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Blizzard to sue MBCGame

farnham

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Nov 18, 2006
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“We are preparring the legal documents right now. We will sue MBCGame”

Blizzard finally decided to use the last card in the esports dispute. They announced that they will now take legal measures.

Paul Sams the COO of Blizzard announced to the Korean Press at Blizzcon that they will begin to take legal measures in their esports dispute.

He said "It is the last thing we can do at this point. Its our last option. We will sue MBCgame in a few days and Ongamenet could get sued as well. We are preparring for the dispute and will request preliminary injunction to stop broadcasting."

Ahn Jung Bin from This is game

Source : http://www.thisisgame.com/board/view.php?id=517120&category=103&subcategory=

The latter is the Interview
Paul Sams: Welcome to Blizzcon. We are greatful for your support. I will tell you about the rumors surrounding esports today. I will set the record straight now. E sports is a very important part for us that can connect blizzard with the whole world. It is our goal to bring the competitive game to fruition worldwide. We will work so that esports can grow even outside of korea.
It is also important to protect the Intellectual Property of Blizzard. We tried to make contracts with several e sports associations but failed. The last few month we deliberated about this and came to the conclusion that legal action is the only way.


What do you mean by Intellectual Property ?


Outside of the broadcasting we usually did not want to charge for tournaments. The goal was to let people enjoy the game and not making money of it. But the Broadcasting studios are not accepting the intellectual property over blizzard games. We tried to improve the relationship but they always wanted more and made the negotiations difficult. When we thought that there was a conclusion it just got delayed and delayed again and again.

In conclusion we can now only take legal action.

Does this mean no more pro leagues ?

Yes! This is our last option. We did not want this. It is against our own rules and its the last thing we can do. We only wanted to do this if we thought we were 100% right and it is our last option as i said. There is still a possibility that tournaments will be held. We want to reach an agreement. We will sue MBCgame and Ongamenet is a possibility to. but we want an agreement and we hope that it will not come to this.
The Broadcasting studios are not showing any cooperation right now though.



So how will the legal action take place ?

The last conference with the broadcasting studios was at the 20th. KesPA, the broadcasting studios and gretech (GOM) took part at that conference. We did not reach a conclusion. We had a mediator but it did not bring any results. We are preparing the documents now so it is difficult to say what the further plans are. What i can say is that MBC game will be sued very soon and we have already sent a message to ongamenet to stop the current proleague. if they dont follow we will sue them too.



Did you send a message to MBC game too ?

Yes we did give them a ultimatum a few weeks ago but they did not follow. So we will sue them. The same thing can happen to ongamenet.

Shit just got real
 

farnham

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Nov 18, 2006
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Domino Theory said:
They announce that they're suing other companies during a convention?

laughoutloudwat
this is a big thing in sk and the esports world

kespa and ongamenet&mbcgame had the biggest esports league in the world but they did not accept starcraft as the intellectual property of blizzard but rather saw a "public property" in it and refused to pay blizzard. this dispute is pretty old now and is the reason why gomtv got the right to the starcraft 2 leagues.
 

Zenith

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Feb 17, 2006
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for those of us not into esports and SC2 tournies explain this to us. The OP makes it sounds like Blizzard got pissy over not being in complete control of every aspect (more Battle.net for everyone!) and is suing companies who are trying to set up tournaments for the hardcore fans.
 

farnham

Banned
Nov 18, 2006
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Zenith said:
for those of us not into esports and SC2 tournies explain this to us. The OP makes it sounds like Blizzard got pissy over not being in complete control of every aspect (more Battle.net for everyone!) and is suing companies who are trying to set up tournaments for the hardcore fans.
Okay

Ongamenet, MBC game started casting starcraft tournaments -> that shit was successful and made money so the people involved in it made a association (kespa) and created an industry -> as kespa begins to charge people that want to watch the public games blizzard comes in and forbids it saying that they have the IP -> kespa denies and says that they are in charge as starcraft is "public property" -> starcraft 2 comes out and blizzard gives the broadcasting rights for sc and sc2 to gretech(gomtv) due to frustration with kespa -> ongamenet and mbcgame (kespa associates) broadcast starcraft tournaments anyways.
 

etiolate

Banned
Jun 8, 2004
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farnham said:
this is a big thing in sk and the esports world

kespa and ongamenet&mbcgame had the biggest esports league in the world but they did not accept starcraft as the intellectual property of blizzard but rather saw a "public property" in it and refused to pay blizzard. this dispute is pretty old now and is the reason why gomtv got the right to the starcraft 2 leagues.
edit: ah nm

I never seen something like this. Would Ford sue for people broadcasting Mustang races and charging for it?
 

