Valve: Accept New Steam Subscriber Agreement Or Disable Your Account

Earlier this month Valve updated the Steam subscriber agreement to include language that prevents customers with disputes from filing lawsuits against the company, and instead forces them to agree to the decisions of a Valve-paid-for “independent” arbitrator. As bad as that is, we are now getting reports that users are being told that they have to either submit to the new terms or have their accounts permanently deactivated, and in the process lose access to all the content they purchased through Steam.

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TiberiusGill2324d ago

Wow. Now that's messed up.
Is there any way that the article could include a link to the support forum where this post appeared, however? Would make verifying the story a little easier for approvers.

Pandamobile2324d ago (Edited 2324d ago )

It's like this with virtually any piece of commercial software. If you don't accept the TOS, you can't use the software. It's as simple as that.

Not that I agree with what Valve is doing though; but it doesn't affect me in any way.

adorie2324d ago

Doesn't matter. I don't think Valve is going to start stepping on the toes of their community.
They have a good reputation and this could be seen as a pre-emptive against trolls wanting to sue for a BS reason.

Besides, free will is still here... if they EFF you over, sell your Steam account and be done with it.
Although, they have not done any wrong to me and are usually willing to work with us... this does not affect me either.

Now, back to Torchlight.

shutUpAndTakeMyMoney2324d ago

so If gabe killed my dog I can't sue him?

BattleAxe2324d ago

I don't have much of a problem with the ToS. If Valve ever starts to do something that affects me and I don't like it, I won't buy anymore games from them....simple as that. I doubt I would go out of my way to sue them anyway.

ronin4life2324d ago

You can't sell your steam account outside of Europe.

da_2pacalypse2324d ago

Not sure why people are making a big deal out of this... It's valve, come on guys... they're like the nicest company in the gaming industry

nukeitall2324d ago

I trusted Valve, but this ain't good! Disabling your account and access to your games? Seriously?

This is as bad as EA, and I hope it is wrong!!!

SilentNegotiator2324d ago (Edited 2324d ago )

Steam is DRM. And bad DRM....because freaking ALL of your games are tied to it.

But hey, if something went wrong, I would just pirate all the games I purchased. I wouldn't even feel remotely bad about pirating under those circumstances.

BaconBits2323d ago

I agree with finding the games other ways but I would still lose ability to play online right?

FredEffinChopin2323d ago (Edited 2323d ago )

Actually it's not at all like this with any piece of commercial software. Most software is a piece of merchandise itself, with an agreement attached that is made upon purchase. Steam is a free service where people have *already paid lots of money* to "own" products that may no longer be accessed unless you agree to new terms that were not present when you originally made the deal. It's similar to what Sony did, except instead of being prohibited to use the PSN in the future as on the PS3, anyone here who doesn't agree with the terms loses everything they already paid for. I honestly see this as ground for a suit. But anyway, yeah, they're nothing alike. I think the crux of your statement though, whether you realize it or not, is right here:

"Not that I agree with what Valve is doing though; but it doesn't affect me in any way."

Let me ask, will it then be worth discussing if it happens to step on your own personal toes one day?

*edit* Also your comment is "not a reply". Sorry, but it isn't. People just commenting to the top comment for visibility is one of the things that makes the comments here such a mess to navigate. 80% of the replies on an article to one comment...

+ Show (6) more repliesLast reply 2323d ago
Irishguy952324d ago (Edited 2324d ago )

Kind of annoying in that way...I mean, what about all the games I've payed for on Steam up until now, if I don't want to accept the new agreements do I lose the games too?

I mean...I don't mind so much I don't care about new Tos because it doesn't affect, it's just annoying the way business gets done if you know what I mean.

TiberiusGill2324d ago

It's all take and no give. "We want things this way, and if you don't agree, don't be our customer."
You've gotta meet consumers half way and Steam don't care for that, apparently.

SilentNegotiator2324d ago

"It's all take and no give. "We want things this way, and if you don't agree, don't be our customer." "

Worse than that, it's...

"Agree with our terms or lose your hundreds/thousands of dollars worth of paid games"

Fierce Musashi2324d ago

Nasty. *sigh* Should I expect more things like this down the road? -_-'

Sony3602323d ago

This is why the new EU law is good. Whatever you have purchased is yours, and they have no right to steal it from you.

snipes1012324d ago

Another reason why I am very leery of digital distribution. They bought those games under the OLD TOS. Now, if they don't want to accept the new one (for whatever reasons) they get screwed out of games that they paid for. Doesn;t seem right to me.

Ducky2324d ago (Edited 2324d ago )

Steam is a form of DRM, so if you bought a game from steam (or one that uses steamworks), you'd have to comply with their new TOS. Doesn't matter if that game was originally bought as a physical disc or not.

If you bought your games from other digital distributors that don't use DRM (such as GOG), then you'll never run into this kind of problem.

You can similarly be locked out of online portions of your games on consoles if you don't comply with PSN/XBL TOS, or the game publisher's own TOS. (Although that isn't as bad as locking you out of the game completely like steam)
So the issue here isn't really about digital distribution.

vickers5002324d ago

Yeah, it still is. You may be locked out of online portions of your game on a console, but there's no way the publishers or devs can physically come to your house and take the disc away from you.

With discs, you can still play at least some of the game. With digital distribution, you wont be able to play any of it.

Ducky2324d ago (Edited 2324d ago )

^ As I said, the issue isn't digital distribution itself, it's the DRM that is on it.

There are digital retailers like GOG and GamersGate that don't use DRM, and as such, you'll always be able to play your game.

Furthermore, in the case of PC gaming, it wouldn't matter if you had a physical disc or not. EA, Blizzard or Valve don't need to snatch a physical disc from my hand, they'll just disable the account that the physical game was activated on (and that renders the entire thing unplayable).

snipes1012324d ago

Just because "that is how it is" doesnt make it right. If you paid for it, there should be no if's and's or but's about it. They should not have the right to just take it away from you like that - DRM or not.

Even if there were rules like this back in the PS1 and N64 days, at least the companies couldnt wirelessly lock you out of your shit if they decided to change policy and you didnt agree to it.

How are you okay with any of this?

Persistantthug2324d ago (Edited 2324d ago )

The point is, is with physical copies, you still have some power left.
You can still buy, sell, trade the copy at your own free will and leisure.

With digital, you pretty much forgo all of your power, such as with this....."DO WHAT WE SAY, OR WE'LL TAKE AWAY ALL OF YOUR SH17".

I'll keep my physicals, thanks.

Ducky2324d ago (Edited 2324d ago )


When did I say I was ok with any of this?

I'm just saying that the issue here isn't digital distribution itself.

If you want to argue about if it's right or not, then steam's agreement has always said that they reserve the right to change the terms and conditions at any time.
Whenever you buy a game, you are reminded of those terms, and you have to agree to them.

So since day-1, you have agreed that Valve can change the terms at any time, and you'd be fine with it. So why the surprise?


My point is, that in digital distribution, you don't necessarily have to do what they say.

snipes1012324d ago

I never agreed to anything because I dont use steam because I dont like digital distribution.

vickers5002324d ago

"There are digital retailers like GOG and GamersGate that don't use DRM, and as such, you'll always be able to play your game."

Until developers start making their games exclusive to a single distribution platform like Origin or Steam. Larger devs might look at EAs origin and make their own unwanted but necessary distribution service. Then most, if not all (probably not all, but most) games you would be forced to use their drm if you want to play the game.

"Furthermore, in the case of PC gaming, it wouldn't matter if you had a physical disc or not. EA, Blizzard or Valve don't need to snatch a physical disc from my hand, they'll just disable the account that the physical game was activated on (and that renders the entire thing unplayable)."

With digital distribution, devs can take away both sp and mp, with physical media, devs can only take away online, at least when it comes to consoles. With PC they can just implement drm onto the disc, so there's that problem, but I'm talking about a digital distribution future as a whole, not just for pc games. Digital distribution as a whole poses many problems.

