EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

September 21, 2008 -

Electronic Arts has issued an apology to customers over the controversial DRM in Will Wright's long-awaited Spore.

As reported by the Los Angeles Times, EA is also relaxing Spore's extra-tight copy controls. EA exec Frank Gibeau said:

We've received complaints from a lot of customers who we recognize and respect. We need to adapt our policy to accommodate our legitimate consumers...

 

We assumed that consumers understand piracy is a huge problem. We have found that 75% of our consumers install and play any particular game on only one machine, and less than 1% ever try to play on more than three different machines.

As part of its reversal of course on Spore DRM, EA is boosting the install limit to five computers. Commenting on EA's decision, IDC analyst Billy Pidgeon told the Times:

The key to making copyright restrictions work is to offer value. In the end, this will blow over because Spore is a fun game, and people will want to try it.


Comments

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

Ugh...see I don't do magazines and stuff, and I don't recall Articles on here about DRMs and stuff...so Spore came out with great Reviews and shortly after I installed it....explosion on the internet over Spore's DRM and it's limited uses and the bs in the manual and stuff...if I'd known ahead of time I would have never in a million years purchased Spore because I believe something like SecuRom is as bad as someone hacking my computer and taking it over and Big Brothering me...so it's all tripe I really don't want to support -_-

 

And yes I have been really busy for months now being a college student and all so I probably missed stuff talking about the DRM and all.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

"We've received complaints from a lot of customers who we recognize and respect. We need to adapt our policy to accommodate our legitimate consumers..."

But for all the people that have purchased other EA games, your complaints have been put into a folder called "Hahahahahahahaha, stupid people who bought our garbage" and we shall continue to ignore you like the pathetic cry babies that you are. 

For the people who continue to seek help on other games using our online support system, please continue to answer the same questions over and over again until one of the many support center agents "addressing" your issue decides to finally attempt to argue with you about the issue until you give up trying to get whatever your inquiry may be resolved.

Thank you for choosing EA and remember, if you have a problem with Spore, we recognize and respecte you.  For all other products, go f*** yourself.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

I guess if I throw two less bricks through EA's windows they'll accept that as a solution, then.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

"We assumed that consumers understand piracy is a huge problem." Haven't told that lie enough for it to be taken as truth, sorry. Try more, and maybe buy up those companies that aren't filling their programs with spyware and are still making a profit. As long as they're around you're clearly a bunch of liars.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

Paying for media: Still for chumps since the advent of broadband.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

It is this kind of blatantly absurd and dim-witted comment that fuels the fires for the DRM propaganda machine which only hurts gamers everywhere.

 

You must surely work for EA or some other similar entity with a vested interest in controlling media.    

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

Sure. Whatever lets you get through the day. Keep paying for their lawyers and reaching for that rainbow. I'm sure EA will decide to change their ways.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

Okay... And instead of making five pirate copies for friends I'll only make three. The other two will have to get it from those three.

Piracy may well be a problem. It's EA's problem. Not the paying customer's. This is not solving the problem. It's barely mitigating the problem, and causing new problems for the customers.

It's still providing an arbitrary limitation to paying customers that the pirates don't have to put up with. If they must do this then give some benefit in return.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

DRM does not prevent piracy, it never had, and it never will. Hellooooo EA what are you? Retarded? 

Okay. EA, listen. Take a peice of knowledge from Microsoft, Apple, and Firewall makers. They all have to constantly improve their products to prevent hacking. Did you honestly thing making a beefy DRM would discourage that? No, you made a big FLASHY game and stated DRM would be on it. You just made a giant "HEY BREAK THIS DRM" flag to all the hackers, and crackers to just be ready for when the game hits. Just as Apple Macs are getting more prime time under the scope of hackers, your game has become a beacon of breakage.

You should of learned from the iPhone...

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

I was on the fence about buying this one. However now with EA basically spitting in the consumers face by making a sad and lazy attempt to look like they are trying, I am 100% sure I'm not buying this game even if DRM is removed.

I work in tech support so I know that you hae to actually be nice. Screw EA, I'll stay with my older stuff.

 

Seriously, The entire thing about how many times I can install the game, I don't think so. I mean if you buy EA's game, install it, find it has installed a backdoor for all sorts of problems like virii, hackers, and all sorts of malware, then I have to reformat my computer, and DING, that counts as another install.

 

In the immortal words of Robin Williams

The definition of redundant: see redundant

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

[PSA]

 

More people need to post scathing reviews on Amazon and other similar sites. I encourage everyone reading this to ask all your gamer friends to please take the time to post one - even if it is a copy and paste job.

 

Enough is enough and gamers need to seriously start to make waves and keep making them until they are felt in offices in DC and beyond!  

