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Arthmoor

My View on Mod Packs

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27 minutes ago, layton452 said:

I registered to voice my opinion because I hold an alternative view to some of the commenters here, particularly on what Wabbajack can achieve, and wanted to discuss it. Just because I am not an established member here it does not mean that my opinion is invalidated. I know you didn't say this, but you seem to be inviting that consensus.

I also think its healthy to have critical discussion around an issue with a range of opinions in discussion. (although I wouldn't agree with the manner in which crest seems to be pursuing it). 

I am an old basketball player.  I learned a long time ago that all of the flapping arms and bobbing head and game talk were just so much distraction.  I learned to not pay attention to all the noise and distractions.  I learned to follow the navel. 

Now, your mouth says one thing, but alas your navel makes all that just so much noise.  You have not addressed issues, you have attacked people; including me and one other directly in the quoted comment.  I invited people to question your motives.  Your actions have made my question moot. 

 

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1 minute ago, The Black Swan said:

I am an old basketball player.  I learned a long time ago that all of the flapping arms and bobbing head and game talk were just so much distraction.  I learned to not pay attention to all the noise and distractions.  I learned to follow the navel. 

Now, your mouth says one thing, but alas your navel makes all that just so much noise.  You have not addressed issues, you have attacked people; including me and one other directly in the quoted comment.  I invited people to question your motives.  Your actions have made my question moot. 

 

I have addressed the issues that I came here to address. I do agree with many of the points made, but I decided to focus on those in which I had a difference in opinion. 

I have not attacked anyone. Firstly, I questioned why you might want to raise the subject of user freshness to this community instead of judging them on the merit of what they have to say. Secondly, I mentioned that I disagreed of crest's methods of discussion (again, this was not an attack). It was my interpretation of your question that you thought I had come here and solely posted in this forum to inflame the issue surrounding modpacks.  I'll admit, maybe I came to the wrong assumption on what you were implying - and I apologise for doing so. But now I ask you: why raise this sort of pointed question, particularly on one subset of users, if you are not intending to lead people to an interpretation that is along this line of thinking? I acknowledged here that it would be wrong for me to attribute to you an opinion that is not your own ("I know you didn't say this"), so now I would like to know what your thinking was when you brought this up.

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13 minutes ago, layton452 said:

The mod downloaded is the original mod, the edits are then applied locally on the user's machine. Once uploaded to the Nexus, the default license is that users may freely do with the files as they wish on their own machines. The only stipulations on this being not allowed depend on the permissions set by the mod author themselves. In the sister thread to this in this forum, halgari and Arthmoor discuss an opt out feature for modification for authors which wish for their mods to be undisturbed.

 

Thanks for that post!  As I have stated, I am not familiar with the workings of Wabbajack.  I have simply stated my concerns as regards the editing involved by those making modlists.  Unfortunately, all to often - as can be seen in the quality of mods uploaded to Nexus and in the comments made in the Steam forums, that competency and knowledge necessary to produce a well functioning product, simply isn't there.

 

There ideally should be some sort of screening or competency requirement before modlsts are posted, with those not meeting the requirements not be allowed.  Frankly, I feel there should be a similar requirement for Nexus, given the number of mods that are poorly made, or don't work, or are just downright dangerous.

And, an opt-out option is, to me, essential.  Mods are intellectual property, and their creators should have final say over how they are used.

 

If all these things can be satisfied, Wabbajack may be something good.  But I think people really need to distinguish the difference between a modpack like the infamous and illegal "Journey" modpack, and one that meets all permissions and quality levels necessary for safe, stable, and legal use of all the mods contained therein.

 

Time for me to take a break.  Pleasure discussing this with you, layton!

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Crest, you need to dial it back. You won't be winning any hearts and minds by trying to play the roll of a pit bull and intimidating people in this thread by yelling and screaming about how people don't know what they're talking about.

You should instead consider that veterans of modding are laying out their case and it should be given weight because we've been down this road before several times and it never ends well for anyone, but most especially never ends well for the pack compilers.

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On 9/29/2019 at 7:43 PM, Arthmoor said:

Author Engagement

One of the biggest reasons many authors release their mods to the public is the engagement they get with their users. Communities can form around certain mods, the author and their users may generate a rapport with each other and come to build friendships outside of the mod itself. There are even examples of where the users and mod authors of certain things have gotten together for real world meet ups. None of which would be possible if people are never directed to where the authors choose to foster this kind of community engagement. The blind downloading of mods in a modpack makes that very unlikely, and in some cases it's not possible at all because the modpack doesn't tell anyone who made the stuff that's in in.

