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Firefall dev shutting down beta in protest of SOPA

Firefall developer Red 5 Studios has notified Shacknews that it will shut down its ongoing beta and close its website on for 24 hours beginning January 18 in protest of the 'Stop Online Piracy Act.'

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Firefall developer Red 5 Studios has notified Shacknews that it will shut down its upcoming title's beta and website for 24 hours beginning January 18 in protest of the 'Stop Online Piracy Act' (SOPA).

Calling SOPA "misguided legislation," Red 5 Studios CEO Mark Kern said the proposed bill would hurt smaller game companies, "who will not have the legal resources or lobbying presence to protect themselves from unwarranted shutdown."

"We are extremely disappointed in this misguided legislation. We are also ashamed of the ESA for supporting a bill which is clearly not in the best interests of gamers or the game industry," Kern added.

The Entertainment Software Association recently came out in support of the bill, and by association with the group, a laundry list of major game companies are standing behind it as well. While some ESA members have spoken out against the bill, none have canceled their membership.

"No we are not, and now we never will be," Kern told me when asked if Red 5 Studios supported The ESA.

When asked if Red 5 Studios would appear at future E3 events considering the company's position against the ESA, CEO Mark Kern said: "No, we will not attend E3 unless ESA reverses their stance."

[Update: 7:35pm PT] "I just had my staff cancel our E3 plans," Kern added in a follow-up email.

Red 5 Studios is joining Reddit in protest of SOPA by going dark on January 18. We will be taking down our website, community site and Firefall beta for 24 hours on the 18th.

    We are extremely disappointed in this misguided legislation. We are also ashamed of the ESA for supporting a bill which is clearly not in the best interests of gamers or the game industry.

      This bill, and it's sister bill, Protect IP, will shut down live streaming, shout casting, user generated content and have a chilling effect on game innovation and social media.

        Most of all, it hurts the smaller game companies, who will not have the legal resources or lobbying presence to protect themselves from unwarranted shutdown.

          We issue a call to all our industry peers, including developers, publishers and game press, to join us in letting the ESA know they do not represent our views on this issue, and strongly oppose SOPA and PIPA.

            -- via Mark Kern, Red 5 Studios

            From The Chatty

            • reply
              January 12, 2012 5:55 PM

              Xav de Matos posted a new article, Firefall dev shutting down beta, site in protest of SOPA.

              Firefall developer Red 5 Studios has notified Shacknews that it will shut down its ongoing beta and close its website on for 24 hours beginning January 18 in protest of the 'Stop Online Piracy Act.'

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                January 12, 2012 5:58 PM

                Need google/facebook to shut down for a week to get some attention

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                January 12, 2012 6:01 PM

                I'm against SOPA but http://chattypics.com/files/NOCFirefall_nrfl6kk7xy.jpg

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                January 12, 2012 6:02 PM

                Right, because the guys in charge of SOPA have been playing a fuck load of Firefall lately.

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                  January 12, 2012 6:19 PM

                  a lot of users that don't know about the issue probably do though

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                  January 12, 2012 8:06 PM

                  Well, no shackers have been playing! ZING.

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                January 12, 2012 6:09 PM

                ok? Thanks for letting us know.. i guess let us know if Firefall will be celebrating valentines day by changing their website pink, or if they'll put up some wacky april fools joke on april 1st. I am eager with anticipation.

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                January 12, 2012 6:13 PM

                LOL so if the riot guys do it, its cool but not firefall? they are like the rodney dangerfields of gaming

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                  January 12, 2012 6:20 PM

                  Yeah I don't know why people are going after them for this. I get that people are annoyed about the spamming before but this is actually worth reporting.

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                January 12, 2012 6:16 PM

                24 whole hours? Oh the humanity!

                So far, the people doing this are just inconveniencing their own users. No one that plays Firefall has any ability to change anything about SOPA. Reddit users are already aware of SOPA, but when it shuts off it's just going to increase Digg's traffic.

