Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

There is always that moment of “strange silence” in the cinema. You know when they tell you it’s illegal to use a camera or recording device. Making you feel like a criminal, you even glance around and wonder if anyone is doing it or more importantly if someone suspects you are!

What is the likelihood of seeing someone trying to record a movie in the cinema?

If you did see someone, with a real long trench coat and a big bulge in the front, what would you do?

  • Would you think pirate or unibomber?
  • Stand up and question him?
  • Report him to the cinema attendants?
  • Leave him alone and the get the hell out of there!!!

 

The thing is, no one really knows how big the piracy problem is and everyone is afraid to ask. Some people even think that statistics are made up or even over exaggerated! TorrentFreak.com releases the most downloaded torrents for each year, all of them illegal. But I have never seen the original results these statistics come from, not saying that they are made up. What I am saying is we need better measurements, to know where results have come from.

In fact combating Piracy is a big problem because it is too secretive. Even the business and anti-piracy organisations are secretive about their statistics. Of course pirates are very happy with this situation because having no data immediately undermines the results. Plus Pirates with good reason don’t loudly announce any illegal activities. But you can’t fight this problem unless you know what you are dealing with! It almost becomes a catch 22 situation. You need the results to fight piracy, but piracy is secretive so there are no results!

I am a big fan of the PC platform and it’s only now I realise that Piracy is destroying it. Having been exposed to a lot of piracy, I even personally sided with the pirate thought process. It seemed so obvious that Piracy would not directly mean one sale. Who could argue with that!? However all these excuses, was not the question I should be asking, what I should have asked is: How many sales is piracy taking away!

All too often we are justifying the means, and not addressing the cause. So with that in mind, it is still question I cannot answer myself, but WarFace is setting out to find out! For the past month, WarFace has been watching the legal torrents of PC Games. We have included some popular games from the end of 2009 and the titles from 2010. The reason is so we can roughly calculate the number of losses, and more importantly the recoup sales that could be made.

You can see the titles that are being watched: http://www.warfaceaps.com/titles.php

The chart for all the illegal downloads: http://www.warfaceaps.com/amline.php?size=med

With the results, we have estimated recoup values: www.warfaceaps.com/files/TorrentResults-estimatedsales.pdf

If you look at the results on pages 2 and 3 (of TorrentResults-estimatedsales.pdf) you can see the estimated recoup in sales from the current piracy market. I have supplied three percentages, 10, 60, and 90. Now I am not saying that any particular figure is right, but what I am saying is look at the numbers these figures produce.

First I have arranged the percentages into three name categories. These percentages coincide with the side of the fence you lie with. If you are Pro pirate then you are more likely to believe that only 10% of all illegal downloads would end in a sale. Conservative has a recoup value of 60%, and Pro-Publisher is a recoup sales of 90% from the piracy market.

  Pro-Pirate Conservative Pro-Publisher
34.99 € 5,262 € 31,573 € 47,360
44.99 € 6,766 € 40,597 € 60,895

 

From this table you can see the estimated losses per day. So if we take the lowest possible value, a Pro-Pirate opinion, for a €34.99 game. We can make some calculations as to the recoup value from piracy sales. So for the shelf life of a PC game, roughly 6 months (182 Days, we’ll forget about the half day!), this gives us a recoup value of €957,684.

Oh an in this case, if you are wondering what the opposite end of this 10% recoup. The 90% that doesn’t generate sales is approximately €8,619,156. (I am not stating that this is a loss figure!) But it is hard to dismiss, that over 6 months, the average recoup could be just under a million per game.

These figures change as the results are updated which you can download here:  (Located in the Excel spreadsheet, under the last two tabs “Sum Up” and “Sum Up – Calc”.) www.warfaceaps.com/files/TorrentResults.xls

You can also edit the figures in the control tables, in the cells that are highlighted, and use figures that you believe are more accurate, I think you’ll be amaze at the number you get out at the end!

For those that are going to point loop holes in this: To them I say, remember not to be too hung up on the specific numbers, and I encourage active discussion. I might not always be right, but please point it out politely!

First off I have to address that these numbers are all based on the illegal torrents that are currently being downloaded. This gives me a bases in the number that I would expect across the board for PC games, for downloads per day and the cost associated.

Secondly the recoup figures are chosen for a reason, not because I think that’s what it should be. But for easy calculations, 10 and 90 make 100, so people can then turn away and quickly do their own sums, and know the potential losses. For example, some pirates out there might believe the recoup value is 20%, well that’s double, just over €10k per day, per game. And the Conservative estimate was chosen to show the kind of revenues that WarFace claims it will make back.

Some of the top PC game publishers release 10-15 PC games per year, start adding up the figures and you can see they are missing out on huge revenues. I believe “the want” value is the major driving factor for its sales, which sounds really stupid to state the obvious. But this want will also drive the illegal downloads market too, which in turns drives the number of recoup sales we can make from it.

What do illegal torrents and file sharing of PC Games look like?

“A whole lot of money!”

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Of course the two main replies you’ll get are Somalia and Jonny Depp!

It’s funny really, because the people trying to stop Piracy, such as ESA, are also trying to change the name! Wanting to call it “Intellectual Property” Theft, this way we don’t belittle how serious this crime is. They know that when you mention the word “Pirate”; stealing online digital media is not the first thing you think about…

So when I say IP what is the first thing you think of?

Internet Provider, IP Address, Internet Protocol, International Patent … Interior Painting … Interesting People!

Well done, way to clear up the word for Online Piracy!

Who are the ESA?

Who are the PCGA?

Who are the BSA?

Who are the IRMA?

Who are the IDC?

And why do they reduce everything to letters? To be honest I know of these companies, but what do they do? And after approaching these companies, looking for some contacts and information, time after time, we have been point blank ignored!