Mod Page Engagement

Mod are about more than just downloading files and running off to play. They always have been. Part of being able to properly set up a load order involves the need to view a mod's description page and its other documentation. There could be some quirky known issues that might come up. There may be some special instructions needed to make the mod work properly that have to be done after it's been installed. Mod pages may have special compatibility information about using them with other mods. There may be modular setups available to make the mod work in different ways depending on what the author provides and/or the users wanted. None of this information is delivered at all to a user installing all of their mods using a modpack. This will lead to problems they won't know how to solve and ultimately only causes more frustration.

Author Recognition

This flows from the first two issues. Modpacks promote the marginalization of mod authors by allowing people to skip over who made the content and thus who to give praise to, etc. When the authors of mods become faceless unknowns, the community is then more able to treat mods themselves as worthless commodities that should always be available for free and without restrictions. Some mod authors will lose out on extra money they bring in through Patreon or Paypal donations as well as modpacks will not display this information to their users. None of the prompts for this purpose are displayed. Not even the endorsement prompt is given, and even Nexus itself appears ready to devalue this for no apparent reason. Granted, not all authors care that much about endorsements (ie: I don't) but not even getting that possibility seems like an unnecessary slap in everyone's faces.

Support and Bug Reports

Let's face it. At some point someone is going to go looking for help. When a users has downloaded their stuff directly from the pages, they're more likely to know where to go when Mod X misbehaves or has a bug. With modpacks, this is no longer the case and they'll be much more likely to pick something at random and go to them based on the assumption that we all know what mods are in what packs. When users don't know who to contact it raises the chances significantly of them filing reports in the wrong places, or for the wrong reasons. Modpack makers will not be able to correctly deal with this without having to become virtual gurus, which is unlikely to be the case. So they'll have little incentive for taking on the burden of diagnosing issues and are likely to instead pass this burden along to us - the authors.

Compatibility, and Stability

Modpacks lay claim to the ability to put an end to compatibility and stability issues. This is unfortunately not true in any way though. Especially for any game older than Skyrim Special Edition. The idea that 200+ mods can just be grabbed and put into a package and expected to work together for any of these older games is wishful thinking. Those engines simply don't have the ability to handle the content load due to restrictions on how 32-bit programs work. People are going to assume that someone who puts 200 mods into the package is also guaranteeing that this issue won't take place but they can't, and chances are that instead of the modpack maker taking the blame it'll be passed on to mod authors in some way. Even with games like SSE or Fallout 4 it's not always possible to have a giant list of mods work right when put together depending on exactly what they're doing. There are also a huge number of dirty mods with bad edits and things like deleted navmeshes that require manual intervention. No automated install system can deal with this without encouraging the unwanted modification of an author's files.

There are also issues with games that don't have official modding tools at all, such as Mass Effect, or that have inadequate tools for the job like the Witcher series. In both of these cases it is often necessary for mods to make direct edits to base game files which then leads to the paradox of not being able to install multiple mods into the game. These are technical limitations with these game engines that cannot be overcome by the use of modpacks. So it simply becomes impossible to force the issue. A system built around the idea that this is impossible needs to be able to take this into consideration and either block modpacks entirely, or allow authors of mods for such games the ability to hard opt-out of it if they know their mod could never work in a package.

Legal issues will also get in the way of a properly functioning modpack. Let's take as an example, my own load order. Wrye Bash currently shows it to be approximately 150 mods. It covers a wide range of things, centered around my village mods and Open Cities. This load order is not especially difficult to assemble, but it is also not possible to distribute as-is due to the presence of several compatibility patches and at least one actual mod I've modified for personal use. Despite my having the appropriate level of skill to actually build this modpack and set it up for others to use, it would not be legal to actually do so since it would have to include those files I can't distribute.

So why not just leave those parts out of the modpack then, right? The problem with that is that it's now a package that's no longer possible to run cohesively because the necessary "glue" is missing. It would no longer be composed of a well crafted set of completely compatible and stable mods. Which is why this kind of thing simply isn't feasible. My load order is certainly not going to be some exception to the rule either. Many of us will have done the same sort of thing and some guides that have been converted into modpacks are already including files they're not legally allowed to distribute.