                I'm not sure there's anything that can be done to stop it. The politicians don't listen to anyone that doesn't belong to a huge corporation, and they're the only ones with the power. Fortunately like most of the things that gets the internet in an uproar it's completely overblown and won't effect anyone in the slightest.

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                  January 13, 2012 1:56 AM

                  right yea, lets do nothing and let governments/organization gradually take away what freedom we have. The thing is the people like you that don't act and grumble about others acting will moan about problems but accept any improvements the protestors get, funny that!

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                January 12, 2012 6:23 PM

                Dudes, they are shutting it down then as that is the day all us Shackers will get into the beta and they are giving us exclusive access for the day!

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                January 12, 2012 6:59 PM

                [Update:] When asked if Red 5 Studios would appear at future E3 events considering the company's position against the ESA, CEO Mark Kern said: "No, we will not attend E3 unless ESA reverses their stance."

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                  January 12, 2012 7:21 PM

                  Interesting. Has anyone else threatened to blow off E3?

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                  January 12, 2012 7:23 PM

                  Awesome. It's too bad that the ESA is shaping up to be as shitty as the MPAA and RIAA.

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                    January 13, 2012 7:47 AM

                    People with power over others. You know what they say about power....

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                  January 12, 2012 7:25 PM

                  there is an irony to the idea that a game company that suffers from zero piracy will pressure other game companies who suffer great piracy to reverse their position on SOPA

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                    January 13, 2012 12:50 AM

                    That's what I thought when I was reading Riot's response to SOPA.

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                      January 13, 2012 4:06 AM

                      But even if they don't suffer from piracy, if some people trolling posted some links to pirated content in their forums the company could be shut down if the SOPA bill goes on.

                      Well... even shacknews can be shut down in that situation.

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                  January 12, 2012 8:12 PM

                  noooow where getting somewhere

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                  January 12, 2012 11:05 PM

                  Didn't really think much of the whole beta shutdown, but this is a pretty strong stance.

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                  January 13, 2012 7:30 AM

                  THE REAL STORY: Firefall dev is running low on money

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                    January 14, 2012 6:54 AM

                    On the contrary, Firefall dev has a huge budget at his disposal !
                    If you don't know, please ask Red5.

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                January 12, 2012 7:36 PM

                [Update: 7:35pm PT] "I just had my staff cancel our e3 plans," Kern added in a follow-up email.

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                  January 12, 2012 7:47 PM

                  wait....what??

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                  January 12, 2012 8:15 PM

                  PREORDER E3 BOOTH CANCELED!!

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                  January 12, 2012 8:23 PM

                  So I'm guessing they did have plans to attend E3 prior to this, regardless of the ESA's stance. Woooo.

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                  January 12, 2012 11:04 PM

                  This is pretty huge, probably much bigger than most people realize.

                  Red 5 and Firefall aren't some no-name brands. They had literally the biggest showing of any single game at PAX Prime - one of the biggest gaming conventions in the world. They probably would have had a massive presence at E3 too.

                  While the ESA will probably find someone else to take their place, hopefully they wake up soon and stop supporting this disastrous, catastrophic bill.

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                    January 12, 2012 11:07 PM

                    their pax booth was massive. booth really doesn't describe it though. dahanese and crew were right there next to it, so she could probably describe it better.

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                      January 13, 2012 1:25 PM

                      they had the softest carpets. <3 <3 <3

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                        January 14, 2012 6:20 AM

                        Yes, it shows Red5 do care about the gamers/ visitors !!!

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                  January 13, 2012 4:39 AM

                  Didn't firefall have a gigantic booth last year?

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                  January 13, 2012 8:07 AM

                  hey if they are a shacknews/gamefly sponsor, can you just come out with it? It's better than us making snarky posts when we see updates that offer really no other value than to give them continual visibility.

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                    January 13, 2012 9:03 AM

                    Whenever an update is pushed on any post we strive to update Chatty. This is not a sponsorship thing. Firefall does not sponsor this website. I'm just trying to update people regarding the news.

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                January 12, 2012 8:15 PM

                In other news, Shacknews commenters are angry about something related to Firefall again. We tried to reach the public for a comment, but no one cared.

