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Billy Mitchell taking legal action against Twin Galaxies and Guinness

SmiteOfHand

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,036
Thread around Billy Mitchell's score removal here if catching up


Billy Mitchell's attorney has contacted Twin Galaxies demanding they retract their previous statements and reinstate his records to their website. They have 14 days to do before legal action will be taken.

Read Jace's post outlining action being taken HERE

Demand letter can be viewed HERE

Mitchell's team has created a document outlining his evidence that Twin Galaxies' behaviour constitutes libel. Also contains counter evidence that attempts to discount TG's original findings. Read HERE

Mitchell is also taking action against Guinness in the same manner, demanding they reinstate his records and retract previous statements.
A lot to read. Working my way through it.


The Retraction Letter (shorter 4 page) is focused around his Perfect Pac-Man score. Namely these two articles.

Dispute Decision: Billy Mitchell's Donkey Kong & All Other Records Removed
Setting Records: 5 Impressive And Legitimate Feats Involving Video Games

"This article, which heavily stressed that the records discussed were legitimate achievements, started by reallocating Mitchell’s most famous achievement, “The Perfect Pac-man,” implying that Mitchell cheated to achieve it. Moreover, Twin Galaxies never clarified that Mitchell did not cheat to achieve this record."

And then subsequently how Guinness messaged their removal of the Perfect Pac-Man record. The crux of the argument being that it implies the Perfect Pac-Man game was done using MAME, which to be a tiny bit fair is not true to my knowledge. It was removed, same as all his scores, because of the proven DK MAME run. At worst Guinness fumbled their messaging here, that is all.

 
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plagiarize

To its ports I have been
Moderator
Oct 25, 2017
8,233
Cape Cod, MA
Correct me if I'm wrong but didn't they have defacto proof that he cheated?
You can argue the proof doesn't show he cheated, per se...

But they have defacto proof he lied, and that he was playing on an emulator when he said he wasn't. The MAME rankings are separate to the arcade scoreboard (and I'm not sure if Twin Galaxies even have MAME rankings), so he misrepresented what version he played to get his score on the arcade rankings.
 

Gestault

Member
Oct 26, 2017
6,377
As someone with a working understanding of libel laws in the US, this feels more like a cry for help than a legitimate filing. Something as simple as vague concern about Mitchell's credibility re: previous questionable/falsified submissions is more than enough to eliminate the claim that there's actual malice involved. That leaves me with a lot of questions about the judgement of Mitchell's counsel.
 

tommyv2

Member
Nov 6, 2017
862
This entire thing is insane because he is amazing at the game and has done a million points on arcade hardware in front of people, so this witch hunt isn't nearly as dramatic as you'd expect.
 

newyokohama

Member
Jul 10, 2018
395
I mean, I hold onto things for a long time, still trying to recreate arcade moments I had in the 90's, but Billy's got me by miles.
 

TRU

Member
Nov 9, 2017
311
This is the ultimate frivolous lawsuit. So much time and effort put in to who had the highest score in Donkey Kong!!!!!

People were saying in the MW Beta thread that COD would not release it today out of respect it is 9/11. Then on 9/11 where so many people lost so much we are now filing lawsuits over a video game score and what websites that score should be listed on.
 

Lump

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,671
Correct me if I'm wrong but didn't they have defacto proof that he cheated?
Billy Mitchell has the skills, but there is solid evidence he recorded his record on a record-ineligible system.

It’s like how a speedrunner cannot claim to get a world record if they use an unofficial emulator to beat a game at a new fastest time - they might’ve shown that legit skill to earn that time, but if it’s not an official version of that game, it shouldn’t count for obvious reasons.
 

Mendinso

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,417
I can't remember, was he the guy that someone confirmed, even through TASing, his reported record wasn't possible on one game? I may be thinking of a different guy.
 

8bit

Member
Oct 27, 2017
2,074
Used to dislike him, but he was pretty good in that cameo appearance in Legends of Tomorrow.
 
OP
OP
SmiteOfHand

SmiteOfHand

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,036
The Retraction Letter (shorter 4 page) is focused around his Perfect Pac-Man score. Namely these two articles.

