Mediafire

Jan. 30th, 2013 12:28 am
hat_plays_sims: All I did was crop-- go read Bite Me by Dylan Meconis, you'll laugh. (Default)
[personal profile] hat_plays_sims
No, as far as I know, I'm not having issues. However, I do hear that now, instead of taking down files with no notice, they're taking down files with a letter about copyright infringement and a notice of 'strikes' against your account. It's driving a lot of Simmers to places like Box.net or Dropbox, and that's your right, but if you KNOW that the files removed don't violate copyright law, PLEASE submit a ticket or otherwise inform Mediafire that they deleted your files without cause, especially if you have a paid account.

This is why. A quick google search suggests that no other online group is having this much trouble with Mediafire lately, and if it's targeted at free Sims uploads, widespread, and annoying, then there's really only one person's MO it fits.

I haven't received one of the new copyright notices; the one I did recieve included a link. I clicked the link, filled out the form, and waited. Mediafire didn't get back to me immediately, in fact I had to get back to them. What happens is, someone files a claim against the file, the uploader files a counterclaim, and the claimant then has ten days to respond. If you don't hear back from Mediafire after ten days, contact them again, and if the claimant didn't respond or didn't adequately respond, they'll restore the files.

When my sexyfeet baby clothes were removed without notice, I first tried re-uploading with altered file names (which were still blocked), I tried submitting a ticket. You do this by logging into Mediafire, clicking Help, filling out the form (I used the 'general questions' flag) and waiting. They say they'll get back to you in 24 hours, but they took six days to get back to me, two weeks to get back to Quintcia, and only two days to get back to G-Knee.

The point is, they DO get back to you. And I haven't heard from anyone who has contacted Mediafire and hasn't had their files restored. (So at least they actually do care about copyright law, even if they're also scared shitless of the FBI.)

If you choose to submit a ticket or file a counterclaim, here's what you need to include when you write to Mediafire:

0. Before you even start writing, stay calm. Be professional, adult, and friendly. (That your files were removed is not Mediafire's fault. They can't police every download, so when a file gets taken down, it's because someone complained. That they take down files instead of contacting the uploader isn't because they don't respect the uploader's rights, it's because Mediafire is scared shitless of becoming the next Megaupload.) People paid to handle complaints do not often see the civil side of their customer base. Be The Nice One.

1. If you're submitting a support ticket, you will need the original file names of all your removed uploads. This is so Mediafire can find them to fix them. If they've removed a lot of files, this might be a pain in the ass... but it's still necessary.

2. Whether you're submitting a ticket or filing a counterclaim, assure Mediafire of the actual copyright of Sims 2 custom content; this may mean quoting the relevant part of the EULA. Here is the full text of the EULAs for Sims 2 and Sims 3. COPY from there; please don't link to the Booty, it doesn't look professional.
Sims 2:
EA owns all of the rights, title and interest in the Tools & Materials. You may not alter any of EA's trademarks or logos, or alter or remove any of EA's trademark or copyright notices included in or with the Tools & Materials or EA's products. Your right to use Tools & Materials is limited to the license grant above, and you may not otherwise copy, display, distribute, perform, publish, modify, create works from, or use any of the Tools & Materials. Without limiting the preceding sentence, you may not modify, reverse engineer, disassemble, license, transfer, distribute, create works from, or sell the Tool, or use the Tools & Materials to further any commercial or unlawful purpose. Without limiting the foregoing, you may not use the Tools & Materials to promote another product or business, or on any site that operates or promotes a server emulator.

You may include materials created with the Tools & Materials on your personal noncommercial website for the noncommercial benefit of the fan community for EA's products, provided this is beneficial to the product(s) in EA's judgment, and provided that if you do so, you must also post the following notice on your site on the same web page(s) where those materials are located: "This site is not endorsed by or affiliated with Electronic Arts, or its licensors. Trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Game content and materials copyright Electronic Arts Inc. and its licensors. All Rights Reserved." You will not represent that your site is endorsed or approved by or affiliated with EA or our licensors or that any other content on your site is endorsed or approved by or affiliated with EA or our licensors.


This means that all your custom content (anything created using the game (screenshots, pet breeds, lots), Body Shop, Homecrafter, or anything packaged in the .package and .package format is legal property of Electronic Arts, and only EA can send you a cease-and-desist, NOT a fellow user. A fellow user's policy is about as binding as wet toilet paper; following their policy is a matter of politeness, NOT legality.

