

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Introduced in October, the Stop Online Piracy Act has proven to be a polarizing piece of legislation. And while some of the major players within the game industry have been silent as to their stance on the bill, the Entertainment Software Association believes its passage is in those companies' best interest.

The ESA believes there may be something to SOPA.

In a statement today, the ESA announced its support for SOPA, saying that the game industry requires effective protection against the illegal acquisition of games and those who facilitate it.

As an industry of innovators and creators, we understand the importance of both technological innovation and content protection, and do not believe the two are mutually exclusive. Rogue websites--those singularly devoted to profiting from their blatant illegal piracy--restrict demand for legitimate video game products and services, thereby costing jobs. Our industry needs effective remedies to address this specific problem, and we support the House and Senate proposals to achieve this objective.

We are mindful of concerns raised about a negative impact on innovation. We look forward to working with the House and Senate, and all interested parties, to find the right balance and define useful remedies to combat willful wrongdoers that do not impede lawful product and business model innovation.

As it was first proposed, SOPA would allow the US government and copyright holders to request court orders against websites that are believed to be hosting infringing content. Those who do not comply with the order risk having payment services and advertising channels severed, as well as being removed from search engine results and blacklisted by Internet service providers.

Companies that support the bill--including the Motion Picture Association of America and National Football League--argue that it offers necessary protection to content creators. Opponents of the bill, such as Google, Facebook, Twitter, and the Electronic Frontier Foundation, argue that SOPA infringes upon First Amendment rights and will ultimately deprive the Internet of non-infringing content.

SOPA is also supported by a number of major media corporations, including GameSpot parent company CBS. For more information, check out GameSpot's analysis of the bill.

Discussion

236 comments
cgielen
cgielen

The strange thing about this is that most gamers who download "pirated / cracked" copy's of the games. Are also the ones who buy the most games. All they want is a good image of a game before they buy it. Cause the Demo's those big companies put out are just plain crap. Here let me show you how awesome this particular tiny piece of the game is :D. Then when you buy it you play that part first and after that is just a piece op poo.. Yay thank big "creators" thank you so much for the demo now we actually payed for pirated crapfest =D. If they would put out demo's that you can play for like a day or even 8 hours there wouldn't be much need for piracy really. Cause there mostly big demo's..

marvelx3
marvelx3

These corporations are so full of greed today, they'll sell their soul for a little piece of cash.

VilandasUK
VilandasUK

Go F yourself ESA and take SOPA with you.

chaldoboy14
chaldoboy14

Umm. What!?!? Shouldn't the ESA of all people be against SOPA? This makes no sense. The ESA represents companies that makes games that allow us to freely express ourselves, and hell they even make games that allow us to do that on youtube using their material. Isn't this counter-acting what they're all about? Makes no sense, bunch of idiots probably think it will stop piracy and only piracy. Sounds like someone didn't thoroughly read the bill.

s4dn3s5
s4dn3s5

ESA is a useless POS. Always have been, always will be.

tiggerlu
tiggerlu

Too broad, too powerful - up in Canada we have a similar body in broadcasting named the CRTC which unchecked can pretty much do anything. Who will police SOPA? The answer is nobody at the moment.

Draco11529
Draco11529

ITS NOT JUST PIRACY ITS CENSORING, srry for caps im just so angry. go read small parts of the bill it includes the concerning of some info on the internet

anthonycg
anthonycg

@mogqwai You're missing the point here and gamespot is too... SOPA was not created to deal with pirates. That's just a name they threw on to make it sound good. It was also called an "anti-terrorist act" at one point but that name was removed. SOPA is about government censorship.

mogqwai
mogqwai

Sopa is not only a wrong idea, it won't work anyway. There are ways pirates can transfer files that sopa, or anyone else can't prevent.. things like IRC. If they block them one way they will just find another. This whole idea is just a waste of time and money. Pirates will always thrive when the corporations remain rooted on greed.

IMPACT_17
IMPACT_17

@Gamer-Geek No it didn't, and it won't. Ever.

retroworld3000
retroworld3000

@Gamer-Geek NOT YET you stupid idiot. I think you lost your mind on that one. Do some research!