Demands for Modpack Compatibility

At some point, users may find your mod and want it in the modpack too. This is likely to lead to demands from others that your mod somehow be made to work with this modpack even if you have no interest in modpacks at all. Other user communities such as reddit and Steam are already seeing posts from users demanding that some mod author alter their work so that it'll fit into Ultimate Skyrim. Sometimes up to and including openly asking someone else to illegally modify their work to make it happen, even after the author has said no. This is a situation that should never take place in a properly run community. If a mod author doesn't want to be involved, leave them alone. If they don't want their work included in some way, that desire needs to be respected.

Homogeneous Community

Another thing modpacks promote is the consolidation of mods around a select group. For Bethesda games this would likely start from the top 100 list on Nexus and if we're lucky may extend outward to 1000 or so. At some point if modpacks continue to be pushed as "the way of the future" then that future will be one where there's 1000 or so mods in use and any others getting published are ignored regardless of their quality level. Diversity in modding will be reduced to nothing since everyone is now running one of the 5 modpacks that ends up dominating the landscape.

If you don't think this won't happen, have a look at what happened with Minecraft. Prior to about 2014 or so, the Minecraft community was large, vibrant, and thriving. Numerous authors had quality mods being released. Then the movement toward modpacks began and in very short order, mod authors who wanted nothing to do with them were driven out of the community. Now, when looking for discussion of mods for Minecraft, one runs into basically "Feed the Beast" or "Better Than Wolves" and indications are both of these are bitter rivals of each other.

Discourages Learning

Part of the process in modding is learning how the game works and what can and can't be done with it. For the last 15 years we've enjoyed a steady growth in the number of mod authors who started off as users, primarily because they were able to engage the process directly and learn from it and eventually become proficient with the CK. When modpacks are the rule of the day, this learning is discouraged in favor of a "click click click" mentality. Since it removes all of the interaction points previously mentioned, it results in far fewer people becoming mod authors due to the absence of engagement with the process and leads to the homogeneous community issue through basic attrition as the existing pool of mod authors leaves the scene voluntarily or are driven out.

A Solution?

All of the various things mentioned here will tend toward a community that doesn't respect the contributions of mod authors, their rights, or bringing in new people to write new material. So what's the solution to these problems? It's surprisingly simple and goes hand in hand with one of the central philosophies of modding: Choice. Provide a choice to mod authors on whether or not they want their work in mod packs. The easiest way to accomplish this is for Nexus Mods to alter their API in order to allow mod authors to check a box to opt-out of any such system. The next option, while more difficult to implement, would be to get makers of the various modpacking tools to write code to support a community opt-out standard that can be added to their mod descriptions. Something simple like a tag: [ModPacks: NO] or [ModPacks: YES]. If a mod is found to contain one of these tags the tool can act accordingly. The bottom line here though is that authors should be given the choice. Users are not the only people entitled to that.

If market forces should become such that choosing to opt-out has a negative effect on a particular author, they can always choose to change their stance. In this way, everyone should be happy since everyone gets to choose.

Firstly thanks for laying out your thoughts here Arthmoor. I agree with some of your points: noticeably around mod pages and support. It is inevitable that under this system the interaction with mod author pages will change, and yes, users will unfortunately come for support when they should go to the modlist editor. This isn't really any different from how they do now, since many users follow guides, ignore mod pages, and then come to the mods themselves for support - a lot of the time, the mod they think is wrong isn't the issue. The difference with modlist installers is volume, which I can appreciate as a concern but one the modlist community is actively trying to temper by directing them to modlist support channels. 

Regarding compatibility and specifically distribution of patches, this isn't really an issue until you add an opt-out of download feature. It is perfectly viable for a user to download a publicly uploaded mod in the way they see fit, be it manual clicking or an automated server WGET - that's a user choice. As it stands, since the patches are downloaded from official sources, this is not illegal distribution. Manual edits (e.g. xEdit) are indeed trickier, but are only limited by the mods that opt out of modification. If they do opt out of modification, it just puts the same task of manual editing onto the user directly instead of Wabbajack. 

I would say your interpretation of Minecraft modding is slightly different to how it currently stands as well. Yes, there are big packs and makers like Feed the Beast, but for each FTB pack there are dozens of alternatives made by smaller creators, with smaller more niche mods that need exposure. Want Pokemon in Minecraft? Here's a curated pack for it. How about a pack themed around exploration, archaeology and culture? There is another pack for it. Sure they aren't the most popular, but the diversity is out there and for the benefit of everyone, and that's what Wabbajack can bring.

