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Licensing - Clamp Down On Graphics


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I thought the issue came down to exclusivity. If I've paid over the odds for the right to own the Juventus/Japan license as solely for my product then I'm not going to be too happy that a quick google search can circumvent that for somebody else's game. Especially, and I think in my minute experience in such matters to be the main issue, given that these sites are advertising, selling, and making a handful of pennies from said game alongside these 'Essential' and 'Must Have' downloads.  

I'd also imagine that SI, and their 'pots of gold' as somebody ludicrously mentioned earlier up, don't and wouldn't ever pay for the 'exclusive' rights for anything as a tool to stop Fifa etc being unable to use them, so I wouldn't expect them now to go all out to do so.

 

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This hasn’t just happened overnight. This is something everyone concerned will have been wrangling with for some time.

The outcome: sites that host collections of copy written images, with the intention of distribution, have had to stop.

Not SI having to change the game.

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31 minutes ago, gavinski33 said:

I thought the issue came down to exclusivity. If I've paid over the odds for the right to own the Juventus/Japan license as solely for my product then I'm not going to be too happy that a quick google search can circumvent that for somebody else's game. Especially, and I think in my minute experience in such matters to be the main issue, given that these sites are advertising, selling, and making a handful of pennies from said game alongside these 'Essential' and 'Must Have' downloads.  

I'd also imagine that SI, and their 'pots of gold' as somebody ludicrously mentioned earlier up, don't and wouldn't ever pay for the 'exclusive' rights for anything as a tool to stop Fifa etc being unable to use them, so I wouldn't expect them now to go all out to do so.

 

Interesting - so it could be Konami rather than the clubs themselves.  

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46 minutes ago, kevhamster said:

Interesting - so it could be Konami rather than the clubs themselves.  

Again, I know next to nothing regarding such things, but I wouldn't be surprised - or at least the highest bidders, for example, putting pressure on the clubs in regards to maximum value. Why should they pay xx million to be sole right holder when free sites can distribute alternative packs anyways, and make 0.01% or whatever by advertising and selling the game at the same time. Murky old business. Look at Liverpool trying to (c) the name Liverpool to stop people from Liverpool selling their own Liverpool scarves in Liverpool?

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11 minutes ago, RBKalle said:

But FM? This one must be the most victimless crime in the history of copyright litigations.

I'd love you to use that argument to someone whose job it is to pursue breaches of copyright.

Edited by forameuss
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4 hours ago, forameuss said:

They won't do it up until the point they're told they have to.  You could go after people hosting the files like they are, but a far more efficient way to go after these breaches in licensing would be to block off the capability.  It's easy to see a situation where the rights holders are able to put pressure on SI to change things.

It's not something they'd want to do, but then I'd imagine they'd want to just put real names, kits, logos in the game anyway, but they legally can't.  As soon as that becomes the case with the moddable aspects, anything they want to do goes out the window.

But it’s also reasonable to see a scenario where SI includes the codes not for people to import graphics, but rather change the skins as they wish. In that way FM is no different to many pc games that are able to be modded. Nothing wrong with that.

As Luca said SI is free to code it’s game however it wants. And anyone putting pressure on it would be someone outside of a licence and therefore not much of a partner? And therefore little leverage?

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2 minutes ago, Team Woopie said:

But it’s also reasonable to see a scenario where SI includes the codes not for people to import graphics, but rather change the skins as they wish. In that way FM is no different to many pc games that are able to be modded. Nothing wrong with that.

They could probably leave the game open to be modded while still blocking off the addition of logos, kits, player faces etc, if it came to that.  Which it likely wouldn't.  It's a hypothetical, which I thought was obvious from the start.

3 minutes ago, Team Woopie said:

As Luca said SI is free to code it’s game however it wants. And anyone putting pressure on it would be someone outside of a licence and therefore not much of a partner? And therefore little leverage?

They're free to do so as long as they're allowed to do so.  The entire game is coded to strictly adhere to conditions of their license.  Those conditions, presumably, can change.  I can't imagine whatever zoomer holds the Juventus rights would be too happy if, once every company outside of Konami baulked at their pricing (presumably), SI still made it possible for Wee Joey Bloggs to have Juventus in his game just fine, without being owed a penny.  That's nothing to do with any other company.