 

[/PSA]

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

You know what, screw this, I've had it. I am going to write to EA and show them just how many people are unhappy with Spore. Maybe if they get loads of hate mail they will change their minds. When I get to my 5 install limits I'm going to write to them again, telling them that I'm going to pirate their game because I can't play it anymore. And if they want to sue me then bring it on. I really encourage everone to write to EA and tell them what you think and just plain threaten them. To the people who haven't bought Spore yet (I bought it before I was aware of the whole Sucurom issue), I encourage you to write veiled threats about pirating it because of the DRM. And hell, if they want to sue someone for pirating the game, it will be even worse publicity for them ("Corporate Giant EA Sues its own Customers!").

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

Still. EA can go to hell and take their monopoly, their Maddens, and their stupid non-games with them.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

End users should be able to install the game/software on an unlimited number of computers and keep on adding installations, as hardware changes or system crashes etc. occur. The real item to control is not the number of installations; it is how many of these installations can be used, at the same time.

Thus, with ByteShield, the permission to run moves from one PC to another, seamlessly. For more information see the whitepaper "Is Anti-Piracy/DRM the Cure or the Disease for PC Games?" which can be downloaded here www.byteshield.net/byteshield_whitepaper_0005.pdf.

 

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

Dude, stop shilling this Byteshield crap, ya? 

Time for webmonkeys to block them some spam.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

*sigh* i could say i'm never buying another emasculating arts title ever again, but some, VERY FEW for that matter, are irresistible. (Zany Golf, Medal of Honor: Front-line) that was the old days, now-a-days EA don't give a fuck except for the all mighty, all American, all "deity," dollar bill. i'm just wondering when corporate censor and greed will end, you know, EA is a sad, sad, pity case that just wants to relive the old days and fuck people over. I don't know though, I think big time businesses in general, (Square-Enix or even Microsoft's Shit Box 3-shitty) is getting a little too ambitious......

Jesus Jack Jones Thompson told me to do it!

Jesus Jack Jones Thompson loves you, so kill for his amusement so we can get money for the new "People's Temple of Jesus Jack Jones Thompson"

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

It's so strange though - if they were so greedy and after the dolla dolla bill (y'all) then why wouldn't they go out and do something that will actually make them money. I'm pretty sure the point of avarice is to make insane amounts of coin not turn away millions of customers. Does EA suffer from Chrometophobia?

Is this some sort of corporate move whereby they take a hit in sales so they can say "look, look at us we're not a monopoly"...?

It's a shame too - while the gameplay is mediocre the creature animation engine is one of the most innovative things to ever come out of that company... but nobody is going to care about that anymore anyways... sorry Will...

 

 

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

Makes sense. Wright seemed resigned to this having bad sales when he did his begging for a worse score and more sales. Might as well use it to try polish a monopoly's image as a victim.
I wonder how much money EA made this month compared to what they'd whine they may have lost from the nefarious doings of SOME GUY ONLINE. I bet they can't even make up some lies to try to look pitiable.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

I feel sorry for Wright...  His most innovative game in many ways and most innovative game ever, but also his worst game gameplay wise out of every game he has had a major hand in...  I guess if EA was going to take a hit with a game, this is the one to take the hit with.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

if they were scared of money, then that damn bear from condemned 2 is actually yogi bear ready to raid people's picnic baskets, fah!

Jesus Jack Jones Thompson told me to do it!

Jesus Jack Jones Thompson loves you, so kill for his amusement so we can get money for the new "People's Temple of Jesus Jack Jones Thompson"

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

Sorry, not buying it.  I want no less than 10 installs and a personalized keylogger.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

I want unlimited installs on a game that I bought. I also want suckurom to be gone. period.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

I really don't care about how many times I can install it.  Yeah - I've had a crap computer that's crashed on me several times and thus I've had to re-install games multiple times at times.   But putting that aside - how does allowing it to be installed 5 times fix the spyware/uninstall problems this DRM thing presents?

 

When EA fixes that, then I'll buy the game.   Til then, I'll find different games that don't mess with my computer.   It's crappy enough /without/ the extra spyware crap.  

 

Such a shame.  I was looking forward to Spore, too.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

You can still play the game, for free!, and also be about to spite EA!

(That's what a few of my friends did at least, my pc couldn't handle Spore, as fun as it (the game) looks.)

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

oh thanks ea now i can install a game i own 5 times great im so happy comeone guys lets give ea a party.....

for screwing the customers over that is. Hey Ea how about you remove the DRM it dont stop pireacy and all it does is make your customer mad like me becuse i had to delete crysis warhead and and go into my os and delete the malrom crap

Thanks Ea you pricks

Zaruka

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

I'm still not buying. Diablo II has been installed at least 6 times on my pc, and I know for some gamers it is worse. Just because <1% of gamers install a game on 3 machines doesn't mean that they won't install it less than 3 times, many people have installed the same game several times over a few years (like I have). Not to mention all the other crap that is being used with Suckurom.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

I still don't think EA is getting it...

