UK Again Says That Mod Chipping Isn't Legal

from the you-bought-it,-but-you-don't-own-it dept

The war against actually being able to own the products you (thought you) bought continues. An appeal by a guy convicted for installing mod chips in video game consoles in the UK has been rejected. Even though the guy himself might not have been violating copyright law, apparently the fact that such mod chips could be used by others to potentially violate copyright law is enough to get him convicted. So, basically, modifying the hardware that you legally purchased? Not legal.

And… in somewhat related news, a bunch of folks have sent in the story of Microsoft cutting off what may be hundreds of thousands of players from Xbox Live for using modded consoles. Microsoft, obviously, is trying to stop players from cheating (one use of a modded console), which is understandable, and certainly within Microsoft’s right. Still, the action does come across as a bit heavy handed. There are perfectly good reasons to mod a gaming console, such as to play unofficial games — and as much as I understand the desire to stop people from cheating or playing pirated games, it still seems like you should be able to modify hardware that you legally purchased.

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Comments on “UK Again Says That Mod Chipping Isn't Legal”

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Freedom says:

Education Camps...

Mike … the problem is that you think to much about the individual. You really need to understand that the era of the individual is over. If the individual must suffer for the greater good of the community then so be it. /sarcasm


P.S. If Apple made an iCar instead of an iPhone … would you really be okay with not being able to change the battery or oil yourself? Would you really be okay with having to get Apple’s approval for every driver? Would you really be okay with having to put passengers behind a locked metal screen or in the trunk for fear that might get close to the wheel? Would you really be okay with a car manufacturer telling you that your good friend can’t rid with you because he didn’t make it thru some subjective approval process? Would you really pay up to have a product that limits you?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Education Camps...

You make a poor comparison.
If you change the engine management chip in your car so that you get extra performance, your insurance (which you need to drive legally) is invalidated. You then get to pay more for the insurance from somewhere else. If the modifications include large spikes on the front of the car, this will be illegal. If you fancy using racing slick tyres on the street, also illegal. If you add a body kit or repaint the car, you are probably OK because you have not changed the overall structure and substance of the car.
Try the same analogy with commercial air. As a passenger, you get locked behind a door away from the pilot and you have to be screened and vetted before you get on.
If you want to participate in something, you get to play by the associated rules.

John Doe says:

Re: Re: Education Camps...

Wow, this is a poor response. You turn his legit analogy into a bad one by mentioning all the things that could be done to a car that would make it illegal to operate on public roads. There are many things you can do that are legal. You could slap a supercharger on it, put an air dam and wing, chop the roof, and many other things. Plus there are many things you can do to 4×4 vehicles to operate them off road like jack them up 6 inches and slap 44″ tires. Not one of those things can be stopped by the auto mfg. Why should electronics be any different?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Education Camps...

I think the analogy still holds.

Modding an xbox might break it, and I have no problem with xbox live banning the customers (I like it when thinks hurt Microsoft). But it shouldn’t be illegal to do it.

You can mod your car, but it requires higher insurance. That seems fair. You are free to do what you want, but other costs are higher.

Likewise, if you own an airplane, you can mod that up too. It still has to be safe enough to take off of the airport. If you are renting a seat on the airplane, no one should expect to modify anything.

If there is a product you own, you should be able to do what you want. Microsoft owns xbox live, and their rule is no mods. It’s a short-sighted rule, but they should be able to enforce it.

DarkNemesis618 (user link) says:

In All Honesty

While I don’t agree with the UK ruling, I do agree with Microsoft’s take on giving the modders the boot. Cheating is a very valid reason to kick someone off and modding makes it all the easier to cheat.

NOW, at the same time, Microsoft is not coming to your door demanding for you to give back the console, they are simply disconnecting and banning the console (not the user if I’m not mistaken) from the XBOX Live service. So if you want to mod your console to play unofficial games, go right ahead. Even if you do get banned, you’re still able to play those games.