Again though, it's a hypothetical.  And something that's really not worth getting as worked up over as a few of you seem to be.

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23 hours ago, RBKalle said:

Ah screw them greedy clubs/players...

It's clear what they're trying to do... If they can't stop random people from creating and distributing a bunch of copyrighted, but widely used, images on non-commercial material, they'll lobby with Sega/SI in order to make the old graphical add-ons unusable from FM21 onwards (or already in FM20 with a patch?) and force the devs to make the game as "unmoddable" as possible, in order to sell them an expensive official license.

Hopefully, "some people" on the net will find a way (they usually always do), but it'll be more complicated, inconvenient for us end-users. Which is a shame and a disgrace. Nobody's making money with that kind of harmless copyright-override. At worst already filthy rich clubs and organizations are losing what to them is chump change by not extorting some money from SEGA for the EPL official license.

And well, without graphical patches, FM would lose a lot of appeal.

Let's hope they'll realize it'd be a PR own goal for little monetary gain,

BTW, is it known who started this madness?

I would love it if somehow the future FM versions end up having a bug in the code which end up letting graphical mods be added to the game...

 

*Hint hint*

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I can kind of tie this in with the regen faces, which they made much uglier and much less customizable a few years ago because apparently they needed to "get ready for 3D."

Never mind that the overall level of graphical fidelity is nowhere near having accurate 3D faces in the game, or that they'd also have to render 3D images for every real player in the database. But if player images are only there for licensed leagues, maybe it's easier to push for this down the line.

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Never been bothered about player pics they take up to much room. But you have to have logos and kits. No-one has ever complained about the facepack i do or the kits i get made.

Edited by cel1234
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If this is enforced it would simply kill the game for thousands of players. Nobody wins.

 

If it's down to a handful of greedy clubs or players who already make millions from image rights, they should be called out for people to boycott and make their anger known.

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6 hours ago, RBKalle said:

On the other hand, Juventus doesn't lose a penny by a few 10k FM players downloading a "name fix" to get the names right and to make FM more enjoyable. Nor do SEGA or SI, at least directly, by leaving their coding "open".
There isn't a FM Official EPL edition selling for £50 gathering dust on metaphorical shelves because users are purchasing FM Vanilla for £30 and then apply every additional graphics they can put their paws on.

I'll start by saying. In sentiment I completely agree with you. 

My fear is this - Juventus does lose a penny. Many a penny. Why?

...Because if the FM Community were not providing these resources for free. SI & The 'Football Manager' team would come under pressure to provide these. Many people (Myself included) in this thread have stated they would not be interested in the game without the Graphical & Licence improvements provided by the community.

So without a community provided solution, SI come under heavy pressure from their fan base to acquire official licences. They would need to pay for these.  Here is where it can get interesting. The Premier League clubs for example, diminish their own ability to control their rights, they place a lot of the authority and control of image and licence distribution to the Premier League body - A "Collective Licencing System". There are exceptions where certain players and clubs retain autonomy, but as a general rule it applies. 

Serie A and the case of Juventus is slightly different. The ability and authority to licence specific clubs badge & kits etc. rests with the club itself.  So if FM wanted the 'whole package' with Juventus to use their Intellectual Property - They would need to pay Juventus for it.  And we are talking BIG MONEY. 

Now imagine you are the Chief Executive of Konami (Developers of Pro Evolution Soccer football game) - You've just a secured a lucrative contract with Juventus for EXCLUSIVE rights to their images, licence, kits & badge - And to your frustration, there is this very popular FM community taking content you've just paid millions for and coding it into the Football Manager game for free! Not only this, but Sports Interactive are making this extremely easy to do and are even hosting methods and links on their own official website to enable this. 

...Well you'd be pretty upset.

Edited by Saint_Lane
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Rights holders have to be seen to seen to be enforcing their copyrights, I get it. But then it affects something you're personally invested in and it stinks! No-one wins here. The strict enforcement is a necessary part of business but it's a sweeping net that catches the tiniest of fish. We lose our game immersion and love, SI sell less games, what does that mean over a few years? Decline of some sort for sure as sales are king, but that's not important - Zebre of Turin will have survived this crisis no thanks to you FM thieves. 