NeilCardiff
NeilCardiff

@redskinStu I love how ignorant your speed trap analogy is. Obviously you're blissfully unaware of the evidence that speed cameras cause accidents because drivers are concentrating on their speedometer rather than the road. But don't let reality stop you believing only speeders are against them.

NeilCardiff
NeilCardiff

:@jamyskis "OPA is so broadly worded that it could be used to unilaterally cut off funding from any site that the media industry or US government doesn't like." There's no could about it. Like all other laws it is can be abused it will be abused.

SuperDuperHero
SuperDuperHero

Are you serious, Gamer-Geek? If anyone has ever read 1984, guess what, we're living it and this is just the beginning. Don't be surprised when you try and Google search anything detrimental to the US or any of their partners and NOTHING comes up because Google blocked the results and websites from showing up. Welcome to the Police State, everyone.

Gamer-Geek
Gamer-Geek

SOPA has been passed. It's gonna be a bumpy ride.

King-Bart
King-Bart

"SOPA is also supported by a number of major media corporations, including GameSpot parent company CBS" Wouldn't this bill also hurt GameSpot?

moroumenos
moroumenos

You know, I might have a solution. How about if entertainment companies start to sell their stuff for about 5$ a piece instead of robbing us with 20 to 60$ a piece. I'm pretty sure piracy would almost disappear. Like we people think its right to pay a huge amount of money for a disc edition of a blockbuster movie! Actually, at 5$ a piece, they could even beat sales record, because more people would buy it. Anyway, It really makes no sense! This bill is to protect the riches again. LAME! Internet already proved that those distributors are bound to disappear! It's called "progress". And yet, they refused to accept the reality! No wonder why actors of the entertainment industry are against the bill.

bluesteelMeGaSE
bluesteelMeGaSE

Anyone who is for this bill, and any other media copyright bill for that matter, is for monopolization. This is what media companies are seeking to achieve. The Government gets little out of this except some compensation for making laws protecting their interests, but otherwise they get nothing else out of it. They're the instrument, the media companies interested are the players.

Clockout1
Clockout1

Idiots. I'm surrounded by idiots. At least some companies have the sense to see that this is a horrible idea.

conkerton
conkerton

Comment blocked by SOPA- User sued for plagerism, libel, and harrasment for speaking out against someone elses ideas, products, and/or services.

Rayrota
Rayrota

Gee, who could've seen this coming?

ThAdEa82
ThAdEa82

So...who is up for boycotting all software companies that support the esa for what they are trying to do?

ColdExistence
ColdExistence

@WandrianWvlf ESA does whatever it thinks will help maximize the profits of the video game industry. When they try to create laws that make it illegal for a minor to buy M rated games or whatever, the ESA steps in to stop it, but you should never think that they are doing this out of the good of their heart. It's all about the money, and those anti-video game bills aren't good for the business. For some reason, though, they think SOPA is good.

powerman1426
powerman1426

SOPA is a horrible idea, censorship is censorship. There is no due process, it should be declared unconstitutional. Think about how everyone frowns on China's censoring of the internet, or when Egypt tried to shutdown the internet. Is that what we want? (By the way, doesn't seem to work out well over there either by all accounts). There are other ways to deal with the problems besides this heavy handed approach

TheKindlyOne
TheKindlyOne

L'Ore-friggin-al? Concerned Women for America? Tiffany & Co? Why is it that more than 90 percent of these organizations which support the act have virtually nothing to do with the internet? Do they even friggin count? These organisations are run by friggin OLD PEOPLE!!!! QUIT PISSING ME OFF AND GIMME BACK MY INTERNETZ BRO!!!

Rufus_the_rat
Rufus_the_rat

Remember this next time you go rushing to defend the video games industry from its critics. The ESA and the industry it respresents is no better than any other corporate mouthpiece that only looks after its own interests, not the consumer's, and has no use for equality, fair play or charity. The ESA and the game companies behind it would sell you out in a second if they thought they could make a dime off you. And never forget, the ESA includes Electronic Arts, Sony and NINTENDO. So much for loving their fans, ha!