Hell the 360 is getting cheap enough nowadays just buy an old one maybe off Craigslist, mod it and use it offline, keeping your normal one for online use.

Mikester says:

Re: In All Honesty

I feel the same. Modding in and of itself should *not* be illegal per the UK ruling and the US DMCA law.

However, it is certainly withing Microsoft’s prerogative to ban detected modded consoles from XBox live, whatever the reason. And unlike recent Nintendo Wii updates, at least you get to keep using the XBox, if only offline. There are many reports of modded Wii consoles “bricking” with the last system update.

kryptonianjorel (profile) says:

Re: In All Honesty

I see you upped the horsepower in your car. You can now speed, so I’m revoking its street privileges. You can still drive it on your own property and on tracks, but you can’t use it on the roads where everyone else drives. Hell, cars are getting cheap enough, you should just get some clunker so you can drive one on a track, and the other on the road.

But seriously, WTF? You own something, you can do whatever you want with it. If M$ wants to kick cheaters off XBOX Live, thats fine, but they should have to PROVE that person x had cheated. You shouldn’t be limited as to what you can do with something you own.

I hope Comcast doesn’t find out I have a VCR! They might cut off my TV service since I can use the VCR to STEAL!!!!111!!1 their TV

Brooks (profile) says:

Re: Re: In All Honesty

No. Microsoft should be able to kick people off of a service if those peoples’ systems are configured in a way that makes it possible for them to cheat without detection.

You’re turning the burden of proof around far too much. Yes, people should be able to mod any product they buy. However, that modification unilaterally changes the relationship between purchaser and service provider, and the service provider has a right to withdraw support, especially when the mods in question are universally aimed at cheating the system one way or another. If you’re one of the six people who only modded your 360 because you wanted to get experience with surface mount soldering, well, you made a poor decision.

Sheinen says:

Re: Re: Re: In All Honesty


‘You modded the engine of your car SPECIFICALLY with the universal intention of speeding on public roads’

That fugger should be banned from driving!

My bike will do a modest 180mph. I would only get that tuned if I was going on a track. And if I were to tune it for track use I would probably get a smaller bike for road usage.


Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: In All Honesty

show me one report of someone who was erroneously banned.

supposedly, one of the previous updates scanned whether you were booting the proper bios or not and whether the disc was authentic. they let this run for months, and gathered up details on people who regularly used their chip… even if offline. obviously they used some threshold (because there is a remote possibility that something in the boot sequence could go wrong), but i haven’t heard of a single person who wasnt running a chipped console getting banned.

Steve says:

Re: Re: In All Honesty

Uh, you are aware that Microsoft aren’t stopping you from doing anything you want to your 360 right? What they’re stopping you doing is using a modified console to use the Xbox Live service that they provide and rightly so. One of the terms for using that service, that you agree to when you sign-up, is that the console is unmoddified.

Modded consoles tend to be used to cheat on on-line gaming, a blight that damn near killed the PC on-line scene not so long ago. The whole point of having a console game on-line is that everyone is on the same level, taking actions like this to protect the vast majority from cheating pillocks is the right move for the service provider. Saying you have to prove they cheated is damn near impossible without committing a LOT of resources so this is the only practical solution.

harbingerofdoom (profile) says:

i actually have two opposing thoughts on this.

1. You bought and paid for the console. by all means you should be able to do whatever you like with it. There should be absolutely no way that any mfgr should be able to tell you what you can or cant do with something AFTER you pay money for it.

2. on the side of the live/PSN network operators (which yes ARE the same as the hardware mfgrs) they still have every right to say modded consoles are not allowed on their networks. you paid for the hardware, the ability to play online is not part of that hardware cost (PSN gives it away for free and its a separate cost for XBL).

i have a modded xbox1 and honestly, the moment i modded it, i knew it would never again be connecting to live. it was a choice i had to make. my 360 on the other hand i actually play online quite a bit with so the downsides to modding it in my case prevents me from doing so.

