We have a question asking how to remove a splash screen from the free version of Unity. Currently, the option to modify the splash screen is determined by the license. This is also covered in their support/faq.

The poster claims to have a solution using a memory scanner/hex editor/debugger.

This sounds like it would violate their terms of service:

General Restrictions. Except as expressly specified in this Agreement, you may not: (a) copy (except in the course of loading or installing) or modify or create derivative works of the Unity Software;

...

Accordingly, you agree not to disassemble, decompile or reverse engineer the Unity Software, in whole or in part, or permit or authorize a third party to do so, except to the extent such activities are expressly permitted by this Agreement or by law notwithstanding this prohibition.

So, my question here is, how should we handle answers that violate terms of service? We have some questions that mention jailbreaking, but I didn't see any that describe how to jailbreak. In contrast, this situation involves giving instructions.

The closest stack exchange related answer I could find focused on questions about getting away with breaking the law. Breaking ToS isn't necessarily the same as breaking the law though, so I thought this warranted some meta discussion.

  • I believe that the answer you're referring to would only skip the logo on one's own computer; it doesn't sound like something that would be baked into the mod and be redistributed; just let the modder skip past the logo on their own computer, for the sake of faster iteration times during development of the mod. I'm far less concerned about that than I would have been if it was asking for a way to remove the logo in redistributions. – Trevor Powell Feb 12 at 4:28
up vote 7 down vote accepted

It is not StackExchange's staff's, moderators' or users' responsibility to monitor 3rd party ToS violations.

So we should do nothing about it.

If Unity gets fed up, they'll give SE a call and SE will take care of it.

Further reading: Should moderators enforce NDAs for software vendors?


One of the tricky parts in here is how is the ToS interpreted.

Unity also provides a downloadable software component (the “Unity Software”),

Here, the "Unity Software" sounds to me like it is what you download from Unity's web site: what you use to edit and program your game and what you use to build your game; not the games made with Unity.

In this case, the ToS would not apply to these games and modding a game made with Unity to remove the splash screen would totally be legitimate.

Now perhaps the game they're trying to mod has their own ToS which prevents users from removing the splash screen, or modding it altogether.

As a side note, IANAL, so all of this second part might be rubbish.

  • 1
    We had another question about the interpretation of this ToS, and though I'm also not a lawyer, I think Stephane Hockenhull's statement is correct, that the exported game contains the runtime engine which is part of "The Unity Software" in this sense. That said, I don't think players are prompted to agree to that ToS the way the developer is when downloading/installing Unity, so I don't know if they're bound by similar terms. There might be DMCA protections though where the "digital lock" put on the splash screen has its own rights somehow – DMGregory Feb 5 at 14:51
  • The prior post "Should moderators enforce NDAs for software vendors?" does seem to handle most of the issues - good find. – Pikalek Feb 5 at 16:13
  • @DMGregory Hmmm, IANAL, but I also agree that ToS might be less applicable here & DMCA moreso. – Pikalek Feb 5 at 16:15
  • I'm uncomfortable with your claim that removing an author's attribution from a creative work "would totally be legitimate", if there is no ToS in force. – Trevor Powell Feb 12 at 8:34

I think we should vote to close questions about how to violate ToS. Would not want a cease and desist sent to SE over one of these.

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