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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-01-2010, 08:50 PM Thread Starter
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Xbox Modder could spend 3 years in prison

Xbox modder could spend three years in prison
Technolog - Xbox modder could spend three years in prison


Want to tinker with this? Might want to think twice.
By Winda Benedetti

Things aren't looking good for a university student accused of modifying video game consoles.

Opening statements were scheduled to begin Wednesday in the federal criminal trial of 28-year-old Matthew Crippen, a student at California State University Fullerton.

Homeland Security authorities arrested Crippen last year on accusations that he violated the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). He is accused of modifying Xbox 360 game consoles for money so the machines could play pirated games and other content.

This is the first time a federal prosecution for console-modding has reached a jury trial. A conviction could land Crippen in prison for up to three years.

A six-woman, six-man jury was selected Tuesday to decide the case. According to Wired, only a few of those panelists said they owned an Xbox or played video games.

The prosecution is expected to bring in witnesses including a Microsoft security expert and the undercover agents Crippen allegedly modded consoles for. He apparently charged between $60 and $80 for his services.

In an interview with Wired, Crippen said he tweaked the consoles not for illegal piracy purposes but to let gamers use decrypted copies of their own gaming software, suggesting that because the Xbox 360 has been known to scratch discs players might need to use a backup copy.

Needless to say, authorities weren't buying that argument.

Things got even more bleak for Crippen and his defense team last week when the judge ruled they could not use the "fair use" defense. Crippen's attorneys had hoped to argue that installing a mod chip in a gaming console was no different than jailbreaking an iPhone to allow owners to use software not approved by Apple. iPhone jailbreaking was OKed under a DMCA exception approved by the U.S. Copyright Office.

Microsoft and other game companies certainly get prickly when users start tinkering with their products. After all, piracy is an enormous issue for the video game industry. In fact, Microsoft had initially issued warnings against tinkerers planning to alter their new Kinect sensor device.

The company, however, backed off those threats as it became clear most modders were altering the new game device to create some pretty cool (read: non piracy-related) innovations.

The take-away message here: Totally cool if you want to tweak our equipment so you can dance around in women's bras. Totally not cool if you want to tweak our equipment to play pirated games.
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-01-2010, 08:53 PM
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Re: Xbox Modder could spend 3 years in prison

I say go for it... It has to stop somewhere.

Does suck for this kid for sure...

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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-01-2010, 08:56 PM
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Re: Xbox Modder could spend 3 years in prison

Quote:
Originally Posted by CSIPSD View Post
I say go for it... It has to stop somewhere.
I agree.

Now if something serious could be done about everything else that gets copied and pirated........we might be making some headway.

.

Never have so many politicians, screwed so many Americans...just to make one black person lose his job.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-01-2010, 09:28 PM
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Re: Xbox Modder could spend 3 years in prison

I dont have a problem with cracking down on putting out warez and stuff but this is completely different.

This is basically the same thing as them saying they will put you in jail for using a programmer on your truck. If ford added that encryption or anything else like that to the truck and you wanted to program it to run some tunes or add a tuner (which is EXACTLY what this kid is REALLY doing) then you would be setting yourself up to be jailed.

This is what really needs to stop. No one should stopped from doing anything they want with what they purchased hardware wise. Thats whats really at the core of this.

The supreme court passed a judgement making it so iphones can be jail broken and the judge in this case said its not an iphone so that defense isnt allowed. Its called a fair use defense.

The mod this kid did allows people to run linux on their xbox 360 and homebrew(free games people have written and posted to the net) on their xbox 360. Yes it can be used to do other stuff too but theres tons of examples where this has been defeated in court.

Anyone remember sony putting viruses on the music cd's making people cd burners not work at all. Sony decided they didnt want people copying their music cd's so they put a virus out on the disc to make it so you cant copy ANY disc ever again till the rootkit is removed.

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-03-2010, 04:14 PM
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Re: Xbox Modder could spend 3 years in prison

Quote:
Originally Posted by crowz View Post
I dont have a problem with cracking down on putting out warez and stuff but this is completely different.

This is basically the same thing as them saying they will put you in jail for using a programmer on your truck. If ford added that encryption or anything else like that to the truck and you wanted to program it to run some tunes or add a tuner (which is EXACTLY what this kid is REALLY doing) then you would be setting yourself up to be jailed.

This is what really needs to stop. No one should stopped from doing anything they want with what they purchased hardware wise. Thats whats really at the core of this.

The supreme court passed a judgement making it so iphones can be jail broken and the judge in this case said its not an iphone so that defense isnt allowed. Its called a fair use defense.

The mod this kid did allows people to run linux on their xbox 360 and homebrew(free games people have written and posted to the net) on their xbox 360. Yes it can be used to do other stuff too but theres tons of examples where this has been defeated in court.

Anyone remember sony putting viruses on the music cd's making people cd burners not work at all. Sony decided they didnt want people copying their music cd's so they put a virus out on the disc to make it so you cant copy ANY disc ever again till the rootkit is removed.


Once I buy a machine, it is owned by me, not by Microsoft, Ford, or Apple.

If I modify it, their only recourse should be to void my warranty. Find another way to stop piracy.




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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-03-2010, 05:33 PM
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Re: Xbox Modder could spend 3 years in prison

If Tractor Supply sells you an injection needle and you use it for an illegal substance.....are they responsible?

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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-03-2010, 06:00 PM
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Re: Xbox Modder could spend 3 years in prison

no, but if there selling the product that goes in it, and you copy the product that goes in it, then I damn sure think there going to do what they can to stop you from copying the product.

And if you use your needle for something illegal thats one thing, but if your selling them to other people or selling your services... You have crossed a line.

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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-03-2010, 06:04 PM
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Re: Xbox Modder could spend 3 years in prison

Find the right attorney and YES they would be liable in todays world.

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