Anonymous Coward says:

What's ridiculous about banning modded 360s...

Is that it’s not about cheating or preventing piracy at all. If Microsoft really wanted to motivate people to turn over a new leaf, they would ban the associated gamertag. Take away all their friends, all their achievement, their Live identity- everything, not just their ability to connect on that particular console.

The reason they don’t ban your gamertag is so that the connection you have to it and Live compels you to buy a new un-modded xbox and make Microsoft more money. If they banned gamertags, profits would be down, although cheating and piracy would be too.

I would also like to point out, if it were TRULY about protecting copyrights or the Xbox Live community, they would send out a warning to the offender saying, “We have discovered you have a modded Xbox. If this is incorrect, or if you would like to turn over a new leaf, please contact us at if you: don’t have a modded console, would like a guide or assistance with unmodding your console, or wish to inform us that you have unmodded your console. If you don’t contact us within two weeks, even if your console is no longer modded, you will be banned. Please also note that due to your behavior you are now on a watch list and this is your only warning and chance to come clean, next offense will be permanent.”

Sure, in the TOU it explicitly says not to expect to use Live with a modded console, but modders everywhere believe (and in some scenarios, correctly believe) that their altered firmware or hardware will not be able to be caught by Microsoft, so they feel like they can get away with it. Perhaps what they’re intending to do isn’t even something Microsoft is out to prevent, so they see less risk involved, but if they knew there was a risk to get caught or that they would definitely get caught, they would be less likely to do it. Sounds like a stretch, but what do you think is the most likely reason people aren’t constantly murdering other people? Fear of getting caught and punished.

Brooks (profile) says:

Re: What's ridiculous about banning modded 360s...

That seemed like a really lengthy way of saying that Microsoft doesn’t ban people, it bans specific machines. Which, if the problem is modified machines, makes a lot of sense if you look at it as a protective mechanism for the Xbox Live experience and not as a punitive measure aimed at particular people.

Kazi says:

Re: What's ridiculous about banning modded 360s...

Actually, I don’t believe the issue about microsoft banning xboxes is about them being modded. As far as I know they “leaked” one of the recently highly anticipated games with code to see which xboxes would have it installed. Once they realized which xboxes the ‘leaked game’ was installed it on they banned them for using that “leaked” copy of the game. Unfortunately, the only way to use that “leaked” game was to have your xbox modded.

Therefore, people lamely assume that since modded xboxes have been banned all modded xboxes have been banned. The only reason xboxes are banned is because they used the “leaked game” and not because they were modded. They were modded to use illegal copies of games.

Dez (profile) says:

Re: What's ridiculous about banning modded 360s...

I absolutely agree with Microsoft not banning individual player accounts. It’d be like saying “You have a non-street legal car in your garage, we’ll take your drivers license now.”

And as far as evening the playing field goes, I had to pay $60 bucks for the game or whatever rental fee, so should you. This was mostly about the fact that Microsoft banned the consoles that could also play copies of games.

Frosty840 says:

From TFA:

It is not necessary in future to show that a substantial copy of the game is made in Random Access Memory (RAM), all that needs to be shown is that some copyright work contained within the videogame is substantially copied e.g. the image of a game character.

All that needs to be shown is … the image of a game character.

So… If I mod my XBox in such a way as to allow it to have web access, and then play a fullscreen YouTube video of some Tomb Raider footage… Then that’s a provable copyright violation.

Does that make any sense at all?

Fowl says:

I’d just like to point out, that unlike the previous generation xbox, the mods for piracy and the mods for homebrew are completely different.

The piracy (most common) mod invovles reflashing the firmware on the dvd drive, and ONLY allows playing signed MS games, just from DVD+R’s instead of DVD-ROM’s.

Most of the “homebrew” (of which there is little) involve a mod chip on the bios to allow downgrading to old kernel versions. You have to have the latest kernel to go on Live anyway.

