Legal implications for server operators

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Nalates
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Re: Legal implications for server operators

Post by Nalates » Tue Jan 13, 2009 7:12 am

I could qualify as an armature... :lol: ...you gotta love spell check. Now I need click check to go with the spell check drop down.

Some peeps get upset if anyone talks about it.

Chacal, have you been involved in any games where you know what they did? Insurance? Monitoring? Word filters to flag conversations? Age limits?

Chacal
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Re: Legal implications for server operators

Post by Chacal » Tue Jan 13, 2009 8:56 pm

No, I was involved with hosting public servers for FPS games such as Battlefield, CS, HL2, etc.
Basically, you buy the client game and then you can connect to a public server hosted by a provider.

For public servers, the only money involved was for players to buy the client and for providers to run a server. Providers paid no fee to the game publisher and charged no fee to the players.

For private servers, a private group would rent a server from a provider (usually for a fixed amount per month per player slot). The fee covers the rent only, no license fee was paid to the publisher.

Each provider is free to enforce any kind of rules or TOS. Those rules are generally common sense, not much different from the TOS for a public forum. I think Ihave posted my rules somewhere here, ormaybe it was over at GoW.

I have never seen a rule specifically dealing with children, harassment or abuse. I have seen plenty of rules about language, usually the admins are the ones who interpret the rules and act accordingly.

Everything operates under a kind of unwritten disclaimer, basically, "If you don't like it here go play elsewhere. This is the internet and we don't guarantee you'll never be offended."

I have never heard a provider mention insurance or legal issues. I have never seen an age verification mechanism. For some time, we logged the chat from the game servers, but I decided this was a breach of privacy (even though we owned the server) and stopped it.

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Mac_Fife
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Re: Legal implications for server operators

Post by Mac_Fife » Tue Jan 13, 2009 10:23 pm

Chacal wrote:For some time, we logged the chat from the game servers, but I decided this was a breach of privacy (even though we owned the server) and stopped it.
I guess there might be international variations but in UK and North America I think the rule of thumb is so long as there's a statement somewhere that logging/recording will (or may) happen then you're OK (with caveats on what you use the log for and how long you keep it). But that's a bit of an aside.

In MO:UL I remember reading some kind of disclaimer either on mystonline.com or in GT's blurb about MO:UL to the effect that "MO:UL has no age restrictions, but due to live interaction of players you may encounter elements of an adult nature". That's paraphrasing a bit, but you get the drift. And the MO:UL client required you to agree to a 492 line TOS that was copied to your hard drive, but much of the wording in that was Gametap specific.
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