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Sign me up for the boycott!

This mistreatment of customers has to stop. The future of PC gaming and quality of games is at stake, all because a few publishers decided it was best for shareholders to throw the customer under the bus. Absolutely intolerable and they have to try harder.

No more DRM!
Maintain offline installers!
Post edited 4 hours ago by DesmondOC
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Gudadantza: And do not worry. If some day GOG has DRM FOR REAL I will be the first guy to be critical with it, with my wallet specifically. Silently.
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HappyPunkPotato: It's been pointed out a few times before that a lot of us are worried that's where GOG is heading on its current trajectory so we want to let GOG know how we feel about it now before it's too late. If you don't like us talking about it perhaps you could read a different thread?

Besides, even if it is subjective like you say, it's DRM to me which I find unacceptable from a shop who promised they were against it.
Worried about heading to is extreme paranoia. gog has an idea on why users do business with them.
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HappyPunkPotato: It's been pointed out a few times before that a lot of us are worried that's where GOG is heading on its current trajectory so we want to let GOG know how we feel about it now before it's too late. If you don't like us talking about it perhaps you could read a different thread?

Besides, even if it is subjective like you say, it's DRM to me which I find unacceptable from a shop who promised they were against it.
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Truth007: Worried about heading to is extreme paranoia. gog has an idea on why users do business with them.
And you are a doctor, so you can diagnose HappyPunkTomato remotely and see that he/she is ill?
Could you maybe tell me the next lottery numbers please.
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The_Puppet94: I got an honest question for you all:

What is DRM for you?
...
The question remains now... What is DRM and what is DRM for you? If we can clear that up we can come to an common ground if GOG is infringing their core principles or if we just might not agree on some gamedev practices nowadays.
Sure, that is perfectly reasonable and furthermore I think it's a good idea. I believe I have a good understanding of the de facto definition of DRM as used by the industry (but I'm open to corrections), so here's my take on it.

I'll start with a TL;DR and then go ahead and reply to individual points in your post.

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TL;DR:

Here's a bunch of things I'd argue that DRM is NOT:
- A license or legal agreement
- The fact that a game wants an online connection
- A game launcher
- A storefront and/or downloader client

And here's what I'd argue that it IS:

DRM is the management, i.e. policing, of digital rights, i.e. copyrights and other rights defined by EULA. Usually it refers to the technology used to implement/enforce restrictions.

It's the software that checks if your CDROM is an original copy from the manufacturer, or the page in the manual containing colored cells in combination with the code that asks you for a random one by row and column, or the software that goes online to report details about your individual copy in order to check that it's unique. That sort of thing.

EDIT: That said, Wikipedia seems to disagree with me, and lumps in license agreements with DRM as just another technology used to enforce digital rights.

---

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The_Puppet94: As far as I understand DRM stands for Digital Rights Managment
Correct, from my understanding.

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The_Puppet94: meaning you do not buy the actual product itself you buy an limited license to acess that content.
If you mean to give a definition of DRM here (I can't tell whether this is the case), then it seems to me you're entirely skipping the "management" part. The license itself (the EULA) covers the "digital rights" part only.

EDIT: I might be wrong about this part. See comment about Wikipedia above.

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The_Puppet94: So steam clearly states they do not sell you the product they kind of lend it to you: meaning if you loose access to your steam account it is gone - all of it."
...
If (very unlikly) steam goes out of business or decides to discontinue for any reason you loose your "limited right and lincense to install and use" has come to an end.
Based on the quoted license text alone, that's not necessarily true. A license to use a product can continue to apply even after a company has ceased to exist, and could contain provisions that prevent the company from revoking your rights.

It would all come down to the rest of the details outlined in the EULA.

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The_Puppet94: The DRM form on steam is to ways as far as I understand (and I am no expert). First: Steam conects your games to your personl account and you only can access and start your games via the steam client. Second steam always verifies your game files.
I don't know the details of how Steam has chosen to implement DRM. But yes, this is one way that DRM could be implemented.

I should point out though, that a common misconception seems to be that requiring an online connection or an online account is itself DRM; this is not true. The same goes for game store clients, launchers and settings applications.