With discouraging learning, I think this depends on the user that you are trying to appeal to. Wabbajack is not primarily aimed at the guy who likes to tinker meticulously in xEdit or the CS (as a lot of us do!). Wabbajack is for the user who follows the curated guides like Lexy without deviation, or even the new user who wants to try out a modded setup for the first time. In the latter case, no learning is lost since they weren't here in the first place. Wabbajack could even be a springboard to get these new users into the community in which they then start to get a grip on the tools and experiment themselves.

Lastly, with the solution. Opting out of mod packs as a whole is impossible, since users will just manually download them and stick them in their installed mod pack setups anyway. So we have two real options - opting out of downloads and opting out of modification. From a mod author perspective, opting out of downloads does address the issues they have. But from a user perspective, that will simply make a modpack tool useless, and therefore detriments the community of users. Say a big mod opts out of downloads. If it's used for the basis of all the big guides, it would add needless complication. It just puts burden on the user having to download manually and insert each of these mods so that they can then run the curated setup as intended. Besides, this is not within the remit of the author to control, as the user can dictate how they download a file form an official source. 

That's why I think opting out of modification in Wabbajack is the perfect middle ground. If a mod pack author opts out, they can be sure that any errorsome edits that users have made to the mod have been made by users themselves. This leaves them in the same position of supporting users who have followed guides or have their own setups, as is the status quo now. On the other hand, this does not harm users much. They can still automate all the downloads they need, and any post installation tweaks they need to make can be guided but are on them, not automated. They are responsible. And if they followed instructions to do this, they are more likely to consult the author of the instructions as opposed to the mod author for support (same as with modding guides - Lexy has a huge discord support channel that sees regular activity.) 

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16 hours ago, layton452 said:

I have addressed the issues that I came here to address. I do agree with many of the points made, but I decided to focus on those in which I had a difference in opinion. 

I have not attacked anyone. Firstly, I questioned why you might want to raise the subject of user freshness to this community instead of judging them on the merit of what they have to say. Secondly, I mentioned that I disagreed of crest's methods of discussion (again, this was not an attack). It was my interpretation of your question that you thought I had come here and solely posted in this forum to inflame the issue surrounding modpacks.  I'll admit, maybe I came to the wrong assumption on what you were implying - and I apologise for doing so. But now I ask you: why raise this sort of pointed question, particularly on one subset of users, if you are not intending to lead people to an interpretation that is along this line of thinking? I acknowledged here that it would be wrong for me to attribute to you an opinion that is not your own ("I know you didn't say this"), so now I would like to know what your thinking was when you brought this up.

Any derogatory, belittling, dismissive or demeaning comment directed at an individual or made about an individual is a personal.  When done aggressively, it is an attack.

"(although I wouldn't agree with the manner in which crest seems to be pursuing it)" is a spurious and directed comment which is meant to demean someone else. 

"Just because I am not an established member here it does not mean that my opinion is invalidated. I know you didn't say this, but you seem to be inviting that consensus."  (underscores are mine) Is meant to belittle me and dismiss my question.

And now you try to negate or mitigate those comments with "I acknowledged here that it would be wrong for me to attribute to you an opinion that is not your own ("I know you didn't say this"),".  You're correct, it was wrong.  And this quoted comment is a blatant attempt to twist your attacks and shift the blame for your actions to your victims.

Now, I will say it again.  I questioned your motives.  Just I question the motives of anyone who shows up unannounced and uninvited and starts telling me/us how wrong I am/we are and then aggressively endeavors to convert me/us to their way of thinking. 

Now, my question, why did you choose to take umbrage with my question?  Why were you compelled to defend yourself when the question was not addressed to you and was only obliquely related to you as one of three.  You CHOOSE to comment on my question and aggressively attempt to marginalize both the question and myself.

One last thought.  My concern isn't about your opinions or anyone else's.  ALL opinions are invalid as opinions are nothing more structured ignorance.  Opinions do not measure up to anyone else's knowledge. Opinions do not measure up to someone else's facts.  If you are desirous to convert others to your way of thinking, come armed with demonstrable facts and knowledge and not opinions.  What's that old saw?  "Opinions are like anuses, everybody has one and the vast majority are full shit".

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8 hours ago, The Black Swan said:

Any derogatory, belittling, dismissive or demeaning comment directed at an individual or made about an individual is a personal.  When done aggressively, it is an attack.

"(although I wouldn't agree with the manner in which crest seems to be pursuing it)" is a spurious and directed comment which is meant to demean someone else. 

"Just because I am not an established member here it does not mean that my opinion is invalidated. I know you didn't say this, but you seem to be inviting that consensus."  (underscores are mine) Is meant to belittle me and dismiss my question.