I believe everyone is ok with a serial # and a disc in the player to play, but haveing to call the mother ship for approval is where the issue lays...

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

Back when I was in High School and did the whole LAN thing, the first few hour or so was passing around the 1 or 2 store bought Half Life disks and key-gens to make sure everyone had the game (then patching, mods, and so on).  There was no DRM for Half Life (minus the CD key).  If this was so damaging for them, why did they make millions off of it?  Why are they now the number 1 PC game maker (as well as distributor!)?  In my opinion it's because that the game was so damn good that the ease of spreading it around simply made more people like it, and eventually buy it.  Half Life's success is the answer against all Pro-DRM points anyone can come up with.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

Dear EA, Screw you.

PS: And a pox on your children while I'm at it.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

I would like to point out something that seems to have gone over the heads of many of you and was brushed upon by a couple.

They are comparing a game that needs to be paid for to a game that was released for free. The Creature Creator was a free game. What reason would someone have to install the same executable on multiple machines, when they could simply download it again on a new one? Nothing. There is no reason to do it.

So when they are makign a comparison between a free game and a retail game, they are playing the statistics game. They are quoting statistics that are minorly relevant but have absolutly nothing to do with backing up their decision.

When someone goes out and buys a game, they are going to do what they can to avoid buying that game. That means installing it on any computer they are going to be playing it one. THere is no benefit to the consumer to go out and buy one copy of the game for each PC. When a person downloads a free game, that finacial situation is gone and they will simply download it again and again for each PC they install it on.

THis is called lying through their teeth people.

E. Zachary Knight
http://www.editorialgames.com
Oklahoma City Chapter of the ECA
MySpace Page: http://www.myspace.com/okceca
Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1325674091

EA makes up numbers.

Correct. The numbers EA keeps pulling is based on a severely flawed study that has little baring on what's at hand.

 

When Red Alert 3 and Sims 3 have SecuROM, EA will defend themselves with a "100% of people who bought Spore installed SecuROM! See, they love it!"

"There are lies, damned lies, and statistics." - Mark Twain

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

Actually, the full CC, the one that required activation and the one that they are getting these numbers from, cost ten dollars. The free, or "trial" version, didn't require activation and so they couldn't have aquired these statistics.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

Good call!

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

Wait a minute didn't EA said they would put a 5 limit install on a future game? This isn't a big change.

And the fight rages on.

---------------------------------------------------- Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

Yeah, Red Alert 3 I believe.

-------------------------------------------------- I LIKE the fence. I get 2 groups to laugh at then.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

This is turning into one of a dark mark on EA. And I didn't think they could possibly put a bigger one on themselves than when they basically bought an easy road to domination of football game sales.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

People understand that piracy (of games) is a real issue that needs to dealt with - not in the way EA thinks it should be. EA is changing their position partly 1) because of the bad press and 2) partly because of losing money over this (not selling as many games as they had hoped, I think)

And yes, 75% of users might activate the game on only one computer and 1% of gamers might activate the game on more than 3 computers. That, however, isn't the point. The point is that in 12-24 months time, many people will have activated the game more than 3 or 5 times. This is when it becomes interesting.

The complaints EA have recieved seems valid and legitimate to me.  Especially since they probably come from people who have bought the game legitimately and now is very angry that they can't play their legitimate bought game.

I do, however, believe that most gamers today only plays a game once or twice and then discards it - and then moves on the next game...

 

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

Sure piracy is a real issue in that it happens.  But it does not happen nearly as much as EA wants you to believe.  People may pirate the game, but it very rarely makes a dent in profits until the retail version has something like Spore's DRM scheme.  THEN the piracy becomes an issue.

The implementation of these draconian schemes DRIVES people to download the pirated version.

Note that: People are DOWNLOADING the pirated version, they are not actually cracking the retail version (which I'm sure EA wouldn't mind because that means they bought the retail version too pirate).

But again, the pirated version of Spore was released DAYS BEFORE the retail release. 

No one, I guarantee you, not ONE person is actually "pirating" the game anymore.  By which I mean NO one is trying to crack the DRM anymore.  It was already done and released even BEFORE the game was itself released.

So the DRM is, at this point, a solution to a problem that no longer exists.  The answer to a question no one has asked.

It isn't STOPPING anything.  It's a moot point, damage done, move on.

There is NO reason for EA to keep on the game anymore because its already been stripped and virtually no one is actually trying to get past it anymore.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

Honestly, I would say that gamers play it once or twice, then forget about it, then come back to it months or years later. At least, that's what I do. That's also why I will never give away a game of mine again.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

I'm not understanding why they're not being sued so far. Doesn't this infringe on first sale doctrine? By design, in fact?

