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 Bethesda.theft thoughts?

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TheThompsonBoss



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PostSubject: Bethesda.theft thoughts?    Thu Jun 09, 2016 8:27 am

This post will be talking about the growing problem with Fallout 4 modding right now. That problem being people create mods on the nexus and then other people taking their mods and posting it on Bethesda.net without permission. At the moment Bethesda isn't doing anything to stop this and honestly...it's stupid. Bethesda should be on top of this. They should be monitoring what mods get posted and if there is an issue they should look straight into right away.

Now, I know some people are gonna say, "Well they can't monitor everything. They're a gaming company and their busy working on their own stuff" to which I reply, why did they get into the modding scene at all then? Seriously. Morrowind, Oblivion, Fallout 3, Fallout New Vegas, and Skyrim they left it to us. They gave us the tools (Construction kit, GECK, Creation Kit) and then left it up to us to make the mods and post them. But with Fallout 4 they kept bragging about "Console supported mods!" and they even set up a website and everything, but then when problems begin to arise they refuse to get involved. It's stupid.

Anyway, I'm sorry for the rambling. It's 3:27 am here and I'm about to head to bed. I guess my question is, what is everyone's thoughts on these problems right now and what is a possible solution to fix this?

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PostSubject: Re: Bethesda.theft thoughts?    Thu Jun 09, 2016 8:57 am

Can't agree with you more on this one. Bethesda's website is in my opinion very unorganized. The mod theft is the worse and no one is really doing anything about it. I play on console, I'm desperate for good mods, but not desperate to the point where I pirate it onto Bethesda. It's very unnecessary and very frustrating when nothing is done about it.
I can't really think of many solutions to this problem considering I'm really bad at finding one, but all I have to say is that mod theft is stupid. Either make your own or wait a couple months until good ones are out. And the Bethesda thing, I sure hope they're aware of the problems caused by their decision to allow mods onto consoles and I seriously hope they are in the process of doing something about it.
Sorry if none this makes sense, it's late here too and my brain is fried from a long day of gaming and driving. But all I wanted to do is get my thoughts of this subject out of my head before I go to bed.

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PostSubject: Re: Bethesda.theft thoughts?    Thu Jun 09, 2016 9:53 am

As a fellow mod author I have mixed feelings all around on this subject.

None of my mods have been reposted that I'm aware of. Though a lot of them are already posted in both PC and XB1 versions. The only ones that are not are things that won't work on XB1 (FO4Edit scripts) or armor ports that would instantly get banned (not on Nexus either).

I would agree up to a point, that the way Bethesda is handling this is garbage. It absolutely can be, and should be, better. Part of the problem is the whole interface of the website is pretty trash which is part of the problem. Only their moderators have the ability to delete comments on mods or posts in forums, and that's about the extent of it. There isn't even a way to report individual comments short of pming a moderator. Making a forum post to point them out will get *you* in trouble.

The way they handle "dealing with" the culprits doing the piracy and infringing copyrights is laughable. Sure they delete the mods so *more* people can't download it. And eventually if the perpetrator repeatedly offends they ban the account. But the only thing preventing them from creating another account, is having another email address. Hey wait, they're free, and plentiful. Boom new "user", new piracy problem.

I have two questions that haven't been answered. How does one prove that a mod was, or wasn't, taken or reposted with permission? How does one prove they are an original author of some work? I get there are obvious factors involved to identify things that are owned by prominent rights holders. Like someone posting a teddy bear that looks like Winnie The Pooh, since I can be fairly certain Disney wouldn't give rights for that. But let's say for arguments sake I posted up an armor I made myself on Nexus. Then posted it on Bethesda some time later. Maybe days, maybe weeks later. And then some D.bag decides he doesn't like me for whatever reason and gets a bunch of people to report the mod as stolen. How exactly am I supposed to prove that I'm the original author?

I bring this up, because I saw earlier on one of DDProduction's mods where a user commented that he thought it was stolen and the person posting was an imposter because the original author hid the mod on Nexus because people were stealing it. Exactly how would he be expected to prove he created the mod and is posting it himself?

This brings me to another concern. As like everywhere else they have a DMCA take down procedure. Again requiring one to submit proof of rights ownership to have the infringing material removed.

Thankfully, I think the latest scare from DDProductions about being able to screw up the consoles, bloating saves, corrupting saves, etc has helped to slow it a little. There will undoubtedly be some that will keep doing it and getting the mods pulled and their temp accounts banned. But it seems like it's slowed down after the weekend rush. Though that may just be because the moderators are there during the week.