Dispute Decision: Billy Mitchell's Donkey Kong & All Other Records Removed
Setting Records: 5 Impressive And Legitimate Feats Involving Video Games

"This article, which heavily stressed that the records discussed were legitimate achievements, started by reallocating Mitchell’s most famous achievement, “The Perfect Pac-man,” implying that Mitchell cheated to achieve it. Moreover, Twin Galaxies never clarified that Mitchell did not cheat to achieve this record."

And then subsequently how Guinness messaged their removal of the Perfect Pac-Man record. The crux of the argument being that it implies the Perfect Pac-Man game was done using MAME, which to be a tiny bit fair is not true to my knowledge. It was removed, same as all his scores, because of the proven DK MAME run. At worst Guinness fumbled their messaging here, that is all.



On to the 160 page behemoth. Good lord.
 

Hero_of_the_Day

Avenger
Oct 27, 2017
4,023
This entire thing is insane because he is amazing at the game and has done a million points on arcade hardware in front of people, so this witch hunt isn't nearly as dramatic as you'd expect.
The fact he seems to have done shady shit despite his ability to have done it legit makes it all more insane, not less.
 

Agent Unknown

Member
Oct 26, 2017
1,516
This will probably hold up about as well as Mitchell’s ridiculous lawsuit several years ago against Regular Show over the Garrett Bobby Ferguson parody character.
 
OP
OP
SmiteOfHand

SmiteOfHand

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,036
"For over a decade, Twin Galaxies lost the chain of custody of all Billy Mitchell’s performances, not just Donkey Kong. Moreover, they lost custody to Dwayne Richard, who is the former owner of a website called fuckbillymitchell.com"

Ok. I admit I laughed.
 

Border

Member
Oct 25, 2017
8,597
How is this guy a real person?

Back when I first saw The King of Kong I assumed they were carefully editing him into a caricature for entertainment value.
Mitchell is a hilarious villain, but that doesn't change that a lot of King of Kong was edited to make him look worse than he actually behaved.
 

Hydrus

Member
Oct 27, 2017
3,758
How is this guy a real person?

Back when I first saw The King of Kong I assumed they were carefully editing him into a caricature for entertainment value.
It's definitely an act. I've actually heard alot of nice things about him from people that met him. There's also an interview out there where he's not in character and he seemed pretty chill.
 

WGMBY

Member
Oct 27, 2017
340
Boston, MA
Just this morning I was telling my wife on our way to work about the whole Billy Mitchell/Regular Show saga. It seems like he has a lot of other business going on besides being the high score dude, so I'm surprised to see he's still banging on about this stuff.
 

Nacho

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,491
NYC
You can argue the proof doesn't show he cheated, per se...

But they have defacto proof he lied, and that he was playing on an emulator when he said he wasn't. The MAME rankings are separate to the arcade scoreboard (and I'm not sure if Twin Galaxies even have MAME rankings), so he misrepresented what version he played to get his score on the arcade rankings.
Unfortunately it's very possible that he played on a machine not knowing it was mame. It's not out of the realm of very real possibility.

And let's be honest, twin galaxies is a shit show anyway, they've used Billy Mitchell as a sort of example to try to clean up their image.
 

British

Member
Dec 15, 2018
53
This guy is a fucking joke.

Shame, as he’s still a damn good player at the games he played.
 

Nacho

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,491
NYC
It's definitely an act. I've actually heard alot of nice things about him from people that met him. There's also an interview out there where he's not in character and he seemed pretty chill.
Met him at Gen Con this year. He's super nice, and was even willing to chat with people who like, pretty much were internet breathing hate machines, where I feel like it'd be understandable whatever your stance that he'd rather not all weekend.

His friend defended him later on a gen con message board saying that king of kong essentially paid him to be the 'villain' of the doc, asking him to ham it up. Idk if I believe that much tho.
 

Cheerilee

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,693
The Retraction Letter (shorter 4 page) is focused around his Perfect Pac-Man score. Namely these two articles.

