Morrowind 2011 Mod Compilation Threatened

Morrowind 2011 is an extremely large compilation of Morrowind assembled by Tyler Smith of Alberta, who also went to the trouble of creating an incredibly detailed guide on how to get the compilation to work. It was aimed at making Morrowind a lot prettier, making it appeal to the mainstream in 2011, and ensuring that the majority of people interested in it would be capable of installing and enjoying Morrowind with these mods.

Anyone who has tried their hand at modding Morrowind knows that it’s a giant pain in the arse to get all mods working together without issues. Last time I played Morrowind I spent a good 13 hours in modding, before I actually got around to playing the damned game. I mention this because Tyler’s effort needs to be applauded; a lot of modders create fantastic material but have a rather “my way or die in a fire” attitude to getting their stuff working which can be highly frustrating for a novice modder. Besides that, not everyone is willing to spend 13 hours preparing before they can play a game, even if they did know how to make it all work without it blowing up in their face.

Unfortunately it seems that some of the authors of the mods included in this compilation were not as pleased with the effort. The day after the mod collection was turned over to the public, Tyler reported on Reddit that he had began to receive complaints and threats of legal action from various mod authors along with demands that he take the package offline. He was also banned and IP blocked from Bethesda’s Morrowind forums. And to rub salt in the wound, someone even went to the trouble of contacting his ISP to get him cut from the internet. (Talk about taking things a little too far?)

Tyler started to update the credits of his compilation in an effort to appease the mod authors, but the ones causing trouble didn’t seem interested in reaching a middle ground. One particularly annoyed mod author said that “the list of credits is largely irrelevant” and “The bottom line is that your compilation violates copyright law in about a dozen countries and a vast majority of the authors whose work was included aren’t happy about it.” as well as “Fixing the credits, nice as it may be, doesn’t solve the issue of the whole package being illegal.”

Illegal, eh? Well it’s really quite a conclusion to leap to without providing any backup so let’s briefly examine the relevant law.  First off, the dispute concerns the complilation of a set of mods to which the original authors potentially hold no copyright in the first place (obviously jurisdiction is an issue depending on the location of the servers where the alleged infringement occurred, so I am taking US law as the example) as, being derivative works, copyright would not be granted to the mod authors unless they can show sufficient “originality” to warrant their own copyright protection.1 This is not something which can or should be decided de facto by the mod author, Bethesda or anybody else; if there’s a dispute it’s surely for the courts to decide before remedial action is taken!

Even if we assume that the mod authors do in fact hold copyright, by removing the download link to the compilation there is no longer a breach of that copyright. Simply writing instructions on how to get one piece of software to run compatibly with another is certainly not copyright infringement.

And even if that could be held to be copyright infringement, the fair use defense means that liability would likely not be proven in any event.  When Nintendo pursued Game Genie for allowing players to customise Nintendo games, by editing things such as character stats, the appellate court held that “a party who distributes a copyrighted work cannot dictate how that work is to be enjoyed. Consumers may use … a Game Genie to enhance a Nintendo Game cartridge’s audiovisual display in such a way as to make the experience more enjoyable.” 2 This can quite clearly be directly compared to Tyler modifying the original mods in such a way as to make them run compatibly.

Taking it a step further, the court has even ruled that “where disassembly is the only way to gain access to the ideas and functional elements embodied in a copyrighted computer program and where there is a legitimate reason for seeking such access, disassembly is a fair use of the copyrighted work, as a matter of law.” 3 So even by further modifying the original mods in order to make them run compatibly – certainly a legitimate reason for doing so – Tyler has surely acted within the bounds of fair use already set by the court.

So simply issuing a blanket allegation that the mod pack Tyler created is illegal and throwing DMCAs around is at best laughable and at worst has caused a grievous injustice to a man who was simply trying to make life easier for people who wanted to enjoy work that – lest they forget – these authors had already freely distributed.

It could be considered poor etiquette to not ask the mod authors prior to the compilations being released but realistically, he would never have been able to contact all of them anyway. At the end of the day, it’s nothing more than a guide on how to get a specific set of mods to work together without issues, and a download where most of the work has been done for people already. Honestly, suck it up and be glad that people are enjoying your mods.

