Those who are familiar with PRC.net already know the drill, but for our newer readers who may be a bit confused, we give a small state of the union address each time our site increases in traffic by 100,000 hits. Why do we celebrate a milestone like this? It’s simple, really. PRC.net is nothing but a wall of text, and in 2015, people straight up don’t like reading articles. Reading is important, and managing to get 175,000 fans of a niche video game genre to sit down and read lengthy articles in an era where information is commonly presented in short YouTube videos is an achievement that should be celebrated.
Maple’s season working on Setups for an iRacing Peak Anti-Freeze Series team has come to a close, and Sev will be pushing out a review of Mad Max in the near future. If there’s something you’d like their in-depth opinion on, check out the Submit page and send in your questions – be sure to list who you want answering your submission.
Do you all see that ugly ass logo at the top of the page, one that was blatantly stolen from Audi and hacked up in Paint Shop Pro for our website? We’re tired of it, and we’re going to stage a mass coloring contest to find a replacement because we can. Everybody who sends in a submission will be considered a winner, and as WordPress lets me put the header image on a random rotation, we’ll post absolutely anything that gets sent into us.
The rules? Crayons only, you’ve gotta write PRC.net or PretendRaceCars somewhere on your picture, and your submission must be 937 x 300 pixels as displayed above. There is no end date.
On Friday, we published a pretty lengthy article detailing how iRacing’s EULA, Terms of Service, and Sporting Code would get annihilated in front of a judge. To make a long story short, I received an unwarranted IP ban from iRacing in June for daring to give their Street Stock Camaro a negative review, and now have nothing to show for the $800+ I’ve spent on additional cars and tracks within iRacing. When I finally inquired about the ban after four months, wondering if I’d see any of that money back or get to race again, iRacing cited an extremely shady portion of their End User License Agreement that says they’re allowed to get rid of you for sneezing at the wrong time; confirming they’re unable to take criticism of any sort.
The more we dug, we ended up discovering that iRacing forces you to give up the presumption of innocence, right to free speech, and freedom of the press while in the confines of their online environment. Of course, they can’t do that, as you cannot include several terms in an EULA for computer software that blatantly go against basic human rights and already established local consumer protection laws and regulations, but they unfortunately get away with it because people are too scared to fight an entire company.
Despite the mixed reception our site receives both in our own comments section, as well as on other message boards such as Reddit, most people thought we had a legitimate case.
In fact, many readers wanted to throw money at us and suggested a class-action lawsuit…
We here at PretendRaceCars.net are sim racers. We would like to come home after an unexciting day, play unfinished racing sims, and occasionally write articles for a small website. We do NOT want to be known as “those three guys who put their heads together and took down an entire developer.” It’s fun being right for a night and cracking jokes on Teamspeak, but let’s say we’re victorious in the end as some have predicted, and iRacing is found in violation of an obscure customer protection rule from the dawn of the PC age in 2001, and is forced to pay $50 in cash to every iRacing member because the judge doesn’t really understand video games.
Sure, there would be a celebration in the comments section of the inevitable article recapping everything, but the reality is that iRacing cannot afford even the smallest of legal slip ups, and 140,000+ people would no longer have a racing sim to play. Being right and going the distance to legitimize our cause could potentially come at the expense of destroying something a whole shitload of people love. This ain’t cool.
Then, all 140,000 of those people would complain that they’d spent anywhere from $200 – $1200 on iRacing, and now had nothing to show for it. This leads to another class-action lawsuit, similar to what happened with NHRA’s Pro Stock Truck class in the early 2000’s. The sanctioning body found out the hard way that you can’t just shut down something overnight, and you’re looking at a mess that would spiral out of control and change the entire climate of sim racing if iRacing was forced to close up shop overnight.
Personally, I’d prefer to just have my money back, or get to race again. It’s a Kurt Busch-like scenario where everyone knows he drew the shortest straw due to NASCAR’s nonsensical rules, but it was much better for the sport, and Busch, to move forward and ignore the outlandish events of the 2014-2015 offseason. The last thing iRacing needs as a company is to be known as those guys who charge ridiculous prices for NASCAR 2003 with updated graphics, who sued modders to try and funnel them into paying for iRacing, and then went bankrupt because some guy they banned had enough community support fight their crazy EULA terms in court.
Want to help out? Don’t throw money at us (although our donation button still works), choose one of the following:
- Research the exact laws and regulations iRacing has violated with their EULA/Terms of Service/Sporting Code, and post them in the comments section below.
- Talk about this everywhere. iRacing is not going to ban fifty people from their forums in a single day just for discussing an article on a sim racing news site. If they do, congratulations, they just proved all of our crazy conspiracies we’ve discussed over the past few months to be extremely accurate.
Here’s to another 100k hits, hope you guys are enjoying this place!