Mobile devices, Planets and the Human Condition


Mod-Chippers across the US get cracked.

, posted: 3-Aug-2007 08:27

In what the press are hailing as a victory against pirates the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency

have raid more than 30 businesses and homes in 16 different states to crack down on the illegal mod chipping of Consoles.

The main direction that alot of the press are taking I'm finding quite disappointing, the general feel is "yay for the crackdown"

but the crackdown wasn't just on Pirated games it was on the Mod-Chips as well.

I (as many of you already know) absolutely abhor the pirating of Games in particular, especially as it's particularly close to home, as I spent a number of years working in the Game industry.

I however do support the ability of people to make legitimate backups especially of their most favourite games and use the backups while keeping the originals in a safe location.


My main motivation behind this belief is due to so many great games that get lost because the manufacturer stop making them and yet you can't download them or buy them from anywhere.

I bet every person reading this has had at least one disk (floppy, cd, dvd, or otherwise) that has become unusable due to unforseen circumstances.

I think its always better if this is a backup. that way you can always re-copy your original and then return it to a safe storage location.

the Good thing is NIntendo is working hard to stamp out counterfeit software and have seized more than
"91,000 counterfeit Wii Discs globally"
I don't know what the law is like here in New Zealand regarding mod-chips,
I'm pretty sure Austrailia considers the use of a mod-chip to play legally made backups to be "Fair-Use" (as is the right to create a backup... I believe in the US you as a consumer do not necessarily have that right)


So what could the console makers do to make things better for us all (this is all just pie in the sky, because unfortunately they won't implement something that makes it better for the users without some benefit to the companies, but hey thats business.)


What I would like to see is a "passkey" type mechanism.

basically you have your Gaming console - you insert your original Disk, then go to your main menu and select "request backup authority"

this then uses the available internet connection to connect to a main server and retrieve a unique id/passkey specifically bound to your original Disk and wii unit.

Then have it set so you can copy the disk and play the backups, with the system randomly authenticating your authority to use that backup with the central server.

that way they could also tag Rental games and should you sell your game/buy a second hand one, all it would take would be to request a regeneration of the passkey using the original disk that would be based on your unit, which would disable the person who sold it to you's backup and allow you to make your own.


I would love to see something like that implemented. Something that preserves the longevity of games that I buy.

I like to have a collection of originals, and I want it to last, unfortunately more often than not, the more enjoyable and great the game, the sooner scratches, dusk and environmental wear and tear, takes it away.





Other related posts:
a Few good, legal and handy ways to listen to music online.
Some thoughts on Twitter, facebook and the dot com bubble burst.
Razer Mamba. fantastic.








Comment by Filterer, on 3-Aug-2007 12:29

The only problem with that, systems will ALWAYS be hacked

Thus meaning that in the end its just becomes easier for regular joe to get hold of the binaries.... Something that they don't want


Comment by barf, on 3-Aug-2007 14:11

it's about incentive too, when barriers are put up people want to defeat them. open-ness combats that and Sony realised while Microsoft missed the boat, they've enabled 'Install other OS' on the PS3. So the PS3 doesn't need a mod-chip as much as the ancestors did.


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