Although it has not put the issue in quite such stark terms, Public Knowledge is essentially seeking a ruling that says that the sale of consumer software is, in most circumstances, a sale, pretty much regardless of what the agreement that comes with the software says. If the court agrees in spite of MAI and its progeny (and the ruling survives certain appeal) then U.S. copyright law would protect, among other things, making copies of purchased software in RAM in order to use the software — no matter what the “license agreement” says. Resolving this issue in favor of Public Knowledge would call into question provisions in EULAs governing nearly every virtual world and multiuser online game, as well as EULAs for other software.
As part of the ongoing raking over the coals of Richard Bartle for saying the obvious (yes, you can tell what side I am on in those debates!), Steve Danuser says over at Moorgard.com » Sacred Cows
I get tired of people implying that today’s MMOs owe their entire existence to the MUDs of yesteryear. Sorry, I disagree. The gameplay style of EQ or WoW is obviously influenced by MUDs, but I propose that MMOs would have evolved anyway.
And Ryan Shwayder posts in comments saying
Ultima Online is a direct descendant of what MUD? I’m not saying it isn’t, I’m just saying that I don’t know what particular MUD had a profound influence on that game. It seems like the MMO industry was born of different influences; EverQuest from DikiMuds, Ultima Online from Ultima games. Not all MMOs have a lot of direct comparisons to MUDs, so I think he’s right that they’d exist whether MUDs did or not.
- Number of users in Habbo Hotel worldwide: 20,000,000
- “Hottest” book in the US last year according to Time Magazine: 1,500,000+. (A Thousand Splendid Suns)
- Best-selling graphic novel in the US last year: 80,000. (Naruto)
- Digital sales of a hit song: 2,100,000 (Leona Lewis, “Bleeding Love”)
- Average downloads of a downloadable Rock Band track: 100,000
- Viewers of the #1 show on US TV (including DVR): 28,800,000 (American Idol)
- Viewers of the #150 show on US TV: 2,400,000 (Gossip Girl)
- Users of World of Warcraft in North America: 2,500,000
- Monthly uniques for Gaia Online: 2,000,000+
- Total number of movie tickets sold in the US in one year: 1,400,000,000
- Estimated tickets sold to the new Indiana Jones movie in five weeks: 42,290,849 (using 2007 average US ticket price and grosses to date).
Just some figures that caught my eye while browsing a few different publications…
Sulka Haro just forwarded along a press release stating that Habbo has reached 100m registered users worldwide. For those counting, that means 1.5% of the population of the planet.
Some more stats gleaned from the release:
- They get around 10m monthly uniques, apparently.
- 20m registered in the last six months
- 50/50 gender split
- 70% 13-16 years old
- 64% visit daily (which is higher than my usual rule of thumb of “half” — I usually use 2/3 for the week, not the day).