Destiny 2 Twitch streamer hacking lawsuit can go forward, court says
A Destiny 2 Twitch streamer hacking lawsuit can go forward, a court has determined, after the player allegedly showed themselves using hacks and circumventing account bans in the FPS game while streaming on the popular Amazon-owned platform. Although the judge in the Washington court ruled Bungie hadn’t met the criteria for some counts and granted an opportunity for the Destiny 2 developer to amend its complaint, it agreed that the defendant, who was a minor at the time they allegedly committed the offences, failed to raise adequate defences against many of Bungie’s claims that would warrant the defendant’s Motion to Dismiss.
The defendant, known simply as L.L. due to his status as a minor at the time of the actions, allegedly streamed himself using cheat software, making new accounts in violation of Bungie’s terms of service, and eventually tweeted threats of ‘arson’ and ‘death’ alongside the name of a Bungie employee. L.L. also allegedly sold digital emblems on third-party platforms without authorisation.
Prompted by the threats, Bungie moved into action in July 2022, filing claims related to “unauthorised derivative work” via modding tools, violations of the DMCA’s anti-circumvention provisions, and fraud under Bungie’s Limited Software License Agreement (LSLA) due to L.L.’s multiple account creations agreeing to the terms without any intent to follow them.
The defendant sought a motion to dismiss, claiming that cheating is not unlawful and that the teen was apparently making fun of Bungie’s supposedly ineffective cheat prevention mechanisms. L.L. also contended that, as a minor, they had a right to disaffirm any contracts as null and void within a reasonable time of becoming an adult and that they had already done so.
Bungie allowed the court to dismiss the LSLA claims, then modified its case to assert that without the license in place, he engaged in copyright infringement every time he downloaded and played the game. In another filing, Bungie pointed to a case in which the court addressed the law around the circumvention of technological measures that provide access to a copyrighted work.
In this most recent ruling, the court dismissed Bungie’s breach of contract claims as Bungie had already addressed the LSLA could be considered void. However, the claims of fraud related to the LSLA due to L.L.’s alleged lack of intention to submit to the rules were not dismissed.
The judge then found Bungie’s copyright infringement claims “persuasive” regarding the claims of L.L. creating unauthorised derivative works.
The judge also shared that the anti-circumvention claims could move forward as L.L.’s Motion to Dismiss amounts to a narrow reading of the D.M.C.A.
However, regarding the emblem sales, the court granted L.L.’s Motion to Dismiss because Bungie failed to prove all necessary aspects of its claim under the Washington Consumer Protection Act, which requires a defendant’s conduct is “of public interest.” However, Bungie will have the opportunity to amend its complaint to address this issue, TorrentFreak shares.
This is just the latest in a series of major moves by Bungie to penalise cheaters and face hacking and cheating sites head-on, such as a recent decision amounting to $12 million against a cheat maker in a default judgment. The game development studio is also taking on a major lawsuit against a person who allegedly falsely implemented strikes against Bungie’s own channel and some popular Destiny 2 YouTubers via the D.M.C.A.
Together, these cases prove that Bungie is the wrong company to mess with when it comes to such wrongdoing, setting a strong precedent within the broader gaming community.
Destiny 2 season 21 is just around the corner. But, before the new season, players still have time to snag all the latest Destiny 2 Lightfall Exotics so they can be adequately prepared for the multiplayer game‘s trip into the depths of Titan.