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39 minutes ago, Zeonflux said:

I may have missed it in reading this thread but has there been any official word about this from someone at SI?

No and I doubt there ever would be. This doesn't really have much to do with SI. They are free to code their game as they wish. If third party websites choose to host/distribute/use logos/names/etc then that's between the third party site and the rights holder. Nobody can legally force SI to lock down customisation (e.g. by way of an injunction). The only thing that might happen is that a team/league which has granted a licence to SI might impose certain conditions upon the grant of that licence. E.g. the Premier League might say that the game cannot permit users to import their own facepacks otherwise they won't grant a licence. But somebody like Juventus who haven't in any event granted a licence to SI can only go after the person who is infringing their trade mark (i.e. the third party) - SI hasn't infringed Juventus' trade mark rights.

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3 hours ago, phnompenhandy said:

If this is enforced it would simply kill the game for thousands of players. Nobody wins.

 

If it's down to a handful of greedy clubs or players who already make millions from image rights, they should be called out for people to boycott and make their anger known.

The license holders win. If FM sales drop, it doesn't impact them at all - they're not making anything from it anyway. But potentially, it forces SEGA to pay up for the license, or a portion of FM players switch to a different game that will pay (e.g. a new FIFA Manager, or even just a only artificially similar game like FIFA's Career Mode), and they have a fairly substantial win.

It's a very similar argument to game piracy. The pirates will point out that them playing a downloaded copy of the game costs SI nothing, which is true. And the majority of them wouldn't buy the game if it couldn't be downloaded for free. But a minority would buy it rather than not play, and it's entirely legitimate for SI/SEGA to oppose the entire practice on that basis, even though it might have some edge benefits too (e.g. children or financially unstable adults who pirate the game, love it, and end up buying future copies when they're able to do so).

Edited by Spurs08
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1 minute ago, Spurs08 said:

The license holders win. If FM sales drop, it doesn't impact them at all - they're not making anything from it anyway. But potentially, it forces SEGA to pay up for the license, or a portion of FM players switch to a different game that will pay (e.g. a new FIFA Manager), and they have a fairly substantial win.

Yes. This is spot on.

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6 ore fa, forameuss ha scritto:

I'd love you to use that argument to someone whose job it is to pursue breaches of copyright.

I know it sounds daft, but they'd have probably much bigger fishes to fry than a small portion of the relatively small fanbase of a niche game "stealing" clubs' logos, kits and players' faces to put them in their game (which is mostly played offline as single-player).

As said, there is NO "licensed option" that we are ignoring and damaging by downloading graphics packs.

Mods have "fixed" unlicensed stuff in games for decades and nobody seemed to care even when those circumventing add-ons were actually creating unfair competition (ie. F1 game without official license getting official liveries, while devs of fully-licensed game forked out good money to legally use them).

Again: going by the letter of the law, those greedy clubs may have a case. From any other standpoint, it's a ****** move deserving all the disdain and shaming the internet could muster (for a trivial matter).

49 minuti fa, Saint_Lane ha scritto:

...Because if the FM Community were not providing these resources for free. SI & The 'Football Manager' team would come under pressure to provide these. Many people (Myself included) in this thread have stated they would not be interested in the game without the Graphical & Licence improvements provided by the community.

So without a community provided solution, SI come under heavy pressure from their fan base to acquire official licences. They would need to pay for these.  Here is where it can get interesting. The Premier League clubs for example, diminish their own ability to control their rights, they place a lot of the authority and control of image and licence distribution to the Premier League body - A "Collective Licencing System". There are exceptions where certain players and clubs retain autonomy, but as a general rule it applies. 

Serie A and the case of Juventus is slightly different. The ability and authority to licence specific clubs badge & kits etc. rests with the club itself.  So if FM wanted the 'whole package' with Juventus to use their Intellectual Property - They would need to pay Juventus for it.  And we are talking BIG MONEY. 

True, but how much money is there in such a deal?