And now you try to negate or mitigate those comments with "I acknowledged here that it would be wrong for me to attribute to you an opinion that is not your own ("I know you didn't say this"),".  You're correct, it was wrong.  And this quoted comment is a blatant attempt to twist your attacks and shift the blame for your actions to your victims.

Now, I will say it again.  I questioned your motives.  Just I question the motives of anyone who shows up unannounced and uninvited and starts telling me/us how wrong I am/we are and then aggressively endeavors to convert me/us to their way of thinking. 

Now, my question, why did you choose to take umbrage with my question?  Why were you compelled to defend yourself when the question was not addressed to you and was only obliquely related to you as one of three.  You CHOOSE to comment on my question and aggressively attempt to marginalize both the question and myself.

One last thought.  My concern isn't about your opinions or anyone else's.  ALL opinions are invalid as opinions are nothing more structured ignorance.  Opinions do not measure up to anyone else's knowledge. Opinions do not measure up to someone else's facts.  If you are desirous to convert others to your way of thinking, come armed with demonstrable facts and knowledge and not opinions.  What's that old saw?  "Opinions are like anuses, everybody has one and the vast majority are full shit".

 

My comments are more matter of fact than that - I am not speaking in tongues or in a manipulative manner. I said that I did not agree with crest's methods because, in honesty, I did not. Nothing further - I wasn't trying to belittle him. In the same manner, I said that you seemed to be inviting that consensus not to belittle you, but because to me, it did seem like you were questioning us on the basis of our freshness here. I do not want to pull anyone down and I regret if that is how I have come across. 

I admit that I was not the sole target of your question, but I am not here as a missionary - nor would it matter if I was, because this is a public post - nobody has to be invited to have the capacity to speak on a matter. Rather, all I wanted to do was offer an alternative viewpoint, so that anyone reading this topic can appreciate a balanced perspective both from the points that Arthmoor and others make and the views that differ from theirs. My criticism of the question was not an attempt to marginalise you, but rather an attempt to defend my right to post an alternative view here.

I am sorry if that came across abrasively.

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4 minutes ago, layton452 said:

 

My comments are more matter of fact than that - I am not speaking in tongues or in a manipulative manner. I said that I did not agree with crest's methods because, in honesty, I did not. Nothing further - I wasn't trying to belittle him. In the same manner, I said that you seemed to be inviting that consensus not to belittle you, but because to me, it did seem like you were questioning me on the basis of my freshness here. I do not want to pull anyone down and I regret if that is how I have come across. 

I admit that I was not the sole target of your question, but I am not here as a missionary - nor would it matter if I was, because this is a public post - nobody has to be invited to have the capacity to speak on a matter. Rather, all I wanted to do was offer an alternative viewpoint, so that anyone reading this topic can appreciate a balanced perspective both from the points that Arthmoor and others make and the views that differ from theirs. My criticism of the question was not an attempt to marginalise you, but rather an attempt to defend my right to post an alternative view here.

I am sorry if that came across abrasively.

"I am sorry if that came across abrasively".

Herein lies our difference. 

You did not "come across" as abrasive.  From this chair, you were deliberately confrontory and abrasive in an effort to intimidate and marginalize others.  You say not, but the old basketball player sees otherwise.  If for no other reason than you were aggressively demeaning more than once, and to more than one person.   

Now, for the sake of this forum, I shall leave it for others to make judgment.  I have said my piece and you have made your denials. 

Further, this respondent sayeth naught. 

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I must remind everyone that inflammatory remarks, including accusation of bad faith, are strictly prohibited here. So is fighting.

I suggest all participants reflect on this and ask themselves if their posts require editing.

This is generally a quiet forum so it would be a shame if the Administrators felt compelled to begin active moderation.

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25 minutes ago, Sigurð Stormhanð said:

I must remind everyone that inflammatory remarks, including accusation of bad faith, are strictly prohibited here. So is fighting.

I suggest all participants reflect on this and ask themselves if their posts require editing.

This is generally a quiet forum so it would be a shame if the Administrators felt compelled to begin active moderation.

That I shall do. I do regret the way in which this conversation unfolded, above all else. 

Either way there shall be no more contention from me, only discussion of the topic at hand. 

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A Solution?

