Steam, banning players for being generous?

Gather

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Apr 9, 2009
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http://www.reddit.com/r/gaming/comments/fk90z/steam_support_bans_my_account_for_gifting/

Can't help but pray and think it's a hoax but;

http://i.imgur.com/r6zVW.png

A little introduction. During the Christmas sales of 2010, I gifted many non-American users Steam games at the American prices (Steam prices in USD for most games is a lot cheaper than the EUR/GBP price). The non-US person Paypals me X USD (X = the price of the game in USD), and I gift them the game. I did with around 20 people or so. Everyone is happy; the non-US player saves money, and Valve/the publisher is still getting paid for the game. I guess Valve wasn't so happy, however...

Has this ever happened to anyone here who helped European gamers save some cash by gifting them the games for cheaper? I am mainly surprised since I see nothing about it in their ToS, etc. (though I may have missed it). Valve and the publishers are technically not losing anything. Based on my account being banned, do you think the prices are just raised for non-US "because they can"? If it was due to currency conversion, why would they ban me? Just some food for thought...
(Taken from the link)
 

Chibz

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Sep 12, 2008
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Technically they ARE losing something. They can't rip off non-american gamers quite as easily if people do this. Part of why I won't have anything to do with Steam.
 

Blue_vision

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Not so much "being generous" as deliberately trying to cheat the system. Valve and the publisher may still be making money off of it, but that's like jacking someone's car, but leaving them $10.

EDIT: KAY BUDS, IT'S OBVIOUSLY A HYPERBOLE. The point is that someone's losing money out of this, and if you take a look further on in the thread we find that oh it's not greedy satanic Valve, turns out it's actually the governments that are paying for your lucky-ass European Healthcare and High Speed Rail. So please, unless you're going to argue that Valve should enable users to commit tax evasion through its system (while possibly facing pressure by European governments,) then feel free to flame beyond this point. If not, just take a look through the rest of the thread before hooking onto the single post that you disagree with, and with which tens of others have probably also disagreed with and required to be clarified.
 

Bobic

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If your steam account gets banned do you lose access to all the games you bought for yourself?
 

Gindil

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Bobic said:
If your steam account gets banned do you lose access to all the games you bought for yourself?
No. You just lose access to Steam secured servers.
 

Gather

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Blue_vision said:
Not so much "being generous" as deliberately trying to cheat the system. Valve and the publisher may still be making money off of it, but that's like jacking someone's car, but leaving them $10.
I don't know... That anology would be more correct if the care was say, 30,000 USD in America but 50,000 USD in Europe and the person who stole the car only gave 30,000 USD.

Edit: You paying for an agreed price on a game; be it that the price was lower than the price for the person it was given to...

Actually, for a better analogy: Ever bought something overseas because it was cheaper than buying it here? Steam just banned him for that (Apparently)


Bobic said:
If your steam account gets banned do you lose access to all the games you bought for yourself?
Yes.
 

Gindil

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Nov 28, 2009
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I'd better do this:

Link [https://support.steampowered.com/kb_article.php?ref=4044-QDHJ-5691]

Your account may still be used to play single-player games and multiplayer games on unsecured servers

Your account may still be used to play single-player games or to connect to non-secure game servers and for games played over a LAN. To find non-secure servers, please change your filter settings in the server browser list to show servers which are not VAC-secured (from the Steam main menu go to the View option, select Servers and then select "Not secure" in the Anti-Cheat drop-down).
NOTE: Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 does not have non-secure server
 

Gather

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Bobic said:
Gindil said:
Bobic said:
If your steam account gets banned do you lose access to all the games you bought for yourself?
No. You just lose access to Steam secured servers.
Gather said:
Bobic said:
If your steam account gets banned do you lose access to all the games you bought for yourself?
Yes.
Ok, one of you heartless fiends is lying to me.
Uh... Well, without research I'll retract my answer.
 

Blue_vision

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Gather said:
I don't know... That anology would be more correct if the care was say, 30,000 USD in America but 50,000 USD in Europe and the person who stole the car only gave 30,000 USD.

Edit: You paying for an agreed price on a game; be it that the price was lower than the price for the person it was given to...

Actually, for a better analogy: Ever bought something overseas because it was cheaper than buying it here? Steam just banned him for that (Apparently)
Okay, perhaps a better analogy would be someone importing a bunch of dvds from china or something, and then selling them inside a local electronics store at half price. I'd say that the store owners are right within their legal/moral grounds to kick the guy out of the store.
 

Outright Villainy

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Jan 19, 2010
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Gindil said:
Bobic said:
If your steam account gets banned do you lose access to all the games you bought for yourself?
No. You just lose access to Steam secured servers.
That's a VAC ban. I'm pretty sure this kind of ban disables all your games.