We're not talking FIFA (and that monster called FUT) here. FM, as popular as it is, is still a game with a specific and small audience. And, again going by what I see on FB groups, those who go out of their way to add custom graphics are too a fraction of said small customers pool.
So the financial loss Leagues and individual clubs take from "illegal modding" is probably negligible in the grand scheme of things. How much money can EPL or Juventus realistically ask for to fully license FM?

I'd see it as a "free" promotional tool, with fans from across the world managing the club and the league. And likely growing fond of it and ending up paying to watch games, to buy merchandise etc.

Is enforcing "Zebre Turin" with a black and white sash kit really preserving the club's "integrity"? Or would turning a blind eye to fans creating, distributing and using the real logo and kits be better in the long run, also for brand recognition?
 

49 minuti fa, Saint_Lane ha scritto:

Now imagine you are the Chief Executive of Konami (Developers of Pro Evolution Soccer football game) - You've just a secured a lucrative contract with Juventus for EXCLUSIVE rights to their images, licence, kits & badge - And to your frustration, there is this very popular FM community taking content you've just paid millions for and coding it into the Football Manager game for free! Not only this, but Sports Interactive are making this extremely easy to do and are even hosting methods and links on their own official website to enable this. 

...Well you'd be pretty upset.

If there were a Championship Manager 2020 or FIFA Manager 20 sporting a fully licensed Juventus or EPL on the cover art as a main promotional/selling strategy, I'd totally see the point then. But more from the devs' point of view.

Of course if being the only distributor of the X brand costs me an arm and a leg, I'll be quite pissed off should a rival distributor sell a knockoff version of my exclusive product...

But here we're talking about the only show in town. They may as well only sell GUCGI fakes alongside legit brands, but it's not their problem if customers then purchase equally fake GUCCI labels to slap over the wrong name.
Clearly, the copyright owners COULD step in, but I maintain a costs-benefits-backlash analysis could make them think twice about it.

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16 minuti fa, Spurs08 ha scritto:

It's a very similar argument to game piracy. The pirates will point out that them playing a downloaded copy of the game costs SI nothing, which is true

I disagree.

The mere PRESENCE of a free alternative can (and in the past DID) cost SI money. Loyal FM'ers will always purchase it and even pre-order, but many many casuals would likely go "oh, FM is out, and the cracked version is out too... Let's try it and if I like I'll purchase it later"

In the case at hand, the portion of loyal fans who wouldn't purchase FM without modding support would be FAR bigger than the portion of half-interested "pirates" who used to get the game for free.

Greedy leagues/clubs apparently are in a win-win situation: if SI gives in, they make money. If SI doesn't budge, SI loses N sales and clubs will have to find the yearly wage of their backup keeper by other means... But should FM eventually die because of lower interest and dwindling sales, clubs and leagues will lose much more.
FM is a monopoly, and nobody should have any interest in harming the only place where they can sell their brand/product within a specific, defined customers pool. That's a lose-lose scenario.

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I just found out about this the other day when a friend asked me if he messed up because the graphics pack he installed had every single logo except for MUTD.
And then he found out that they're clamping down on custom packs.

SI should never budge.

Should just release a game with 0 real names or graphics. It's not like they're drawing any new, casual buyers anymore.
It's either long-time players who all use custom graphics, aynway, or advanced users who're not into casual management modes of FIFA and PES.

FIFA/PES have competely different targeted audience and are completely different games to FM.

But what else to expect from dumpster tier companies like Konami and EA. They would've sold their mothers if it meant a bit more profit.
Much like the only club which doesn't even have a real stadium name. But it figures, since they changed their logo to a dumb letter so it's more marketable. But they can't even fill out a 40k stadium for one of the two biggest derbies in the season.

Their greed knows no limits.

10 hours ago, forameuss said:

Well I'm glad you took time out from your latest case to post the legal standing, but I'm still not sure that would stand up.

SI have left the game open to modding, and specifically open to modding in ways to get around licenses.  Yet such things are, naturally, not to be discussed on the forums.  As it can get people into trouble, up to and including SI.  You've already said that it's impossible to stop people from hosting the files.  The movie industry realised that pretty quickly.  Go after one source, and it's likely another several will pop up.  Or you, as the rights holder, could just go to the one place that would stop it.  Coincidentally, that source already pays you a lot of money.  

