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The Shocking Reasons Why Bungie Is Suing This Streamer

The relationship between streamers and video games might seem pretty straightforward to the outside observer, but it's actually surprisingly complex. A number of streamers have gotten in trouble in recent years for violating copyright laws, resulting in DMCA bans, but streamers and developers typically have a fairly symbiotic relationship. Streamers play games live, and then people who like what they see may end up buying the game. But sometimes streamers can take a course of action against a publisher that results in a response far more dire than a simple Twitch ban.

A lawsuit was filed by Bungie on July 15, 2022, against Luca Leone, a "Destiny 2" streamer who runs the Twitch channel MiffysWorld. Bungie's lawsuit accuses Leone of five different violations: Breach of Contract, Copyright Infringement, Fraud, DMCA Anti-Circumvention, and Violation of the Washington Protection Act. Basically, Bungie is claiming that Leone has streamed himself using cheat software that violates Bungie's user agreement and that he has engaged in a campaign of fraud and harassment that is harmful to both the company and the "Destiny 2" player base. 

Bungie's representatives state, "defendant Leone, who tweets from the handle @inkcel, is a 'Destiny 2' user who routinely streams himself using cheats – third-party software used to gain an unfair advantage by players without the skill or integrity to succeed at the game on their own merit and a level playing field, and which ruins the experience of playing 'Destiny 2' for Bungie's large community of honest gamers." However, the allegations against Leone go much further than mere cheating.

Bungie is taking Leone to court

This isn't Bungie's first time having to defend its user agreement. The company recently sent out a pretty dire warning to any fans hoping to bootleg the game onto the Steam Deck and has been harshly cracking down on cheating. And just three months ago, Bungie filed a lawsuit against a cheat website for allegedly infringing its copyrights and trademarks.

It seems that the circumstances are different for Leone, however. Not only does Bungie claim that he has been banned across thirteen separate accounts by the company in the past, but it also alleges that he is an active member of an online hacking marketplace forum called "OGUsers," through which he sold social media account information and non-transferable "Destiny 2" emblems, including some that were made to reward players for participating in charity drives. On top of all that, Bungie also claims that Leone has repeatedly threatened Bungie and its employees, even going so far as to tweet that he would burn the company's offices.

The document's introduction closes by stating, "that combination of conduct makes Bungie's decision to bring this lawsuit easy. As Bungie has demonstrated repeatedly, it will not allow its game, its community, or its employees to be abused, defrauded, or threatened. Leone has done all three, and this action is the consequence."