Valve Software Bullying Cybercafes

from the fun-for-the-whole-family dept

Ernest Miller writes “Yesterday, Valve CEO Gabe Newell thanked the gaming coummunity for helping to catch those responsible for the theft of Half-Life 2 code by saying, “Everyone here at Valve is once again reminded of how much we owe to the gaming community.” What he didn’t say was that Valve was demonstrating its appreciation by threatening to sue a cybercafe that was offering Valve’s Counter-Strike as one of the games people could play. Companies like Microsoft often let cybercafes offer their games as long as they buy each copy of the game they use. At the other end of the scale, Valve charges more than most cybercafes can afford to let them use 5-year old, freely downloadable as a mod, games. Furthermore, instead of merely sending a cease and desist letter (“knock it off or we will sue”), Valve sent a prepay us for a license or we’ll sue letter. In other words, unless the cybercafe pays for a one-year license, they will be sued. The next time you don’t find any Valve games at your local LAN center, you’ll know why. Perhaps fans of LAN gaming and the professional gaming leagues ought to consider whether Valve’s aggressive, overbearing stance towards LAN centers is helpful to the gaming community or not. “

Rate this comment as insightful
Rate this comment as funny
You have rated this comment as insightful
You have rated this comment as funny
Flag this comment as abusive/trolling/spam
You have flagged this comment
The first word has already been claimed
The last word has already been claimed
Insightful Lightbulb icon Funny Laughing icon Abusive/trolling/spam Flag icon Insightful badge Lightbulb icon Funny badge Laughing icon Comments icon

Comments on “Valve Software Bullying Cybercafes”

Subscribe: RSS Leave a comment
Jeremiah (user link) says:

yes, butt....

I think Valve’s issue had something to do with the concept of ‘resell’.

Basically, their license grants you the right to play the game whenever, wherever. What you *cannot* do, however, is resell the game in a retail context: Valve sees selling time on PC’s as a resell of their product. In other words, they only get paid once, and another party can continue to exploit their work *FOR PROFIT* without allowing the creators to share in the proceeds derived from their work.

It’s an interesting turnaround if you look at it through the music-biz lens: the artists/creators (Valve) are seeing their work generating revenue for licensee’s (record companies) and their being denied the opportunity to enjoy the fruits of their labors.

I hope that makes sense…

Add Your Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here

Comment Options:

Make this the or (get credits or sign in to see balance) what's this?

What's this?

Techdirt community members with Techdirt Credits can spotlight a comment as either the "First Word" or "Last Word" on a particular comment thread. Credits can be purchased at the Techdirt Insider Shop »

Follow Techdirt

Techdirt Daily Newsletter

Techdirt Deals
Techdirt Insider Discord
The latest chatter on the Techdirt Insider Discord channel...