Wandrian
Wandrian

I honestly thought the ESA was a mildly positived organization until now. How horrid.

mike300zxt
mike300zxt

It's been proven that we all have a fixed budget to spend on media, entertainment and games, and the things we do or don't pirate don't affect our budget. I.e. people buy what they value the most, and pirate content they would likely never buy anyways. SOPA is just another way to try and enforce corporate greed. Now we have to pay to mention your company, or use a screenshot, or post a video of our gameplay? It's beyond madness, and it's sad to hear that Gamespot's owners support it.

Crush_Project
Crush_Project

there arent words to describe how low these vermin are. A reckoning is coming for this country, and these people are on the list. Down with big business! long live the revolution!

korlor
korlor

It makes me laugh when American goverment is making the world hate the country even more... I wonder what absolute hell would break loose if this useless and insulting law passes through corrupt greedy and lying goverment... Which i am sure will happen. Call me cynical if you want but this will only trouble.

fillup0
fillup0

This bill will just hurt America. How the hell can the entertainment industry get control over free speech? It shouldn't happen. Because of the crap that is political correctness, the only bastion left for free speech is the internet. If that is gone and nothing else comes along, what have we got?

jamyskis
jamyskis

@FriendBear: In many ways I agree with you, although SOPA is designed to get around the hosting on non-US servers, which is why the rest of the world is so up in arms about it. It's a blatant attempt by the US media industry - and their lackeys in the US government and Congress/House of Reps - to exert their influence on policy worldwide. SOPA effectively bans any US company from doing business with an infringing site. This includes Visa, Mastercard, AmEx, PayPal, Google and any advertising providers. All well and good with regard to sites devoted to piracy, but SOPA is so broadly worded that it could be used to unilaterally cut off funding from any site that the media industry or US government doesn't like.

abcdefgabcdefgz
abcdefgabcdefgz

If this bill passes I am joining the fight for piracy and against our moron politicians. I hope hackers hack all of them.

abcdefgabcdefgz
abcdefgabcdefgz

"We are mindful of concerns raised about a negative impact on innovation. We look forward to working with the House and Senate, and all interested parties, to find the right balance and define useful remedies to combat willful wrongdoers that do not impede lawful product and business model innovation." Who decides what this vague balance crap means? They can just pick any website they want and basically close it.

FriendBear
FriendBear

Even if it passes, nothing will change. People will just host pirated software on non-US servers. The piracy debate has always been a moot point, it does not harm sales. A multitude of gaming magazines have looked into this issue and proved that point, what harms sales is poor quality software. Look at how many sales Skyrim had, and ask yourself how much profit Bethesda has made with Skyrim alone? A way to reduce the amount of piracy would be to lower the cost of the games, soon or later we'll be paying $70 a game...oh wait, in some cases we are. The reason why the government doesn't like piracy is because of one thing, TAX. You can't tax something that is stolen after all, yet the government essentially steals from the people every single day and gets away with it.

THE_DRUGGIE
THE_DRUGGIE

Am I the only one who notices that all the major game companies who said they backed out from supporting the bill are now indirectly supporting it through the ESA's endorsement? Surely I am not alone.

warhawk-geeby
warhawk-geeby

@Kastigador Following up my posts? If someone sends me a direct message in a comment thread (such as yourself) I read it and reply.. What's up with that? I understand all you guys getting in a hoo-har about this SOPA agreement, but it really isn't the be all and end all. If it's as bad as you say it is then it will most likely fail, EPIC games are against so I'm sure more will follow suit. I just find this website hilarious sometimes and the comments people leave. There's being a gaming fan, and then there's the other people.. pretty much extremists of the gaming world. It's their comments which I find amusing. There's other things in life to worry about.

gino_pachino
gino_pachino

eeee sry not hacker =poo but useless hacker =poo (hacker who hack thing like psn or steam hack something usefull like cia or a bank)

TrueProphecy22
TrueProphecy22

At the very most it will stop casual pirates. The vast majority of piracy won't be effected by this. This is the same as stringent DRM, in the end, it only hurts the legitimate consumer.