It is perfectly reasonable for MS to ban modified consoles (not people!) from their service.

faceless (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Fowl is right. The current DVDROM drive modifications that Microsoft is banning consoles for are only capable of playing pirated and/or backed up Xbox 360 games.

They are not banning the Xbox 360’s of people who modify their consoles to run homebrew/Linux, and the method for modifying Xbox 360’s to do that is completely different from modding to play bootleg games.

You can modify your hardware all you want, you just aren’t allowed to bring it onto Xbox Live after it’s been modded.

As far as cheating goes, Microsoft does indeed ban the Xbox Live account that was cheating if the person was caught doing it. Microsoft also resets the Gamerscore and nullifies ill gained achievements when people hack gamesaves to obtain achievements that they did not earn.

John says:

British Subjects


You forget that the British are not ‘citizens’ but subjects of the Queen and her Government. This means they are only allowed to do work and play with their permission. It comes as no surprise that someone should be prosecuted for providing ‘mod chips’ allowing owners to change the behaviour of the Xbox that they thought they owned. It belongs to Queen and country of course – they are only allowing you to borrow it.
History shows the British cannot tolerate a republic and freedom is something of an anathema – indeed there is pressure from the electorate to remove the workings of the EU Human Rights Act.

cc says:

Two things:
1) It’s near Christmas, so they want to sell more consoles; they want to outsell the PS3 slim. This is the perfect time to ban anything, because it will (hopefully) lead to more console sales in the near future. If they’ve set up everything else right, users won’t turn to the competition.
2) Business idea: buy modded xboxes for dirt cheap, reflash with the original firmware and sell them back with huge margins!!

Griff (profile) says:

Do I own my xBox ?

In the early days the xBox was a loss leader for the games and there was a big fuss when some people figured out how to hack it and make an extremely good value linux box out of the hardware.

Just like the Virgin phone handsets in the earlier TD post, there seems to me to be a problem with the overall contract in this case.

Conmpanies should come clean and say “you don’t own this hardware – you have it on permenant loan and you own a right to use it in a certain way” (a bit like most commercial software if you read the small print).

Then they can legally control what you can and can’t do with it. In this case, by all means run a loss leader and force people to play by your rules to get back the revenue.

But of course they’d lose sales. Someone who pays £200+ for a piece of electronics expects to own it. On the other hand if they want to sell you hardware they should let you own it completely.

I guess what I’m saying is that anyone who offers customers a loss leader on hardware should do so “at their own risk”.

It does appear, however, that the law is not what is in play here but what they can actually stop you doing. So even if it is illegal to play on a modded box in your own home offline there is no way they can stop you. But on the Live service they can. And they can choose to disconnect or block people as they see fit.

In all issues of copyright (compare MS Office and an MP3 ripped from a CD) the realistic extent of the law is defined entirely by what is actually technically possible to enforce, not by morality or even necessarily common sense.

william (profile) says:

From a friend of mine who seems to know a lot about xbox software, what MS did is blow up (literally, they short circuit) an encrypted chip on the board which permenantly and un-reversably disables functions on the xbox.

Some people, possibly including Mike, are probably not aware that what MS did is not just refusing xbox live services to modders but intentionally breaking the xbox. For example, you will not be able to use harddrive anymore.

To use an example, it’s not that Mike banned you from Techdirt and you are not allowed to login anymore. It’s Mike and the techdirt crew send a signal to your motherboard inside your computer, fried some circuits, so not only you cannot log in to techdirt, you are also in possesion of a broken computer.

This has NOTHING to do with cheating, as Mike suggested, as MS is targeting hardware modifications that cut into their profit. A modified console MAY be used for cheating, but MS is not targetting at that type of modification right now. This is a pure piracy crackdown.

BTW, on related news, MS has banned around 600,000 xboxes and is aiming to ban 1,000,000 boxes by Christmas. It’s hard not to believe this is not an actual marketing strategy to make people buy new xboxes during christmas. However, with the recent PS3 price drop, we cannot be certain how many ppl are going to buy another xbox, knowing that MS can break them if they so wish.