Tyler was also accused of keeping the package under wraps until just before it was released and then contacting news sites in order to maximize publicity, a charge he denied. He claimed to have posted word about the project on Reddit “weeks ago” and had no hand in spreading the word to other sites. Not that it matters; he was asked  to remove the collection and told that if he refused, WordPress and any other site hosting the package would receive “DMCA and other applicable copyright takedown notices.”

What do we think? We think that this compilation and the resulting drama has given Morrowind and its seemingly unlimited possibilities some fantastic publicity. And did the over-the-fucking-top reaction of a handful of modders help them in any way, shape or form? Nope – Reddit has jumped on the case and created a torrent of the compilation which has since been seeded thousands of times. You cannot stop the hivemind. The original guide has been taken down from WordPress, but it will pop up across the internet like a mushroom. You can count on that.

1 Durham Industries, Inc. v. Tomy Corp 630 F.2d 905 (2d Cir, 1980)

2 Lewis Galoob Toys, Inc. v. Nintendo of America, Inc. 964 F.2d 965 (9th Cir. 1992)

3 Sega Enterprises, Ltd. v. Accolade, Inc. 977 F.2d 1510 (9th Cir. 1992)

the author

Managing Editor of ManaPool, Peter lives in York, UK and is a great fan and master of turn-based strategy games. If he isn't playing one of those, you'll probably find him in a role-playing game instead. He's definitely not afraid to provide a straight up opinion on any game and has a strong like for indie developers. We all start small, after all.

  • http://www.shadow1980.co.uk Evil Tactician

    All credit to Zyle for doing the research into the legal side of this issue. <3

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  • Alex

    I completely agree with you. Very well researched points. I think these authors need to fuck something fast and chill the fuck out. Fucking pussies, they are everything that is wrong with the issue of copyright. wait, did Metallica make these mods?

  • http://capturethehill.com Pinky

    Wow, incredible article. I knew the general gist of what was going on with this situation, but the research that went into this article really stands out.

    I don’t know of many, if any, sites that would go through so much work to produce a single article about a guy in the modding community doing wrong. Congrats Mana Pool, stay classy.

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  • 9Lives

    I think the mod authors need to stop acting like 3rd graders.

  • johnykalesony

    To two retards cursing at moders – maybe You can spend some months polishing the textures, making meshes, and then find Your mod in someone’s compilation, where it shouldn’t be ? At least without permission to use it. You two are to stupid to download these mods separately and install them? I guess so, becouse of other “compilation” users already writing posts like “OMG WTF DIS ISN”T WORKING ERRORS STUPID GAME”. I just can’t understand one thing – how could You don’t respect someone hard work with these mods? Making a compilation like these is only matter of packaging one folder with removal of several gameplay mods – any advanced Morrowind player could post such compilation – but they won’t do that until now, when someone tried to be popular on something that he didn’t create.

  • sesom

    I am one of these evil modders who spends countless hours to make Fallout 3 & New Vegas more attractive and I agree totally.

    Why should I release my work if everybody can borg it and state that they are the perfect modders because they made a compilation, contact magazines and push their egos in unknown heights because they get the praise from my work.

    The solution is so simple correct! Don’t release it. Let the mod scene die so that this mod borgers can play with other things.

    Sorry player no more mods only compilators left. Have fun with them.

  • Tyler

    While I agree that an overarching compilation is a good thing for the community and for prospective mod-users, there a few things in your article that need addressing:

    The content independent of Bethesda Softworks in each mod is owned by the mod creator, or whoever owns the copyright for that content. This includes custom textures, the entirety of the program known as “Morrowind Graphics Enhanced”, et al. That is how they own the content.

    Second, the distribution, while noncommercial, is almost never carte blanche. Each mod is distributed with a readme, some of which include very specific instructions on what legally is and is not allowed. In regards to any mod, credit should be given.

    Third, your cited cases are quite old, and in all likelihood have been superseded by more recent, and relevant cases. Regardless, they are for differing technologies, and I’d be surprised if they could even be considered for stare decisis.

    Finally, support of an illegal action in the taunting and spiteful manner in which you closed this article with is entirely shameful and also warrants legal recourse. So you might want to get real legal counsel, in case some of the more obstreperous modders affected by this compilation read what you’ve written.

  • Lost

    You are getting only one side of the story here, and a lot, if not most, of the content in this compilation is 100% original works, which do indeed belong to the authors. Almost every asset of mine that is contained in this compilation is 100% original work, I am a texture/3dartist (mostly texture work.) I personally do not care that he included my work however.

