Valve Serves Notice on 23 Steam Gambling Sites

ffronw

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Valve Serves Notice on 23 Steam Gambling Sites

//cdn.themis-media.com/media/global/images/library/deriv/1337/1337399.jpgValve is directing gambling sites tied to Steam to stop using accounts for commercial purposes.

There's been plenty of controversy lately centered around gambling site for Steam games, especially Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. After it came to light that some of the personalities promoting these sites also owned them, Valve spoke out, officially condemning item gambling [http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/167931-Valve-Official-Stance-on-Steam-Gambling]. Now they've taken the next step, issuing cease and desist letters to 23 gambling sites.

The Twitter [http://i.imgur.com/P9S6RWT.jpg] by the official account of one of the affected sites, CSGOBig.com. The post also indicated that the site would be closing "temporarily." Also named in the letter sent by Valve were 22 other sites, including CSGOLotto.com and CSGOLounge.com. There's even one DOTA 2 site on the list.

The letter directs the sites to "immediately cease and desist further use of your Steam accounts for any commercial purpose." There is also a strict deadline imposed. "If you fail to do this within ten (10) days Valve will pursue all available remedies including without limitation terminating your accounts."

As of now, some of the sites have already closed down. CSGOLOtto.com shut down on July 8 after being named in a lawsuit filed by a user. CSGODouble.com and CSDices.com both said last week that they would no longer be accepting deposits. CSGOWealth, which is not named in the letter, has gone with something less subtle, changing their site to a white page that simply reads, "Rip CSGOWealth. Blame Valve."

The recent revelations in the CS:GO community have been like a large rock dropped into a pond, and the ripples are still spreading. Twitch recently banned streaming these sites [http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/167947-Twitch-Ban-Steam-Gambling-Sites] as well.

It's interesting to note that Valve isn't calling any of those sites "gambling sites." Instead they're focusing on the violation of the Steam Subscriber Agreement, which is well within their purview. Only time will tell how this one will end, but it's not looking good for the folks who run the sites in question.



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Scarim Coral

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You know, I just remember that news weeks ago when two Youtube guys were reveal to self promoting these gambling sites despite not mentioning they owned it to the public (especially in one case one of them was able to get an ultra rare item in one bet). Quick search reveal that the site they own is in the notice so I guess it was karma!
 

Saelune

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Why yes, I will blame Valve...for doing the right thing...eventually...mostly to save their own asses...but hey, the outcome is still positive.

EDIT: For the uninformed, H3H3's video explaining everything.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_8fU2QG-lV0
 

Sonicron

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Saelune said:
Why yes, I will blame Valve...for doing the right thing...eventually...mostly to save their own asses...but hey, the outcome is still positive.
Agreed. The motivation probably mostly comes from trying to save face, but if that's what it takes to improve the situation as a whole then I'll take it.
Tmartn and his ilk can fuck off to the dark pit that spawned them and engage in perpetual anal razorwire sodomy.
 

BeerTent

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Saelune said:
Why yes, I will blame Valve...for doing the right thing...eventually...mostly to save their own asses...but hey, the outcome is still positive.
It may be possible that they had no idea the gambling was going on. I heard only of it just after the controversy hit. I don't think it's unreasonable for someone to sit down and say, "Hold up. What CAN we do, what SHOULD we do?"

I don't think it's unreasonable, the time that they took to finally come out and round up as many as they could to take action. More-so when you consider their previous track record for Quality Control. But on the flip-side... If their QC had of been better, maaaaybe this entire controversy could have been avoided entirely. I can't be the only one who might see that, and think, "That can't be right. Someone should probably know about this."
 

Saelune

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BeerTent said:
Saelune said:
Why yes, I will blame Valve...for doing the right thing...eventually...mostly to save their own asses...but hey, the outcome is still positive.
It may be possible that they had no idea the gambling was going on. I heard only of it just after the controversy hit. I don't think it's unreasonable for someone to sit down and say, "Hold up. What CAN we do, what SHOULD we do?"

I don't think it's unreasonable, the time that they took to finally come out and round up as many as they could to take action. More-so when you consider their previous track record for Quality Control. But on the flip-side... If their QC had of been better, maaaaybe this entire controversy could have been avoided entirely. I can't be the only one who might see that, and think, "That can't be right. Someone should probably know about this."
There is no way they did not know...and if they did not know, that is also pretty bad on them to be so oblivious.

There is no positive spin for letting this happen in the first place.
 

FalloutJack

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Not particularly concerned because I don't gamble, so whatever controversy surrounding this there is, it has little impact on my personally. Ergo, the end result is all that is overall important.
 

Xeorm

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Still never saw anything wrong with them gambling. People choosing what to do with their money is bad? Sure, the scams that brought on all the attention were scams, but what's wrong with gambling itself?
 

Infernal Lawyer

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Xeorm said:
Still never saw anything wrong with them gambling. People choosing what to do with their money is bad? Sure, the scams that brought on all the attention were scams, but what's wrong with gambling itself?
You should probably ask the states that have extremely strict laws on gambling, especially those that don't look kindly on gambling being marketed to children.

ffronw said:
It's interesting to note that Valve isn't calling any of those sites "gambling sites." Instead they're focusing on the violation of the Steam Subscriber Agreement, which is well within their purview.
The letter clearly says "We are aware that you own one of the gambling sites listed below." Or were you talking about in official statements?
 

Vigormortis

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Saelune said:
There is no way they did not know...and if they did not know, that is also pretty bad on them to be so oblivious.
Uh....how would they have known? How could they have known?

Genuinely asking. Please explain.

There is no positive spin for letting this happen in the first place.
But how does one prevent a thing from happening when you are unaware it is taking place?

I ask these things not because I'm trying to 'get Valve off the hook', but rather because I genuinely do not understand why are you making these claims.
 

ffronw

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You guys realize this is not the "right thing"? By including sites like DOTA2lounge they just killed off a large part of their scene. The part which doesn't have Valve funded million dollar price pools to sustain it.

Fittingly, CSGO will be hit harder than DOTA 2. DOTA at least gets some moderate form of developer attention to keep it alive.
 

ffronw

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Vigormortis said:
Saelune said:
There is no way they did not know...and if they did not know, that is also pretty bad on them to be so oblivious.
Uh....how would they have known? How could they have known?

Genuinely asking. Please explain.
Gambling sites made millions of dollars a month. Millions. If you added them all up its probably a billion dollar industry. All of them were using the Steam API, trading through Steam, making use of the Steam marketplace. They were sponsoring every professional player, team or stream out there. All of those have a direct contact inside Valve. Of course they knew it was happening.
 

BeerTent

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Saelune said:
BeerTent said:
Saelune said:
Why yes, I will blame Valve...for doing the right thing...eventually...mostly to save their own asses...but hey, the outcome is still positive.
It may be possible that they had no idea the gambling was going on. I heard only of it just after the controversy hit. I don't think it's unreasonable for someone to sit down and say, "Hold up. What CAN we do, what SHOULD we do?"

I don't think it's unreasonable, the time that they took to finally come out and round up as many as they could to take action. More-so when you consider their previous track record for Quality Control. But on the flip-side... If their QC had of been better, maaaaybe this entire controversy could have been avoided entirely. I can't be the only one who might see that, and think, "That can't be right. Someone should probably know about this."
There is no way they did not know...and if they did not know, that is also pretty bad on them to be so oblivious.

There is no positive spin for letting this happen in the first place.
I'm not arguing that there's a positive spin, I'm just trying to think as to why it got to this point. Keep in mind, Valve needs to monitor a massive influx of games, DLC, Website API requests, and greenlight submissions every day. That's a lot. Can it be handled better? You bet your ass it can, but this is the reality of the situation. They're woefully under-equipped for that.

And then we also have Steam groups. Unchecked. I've already found a KKK Steam group that (I take that back, they're probably not serious.) (Apparently they REALLY like basketball.)
We also have new Steam accounts, and Steam Profile pages. If I change my profile page 20 times today, should a Valve employee need to sign off on it?
What about new accounts? Steam itself is free. How many new accounts do you think they go through every day from new users alone? What about Ex-cheaters? How many abuses of the API are they looking for?

Steam isn't a closed service of 5000 people. It's a really open service of hundreds of thousands of concurrent users. If one person were to abuse the loving Christ of the system, you won't see the processing power of the server spike. They have hundreds of servers for all of these users. On top of that, who do you pay to browse the internet? Someone who moderates what other websites do would have to be paid if it's their job. What does that person look for? Is it specifically cheating websites? Or Gambling websites? Do they even have a system in place for tracking every time a website tries to do something on steam? Even then, how difficult would it be to have a 3rd party program access Steam when a user clicks a button on the website? I haven't prodded much at all into this gambling stuff, so I don't know what it's like to log into one.

Even for a company as large as, say, Microsoft, or Apple... Even if they owned Steam... I still think that this would have still happened. Realistically, it's a pretty damn tall order to root something out like this as it's starting up.
 

Johnny Novgorod

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Pirate Of PC Master race said:
Valve wrapping up the whole "grey area steam market vitalization" thing?

About time.
Let me tell you what's not on time - Half Life 3.
 

Saelune

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Vigormortis said:
Saelune said:
There is no way they did not know...and if they did not know, that is also pretty bad on them to be so oblivious.
Uh....how would they have known? How could they have known?

Genuinely asking. Please explain.

There is no positive spin for letting this happen in the first place.
But how does one prevent a thing from happening when you are unaware it is taking place?

I ask these things not because I'm trying to 'get Valve off the hook', but rather because I genuinely do not understand why are you making these claims.
If the gambling was a secret, then they wouldn't have been successful. This wasn't a hush hush behind closed doors with secret passwords, nor was it just some friends making personal bets. It was a super profitable business.

The second point is moot since I have no doubt they were aware of it.

BeerTent said:
Saelune said:
BeerTent said:
Saelune said:
Why yes, I will blame Valve...for doing the right thing...eventually...mostly to save their own asses...but hey, the outcome is still positive.
It may be possible that they had no idea the gambling was going on. I heard only of it just after the controversy hit. I don't think it's unreasonable for someone to sit down and say, "Hold up. What CAN we do, what SHOULD we do?"

I don't think it's unreasonable, the time that they took to finally come out and round up as many as they could to take action. More-so when you consider their previous track record for Quality Control. But on the flip-side... If their QC had of been better, maaaaybe this entire controversy could have been avoided entirely. I can't be the only one who might see that, and think, "That can't be right. Someone should probably know about this."
There is no way they did not know...and if they did not know, that is also pretty bad on them to be so oblivious.

There is no positive spin for letting this happen in the first place.
I'm not arguing that there's a positive spin, I'm just trying to think as to why it got to this point. Keep in mind, Valve needs to monitor a massive influx of games, DLC, Website API requests, and greenlight submissions every day. That's a lot. Can it be handled better? You bet your ass it can, but this is the reality of the situation. They're woefully under-equipped for that.

And then we also have Steam groups. Unchecked. I've already found a KKK Steam group that (I take that back, they're probably not serious.) (Apparently they REALLY like basketball.)
We also have new Steam accounts, and Steam Profile pages. If I change my profile page 20 times today, should a Valve employee need to sign off on it?
What about new accounts? Steam itself is free. How many new accounts do you think they go through every day from new users alone? What about Ex-cheaters? How many abuses of the API are they looking for?

Steam isn't a closed service of 5000 people. It's a really open service of hundreds of thousands of concurrent users. If one person were to abuse the loving Christ of the system, you won't see the processing power of the server spike. They have hundreds of servers for all of these users. On top of that, who do you pay to browse the internet? Someone who moderates what other websites do would have to be paid if it's their job. What does that person look for? Is it specifically cheating websites? Or Gambling websites? Do they even have a system in place for tracking every time a website tries to do something on steam? Even then, how difficult would it be to have a 3rd party program access Steam when a user clicks a button on the website? I haven't prodded much at all into this gambling stuff, so I don't know what it's like to log into one.

Even for a company as large as, say, Microsoft, or Apple... Even if they owned Steam... I still think that this would have still happened. Realistically, it's a pretty damn tall order to root something out like this as it's starting up.
Personally I think Valve just doesn't care and lets people do what they want, which is why so many Steam groups are well, messed up. I don't think they don't know, I think Valve has just devolved into a money grubbing whore with no spine until it actually gets to them being potentially sued.

They are small because they choose to be. They are not lacking the money to expand.
 

Vigormortis

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Saelune said:
If the gambling was a secret, then they wouldn't have been successful. This wasn't a hush hush behind closed doors with secret passwords, nor was it just some friends making personal bets. It was a super profitable business.
Right, but it wasn't an issue until it came to light that the sites were A: making use of certain aspects of the SteamID API, which was a violation of the Terms of Use, and B: many of the sites were owned by the same pro players who were promoting the sites.

Valve's response is in regards to those 2 points, not that the gambling sites existed. The essence of the sites, i.e. item betting, isn't in violation of any of the Terms of Use and therefore isn't an issue. The specifics are the issue.

The second point is moot since I have no doubt they were aware of it.
But again, why? Why are you 'so sure'? There's no evidence they knew before hand, and their response to the issues (which, for those in the know, began before their public statement) started when they came to learn about the two points I mentioned above.

This seems almost like paranoia. Like saying, "This whole thing is questionable, of course Valve knew about it because we can't trust Valve!" It's like when everyone insisted EA was spying on our PCs with Origin because, "They're EA! Of course they are!" There was no rhyme or reason to it, no evidence backing it, just "EA is evil, so it's true!" Are you really impl...

Personally I think Valve just doesn't care and lets people do what they want, which is why so many Steam groups are well, messed up. I don't think they don't know, I think Valve has just devolved into a money grubbing whore with no spine until it actually gets to them being potentially sued.
Ah, right. I see. Never mind, then. I've lost interest in the conversation. Good day.
 

BeerTent

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Saelune said:
[...]

BeerTent said:
Saelune said:
BeerTent said:
Saelune said:
Why yes, I will blame Valve...for doing the right thing...eventually...mostly to save their own asses...but hey, the outcome is still positive.
[...]

Even for a company as large as, say, Microsoft, or Apple... Even if they owned Steam... I still think that this would have still happened. Realistically, it's a pretty damn tall order to root something out like this as it's starting up.
Personally I think Valve just doesn't care and lets people do what they want, which is why so many Steam groups are well, messed up. I don't think they don't know, I think Valve has just devolved into a money grubbing whore with no spine until it actually gets to them being potentially sued.

They are small because they choose to be. They are not lacking the money to expand.
Okay, there is one thing I want to nit-pick, and I might be digressing a little bit here, but, it needs to be said.

Valve is a business. A business is in it to make money. You ensure the green revenue number is a bigger number than the red expenditures number. You do this by doing everything in your power to make the money flowing in, and everything in your power to not spend things. To say that Valve... devolved is like saying that they didn't start as a business. They didn't start as a studio. That Half-Life was just free before they just decided one day that, "We have no love anymore. Funnel us money." They're a business, they started as a business, and the objective of every single business is to make money. You calling them money-grubbers is no different than the kids in high-school saying like, Linkin Park was cool before they totally sold out.

Onto the important part. Now, we both, know, that there's some strangely janky shit in the steam Community. KKK playing NBA to some odd Russian group revolving around what appears to be S&M. And they like Hotline Miami. But if we look at the main list for Steam Community groups, we get a page of 50 groups, and there's just under 3 million pages. Now, a lot of these groups are game groups, and it's on the developer to moderate those, but Valve, in the end, has, or is supposed to, have authority over these groups. It's Steam. Let's see how many groups that is that they have to moderate.

(The amount of pages.) x (Results per page.) = (Highball result.)
2,923,950 x 50 = 146,197,500
That's a hundred and forty six Million user-groups that a small team has to moderate.

I can't even imagine moderating the 500 at the end of that. I've worked and moderated sites about the half the size of The Escapist. Game servers, what-have you...

And this is user groups alone. How many fucking Greenlight submissions get tossed in per day? How many before a company decided to have automation take over because the workload is too much, and we need to limit ourselves to spot-checks? New game releases from unknown publishers even? Remember, the initial goal of Greenlight was to let the community decide. If the community wants a game where you take a shit on people from a balcony... Who knows? Balcony Shitter 2k16 could be the next Warframe.

I understand where your coming from, and it's not unreasonable to want quality control in an industry where Aliens: Colonial Marines is a passable product. Where customers are paying to be Beta Testers for Early Access games. But we also need to understand that Steam has grown to be this monolith, this super-massive beast of millions of people on at all times. It's just not possible to moderate every little bit at all times. And the ugly side of things is that when you do spot-checks... Well... You'll catch some, but miss a lot. As of 2013, Valve was only 330 employees large. That's not nearly enough, even if every single one was dedicated to the task.
 

Saelune

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Vigormortis said:
Saelune said:
If the gambling was a secret, then they wouldn't have been successful. This wasn't a hush hush behind closed doors with secret passwords, nor was it just some friends making personal bets. It was a super profitable business.
Right, but it wasn't an issue until it came to light that the sites were A: making use of certain aspects of the SteamID API, which was a violation of the Terms of Use, and B: many of the sites were owned by the same pro players who were promoting the sites.

Valve's response is in regards to those 2 points, not that the gambling sites existed. The essence of the sites, i.e. item betting, isn't in violation of any of the Terms of Use and therefore isn't an issue. The specifics are the issue.

The second point is moot since I have no doubt they were aware of it.
But again, why? Why are you 'so sure'? There's no evidence they knew before hand, and their response to the issues (which, for those in the know, began before their public statement) started when they came to learn about the two points I mentioned above.

This seems almost like paranoia. Like saying, "This whole thing is questionable, of course Valve knew about it because we can't trust Valve!" It's like when everyone insisted EA was spying on our PCs with Origin because, "They're EA! Of course they are!" There was no rhyme or reason to it, no evidence backing it, just "EA is evil, so it's true!" Are you really impl...

Personally I think Valve just doesn't care and lets people do what they want, which is why so many Steam groups are well, messed up. I don't think they don't know, I think Valve has just devolved into a money grubbing whore with no spine until it actually gets to them being potentially sued.
Ah, right. I see. Never mind, then. I've lost interest in the conversation. Good day.
Why do I have to be the spokesperson for this? There are plenty of people more eloquent than I, and more informed who can explain this to you. Don't need to be so high and mighty just because I have opinions.

H3H3, Totalbiscuit, and Jim Sterling are 3 recommendations for more info, as they all have videos explaining this stuff.
BeerTent said:
Saelune said:
[...]

BeerTent said:
Saelune said:
BeerTent said:
Saelune said:
Why yes, I will blame Valve...for doing the right thing...eventually...mostly to save their own asses...but hey, the outcome is still positive.
[...]

Even for a company as large as, say, Microsoft, or Apple... Even if they owned Steam... I still think that this would have still happened. Realistically, it's a pretty damn tall order to root something out like this as it's starting up.
Personally I think Valve just doesn't care and lets people do what they want, which is why so many Steam groups are well, messed up. I don't think they don't know, I think Valve has just devolved into a money grubbing whore with no spine until it actually gets to them being potentially sued.

They are small because they choose to be. They are not lacking the money to expand.
Okay, there is one thing I want to nit-pick, and I might be digressing a little bit here, but, it needs to be said.

Valve is a business. A business is in it to make money. You ensure the green revenue number is a bigger number than the red expenditures number. You do this by doing everything in your power to make the money flowing in, and everything in your power to not spend things. To say that Valve... devolved is like saying that they didn't start as a business. They didn't start as a studio. That Half-Life was just free before they just decided one day that, "We have no love anymore. Funnel us money." They're a business, they started as a business, and the objective of every single business is to make money. You calling them money-grubbers is no different than the kids in high-school saying like, Linkin Park was cool before they totally sold out.

Onto the important part. Now, we both, know, that there's some strangely janky shit in the steam Community. KKK playing NBA to some odd Russian group revolving around what appears to be S&M. And they like Hotline Miami. But if we look at the main list for Steam Community groups, we get a page of 50 groups, and there's just under 3 million pages. Now, a lot of these groups are game groups, and it's on the developer to moderate those, but Valve, in the end, has, or is supposed to, have authority over these groups. It's Steam. Let's see how many groups that is that they have to moderate.

(The amount of pages.) x (Results per page.) = (Highball result.)
2,923,950 x 50 = 146,197,500
That's a hundred and forty six Million user-groups that a small team has to moderate.

I can't even imagine moderating the 500 at the end of that. I've worked and moderated sites about the half the size of The Escapist. Game servers, what-have you...

And this is user groups alone. How many fucking Greenlight submissions get tossed in per day? How many before a company decided to have automation take over because the workload is too much, and we need to limit ourselves to spot-checks? New game releases from unknown publishers even? Remember, the initial goal of Greenlight was to let the community decide. If the community wants a game where you take a shit on people from a balcony... Who knows? Balcony Shitter 2k16 could be the next Warframe.

I understand where your coming from, and it's not unreasonable to want quality control in an industry where Aliens: Colonial Marines is a passable product. Where customers are paying to be Beta Testers for Early Access games. But we also need to understand that Steam has grown to be this monolith, this super-massive beast of millions of people on at all times. It's just not possible to moderate every little bit at all times. And the ugly side of things is that when you do spot-checks... Well... You'll catch some, but miss a lot. As of 2013, Valve was only 330 employees large. That's not nearly enough, even if every single one was dedicated to the task.
Just because you're a business, doesn't mean you have to be terrible. The goal of making money doesn't excuse morally unjust methods. Letting children gamble, or even adults without regulations to prevent fraud, aren't excusable because of capitalistic greed. CD Project seems to be doing a good job of making money and not abusing customers with GoG.
 

BeerTent

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Saelune said:
BeerTent said:
Just because you're a business, doesn't mean you have to be terrible. The goal of making money doesn't excuse morally unjust methods. Letting children gamble, or even adults without regulations to prevent fraud, aren't excusable because of capitalistic greed. CD Project seems to be doing a good job of making money and not abusing customers with GoG.
Well, keep in mind. CD Projekt Red is a studio. They don't have the publishing power and responsibility that Valve and steam has. They have a partnership with GoG. They don't have a product that has grown so massive as to be THE #1 Software distribution service for Games.

Again, I get where your coming from, but to say that, "It should never have been possible for this to slip through the cracks." or even to assume that, would be insane. Again, it's just not possible to moderate every single facet of who and what uses Steam with 100% accuracy. I feel like I'm parroting at this point.
 

Saelune

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BeerTent said:
Saelune said:
BeerTent said:
Just because you're a business, doesn't mean you have to be terrible. The goal of making money doesn't excuse morally unjust methods. Letting children gamble, or even adults without regulations to prevent fraud, aren't excusable because of capitalistic greed. CD Project seems to be doing a good job of making money and not abusing customers with GoG.
Well, keep in mind. CD Projekt Red is a studio. They don't have the publishing power and responsibility that Valve and steam has. They have a partnership with GoG. They don't have a product that has grown so massive as to be THE #1 Software distribution service for Games.

Again, I get where your coming from, but to say that, "It should never have been possible for this to slip through the cracks." or even to assume that, would be insane. Again, it's just not possible to moderate every single facet of who and what uses Steam with 100% accuracy. I feel like I'm parroting at this point.
No, CD Projekt owns and runs GoG.

Maybe if it wasn't a Valve game, their newest one, and a big one, I could agree, but it was a Valve game, and their newest one, and a big one. It was home turf. They should atleast know their home turf. Plus the prevalence of keys and chest drops and the marketpalce's role in all this, to me, supports the idea that Valve is a money monster, not just a business trying to earn a profit. Its one thing in a free game like TF2 or Dota 2, but CS:GO is a full priced game.
 

RedRockRun

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This makes me happy, though I lament the fact that it took community investigation and whistle blowing to push Valve into action.
 

BeerTent

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Saelune said:
BeerTent said:
Saelune said:
BeerTent said:
[...]
Well, keep in mind. CD Projekt Red is a studio. They don't have the publishing power and responsibility that Valve and steam has. They have a partnership with GoG. They don't have a product that has grown so massive as to be THE #1 Software distribution service for Games.

Again, I get where your coming from, but to say that, "It should never have been possible for this to slip through the cracks." or even to assume that, would be insane. Again, it's just not possible to moderate every single facet of who and what uses Steam with 100% accuracy. I feel like I'm parroting at this point.
No, CD Projekt owns and runs GoG.

Maybe if it wasn't a Valve game, their newest one, and a big one, I could agree, but it was a Valve game, and their newest one, and a big one. It was home turf. They should atleast know their home turf. Plus the prevalence of keys and chest drops and the marketpalce's role in all this, to me, supports the idea that Valve is a money monster, not just a business trying to earn a profit. Its one thing in a free game like TF2 or Dota 2, but CS:GO is a full priced game.
I stand corrected.

If the problem is with the micro-transactions, and not with impossible moderation standards, then wouldn't it be fair to say that there's a possibility of bias?

You bring up the point of Free paid content. I'll admit to buying Warframe's Platinum, Robocraft's Premium currency, and E-passes/Crystal in Spiral Knights.

I'll take a second to lump in that TF2's lock-boxes and CS:GO's capsules are really the same thing. But again, this is difficult to compare. I paid for TF2, and all it got me in the end was a doofy fuckin' hat. Furthermore, TF2's boxes produce more depth of choice to the player, whereas CSGO's stickers and skins do not. I feel it would make more sense to state that TF2's paid content, along with GTAO's paid content is a larger problem than that of CSGO's or Overwatch's crates. The latter of which I just don't even bother opening when I level anymore.

Again, it's not a practice I agree with, but on those sides of things, I don't make the decisions. The general collective of customers do. And as long as people continue to buy, which they will and there's nothing either of us can do about it, then the developers and publishers will continue to test the waters until they get bit. And it's not up to me, or you to bite either. EA is sure as hell not feeling the sting from my boycott. I will only pay for the content I deem is worth it, which means no to drills for PayDay 2, no GTA shark cards, no Overwatch loot boxes, and sure as fuck no more Valve game Content.

This is made even worse, now that people have put us, the Videogame Consumer in an even more interesting situation. We have stated in the past that we are NOT okay with something in this industry, and then weeks before launch day, we line up for Evolve Preorders. We have a boycott group all playing the game we're supposedly boycotting. We have proven that we have literally no backbone.

This is the state of the industry now. Should we do something about it...? Yes! Are we going to? Fuck no! That would be work! Let's just sit here and type about how wrong it is and feel good about ourselves while we shut off the analytical part of our brains when we see buzzwords.

I've gone a smidgeon off topic. Thank you for making me look up that dealeo with CD Projekt. I honestly had no idea they ran GoG.
 

Saelune

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BeerTent said:
Saelune said:
BeerTent said:
Saelune said:
BeerTent said:
[...]
Well, keep in mind. CD Projekt Red is a studio. They don't have the publishing power and responsibility that Valve and steam has. They have a partnership with GoG. They don't have a product that has grown so massive as to be THE #1 Software distribution service for Games.

Again, I get where your coming from, but to say that, "It should never have been possible for this to slip through the cracks." or even to assume that, would be insane. Again, it's just not possible to moderate every single facet of who and what uses Steam with 100% accuracy. I feel like I'm parroting at this point.
No, CD Projekt owns and runs GoG.

Maybe if it wasn't a Valve game, their newest one, and a big one, I could agree, but it was a Valve game, and their newest one, and a big one. It was home turf. They should atleast know their home turf. Plus the prevalence of keys and chest drops and the marketpalce's role in all this, to me, supports the idea that Valve is a money monster, not just a business trying to earn a profit. Its one thing in a free game like TF2 or Dota 2, but CS:GO is a full priced game.
I stand corrected.

If the problem is with the micro-transactions, and not with impossible moderation standards, then wouldn't it be fair to say that there's a possibility of bias?

You bring up the point of Free paid content. I'll admit to buying Warframe's Platinum, Robocraft's Premium currency, and E-passes/Crystal in Spiral Knights.

I'll take a second to lump in that TF2's lock-boxes and CS:GO's capsules are really the same thing. But again, this is difficult to compare. I paid for TF2, and all it got me in the end was a doofy fuckin' hat. Furthermore, TF2's boxes produce more depth of choice to the player, whereas CSGO's stickers and skins do not. I feel it would make more sense to state that TF2's paid content, along with GTAO's paid content is a larger problem than that of CSGO's or Overwatch's crates. The latter of which I just don't even bother opening when I level anymore.

Again, it's not a practice I agree with, but on those sides of things, I don't make the decisions. The general collective of customers do. And as long as people continue to buy, which they will and there's nothing either of us can do about it, then the developers and publishers will continue to test the waters until they get bit. And it's not up to me, or you to bite either. EA is sure as hell not feeling the sting from my boycott. I will only pay for the content I deem is worth it, which means no to drills for PayDay 2, no GTA shark cards, no Overwatch loot boxes, and sure as fuck no more Valve game Content.

This is made even worse, now that people have put us, the Videogame Consumer in an even more interesting situation. We have stated in the past that we are NOT okay with something in this industry, and then weeks before launch day, we line up for Evolve Preorders. We have a boycott group all playing the game we're supposedly boycotting. We have proven that we have literally no backbone.

This is the state of the industry now. Should we do something about it...? Yes! Are we going to? Fuck no! That would be work! Let's just sit here and type about how wrong it is and feel good about ourselves while we shut off the analytical part of our brains when we see buzzwords.

I've gone a smidgeon off topic. Thank you for making me look up that dealeo with CD Projekt. I honestly had no idea they ran GoG.
I got a whole lot of Valve crates that sit unopened cause well, I hate microtransactions, so it seems we definatly agree there.

CD Projekt doesn't seem to push their name and GoG together like Valve does with Steam. I am fairly new to the GoG > Steam group though, and if not for Steam holding my PC gaming collection hostage, Id probably just use GoG. I mostly just want GoG's competition to motivate Valve to do a better job. I don't want to hate them, but apparently it takes a potential lawsuit to get them going. I suppose I should insert a joke about suing them to make HL3.

As for Valve, CS:GO, and gambling, while Id definatly prefer to not have it at all, if it must happen, it needs to be regulated. Children shouldn't be able to partake, and people like those who are the center of this whole thing, ProSyndicate, and TmarTn, who basically tried to scam people. They own a popular CG:GO betting site, yet on their popular youtube channels, acted like they just happened upon it. That's like if the guys running the casino pretended to be high rollers to attract people when they just had the games rigged.

This isn't just Valve allowing gambling, which I think is what most people defending them think it is. I'm going to add a link to my original post to H3H3's video on the subject, since I think its important to watch, as it goes into detail about all this.
 

Vigormortis

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Saelune said:
Why do I have to be the spokesperson for this? There are plenty of people more eloquent than I, and more informed who can explain this to you. Don't need to be so high and mighty just because I have opinions.

H3H3, Totalbiscuit, and Jim Sterling are 3 recommendations for more info, as they all have videos explaining this stuff.
When did I ask you to be a spokesperson for anything? I asked why you feel Valve must have known about the seedy, shady underbelly of some of the Steam item gambling sites well before anyone else, even though there's no meaningful evidence indicating they had. I asked why you felt that way. If you can't answer a simple question like that without resorting to saying, "Well, just look up some random video from some random jerko on Youtube", then why should I take you at your word? Why do you even hold so firmly to your claim? It's baffling, Saelune. It's why I asked for evidence that wasn't pure, unsupported speculation.[footnote]See: my previous EA / Origin example.[/footnote] I'm not looking for you to explain the entirety of the situation (something I'm already up-to-date on, by the way). I'm asking you why you believe what you're saying. That's all.

If this is how this conversation is genuinely going to go, with you essentially avoiding my questions, then I really am done. I hope it's not, but if it is, then...again...good day.
 

Saelune

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Vigormortis said:
Saelune said:
Why do I have to be the spokesperson for this? There are plenty of people more eloquent than I, and more informed who can explain this to you. Don't need to be so high and mighty just because I have opinions.

H3H3, Totalbiscuit, and Jim Sterling are 3 recommendations for more info, as they all have videos explaining this stuff.
When did I ask you to be a spokesperson for anything? I asked why you feel Valve must have known about the seedy, shady underbelly of some of the Steam item gambling sites well before anyone else, even though there's no meaningful evidence indicating they had. I asked why you felt that way. If you can't answer a simple question like that without resorting to saying, "Well, just look up some random video from some random jerko on Youtube", then why should I take you at your word? Why do you even hold so firmly to your claim? It's baffling, Saelune. It's why I asked for evidence that wasn't pure, unsupported speculation.[footnote]See: my previous EA / Origin example.[/footnote] I'm not looking for you to explain the entirety of the situation (something I'm already up-to-date on, by the way). I'm asking you why you believe what you're saying. That's all.

If this is how this conversation is genuinely going to go, with you essentially avoiding my questions, then I really am done. I hope it's not, but if it is, then...again...good day.
You did not like my answer, so I directed you to some videos that might give you an answer you can better swallow, since you first seem to criticize me for having an opinion about it, and now apparently want it again. But unlike you, I don't like to just write people off, so I will try again to better answer you.

Companies should be responsible for their products. It would be one thing if it was most games, cause Steam is big, and it is not completely up to Valve to deal with every game's issues. But this was as I said to the other person, the newest game made by Valve, and a big one at that.

As for why I feel as I do, well, Valve has shown a massive decline in being a commendable company. They neglect their consumers, and do a piss poor job of running Steam and Valve itself. As such, I am not surprised they took so long to do anything, and even if they did not know, it still paints a bad picture of their lack of attention to their own products.

If they knew what was happening and allowed it, that is shady. If they did not know, its because they are irresponsible, which again is a bad thing.
 

Vigormortis

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Saelune said:
You did not like my answer,
What answer? You made a claim about Valve, I asked you why you thought that was true, you avoided the question by saying, "Just watch some Youtube videos about it."

so I directed you to some videos
No you didn't. You mentioned some Youtubers. You never provided, nor even specified, any particular videos.

that might give you an answer you can better swallow,
How dismissive of you. Classy.

since you first seem to criticize me for having an opinion about it,
I didn't criticize you for having an opinion. I asked you to clarify that opinion and provide me with evidence that supported the basis of that opinion. You have done neither.

and now apparently want it again.
No. I want clarity on why you believe what you're claiming is true. I'm not interested in hearing what you believe, again and again. I only wanted to know why you believe it and what proof you have that it's true.

But unlike you, I don't like to just write people off,
Wow. That was certainly uncalled for. What's with the insults?

And since when is asking someone to provide proof of a claim 'writing them off'?

so I will try again to better answer you.
Or answer for the first time, technically. But sure. Go for it.

Companies should be responsible for their products.
Agreed, within reason.

It would be one thing if it was most games, cause Steam is big, and it is not completely up to Valve to deal with every game's issues. But this was as I said to the other person, the newest game made by Valve, and a big one at that.
Dota 2 is their latest game (if we discount The Lab).

As for why I feel as I do, well, Valve has shown a massive decline in being a commendable company.
How so? Care to elaborate?

They neglect their consumers,
How so? Care to elaborate?

and do a piss poor job of running Steam and Valve itself.
How so? Care to clarify?

As such, I am not surprised they took so long to do anything,
Took too long to respond to a situation they had no way of knowing was in play until evidence presented itself?

Oh yes. How dare they not preemptively respond to a situation they were unaware of being present or even possible. The bastards.

and even if they did not know,
They probably didn't.

it still paints a bad picture of their lack of attention to their own products.
It paints a bad picture of them for not knowing about something they couldn't have known about?

That paints a bad picture of us all, does it not?

If they knew what was happening and allowed it, that is shady. If they did not know, its because they are irresponsible, which again is a bad thing.
Again: If they couldn't have known, why is it their fault for not responding until evidence came to light?

Should I personally hold you responsible if someone comes along, breaks into your car, and steals it? Is it your fault for not expecting that person to come along at that moment to steal your vehicle? Or, more to the point, should I blame you if, despite your best efforts, someone figured out a way to steal your bandwidth through your wifi network? Is it your fault for not knowing that specific person would figure out how to circumvent your security?

I've said it before and I'll say it again: There are plenty of things to criticize Valve over. Missteps and mistakes. But this? This thing you're doing here? It's absurd.

Oh, and I'm still waiting for an answer as to why you think your claims are true. Evidence would be a nice start.
 

Saelune

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Vigormortis said:
Saelune said:
You did not like my answer,
What answer? You made a claim about Valve, I asked you why you thought that was true, you avoided the question by saying, "Just watch some Youtube videos about it."

so I directed you to some videos
No you didn't. You mentioned some Youtubers. You never provided, nor even specified, any particular videos.

that might give you an answer you can better swallow,
How dismissive of you. Classy.

since you first seem to criticize me for having an opinion about it,
I didn't criticize you for having an opinion. I asked you to clarify that opinion and provide me with evidence that supported the basis of that opinion. You have done neither.

and now apparently want it again.
No. I want clarity on why you believe what you're claiming is true. I'm not interested in hearing what you believe, again and again. I only wanted to know why you believe it and what proof you have that it's true.

But unlike you, I don't like to just write people off,
Wow. That was certainly uncalled for. What's with the insults?

And since when is asking someone to provide proof of a claim 'writing them off'?

so I will try again to better answer you.
Or answer for the first time, technically. But sure. Go for it.

Companies should be responsible for their products.
Agreed, within reason.

It would be one thing if it was most games, cause Steam is big, and it is not completely up to Valve to deal with every game's issues. But this was as I said to the other person, the newest game made by Valve, and a big one at that.
Dota 2 is their latest game (if we discount The Lab).

As for why I feel as I do, well, Valve has shown a massive decline in being a commendable company.
How so? Care to elaborate?

They neglect their consumers,
How so? Care to elaborate?

and do a piss poor job of running Steam and Valve itself.
How so? Care to clarify?

As such, I am not surprised they took so long to do anything,
Took too long to respond to a situation they had no way of knowing was in play until evidence presented itself?

Oh yes. How dare they not preemptively respond to a situation they were unaware of being present or even possible. The bastards.

and even if they did not know,
They probably didn't.

it still paints a bad picture of their lack of attention to their own products.
It paints a bad picture of them for not knowing about something they couldn't have known about?

That paints a bad picture of us all, does it not?

If they knew what was happening and allowed it, that is shady. If they did not know, its because they are irresponsible, which again is a bad thing.
Again: If they couldn't have known, why is it their fault for not responding until evidence came to light?

Should I personally hold you responsible if someone comes along, breaks into your car, and steals it? Is it your fault for not expecting that person to come along at that moment to steal your vehicle? Or, more to the point, should I blame you if, despite your best efforts, someone figured out a way to steal your bandwidth through your wifi network? