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Steam must allow digital games to be resold, rules French court

Steam must allow digital games to be resold, rules French court

September 19, 2019 | By Alissa McAloon

September 19, 2019 | By Alissa McAloon
More: Console/PC, Social/Online

A French court has ruled against Valve at the close of a 2015 case, finding that a number of aspects of Steam aren’t up to snuff as far as the law is concerned.

The ruling marks the initial end of a suit brought against Valve by the French consumer organization UFC-Que Choisir, alleging that Valve’s storefront operates on several policies that are anti-consumer and arguably illegal. But, as Kotaku notes, Valve has plans to appeal the decision.

The most potentially impactful finding of the proceedings is that Valve, a purveyor of digital goods, must not block its users from being able to resell the digital games they buy on the platform.

If upheld, that decision could impact how digital games are managed in France and the European Union as a whole though nothing will play out until the appeal is said and done.

The court also took issue with fourteen overall clauses in Steam’s Subscriber Agreement, including Valve’s rules on its ownership of community-created content, its zero responsibility stance for cases when users have personal information stolen, and the fact that Steam doesn’t allow users to recoup money from their Steam Wallet if their account is closed, deleted, or banned.

Though Valve notes in its statement to Kotaku that no changes to Steam will be made until the appeal is settled, Valve will be liable for a fine of up to 3,000 Euros per day if it doesn’t change its rules within one month of the dust settling.

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