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  1. #151
    Banned Turgid's Avatar
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    A response from Europe - I take your legal eagle's comments on US law with interest - here in the EU and in the UK it would be in breach of the Data Protection Act (they've actively used a method which could make personally identifiable data insecure) and under both the DPA and the recent EU law on Cookies they'd have to openly gain your permission first - have you checked images from EU servers to see if the watermarks are on those?

  2. #152
    Contributor Sendatsu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lunera68 View Post
    I wonder if it still works if you take a screenshot with fraps,
    No, the watermark is not embedded in WoW's graphics. It is only added on top of the screenshots produced by the in-game mechanism.


    Quote Originally Posted by Turgid View Post
    A response from Europe - I take your legal eagle's comments on US law with interest - here in the EU and in the UK it would be in breach of the Data Protection Act (they've actively used a method which could make personally identifiable data insecure) and under both the DPA and the recent EU law on Cookies they'd have to openly gain your permission first - have you checked images from EU servers to see if the watermarks are on those?
    The watermarks appear both in US and EU servers, they have been part of the live client for many years now.

  3. #153
    Sergeant Major Lunera68's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sendatsu View Post
    No, the watermark is not embedded in WoW's graphics. It is only added on top of the screenshots produced by the in-game mechanism.




    The watermarks appear both in US and EU servers, they have been part of the live client for many years now.
    That's what I thought. No need to worry then :P

  4. #154
    Contributor Sendatsu's Avatar
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    The Ask Me Anything chat is open!

    I posted the "question" here: kgkoutzis comments on World of Warcraft Developer AMA

    They don't have to answer my question in specific, as long as they answer someone's question on watermarking.

    Let's see what happens

  5. #155
    Legendary hp94's Avatar
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    I would love to see if this affects Diablo 3 and other recent Blizzard games. I would test this myself but I don't have any Blizzard games any more. All I can offer is rep to someone who tries (whether it is there or not I'd still love to know).

  6. #156
    Active Member
    Authenticator enabled sn4rk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hp94 View Post
    I would love to see if this affects Diablo 3 and other recent Blizzard games. I would test this myself but I don't have any Blizzard games any more. All I can offer is rep to someone who tries (whether it is there or not I'd still love to know).
    Checked screens of diablo 3 and sc2 - don't see any watermarks with using sharpening method or any filter from filters gallery in photoshop cs6
    Last edited by sn4rk; 09-12-2012 at 06:29 AM.

  7. #157
    Contributor CoreCoins User Zomtorg's Avatar
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    I have a question, I've been looking at old screenshots for a plain one and come across this one. IT IS UNEDITED IN ANYWAY but can I see the pattern before I even do anything?

    UNEDITED: http://img88.imageshack.us/img88/495...3011063224.jpg

    After: http://img703.imageshack.us/img703/4...3011063224.jpg

    Any ideas?

  8. #158
    Knight Ariakan's Avatar
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    Whats going on?

  9. #159
    Contributor Sendatsu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zomtorg View Post
    I have a question, I've been looking at old screenshots for a plain one and come across this one. IT IS UNEDITED IN ANYWAY but can I see the pattern before I even do anything?

    UNEDITED: http://img88.imageshack.us/img88/495...3011063224.jpg

    After: http://img703.imageshack.us/img703/4...3011063224.jpg

    Any ideas?
    Yea that's an easy one, open it full screen on an LCD monitor and tilt the screen :P

  10. #160
    Contributor Sendatsu's Avatar
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    Ok so the reddit "ask me anything (that I can answer)" session has ended. They were asked the "watermark" question at least 11 times and they ignored all 11 of them.

    They have been probably told by Blizzard to keep quiet about this until their legal team prepares an official statement (I suppose/hope?).

    (Unless they are just waiting for the whole thing to wear out and be forgotten/go away).

    The most interesting comment I found in the session was by Tom Chilton (lead designer), saying:

    I'll come out and say it. Activision gets an unfair reputation among our players for this, as does Bobby Kotick. We do demos for the Activision executive team about twice per year (sometimes only once). They ask intelligent questions about why we're doing what we're doing, but at no point have any mandates (or even "suggestions") about the game's design been issued.
    Anyway.

  11. #161
    Contributor _Mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sendatsu View Post
    Ok so the reddit "ask me anything (that I can answer)" session has ended. They were asked the "watermark" question at least 11 times and they ignored all 11 of them.
    In their defense they are just game designers. They probably don't even know about this.

  12. #162
    Legendary hp94's Avatar
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    I'm very interested in this thread because I've been looking in to cryptology for a while. If I can get some images of different Blizzard games from some Ownedcore users, I have a cryptanalysis and steganalysis workstation set up in at my college that will get to the bottom of this.

  13. #163
    Member eldavo1's Avatar
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    I have been trying to get a proper watermark out of a normal screenshot (not taken with _Mike's patch) and it just comes up with gibberish... A massive problem with this kind of watermarking is that if even one bit is the wrong color (so black instead of white) then the entire character will be off, unless we use the ECC that comes with it, but I don't have any experience with that (unlike stenography). My program can extract a (broken) watermark out of images now and convert it to something like this (random parts cut out incase it turns out to be decipherable): http://i.imgur.com/EDtkJ.png

    It doesn't use sharpening but uses image levels & curves so no information is lost but still no readable info

  14. #164
    Sergeant Major FattyXP's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 403Forbidden View Post
    For quite a while i suspected this kind of tracking was possible. thank you for researching & proving it to be true!
    +cookies your way

    Edit: To people who do not understand the importance, this shows how Blizzard has possible ways of tracking screenshots to the related accounts even with name/character model / etc censored out. It also provides knowledgeable people with more ways to censor the image to prevent the above from happening.
    It also provides them with somewhat of a way to detect morphing hacks, and ban the accounts using them. As well as anything else that isn't in line with the ToS. Upload that screenshot of your toon with OHack enabled and your named smudged out? BANHAMMAH.

  15. #165
    Sergeant saillaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Turgid View Post
    A response from Europe - I take your legal eagle's comments on US law with interest - here in the EU and in the UK it would be in breach of the Data Protection Act (they've actively used a method which could make personally identifiable data insecure) and under both the DPA and the recent EU law on Cookies they'd have to openly gain your permission first - have you checked images from EU servers to see if the watermarks are on those?
    What is the "personally identifiable data" that they have made secure? I am not familiar with the DPA, but I wonder if any of the data that is view-able, would classify as "personally identifiable data", it doesn't identify anything about you personally. Also, would not the encryption in the images live up to the required level of protection under the law, even if it was in fact "personally identifiable data"?

    I'd be curious to see what "openly gain your permission" requires? Do not the terms of the EULA and TOS achieve that?

    Finally, assuming the above two issues did not fall in Blizzard's favor, wouldn't it still not be a violation of the DPA since it was not Blizzard who has published this information, but rather the end users?

 

 
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