Is the Homebrew Channel illegal? ?

3 Answers

  • 2 months ago

    While the Homebrew Channel does violates Nintendo's Acceptable Usage Policy for the Wii & Wii U (by installing unauthorized software on the system & modifying the system beyond Nintendo's scope), it will void any warranties you may have.  HOWEVER, the Homebrew Channel is not illegal in it's own right.

    The Homebrew Channel does contain anything illegal in itself, even though it can provide the framework for illicit acts to be done by others.  It all depends on how the person installing it intends to use it... much like somebody buying a rifle could use it to hunt wild game (assuming they have a hunting permit) OR use it to commit murder.

    In terms of legal precedence, the Copyright Office & the Library of Congress has provided a DCMA EXEMPTION to the act of "jailbreaking" devices in 2012 & kept the exemption in place (renewing it as needed)... but this only extends to devices you legally own.  Therefore, installing the Homebrew Channel on your own Wii / Wii U is legal, but is illegal if you install the Homebrew Channel on Somebody Else's Wii / Wii U (since you're not the owner of the device).  HOWEVER, it's difficult for law enforcement to prove this (as you could claim you were assisting them with the installation instead of doing it for them).

    The TL;DR is that you shouldn't sweat it...  the worst that Nintendo could do is ban the console from their online servers, which have already been shut down for the Wii.

  • 2 months ago

    It isn't illegal to install it, but it does void the warranty (not that there is any warranty left on Wii systems, but that was a concern back in the day).

    What you do with it could be illegal, but just installing Homebrew Channel is not.

  • 2 months ago

    No. Why would it be?

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