farnham

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Nov 18, 2006
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El Sloth said:
So this only affects the original Starcraft tournaments then, correct?
since kespa only seems to care about starcraft 1, yes (gretech has rights for sc1 and 2 as far as i know kespa doesnt care though)

etiolate said:
So Blizzard is suing because MBC didn't give them money to run a competition involving a Blizzard game that they purchased?
yes
Fio said:
Broadcasting rights of a videogame? Is this the point of this dispute?
yes
 

Snow

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Oct 13, 2005
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farnham said:
Okay

Ongamenet, MBC game started casting starcraft tournaments -> that shit was successful and made money so the people involved in it made a association (kespa) and created an industry -> as kespa begins to charge people that want to watch the public games blizzard comes in and forbids it saying that they have the IP -> kespa denies and says that they are in charge as starcraft is "public property" -> starcraft 2 comes out and blizzard gives the broadcasting rights for sc and sc2 to gretech(gomtv) due to frustration with kespa -> ongamenet and mbcgame (kespa associates) broadcast starcraft tournaments anyways.
Wasn't there also the issue that Blizzard tried to run their own tournament in Korea, and Kespa effectively shut them down by forbidding people playing in Blizzard's tournament if they wanted to play in the Kespa ones? That must've pissed off Blizzard at least a little.
 

farnham

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Nov 18, 2006
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Snow said:
Wasn't there also the issue that Blizzard tried to run their own tournament in Korea, and Kespa effectively shut them down by forbidding people playing in Blizzard's tournament if they wanted to play in the Kespa ones. That must've pissed off Blizzard at least a little.
yes that was one of the few things kespa did

they also paid the media to make sc2 and the gsl look very bad (starcraft 2 isnt selling at all gsl failed etc.). didnt work out that well though.
 

Moussi

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Dec 6, 2008
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it's about tiiiime.....
Blizzard has every right to do this. Kespa was making some dough and blizzard wanted in on it because they're making dough using their product. I never got the impression blizzard wanted to control everything they just wanted some acknowledgment and get some money.
 

mcrae

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Dec 5, 2008
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Fio said:
Broadcasting rights of a videogame? Is this the point of this dispute?
im not sure if you're trying to belittle this or not, but the fact is that money is at stake
 

farnham

Banned
Nov 18, 2006
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Moussi said:
it's about tiiiime.....
Blizzard has every right to do this. Kespa was making some dough and blizzard wanted in on it because they're making dough using their product. I never got the impression blizzard wanted to control everything they just wanted some acknowledgment and get some money.
gretech is a better partner anyways

GSL kills any kespa tournament easily
 

Tacitus_

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Dec 7, 2008
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KESPA were being assholes, serves them right. Forbidding 'their' players to play in other tournaments since they (KESPA) weren't getting any(enough) money from it? Totally on the side of Blizzard on this one.
 

Nemo

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Sep 10, 2007
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Domino Theory said:
They announce that they're suing other companies during a convention?

laughoutloudwat
Now that's the proper way

E3 conferences should be about this
 

beast786

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Oct 12, 2007
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Moussi said:
it's about tiiiime.....
Blizzard has every right to do this. Kespa was making some dough and blizzard wanted in on it because they're making dough using their product. I never got the impression blizzard wanted to control everything they just wanted some acknowledgment and get some money.
How about they got paid when they bought the game. Just saying.
 

Jamesfrom818

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Mar 1, 2007
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818
farnham said:
the current sponsor of the proleague kespa is doing is a bank. you know that there is money in the event when the sponsor is a bank.
Yeah, I know. I just think its funny that they think Starcraft is public property.
 

farnham

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Nov 18, 2006
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beast786 said:
How about they got paid when they bought the game. Just saying.
thats not how intellectual property works

Jamesfrom818 said:
Yeah, I know. I just think its funny that they think Starcraft is public property.
it is indeed crazy what those guys at kespa think

they actually said that starcraft in korea is not different then soccer so therefore they dont have to pay anyone.
 

TOAO_Cyrus

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Depending on the copyright laws of Korea Kespa might be correct. I dont know any of the details but even in the US its possible to lose copywright on a technicality. The original Night of the Living Dead movie is in public domain because the publisher forgot to put a copyright notice on the original prints. I guess we will find out soon enough.
 

TOAO_Cyrus

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beast786 said:
How about they got paid when they bought the game. Just saying.
By that logic I have the right to produce a harry potter movie because I bought one of the books.
 

beast786

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farnham said:
thats not how intellectual property works


it is indeed crazy what those guys at kespa think

they actually said that starcraft in korea is not different then soccer so therefore they dont have to pay anyone.

I have no clue about these laws.

If someone is doing a fashion show on TV. Do they have to pay the companies for putting it on air? I am not being sarcastic, I am wondering how it works.
 

farnham

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Nov 18, 2006
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TOAO_Cyrus said:
Depending on the copyright laws of Korea Kespa might be correct. I dont know any of the details but even in the US its possible to lose copywright on a technicality. The original Night of the Living Dead movie is in public domain because the publisher forgot to put a copyright notice on the original prints. I guess we will find out soon enough.
so you are saying blizzard forgot to put in a copyright notice on starcraft :lol :lol

beast786 said:
I have no clue about these laws.