    Some of the authors did try to work with Tyler, but he wasn’t having it. He basically told the community to fuck off and left.

    The day after he flipped a lid, he (I assume) made at least 3 accounts, that I seen, on the Beth forums, all something to do with “Streisand effect.” All of the threads went on about the “Streisand effect” in regards to this compilation. Bethesda, I assume, decided to IP ban him because he was spamming this shit on the forum.

    As for the ISP thing, that is way overboard. Whoever did that needs to chill the fuck out.

  • gnomesrule

    Ironically there is a compilation that was begun before this one which is soon to be released. This one however has acquired all the necessary permission and credits from the mod creators and is more up to date, and also bug free. Furthermore whichever mods the creators could not acquire permission for it is good enough to provide the names and locations of those mods. This compilation will be more up to date (in a word, better) than this one, largely because it has the support and assistance of the Morrowind Moding community.

    If the author of the above compilation had taken the mod down for the duration necessary to acquire the general agreement of the content makers he could have easily continued this project in a manner that would have gained both recognition and genuine accomplishment. Instead, due to the gracelessness of both parties there is here an effectively decaying and already outdated compilation that could have been successful.

    Oh and here is the url to the Italian (well at least originally) project that should be released soon which will (I hope) fill the hole that this one left behind XD.

  • gnomesrule
  • tronvillain

    I’m not sure you actually understand the issues involved here. I could release as good (or better than) Morrowind 2011 tommorow, but I won’t. Not because it would be illegal (though it might be to some degree), but because I have some respect for the wishes of the modders involved. You know, the people who actually created the content? Tyler Smith didn’t show those people any respect when he created a compilation without asking their permission, despite the fact that a large percentage of the mods have readmes which state that they shouldn’t be used as a resource or redistributed. He violated the trust of the modding community, and you are surprised that people got upset and that some of them took steps against him?

    You may not know this, but KINGPIX has been assembling a compilation of mods for which he has permission or are explicitly available for use, and is nearing a release:

    http://forums.bethsoft.com/index.php?/topic/1156204-wipz-morrowind-overhaul-sounds-graphics/

    Anyway, a few extra points:

    ” First off, the dispute concerns the complilation of a set of mods to which the original authors potentially hold no copyright in the first place (obviously jurisdiction is an issue depending on the location of the servers where the alleged infringement occurred, so I am taking US law as the example) as, being derivative works, copyright would not be granted to the mod authors unless they can show sufficient “originality” to warrant their own copyright protection.”

    Derivative works? Perhaps you are unaware of what the complilation included, but original textures, meshes, and code are in no sense derivative works. Oh, there is plenty of derivative work as well (textures and meshes derived from or based on the vanilla versions) as well as the plugins which Bethesda technically owns under the terms of the EULA, but that isn’t what people were talking about when mentioning legal action. I personally suspect it would never have gone that far, but the mere possibility is probably enough to generate some of the necessary responses.

    “Even if we assume that the mod authors do in fact hold copyright, by removing the download link to the compilation there is no longer a breach of that copyright. Simply writing instructions on how to get one piece of software to run compatibly with another is certainly not copyright infringement.”

    Of course it’s not, and no one would have a problem with that. In fact, several such guides ALREADY exist.

    “Taking it a step further, the court has even ruled that “where disassembly is the only way to gain access to the ideas and functional elements embodied in a copyrighted computer program and where there is a legitimate reason for seeking such access, disassembly is a fair use of the copyrighted work, as a matter of law.” 3 So even by further modifying the original mods in order to make them run compatibly – certainly a legitimate reason for doing so – Tyler has surely acted within the bounds of fair use already set by the court.”

    Ah, but that would only apply to the plugin themselves, but modified plugins are a very small part of Morrowind 2011, and not what people were especially upset about or threatening legal action about.
    “And did the over-the-fucking-top reaction of a handful of modders help them in any way, shape or form? Nope – Reddit has jumped on the case and created a torrent of the compilation which has since been seeded thousands of times. You cannot stop the hivemind.”

    Yes, people can pirate pretty much anything these daysl. That doesn’t mean we have to accept it, or embrace it.

    Oh, and finally I will mention that one of my mods, “Better Skulls” was included in the compilation. The readme states that the vanilla style meshes (derived from Bethesda meshes) can be used freely in other mods, but that the textures for the retextured versions are not. It would have been easy to contact me to double check, but he didn’t.

