aymcoder

Is giving my gamedata folder legal ?

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Hi ,

I'm playing modded KSP for a while and some of my friends who are not that good at modding the game wants me to give them my gamedata folder but someone said me it was illegal beacause that's a part of the game wich you have to buy .

I hav'nt given the gamedata yet and if i give them the gamedata , i will not give them the Squad folder .

That's kind of a stupid question but i prefer to ask it beacause i don't want to do illegal this even for that :D

So if it's illegal I will have to find an other way to help them modding the game xD 

 

Hoping for a fast answer ,

Thanks 

Aymcoder .

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2 hours ago, aymcoder said:

I hav'nt given the gamedata yet and if i give them the gamedata , i will not give them the Squad folder .

I can't speak for @SQUAD directly, but if it's just the gamedata folder without the squad folder, then it's just mods, and those are free.... I don't see how that's illegal. Again, I'm not a @SQUAD representative, but myself, I think it's OK to share under those circumstances.

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And I would like to add to that... Read each mods' release notes. If it says not to redistribute it, then you have to leave that mod out.

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I'm confused. If your friend has a legitimate copy of the game, it would have a Gamedata folder of its own, into which he/she could move mods. If he/she does not have a copy of the game, the folder by itself would serve no purpose. 

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2 hours ago, Vanamonde said:

I'm confused. If your friend has a legitimate copy of the game, it would have a Gamedata folder of its own, into which he/she could move mods. If he/she does not have a copy of the game, the folder by itself would serve no purpose. 

I think what he means is giving his friends his modded GameData so that his friends can easily install mods. 

 

Like what @adsii1970 said earlier, make sure you don't violate any mod licenses. What you are doing is almost like a modpack, which was a very controversial topic of discussion a while ago. The conclusion is that they are allowed, but must follow licenses.

 

An alternative to sending the GameData folder is to install the mods through CKAN and send your friends the .ckan file. Although CKAN comes with its own issues.

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Wouldn't it be easier to just link them downloads of each mod separately? It's not that hard to install mods, if they know what a gamedata folder is they should know how to install mods. 

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3 hours ago, MiffedStarfish said:

Wouldn't it be easier to just link them downloads of each mod separately? It's not that hard to install mods, if they know what a gamedata folder is they should know how to install mods. 

Keep in mind that there might be personalized settings for some of the mods. Some of them might take a lot of time just to set up.

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There are a few mods I have that specifically say "do not redistribute as a part of a bundle" is why I said what I did. Copying your GaneData folder, in a way, is bundling mods.

Not meaning to rain on anyone's parade.

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8 hours ago, MiffedStarfish said:

Wouldn't it be easier to just link them downloads of each mod separately? It's not that hard to install mods, if they know what a gamedata folder is they should know how to install mods. 

Surely, copying one folder is easier than copy several.

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Yeah, but it might be easier than looking through Download pages and finding out if you can use them in mod packs or not.

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Look, if the OP is just sharing the GameData directory with a friend then mod licenses hardly matter; it's basically personal use and it's a bundle between friends, probably falls under Fair Use. Just zip up everything but the Squad folder and send it on its merry way. It's an easier way than making a mod list and compiling all the personal changes so someone else can do the same.

OTOH if OP is planning on making that available to more than just a few frienda who want to share a common install then they need to pay attention to mod licensing and possibly support concerns.

Bottom line: Keep it personal and there's nothing anyone can really gripe about. Make it public and you run into usage concerns.

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You could make an instructional video on how to install mods and have bad royalty free music playing in the background.

It's probably easier than going trough all this legal stuff.

Edited by Kerbal pancake

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13 hours ago, regex said:

Look, if the OP is just sharing the GameData directory with a friend then mod licenses hardly matter; it's basically personal use and it's a bundle between friends, probably falls under Fair Use. Just zip up everything but the Squad folder and send it on its merry way. It's an easier way than making a mod list and compiling all the personal changes so someone else can do the same.

OTOH if OP is planning on making that available to more than just a few frienda who want to share a common install then they need to pay attention to mod licensing and possibly support concerns.

Bottom line: Keep it personal and there's nothing anyone can really gripe about. Make it public and you run into usage concerns.

Agreed 100% ... 

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On 19/08/2017 at 8:37 PM, aymcoder said:

someone said me it was illegal because that's a part of the game which you have to buy

They are wrong. You do not buy mods, only the KSP game. If you do not copy the Squad folder then you are not copying anything which is paid for.