All of the various things mentioned here will tend toward a community that doesn't respect the contributions of mod authors, their rights, or bringing in new people to write new material. So what's the solution to these problems? It's surprisingly simple and goes hand in hand with one of the central philosophies of modding: Choice. Provide a choice to mod authors on whether or not they want their work in mod packs. The easiest way to accomplish this is for Nexus Mods to alter their API in order to allow mod authors to check a box to opt-out of any such system. The next option, while more difficult to implement, would be to get makers of the various modpacking tools to write code to support a community opt-out standard that can be added to their mod descriptions. Something simple like a tag: [ModPacks: NO] or [ModPacks: YES]. If a mod is found to contain one of these tags the tool can act accordingly. The bottom line here though is that authors should be given the choice. Users are not the only people entitled to that.

You want a solution where mod authors rights are respected, and you propose that Nexus Mods or modpacking tool authors make changes to allow mod authors to opt out.

"It's surprisingly simple". But getting third parties to respect and act on your wishes is not always that simple! Especially Nexus - they want users to download more, to use modpacks, and to buy Premium Nexus membership which increases their revenue - that is their business model.

There is a more direct solution which you can implement yourself by using a pre-existing system which allows creative authors to communicate which rights they reserve and which rights they waive for the use of their creative works - copyright. Write your own copyright license (or use or modify an existing license) to define which rights you allow for the use of your mods.

Creative Commons, for example, has a suite of licenses that you can look at for ideas. Here's a few Creative Commons licenses as examples:

CC BY  Attribution - must credit the author

CC SA  Share-Alike - derivative work must use a license identical ("not more restrictive") to the license that governs the original work.

CC NC  Non-commercial - can only use mod for non-commercial purposes

You might be able to take one of these licenses and add an additional "No-modpack/No-modlist" clause, similar to the "Non-commercial" clause.

Then Nexus Mods and modpacking tools would be required to respect your copyright and opt the mod out of modpacks.

Note: These are just my thoughts. I'm not a lawyer, nor a copyright expert.

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@qodaki I've already adopted that solution and my licensing forbids the use of my work in modpacks. Nexus is proposing a system where this wish will be ignored. Other modpack systems are doing the same. So it's not as easy as you might think, and even using one of those so-called friendly licenses (for mods they're anything but friendly) isn't going to change that. Which is why we as mod authors need to let them know it's not ok to ignore our copyright like this.

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The truly simple solution is for people to respect the rights of the content creators.  Unfortunately, all the legal jargon in the world will not fix people whose moral compass points towards theft of intellectual property. 

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On 9/30/2019 at 3:06 AM, crest said:

- OK, so if users are properly advised to visit the mod's Nexus page, then all is good.  In itself, this isn't an argument against mod packs.  In fact, you may be forgetting a whole other side of your concern - that mod packs may increase traffic on your page (certainly number of downloads). So unless you have actual data to support your claim that mod packs have that effect on you, this is a moot point.

If you consider that to be a moot point then you have a lot to learn what a modding community is all about.  Besides, Arthmoor doesn't need to prove anything.

But you need to convince a lot of people of why mod packs are better than mod managers just becasue some people are too lazy to learn how a mod manager really works.

You know, your post reminds me about what I said to a guy here when he wanted to know some basics about modding.

On 9/30/2019 at 3:06 AM, crest said:

- Again, another claim not backed up by anything.  A mod pack author decides how to include a mod in a pack.  YOu're basically saying that a bad mod pack author may not do their due diligence to address those issues you mentioned.  OK, and?  There are no rules against bad mod authors, so why should there be rules against bad mod pack authors?  Another non-argument against mod packs in general.

You are completely mistaken.  Arthmoor has back it up with more than 10 years of experience in modding both as a modder but also as a mod user.

On 9/30/2019 at 3:06 AM, crest said:

- I think you are having a hard time keeping your own arguments straight.  On the one hand you speculate that you'll get fewer visits on your page (which you haven't backed up), and on the other hand you are concerned about having to deal with issues you dont know anything about (also a speculation).  It seems way more likely that mod pack users will seek help from the mod pack community, which they DO every minute of every day, if you actually bother to visit those places.  So not a problem for you.

Speak for yourself. :peer:

On 9/30/2019 at 3:06 AM, crest said:

Give us one example of said claim.  Even if someone somewhere said that, they're crazy, and I dont see how that affects YOU, or mod packs in general.  Another non-argument against mod packs.

I can give you one good example of a mod pack that does work as intended, even if it's old now and will probably never been updated.

I know the mod in question is for Morrowind, but AFAIK MSGO are the only working mod pack out there that both mod users and the team behind it know what can go wrong and how to correct an issue.  Check the older threads on BSF.