Again, it's easy to see where pressure could come.

The thing is that SI will never be able to prevent the mods unless they remove the logos and kits alltogether.
They can "hide" the files somewhere, but there's always a workaround because there's no other way to have logos and kit than to have image files.
Maybe we'll have to manually replace every single logo, but it will still be doable.

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I'll start as i started the other comment. I agree with you  in principle with what you are saying. But.

30 minutes ago, RBKalle said:

FM, as popular as it is, is still a game with a specific and small audience.

  • This is off the mark. FM sold over 2 Million Copies in 2019.  It consistently performs as one of the top selling PC titles.
30 minutes ago, RBKalle said:

True, but how much money is there in such a deal?

  • "FIFA generated $600 million in licensing rights for the 2015-2018 cycle" (FIFA Annual Report Summary). Juventus earned over (E)40m in licencing sales prior to the Konami Deal! There is enormous amounts of money in licencing and in particular granting access to 3rd parties to use said licences.
30 minutes ago, RBKalle said:

I'd see it as a "free" promotional tool, with fans from across the world managing the club and the league.

I wish all companies shared your philosophy. Unfortunately this is not the case. Companies will spend hundreds of thousands of pounds not only registering their Trademarks, but many more thousands in defending their IP and unauthorized use of their protected property.

30 minutes ago, RBKalle said:

Clearly, the copyright owners COULD stop in, but I maintain a costs-benefits-backlash analysis could make them think twice about it.

Lets be clear here. They are already stepping in. FM Scout have already withdrawn the ability to download graphics from their site citing adverse legal ramifications as the reason. Companies spend millions of pounds to trademark and protect their property, do not underestimate their resolve in trying to protect it. 

Edited by Saint_Lane
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There must be thousands of people over the years who have started following and supporting a club or a footballer after playing Football Manager. Which in turn has led to them purchase merchandise and tickets. 

FM has helped raise the profile of countless clubs and players. If the licencing gets stricter and we have to endure more clubs calling themselves zoo animals, not letting us use their badges or see the players faces, then they will be shooting themselves in the foot PR wise.

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11 minutes ago, Bothan Spy said:

There must be thousands of people over the years who have started following and supporting a club or a footballer after playing Football Manager. Which in turn has led to them purchase merchandise and tickets. 

FM has helped raise the profile of countless clubs and players. If the licencing gets stricter and we have to endure more clubs calling themselves zoo animals, not letting us use their badges or see the players faces, then they will be shooting themselves in the foot PR wise.

The thing is that small clubs would never do such things. It's the greedy ones that are already swimming in money.

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23 minutes ago, Bothan Spy said:

There must be thousands of people over the years who have started following and supporting a club or a footballer after playing Football Manager. Which in turn has led to them purchase merchandise and tickets. 

FM has helped raise the profile of countless clubs and players. If the licencing gets stricter and we have to endure more clubs calling themselves zoo animals, not letting us use their badges or see the players faces, then they will be shooting themselves in the foot PR wise.

You are right. Really spot on. However the clubs are willing to let us use their badges, faces and kits. But for a price. It's a product they can sell. And computer games are a lucrative market. They will not sit idly by whilst their assets are offered for free without their permission.

 

The fundamentals of the situation we are faced with is that the legality of the matter is undeniable.

  1. The hosting & distribution of protected player images, kits & logos is illegal unless the access and authority to do so has been granted. We might not like that. But I do not believe that statement can be challenged on legal grounds. 
  2. Sports Interactive have benefited significantly from a community which patches 'holes' in its games through Graphical Mods / Licence Fixes & Downloads that do include copyrighted material. Many of us here have already stated we only buy this game knowing we can 'self remedy' its perceived flaws.
  3. Sports Interactive, even on their very own hosted forums, allow links and advice to be published on how to acquire and gain access to these Graphical Mods & Enhancements. As well as making the modding and implementation of 'Graphical / Licence enhancements' extremely easy. Here is where they may face challenge. 
Edited by Saint_Lane
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This is such a disgusting move, but something I would not loose sleep with.