I see no legal problem helping your friend get the same modlist as you in this manner.

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20 minutes ago, John FX said:

They are wrong. You do not buy mods, only the KSP game. If you do not copy the Squad folder then you are not copying anything which is paid for.

I see no legal problem helping your friend get the same modlist as you in this manner.

Sometimes a mod writer will ask, as part of their license, for their mod not to be bundled. The reasoning behind this is that there are times mods conflict with other mods. If your friend begins to add to the mods you give them WITHOUT knowing where the mods come from, then they will not be able to get the information about potential conflicts, fixes, or even updates. (I do not use CKAN, I prefer to manually update my mods).

Best thing to do is to teach your friend how to install mods, then send them a link to the mods you use. Once you've done this, your friend will not be dependent upon you, won't be Pakled, and will enjoy KSP more knowing how it works...

 

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Spoiler

 

Don't worry, nobody is going to call the cops on you for sharing stuff. SQUAD literally has better stuff to do.

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6 hours ago, John FX said:

They are wrong. You do not buy mods, only the KSP game. If you do not copy the Squad folder then you are not copying anything which is paid for.

I see no legal problem helping your friend get the same modlist as you in this manner.

Just because mods are free doesn't mean they are not copyrighted.

Is it legal? Probably not, for reasons listed above.

Will you go to jail for it? Highly doubtful.

But it's wrong” whoaaa, not so fast, partner. Think of what the various legal provisions are trying to achieve. Squad won't care assuming your friend paid for his copy. The authors of copyrighted mods? I highly doubt it's this kind of distribution they have an issue with. Being bundled with zero-effort mod packs and on the hook for support; yes. Being sold commercially on sketchy websites or cd-rom bundles (do those even still exist?); yes. Getting inundated with vague "it no worky" emails after a botched CKAN install against their will; yes, yes, yes. But a friend copying over his mods to another friends gamedata folder so they can swap gamesaves? I seriously doubt that that is the kind of redistribution they had in mind when not allowing redistribution.

I could be wrong though. Wouldn't be a first.

A final thought is that you should always look at it from the copyright holder's perspective on what is reasonable, not your own (real or acted out). “I'm just helping my friend. Instead of the inconvenience of a memory stick I just host them on a website. With multiple configurations to choose from. But it's really just meant to help my one friend, it's not my fault that hunderds of others download it after I heavily advertised it on reddit, really" is clearly NOT ok.

Why not simply teach your friend how to install mods? Teach a man to fish, etc.

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11 minutes ago, Kerbart said:

I seriously doubt that that is the kind of redistribution they had in mind when not allowing redistribution.

I could be wrong though. Wouldn't be a first.

Even if they did, what legal recourse do they have against something they have precisely zero knowledge of? If it's all private between a few parties and no one's advertising the pack as their own or some other shenanigans then as far as the mod author is concerned it's just someone using their project as intended. It's not like you can magically tell a copied install apart from a manual install...

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1 minute ago, regex said:

Even if they did, what legal recourse do they have against something they have precisely zero knowledge of? If it's all private between a few parties and no one's advertising the pack as their own or some other shenanigans then as far as the mod author is concerned it's just someone using their project as intended. It's not like you can magically tell a copied install apart from a manual install...

I'm sure the fine people of CSI:Miami can do a gentrace on the electrons used and trace it back to your hard disk!

On a more serious note, I do promote "is it right" as a criterium over "will you get caught." I don't see this as a particularly harmful scenario with an intention to gain... something... in a wrong way. With the caveat that it's not intended to promote piracy under the guise of "helping a fellow player." 

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under these circumstances, you'd probably get a pass, since: 

1 you are only doing this for a small, private, and very select group of people (not distributing it online)

2 you can do the same thing by sitting at each person's computer for a reasonable amount of time (to download the mods and install them), so it only becomes a time saving event

3 the only people that would really know are the few people you actually do this for (unless you are crazy enough to break part 1)

4 they already own the game.

 

now understand: if any of the above is not true...you can get into a lot of trouble.

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To my mind they are not redistributing anything, they are helping a single friend with installation. Like if their friend did not have internet access and they downloaded the mods for them.

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At this point, teaching your friend what a "mod" is would probably have been easier than attempting to distill a legal interpretation from all this.

And it would probably take less time than copying an average gamedata folder to a stick.

Liking KSP in the first place takes a braincell or two, they can manage.

 

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