Bethesda could implement a few methods but nothing will be perfect. It will ultimately come down to the users doing the right thing and not posting stuff that isn't theirs. Same basic premise behind most of the modding sites. There's nothing to prevent me from taking some mod from Nexus and posting it here. Sure, once someone noticed it wasn't mine and reported it to a mod it would likely be deleted and I'd be banned, but then that's no different from how Bethesda is currently handling things.

Some ideas that have been suggested, and potential problems with them:

Implement some sort of validation (aka have a moderator review before it can be downloaded). Besides this requiring some stupid amount of man hours. This couldn't be more complex than simply reviewing textures to make sure there's no nudity, or making sure it doesn't have other well known copyrighted material, like a Disney asset or something equally easily identifiable. Expecting them to somehow be able to validate it's not taken from Nexus, or LoversLab or yet some other mod site is asking a bit much. There's no way that they can familiarize themselves with all the mods. Nor any way to precisely check that one being posted isn't "stolen" from somewhere else. Case in point: I don't use the same name here, Nexus, LoversLab, or Bethesda.net. They all have different names. So if they just did a lazy search to see if the mod posted on Bethesda was also on Nexus they'd see it was, by a "different" author and say "nope it's stolen". So that idea's kinda out.

Implement a better method of crowdsourcing infringement reports. Currently they don't have a report option for such a specific thing. One can report a mod for various reasons and pick something close and detail their complaint. Then eventually a mod reviews it. Kind of similar to Nexus and probably other sites.

Disallow "test" mod posts. This wouldn't do a damn thing. They could easily add keyword triggers to filter out "acceptable" titles but that can be easily defeated.

Implement a wait period after initial upload. Again doesn't really do anything. Just means that the first post of the mod takes 20min? 45min? 2 hours? 24hours? Before someone can download it. Sure it's a little of a deterrent for people to keep reposting stuff that gets taken down. It's just as big a deterrent for legitimate mod authors. If any type of that was implemented I'd be leaving.

Ok, this turned out to be longer than I anticipated. Also a semi-rant post. I should have majored in English.
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PostSubject: Re: Bethesda.theft thoughts?    Thu Jun 09, 2016 10:41 am

That's like, the 3rd topic on the issue XD

As I said on the other two, I think that the mod thieves are selfish bastards who are damaging ( even more ! ) the reputation of console players... While also damaging the PC Modding community ! They are taking all the motivation from the modders who work hard by stealing their mods and earning money ( !! ) from it !

I totally understand the Modders' reaction, they are either quitting or hiding their mods to prevent these sons of bitches from stealing what they took a lot of time to create ! I think it's a real shame Sad

However, what I don't understand, is the community geting angry at Bethesda ! While they are the source of the problem, they try to handle the situation as a company... That mean that they are using legal actions against the thieves because that's what a company would do !
Of course they won't react like the Nexus' Admins... They don't know how to deal with the situation yet... But I think sooner or later they will hire a community manager because we all know that Bethesda cares about its community opinion...

All in All, I think that these theft shall not go unpunished for too long ! I trust in Bethesda, they will find a solution

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PostSubject: Re: Bethesda.theft thoughts?    Thu Jun 09, 2016 10:52 am

Yeah i agree they should definitely be more strict with the way you upload mods to bethesda.net so maybe you would have to login to your nexus account to upload a mod or at least something along those lines as that would definitely be alot better than whats happening now. Also i agree with everything in the post above me because anybody who does steal is a bastard and they shouldn't be doing it because by doing so they demoralize the modders from making anymore mods cause they know there mods will get stolen or copied.

So to summarize bethesda should definitely be more strict and if these people keep on stealing mods then their might not be more mods to steal anymore as the modders won't bother making them if they're going to get stolen

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PostSubject: Re: Bethesda.theft thoughts?    Thu Jun 09, 2016 2:15 pm

@markeydgn @SomeGuysUserName Okay, perhaps I was a little bit out or line saying everything was Bethesda's fault (Keep in mind I was exhausted when I wrote this post.), but I still stand by what I said about them having to do something. Perhaps they are looking into the issue, but so far we haven't seen many results. The thing is if they wanted to get involved in modding then they should have some sort of way to work out these problems. I know they can't go through thousands of mods, but there needs to be a system. @keatit71 had a brilliant idea! Why not just connect your account to the nexus? I understand that they are not involved or associated with the Nexus, but perhaps they could contact the owners/creators of the Nexus and work out some kind of deal so that way when you post on the Nexus you can have the option of posting on the Bethesda site (Provided there's no copyright material or nudity) and then there! Problem solved! I'm sure it's more complicated than that, but it's an idea at least. Create a Bethesda account through your Nexus account and link them up. Kinda like what Youtube does with Twitter.


