Can Apple stop you re-downloading a delisted game?

Reports emerged this week that allegedly that Apple is now longer making games which have been removed from the App Store available for re-download by existing purchasers. Cue Internet consternation. But what’s the actual legal position? Continue reading Can Apple stop you re-downloading a delisted game?

Can you pirate your own video game?

Hotline Miami 2, the forthcoming sequel to the excellent indie game Hotline Miami (note: I wrote that in bold, underline and italics to show how much I mean it), has been denied classification in Australia (another victim of the relatively restrictive local age rating system there).  So its developer instead just told Australian fans to pirate the game for free, attracting no small amount of games press in the process (hello, Streisand Effect).  So, I thought I’d write a little post on the subject of what happens legally if a developer pirates, or encourages piracy of, its own video game?   Continue reading Can you pirate your own video game?

Digital resale rights in the EU: the state of play

What happens when you decide that you no longer want an e-book, film, tv episode, music track or video game which you bought and downloaded?  What happens if you decide you want to give it to a friend, relative or just someone who wants to buy it from you?  We’re in the middle of trying to find out the answer to that question.  It’s being argued out by consumers with businesses and it’s also now attracting the attention of the legal system. I thought my readers in the games and digital creative industries might like a practical summary on what’s been happening recently.  Here we go…

Continue reading Digital resale rights in the EU: the state of play

An international legal guide to games development and distribution

Last year I gave a lecture at the Gamer Tech Law conference in Seattle with the rather ambitious title of “Going Global: legal and business issues for international games development and distribution”.  As you can imagine, that’s a lot to cover – even in a lecture directed at other lawyers.  Anyway, below is the lecture I delivered, in which I talked the audience through international angles on: contracts, IP, distribution structures, consumer protection, advertising, age ratings and privacy.  Enjoy! Continue reading An international legal guide to games development and distribution

The legality of second hand software sales in the EU

The second hand sale of physical and digital software has effectively been declared legal, according to a judgment published by the Court of Justice of the European Union today.  This has the potential to have a real impact on the way that software is sold and consumed – but at the same time the case raises more questions than it answers, so we’re really not in a clear cut situation at all.  Read on for more details… Continue reading The legality of second hand software sales in the EU

Are second hand software sales legal?

The second hand sale of software excites lots of emotive debate: is it a good thing for consumers by giving them choices at more flexible price points, or is it killing publishers? Both?  While that debate continues to rage, a couple of recent legal cases have got me thinking: are second hand software sales actually legal?  Interestingly, one is a US case and the other is a European Union case, so here’s the Transatlantic perspective… Continue reading Are second hand software sales legal?

Games Law Update: April 2012

Hi everyone – here’s your dollop of games law news over the last month, curated by yours truly…


Some thoughts about SOPA

I don’t need to tell you all what the US Stop Online Piracy Act is about, because the Internet has talked about nothing else for the last few days (or at least, those parts of the Internet which haven’t been closed in protest against SOPA). It caused a great, great deal of controversy, far more than the UK’s Digital Economy Act ever did. Now it has been put on ice until “consensus” can be reached. 

This is a short post with some thoughts from me about SOPA.  For anyone who might be in doubt, I was opposed to SOPA, for the reasons I set out below.  That said, I thought it might be helpful to actually read SOPA and give you some legal comments about it.  Here goes…

Continue reading Some thoughts about SOPA