Retailers want to ban Steam

Discussion in 'Digital Distribution & Mobile Game Applications' started by PhatFreD, Nov 12, 2010.

  1. NackaJeem

    NackaJeem Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2004
    Messages:
    379
    Likes Received:
    31
    Location:
    Melbourne - Eastern suburbs
    I've pretty much given up on bricks and mortar game stores. They have lost touch IMO with the pricing that goes on in cyberspace. I giggle at the amount of money they want for 12-month old titles and they usually have some of the current crop but I'm not paying $90.00 AUD for any game, I'm just not that keen. The price invariably drops in Steam anyway so I tend to buy them then.

    Steam's great. I have all of my games in one place, they stay updated, I don't have a stack of discs and boxes lying around and I can either back-up the entire directory through the Steam client or just copy it straight to a backup drive.

    A bricks and mortar retailer would have to drastically change their business model for me to even give them a second look. If their current model was competitive, they wouldn't be bleating.
     
    2_islands likes this.
  2. Draadnor

    Draadnor Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2008
    Messages:
    2,174
    Likes Received:
    904
    Location:
    Gold Coast (GMT +10)
    According to what I've been told, when looking to make a complaint to Consumer Affairs, is that purchases made online are subject to the laws of the state you live in. Therefore Steam (Valve) would at least theoretically be able to be taken to court in your state.......if they have broken local laws.
     
  3. PhatFreD

    PhatFreD Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2007
    Messages:
    2,679
    Likes Received:
    168
    Location:
    Capricorn, QLD
    I thought that it isn't actually Steam that is the culprit here. Rather the other part that is pushing Steam/Valve to charge more in Australia. I am not sure who the other part is and why they have the power to make Steam change their prices here in Australia.
     
  4. Draadnor

    Draadnor Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2008
    Messages:
    2,174
    Likes Received:
    904
    Location:
    Gold Coast (GMT +10)
    Well, you're right in that it is more like anticompetitive behavior or maybe collusion between wholesaler and Valve (Drac's post is most relevant here I think). But the point is that they are BOTH responsible as Valve 'sells' here in Australia. Maybe we should all individually approach the ACCC?

    I work for a big multinational that was fined millions for price fixing and now everyone has to do online courses in competition and behavior. Was interesting but largly irrelevant to engineers :)
     
  5. Double Supercool

    Double Supercool Just Joined

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2006
    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Canberra, Australia
    Region pricing per se (in and of itself) is not a breach of the TPA. People can charge whatever price they see fit. Steam can charge $500 a game if they wanted. Steam saying to developers "you must not sell bellow X dollars" COULD be an issue if Steam were a corporation in Australia. Given that they are based in the USA, they would fall outside of ACCC jurisdiction.

    *Generally* you go on the laws of the land where the company is based. Not all the time, but as a rule of thumb. Eg, if I buy bike parts from the UK and there is something wrong with them, I have no Australian consumer protection rights. I would have to deal with someone like the Office of Fair Trading in the UK.

    As for price fixing, it is extremely, extremely tough to prove. You basically have to show that there has been agreements or "meetings" of the mind between *competitors* to act in an agreed way. Two or three companies simply having the same prices is not price fixing (see Coles/Woolworths, the fuel companies - highly competitive industries where competition among individual outlets is high and they respond quickly - leading to cries of "collusion")

    The issue I have with region pricing is not really an ACCC issue, it's basically a service issue. When your service is digital and you strip away all the factors that add $ to delivering a physical product (like a TV), any kind of price add has to be seen for what it is: Demanding more money for no additional benefit.
     
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2010
    theZee likes this.
  6. wHiTeRaSTa

    wHiTeRaSTa Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2008
    Messages:
    1,311
    Likes Received:
    112
    Location:
    CoffsCoast
    When you think of it, even though we will get rorted by the henchmens price fixing...buying through steam is just to easy. No shops/driving/postage/effort. Definately doesn't look like a great future for retailers in this one.
     
  7. Xavien

    Xavien Retired Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2004
    Messages:
    1,025
    Likes Received:
    24
    Location:
    UK
    I know alot of you guys only use steam to buy games with (i actually do buy from retail if its cheaper (normally for me it is) although download only games like Guardian of Light and Blade Kitten ive bought from steam, although i play all my non steam games through steam to so i can keep my games all neat and tidy on my pc, but reading hadrains post reminded me of something, one thing ive noticed about demos on steam is that steam doesnt always have a full list of demos. Sometimes if a new game comes out and it doesnt have a demo on steam that doesnt mean there isnt one so always to a search for one. Just a little tip :)
     

Share This Page