Pirating games I already own.

'Is it legal', 'can I do this' type questions and discussions.
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Zoomy
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Pirating games I already own.

Post by Zoomy » Tue Apr 03, 2007 10:32 am

I've got a copy of a game, which I'd like to install again, but general use and time means that the disk is knackered. Is it legal for me to download a copy for my own use only. As I see it, I should since;

1. I've already paid for it.
2. I still posses it.

However, everyone knows what PC game companies are like, especially Microsoft (whom published and/or developed it).

As far as I'm aware, under U.S copyright law I can't, but I'm not from the U.S. Did I become bound to U.S copyright law when I clicked "I agree" at the EULA when I installed it the first time?

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CopyrightAid
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Post by CopyrightAid » Tue Apr 03, 2007 5:33 pm

Well under UK law there is a provision for making a legitimate back up of software you already own.
Section 50A: Back up copies
50A.-(1) It is not an infringement of copyright for a lawful user of a copy of a computer program to make any back up copy of it which it is necessary for him to have for the purposes of his lawful use.
But as you point out. When you install the software, you agree to their EULA, and are therefore bound by that agreement.

Could they take action? - maybe, though I'm not sure if a judge would uphold the case.

Are they likely to? - If this is legitimate software that you have paid for, and you only make a back up for your own use. No, I doubt any company in their right mind would pursue a case like that.
[Of course it's a different matter if they catch you selling it at your local car-boot sale ;) ]

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Sherif
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Post by Sherif » Tue Apr 03, 2007 5:35 pm

I though back up copies were allowed under US law also.

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Post by CopyrightAid » Thu Apr 19, 2007 8:10 am

Zoomy - You would probably find the following link on help here too..... http://www.copyright.gov/help/faq/faq-digital.html it's to the US Copyright Offices own page on this - so it deals with US law.

To abridge what this says for future readers of this forum..

Under US Law (section 117) you CAN make a back up copy of a computer program provided that:
* the new copy is being made for archival (i.e., backup) purposes only;
* you are the legal owner of the copy; and
* any copy made for archival purposes is either destroyed, or transferred with the original copy, once the original copy is sold, given away, or otherwise transferred.
It it worth stressing that this ONLY applies to computer software (not music, films, etc, etc.)

However the page goes on to state:
It is also important to check the terms of sale or license agreement of the original copy of software in case any special conditions have been put in place by the copyright owner that might affect your ability or right under section 117 to make a backup copy. There is no other provision in the Copyright Act that specifically authorizes the making of backup copies of works other than computer programs even if those works are distributed as digital copies.
So it would appear that your concerns about the EULA are valid, and as I think I inferred earlier, when you install the software, you agree to their EULA, and are therefore bound by that agreement.

For the interests of those visiting sites that claim to sell 'back-up' copies of software (that you already owned of course :)) you should also not that this is not allowed under section 117 - even though the sites often claim that it does.

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