On 9/30/2019 at 3:06 AM, crest said:

- Oh damn, so some users will make demands of you?  BUT WHAT SHALL WE DO ?!  :-)  I can't even give you a serious response to this.  Grow up.

What you should do is keep your mouth shut and start learning from people who knows what they are talking about.

On 9/30/2019 at 3:06 AM, crest said:

- Where are you getting this stuff, seriously?  5 modpacks?  Dude, just because mod packs exist doesnt' mean that demand for good mod packs will stop existing.  If users dont like a particular modpack, of course someone else will make another one.  :-)

Are you saying that you will create a mod pack and that will work?

Let me tell you one thing.  Unless you post a link to a mod pack that you have created and that can be verified that's actually you who created a mod pack, I don't believe you.

On 9/30/2019 at 3:06 AM, crest said:

- A user who installs a mod through your page will not learn anything more about creating mods, then if they install a mod pack.  Now, if you're making an argument against using mod managers, then you need to say so, but mod packs affect nothing here.  Mod authors start modding by tweaking existing mods to fit their game.  A mod pack isn't stopping anyone from doing that.  Another non-argument.

True, but without asking a modding related question then you will never learn how to mod.

Actually, mod packs does affect because it comes to the most asked questions e.g "is this mod compatible with this mod or that mod?" or "is it safe to update this mod with my current loadorder?".

As a modder people expect you to know if it is possible or not and if you are not sure then you must say so, otherwise people will start complaining and you as a modder will have a hard time to answer such questions.

On 9/30/2019 at 3:06 AM, crest said:

- You still haven't explained anywhere which mod author RIGHTS have been violated. 

On the topic of opting out of mod packs - you've already opted in the moment you posted your mod on Nexus.  Neither Nexus nor YOU can tell a user what other mods they are allowed to use alongside your own mod.  If you don't like it, take your stuff out of Nexus.  In the end It's YOU who wants to violate the rights of users to use whatever mod packs they want.  This goes against the spirit of the community, and the user's choice.  Basically, you want the choice to prevent users' choice.   You want the ability to discriminate against groups of users.  Nobody will / should grant you that.

Most modders will state what permission a mod author has for a mod and here I state my permission for my mod.

It's quite obvious you have no idea what you are talking, so stop talking complete grabage and only speak when you really know what you are talking about.  Okay?

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@Arthmoor. Copyright works well when people respect your copyright. If they don't respect your rights you have the option to take them to court, usually under civil law, and usually paying the court costs yourself. Sometimes the threat of being taken to court is enough to change their behavior. The copyright system works well for large multinational companies like MGM or Sony, but not so well for small local companies or individuals. I don't think Nexus is very big, they probably wouldn't want to go to court. I don't think the Wabbajack author would want to go to court either. But if the copyright infringers are outside your own country it becomes harder to take them to court to assert your copyright.

If Nexus and modpack authors don't respect copyright, and you are not able to take them to court, then I don't think there are too many other options. You could form a large group of like-minded mod authors and protest together against Nexus, or withdraw from Nexus and release mods here on AFK Mods, or even buyout Nexus and change their policies?

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Copyright also works well even when they don't, because if they ignore it, their hosting provider won't. The DMCA is neat like that.

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Hey. I just want you show my view on whole history of this situation. 

I came back to modding skyrim after some break and first guide i found was Ultimate Skyrim. As newbie (or more likely rusted modder) it was horrible, long and painful process. If cant relate it's like when you try to make true Italian home-made pizza when you barely know how to prepare frozen one from shop (no following recipe doesn't mean success). I vented it in BB forum and asked why it cant be packed. Ofc answer was mod authors dont want this. Out of frustration i "shouted" why we cant have program that would auto-downloaded whole list and send endorsement plus thank you. Apparently i wasnt only one or they too this idea and made automaton. Yay! When i tried it, it was like dream. Few hours and you have full list prepared for playing. Included premade save with all mcm settings precofingured. Skyrim modding couldnt miss opportunity for drama. I can imagine sounds in their heads (modpacks? modpacks? is it modpack. it must be modpack?). Meanwhile Halgari being disappointed with automaton for various reason and started work his own auto-installer - Wabbajack. I learned about when i have seen message of Mnikjom's discord how someone stole his guide etc etc. There was HUGE SHITSTORM. I cant call it differently. Dramas, bans, blocks, tantrums... Even i had little tantrum. Left most skyrim discords, unendorsed trolling authors and canceled all my patreons  for skyrim modding. I still didnt completely came back. Tho LOTD donations are now restored. Halgari had take yashed and from it derived modlist installers and start more negotiate with mod authors. (It's bit ironic that "stolen modlist" was named Prometheus - titan who "stole" fire from gods and gave it back to people. He was chained and tortured by eagle until Heracles saved him. Do we get our Heracles? :D) I am glad that situation is now better and new functions are great. I hope this whole project will only grow to pleasure both users and mod authors. 