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                January 12, 2012 9:06 PM

                So first Xav shills for Firefall yet again, then he bumps the thread not once but twice. GG Shacknews. kidding kidding

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                January 12, 2012 9:36 PM

                My original e-mail to Shack was to ask if they would help fight SOPA by joining Reddit and Destructoid by blacking out their site on the 18th. So, what says Shacknews?

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                January 12, 2012 9:54 PM

                lets punish the people who dont support sopa by shutting down our service! brilliant!

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                  January 12, 2012 11:03 PM

                  That's the entire point of protests, don't you get it?

                  If SOPA is passed, then there's practically nothing stopping Red 5 from getting affected by it against their control.

                  SOPA would enable the government to do on a whim what Red 5 is willfully doing in protest instead. It's a great way to get gamers to care about SOPA when they'd otherwise be totally apathetic.

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                    January 13, 2012 12:40 AM

                    Have you read SOPA? What makes you think it would shut their game down? It talks about shutting down illegal streams of copyrighted material but why would streaming Firefall be illegal? Read it for yourself: http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?c112:H.R.3261:

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                      January 13, 2012 12:57 AM

                      It's not about their service necessarily being the one infringed upon by SOPA but the possibilities that exist within the bill for wrong to be done.

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                      January 13, 2012 9:13 AM

                      You are absolutely right! What were we worried about? After all the government NEVER abuses it power.

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                January 13, 2012 12:37 AM

                They're shutting down their site to protest the possibility of being shutdown. These guys are drama queens.

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                  January 13, 2012 12:54 AM

                  It would make much more sense to sit around idly and wait for something you oppose to come to fruition! Darn those (flappers/hippies/yuppies/punks/other group I wag my finger disapprovingly at), always meddling!

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                  January 13, 2012 7:14 AM

                  Comments like these only serve as an example of how whipped the average person is. What you just said is probably running through the minds of most people who read about this.

                  We are so boned.

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                    January 13, 2012 9:17 AM

                    Miss the point much? I think it's perfect. it would be just like SOPA. you go to log into a site & its just not there anymore.

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                January 13, 2012 12:55 AM

                The 24 hour stuff is weekend warrior crap. If Google and Wikipedia are serious they will 404 everything related to their services for a god damn month straight, day and night. Costly but then you can say goodbye to SOPA.

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                  January 13, 2012 4:59 AM

                  they'll never ever do this. (at least google won't)

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                January 13, 2012 1:56 AM

                Glad I live in England. This is an American bill right?

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                  January 13, 2012 2:01 AM

                  We can assume similar legislature will eventually reach europe / the uk if this passes and the big corporations get their way.

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                    January 13, 2012 2:25 AM

                    Meh, maybe, but I doubt it.

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                      January 13, 2012 4:36 AM

                      I'd guarantee it, your good ol' England eats out of corporation's hands as much as America.

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                        January 13, 2012 6:22 AM

                        So why don't we see news about Britain's similar bill in the news?

                        Oh, right... IT DOESN"T EXIST.

                        IP and copyright holders have the right (as they should) to take legal action against anyone infringing on their rights, that's enough. They don't have the right to shut down a website without investigation.

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                        January 13, 2012 6:54 AM

                        Except our political system is far more robust than yours. Not to mention that passing a bill that allows the arbitrary shutdown of any body it deems "rogue" is just wrong.

                        Would never get passed in Britain. Referendum would get shot down easy.

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                          January 13, 2012 6:56 AM

                          *pats handgund and knife collection*

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                          January 13, 2012 7:01 AM

                          *moons CCTV camera*

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                            January 13, 2012 9:23 AM

                            the CCTV camera stat came from some doofuses taking a single street in Norwich town center and extrapolating that number to every street in the UK. In actual per-capita terms I'd expect the US is ahead, just due to the crime figures.

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                          January 13, 2012 11:46 AM

                          *London riot*

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                      January 13, 2012 12:03 PM

                      most europe and the uk tend to follow suit with the US's IP laws. In fact I think there may be various treaties that oblige you to do so.