@FafnirEtherion I honestly didn't know other people posted about this topic. XD I didn't see anything so I just decided to do one. Anyway, I don't blame the console players. I know it's not their fault and I don't think these pirating mods will "destroy modding". However I do feel it's hurting the modding community significantly. There's no trust now and alot of incredible mods are being hidden from the public because of what's going on. I wrote a solution in the response above, but basically my idea or should I say @keatit71's idea is perhaps link up the Nexus with the Bethesda site and that way you have the option to upload your mod. If someone else uploads it from a different account then Bethesda could check and correct the problem. Of course Bethesda would have to contact the Nexus owners and work out some kind of deal which...might not be good, but hey it's a start at least.

@keatit71 I said this several times up above, but I love your idea! Very Happy Simply link up the Nexus and Bethesda account and then boom! You have a way to help prevent mod pirating and Bethesda would be able to easily check through your account to see if your the original author or not. Hopefully someone over at Bethesda get's the idea. Like you and @FafnirEtherion, I hate mod pirating and honestly I hope to see it end soon. We'll just have to wait and see.

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PostSubject: Re: Bethesda.theft thoughts?    Thu Jun 09, 2016 2:35 pm

@TheThompsonBoss Yeah ! I think that you idea that the Nexus and Beth.net working together could be great Very Happy !
But I really can't imagine a company like Bethesda/Zenimax teaming up with a " Puny " Website such as the Nexus...

But, the idea is great, and, to some extend, it might work !

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PostSubject: Re: Bethesda.theft thoughts?    Thu Jun 09, 2016 3:28 pm

@FafnirEtherion You're probably right which is kind of sad. The Nexus might be small to them, but in the modding community it's a very big deal. That's what big companies like Bethesda/Zenimax need to understand. When you get involved in stuff like modding you need to know everything about it including the sites that support such things. Well, one can dream at least...

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PostSubject: Re: Bethesda.theft thoughts?    Thu Jun 09, 2016 3:37 pm

@TheThompsonBoss Exactly... That's kind of sad, but I think they are too different to work with each other Sad

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PostSubject: Re: Bethesda.theft thoughts?    Thu Jun 09, 2016 4:04 pm

@TheThompsonBoss and @FafnirEtherion yeah it is a bit sad that they haven't considered the nexus very important because if I'm right most of the mods for their games come from the nexus and from here but I think that if they could work out something you never know they might get together and try to do something

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PostSubject: Re: Bethesda.theft thoughts?    Fri Jun 10, 2016 1:42 am

This console-mod launch was a problem since the day they announced it. Bethesda isn't doing anything to stop them and the more popular mods can't even be played because of console limitations.

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PostSubject: Re: Bethesda.theft thoughts?    Fri Jun 10, 2016 2:55 am

Well there's been some news posted.

Bethesda now has a Dev news section at https://bethesda.net/#en/devnotes

It's linked from every mod page up in the top right corner. It's a start. So far they have reposted the guidelines for posting mods. Also a new roadmap which looks "promising" I guess. Linking beth.net account to a steam account will slow down any piracy at least. Tho people can easily create a free steam account and link that to a new free beth account. But it's a little time consuming for what potentially little short lived "benefit" it would have.

Short excerpt quote from that page:
"Additional Security for Mod Uploads to Bethesda.net
Creation Kit users will be required to own Fallout 4 to upload mods to Bethesda.net via a Steam-linked Bethesda.net account. Steam-linked Bethesda.net account will not be required to download or use the Creation Kit itself, only to upload to Bethesda.net. Users found to be breaking our Terms of Service or Code of Conduct will investigated by our Moderation team and may have their Bethesda.net accounts banned."

It's slightly amusing since in order to download (and then sue) the Creation Kit it requires you have a local PC copy of Fallout 4. And the only way to get a legit Fallout 4 on pc is to purchase it through Steam. But you don't have to link the accounts to use CK. I guess that's just to appease those who might complain about privacy implications when they just want to use CK and post to private sites like Nexus, here, or another of their own choosing.
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PostSubject: Re: Bethesda.theft thoughts?    Fri Jun 10, 2016 3:19 am

@SomeGuysUserName: The point of linking the accounts is that it verifies that you actually own FO4 rather than running a pirated copy. I don't think it's just as simple as linking accounts, coz that'll do absolutely nothing.