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The_Puppet94: The Galaxy 2.0 client is first of all still optional. You don't need it to download any games from GOG at all. You can still download it all from their gog.com website (no problems).
Secondly and this is probably the most important thing, even if I downloaded it via the Galaxy client it is still not mandatory to launch the game with the galaxy client. I can go in the game files and launch the game from there. I do not need an internet access, I do not need an verification via the client. I could install and unistall the launcher every time I buy a new game and I would have the same game files on my PC as if I did it via the gog website. I can back the file up - no problems. So, the games are still DRM free even when I use the client.
None of the things you listed here seem to have anything to do with DRM, except possibly verification, depending on what is verified. For example, if the client was actually mandatory, that would still not constitute DRM.

The issue with Galaxy being pushed on consumers to an unreasonable extent is not a DRM issue.

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The_Puppet94: In comparison to steams eula gog's EULA states e.g. "In the very unlikely situation that we have to stop running GOG we'll do our best to give you advance notice, so that you can download and safely store all your DRM-free content."
This is somewhat related to DRM, in that if the GOG site goes away and there is DRM that depends on the GOG site being available, then it would likely stop working and you would lose access even with a local backup.

If GOG sells a game with DRM that requires a connection to a different site (that they don't control) then there is no way for them to prevent a DRM breakdown if that site is permanently taken down, save for releasing an update, patch or reconfiguration of the game that no longer requires the site. If GOG is gone, too, then you might be out of luck.

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The_Puppet94: So if DRM is the restriction of where and how you can launch your game and the restriction of personally backing up your game files - than GOG imo is DRM free. I can do that with every game I own.
Unless you literally mean "can" in the "I can do whatever I want unless I'm physically stopped or unable" kind of sense, that's not what DRM is. This restriction that you describe is a legal matter and is defined by the license you agreed to - the EULA.

EDIT: I might be wrong about this part. See comment about Wikipedia above.

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The_Puppet94: Is DRM the restriction that you can't get some cosmetic (non game essential items) without multiplayer mode for example but otherwise can play the whole game just fine (and back it up and launch it in flight mode) - just not with this fancy virtual sword or hat or whatever? I dont think thats the case.
Not inherently, but DRM can be used to apply such a restriction. There is no restriction on what digital rights can be managed with DRM.

This is how it breaks down legally, according to my understanding, in simplified terms:

- Anyone who authors a creative work automatically owns the copyright by default (if you write a book, for example, it's automatically yours). This is one of many types of "intellectual property" (aka. IP). What it means is the author gets to say whether any specific copying and/or performance of the work is OK or not (with some exceptions and quirks such as fair use, derived works, co-authorship etc).

- A copyright owner can sign away their copyrights, so employees can transfer their copyrights to the company they work for. So when products being sold are also creative works (such as games), usually it's the company that produced it that owns the copyright (and/or another company such as a publisher).

- Contract law generally overrides copyright law. As a copyright owner you can enter agreements with other parties that limit your own right to suddenly go "Hey, I don't want you to use my work in that way, stop immediately or I'll sue you!" - usually you'd want something in return, like a big wad of money for example. These kinds of agreements are ultimately what "licenses" are.

- There are some laws that tend to complicate things, for example you can own a specific copy of something that you bought (e.g. your copy of a book), which still doesn't inherently allow you to copy it, but allows you to do a lot of other things. The "licensed, not sold" or "lending" part is a technical detail that minimizes the amount of rights the copyright owner might give away by default. It's basically saying you as a buyer don't even own the copy, it's their copy and you just paid for a license to use it. What you are actually allowed to do with the copy would be dictated by the license.

- Even though copying without permission is generally illegal, that doesn't always actually stop people finding ways to do it, or even to try and find legal loopholes. Hence companies often opt to implement some sort of measure that physically (or at least digitally) prevents you from doing that. Circumventing these measures tends to be illegal (with certain exceptions). DRM refers to the implementation of those measures as well as the measures themselves.

