CD Copy Protection Sparks Gaming Furor

The use of physical copyright protection technology on compact disks has again created controversy -- this time creating headaches for retailers and customers of a PC game distributed in Australia by Atari Corp. Atari (formerly Infogrames/Ozisoft) recently released an extension disk to popular PC game

Neverwinter Nights called Shadows of Undrentide. Being an extension to what is already a very popular title, the extension sold well among retailers, with 9,000 units distributed in Australia. Unfortunately for retailers of the extension, many customers took the title home only to find that it either froze their computer or did not work in CD/DVD-ROM drives.

Rob Beaumont, from Adelaide retailer Berlin Wall Software Supermarket, was inundated with complaints from customers after ordering in and selling around 100 copies of the extension. Testing the software on their own PCs, the retailer's staff found that there many, if not most drives would not accept the extension. Atari has attempted to dismiss the problem as a compatibility issue, not a fault, and has therefore issued no product recall. Mark Gilbert, group marketing manager for Atari said retailers made the company aware of the issue one day after release to the market. "The game uses Securom copy protection, which has some compatibility problems with a small number of CD-ROM drives and CD-ROM writers," he said.

News source: GamePro

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