Well it happened. Nintendo of America has reached an agreement with the owners of LoveROMS.com and LoveRETRO.com regarding the copyright infringement lawsuit against both sites. Both parties have agreed to a final judgment in Nintendo’s favor to well just over $12 million.
Jacob and Cristian Mathias, the owners of both sites have been fighting the case since July after Nintendo filed the lawsuit against the owners citing that they have been distributing a vast library of unauthorised copies of video games contained within the site. which “infringes and threatens irreparable injury to Nintendo’s intellectual property rights.”
The original report on TorrentFreak advises that the suit did not go to trial, but that both parties agreed upon a consent judgment and a permanent injunction after the couple admitted to both direct and indirect copyright infringement. The judgment prohibits them from using, sharing, or distributing Nintendo ROMs or other materials again in the future, and requires them to both provide Nintendo with all games, game files, and emulators in their custody and hand both domain names over to the company. In addition, they must pay Nintendo $12.23 million.
As with torrent sites and warez sites of old, it’s more than likely this figure is a public deterrent rather than the actual one that has been private one given to the couple. One things for sure though, the legality regarding rom ownership will be one that’ll be questioned for years to come until a service that allows our classic games to be played on new systems with minimal fuss (at a convenient price) enters the market.
Let’s hope its sooner rather than later..