I've said this to Slaughter on another board and I will repeat it here. What Fileplanet is doing by distributing X-COM: UFO is illegal
. It doesn't matter if Fileplanet calls it abandonware or if the company has ceased to support the game. The bottom line, and this is copyright law, not just my opinion is that Atari has the rights to the original game and they haven't made it freeware
, which in that case would be possible to freely download and distribute it.
The fact that Atari doesn't care anymore about X-COM doesn't give anyone the legal right to distribute it on their site. Face it people, Atari has
the rights to X-COM, since they paid for them. They can do whatever they want to the series or completely ignore it for as long the copyright stands (50 years). X-COM fans have no
legal right whatsoever to determine what they want to do with the series. And to claim that what Atari is doing with the series is 'immoral', well might be everyone's opinion here but that has no standing in a court of law.
Here's a FAQ
about abandonware explaining exactly that. And here's the Berne Convention
, which is an European treaty regulating copyright law. Or you can look at the U.S. Code
that deals with Copyright.
Now, if you find anything on those laws that mentions or authorizes abandonware, please inform me because I have one fanfic that I've love to try to publish....