On another related news, MS’ xbox policy enforcement department head’s private information has been posted to 4chan (if you don’t know what that is, look it up) and has been receiving death threats to him, his wife, kids and dogs, not to mention the non-stopping phone calls to his private residence.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Your friend is misinformed. The hard drive is completely useable. Anything you save to the hard drive post-ban is ‘unusable’ to prevent someone manipulating saved gamefiles etc on a modded box and plugging it into a new one but if you turn on your modded console today and it comes up banned you can pop the hard drive onto an unmoded 360 and continue on with out skipping a beat

william (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

Well, correct me if I am wrong, the hard drive is usable on a “new” xbox right?

So in my comment, I was right that you cannot use your hard drive anymore on your banned xbox. I just didn’t write it in a clarified way.

In addition, if you happen to read the log of a certain irc channel conversation where the head of the policy department showed up. He actually does not guarantee that your saved games and downloaded contents are saved. He said, and I quote, “HDD from banned to unbanned is okay, but you might have to reformat to get full access to licenses”

Sheinen says:

All you pussyfooting twatballs need to shut up!

Behind all your excuses and ‘human rights’ crap we all know that every one of those modded consoles was right to be banned!

XBL gives access to free trial versions of new games. There’s a plethora of free movies, reviews, trailers, help and communities. You can play by yourself while chatting to friends, you can play with your friends while chatting to strangers. You can stream music, movies and even tv from a media centre pc.

It’s an example of a service that actually does what it should, but for up to 1 million people it’s not good enough. These are the minority of people who download movies and tv-shows purely to avoid ever having to pay for anything. They’re the entire reason the music and movie industry have ammo to throw at responsible file sharers.

Ban the bastards!

Anonymous Coward says:

Sort of a whole mixed bag here.

First, the modding would require at least some attempt to understand or decode what is already happening inside the machine. It gets down to a whole bunch of different issues, from reverse engineering to decompiling code examining copyrighted code. At some point…

Second, Microsoft is well within their rights to throw people off using modded equipment, because that modded equipment can potentially change the game play for all of it’s users. Most network games work by allowing the local machine to calculate out your own player moves and positions, and transmit those positions to others. If you can move faster, better, differently… that is something. Just as importantly, a modded machine may involve a player using pirated or illegal software (unpaid). There is such a potential for abuse and backlash from honest players. You know, the people who actually pay for games?

They are doing what is good for their service, and at the same time protecting their “scarce” asset (online play). If anything Mike, you should be thrilled that Microsoft is so agressively protecting their scarcities.

Overcast (profile) says:

The piracy (most common) mod invovles reflashing the firmware on the dvd drive, and ONLY allows playing signed MS games, just from DVD+R’s instead of DVD-ROM’s.

And that may well not even be ‘piracy’ – you should be allowed to make a copy of the original and play the copy to keep the original in good condition – that too increases the ‘value’ of a system.

A lot of those reasons – are the reason I’m still a PC gamer and not back onto consoles. I gave up consoles when I got my first PC and don’t plan on going back.

The Cenobyte (profile) says:

Xbox cut off takes a gamer to understand

If you think for a minute that those that MOD their xbox are doing it so they can run some home brew game then you have no idea what you are talking about when it comes to gaming.

Those that MOD a concoul do it for either a)Cheating in games, b)Using pirated games, or C) Both. There is almost zero other reasons for doing it.

I am sure that a half dozen people will scream out about how they use it for a Media center or any number of other things. These people are either liars (Cause the stuff other than cheat and play pirated games with a 360 could be done cheaper with equipment designed for it) or are to stupid for their own good (They bought an 360 instead of a PC or a TIVO for the same price to do a worst job).

When you buy a game for the 360 you are paying to play a game without cheaters. MS has a responcibility to remove those that cheat from the game servers and it’s good they do.

