Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Piracy, DRM, Steam, and pirates.

I don't care very much about piracy.
There's a few things i hate, though:

1: Pirates contacting me for tech support. Every time there is a marketing push, the numbers are big, and even a tiny fraction of failures is a lot of reports. (most of issues are resolved by reboot by the way). I don't need you reporting me bugs that I fixed months ago! Buy it, and get the latest version with updates. And no I'm not going to be pitching my game to each pirate individually.

2: Certain individuals, who I cannot prove to be pirates, making up sheer lies for the purpose of getting others to pirate instead of buying.

I've seen big threads about my game, where early in the thread some wise-*** would tell authoritatively utter and complete made up lie that "Valve is taking >90% of the revenue" and he don't want to support a greedy evil corporation. Talk about word of mouth 'advantages' of piracy. Some paying customer starts a thread about my game, or writes a review, because he wants others to buy it too, and then someone drops by and post some made up falsehoods that would justify piracy and hurt the sales. (Don't know about you, but I would suspect this someone is a pirate). We are all trained since childhood to prepare defence speech in advance, to make up reasons. We are all trained to think that when others do it too, it is ok.

My game comes with no DRM what so ever (not even Steam's). There is a fairly generous demo. It is digitally distributed, meaning I get lion's share of what you pay. If you want to play without paying - at least keep it private, don't lie to yourself and everyone else, don't just make up and post reasons to pirate rather than buy.

Then the pirates making up bullshit about Steam problems (after never even checking my site for alternative methods of purchase). Steam may not be totally perfect, but it is VERY good and non intrusive. Yet people make up lies how you can't run game without Steam (you can) and how Steam is evil DRM adware and so on and so forth. Posting their speculations in a style as if they bought a game there then encountered problems, and had to resort to piracy (which does not seem to be the case).
They're just speaking of what they think is possible, and they don't even see this as lying, they see it as they are warning others of a possibility which they foresee using their unique skills of deduction. They don't see it as lying because they simply don't care what the truth is AT ALL. Well in my book it is worse than outright lying. To lie requires you to bother to learn the truth. There's some tiny degree of honesty in plain lying that is absent in bullshitting when you don't even care to know if you're lying or not.

Behaviours like this lead me to question whenever negative word of mouth impact from game's DRM is as strong as it would seem. It's hard to know what percentage of people who are claiming they won't buy it "because of DRM" would make up something else in absence of DRM.

1 comment:

  1. This post makes me really happy! I saw the game on steam and wanted to get it, but I have been having problems with steam lately so I wanted to steer clear. I did think of piracy, but before I did I did a quick google search. I found the official site, got the game *cheaper* than it was on steam, and its great! Keep up the great work :)