02-20-2011 02:25 PM - edited 02-20-2011 02:26 PM
Speaking only for myself here, not RIM.
02-20-2011 02:32 PM
ahh. i was wondering what that wink was for in the other post with the Fighter2.swf haha.
but i undoubtedly agree, piracy of apps and simply loading up someone else's SWF is just wrong. so that begs the question, how do we know who we're helping though? i guess i should add a little bit of common sense to my tool belt
and on the note of telling them they are wasting time - i doubt they would care. i mean they are ripping off someone else. if they are willing to cheat to get a playbook, i strongly doubt they'd be taking anyone else's concerns into account. just sad.
i just hope that RIM does go into the source code some how and find apps that load someone else's work. dont think they'll catch them all, but at least some wont get away with it.
02-20-2011 02:44 PM
Nope, can't catch them all and it's no reason for the forum to not offer help ... but some posts do have a distinct smell. Or even a dead giveaway, like, say the name of a SWF file that you can google.
I'd be surprised if the app review team hasn't at least once fired up an app and said "hey this looks exactly like some other app submission that came through here a couple days ago".
Probably doesn't cost the trolls much to roll the dice with cheating, so it's gonna happen.
One good thing about the identity verification for vendors is if they kick you for being a pirate, you're probably kicked for good.
Would be great to see a high profile post, say on the dev blog, and other tech blogs where the info would get circulated around to the bottom feeders in the "scene", with a headline like "RIM cancels vendor accounts due to submission of pirated work". Something the bottom feeders could take back to their nests and share with their compadres.
02-20-2011 03:06 PM
so that begs the question, how do we know who we're helping though?
Yep it is a judgement call but perhaps a good rule of thumb would be to not spoon feed complete code solutions to first time posters when their post has a funny smell. Maybe instead, ask them to clarify their problem, or suggest the solution in broader terms. That should burn off the more scurrilous ones. Legit folks who are willing to roll up their sleeves will come back and demonstrate that they've actually lifted a finger to learn something.
02-20-2011 03:52 PM
If there is a case where someone is taking someone else work and trying to re-package it under their own name, it seems kind of stupid on their part. They have to verify with BB their identity in a few different ways. If BB identifies them infringing a copyright, all they have to do is notify the author of the work and they would be able to legally go after that person very easily. Lawyers love to go after cases like this.
With 3 weeks to build, test, sign and deliver an app, I cant imagine that anything at this point would do too much unless the code already existed in some ActionScript form.
02-21-2011 10:48 PM
I wonder how much time RIM spends probing and discussing these issues.. wonder if they have tools to do the work. I know there are tools out there such as http://www.blackducksoftware.com/protex that can scan and report matches against other open source software. Hope they have invested in these tools to make their life easier.
02-22-2011 01:27 AM
Missed the thread that you're referencing but that's low.
Reminds of the recent story of some Flash game that was being converted into an iPhone app and they discovered in middle that somebody had already put it up on the app store! Same name, same assets etc.
02-22-2011 11:05 AM
02-22-2011 11:16 AM
"Packaging" another site is certainly violating copyright, so that one is real simple. Do it, you'll get sued, you'll lose.
Providing access to another site is a different story, but if all your app does is grab content from that site and deliver it to the user, then you may be violating whatever Terms and Conditions (effectively a license agreement) that site provides. Again, you'll likely get sued, and lose.
Including third-party source code is just fine, provided the license agreement for it allows you to. You absolutely must read and understand the details of any such license agreements, or you expose yourself to lawsuits and/or things like getting banned from App World. You can always find such licenses easily, so for example googling "jquery license agreement" shows you that it can be used under either the GPL (v2) or MIT licenses. The MIT one is a so-called "permissive" license which quite clearly lets you use it for just about any purpose without significant restriction. You can always read background on each license at, for example, Wikipedia or the Open Source Initiative site.
It's not actually RIM's job to "police" this, at least not directly. They have some obligation merely by providing access to the apps, and of course for business reasons they benefit by being fairly "clean" etc, but it's between you and the people whose work you are
stealing using whether you'll get in trouble, and it's the courts that would ultimately decide (possibly, for example, by granting someone an injunction against you, and directing RIM to enforce it by, say, removing your app and possibly withholding any income you've made from it, etc).