This is loosing battle for the clubs/players who sent those warnings to FM Scout and other fan sites. Because we as true fans of FM, will continue to play FM with workarounds, if it means playing in fantasy leagues, so be it. I have no issue in creating fantasy clubs. Being doing it since the days of Sensible Soccer, no problem in continue to doing it so in FM/FIFA/PES. Can't play as Juventus, fine. Then welcome Turin Zebras. No Man United... fine, Then welcome Manchester Devils. Can't use Messi. Then I baptise you as Andrés Imsse. I play for the fun of the game, i play these games for the love of football. if it means the bankruptcy of some iconic, but power and money hungry clubs. So be it!!!!!

If every football fan decided right now to email their respective clubs, saying: "Either you stop this practice of hurting us how to enjoy our medium, or i will cancel my season ticket or stop giving in any shape or form my money to you!"     You will see the world record of speed of backtracking their decision. If they decide to call our bluff so be it. After few months of a few millions in the red, viewership down would make them wake up. You see in football or any sort of sports who holds the power and the money it is us. Not them. They depend on us fans. No fans, no money.

I hope SI, doesn't remove the inclusion of graphics and the use of the editor, because I for one would make a fantasy clubs and leagues, with fake history created by the community. Not as many clubs, versus the real life teams, but with the community working together it can created large number of fantasy clubs and leagues. Fantasy logos, we can created them ourselves, no matter how ugly they will be. Facepacks, well the community can provide them or regen 3D faces, since with each version SI improve them.

In conclusion, bad move clubs/players. You choose this path, I hope you are ready to face the heavy consequences of declaring war to the fans.

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On 11/11/2019 at 04:46, Archibalduk said:

Copyright and trade mark laws are intended to stop people from "using" logos and trade marks without their permission. You cannot just add a disclaimer to your website because you're still infringing the copyright/trade mark holder's rights. In the UK the person claiming infringement would need to send a "letter before action" before bringing a claim to court (this is a requirement under the UK's Civil Procedure Rules).

The sad reality is that the only way you can comply with the law is by seeking a licence from the copyright/trade mark holder which they would obviously charge for.

I think you can under the "Fair Use" Clause. However, if you are making a monetary gain, you will be in breach. ( my understanding)

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Maybe my age is showing here, but what or who is going to stop us the end user using logos and facepacks we've already got? Obviously if SI do something to the in game ID's then the graphics config files will need changing or if SI do something to stop graphics being added, there literally can't be anything stopping us using what we've already got? Appreciate new players may have trouble downloading packs.

I'm with a lot of others here, without the club badges I can't play, I hate those default ones with a passion. Kits and faces I can do without, but not club badges. But I can't see SI changing FM20 this close to release that stops us adding the graphics, if, and I think it's a big if they change something from FM21 that stops graphics being added, it's going to alienate a lot of users.

 

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8 hours ago, Bothan Spy said:

There must be thousands of people over the years who have started following and supporting a club or a footballer after playing Football Manager. Which in turn has led to them purchase merchandise and tickets. 

FM has helped raise the profile of countless clubs and players. If the licencing gets stricter and we have to endure more clubs calling themselves zoo animals, not letting us use their badges or see the players faces, then they will be shooting themselves in the foot PR wise.

Without a doubt, I actually visited Wroclaw's stadium last year when I was in Poland because I managed them on FM. Got a soft spot for Motherwell because of FM as well.

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10 hours ago, Zeonflux said:

I may have missed it in reading this thread but has there been any official word about this from someone at SI?

It's nothing really to do with SI. They know it happens, but don't condone it or tell people how to do it or that they should do it - they keep an arm's length from talk about logo or face packs.

The people doing the threatening of legal action, and the only people who could comment on their specific motivations, would be the rightsholders (football clubs, competition organisers, etc), and they're likely only going to say "We are ensuring that our intellectual property rights are being respected by raising concerns to websites and individuals who appear to be in breach of relevant intellectual property law and giving them the opportunity to rectify their breach without the need to take further legal action."

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From another angle, we are what? A week away from launch?  And that launch is coinciding with the launch of Stadia right? I imagine this will die down considerably in the coming months, even if it means 'approved vendors' of the game can no longer direct us to such packs and fixes. If only we had DM's eh?