  • latendresse76

    Quote: “Unfortunately it seems that some of the authors of the mods included in this compilation were not as pleased with the effort.
    The day after the mod collection was turned over to the public, Tyler reported on Reddit that he had began to receive complaints and threats of legal action from various mod authors along with demands that he take the package offline. ”

    due to the fact that there were no credits nor was there any attempt to ask for permission which some of the modders requested.

    Quote: “He was also banned and IP blocked from Bethesda’s Morrowind forums.”

    things got out of hand in the tread and the insults started to fly, one of the upset modders isn’t a native english speaker so it’s easy for misunderstandings but tyler got insulting so he got banned.

    Quote: “And to rub salt in the wound, someone even went to the trouble of contacting his ISP to get him cut from the internet. (Talk about taking things a little too far?)”

    Tyler later stated on his Morrowind 2011 – Dead “It’s not a takedown notice, it had contained a lot of information about about the amount of bandwidth I used to seed the torrent for the first few days, and a number of compaints came in. They have gave me a choice to pay for the overchanges and have a reduced access or cancel and it was clear if I did it again it or they received another noticed I would receive the takedown notice. But also the rep I spoke with said that the account was under review for take down.”

    Quote: “It could be considered poor etiquette to not ask the mod authors prior to the compilations being released but realistically, he would never have been able to contact all of them anyway.”

    actually he used a lot of stuff from active modders which is why there was an issue in the modding community he failed to give any credit until he was called out on it.

    he has claimed that people were “attacking” his wordpress site yet it clearly says that it was taken down by the author.

    he has also complained about another compilation that is in the works and wonders why it hasn’t gotten the same treatment as him. the answer is that the person assembling that compilation ASKED before using anyone’s stuff and has been helped by the authors of the mods in setting it up.

  • http://www.shadow1980.co.uk Evil Tactician

    Some of the last replies completely missed the point of the article: We more than agree that it would have been nice for permission to be asked, yadi bla bla. We’ve modded plenty ourselves in the past.

    The real thing that made us side against the (handful, and it certainly doens’t apply to all of them!) modders is the completely over the top reaction that happened as a result. Ultimately compilations are a *good* thing and they ensure the end-user is able to mod their game without a major hassle.

    All arguements related to “ensuring my mod is up-to-date” and “fixing it easily” are void. What those people are saying “I am a control freak and I want the spotlight for this work, even if it means many people don’t get to see/play/enjoy it”. The latter attitude is counter-productive to what the modding scene stands for, or should stand for. Once you release a mod, consider it public domain and let people enjoy it the way they wish *as long as credit is given in an acceptable manner*.

    That’s the point of the article. The modders in question went about it the wrong way, period.

    Either way it seems like they might have come to some sort of understanding now. Let’s hope so, as it would be great to see all modders get together and make a large ‘extended and improved morrowind’ *together* – for all gamers to enjoy. The game still has tons of potential.

  • latendresse76

    Evil Tactician

    copyright made understandable
    http://www.loc.gov/teachers/copyrightmystery/#

  • http://www.shadow1980.co.uk Evil Tactician

    @latendresse76 – You’re really missing the point of the article :-)

    We just hope the whole situation opened some eyes in terms of making this sort of work more easily available to gamers. This “you are too dumb to make it work” crap is really bugging me. It’s not about that in the slightest (though there are plenty of people who don’t understand the first thing about mods, but that’s not the point). Last time I played Morrowind it took 13 hours to get things the way I like them, due to the sheer volume of mods. Never mind downloading them all individually, reading their instructions, getting them to play nice together, etc.

    It’s in everyone’s interest if the modders banded together to create a larger ‘master mod’ with optional additions to it. Ever played/looked at the X3 / Egosoft community? They even keep track of what ID each mod references in the game to increase the change that compatibility remains. That’s the sort of initiatve that the Morrowind community would benefit from.

    Personally, I’d love to enjoy Morrowind with a huge amount of the awesome mods people have created – but I don’t have the time to go through my game and mod it, my schedule is just too packed for that.

    Should Tyler have asked permission? Yes, absolutely. But that doesn’t mean the outright hostile reaction was warranted, it would have been a fairly simple matter to resolve things as adults. If everyone took a step back, take a breather and work on a solution that everyone is comfortable with, we’d all be better off in the long run.

