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> We need some laws to protect consumers, that either say that they must release their API if they're going to shut down, or at least make reverse engineering the system legal.

The EFF proposed making a DMCA exemption for reverse engineering game server functionality when the official servers have shut down, making the game useless. And of course the industry (with a little help from the MPAA) has fought it tooth and nail:

http://arstechnica.com/gaming/2015/04/publishers-fight-to-bl...

Apparently "hacking" abandoned games encourages hacking in general, and, as in the classic orphan work argument, allowing reverse engineering for all abandoned works would rob publishers of the revenue for the tiny, tiny portion of them that they may (or may not) re-release some day.

The Librarian of Congress gave limited approval of the proposal, allowing circumvention of the case you mentioned, where an online check is required just to play local single player, but not anything else. Creating a new multiplayer server, for instance, is still illegal.

http://arstechnica.com/gaming/2015/11/u-s-govt-grants-limite...




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