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3 hours ago, DirtyJoe said:

I think you can under the "Fair Use" Clause. However, if you are making a monetary gain, you will be in breach. ( my understanding)

There is no "fair use" clause in UK copyright law, just FYI. There's "fair dealing", which is similar, but only applies for things such as using a copyrighted work for research purposes, news or critique, etc, even use in the manner us individuals use it wouldn't actually be covered by "fair dealing" in the UK, and so would still be a breach of copyright law (and that's ignoring that trademark law is different to copyright law, and doesn't share the same limited "fair use" exemptions. It's just that it wouldn't be economically or practically viable for the rightsholders to go after the individuals, which is why they go for the sites hosting the images instead.

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12 minutes ago, JordanMillward_1 said:

There is no "fair use" clause in UK copyright law, just FYI. There's "fair dealing", which is similar, but only applies for things such as using a copyrighted work for research purposes, news or critique, etc, even use in the manner us individuals use it wouldn't actually be covered by "fair dealing" in the UK, and so would still be a breach of copyright law (and that's ignoring that trademark law is different to copyright law, and doesn't share the same limited "fair use" exemptions. It's just that it wouldn't be economically or practically viable for the rightsholders to go after the individuals, which is why they go for the sites hosting the images instead.

Happy to be corrected, but isn't the fair dealing law / policy only applied if someone, or a company is making a monetary gain from it? As far as I am aware, these FM fan sites don;t charge for their logos, facepacks and kits? Appreciate that the clubs logos and players faces are probably licenced somewhere, but no one is making money from it. 

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3 minutes ago, bigmattb28 said:

Happy to be corrected, but isn't the fair dealing law / policy only applied if someone, or a company is making a monetary gain from it? As far as I am aware, these FM fan sites don;t charge for their logos, facepacks and kits? Appreciate that the clubs logos and players faces are probably licenced somewhere, but no one is making money from it. 

They advertise and sell the game from their site as 'approved vendors, and offer premium download speeds for a fee, whilst calling these add-ons as essential and must have. To be fair, it might be a fraction of a single percent of each and every game they sell or click they get or whatever, but it's monetary gain. Liken it, if you will, to the pubs a few years back showing just Manchester United or Liverpool matches or whoever. Even if they had Sky all bought and paid for legally they were still making money out of beer sales for a match they had no right to show.

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9 hours ago, GunmaN1905 said:

The thing is that SI will never be able to prevent the mods unless they remove the logos and kits alltogether.

They can "hide" the files somewhere, but there's always a workaround because there's no other way to have logos and kit than to have image files.
Maybe we'll have to manually replace every single logo, but it will still be doable.

There will definitely be ways to "block" them off for users to amend if you hide or obfuscate the means of doing it enough.  Of course, it also follows that there's often then a way around that for a user that's determined enough.  

Again, it's hypothetical.  It wouldn't be totally impossible for SI to do if they really wanted to.  Which they don't.  Nor is there any indication that they'll be forced to.

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14 hours ago, TioPatinhax said:

Not buying FM also, if logos, real names and kits are not possible 

 

As things stand, they are possible - especially if you already have them for an older game.  All you'd need to do in terms of graphics is copy your FM19 graphics into the equivalent folder for FM20 and that will work.

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1 hour ago, forameuss said:

Again, it's hypothetical.  It wouldn't be totally impossible for SI to do if they really wanted to.  Which they don't.  Nor is there any indication that they'll be forced to.

I'm of the mind now that it's along similar lines to the Kodi thing. Is it Kodi's fault that people use their platform to stream illegally? And have Amazon etc have any right to demand Kodi change their programme to prevent it? No.

There's been a lot of talk on this thread that's usually very close to the knuckle, particularly about *that* fix and *those* sites, and there's been no word whatsoever from a Mod so I'm assuming that the official position from SI is that there isn't one. It's for those that promote and provide said content to deal with, which they have done by apologising and removing the downloads from their pages.

Will they still be available? Undoubtedly. Will they be a little harder to find? Of course. Same as Kodi :)

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11 ore fa, Saint_Lane ha scritto:

I'll start as i started the other comment. I agree with you  in principle with what you are saying. But.