EDIT: As commented above, Wikipedia also counts the EULA itself as DRM. This is not how I've come to understand the concept, but I'll concede that Wikipedia probably did a lot of fact-checking and my personal experience with it has been limited.
Post edited 2 hours ago by Hexchild
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Truth007: Worried about heading to is extreme paranoia. gog has an idea on why users do business with them.
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john_hatcher: And you are a doctor, so you can diagnose HappyPunkTomato remotely and see that he/she is ill?
Could you maybe tell me the next lottery numbers please.
In theory I could tell you the same thing you just told me...
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mrkgnao: That is incorrect. There are hundreds (if not thousands) of DRM-free games on Steam that you can play without the steam client and without an internet connection, once you have downloaded them. Here is a link to some lists: https://steam.fandom.com/wiki/List_of_DRM-free_games (click on the first [Expand]).
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The_Puppet94: Ok we can agree, there are some DRM free games on steam. However the majority is not DRM free on steam sadly.
Agreed. Although the actual number of DRM-free on both platforms is comparable (~2600 on Steam based only on the first list, ~3300 on GOG).

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mrkgnao: That is also incorrect. Assuming you want your games to be up to date, which most people do. There are, at this moment, tens of games on GOG that are up to date on Galaxy, but are not up to date in the offline installers, and some of these have been in this state for weeks, if not months. If you want all your games to be up to date, Galaxy is no longer optional. Here is a list: https://airtable.com/shrldLsErlUf3eHqS/tbltXjS8fxEGG11eD (some of the items on the list, especially towards the end, are false positive, but there are more than enough that are not).
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The_Puppet94: Thank you for the list! This wasn't really on my radar at all since I use the Galaxy launcher and I personally don't see a problem in it using it since it is imo not harming the DRM status of games per se in any case. As I mentioned before, I still can backup any game I downloaded from the launcher the same way as if I downloaded it from gog.com directly and that is what I personally value the most and makes a game DRM-free for me.
Further, games beeing up to date is something I care about for freshly launched games, since older or old games mostly don't get many updates anyway and are in general in a state where you can play them without any regular updates anyways.
We can agree that it would be good practice from gog, to update the gamefiles the same way outside the launcher as they do within galaxy. However my question is are there any real disadvantages besides personal preference, in using the galaxy launcher? It is for me just a convinient tool, but I am interested to see some other views on that.
For me, personally, galaxy has no feature that I want, so the only thing I would get from using it is my games taking just a bit longer to load, which is why I don't use it (or any other client).

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mrkgnao: I respect that you "dont think thats the case". Other people do think that's the case. And I don't see in your argument anything that makes your opinion more convincing than theirs. Nobody claims that No Man's Sky or Absolver or CP2077 are fully DRMed, but for some people even if 0.00001% of the game is DRMed that's enough, for that still insists on calling itself DRM-free. You may see it differently and that's ok, but it doesn't make their opinion less valid.
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The_Puppet94: My "argument" wasn't really an argument, just my own opinion. And my opinion is of course as valid and as invalid as any other opinion out there. That's why I even ask the question - what is DRM? Is there an objective definition when DRM starts? Is it DRM (or partly DRM) when I can play the game and can not get some fully irrelevant cosmetics or is it not? That is an interesting question to me.
I don't think the term DRM is particularly useful because most people do not agree what it is, which I why I try to avoid using it. I'll go one step further and state that I am not against DRM-free games, here or anywhere else. What I am against is selling games with single-player elements (however minor you or I might think they are) that require online registration or online connection without warning me clearly about it before purchase, because I don't want to buy these kind of games. I travel a lot (well, in normal years) and often to places with limited or no internet connectivity, so online requirements is something I want to avoid. I have stated before that I will stop my boycott if GOG shows signs of improvement --- in my case, clearly marking all the games that have any online single-player requirement (e.g. No Man's Sky, Absolver, CP2077) on the game page would be such a sign.

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The_Puppet94: Can this issue be solved with labeling "partly DRM" products like No Man's Sky or Absolver?
For me, yes. What I want to avoid is this current lottery where, buying a game, I don't know whether it has single player online walls.

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The_Puppet94: Would it be better to go a more strict approach and not allow these games at all here beause 0.00001% of bits are not fully DRM free (or dependend on multiplayer mode, I dont know in these specific cases, but can I keep the "Item" when I earned it in multiplayer and copy my gamefiles to an maschine without internet and still got this Item?)
For me, yes. What I want to avoid is this current lottery where, buying a game, I don't know whether it has single player online walls.

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The_Puppet94: Would it be still "DRM/partly DRM" if I could earn these items if I choosed to do so in multiplayer and could keep them "forever" without ever touching internet connection again with this game?
Irrelevant for me because I don't play online, so I wouldn't be able to get it anyhow, let alone keep it.
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The_Puppet94: I got an honest question for you all:

What is DRM for you?
I think this is a really good point: 'what is DRM'? How is it defined?

