Valve getting slapped by German Consumer Protection Agency
The German Consumer Protection Agency VZBV recently gave Valve a slap on the wrist for changing their Steam Terms of Service, stating that "game developers can't just force their their terms upon users." If you don't agree to these new ToS, which prohibit any class action law suits the users might throw at Valve, you can lose access to your Steam library even though you've legally bought the games with all the usage rights that came with them. According to the VZBV, users need to be given an alternative such as...not agreeing to the new ToS. Wait...what?
Another gripe the VZBV has is the fact that you can't transfer your steam account, which goes against a decision made by the European Court of Justice that clearly allows the re-selling of downloaded digital software. Both of these criticisms reputedly represent a violation of German competition laws. Valve has until September 26th to publish a declaration of cease and desist or else...well, it's lawsuitin'-time.
Okay, we're a bit late to the party, but hey...at least we're doing something, although I doubt Valve would give users the option to stick to the old ToS. After all, that'd basically be like saying "Want to give up some of your rights? You don't have to, but we'd appreciate it."
Looks like Germany hopped onto the wagon pretty quickly on this one.
Oh? Then what is the big deal for Valve? It's not an issue at all as far as I see.
Who cares about the USK? Just get the PEGI versions of games.
Cool story bro.
Plus, the influence of hired lobbyists make any kind of progress against corporate interests nigh impossible.
I couldn't agree with you any more, but I think the problem is the fact that our government doesn't see this issue of importance.
Go Germany. I hope their progressive consumer-friendly laws gain traction over here.
the new ToS prevented you from access your content prior to the update.
If you didnt agree to the new ToS you couldnt access your steam account or games installed on your hard drive.
Actually, Valve DOESNT have the right, because it violates german law.
I'll never be able to fully appreciate anything those guys are doing for us, not until someone stops the USK. Still, I'm glad to see them do their job well.
Regardless of that "in-thing" of denying the right of class action lawsuits that each company seems to jump on. Withdrawing access to bought games is theft, they could ban someone from buying anything else, but taking them away... not in MY somewhat civilized world!!!
Which is exactly what the VZBZ requires them to do.
I like this
I was thinking the exact same thing!
Actually, most ToS violate german law in some way. They all violate one basic principle: You should know them before you purchase. So if a company attaches ToS to their game, from a legal stanpoint, those ToS would only be valid if you agree to them, before you buy the game. But you don't, cuz you need to buy the game to see the ToS.
As a german, I like this decision. Just imagine: You bought a car and all of the sudden the car salesman says "I changed the buying conditions. If you don't agree to them, I'll just take your keys."
They could just give an option to leave you access with your account and games, just not let you buy any more unless you accept the new ToS.
I think you're foolish and I wish that other countries stood up for people rights like Germany is here. To be allowed to say that filing a lawsuit gives up your entire library is insane, that's like saying, hey come work for my construction company, but if you feel like suing us because your manager dittled your junk and we made you go on faulty scaffolding that collapsed, we have the right to take all of your pay back that you've acquired throughout the years. And plus it's European law that digital ownership actually means something, so to defend Valve on an infringement of human rights AND an infringement on European law can only mean one thing. http://youlose.ytmnd.com/
Screw Steam. I'm sticking with GOG
Earth to Jackel. You want to buy something with a contract you agreed to and then the company says "Hold up, agree to this new contract or we're taking the stuff you bought already."? You thinks its fair to enter into an agreement and then down the road somebody says "I don't like our current arrangement so I'm changing it. Deal with it."? Well if you like that kinda stuff I'd love to do business with you because you could make me very rich. Like they say there really is a sucker born every minute.