It's a step in the right direction: unless mod thieves are so desperate they're willing to shell out money for a new game, I don't think they'll do it for s***s and gigs.

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PostSubject: Re: Bethesda.theft thoughts?    Fri Jun 10, 2016 3:48 am

Just my 2 cents. While I'm not a fan of some of Bethesda methods, I doubt they want to be associated with thievery. Even being apathetic is just as bad, as this is an enabling attitude.

I wonder if some sort of filter system could be used, like on youtube. Where the file could be scanned to see how similar it is to the original Nexus file, and if it's a certain margin of similarity (95-99%?) it goes up to further review.

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PostSubject: Re: Bethesda.theft thoughts?    Fri Jun 10, 2016 6:35 am

They've mentioned looking into an automated take down system. But proactively scanning and checking them for dupe items from Nexus won't work. There are legit files from Nexus that are reposted on Beth.net and that type of system would flag them and remove them.
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PostSubject: Re: Bethesda.theft thoughts?    Fri Jun 10, 2016 6:54 am

I think it's pretty rough. Console users can't differentiate from the authentic author of a mod with someone else who just scrapped the file, so they can't really tell whether they contribute to the chaos or not.

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PostSubject: Re: Bethesda.theft thoughts?    Fri Jun 10, 2016 7:07 am

Pretty much, I've identified a few and then went to Nexus and let those people know but they never respond. It's just running rampant, there's no use us smaller people trying to do anything because there's no real way to fight it. What pisses me off the most though as I read the comments on Beth Net, these users know they're stolen goods and say "oh be careful" to downright "oh yeah fuck them high mighty modders wont share".

I mean we're already living in a very entitled society these days, at least here in the US and many of the console (not all) are part of the younger generation that thinks they're owed everything.

I gave up pretty quick and just can't help but shake my head. There's no use. Bethesda is handling this very very badly and have not been communicative with the community. Pete Hines the supposed PR man has done zero to help the issue, and can't even be bothered to tweet "We're looking into the issue". Which tells me they're not doing anything. They're just standing by and letting it happen. I've said my piece in a couple threads and am just gonna wait to see how things play out and hope for the best.

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PostSubject: Re: Bethesda.theft thoughts?    Fri Jun 10, 2016 7:58 am

@Evmeister yeah its pretty annoying and sad isn't it because they should be doing something about it and just because our modding communities are small and their a big gaming company doesn't mean they need to ignore us. Because we provide the mods and they should appreciate that as well as doing more to protect the mod makers works and creations. Because the mod makers are important as they provide the mods and whatever else we want in a game they make it so that if we want we can have light sabers in a game or a drivable UFO its the mod makers that make their games so popular like they are now.

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PostSubject: Re: Bethesda.theft thoughts?    Fri Jun 10, 2016 8:11 am

@Evmeister I agree with your on both points. This is what I meant in the post that started this thread. If Bethesda is gonna get involved in the modding scene then they need to be there for the problems. Not just simply "We're working on it". I understand it's hard and frustrating for them to, but seriously they seem to be giving no support.

Also I've seen a few comments of people acting like they deserve these mods and should automatically get them. No. I'm sick of people acting like they just automatically deserve the mods. Really the only we can do is give the real mod authors and support and be patient. Hopefully in time things will be fixed.

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PostSubject: Re: Bethesda.theft thoughts?    Fri Jun 10, 2016 9:11 am

After a quick tour on Beth.net's mods section, I've seen that some Keyboard warriors are seriously insulting mod authors and reporting their mods just because they THINK that it is stolen content !

For example, I've been in the comment section of a UMP-45 Mod for X-Box and I've seen a SHIT TON of self-righteous internet vigilantes saying " Console Peasants like you are the cancer of gaming ", " Console Mod users are not used to the modding scene, they will be the end of us ", "you're asking for trouble " etc...

Funny thing is : It was the actual mod author ( who uploaded his mod on the Nexus beforehand ) who uploaded his weapon on Beth.net !!!

Some people are jus too quick and jump to conclusions really fast... Like some kind of Console Mod Racism XD " It's too nice to be a real console mod ! It must be stolen ! "
That's just mean and idiotic... I don't know which are the worst : Self-Righteous Mod Vigilante who attack actual mod authors or Mod Thieves...

I guess Mod Thieves are the worst despite all this, because they are the cause of all this fuzz...

PS : I've also seen that there is a " report " button now ! I don't know it it was there before the maintenance and the Bethesda response to the situation, but it's there

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