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                  January 13, 2012 4:40 AM

                  If websites get shut down we can't see them either

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                    January 13, 2012 9:21 AM

                    That's not the way that it works, they simply block the domain on American DNS servers. but you can bet that if that site is blocked in the US it wouldn't be long before it's gone completely. I'm just wondering if I can get around this by using a UK Proxy server

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                      January 13, 2012 9:23 AM

                      You wouldn't even need to use a proxy. Just use alternate DNS servers.

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                        January 13, 2012 9:32 AM

                        Then they will make that illegal too.

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                  January 13, 2012 7:37 AM

                  Since almost all important internet infrastructure is in the US, you country won't matter - You'll feel the kiss of SOPA wherever you are.

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                    January 13, 2012 11:39 AM

                    You have a warped view of things, my friend.

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                    January 13, 2012 11:46 AM

                    All important internet infrastructure.

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                  January 13, 2012 1:08 PM

                  Visa/Mastercard/Paypal are all US based so they would begin to block payments going to foreign places because of this bill.

                  You could have a completely legal in the UK business killed off by an incorrect report. Or even a correct report if whatever you are doing isnt kosher with the MAFIAA.

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                  January 14, 2012 2:17 PM

                  rofl this guy is like NOT MAI PROBALEM

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                January 13, 2012 6:56 AM

                In the next update, we find out that they canceled their game because of their opposition to SOPA.

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                January 13, 2012 9:14 AM

                i do wish google would shut down for 12 hours or something. that would get the entire world's attention.

                it'd probably also cost them a billion dollars or some shit.

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                January 13, 2012 10:30 AM

                Hey remember when the Firefall CEO came in to the chatty and said (implicitly, to be fair) that we'd get beta access? I do. :(

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                  January 13, 2012 10:47 AM

                  Are you seriously calling someone out for failing to deliver on vague statements they made about a game they were involved with?

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                    January 13, 2012 10:52 AM

                    Well it was part of that big apology thread he made. He certainly said he would do something to make it up to us but then nothing ever happened. This was months ago!

                    I mean if it was just a throwaway comment fine, but this was part of an effort to apologize to the community as a whole.

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                  January 13, 2012 11:14 AM

                  yeah, wtf happened with that?

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                  January 13, 2012 1:18 PM

                  There was never talk of giving anyone access to beta as an apology to shacknews I am not sure where you guys are getting this from. But I am assuming it is form this thread by grummz http://www.shacknews.com/chatty?id=26743489#item_26743489 in which he stated he is working on a better apology that is all.

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                January 13, 2012 11:18 AM

                BRING DOWN CHATTY!

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                January 13, 2012 11:47 AM

                I am shocked to see the many negative comments in response to this. Yes there was that whole "spamming" incident but that was good publicity for both firefall and shacknews (less for firefall due to all the complaining done by people). But that has nothing to do with this idea in general, it doesnt matter that firefall isnt the largest or most popular website. A protest will grow with more flamboyant displays of discontent, so if firefall can get a little more people (100+ at very least) interested in the protest it will the do worlds of good. This bill goes far beyond just general game piracy and gives the government access to shutting down websites because it has "copywritten material on it" which could be a post from a non company forum member or players. Most more socially aware websites are going down on the 18th in protest of SOPA some larger companies many even take their games down if the bill passes (see games like LoL)

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                January 14, 2012 5:57 AM

                I have great admiration for Red 5 's courage to take its stance in opposing SOPA !!! Its courage is also the theme of Firefall !!!
                We all know SOPA is "misguided legislation," and would have threatend the gaming industry with "unwarranted shutdown," if the bill passed.
                So, all Americans, haters/lovers of Firefall, let's pick up our courage to speak out against SOPA !!

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                  January 14, 2012 10:20 AM

                  I wonder what will come out first, Firefall or DiabloIII

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                    January 14, 2012 10:43 AM

                    Yeah, both Firefall and Diablo 3 are great games !! Can't wait....

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                      January 17, 2012 4:54 PM

                      this guy is made entirely of positively charged atomic particles, rythex, you can't get him down.