If someone is doing a fashion show on TV. Do they have to pay the companies for putting it on air? I am not being sarcastic, I am wondering how it works.
you basically have the control over any flow of money generated from a creation
 

beast786

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TOAO_Cyrus said:
By that logic I have the right to produce a harry potter movie because I bought one of the books.
What does the book has to do with producing a movie?

But, charging people to play Harry potter movie that you bougtht. Is that legal? Again, I do not know about these laws.
 

Snow

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beast786 said:
How about they got paid when they bought the game. Just saying.
Kespa is asserting sole broadcast rights since a couple of years though, which at the very least is kinda weird. And apparently they tried to do the same thing with GOM TV this year as they did the with the earlier Blizzard backed tournaments in Korea, and forbade teams and players playing in their tournaments from playing in the Blizzard one. Seems kinda anti-competitive to me.

Their argument has always been that Blizzard is the provider of the ball in a football match, and that e.g. Addidas wouldn't go up to FIFA and ask for a say in broadcast rights. While I'm not an IP lawyer, that kinda seems like a flawed analogy to me.
 

HolyCheck

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beast786 said:
How about they got paid when they bought the game. Just saying.
You realize your radio station pays the band every single time they play their song right?
 

Atrophis

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Kespa decided that if anyone wanted to broadcast SC games in Korea they had a buy a license from them. You cant exclusively license something you dont own.

When you start pulling shit like that you are gonna piss Blizz off.
 

TOAO_Cyrus

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farnham said:
so you are saying blizzard forgot to put in a copyright notice on starcraft :lol :lol
No I am just saying they may have lost the rights due to some technicality in South Korean law. Not very likely though, Kespa is probably just bluffing trying to scare Blizzard from going to court and leave the status quo.
 

farnham

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Nov 18, 2006
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Atrophis said:
Kespa decided that if anyone wanted to broadcast SC games in Korea they had a buy a license from them. You cant exclusively license something you dont own.

When you start pulling shit like that you are gonna piss Blizz off.
yeah people need to understand this

its like this

blizzard made a game
kespa came in and sold licenses for that game without even buying any rights from blizzard
and they have done it for AGES.

it is actually generous of blizzard to do this after all this years.
TOAO_Cyrus said:
No I am just saying they may have lost the rights due to some technicality in South Korean law. Not very likely though, Kespa is probably just bluffing trying to scare Blizzard from going to court and leave the status quo.
if south korean judges dare to deny blizzards IPs i think that would have a lot of consequences on south koreas economy as companies will pull out fearing that they will loose their ips in that country.
 

TOAO_Cyrus

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beast786 said:
What does the book has to do with producing a movie?

But, charging people to play Harry potter movie that you bougtht. Is that legal? Again, I do not know about these laws.
These broadcast companies are making advertising money off of broadcasting starcraft games. It is analogous to releasing a movie or broadcasting a show based on a book or other media, you have to get IP rights from the original creator.
 

flyinpiranha

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TOAO_Cyrus said:
By that logic I have the right to produce a harry potter movie because I bought one of the books.
Actually, it would be like buying the movie and selling tickets to come watch it and making tons of money off of it. (EDIT: like was said above, and yes, it is illegal to do that)

I see Blizzards side and I agree with them. It's not just a few people putting together a local competition, they are profiting from using their product.
 

Ronok

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TOAO_Cyrus said:
By that logic I have the right to produce a harry potter movie because I bought one of the books.
It's more like having the right to broadcast a reading of the book, because you purchased it..... Honestly I have no idea if this is legal or not though. =P


Really I think KeSPA should have played nice from the start. They could have easily come to an agreement with Blizzard at the start of all this. In the end I can only see this all damaging esports in Korea.
 

TOAO_Cyrus

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Ronok said:
It's more like having the right to broadcast a reading of the book, because you purchased it..... Honestly I have no idea if this is legal or not though. =P


Really I think KeSPA should have played nice from the start. They could have easily come to an agreement with Blizzard at the start of all this. In the end I can only see this all damaging esports in Korea.
Yes that would be illeagle. Publishers make money off of selling audio books.
 

hamchan

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Jan 4, 2009
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Ronok said:
It's more like having the right to broadcast a reading of the book, because you purchased it..... Honestly I have no idea if this is legal or not though. =P

Really I think KeSPA should have played nice from the start. They could have easily come to an agreement with Blizzard at the start of all this. In the end I can only see this all damaging esports in Korea.
They really should have played nice. It makes no sense to fight with the company who makes the damn game you're profiting off so much :lol