Thank you, everyone
I would like to start this by saying that as of 9pm eastern the #PS4NoDRM campaign, as has been organized from this forum, is coming to a close. This movement was never just about this thread or following 'a leader' so if any of you want to continue tweeting every minute between now and the end of time - more power to you. I do hope that the passion keeps going but I had to make a tactical decision to shut down this part of it until E3. I'll explain why in a bit.
But first I want to thank NeoGAF. This board is absolutely incredible. Like everyone else, I became a member here after a long time of lurking (and a longer time of waiting for approval ) and have certainly had my share of frustrations over the years (hi vita-hating-gaf!) but I've also seen this board come together to do absolutely amazing things. There's no website that gets news faster than this forum. There is no better spot for inside information, for talking directly with devs and for getting a feel for how the hardcore feel about gaming issues.
When I made this thread it was based off of a leak that I heard that the flack that Microsoft was getting for their Used Game DRM was making Sony lean towards dropping theirs, which was supposedly something that hadn't decided on yet anyway. This was further backed up by another respected leaker, OMGWTFBBQ, saying that the reason that EA was on stage and giving exclusives to EA and not at Sony's event was because MS agreed to do DRM and Sony wouldn't commit. So I decided to make this thread with the idea that with twitter we could talk to Sony execs personally and give them a nudge in the direction it sounds like they were headed anyway.
There have been a large amount of criticisms about the movement and what has exploded since then and I actually agree with some of them. "A hashtag has never changed anything!" I agree, it's a pretty lazy way to get your message out there. But I do want to clarify that the point of this movement wasn't the hashtag... the hashtag was for exactly what hashtags are designed for... a search tool so we could look up and keep track of tweets on the subject. The point of this movement wasn't about having a giant number of tweets (though we did) or just spamming the hashtag (though some did...). The point was to talk to the people making decisions in a polite way and explain why we didn't want DRM put on physical media. It was about making connections... not spamming something for numbers.
What it did accomplish, that we know for certain, is grabbing the attention of the media about the issue. Us Gaffers sometimes unfairly feel like the media is out of touch, and this is an issue where it makes sense to be out of touch... the games media typically doesn't have to buy games and nor do they have to sell games to buy new games - so this isn't an issue that affects them in any meaningful way. This story has been reported on over 225 times in over 20 languages in a bit over a week. That is very powerful stuff. We talked to Sony (and later Microsoft and third party publishers) directly and then the media grabbed a bullhorn and made sure they were listening. A special shoutout to Jason Schreier, a gaffer and writer for Kotaku for the coverage he gave. We can't control what MS and Sony eventually decide, but I don't know what more we could do than that. I am incredibly proud of the people here who stepped up.
Baller, PhD came out of nowhere and created the websites www.ps4nodrm.com and www.xboxonenodrm.com which was huge. GoFreak has written much of our philosophical policies and helped with easier ways for people new to twitter to get things out there. ThoughtsofSpeaking made an incredible tumblr page which was the very essence of this movement - a place for people to tell their own stories/reasons as to why used games/sharing games with friends and family/etc are important to them. M0dus came in with amazing image work and help herding cats in the thread. About 20 people stepped up and started scouring the web for articles about what was going on. One guy, on twitter, told me he put up fliers around his town about this. I didn't ask any of these people to do any of these things... they did it because this was an issue that they felt passionately about. They did it because they felt like it was the right thing to do.
This is a story about how NeoGAF, despite being quite cynical and having a mean streak, is actually a force for good in this industry. People actually care. Many people pointed out, perhaps correctly, that we were 'wasting our time.' Maybe. But we give a shit and we wanted to atleast try.
So after a strong start and today, with phase 2, a strong finish - I feel like it's time to sit back and wait for E3. The point was to talk to these companies directly: we did that. The point was to expand awareness of the issue: we did that with the help of the media. The point today was just one last "hey guys we're still here and we still know what we want!": we did that.
We succeeded. We accomplished every single goal that we set out to do. I feel like it's time to hang up the gloves and wait to see if it makes a difference.
On monday Sony and Microsoft (hopefully? No Q+A? REALLY?!?) will either deliver good news or bad news. In the 15 or so interviews I've done over the last week the one question each of them has asked is "What are you going to do if they go through with the DRM?" My answer is still that I don't know. If it looks like a brick wall that we can't move, maybe we give up. If there are things that we can affect maybe we go on. Like, for instance, if Sony does do a "it's up to the publisher" type of thing I could see a group of us going on and making a website designed to promote publishers and developers that don't use DRM and shine our spotlight on those that do. I'm not sure. This has been an amazing experience and I would be lying if I didn't say that I haven't enjoyed it on a personal level... I mean I did an interview with a mexican newspaper. A MEXICAN NEWSPAPER!?!? And I've also learned that contrary to everything I've ever thought about myself, I'm actually pretty good at PR. I think i may know what I want to do when I grow up. This shit has been bananas. But we also all have fulltime jobs and would like nothing more than for MS and Sony to say "We heard you guys, no DRM on physical media!" and have that end this entire thing. Put us out of business, please!
So, again, thank you NeoGAF. Thank you people who were in that thread helping every step of the way. Thank you to the lurkers who joined in and spread it to other sites like Reddit and Facebook and other major videogame boards. Thank you, thank you, thank you. Maybe we just saved consumer rights... maybe we didn't do a damn thing. Either way I'm sitting here extremely proud of this community and I'm proud of how this all was conducted. You guys are amazing.
-pete 'famousmortimer' dodd
Phase Two Starts on Wednesday, June 5th at 8AM eastern (1pm GMT). Spread the word!!! It will be running all day long!