Lets try and look at the real cause for stuff before we publish stuff like this in the future please. MS didn’t kill 360’s, they just kicked them off xbox live. If they want to get back, just get an un-MOD’ed machine and try again. They want to play on their MOD machine, they can do it at home off xbox live.

william (profile) says:

Re: Xbox cut off takes a gamer to understand

1) I know a lot of asians living in North America who modded their ps and p2 so they can play Japanese games. Since ps3 is not region locked anymore, those ppl I know started buying games, from Japan without having to mod their machine. This bascially throws your all modders are cheating/pirating reasoning off the window.

2)What MS did is not ONLY prevent you from entering xbox live, but also disabled many functions of your xbox while it’s offline. If they are only banning people off the xbox live, it wouldn’t create such fury. Here is the (partial?)list
*Cannot go on Xbox Live
*Cannot install games to the HDD
*Cannot use Windows Media Centre extender
*Cannot be used to get achievements from backups without corrupting your profile

Now tell me why is #2 and #3 have anything to do with xbox live?

Let say you bought an iPhone and hacked it. And let’s also say that Apple is taking a hard ball approach to the hacked iPhone. Bascially a similar “ban” on you iPhone to this one would be
*You cannot get on AppStore
*You can no long put music/video on your iPhone
*You cannot play music/video to TV/stereo with headphone jack or their proprietary connector
*Attempting to sync with iTunes to get your address book will corrupt your address book(this one is a bit contrived, but you get the picture)

Now, when I translate the affect fucntions to an iPhone, it doesn’t look so good anymore isn’t it?

No one is arguing MS’ right to deny acces to their network. It’s theirs. However, MS is acting like they own the hardware and preventing you to use some of the OFFLINE functions. That’s why players are angry.

W4RM4N (profile) says:

I Don't Blame MS

To MOD the XBOX 360 you will have to rework copyrighted code (That in itself is a no-no).

I have to agree that 99.99% of people MOD consoles to cheat and play copied games. Modern Warfare 2 has been deemed the biggest media release to date. So, why not catch the modded systems with a game that almost everyone will own? It isn’t like MS hid the fact that they will ban you from LIVE if you MOD your system. I actually enjoy the humor in the thought of all the cheaters, excited to play MW2, put in the disc to finally play, and get banned!

The MS conspiracy theory is laughable (banning modded consoles to sell new ones). I am a LIVE customer, and don’t want cheaters playing on servers with me. Thanks MS for banning these cheating scums.

People who MOD their systems should be thankful that they are only losing LIVE privelidges for that console. In my opinion, they should also lose their LIVE account, and be accountable for the reworked copyrighted code.

W4RM4N (profile) says:

Reply to William

William, It isn’t like opening your XBOX360 and only adding hardware that makes it a better system. These people are adding hardware which requires hacked (COPYRIGHTED) code to operate. This is defined as cheating the system. Not to be confused with legally making the system better. When did it become acceptable to do something illegal to better a product?

The Cenobyte (profile) says:

William is the xbox region encoded? No? Oh so all your BS excuses are just that. Got it!

There is 100% no reason to MOD the 360 unless you want to cheat or play pirated games. Maybe your not a gamer and don’t care, but the rest of us that do what those assholes off our network and are happy MS did it.

BTW, if you reset you 360 with a clean drive image it works fine for everything except getting back onto xbox live. These people knew they where breaking the rules, it’s like speeding on a public road, you break the rules and get caught you get in trouble. If you speed enough and break enough rules they will take your right to drive away, and something take your care away. You owned the car, but you have shown that you shouldn’t have it.

My guess is that William here MODs his equipment that then uses it to cheat and now has sand in his crotch over getting in trouble for being a lame asshole to everyone that wants to just have fun and play some games.

william (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Cenobyte, do you play games outside of NA? Since you seems to be oblivious of games that exist outside NA.

Is xbox360 region coded? If it’s not, why do we have this list at play-asia?