    I suspect though that this arguement will take a long time to resolve as there are some overzealous people who feel they have been done a great injustice. And they have far less interested in getting the outcome they alledgedly wouldn’t have minded in the first place than shouting louder and louder about how much of an injustice it really is.

  • latendresse76

    the hostile reaction was on Tyler’s part, he has made assumptions that people are after him and trying to tear his stuff down. He removed his wordpress page yet he posted on reddit,and you state in your blog, that it was taken down because of DMCA and other applicable copyright takedown notices.
    http://i947.photobucket.com/albums/ad312/latendresse76/mw3011.jpg

    i have read his credits and all the mods he used that the authors requested to be contacted are active.

    Tyler started a reddit page bashing the modders at the official Bethesda forum who’s work he is distributing with out there consent. One specifically had taken down his mods so that he could finish a complete over haul of every texture in MW in high resolution. He had sent out samplers for people at the official’s to see but wants it to be released as a complete package. Now with the disrespect that was shown to him, he is pondering 1) keeping for himself 2)doing an exclusive release to the modding community 3) just quit modding. Other great modders/artists have quit because of this kind of stuff.

    Tyler wasn’t Banned from the officials for his compilation he was band for insulting the people there and has lashed out on the community multiple time since then.

  • gnomesrule

    “It’s in everyone’s interest if the modders banded together to create a larger ‘master mod’ with optional additions to it.”

    That’s basically what is happening actually. LOL. And yes some modders did overact, but so did Tyler.

    “If everyone took a step back, take a breather and work on a solution that everyone is comfortable with, we’d all be better off in the long run.”

    That’s true. In the thread that the initial argument took place (which has now been taken down) both parties had ample opportunities to do so. However it was Tyler’s responsibility to role with the punches while various modders were finding out about his compendium. At the end of the thread I remember reading comments by modders that this could be resolved with any additional patience. The overreacting modders were still only (in essence XD) demanding that he discontinue the compendium until it could be published in a moral non-piraty manner.

  • peachykeen

    “Should Tyler have asked permission? Yes, absolutely. But that doesn’t mean the outright hostile reaction was warranted, it would have been a fairly simple matter to resolve things as adults. If everyone took a step back, take a breather and work on a solution that everyone is comfortable with, we’d all be better off in the long run.”

    There were a few emails exchanged that didn’t make it to the internet, however, something about this situation prompted knee-jerk hostile reactions from both sides. In one of the emails that was posted, the emphasis intended didn’t translate well through the internet (it was on avoiding legal action but the fact this did break laws).

    In fact, the way I understand it, Tyler and I exchanged emails then both went to bed, and most of the chaos erupted during the night, before either of us had a chance to really discuss things or try to work them out. In the days since, I (as the person who originally contacted him) have been working with him as much as possible to make sure the “lite” version of his pack (somewhat in progress at this point, I understand) makes both modders and players happy.

    Hopefully he can get that out and we can show that, after the initial misunderstanding and the internet’s ridiculous reaction, things have been worked out for the benefit of all.

  • Chaka

    “All credit to Zyle for doing the research into the legal side of this issue. <3"
    Which was done very poorly, this article is missing the both- the point of it all and most points stated are even wrong.

    "You’re really missing the point of the article"
    No, actually this article is missing the point of what happened.

    The point is not in what was legal and what not, the point is simply in what was permited for usage and what was not.

    "he would never have been able to contact all of them anyway"
    Oh really? So are many of us who are working on projects much bigger than this one really an idiots for actually asking over 100 modders for permission to use their stuff? Oh I'm sorry, this is not even a project, this is just a compilation of other's projects.

  • http://www.shadow1980.co.uk Evil Tactician

    @peachykeen – now that’s a response that is much more constructive and positive than some of the other… trash above. Thank you for that, and thank you for shining some additional light on the ‘issue’.

    @chaka – what’s with the attitude? That type of response is exactly why people are defending Tyler.

  • http://capturethehill.com Pinky

    Ok look: To address my original comment that has been downvoted by you obviously pissed off modders, all I said was the article was good and it’s nice to see a site do research. There is no reason at all for that to be downvoted. I get that you modders are quite annoyed about this situation, and I am pretty much on your side. I also agree that Tyler’s actions were inappropriate, and it’s not the first time that someone has taken to Reddit in order to get a whole lot of people pissed off at just a few.