Dispute Decision: Billy Mitchell's Donkey Kong & All Other Records Removed
Setting Records: 5 Impressive And Legitimate Feats Involving Video Games

"This article, which heavily stressed that the records discussed were legitimate achievements, started by reallocating Mitchell’s most famous achievement, “The Perfect Pac-man,” implying that Mitchell cheated to achieve it. Moreover, Twin Galaxies never clarified that Mitchell did not cheat to achieve this record."

And then subsequently how Guinness messaged their removal of the Perfect Pac-Man record. The crux of the argument being that it implies the Perfect Pac-Man game was done using MAME, which to be a tiny bit fair is not true to my knowledge. It was removed, same as all his scores, because of the proven DK MAME run. At worst Guinness fumbled their messaging here, that is all.



On to the 160 page behemoth. Good lord.
Billy Mitchell's a cheater. With the amount that he knew about the rules (being a former judge, and a stickler for real hardware), there was only one reason for him to use MAME and pass it off as real hardware (which by itself might just a minor technical violation, born of ignorance), and that's because using MAME made it impossible for anyone to see what cheats he was using.

And since he was found to be a cheater, all of his records were stricken, including the ones where he ostensibly did not cheat.

And now he's suing because of grammar in a paragraph. What that paragraph says is essentially...
- TG stripped Billy of his records.
- (These stripped records included his Perfect Pac Man.)
- Because Jeremy Young proved that Billy used MAME.

Now's another good time to mention that Billy Mitchell basically cheated to get his Perfect Pac Man record.

Perfect Pac Man was a record that nobody was shooting for, because you needed to change a dip switch setting in order to make it possible, and the community felt that "default settings" were the only valid settings for records.

Billy Mitchell used his position as a TG Judge to change the rules to allow a Perfect Pac Man game to be played, and then he entered himself into his own competition. It's entirely possible that he gave himself an advantage by training for this change of rules before anyone knew that the change was coming.

When all the competitors arrived and Billy saw that they were all as good as him or better, he got a jump on all of them by stealing the record one day before the competition that he himself set the date for.

While Billy Mitchell was in Japan getting his trophy from Namco, he used his improper influence with TG to get them to suppress the fact that there was already another Perfect Pac Man on record (thanks to one of the deflated and de-motivated competitors actually bothering to go through with it).

Fuck Billy Mitchell's records. They begin and end with lies and cheating.
 

Druffmaul

Member
Oct 24, 2018
239
How is this guy a real person?

Back when I first saw The King of Kong I assumed they were carefully editing him into a caricature for entertainment value.
I don't know what "editing" would have to do with it. He said shit and they got it on camera, it wasn't like context would have made a difference.

(EDIT: That said, I do remember hearing they edited the scene at the Florida arcade to look like Mitchell and his wife completely ignored Wiebe, when in reality they went over and said hi to him.)

But I also eventually concluded that he was playing a "bad guy" role with his tongue in his cheek, with a sense of humor. Not just in the movie, but as his public persona in general as a cocky video gaming rockstar. I just noticed more and more that when he said fucked up arrogant shit, he had a twinkle in his eye, he was practically winking.

But I went back to thinking he was a piece of shit after the MAME stuff got exposed. "Maybe he didn't know he was playing on MAME." *bzzzt* When you're submitting to TG you're supposed to do whatever due diligence is required to make sure you're playing on approved hardware.
 
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TSM

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,705
Unfortunately it's very possible that he played on a machine not knowing it was mame. It's not out of the realm of very real possibility.
If you watched the King of Kong you'd see that they were super anal about the arcade hardware used to set records. There's no way he played on a MAME machine to set a world record without being aware of it.
 

ChryZ

Member
Oct 26, 2017
1,657
This whole thing sports a billboard sized "narcissistic delusional disorder" neon sign. Look at this schmuck, he's so in love with himself:

 

Sixfortyfive

Member
Oct 28, 2017
1,910
It's definitely an act. I've actually heard alot of nice things about him from people that met him. There's also an interview out there where he's not in character and he seemed pretty chill.
Kind of hard to argue that he's not a douchebag when he's made a habit of threatening legal action and pulling strings among his old boys' club whenever somebody rightfully outs him for his shady activity.