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Media companies threatening online game sales - EGDF

Euro developers group also slams ELSPA for failing to help protect against piracy

The European Game Developers Federation has warned developers and publishers of the danger posed by big business interest groups in Brussels, saying they could threaten the freedom of the internet.

Speaking at GCDC in Germany, Fred Hasson and Malte Behrmann both made claims that special interest groups representing big media companies will use issues such as regulation and anti-piracy measures as barriers to any small or medium developer planning to sell games online.

"The freedom of the internet is in danger," commented Behrmann.

"The fact that the internet is free and everybody can just go on the internet and sell his game is not just a given fact... a lot of big players who are losing ground in this context are trying to leverage barriers to entry into the market from the offline world into the online world, one of these leverages is DRM."

"Our position is that for small and medium content producers it is vital that the internet stays free," he added.

Fred Hasson, former CEO of TIGA and current executive director of RedBedlum, agreed further that ELSPA, the UK's publisher's association, had failed in protecting the industry's interests.

"In the UK the publishers' organisations closed part of their piracy unit* because it cost too much money... they make all the noise but they don't do anything about it and they don't help themselves," he added.

* It was originally reported that ELSPA had closed the entire unit, but Fred Hasson contacted to clarify that it was only partly closed.

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