About endorsements and donation: Lets start with donations. Who is supposed actually give you these? Common Joe after being called idiot for his questions, being laughed on discords how they cant read and use search function? Maybe he is supposed to get some Stockholm syndrom. I learned "cool boys and girls" dont give you anything. Maybe endorsement if they feel like this. So you are left with rich benefactors and crazy fans. You have to be nice to them otherwise they ditch you. Some of crazy fans maybe stays in even really bad times but that's small minority. Now endorsements. You have to wait 15 min before you are able endorse file on nexus. You are supposed to test it a bit if you like it. It's miracle people are actually comming back. I always forgot even if i really love some mods.

Thank you all who have been able read it whole. I appreciate it. It must have been difficult. :D

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To those of you who are in favour of this: Do you actually know how much work goes into not just making mods, but also learning how to make them in the first place? If you do, then why do feel you shouldn't respect the wishes of mod authors when it comes to the permissions they have set out for how their mods can be distributed?

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10 hours ago, RabidGears said:

To those of you who are in favour of this: Do you actually know how much work goes into not just making mods, but also learning how to make them in the first place? If you do, then why do feel you shouldn't respect the wishes of mod authors when it comes to the permissions they have set out for how their mods can be distributed?

That's one important aspect.

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12 hours ago, RabidGears said:

To those of you who are in favour of this: Do you actually know how much work goes into not just making mods, but also learning how to make them in the first place? If you do, then why do feel you shouldn't respect the wishes of mod authors when it comes to the permissions they have set out for how their mods can be distributed?

Using name modpacks is confusing here. Don't know why Arthmoor keeps using it. We are talking here about autoinstallers which doesn't have anything with how mods are distributed. They just take it from sites (mostly Nexus) where authors themselves are distributing it. 

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8 hours ago, Zierry said:

Using name modpacks is confusing here. Don't know why Arthmoor keeps using it. We are talking here about autoinstallers which doesn't have anything with how mods are distributed. They just take it from sites (mostly Nexus) where authors themselves are distributing it. 

Using the name mod packs here is not confusing, it's simple. It makes no difference whether it is assembled manually or automatically by a program - it's still essentially a mod pack.

BTW, you didn't really answer my questions in my previous post that you just quoted. I guess that in itself says everything about your opinion.

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The term "modpacks" is being used because that's simply how the community is referring to the collective concept. I didn't call them this, Nexus did, and whether it's a good name for it or not it's stuck.

Which doesn't ultimately matter because the end result is the same - people installing a package of mods and becoming clones of each other's installs.

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So, I've been asked to step in here in my moderator role, because some of you aren't playing nice with others.  Let me make a few things clear:

- EVERYONE is welcome in this community, as long as they play by the rules.  That includes people who signed up just for this thread.  If you're new here, welcome.  Hope you have a good time.  Attacking people solely for their post count or lack thereof is not something I will tolerate.

- Posters in this forum are expected to be civil to each other.  I understand that this is a contentious topic, with heated opinions on all sides.  That's fine.  What is not fine is attacking people and ideas in an uncivil way.  To make up some examples, "You're an idiot" and "Your opinion is crap" aren't going to fly.  "I don't agree with that, and here are some reasons why" is what you should be aiming for.  If you can't manage that level of engagement, then maybe you need to step back and reconsider your post.  Furthermore, as much as I love a good sarcastic reply, this is not the thread for that sort of thing.

- If you think somebody's acting like an ass, feel free to report the post, and somebody will take care of it.  Attacking that person right back is not an action that I will look favorably upon.

Finally, Sigurd is correct - We try to keep the moderation light around here.  I put on my moderator hat about once a year, and frankly that's too often for my taste.  I've forgotten how to make people go sit in the corner, and I'd rather not remember how.  I don't expect you all to suddenly agree with each other, but I will be watching this thread, and if you can't disagree in a civil fashion, I'll be back, and I'll start sitting people in the corner, whether or not you're a new poster or a regular.

Image result for be excellent to each other

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