Nintendo Thrilled To Have Game Copy Devices Found Illegal In France

from the why-adapt-when-you-can-litigate dept

Earlier this week, Nintendo published a press release announcing that France has joined with several other nations in banning what it terms 'game copiers' (pdf and embedded below), by which it means mod chips. This news really comes as no surprise as console manufacturers have done a pretty good job of convincing politicians around the globe that such console modding devices have no legitimate use outside piracy.

While the ruling only deals with the importation and distribution of these devices, it has not stopped Nintendo from spreading FUD among game consumers regarding these devices. According to its anti-piracy faq on mod chips:
Are infringing devices such as game copiers for Nintendo Handheld systems or mod chips for Nintendo Wii console illegal in the U.S.?

Yes. Game copiers that are used to copy video game software without authorization onto any type of memory device or the hard drive of a personal computer are illegal. They enable the user to make, play and distribute illegal copies of video game software, which violates Nintendo's copyrights and trademarks. Mod chips are also designed to circumvent the copy-protection security system and deem the detection process inoperable, enabling the console to play pirated or illegal copies of Nintendo games downloaded from the Internet. Based upon the functions of these devices, they are illegal.
Sadly, this completely avoids the fact that such devices are capable and are used frequently to run software and games that are completely free and legal. This type of misdirection is abundant on that website. These devices do what Nintendo has failed to do -- open up the platform to a wider variety of software and games.

As for Nintendo, it's continuing its efforts to fight these modding devices rather than recognize and adapt to what the consumers of its devices want. With the introduction of the iPhone and Google's Android, consumers and developers are getting accustomed to (fairly) open marketplaces for apps and games. Yet, Nintendo is still holding strong to the idea that its platforms need to be locked down and any effort to open them up to the greater development community should be stamped out. Nintendo almost fell when it refused to adapt to changes in the market before. If Nintendo isn't careful, it could end up falling once again. Who knows if it will survive that fall?

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  1. icon
    E. Zachary Knight (profile), 7 Oct 2011 @ 10:38am

    Re:

    Actually, Nintendo has never sold a console below cost. They have always made a profit on their hardware.

    That is not to say that the majority of their profit comes from game sales, because that is the truth.

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