Firefall developers Red 5 are going further than simply expressing their denunciation of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) in words. On January 18th, the studio will close the Firefall beta and website for 24 hours in a show of protest. More drastically, the developers are also refusing to show the extremely promising free-to-play multiplayer shooter at E3 this year because of the organiser's support of SOPA. Commendable. More below.
The Entertainment Software Association (ESA), which puts on E3, has stated that the "industry needs effective remedies to address this specific problem, and we support the House and Senate proposals to achieve this objective".
Red 5 call on other studios who have stated their opposition to SOPA to let the ESA know they are "ashamed" that it is backing the act. With big names like Epic having already spoken against the bill it would be interesting to see ESA's response if more anti-SOPA companies pledged to boycott E3 unless they were willing to rethink their stance.
Red 5's statement to Shacknews follows:
"Red 5 Studios is joining Reddit in protest of SOPA by going dark on January 18. We will be taking down our website, community site and Firefall beta for 24 hours on the 18th.
We are extremely disappointed in this misguided legislation. We are also ashamed of the ESA for supporting a bill which is clearly not in the best interests of gamers or the game industry.
This bill, and it's sister bill, Protect IP, will shut down live streaming, shout casting, user generated content and have a chilling effect on game innovation and social media.
Most of all, it hurts the smaller game companies, who will not have the legal resources or lobbying presence to protect themselves from unwarranted shutdown.
We issue a call to all our industry peers, including developers, publishers and game press, to join us in letting the ESA know they do not represent our views on this issue, and strongly oppose SOPA and PIPA."
More on this as it comes of course and here's all our coverage of the SOPA issue to date.