Those of you that already know the story regarding these and other websites may skip this paragraph. Several websites have, for a while now, been selling our Wii homebrew tools in conjunction with warez loaders, under the guise of “unlocking” you Wii. In doing this, they of course make all sorts of outlandish claims, such as full compatibility, avoidance of breaking the warranty, and an impossible ability to work through future updates. Needless to say, these warez loaders aren’t fully compatible, are slower than using originals, installing homebrew breaks your warranty (whether you manage to hide it or not is a different issue), and chances are the next Nintendo update will shut them down again (why, oh, why, are you taking so long, Nintendo?). They also seem to be making a pretty penny – we’ve heard figures of $8000 monthly revenue for HomebreWare. This doesn’t make us very happy, given that we’re making these tools for free. The two websites are located at homebreware.com and wiiunlocker.com (don’t link to them, they don’t need any of our PageRank).
Apparently HomebreWare has been recently sold for $30000. The old owner linked to our website download page and at least attempted to make the package somewhat legal (if entirely redundant and a waste of money). The new owner obviously couldn’t care less about the legality part. He’s converted the “package” into exclusively a piracy tool, with no other homebrew besides the Twilight Hack, The Homebrew Channel, and the usual warez loaders, plus a generous sprinkling of Nintendo software, and hosts it all on his server. He also bundles HBC beta9, which didn’t yet include the scam warning screen (so anyone who doesn’t have an active internet connection on the Wii won’t even know that he was scammed). He also includes a handy guide on how to torrent Wii games. I’m back in the process of firing a few DMCA notices around to try to get it taken down (or at least piss them off somewhat), but this is getting absurd. If anyone knows a lawyer willing to offer advice of what, if anything, can be done (practically speaking), or what the best course of action is in these cases, I’d sincerely appreciate it if they could contact me.
As for the other guys, Wiiunlocker seems to be trying as hard as they can to hide the fact that they’re selling our software. Originally, they just hotlinked to our downloads. Since we killed unknown referrers, then they switched to non-linked tinyurl URLs (which you have to copy and paste into the address bar), which results in a blank referrer. After that, I implemented a dynamic link mechanism that forces you to go through our downloads page – then they tried copying one of those links, but they cycle every 10 minutes and thus it didn’t last long. Having lost the battle against our server, they turned to a publicly available mirror. We contacted its owner and got it shut down. They’ve switched to a secret mirror hosted at The Android News, which we can only guess is a friend of theirs, or a hacked website. We’re in the process of trying to get that taken down.
If you are currently hosting a copy of any of our software, we ask that you remove it and link to http://hbc.hackmii.com instead. We generally don’t mind mirrors, but it makes you a ripe target for one of these scammers to hotlink. Then we’d have to get in contact, and it’s all a big pain for you and us. We have plenty of bandwidth at http://hbc.hackmii.com, so it’s easiest for everyone if you just link to our downloads page.
The title might seem redundant to those that already know this, but I’m hoping it might help draw the attention of some potential “customers”.