Gears Of War Leakers Already Losing Xbox One Access


You know what may be the dumbest thing to do, legally, while you are actively engaged with a non-disclosure agreement? Disclose exactly what you’re doing. It’s essentially all you’re being asked not to do. That’s why it is of no surprise that Microsoft is coming down on those who leaked the existence of Gears of War on Xbox One before they could officially announce its HD remastering. As Kotaku reports, the form of punishment comes in the manner of Microsoft locking said leakers out of usage for their Xbox One’s, which is to be unlocked only at Microsoft’s discretion in the future.

“The nature of the leak having had occurred through Xbox One, actually also went against the Microsoft EULA, which is agreed upon when creating an Xbox LIVE account, or any other type of Microsoft account,” VMC (the company which provided Microsoft with testers for Gears of War on Xbox One) informed their contractors in an email. “This being said, as per that agreement with the testers in fault, Microsoft also permanently disabled their Xbox LIVE accounts (as well as other suspected accounts present on their Xbox One kits) and temporarily blocked all of their Xbox One privileges – meaning that for a period of time which Microsoft decides on depending on the severity of the offense, their Xbox One is entirely unusable.”

While it is generally frightening that Microsoft can effectively flip a kill switch for an Xbox One remotely through the console itself, it’s outlandishly frustrating to hear people get up in arms that Microsoft acted in such a way towards these Gears of War leakers. While it’s near impossible to actually view a non-disclosure agreement as a third-party observing this situation (seeing, again, how the point of an NDA is not to disclose it), the loss of access for an Xbox One is pennies on the dollar of a much harsher punishment, including severe litigation and the difficulty in finding another job in the video games industry ever again.

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Leaks like this can take substantial effects on the bottom line for a company. It sucks (for Microsoft) that revealing a Gears of War remaster during their E3 2015 media briefing won’t have the same effect as though it was a surprise in the minds of audience members around the world. E3 and gaming events like it are marketing-paloozas, and removing the effectiveness of translating hype into pre-orders does take its toll on the company. Even though it’s better for the consumer that the industry doesn’t act so secretive about its projects like they’re protecting the holy grail of games, Microsoft is completely justified in turning an Xbox One into a $500 brick if the alternative is much more in fines, lawsuits and paying lawyers.

Long story short; if you’re legally obliged to keep a secret, you better make sure it stays one!

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