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Epic Games Aims For Default Judgment on Alleged 14-Year-Old Fortnite Cheater

Epic Games filed a lawsuit against a 14-year-old Fortnite cheater, and now the company is seeking a default judgment against the boy and his mom.

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zaherdab230d ago

well ... they should ban him from the game and streaming the game not drag him to court ... that's a bit excessive

Eldyraen230d ago (Edited 230d ago )

He refused to take down YouTube videos of how to cheat repeatedly (hack consoles, cheat in other games, etc) and his family even filed a counter suit to keep them up. They basically brought it on themselves at that point as if you don’t defend your IP you’re allowing worse later.

Also, don’t support a monetized hack which made it that much worse in cases like this.

Basically, when asked nicely don’t be a dick about it and then have your mommy write a letter decrying your innocence instead of removing the issue in an easy manner. The adult that was sued for the same simply can’t play anymore or has to pay a $5k fine—after they already banned him over a dozen times under different accounts. Kid probably did the same.

zaherdab230d ago

I see didn't know the full extent but still i feel taking players to court due to exploits they need to patch is excessive is it a common practice by other devs ?

didnt they patch these flaws with the game ? I mean I understand they want to defend their IP but the primary way is knowing of these exploits and patch them promptly.

rainslacker230d ago (Edited 230d ago )

This was much more than just him cheating in the game.

Highlights

1. Created multiple accounts and cheated on all of them
2. Streamed paid exploit hacks, and promoted it on his channel
3. Laughed at the cease and desist publicly on his YouTube, and acted like he was untouchable.
4. Then after public acknowledgement of understanding what the cease and desist was asking him to do, continued to do the same things he wasn't allowed to do on Epic's servers.
5. Fraudulently claimed to have his parents permission to play(although that came out after when people were trying to say Epic couldn't sue him because he was a minor). This was later reversed as his parents realized that fraud is a criminal offense, and they didn't want to go that route. Pretty common in cases where stupid people try to defend based on what they feel is right, as opposed to what the law states.

It isn't common practice to sue a person like that. However, this was more than just a suit against a cheater. It was actually a copyright infringement claim, as cheating in an online game is not a civil offense. It could be possible they could sue him for continuing to use the service when they said he couldn't though....however, that's not what the case is about, although I'm sure it'll be used to show intent to build Epic's case.

In any case, this probably all started with a form letter. The kid then elevated the issue where they forced Epic's hand. It never would have made it to the press, except the mother was stupid and tried to vilify Epic for going after her son, all while naming her son in the process, then being mad that Epic made it public even though it was her own fault. At some point, Epic just wasn't going to let it drop, because it was escalate to the point where they had to make an example to protect their larger interest.

Sucks for the kid, but having seen a couple of his videos, he's a twat anyhow, and could stand to be taken down a few pegs and brought into the real world.

CrimsonWing69230d ago

It’s s freaking videogame... cheat codes, cheating has been in videogames from the beginning.Just do what any normal minded person would do and just ban him from ever playing the game online. Dragging him to court is stupid and like the person on here said it’s excessive.

rainslacker230d ago

They did ban him. On many occassions. That didn't stop him from not only continue to play the game, but using paid cheats to make other players have to suffer him. What made it escalate was that he promoted those cheats on YouTube. What made it worse, is he laughed off the cease and desist letter from Epic. That cease and desist should have been the end of it, but he showed no remorse, laughed at Epic about it, and acted like he was untouchable, all while still promoting that others cheat in the game.

He forced Epic's hand. Otherwise, this never would have gone to court. If he didn't promote the cheats, he probably could have continued to keep playing after continuous bans, all while continuing to cheat.

This is actually a copyright issue case though. That's how they got him, because cheating or playing while banned isn't a civil matter, unless they want to go the criminal route of fraud and possibly trespassing, which is now a thing in the connected world. Using a server without permission, after being asked to leave, is actually a criminal offense. A federal crime really. Kids lucky he's not facing criminal charges to be honest.

ZaWarudo230d ago

"Monetary damages"

Oh f*** off Epic. You guys made over 200 million in March with Fortnite.

rainslacker230d ago

And they have to pay the lawyers to get this kid to stop so he's not ruining it for others. They have to spend money on moderation because this kid promoted cheats, which potentially got more people to use them, thus more moderation. They're also suing the company that made the cheats.