    I get it that you spent months working on these projects, and that someone making a compilation without permission is bad. It happens all the time in every mod community (see Garry’s Mod). This is Tyler’s fault entirely. While compilations overral benefit the players, it is still necessary for the author to get permission.

    I think a lot of the modders are taking this way too far – calling an ISP doing what they’ve been doing is insane. This is the internet, and whether you like it or not, people steal things. Maybe go over to Reddit and explain your side of the argument because obviously Tyler didn’t spill all the beans. A few weeks ago, someone went to Reddit and said they’d been VAC banned for no reason. Everyone there believed him and emailed Valve, but a few days later, a couple Redditors searched through forums and did the research that proved the guy did in fact hack. This is what you need to do, because right now, you look like the bad guys to most people.

    I’m don’t agree with the modder’s behavior 100% in this case, but I also disagree greatly with Tyler. Modders have the right to make Tyler take the content down, and he didn’t have the right to include it in the compilation originally.

  • Crazy Greggy

    ” While I agree that an overarching compilation is a good thing for the community and for prospective mod-users, ”
    Tyler , THIS is the very issue I take with your mod : what makes you think that a uniform approach to a modded Morrowind is a good thing ? If its to help people who don’t have time to spend searching for mods then fine , that would give them a pre-fab version of a modded Morrowind to play with . Ok , well I’m one of those people who , by rights shouldn’t have time to spend tweaking Morrowind to my own playing style ( or to accommodate the character I intend to use ) . I work far too much and I don’t have a lot of time and yet , I still enjoy the challenge of modding Morrowind IN MY WAY . My Morrowind reflects how I want to play the game at any given time and with the wealth of mods available I can do so in the finest detail . However , I do not assume that my Morrowind should be everyone elses Morrowind : it’s a personal thing and it reflects the fact that I am an individual . I wouldn’t use a compilation for that very simple reason : I play my Morrowind the way I choose to .
    Now the obvious response is that new comers to the game don’t have the experience dealing with the twists and pitfalls of dressing up Morrowind with the mods that reflect their playing style . Well fine but how do they learn ? How do they get that experience with dealing with mods ? If they use a compilation the work has been done for them ; they won’t have the opportunity to dig in and find what makes a combination of mods so appealing . Or why mod A and mod B don’t get along . Or why as simple a thing as a new clothing set or armour set can change your style in ways you wouldn’t have considered before stumbling across them in the mod forums .
    I deliberately haven’t attacked you Tyler because I don’t know you . All I can say is if you want to present a compilation of mods to the modding community , prepare to be ignored ( unless , of course , you follow the road you have already taken ! ) . Think about it .

  • peachykeen

    @Evil Tactician: after seeing some of the comments, I wanted to explain what had actually happened.

    I agree that contacting his ISP was overkill to an extreme, especially within a day or so of the first email exchange. Not sure who did that, although I saw a comment somewhere that it was actually just his ISP contacting him because of bandwidth use.

    As for the fact of the article, some elements of mods are considered by copyright law as original works. Bethesda’s EULA covers datafiles and certain others, but a significant portion, especially external textures, models and code, are covered by the typical laws. However, any discussion of copyright at this point is more or less null and void.

    The original situation, with the original pack, has been mostly settled with Tyler voluntarily taking it down from a number of hosts. What I’ve seen of the new pack is much improved, hopefully that can be released soon. If it is released and is, as it appears to be, in line with the requests of all involved, then I (and hopefully others in the MW community) will be promoting it as much as possible.

  • http://www.shadow1980.co.uk Evil Tactician

    @peachykeen – there will probably be a few spiteful individuals who wont let the matter rest, even once a perfect compromise has been reached, but I for one am glad to see that things are settled in a mature manner.

    It will be nice to see what comes out of it all – and even nicer to see more people pick up Morrowind. It might be an older game, but god that game gave me many hours of pleasure.

    I have more than a few fingers crossed that Bethesda will get things “right” with Skyrim and not leave some of the most enjoyable gameplay elements out… (And god don’t make it a dumbed down console game…)

  • hdgfdg

    Uh, Lost, I’d just like to point out that at least one of those Streishand accounts (and the first one I could find when I was linked to it) was a just a random guy on /v/ who was angry about the whole thing, he posted links to the forums that explained the mod and the issue on /v/ before the whole controversy had become known to most of the internet.

