> If the company wishes to protect a console version, they can contact us just as Cave > > and Arika have in the past. (In Arika's case, they made more copies of the game > than > > Xbox 360s have ever sold in Japan, with predictable 2600 ET-like results, but > MAMEdev > > did remove the games as we were asked). > > But then nobody decided to ask them first, they just did it, and only did you remove > it, after the fact. Right? > > I do not see that as a positive. > > Sorry no kudos for you.
You might like to rethink things.
Plenty of people have asked the "major" companies. Not a single one as far as I can tell has ever said "Yes". There is either no answer (which implies "No") or else there is a definite "No".
Here's one example: In the very early days of arcade emulation, Dave Spicer (Sparcade) and I exchanged many, many dozens (perhaps 100's) of emails. In 1995/96, I offered a lot of money (think 6 figures !) to back him to take his arcade emulator and make it a commercial product with 100% legal / licensed games. The BIG problem - and the reason the project never went commercial - was the permissions. No-one would grant any. No-one even wanted to discuss money / licensing fees. No-one would talk about it. The "right person" was never there to talk to. No-one would answer letters. No-one would return phone calls. They just wanted to sit on their IP. Their focus was the future. Not old or ancient games from their past.
If people asked before emulating, then there would be ZERO emulation. Many of the games supported by projects like MAME are preserved ONLY because these projects saved them, and often they were saved just in time. Many games would already be lost to oblivion if things were left to the IP holders. In many cases, they don't even have a backup of their source code.
The fact that there are now some freeware games for MAME doesn't mean anything. These were only released long after MAME had become a success (emulating dozens of games, with wide distribution).
If MAME had been a project that was still trying to emulate it's first game with full permission of the IP owner, and had approached any of the very nice people who have now released their games as freeware, then would they have said "YES" ?
I'm all for you doing research about this for your thesis. However, you need to keep an open mind. It sounds like you have already decided on what your answers are, long before you've done the research and probably long before you have even thought what the real questions should be.
Where are your interviews with emulator devs, IP holders, etc ? Where are your surveys of these people ? Where's your literature review ? Where have you tested your claims ? e.g. write to a selection of IP holders to ask them about licensing their games for your own hypothetical emulation project, and see how far you get. Then, and only then, will you know what the real situation is.
If you are coming to conclusions, you'd better have solid evidence to backup all of your findings, or your thesis wont be worth anything.