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Popular Nintendo DS file-sharing sites close down? Piracy crackdown continues

by Steven Williamson on 26 August 2008, 11:45

Tags: Nintendo DS, Nintendo (TYO:7974), DS

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A number of file-sharing websites, where Nintendo DS ROMS have been freely made available to download, appear to have been suspended or potentially closed down over the past week, sparking rumours that Nintendo has finally got round to cracking down on illegal downloads of software for the handheld.

In recent months, Nintendo has ramped up activity on sniffing out those companies who have been selling the likes of the notorious R4 chip, which allows users to download software from file-sharing site for free to play on their hand-helds. Though there are no official statistics, it's believed that millions of DS owners have bought an R4 chip and are currently playing games illegally. Indeed, at Christmas it became the fifth biggest-selling electronics item on Amazon's UK web store.

In the past week, two of the most popular file-sharing sites now lead to blank pages and rumours are spreading through forums of other file-sharing sites that it could be the work of the Nintendo lawyers.

Nintendo has a massive battle on its hands if it hopes to get rid of the R4 and similar chips, which aren't actually considered to be illegal devices.

"It's the purposes that people use it for that's often illegal," says Rob Saunders, a spokesman for Nintendo UK. "When you fill a memory card with hundreds of downloaded games - that's theft."

The two websites that are now offline are just a small drop in the ocean of file-sharing sites out there. It's going to take some time before Nintendo sees the end of illegal DS software downloads.


HEXUS Forums :: 1 Comment

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I wonder if this crackdown will have unintended outcomes. Before this article I was completely unaware of the “r4 chip” let alone the possibility of pirating DS games. If this news makes the mainstream press, sure as night, the number of owners contemplating/committing piracy will increase.