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Old 07-13-2016, 05:35 PM   #1
Emabulator
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Valve Addresses Gambling Allegations, Takes Steps to Shut Down Sites #CSGO #Steam


GameSpot has the story.

Quote:
Following the filing of a lawsuit and a scandal involving a Counter-Strike gambling website, Valve has spoken out on the subject and revealed its intention to shut down these types of sites.

"In 2011, we added a feature to Steam that enabled users to trade in-game items as a way to make it easier for people to get the items they wanted in games featuring in-game economies," Valve's Erik Johnson explained in a statement shared with GameSpot. "Since then a number of gambling sites started leveraging the Steam trading system, and there's been some false assumptions about our involvement with these sites."

The recent lawsuit alleged that Valve "knowingly allowed ... and has been complicit in creating, sustaining, and facilitating a market" where Counter-Strike: Global Offensive skins can be gambled. It claims the company did this by providing these sites with access to Steam accounts.

That litigation is pending, but Valve has now made it clear where it stands on the allegations.

"We'd like to clarify that we have no business relationships with any of these sites," Johnson said. "We have never received any revenue from them. And Steam does not have a system for turning in-game items into real world currency," he said, directly conflicting a statement in the lawsuit that said this was possible.
Read on.
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Old 07-14-2016, 08:17 AM   #2
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I think Valve does not get off scot-free here.

They were most certainly aware of CS skin gambling on their system for a long time. The volume of trades from gambling sites would be the lion's share of operations on their system. Trade volume requires system resources, so there was a material hardware cost to Valve, which they must have felt was worth spending to gain profit from the outcome of those trades.

I believe there is a fee for skin transfers. So they had plenty of reason to continue allowing gambling sites to operate.

I am no subject matter expert on law, or their skin xfer system, but it seems to me like even though you can't cash a skin out for $ through their system, it sure seems like they are saying items have cash value:
https://steamcommunity.com/market/se..._gut&appid=730

Once you have funds in your steam wallet, I believe you can buy games with your balance.

So I think this charge has some legitimacy: Valve knowingly allowed ... and is therefore complicit in sustaining, and facilitating a market where Counter-Strike: Global Offensive skins can be gambled.

I'm willing to be wrong here. Tell me why I'm mistaken.
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Old 07-14-2016, 09:24 AM   #3
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So what, gambling like this *should* be legal, there are no victims here.
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Old 07-14-2016, 10:40 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Anenome View Post
So what, gambling like this *should* be legal, there are no victims here.
Dude, you do realize that kids were doing it, right?
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Old 07-14-2016, 10:41 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Demo_Boy View Post
I'm willing to be wrong here. Tell me why I'm mistaken.
I don't think you are wrong. Steam appears to be trying to PR it's way out through legal speak, but there is a serious hole in their logic.

It is true that any funds made through the Steam marketplace are little more than store credit. You can't cash your steam wallet out, you can only use the contents on Steam and that's it. However, Valve takes a % off the top of all sales, and I'm pretty sure they don't use that as Steam store credit.

In other words, Valve is correct in that their marketplace does not allow players to convert these skins into real-world cash... It just allows Valve to do it.

Oops.

It can also be said that Valve allows 3rd party sites to facilitate cash trades outside of the marketplace, through the Steam API.

I agree that they are complicit, but I doubt they will suffer any real consequences (if it turns out this is illegal). As we have seen in recent weeks, the rich don't play by the same rules as we do when it comes to things illegal. If you have good lawyers and a lot of cash, you can pretty much do anything you want.
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Old 07-14-2016, 11:21 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by PacerDawn View Post
Dude, you do realize that kids were doing it, right?
What, kids can't gamble now? Do they not have parents? If a kid is wasting his own cash I don't have a problem with that, gotta learn somehow.

My little brother was playing people 3v1 in Smash Bros when he was 15 for $50 a head, and he played Jigglypuff every single time. Financed his entire teenage years that way, dude was rolling in dough.
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Old 07-14-2016, 12:31 PM   #7
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If it's adults, I don't care. If it's kids, their parents are responsible, so I don't care.

Either way, it's a non-issue of either adults spending their money in a way that I consider foolish but they are free to do, or adults failing to set up password protections and other safeguards against their kids blowing their dough. I have six kids. They've never spent a dime of my money on anything without my knowing about it, and we have Kindles, computers, DSs, phones, etc., etc., etc..

Non-issue.
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