Legalities of chipping consoles

pootas

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I don't want to get onto ethical or moral grounds before anyone starts ranting at me! All I was wondering is this:

Is it actually legal to modify a games console to play backups?

The reason I ask is that there are several companies doing it online and they seem to have been going for a while. Is it actually illegal or are they using some kind of loophole?
 

Purity

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I don't want to get onto ethical or moral grounds before anyone starts ranting at me! All I was wondering is this:

Is it actually legal to modify a games console to play backups?

The reason I ask is that there are several companies doing it online and they seem to have been going for a while. Is it actually illegal or are they using some kind of loophole?

In my opinion I believe it is illegal in the UK to modify a console full stop, whatever purpose it is used for.

In other countries it is legal to modify the console if it is being used for legitimate reasons -i.e Linux other 3rd party software
 

pootas

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Yes I can see what you mean, but how do these companies get away with it...Some of them have been going for several years...
 

witchy

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Illegal almost everywhere in the world but OK in Austrailia.

The way i see it is if I purchase a console then it's mine to do with what I please.
 

pootas

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Yeh just read a news article stating it is illegal to bypass the copy protection of games systems...I'm just baffled how these companies get away with it then!
 

witchy

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Yes I can see what you mean, but how do these companies get away with it...Some of them have been going for several years...

Slowly one at the time the big players in the modding world are being prosecuted, MrModchip, Maxking etc as examples.
 

Purity

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In some cases I think the law is wrong. For example, I have modified three xboxes for legitimate purposes - Xbox Media Centre. I don't use the consoles for backup games or anything that you would class as illegal.
 

madnlooney

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i think they just make it illigal so theres not little loopholes or anything. i agree if someone wants to do it so they can use it as say a media centre but i think the companies see it as you then have the potential to bypass the copyright if you wanted with that console
 

mxwizard

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I know that chipping is definately illegal with the S*ny consoles and if I remember the legal arguments with the big case in Australia correctly I think that you don't actually own your playstations :eek: lol ...I think despite the fact that you purchased the console with your hard earned S*ny sneaked into the paperwork somewhere that they still remain the owners of the hardware? I might be wrong but I'm sure I remember reading that at the time and when I checked the paperwork that came with the Ps2...sure enough I found the paragraph that was being highlighted in the legal arguments :err:
 

witchy

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lol, so we're using their hardware under licence and they have the right to reclaim their hardware at any time even though we bought it!?
 

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A few years ago, when the pink PS2 was released I bought one and sent to a company to be chipped. I didn't hear anything from them for some time and so chased them up. It transpired that the Office of Fair Trading had seized mine and a few other consoles.

The reason they gave was that the design of the motherboard was patented and so by modifying the console itself, Sony's copyright was being breached.

Fortunately, the company sent me a pre-mod pink ps2 so I was unaffected. They did, however tell me that this has happened to them before and they do get the consoles that are seized back but it takes 6 months.
 

Enticy

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Just another point to make, this company I dealt with is registered at companies house which means they have to submit returns etc. to companies house under the Company Acts so they obviously run a legit company from a financial point of view.
 

mxwizard

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I think there is also a further point to make in this debate... well atleast as far as the xbox 360 hack goes... Is it illegal to upgrade a dvd-rom drives firmware? I don't think it is? Lets be fair about... how many of us have flashed various pc drives in an effort to keep the firmware up to date for reasons like better media support etc. Is it illegal? Don't think so... O.k there are chips available for the xbox 360 but I bet over 95% of the modded xbox 360's out there are purely reliant on the drive firmware upgrade to run their backups. I don't actually think any laws are being broken here to be honest. Ok you could probably argue that the security of the drive itself is being bypassed but its a very weak argument in my opinion. Do M$ prosecute anyone they find to have a modified console? nope.. they merely ban them from using the xbox live service and refuse any return under warranty for that console. These guys you sometimes read of that get busted are usually found to be physically chipping the console and are also usually caught with a great number of pirated softwares... I've never heard or read of anyone being charged of any offence solely related to owning an xbox 360 console that has had the firmware upgraded.
 

witchy

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I use iXtreme 1.4 soley for the purpose of allowing me to specify drive speed, the fact that it allows backups to be played has shocked and disgusted me.
 

mxwizard

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I bet you were equally shocked and disgusted to find that every title released on the xbox 360 to date is also available for download from such vile places as newsgroups and torrents. I'd phone M$ mate and complain about the firmware modification and see if you can get them to do something about it :)
 

janobi

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I bet you were equally shocked and disgusted to find that every title released on the xbox 360 to date is also available for download from such vile places as newsgroups and torrents. I'd phone M$ mate and complain about the firmware modification and see if you can get them to do something about it :)

One step ahead of you mate. I phoned this bloke Bill I know, used to work for M$, and he said he will look into it. lol
 
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