Sims 3:
4. In exchange for the right to use content contributed by other users through the Software, when you contribute content through the Software, you expressly grant to other users of the Software the non-exclusive, perpetual, transferable, worldwide, irrevocable right to access and use, copy, modify, display, perform, and create and distribute derivative works from, your contributed content in connection with the Software, and to distribute and otherwise communicate your contributed content as a component of works that they create using the Software, for example, The Sims lots or The Sims videos, without further notice, attribution or compensation to you. You hereby waive any moral rights of paternity, publication, reputation, or attribution under applicable law with respect to EA.s and other players. use and enjoyment of such content contributions in connection with the Software.

This means that EA got sick of paysites complaining about pirates and contract-abiding users complaining about paysites, and said they don't care what users do with each other's content so don't come bitching to us. At the very least, you'll need to demonstrate that you know the legality of your right to share custom content for Sims games.

3. Here's the one I didn't think to do, but will if any of my files go down again-- Ask who submitted the copyright complaint. You have a right to know this and Mediafire should tell you. (I thought it was an honest mistake, and the first file that kept going down was complained about by CBS or someone claiming to be CBS.)

4. Thank Mediafire for their time, and be patient about getting a response.

5. DO NOT RE-UPLOAD THE FILES under different names or in a different folder. Wait until Mediafire gets back to you.

I completely respect the choice to move to another free filehost besides Mediafire, but the rash of take-downs lately very likely isn't the fault of any human being at Mediafire. Any file host, free or not, as long as it's based somewhere in the US or just afraid of US copyright law, is vulnerable to false reporting of copyright infringement. They'll all react the same way-- by taking the files down, no questions asked-- because there are too many files to check each and every one and ask the uploader if they're sure they have the legal right to share it.

Date: 2013-01-31 05:05 pm (UTC)
heget: (Default)
From: [personal profile] heget
Hat, your advice- I sent a long reply with quoted EULA and all with the links of the first batch of seven removed files yesterday. And didn't think to save the word document of that complaint.

Just now I got the emails about a new bunch of 8 or so of my files (and I feel thats not the end of it). Am wondering if I should bother to go back, have to look through all my forum posts to find the actual url links to all these files, and try to resend a ticket complaint (and if the ticket complaint should be anything more than "I have explained the issue with my first ticket, but yeah, fradulaent claim")

Because you have a point about the hassle of moving 700+ plus links to a new site. And while my links are proabbly only in the 200-300 range... Honestly it is far less a hassle to upload them to a new site.

(debating whether to make a copy of 'EULA and see I'm not in violation' for every one of my files- and if I should just do it preemptively for every mediafire link I have even if I don't have the email warning yet.)

Date: 2013-01-31 05:36 pm (UTC)
heget: (Default)
From: [personal profile] heget
Yeah, it says on the ticket if its a question of downloading for the URLs of the files that are in question.
I'm going to have to type up and save a form letter of complaint, and just send it out for most of my files.

If it was only one or two of my medifire links with this problem I would be tempted to stay and waiti in out with medifire. But again, the problems of the uploading service, the worst service trying to download, and the sheer amount of files I have to file complaints about these strike downs of copyright violation mean that it is far easier and less stressful for me to move to a new service.

Date: 2013-02-06 06:09 am (UTC)
aquilegia: (Default)
From: [personal profile] aquilegia
Dropping a note here, too -- people who get hit by this should look carefully at the response they get to their ticket, as it may say that you have to contact Mediafire after 10 days. In that case, they won't contact you! I hadn't noticed that on mine until I looked at the e-mail again after I'd had 2 weeks with no reply, but sending a note to Mediafire support got my files put back up pretty quickly.

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All of the content on this blog is for The Sims 2 (and its expansions) unless otherwise noted.

This site is not endorsed by or affiliated with Electronic Arts, or its licensors. Trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Game content and materials copyright Electronic Arts Inc. and its licensors. All Rights Reserved.

This blog is file-share friendly but makes every reasonable effort to respect the terms-of-use of free content creators. (This blog also acknowledges that only EA's TOU counts legally. Disregarding another creator's TOU is rude but not illegal.)

My policy, unless otherwise noted, is 'do whatever you want as long as you credit everyone whose work is involved and don't break their policies.' Usually, someone whose meshes, textures, actions, coding, or templates I've used has 'no paysites' somewhere in their policy, so it's probably a good idea to assume, well, no paysites.
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