Feeds

Wanna puff the Old Republic? Only if you do it for free

Bioware slips golden handcuffs on SW:TOR fansites

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

Whatever benchmarks Bioware’s upcoming launch of MMOG Star Wars: The Old Republic (SW:TOR) looks like setting in gameplay, it’s already beaten the pack in legalistic control of third-party websites wanting to cover the game.

Any fansites that want Bioware’s support – including promos on Twitter, Facebook and the SW:TOR website – must take no money from anywhere. SW:TOR licensee Bioware sent an email to fansites (including the blog operated by this author) demanding they sign an agreement preventing them from running advertising or accepting donations.

More conventional media are left alone. Senior community coordinator for Bioware David Bass, when asked by TOROZ why large sites such as IGN and Wired can run advertising and still be likely to receive promotion by Bioware in some form, whereas ‘fansites’ can’t, stated:

“There’s a big difference between press and fansites. Fansites are those who cover SW:TOR exclusively. IGN and Wired are press, and therefore they have a completely different process (and have to go through EA and Lucas in order to get anything). The benefit of being a fansite is that you get a direct line to BioWare (ie: Me)”.

Bioware’s strategy seems to be simple: use the passion for the Star Wars franchise to handcuff fansite operators.

Any group wanting to do more with their site – for example, better-resourced game coverage – needs either to forgo the option of any income to support the analysis, or skip the agreement and go to the back of the queue for information from Bioware.

The true test will come when the game launches and the level of commentary increases. It’s hard to foresee any significant amount of well-researched criticism of SW:TOR outside of whichever large media sites bother, and perhaps a handful of dedicated individuals willing to absorb all costs and report the issues for the love of the game. ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Sonos AXES support for Apple's iOS4 and 5
Want to use your iThing? You can't - it's too old
Philip K Dick 'Nazi alternate reality' story to be made into TV series
Amazon Studios, Ridley Scott firm to produce The Man in the High Castle
Too many IT conferences to cover? MICROSOFT to the RESCUE!
Yet more word of cuts emerges from Redmond
Joe Average isn't worth $10 a year to Mark Zuckerberg
The Social Network deflates the PC resurgence with mobile-only usage prediction
Chips are down at Broadcom: Thousands of workers laid off
Cellphone baseband device biz shuttered
Feel free to BONK on the TUBE, says Transport for London
Plus: Almost NOBODY uses pay-by-bonk on buses - Visa
Amazon says Hachette should lower ebook prices, pay authors more
Oh yeah ... and a 30% cut for Amazon to seal the deal
Twitch rich as Google flicks $1bn hitch switch, claims snitch
Gameplay streaming biz and search king refuse to deny fresh gobble rumors
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Backing up Big Data
Solving backup challenges and “protect everything from everywhere,” as we move into the era of big data management and the adoption of BYOD.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.