Los Angeles – The operator of a private, unauthorized
multiplayer server set-up for players of Blizzard’s "World of
Warcraft" online game has been ordered by a federal court to pay over $88
million in damages.

On Aug. 10, Alyson Reeves, the proprietor of ScapeGaming,
was found guilty of operating the unauthorized servers, and ordered to pay back
the over $3 million she earned through PayPal from the over 400,000 users of
her service.

In addition, she must pay $85 million in statutory damages, and
$63,000 in attorney’s fees. (The $85 million works out to a statutory minimum $200 penalty for every ScapeGaming user.)

"Our ultimate goal is to create the best games
in the world, and that means we need to protect our games and safeguard our
players’ experiences with them. Server emulators that use Blizzard’s IP
facilitate piracy and offer unauthorized, inconsistent gaming experiences that
can damage Blizzards reputation and goodwill with players," Blizzard
said in a statement.

"We take these types of threats very seriously and
will continue to take every available measure to protect our rights


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