    Then he created an account with Streishand in the name (I don’t remember the actual name) to troll the modders by innocently letting them know that someone created an awesome new compilation and that he wanted to share the great news. The topic got locked in like 5 posts though. I did a quick look at the forums and I hadn’t found anything else like it.

    The creator also said that he had no part in the ‘raid’ and the ban was unfounded.

    So no, I don’t think it was the creator of the compilation’s doing.

    Oh, and I’d also like to mention another dude on /v/ released his own graphical compilation that he’d been working on for awhile, brorrowind or something. It’s pretty awesome. You guys need to grow up. You’re basically saying that your mods can only be used if you added it in to your Morrowind yourself, if you didn’t go through the work to see what was compatible with other mods, then you can’t use it.
    Might as well just say your mod can only be used if it’s the only mod you have installed.

  • latendresse76

    Evil Tactician – “there will probably be a few spiteful individuals who wont let the matter rest, even once a perfect compromise has been reached, but I for one am glad to see that things are settled in a mature manner.”

    there is a compilation being made by someone at the officials, Tyler actually mentioned it in his flame of the modders asking why it wasn’t being treated the same. It has been made with the consent of the creators of the mods and the modders have actually helped make their mods compatible with other mods to prevent errors.

    it’s all a matter of respect.

  • http://www.shadow1980.co.uk Evil Tactician

    @latendresse76 – Could you please link it as I am sure some people would be interested? What are the main differences with Morrowind 2011, despite for who’s behind it?

  • Lost

    @Evil Tactician

    [BETA/WIPz] Morrowind Overhaul – Sounds & Graphics :

    http://forums.bethsoft.com/index.php?/topic/1156204-betawipz-morrowind-overhaul-sounds-graphics/

    The differences are that there is a team behind it, they intend to keep it updated as mods are updated, probably uses some different modders work, and so on. More details in thread linked above.

    @hdgfdg

    I personally do not care that my work is in his compilation, I do not care that it is in any compilation for TES games. Most modders don’t, it is only a few who did, and they have reason to be angry, taking peoples work and using it without asking it plainly disrespectful, doesn’t matter his intentions. People need to learn a bit of respect, a simple PM or email asking “Do you mind if I use your work in my compilation” is not a very difficult task.

    Making the compilation in a manner that all the included mods work together is a courtesy to the user more then the modder. If not all of the mods are compatible it should be noted, again a courtesy mostly for the user.

    As for /v, if that is so, and I do not doubt it, then Tyler should probably be angry with them not Beth or the modders, they are most likely the reason he was IP banned

    And lastly, for whatever reason this one blew up, it was all over the net, even Bethesda had a tweet about it (sense removed). I have no clue why it got so much attention, even before the authors were involved. I would imagine that the reason this didn’t happen to the other /v compilation is because nobody really knew about it.

  • TimT

    I have read everyones point of view on this issue, and I support the creator of Morrowind 2011.
    This man has done a service to everyone, and it is rather pathetic that so many have carried out a witch hunt against him.

    Tyler Smith – I am a businessman from Edmonton, and my lawyer has a fair amount of experience with legal matters pertaining game development. Contact me and I could put you in touch with him, and you can get some free advice.

  • Aaron

    @Tyler “Finally, support of an illegal action in the taunting and spiteful manner in which you closed this article with is entirely shameful and also warrants legal recourse.”

    So, according to you, if the police catch an alleged thief and I demonstrate in public because I believe the thief is innocent, Freedom of Speech does not apply to me and I would need to resort to legal help for speaking my mind?

    Perhaps Richard Stallman, who is against the ridiculous concept of ‘copyright’

    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-2991926848094761035&hl=en#

    should be imprisoned for suggesting we demolish the copyright laws we currently have? Wow, your logic is impeccable… not.

    “So you might want to get real legal counsel, in case some of the more obstreperous modders affected by this compilation read what you’ve written.”

    I would LOVE to see those rambunctious hooligans try to threaten Evil Tactician. For while he is completely free to speak his own mind on any subject he chooses, and no sane lawyer would even remotely dream of trying anything like what you’re suggesting, if however they begin to call him names or to threaten him, Evil Tactician could record the threats and/or slander and take further action. Of course, he wouldn’t get that far unless threats are made against his life.