The conversion rate of not converting at all is extremely dickish on Valve's part.
 

lokialex

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Oct 20, 2010
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My old account with about 20 games that I had payed for was banned because of a screw-up at my bank and no one would do anything about it. Steam told me to talk to the bank and the bank told me to talk to steam.

For the record yeah I have no access to my games.
I was incredibly pissed.
 

Bobic

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Nov 10, 2009
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Gather said:
Bobic said:
Gindil said:
Bobic said:
If your steam account gets banned do you lose access to all the games you bought for yourself?
No. You just lose access to Steam secured servers.
Gather said:
Bobic said:
If your steam account gets banned do you lose access to all the games you bought for yourself?
Yes.
Ok, one of you heartless fiends is lying to me.
Uh... Well, without research I'll retract my answer.
You know, you really shouldn't answer questions when you don't actually know the answer. If it weren't for Gindil, god bless his soul, I would have been completely mislead.

Edit: Wait! It appears that others have provided evidence proving your case. You may be right afterall.
 

DirgeNovak

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Jul 23, 2008
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I'll quote an insightful comment from the link...

gareth321 said:
I wish more people would take a basic contract law class. Unreasonable clauses - primarily clauses which contract out of existing contract law - are unenforceable. Terminating an account which a person has paid for and reasonably expects to be able to use is a violation of the contract. It doesn't matter if Valve includes the clause "we may cancel your account and fuck you up the ass whenever we feel like it*. Neither stipulations are legal, and therefore any consumer could sue for the value of the games. Perhaps even punitive damages, since that would be shady as fuck.
If being banned indeed removes access to your purchased games, it's definitely a lawsuit situation. And nobody would call it frivolous.

But more OT, what this guy did was shady, but I highly doubt it's illegal. Since he bought the game, he owns it, and can sell it to anyone he wants. If Valve wants to fuck non-americans over with their stupid prices, consumers have a right to look for a better price.
 

No_Remainders

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Sep 11, 2009
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Gindil said:
Bobic said:
If your steam account gets banned do you lose access to all the games you bought for yourself?
No. You just lose access to Steam secured servers.
Nah, that's if you get VAC banned. I think if your account gets banned you get banned... I think.
 

AndyFromMonday

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Feb 5, 2009
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Blue_vision said:
Not so much "being generous" as deliberately trying to cheat the system. Valve and the publisher may still be making money off of it, but that's like jacking someone's car, but leaving them $10.
What the fuck are you talking about? Valve was cheating the system in the first place by not adjusting the currency. They were essentially cheating European customers and when an American one decides to help them out Valve bans him.

It seems Valve isn't the paragon of virtue everyone though it was.
 

Woodsey

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Aug 9, 2009
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Hmm, never heard about this before - and I can't imagine it's the first time someone's gifted across continents, and I can't believe that no one saw this happening when they introduced gifting; nor can I believe that they wouldn't simply prevent you from doing it if it wasn't allowed, since Steam localises itself to your IP address.

EDIT: Just realised what was actually happening. Publishers set the prices by region, and this person was technically selling something that's not actually theirs to sell.

I doubt it's technically illegal, but I'm not exactly going to give him/her the moral highground either.

Just gifting games if perfectly fine, and your thread title is actually rather misleading.
 

HontooNoNeko

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Nov 29, 2009
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Can't say I blame steam here there is no way to verify that he received exactly the amount of the game. Steam has no way of knowing if he was charging more or not leaving the possibility of him making a profit on intellectual property without steams consent. So steam may be in the wrong considering no one was really unhappy about the deal but from a business standpoint I can see why they banned him.
 

Zer_

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Feb 7, 2008
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Gather said:
http://www.reddit.com/r/gaming/comments/fk90z/steam_support_bans_my_account_for_gifting/

Can't help but pray and think it's a hoax but;

http://i.imgur.com/r6zVW.png

A little introduction. During the Christmas sales of 2010, I gifted many non-American users Steam games at the American prices (Steam prices in USD for most games is a lot cheaper than the EUR/GBP price). The non-US person Paypals me X USD (X = the price of the game in USD), and I gift them the game. I did with around 20 people or so. Everyone is happy; the non-US player saves money, and Valve/the publisher is still getting paid for the game. I guess Valve wasn't so happy, however...

Has this ever happened to anyone here who helped European gamers save some cash by gifting them the games for cheaper? I am mainly surprised since I see nothing about it in their ToS, etc. (though I may have missed it). Valve and the publishers are technically not losing anything. Based on my account being banned, do you think the prices are just raised for non-US "because they can"? If it was due to currency conversion, why would they ban me? Just some food for thought...
(Taken from the link)
Maybe you should read a little further. The guy was circumventing Steam. He was receiving money through PayPal (in USD) so he can use that money and purchase games for Europeans. He wasn't really gifting them anything. Buying a game, and gifting overseas is perfectly fine (The Steam TOS says so). What this user was doing is against the terms of service.