Nintendo is claiming people who exchange save data are infringing its copyright.
Nintendo is concerned about sales of Pokémon save data (in copied, original or modified form) on auction sites, and its Pokémon subsidiary clearly wants what it regards as infringing auctions to be pulled:
“Even by just copying save data using whatever method, and selling it, they’re criminally infringing our copyright.”
Whether a publisher can claim copyright over player saves is legally untested ground, and it is not clear whether Yahoo! Auctions (Japan’s major online auction venue) is willing to go along and ban such auctions.
Japan has recently been tightening its copyright regime to unheard of levels – downloading is banned, “ripping” or format shifting is about to be banned, and police have run amok arresting people for such wicked offences game lending.
Strangely, the profits of major publishers continue to shrink…