Imo, there are good definitions on Wikipedia:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital_rights_management

and defectivebydesign.org:

https://www.defectivebydesign.org/what_is_drm_digital_restrictions_management

As far as I know, GOG has not provided a clear definition of what they consider to be DRM (which leaves the door open to disagreement and confusion among users). I quite like the Defective By Design definition:

Digital Restrictions Management is the practice of imposing technological restrictions that control what users can do with digital media.
So, to me, it is quite simple: in the context of video games, DRM is anything that is built into the game with the aim of somehow restricting or controlling what a person can do with it, after they have purchased it (outside of the legitimate scope of the game itself).

It is the intention that is important, not whether it forms part of the license or is officially being flagged as 'DRM' by the developer, using their own preferred definition.

So, obviously an always-online user account verification requirement meets that description. But, so does a pre-order cosmetic bonus that is built into the game that requires online purchase verification to activate. There is a control built into the game with the intention of restricting users' access to part of the content. That is DRM.

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The_Puppet94: Is DRM the restriction that you can't get some cosmetic (non game essential items) without multiplayer mode for example but otherwise can play the whole game just fine (and back it up and launch it in flight mode) - just not with this fancy virtual sword or hat or whatever? I dont think thats the case.
I do consider this to be DRM, as I explained above. The only approach to DRM that makes sense to me is absolutely zero-tolerance. Anything else will inevitably undermine the argument.
Post edited 16 minutes ago by Time4Tea
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The_Puppet94: I got an honest question for you all:

What is DRM for you?
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Time4Tea: I think this is a really good point: 'what is DRM'? How is it defined?

Imo, there are good definitions on <span class="bold">Wikipedia</span> and at <span class="bold">defectivebydesign.org</span>.

As far as I know, GOG has not provided a clear definition of what they consider to be DRM. I quite like the Defective By Design definition:

Digital Restrictions Management is the practice of imposing technological restrictions that control what users can do with digital media.
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Time4Tea: So, to me, it is quite simple: in the context of video games, DRM is anything that is built into the game with the aim of somehow restricting or controlling what a person can do with it, after they have purchased it (outside of the legitimate scope of the game itself).

It is the intention that is important, not whether it forms part of the license or is officially being flagged as 'DRM' by the developer, using their own preferred definition.

So, obviously an always-online user account verification requirement meets that description. But, so does a pre-order cosmetic bonus that is built into the game that requires online purchase verification to activate. There is a control built into the game with the intention of restricting users' access to part of the content.

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The_Puppet94: Is DRM the restriction that you can't get some cosmetic (non game essential items) without multiplayer mode for example but otherwise can play the whole game just fine (and back it up and launch it in flight mode) - just not with this fancy virtual sword or hat or whatever? I dont think thats the case.
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Time4Tea: I do consider this to be DRM, as I explained above.
Completely agree with that. All of this is just imoral for consumers.
As stated before: DRM only hurts the consumers.

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D.Keys: (...) Piracy will keep going with or without DRM games. With DRM games, ONLY the consumers that actually buy the games suffer. (...)
While they try to "control" user activity with piracy in mind (after all this was the original idea of DRM's), they hurt consumers by:

- Slowing down performance;
- Sending and colecting data without user full awareness and knowledge of what they will really do with it;
- Experimenting new software that might mess up with user computer and so on.

Yes, yes, we all sign up the terms when we install software, but that's exactly why some people hate DRM's and just don't install games that use it.
Post edited 10 minutes ago by D.Keys
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HappyPunkPotato: It's been pointed out a few times before that a lot of us are worried that's where GOG is heading on its current trajectory so we want to let GOG know how we feel about it now before it's too late. If you don't like us talking about it perhaps you could read a different thread?

Besides, even if it is subjective like you say, it's DRM to me which I find unacceptable from a shop who promised they were against it.
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Truth007: Worried about heading to is extreme paranoia. gog has an idea on why users do business with them.
If your airliner is on a clear course towards a mountain, it doesn't make sense to do something to try to avoid it? When is the best time to start changing the course? Now, or 10 seconds before the impact?