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NDA And What It Means To Beta Testers

A few tips to keep you out of NDA violations.
This article is over 10 years old and may contain outdated information

With so many MMORPGs going into Beta or preparing to go into Beta, the internet’s filled with NDA violations. The biggest problem is people just don’t read the things they are agreeing to. In this article I’ll give a basic rundown of the common NDA.

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The First Rule Of Fight Club:

The common joke in my guild is the Fight Club reference. NDA means Non Disclosure Agreement, this means you’re agreeing not to talk about whatever the NDA is for. Don’t just go tell people you’re in a Beta, even if it doesn’t specifically say, “…you can’t say you’re in Beta.” Admitting that you’re in Beta makes you a target for those who are trying to gather information about the game.

Almost every NDA specifically states that you are not to talk about mechanics and assets of the game. Don’t go out taking screenshots, streaming, discussing battle mechanics, or talking about in-game items. All of these are in direct violation of the NDA.

Public Community Sites And Forums:

Just because there are public communities for the game, it does not mean you can post sensitive information in them. If the forum was not specifically supplied by the company when you received your invite, it’s not approved for in-game information posts. If you really need to chat about the game, do it in-game or on the tester forums that your invite directs you to.

You Could Get Banned Or Worse:

Companies reserve the right to ban you or take legal actions if you break NDA. Just because legal actions don’t happen often does not mean they won’t. Don’t let yourself be the example. Getting sued isn’t an ideal outcome just because you had to talk about a game.

If you’re in a well-known guild or community and get invited through those outlets be even more careful. You no longer just represent yourself, you also represent the guild or community you received an invite through. Negligent actions could cause your guild or community to get blacklisted, which means anyone associated with them will no longer be able to get into Betas.

Just be careful, if you’re not sure whether something breaks NDA, odds are it does.

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Image of GabrielKross
Currently an unpublished author working on multiple full length novels 3 of which being a 3 part trilogy. Also an avid video game player with a penchant for MMOs.