  • This is off the mark. FM sold over 2 Million Copies in 2019.  It consistently performs as one of the top selling PC titles.

FIFA 19 sold 2.5M copies in the UK only...

You can't really compare the magnitude of the two. FM is a popular niche franchise in a niche genre about the world's most popular sport. FIFA is a popular franchise catering to the broader audience of the world's most popular sport.
PES'es figures are much lower than FM though for years, so that's a fairer comparison. And, lo and behold, KONAMI's biggest flaw is indeed the lack of official licenses (and of a predatory-addictive online gambling gamemode)

Also, don't forget that 2M are respectable figures for the PC market, but are almost nothing if compared to console games.

So I maintain that chasing licensing breaches on a PC-only game is both a dick move and a waste of time and energy.

 

11 ore fa, Saint_Lane ha scritto:
  • "FIFA generated $600 million in licensing rights for the 2015-2018 cycle" (FIFA Annual Report Summary). Juventus earned over (E)40m in licencing sales prior to the Konami Deal! There is enormous amounts of money in licencing and in particular granting access to 3rd parties to use said licences.

As said above, FIFA is one of the biggest cashcows in gaming.

Which explains why Top Clubs are either negotiating with KONAMI for ludicrous amounts of money to get an exclusive deal and become the headliners of a (struggling) second-best game or are simply content with being a Top Dog in FIFA, being paid to be visible and playable in 20 millions of homes.

I'm no expert, so I have no idea about how much can licensing rights for FM can be sold for, but with 1.5-2M copies worldwide being the standard target, we're indeed talking chump change compared to FIFA's billionaire revenues allowing for ridiculous fees.

11 ore fa, Saint_Lane ha scritto:

I wish all companies shared your philosophy. Unfortunately this is not the case. Companies will spend hundreds of thousands of pounds not only registering their Trademarks, but many more thousands in defending their IP and unauthorized use of their protected property.

I still don't see how FANS using IP for cosmetic reasons is a problem.

Nobody's SELLING repackaged FM copies with fixes for the unlicensed leagues and clubs. Nobody's selling the packs either. Sure, websites may charge an extra for premium DL speed and the appeal of the website/community is surely helped by the presence of graphics packs, but it's marginal.

And, I can't stress this enough, it's been a thing since the birth of PC gaming modding 25 years ago. Entire communities were born around IP "violations", but nobody seemed to care because even the greediest companies did understand that it's better to let some things slide for free publicity rather than risking losing it and getting NO financial benefit anyway due to devs not being able to afford official licensing.

11 ore fa, Saint_Lane ha scritto:

Lets be clear here. They are already stepping in. FM Scout have already withdrawn the ability to download graphics from their site citing adverse legal ramifications as the reason. Companies spend millions of pounds to trademark and protect their property, do not underestimate their resolve in trying to protect it. 

Of course those sites not being backed up by rich companies had to buckle under...

The football blog I write for had to take down ALL the images that weren't listed as "free to redistribute". Not even giving credit was deemed enough and the owner had to PAY a fine that, I guess, far surpassed the revenue he got by clicks and banners.
So now we're stuck with WikiCommons and Flickr images. And club logos... until some PoS club decide to come after us again because we dared to use their logo in an article talking about their club...

Fair use should be protected much more, but we're sadly going in the opposite direction.

It's laughable really. I could see how the "personal advantage" becoming the deciding factor over "monetary profit" in case of piracy (as I'm saving money by downloading pirated material I'm not purchasing), but I don't see how we (and FM Scout) are harming Man United or Zebre Turin by applying their logos and kits to our copy of the game.
Technically they'd also sue fans who print their own fan-shirt with the club's logo on a plain t-shirt now?!

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EA posted profits of just shy of 5 billion dollars in the last year.

Konami reported 2.9 billion.

Both these companies will put most of their effort into FIFA/PES.

SI cant compete.

I'd be amazed if it wasnt those two companies kicking up a fuss rather than the clubs.

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1 hora atrás, kevhamster disse:

As things stand, they are possible - especially if you already have them for an older game.  All you'd need to do in terms of graphics is copy your FM19 graphics into the equivalent folder for FM20 and that will work.

I do not, unfortunately

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