This is a special ‘heads up’ announcement to give you an early warning of our upcoming sale.
On February 15th EST Dugi Guides will have a Half-off (50% discount) sale of ALL our guides and packages for ONE DAY ONLY.
This is to remember the one year anniversary of The Day that Zygor Came
The short story behind it…
Before we created our own addon, Dugi Guides used an Open Source software called TourGuide which served as the addon to read our guides in-game.
We had written permission from the author to use the TourGuide addon commercially and we supported the author with donations.
Then about this time 2010 a small gnome by the name of Zygor and his lawyer came to our doorstep and filed a DMCA notice, claiming that he is now the owner of TourGuide and demanded that Dugi Guides pay damages of $75,000 USD or else we will face a much bigger lawsuit of $150,000 per Copyright Infringement + legal costs.
We discovered later that the ownership rights of TourGuide was sold to Zygor a couple of months earlier for a undisclosed sum of money.
Zygor then removed all distribution of TourGuide from other websites such as Curse and WoWInterface which prevented anyone from downloading TourGuide. Without the ability to download TourGuide from anywhere our users were unable to use our guides with TourGuide, which also prevented us from selling our guides.
Dugi Guides would have still been able to distribute TourGuide but we took the matter very seriously and we were forced to close our store for about 3 weeks until we finished creating our own addon and were absolutely certain about our position.
During this time the folks from Zygor posted announcements in their newsletter, forum publicly stating that their intentions with TourGuide was to implement it with their addon and nothing else. Zygor claimed that Dugi Guides was breaking the law and they are just following proper legal procedure and the threats from their lawyer continued to come.
Zygor himself also continued to spread false statements in our own forum and blog by posting under several different names which we later discovered.
Once we were given the all clear from our lawyer, we posted all the facts and clearly proved that we were within our right to distribute TourGuide as it was an Open Source software and that we have permission from the author.
What happened since then…
Our deadline to pay $75,000 to Zygor was 31st March 2010 and we didn’t give them a single dime. Zygor and his lawyer were never heard from again since our last statement.
Zygor never implemented TourGuide with their own addon.
TourGuide was made available to the public again without any announcement.
Zygor removed all the defamatory statements against Dugi Guides from their forum.
Zygor made no statements to defend any of his actions against Dugi Guides
We also believe that Zygor no longer owns the rights to TourGuide and TourGuide has been returned back to the original author and it is currently no longer updated or used.
I have to admit the entire event came as a shock and was very distressing to us, something like this has never happened to us before and we didn’t know how to handle it. We were a relatively small company VS a company that was about 5x times bigger than us that had disposable income for Lawyers and buying out TourGuide. We fought back by involving the public so that our customers knew what was going on. I believe that the support we received and the backlash towards Zygor, helped play a part in their decission to back away.
But we were also glad it happened because it was a major turning point for our company. All the support from the public really drove us to work harder.
We have moved on since then but we will highlight this event once a year until we receive some form of public acknowledgement from Zygor that their actions were wrong.
What can you do to help…
We believe that a large company like Zygor should fulfill their corporate responsibility and behave in an ethical manner. Without smaller companies like Dugi Guides offering alternative products then the consumer loses out. Innovations suffer and Zygor could continue to charge $100 for their leveling guides.
No matter how good their products are, it should be clear that their actions will not be tolerated and not something that they can sweep under the rug to forget about.
The money spent on TourGuide and Lawyers could have been better spent on improving their products or passed on as savings to their customers or other positive causes.
You can help by not supporting Zygor Guides and sharing this article and try to get a real explanation from Zygor regarding their actions towards Dugi Guides.
The long story behind it…
The complete archive of everything that happened is documented in our Blog here.
But I have to warn you its really long… you should start from the first article at the bottom, there is a lot of information in the comments section as well.
Thank you for reading!
Be sure to take advantage of our Half-off (50% discount) sale of ALL our guides and packages on February 15th
Dave Farrell (Dugi)