So the issue still is with digital distribution, because if gaming goes DD only, then digital distribution and DRM will become one in the same, at least for most titles. You can get into technicalities like "it's drm/devs that's the problem, not dd", but the fact is, most big devs will force DRM into their games if digital distribution ever becomes the norm.

Ducky2324d ago (Edited 2324d ago )

^ Well, on PC, the dark future is already here. Blizzard, EA and Valve have their own respective platforms, while some publishers (Rockstar and Ubisoft) have their own DRMs.

Buying a game digitally or physically doesn't matter on PC because you end up in the same place.

Now, the reason I like to keep a distinction between DD and DRM is that one leads to the other, but you have it backwards. Devs didn't force DRM after DD, rather, they forced it before everything went digital.

If digital was to take over on consoles, then I think that DRM would have to arrive first, and that's where you'll lose your rights. Of course, I could be wrong and things might just directly go digital, but based on history, I have a feeling DRM-like practices would be first.

We're already seeing something similar on consoles now where it's becoming increasingly rare to just insert a disc and play without entering some code, whether for some locked single-player content or multiplayer.

Piracy was used as an excuse on PC. Used-games market is now used as an excuse for increasingly draconian measures on console games.

Other than that, it isn't impossible for Valve to allow people to keep playing their games under old TOS. Valve could allow users to sell their games too. They can give users the same freedoms as the Atari days. It's not an inherent element of DD to impose those restrictions.

vickers5002324d ago (Edited 2324d ago )

By itself, digital distribution doesn't necessarily mean DRM, obviously, but if the DD-only future comes, it's not coming alone, it will definitely be coming with DRM. It's kind of pointless to talk about both of them as if they were separate entities, because they wont be.

It will be up to the developers to decide whether or not you will get screwed over.

Digital Distribution in a perfect world would be fine, but we don't live in a perfect world, we live in a world full of greedy assholes who will do everything in their power to milk every last cent from the consumer that they possibly can, which is why you have to assume that DRM will come with the DD future. DD-only will bring about these service locked games, but at least with the physical media that we've already purchased on consoles and some pc games, we can still play those at any time we want(the single player aspect), and devs cant do anything about that, but if things were to switch over to digital distribution, I could lose the ability to play any of the game that I've purchased on my digital titles.

Digital only future is bad for gaming, at least in the world we live in.

I myself am actually fearing that one day, all those games I bought on PSN (like 300 dollars worth of stuff) will someday be taken down because they're old and Sony wont want to spend the money on the servers to keep the content up for download.

Sony3602323d ago

The problem isn't digital distribution, it's that they shouldn't have the right to block or change anything that you have paid for without your permission.

+ Show (7) more repliesLast reply 2323d ago
Elwenil2324d ago

Exactly. I think it's odd how people agree to a contract in good faith and then suddenly one party changes the contract without your permission and you get screwed and yet so many people think that is ok. Valve just lost me as a customer and probably a lot of other people as well.

Farsendor12324d ago

didn't sony do something like this a few years ago?

PirateThom2324d ago

Yes and people complained, but you could still play your games offline.

Wedge10822324d ago

Yes, but Sony let people opt-out.

beerkeg2323d ago

You can play your games offline with Steam.

Ocelot5252323d ago (Edited 2323d ago )

but you have to login after three days,

on the PS3 you never have to login to play your games

Farsendor12323d ago

that is one thing origin does do better then steam.

yes steam you can use offline mode it is iffy though sometimes it works sometime it don't

beerkeg2323d ago (Edited 2323d ago )

You know what, I didn't know that. I was under the impression that I could still play all my games even if I didn't have the internet anymore.

My attitude has changed tbh, that's pretty shitty. I've got most of my games through the sales, and I'm damned if I'm paying full price for anything from Steam anymore if this is the case.

EDIT:I'm sure I've used offline mode for more than 3 days before. I'll have to look into this, but I was off the internet for a few weeks last year and I could play every game I had installed.


shaun mcwayne2324d ago

Yeah you should be able to play the games you have already purchased without accepting new terms, If you dont accept new terms you cant buy new games.