Samsung abuses copyright to censor satirical exploding phone Grand Theft Auto mod


Originally published at:


They really should just own it at this point.


Cross your fingers the precedent stands!


I wonder if Samsung have actually considered the consequences of their actions here?
A good 95%+ of the media coverage of this mod i’ve seen has been due to Samsung trying to kill the mod.

If they’d simply left it alone, it’s likely i’d have never noticed it even existed. And that’s as someone who follows a fair few gaming news sites…


Someone should invent a name for that.


In my perfect world, if you sent out an obviously bogus DMCA takedown notice, you would lose your right to distribute the media.


Definitely needs some sort of cost attached for incorrect uses, for they fling DMCA’s about like confetti at the moment…


Huh. And I would never have known about the (awesome!) mod if they hadn’t tried to remove it… Funny how that works


Yeah, like the “Strickened Effect”?

No, no…that doesn’t sound exactly right…



It’s called the 'Strailand effect, isn’t it? Somehow related to Australia, maybe?


What happens in cases like this where, on Samsung’s part, there’s not even any media involved?

I have to say, as a non-lawyer, I don’t understand the tradition for video game companies to pay licensing fees for real products (usually for vehicles) to appear in their games. It seems absurd. It’s certainly not a copyright issue. Presumably this tradition got started because of trademark issues and the functionality of the product being, on some level, simulated in the game, but it still doesn’t make sense to me.


They can no longer sell the product in question. In this case, Galaxy phones. See how that might put a stop to these bogus tactics?


Or in this case, maybe not so much…


I don’t know much about such things, being the wonderful people person (who needs people) that I am…

Stalinsand effect?


Strickland effect?


With this cavalcade of ideas, maybe one of us is reeeeeaaaaaallllllyyyyy a singer in Malibu trying to change their self-inflicted infamously-named effect?


Y’all aren’t considering the possibility that Samsung might actually be considering handing all of those unsold/returned devices over to their military branch for resale as timed projectile explosives. They have to do something with them, and this seems like the most straightforward product conversion.

Before they can even craft a press release, GTA goes and makes a joke out of it! Screwed at every turn! What’s a technological behemo-juggernought to do…?


Because in realistic racing games, players perceive some value in real cars being simulated. It would feel kind of cheap to drive a “Bravado Buffalo” instead of a Ford Mustang in Gran Turismo or Forza. Barry Bonds notoriously opted out of the Players’ Association standard licensing contract to make his own deals, which resulted in Bonds’ likeness being replaced with fictional players sporting identical stats. If more players held out publishers would have incentive to pay up.

It goes the other direction too, for things less fundamental to the game. Companies pay developers/publishers to have real products placed in games, most often in the form of billboards in sports titles.


Ok, so in films, if anything, car manufacturers tend to be paying filmmakers for product placement to get their automobiles in the movie, yet for games, even non-racing-games, the expectation is that they’ll be paid (this also extends to aircraft and weapon manufacturers, etc.). Perception of value or not, there has to be some legal mechanism by which manufacturers think they can demand payment. There are laws specifically concerning the right of ownership to celebrity likenesses, but the closest thing for manufactured goods is trademark - which applies when making a competing good, not a likeness of the item in art.


Seems like EFF needs a directory of sleazy lawyers.