We have successfully made it very, very clear to Sony how we feel. It's our view that it would be best to back off tweeting directly at Sony employees for a bit but we do implore people to keep the hashtag #PS4NoDRM going. We know that this movement is bigger than just this forum and that people will continue to go on however they chose and that's totally cool. We are not trying to put the kabosh on people expressing themselves, but we did want to clarify our own plan.
After several days with just the hashtag simmering we will make one last push on Wednesday, June 5th and try to keep the momentum up on it into that weekend when everyone starts traveling to LA for E3. We will also try to build up a media presence by letting them know that this is coming so maybe we can get some press and the twitter thing happening at once again.
As for third parties and Microsoft, keep tweeting them. Microsoft has said they are listening. The third parties will ignore us but we'll make sure that's impossible.
Also make sure you check out the last few pages of the thread, we may at any time during this lull be doing some more targeted or fun things. Never rude! Always polite. But, things like tweeting a link to people at Sony with the list of the 150+ links of stories about the movement may be happening, so go have a look.
A good writeup about the movement so far and what Phase 2 is hoping to accomplish.
The gist of it is that Sony is listening to the backlash that Microsoft is getting and they are basing decisions off of this. I would assume MS is also, but I don't know that for sure. But I can say, for sure, that the past week's PR nightmare for MS has not been lost on Sony and they, in fact, do have a used game 'solution' working and have been going back and forth for months on whether to use it. This past week is pushing them strongly into "Yeah, let's not use that."
Do you want to give them an extra push? It can't hurt. I've been told by lower level people in the company that tweeting to yosp specifically is quite effective as he likes to gauge what people are thinking. Will a couple hundred posts from neogaf change the entire industry? No. Can it help give a little more momentum to something sony seems to be leaning towards already? I would think so.
If any lurkers or members of the press or Sony's goons hired to break my kneecaps want to contact me: @ForYourPeteDodd or PM me here.
My biggest piece of advice is be respectful. They aren't likely to finish a tweet in all caps threatening them.
Shuhei Yoshida (president of worldwide studios) @yosp (easily the highest level person on twitter and quite accessible)
John Koller (head of hardware marketing) @jpkoller (dude has like 150 followers - heh)
Guy Longworth (senior vice president PlayStation Brand Marketing) @luckylongworth
Scott Rohde (PlayStation Software Product Development Head for Sony Worldwide Studios America) @rohdescott
Adam Boyes (Publisher and developer relations at Sony) @amboyes
Shahid Kamal Ahmad (third party relations, europe) @shahidkamal
Nick Accordino (SCEA ISD A. Producer) @nikoro
Phil Rosenberg (SCEA - reports directly to Tretton, thanks GoFreak) @philrosenberg
#PS4NoDRM #PS4USEDGAMES are the hashtags being used.
Also couldn't hurt to let the ex-journos that work there like @nsuttner and @shanewatch and @morganharo and @sidshuman know what you are thinking. But again, remember, respectful. I would assume any of these guys are used to getting flamed and just instantly disregard tweets that seem pissed off.
Use the hashtags #XboxOneUSEDGAMES #XboxOneNoDRM as well
Phil Spencer, the head of Microsoft Studios
Aaron Greenberg, chief of staff for IEB
Phil Harrison, man in charge of MS Europe
Mike Ybarra, manager of games developed by external studios published by MS
Yusuf Mehdi, marketing for Xbox
Major Nelson, just because
Remember, use #XboxOneUSEDGAMES #XboxOneNoDRM
and share your thoughts!
Here's one of Activisions Board of Directors
Co-founder of Ubi Soft
PATRICK SÖDERLUND - EA Vice President: @PatrickSderlund
Social media teams... probably a waste of time.
https://twitter.com/EA_ActionMan // EA UK Marketing
https://twitter.com/OneOfSwords // Activision Community manager
I would caution not to expect too much. They aren't going to reply to a tweet with their used game philosophy. Just them taking notice publically of the movement is all we can reasonably hope for at this juncture.
Scott Rohde ‏@RohdeScott
I love passionate #PlayStation Fans!!
Shahid: I know my colleagues might not appreciate me saying this, but I’ve rather enjoyed being Twitter bombed by passionate fans recently.
He's in developer relations not PR but Adam Boyes is paying attention too
Boynes: @VinayakNeliath I read the GAF daily
He's a producer with SCEA ISD
Well over 150 write ups in the media about this movement!
Jim Sterling has been an amazing supporter of this cause.
Who else to contact in the mainstream media (PLEASE DO NOT SPAM):
New York Times
Wall Street Journal
GAF's Gofreak very expertly lays down exactly why we care and deflates some of the easy PR answers that may be coming our way.
Know your twitter-fu by GORI
Hey guys, nice one. I've done a few ad campaigns focused on twitter and trending topics, and remember a few things: (that probably all of you know already)
It shouldn't be about letting Sony know - trust me, they know already - it should be about letting Sony know that everyone is talking about it. Don't just focus on the high ranking Sony execs. Focus on everyone that is into gaming. If we create a true trending topic here, we have won.
Always try to rewrite the tweets, don't just copy or retweet what other people say, that way they're ranked better by Twitters algorithms. To create a trending topic - it's all about conversation, rather than mentions. Also try to involve your followers on Twitter, or reply to what other people you are following are saying. Get in there.
Don't _only_ write tweets starting with an @ sign - as these will only be seen by your followers who also follow the people you are @'ing. But if you want to write to a lot of people, go ahead, it will make your followers feel less spammed by the whole issue. But if you do want to let your friends know who you're sending an @ message to - add a . before the @. This way everyone will see it.
People who contributed amazing info, art or anything to this thread:
(if you contributed and I didn't list you please PM so I can fix it. Seriously. Don't feel dumb. I want to give credit where credit is due)
Link to what the OP used to look like before we cleaned it up.
SunhiLegend is still THE legend.