If you consider these anti-piracy companies are constantly talking about piracy and what a worldwide problem it is. That they need everyone’s help, and that we all have to fight piracy! Ignoring people is plain rude and just going to side the average person with the pirates. Another thing, if you post a comment in the pirate’s forum, you get a reply in five minutes!

Being a good anti-piracy company is about doing one thing very well, and something the WarFace strategy does exceptionally well.  WarFace is friends of everyone, we don’t want to get rid of anything, we just want to see the industry grow and flourish again! A fair days wage for a fair days work!

Drop us an email, visit our site, say hello! Unlike the pirates mentioned in this post, we aren’t rude enough to ignore you!

“I am an Expert!”

Posted: August 14, 2010 in Uncategorized

When I was a young man, a friend once described his definition of an expert. He said, if you think of a leaking pipe, that’s a spurt! Now to stop that pipe from leaking you need to wrap it tightly and put it under pressure. “So an Expert is a spurt under pressure!”

This blog all started when I was talking to a Consultant, Gerry Cahill (www.gerry-cahill.com). A fantastically clever man, and well worthy of the title “Mentor”!

He said to me: “James you are an Expert, and do you know what you should do…? Start a Blog!”

To which I threw back a quizzical look, ‘A blog! Who reads blogs these days?’

He smiled. “Look James, a Blog is a pain in the ass, as you have to constantly update it! If you don’t people get bored and no one will come back, but it helps with promotion of you and your business!”

A drawn and blank stare confronted him. “Yeah, but I am not an Expert?”

Another warm comforting smile beamed out. “Well yes you are, we’ve been sitting here for about an hour and you brought me up to date on piracy in a very short time! You also been able to explain your idea and why it will work, you certainly know more about it than me, or many others!”
Then there was a small pause. “Look at it this way, start the blog, and maybe one day someone will ask you to come speak as a Piracy Expert at some seminar or trade show!”

I have to admit that thought was nice, and yet at the same time terrifying. Yes I do know lots about piracy, and even from many different angles. But what do you have do, in order to qualify as an expert?

Am I an Expert?
The truth is I don’t know everything there is to know about piracy…!
But if you are willing to listen then I am willing to tell what I know!

I suppose I should start with the elephant in the room!
Why do I hate piracy so much…?

Well to tell the truth, I don’t hate piracy… I am reminded of the old adage; if you can’t beat them… join them!  Instead of constantly fighting piracy, wasting our time, we should use it to encourage growth, as in fund it! This unorthodox view is the best solution, as none of the orthodox views come close. This is what WarFace is all about, solving problems and getting results.

I was born in Hong Kong, and let me tell you, out in Asia piracy is huge. As a young man I remember Hong Kong was all about streets. If I wanted to buy a pet bird, I’d walk down bird street. If I wanted a snake, it would be snake street. For piracy, everyone headed to the place that specialised in selling of illegal software… The Golden Arcade!

This was a very out in the open affair, and much like today is still not seen as a crime. Though times are changing! I think Dr Pepper said it best … but now PC gamers are finding out the worst can always sink that little bit further into the pits.

But the strange thing, there are no mutual grounds; it is still very much about knee jerk reactions and imposing restrictions on those who do not deserve it. Illegal downloaders still copy games, the PC gaming industry fights back with more restrictive DRMs for customers. These DRMs don’t work and the pirates laugh. If a DRM does work*, the pirates go on a hate campaign and force the company to withdraw the protection system.

* By “Work”! I mean the constant/consistent protection of a digital media, i.e. not allowing the illegal copying of the product, for more than 10 days. If you compare this to any other product in the world, this is setting the bar very low.
 
How can WarFace, an Anti-Piracy company, say that we should join piracy, and not beat them? Because realistically there is no way to beat the P2P networks or even the File sharing servers. It would be a waste of resources to do this, but maybe there is a way to benefit everyone…

…And there is!

…Do I hate piracy so much? … No!
WarFace is embracing it!

I am PC and Windows 7 was my idea…!
Ever since I was a young boy, I have been an avid fan of the PC Platform. Yes… I am a PC gamer, and I have been proud to say that… since Mac brought out their Windows 84.

And in those days, gaming was great, and like a fine wine has only got better over the years. However great gaming has highlighted one serious problem of the PC. Something that is also the PC’s greatest success; the modular nature of the whole platform.

Yes, copying games maybe fun, and may even get you friends. But will also cause a whiplash in the balance. But it seems no matter what Game Publishers do, they never win! But things will always change… and that’s what scares me…

The next DRM has just been launched and it’s bad! I am of course referring to Cloud Computing, and the first company to use this for Gaming is OnLive, released all across America on June 2010.

But what choices did the game publishers have? They lose millions with the release of the PC version. If I look from their eyes, in business terms, I find it very hard to blame them. The many have spoiled it for a few, and it seems that this time we have pushed to far…

I am here to protect my PC and WarFace was my idea!

Hi, My name is James Grimshaw and I am the founder of WarFace. This is my first blog site, which I have done for a number of reasons. Of course the biggest being that I want to promote what we are doing and find support! But on a more personal level I just want to show people why?

Why it is bad to illegally download?

And why I care so much?

Anyhow, if you haven’t guessed, what does WarFace do?

We protect PC Games from illegal downloading!

Piracy is a huge problem for all digital media products; Music, movies, and PC Software. With Broadband speeds increasing and the pure openness and ease of the PC platform, piracy has nestled in a perfect breeding ground. But Warface has the best solution, not only increasing revenue from piracy losses, but protecting it from illegal mass distribution!

So please I hope you’ll keep tuning in as I tackle more piracy issues…

James