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Activision to Pirates: “Stop. Pretty Please.”

What’s the best way to stop pirates? “Ask nicely,” according to Activision.

According to a story on Venture Beat, the video game publishing giant has been tracking down pirated copies of their highly-anticipated title Call of Duty: Black Ops. Instead of throwing the culprits in the clink, though, Activision has been simply asking the pirates to stop. These methods stand in contrast to the arrest last year of Christian Del Amo, an 18-year old caught raising money to buy and duplicate a pirated copy of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.

Rob Holmes of IP Cybercrime, Activision’s investigation firm, has said that his company has set up several sting operations with owners of Black Ops bootlegs. The pirates are asked to stop selling their copies and how they obtained them, and according to Holmes most have cooperated with their requests.

The Venture Beat article also includes a YouTube video from a pirate who calls himself Computer Healer. In the video, which is divided into four parts, Computer Healer describes how he attempted to buy a copy of Black Ops he found advertised on an online forum, ahead of its Nov. 9 release date. After arranging a deal with the seller, Computer Healer received a call from IP Cybercrime. Computer Healer, who described the instigators as “polite,” was not arrested in exchange for a promise not to leak the game and to return his copy of Black Ops to an IP Cybercrime courier. 

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