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

However, I do think that you could nail someone with Clayton Act charges on this.

Then again, you could actually nail any retail store with those for preventing legitimate returns, in theory.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

With a good lawyer, you could nail EA under the Clayton Act.

Retailers on the other hand I doubt, as you would have to prove provisions for a monopoly as the reason. Enforcing copy protections which are part of the DMCA doesn't qualify.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

EA has always held that the first sale doctrine doesn't apply to them, because they're not selling you the game.  They're selling you a license

In other words, you know all those games you "own"?  You don't own any of them.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

I'm pretty sure AutoCAD producer Autodesk tried to assert the same thing and was slapped down by a court earlier this year.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

You know, they could've said, "oh, we're sorry, we won't include SecuRom on anymore Spore disk." but nooo...all they did was just up the limit on how many times you can install the game, pft, yeah, real smooth there EA, you and Activision are two of the worst companies ever.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

No wonder THompson wanted EA to buy Take Two.

They hate gamers as much as he does.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

Reality.  The admission from EA is publicity

Pirated software has (since the days of 300baud) been easier to get, play and maintain then the legitamate route.  This has always been an ignored fact, the arguement generally concentrated on the money issue. 

As far as I can see, only the boys at Valve seemed to understand this, hence Steam. They seem to "understand" their customers and succeeded.  Make the process of buying/playing a game as easy and computer friendly as pirating one, and people will pay.

Make a game and distribute it in a way opposite to the above, punishing those that purchase it, and you drive that market to the pirates door. 

Game piracy has been around for 20 years and some.  Only in that 6 years has the industry really stepped forward to address it, and that is more on the game development programming side then the protection programming side.  More games are online based now, where the player's software can be checked in a subtle manner.  

For 60 dollars I can pop a disc in a console and play. That same 60 spent on a pc game never has that same ease, the real reason pc games are becoming  obsolete, not piracy.  The gaming industry is making money, and expanding. This is despite the piracy that has followed it, and even the current economy.

DRM is obtrusive, and restrictive.  It has effectively out-hyped the game it's supposed to protect. 

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

Which is why I love VALVe.

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

Because having to have an Internet connection to play a single-player game is not restrictive or intrusive at all?

Re: EA Apologizes for, Makes Changes to Spore DRM

No, I am talking about VALVe's DRM doesn't get in the way. I could go onto any computer I want, download the game unlimited times, and instant fun. This is great because I could show my friend a game I have.

I the end, it helps VALVe. They have a happy costumer, very efficient DRM causes less piracy and less people choosing to pirate, and I just got my friend to buy a copy of The Orange Box.

 
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PHX Corp@MW and AE The news media needs to stop promoting Shooters. period10/25/2014 - 7:16am
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Andrew EisenYep, it's why the news media stopped spotlighting numbnuts who run out on the field during sporting events.10/25/2014 - 12:01am
Matthew Wilsonin media research its called the copycat effect. it simply says that if the news covers one mass shooting shooter, it increases the likelihood of another person going on a mass shooting.10/25/2014 - 12:00am
Andrew EisenAgreed. It bugs me that I know the names, faces and personal histories of a bunch of mass shooters but I couldn't tell you the name of or recognize a photo of a single one of their victims.10/24/2014 - 11:51pm
AvalongodAgree with Quiknkold. @Mecha...if that worked we would have figured out how to prevent these long ago.10/24/2014 - 11:32pm
MechaCrashUnfortunately, you have to focus on the perpetrator to figure out the whys so you can try to prevent it from happening again.10/24/2014 - 10:55pm
quiknkoldpoor girl. poor victims. rather focus on them then the shooter. giving too much thought to the monster takes away from the victims.10/24/2014 - 10:15pm
Andrew EisenFor what it's worth, early reports are painting the motive as "he was pissed that a particular girl wouldn't date him."10/24/2014 - 10:12pm
quiknkoldwell then I suck as a man cause I ask for help when necessary :P10/24/2014 - 10:07pm
Technogeek(That said, mostly I was making the smartass evopsych comment because your post seemed like the kind of just-so story that has come to dominate 99% of its usage.)10/24/2014 - 10:04pm
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quiknkoldthere, I'm done. And thats what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown10/24/2014 - 9:54pm
quiknkoldand I am not spouting Evopsych, technogeek. tbh I never heard the phrase till you said it. I'm going off my observations.10/24/2014 - 9:54pm
quiknkoldmoreover, the guy who did this isnt even white. He was native american according to the news report I read. Also that he went for a specific target. That's a much different picture than a certain Sandy Hook guy who will not be named10/24/2014 - 9:53pm
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Technogeekevopsych lol10/24/2014 - 9:49pm
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