[stella] Are 7800 demos legal???

Subject: [stella] Are 7800 demos legal???
From: "John Saeger" <john@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 23 Nov 1999 12:22:41 -0800
As you may have guessed Eckhard Stolberg and myself have been working on
some 7800 stuff lately.  We'll be publishing more stuff soon, but one thing
we are wondering about is the 7800 demo that circumvents the 7800
encryption.  The way it works is to extract a 4KB section of code from the
Atari Development Card which passes encryption, then use jumps out of the
code or the original startup and interrupt vectors, but with new demo or
game code instead of the code in the original Dev Card.

The question is, is this demo legal, and is it O.K. to publish these kinds
of demos on this list?

Personally, I think it's perfectly legal.  Although it infringes on Atari
copyright, sometimes copyright infringement is legal.  I think there is a
court case where Sega tried to sue a third party developer for infringement,
but the game developer only copied the code that was required to be
compatible with the console.  The judge said this is O.K.  I guess
otherwise, Atari would be using a monopoly in the console manufacturing
business to build a monopoly in the game business.  Maybe this is an illegal
tie-in and a violation of anti-trust law.  But I'm not a lawyer.  Any

Of course we already know that Hasbro has declared their old consoles to be
open systems and they really don't care one way or the other.  So probably
it's a moot point anyway.  But we wouldn't want to be accidently posting
things to this list that Glenn considers to be illegal.

BTW, does anybody know where to find Hasbro's official policy on old


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