It’s lovely that you can just accuse me of modding my equipment. Unfortunately, my PS3 is not modded and I don’t have an xbox360. Why is that? OOOOH BECAUSE THE FREAKIN JAPANESE GAMES I WANT TO PLAY IS REGION LOCKED TO JAPAN!

Hold on, what’s that on my shelf?
-Eternal Sonata – PS3 – NA version
-LIttle Big Planet – PS3 – NA version
-Valkyria Chronicle – PS3 – NA version
-Folklore – PS3 – NA version
-Katamari Forever – PS3 – NA version
-Shirokishi Monogatari – PS3 – JP version
-Agarest Senki – PS3 – JP version
-Agarest Senki Zero – PS3 – JP version
-Rorona No Atlier – PS3 – JP version

I am sure in Cenobyte’s universe that the last four games doesn’t exist.

In fact about 2 months ago I bought an xbox 360 elite from Costco. Then my friend from HK asked me what games I wanted to play. I said that the only reason I was buying it because I wanted to play idolM@ster and Blue Dragon, and also Host C club. He asked, “Did you check the compability list?” Long and behold, I have to return the xbox360 before I even open the box because, what’s that?, they are all region locked.

And why does my HK friend know? Because he recently immigrated from HK to North America, and he’s now caught between a rock and a hard place. Why? Because his HK bought xbox360 recently died (turns on but no display comes out, no RROD). He knows that he has to choose from the following
1. buy NA xbox360, all his previous game useless (all HK bought) and start a new library (might have to rebuy some of the games)
2. buy another HK xbox360, from the net or someone ship it over. The cost would be high and he needs to continue buying HK games and ship them over.

We are talking about a guy who has pretty much owned ALL the console since NES. Currently he has all current gen game consoles, wii, xbox360, ps3, psp, ds. He has all his games legit. He plays so much game that he wrote a java randmizer that actually help him decide which one to play next. He even has 3 set of rock band equipments (because they always ship new stuff with each rockband). I can’t think of anyone I know that is a better customer to game industry than this guy.

And he’s getting screwed over because his REGION LOCKED xbox360 is broken.

What I am saying is this is a real problem. So, in conlusion, Cenobyte, don’t claim knowledge that you do not posses. It just make you look like either a shill for Big Corp, or an ignorant idiot.

PS. to others, I don’t mean to write such a long techdirt unrelated rant and if you read throught it, thank you. I just can’t stand some people claiming that region lock doesn’t exist and/or it’s not a big problem. In my circle of friends, it’s real and it’s a big problem for us.

xbox user says:

legit modding reason

120 GB laptop hard drive for xbox 360 lists for $159. Anyone who has purchased a laptop hard drive in the past few years knows how ridiculous that price is.

500 GB laptop hard drive lists for $100.

Microsoft provides a marketplace to download HD content (legally purchased). Additionally, to save wear on your disc reader (other than the RROD the largest cause of failure to a 360), they allow you to copy games (LEGALLY PURCHASED) to your hard drives. Games run 6-8 GB, each. HD content can be even larger. Thus, if you go through the steps to obtain a MARKET VALUE hard drive to store your LEGALLY PURCHASED data, Microsoft is now accusing you of cheating and kicking you offline. If they ban your gamertag for any ‘modding’, this leaves you COMPLETELY UNABLE to access your (once again) LEGALLY PURCHASED media.

John Mitchell (profile) says:

Slot car mods

When I was a kid, slot car racing was the rage, whether serious types at a local commercial center, or using the home “Aurora” sets. What distinguished the leaders from the pack was the mod skill. Everyone could reach a pretty good skill level at driving as fast as the car and the curves would allow, but getting the car itself to go faster than the original design was the true mark of a champion. The fad no doubt would have passed a lot sooner if modding had been called “cheating” and a “no modding” rule was passed and enforced by copyright law.

There is a reason they call them “games”. Let the gamers play. If they don’t like the way some players play, they will figure out their own home rules, and we are likely to see all kinds of variations emerge.

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