    Speaking of life, here is a suggestion: get one.

  • Tyler

    Ad hominem attacks are never the way to go, Aaron. Your entire post is discredited now thanks to your closing remarks, almost like Evil Tactician’s entire article above. As for my phrase on “legal recourse”, I wasn’t referring to a lawsuit. I was referring to Mana Pool exercising their legal right to get rid of Evil Tactician after such a ridiculous display of trolling. It’s also rare that lawsuits result in imprisonment… be careful that you don’t fall prey to the fallacy of the false dilemma in your reasoning.

    By the way, this article and discussion are from early January. It’s now the end of April. I think you need to scroll down on whatever news feed/syndication service you use; you’re falling a bit behind.

  • Aaron

    @Tyler

    Lawsuits may result in serious legal repercussions if threats against someone’s life are made. Such an uncharacteristic display of behaviour against someone (even asking to have their ISP down!) could very well have been accompanied by far more serious threats. After all, I have read some of the terrible language that was used by these modders (I believe various comments of hatred can still be found around YouTube); so expecting that one or two of them may take their threats further is not that strange to believe. All I was saying is that when given too much grief from ‘righteous’ modders, you can begin to make a note of the abuse you receive.

    “…after such a ridiculous display of trolling”

    Trolling refers to inflammatory remarks which are also extraneous and off-the-topic. In this case, his arguments are well thought out and not intentionally inflammatory. On the contrary, he presents his own take on the matter; whether you like it or not. Even if Mana Pool decided to exercise their ‘legal right’ and kick Evil Tactician out by listening to the demands of a few angry modders who demand crucifixion, in a totalitarian sort of way, then of course they can do so. But it could hardly be considered morally acceptable to do such a thing, so I am surprised you brought it up.

    As the old saying goes: “The letter of the law can be deadly”.

    “…, your cited cases are quite old, and in all likelihood have been superseded by more recent, and relevant cases. Regardless, they are for differing technologies, and I’d be surprised if they could even be considered for stare decisis.”

    On the contrary, if there is legal precedent for something it makes it more likely that something similar may apply again. There is much similarity in the two cases and I am not sure to what extent the ‘differing technologies’ aspect would make much difference here at all; the facts could be perceived as being substantially the same. But as you admit yourself one way or another “you’d be surprised if..” which indicates that you are not certain. The point was that this is a matter for courts and the ‘legality’ or ‘illegality’ is not something as transparent.

    Evil Tactician did not support any illegal action. Not only because the illegality is clearly not transparent without actual resorting to court but also because he only spoke his mind. He did not support the idea of e.g. keeping the mod running up or claimed he would run the mod on his site, or some specific evidence that showed actual support. He supported the action only by words, by showing what he thinks is right. It is called Freedom of Speech; you may have heard of the concept.

    “By the way, this article and discussion are from early January. It’s now the end of April. I think you need to scroll down on whatever news feed/syndication service you use; you’re falling a bit behind.”

    I am sure I am. However, what happens next is not the point; the point is that certain people behaved in a way which was completely inexcusable. I have managed to gather a list of such names. It is very important for me to know who these modders are so I can avoid using their mods in the future.

    As far as Bethesda is concerned, they should also get their act right and explain to what degree a derivative work based upon a mod belongs to the author and in what way. They have the right but more importantly the responsibility to make these things more clear to the end user.

    It doesn’t take long for a modding community to fall apart and for people to lose trust in those that until recently they looked up to. It’s a pity, but a fact of life.

    Time to move on.

  • Pingback: Morrowind 2011 Compilation version 2.0()

  • Diceman

    oh look, a bunch of faggot modders who didn’t read the TOA for the toolkit and the licensing agreement for both it and the game.

    EVERYTHING YOU MAKE BELONGS TO BETHESDA.

  • Troika

    Skyrim’s TOS for the game and the editor explicitly forbid any claim of copyright or control over mods, and actually declare your End-User License void if you do. So, suck it, whiny modders.

  • Aaron

    @Troika This is an old thread regarding a mod compilation made for Oblivion, not for Skyrim. Also, derivative works appearing in mods are not necessarily the same thing as mods and copyright laws are extremely complicated.

  • Aaron

    Wow it’s been so long I messed this up. Of course I meant to say this is a Morrowind compilation, not an Oblivion compilation :)