Monetary damages don't mean that they necessarily lost money, but that they spent it. And its on Epic to prove that they lost money on this, and the defense to prove that they didn't. That's how civil cases work.

narsaku230d ago

Kids don't stop cheating because a kid got taken to court over promoting hacks. That's not a thing.

This is a waste of time and a stupid PR move. Nothing will result in this suing, the kid will get his hand slapped and a judges afternoon is going to be completely friggen wasted when they could be focusing on things that matter.

Everyone else is doing the smart thing, make better anti-cheat software. It's worked for decades, it'll work for this game too. It's a free to play game that babies love to play, it's destiny is to be a hackers sandbox unless they do some serious constant vigilance coding.

The war on hacking in a video game is never going to end in court. It will only end when it simply can't exist in an online product.

rainslacker230d ago

Maybe not. But the kid knew what he was doing was wrong. He just laughed it off. He had no remorse, and laughed at Epic when they tried to get him to stop.

This isn't some kid who was unaware of what he was doing was wrong. He was stupid, and thought he could do whatever he wanted, because in his idiocy, he thought he was untouchable.

Epic will protect it's interest. Being a kid doesn't remove his culpability, regardless of if he was aware of what he was doing was wrong or not. Ignorance of the law, is not protection from justice.

"Everyone else is doing the smart thing, make better anti-cheat software".

Yeah....as I said, that costs money. That's monetary damage. But you think Epic shouldn't seek compensation for having to even do that?

You're placing the blame on the wrong person, because you feel that Epic doesn't deserve what they work for, and they should just bite the bullet and take the loss. You're sympathy for the kid is misplaced. Go research the case, then go see if you can find copies of his videos where he laughed this off. The kid is a twat. If you still support him after watching his videos, then I can't see anyone thinking you're worth listening to.

229d ago
rainslacker229d ago

He was sent a cease and desist letter based on copyright claims. He laughed them off publicly, and in that video made it obvious he knew it was wrong, he just didn't care.

The reason it's brought up is because his parents made a big deal about it when the broke the story to try and make the kid the victim. That was more the forum that made a big deal about that trying to make him innocent because of that. The case itself doesn't revolve around that though, because being legally able to sign a contract has nothing to do with if he violated copyright laws. However, it's all interconnected based on his response to the cease and desist. The cheats themselves really don't have much to do with it in terms of the law here.

Anyhow, yes, the kid should get a lawyer, but that's another matter. The damages themselves would be listed in the court case, but they're seeking default judgement, which means it's probably going to be settled. Regardless, the notion that there are no monetary damages is wrong, because the case by itself will cost them money. It's just the way it is, and it's measured by the courts. The plantiff can ask for what they want, but its on them to provide proof of damages. Either way, some modest damages are rewardable even if the damages are more abstract.

As far as filing for bankruptcy, that won't help. Judgements are not usually included in any bankruptcy. The kid himself wouldn't be eligible to file for bankruptcy anyways. He'll have to pay it in some way, and the courts would decide what is appropriate based on what he is capable of. It won't be the first time a kid has been sued, and kids aren't exempt from civil cases with different laws like you would see in criminal cases.

As far as violation, yeah that's actually true in some ways. But just because it happens doen't mean the kid shouldn't be on the hook. If Epic, or someone else is violating copyrights, it's on the copyright holder to file a claim. Two wrongs don't make a right, but this kid isn't in a position to leverage that to his advantage as he owns nothing that Epic would be violating. Such cases however aren't always intentional, because it would be practically impossible to keep track of all that. More often than not, those kinds of claims are settled before they ever go to court, and there are laws within software copyright that allow two similar patents to be developed independently with no recourse by those who actually file the copyright. But that's not really the topic here.

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narsaku230d ago

Suing a baby who's obviously an a-typical spoiled/narcissistic brat, "like 90% of all kids are these days", with parents who obviously don't understand that gaming is more than an action figure from Walmart is.. Retarded.

Nothing is going to be learned or gained. And as the industry has seen time and time again, when someone tries to scare cheaters, they just get more angry and toxic as a whole and then devote even more time to creating hacks.

Maybe they should spend some of that money on hiring someone who can code a reliable anti-cheat system instead of wasting their legal systems precious time on a stupid kids game over a toddler who made a Youtube channel?

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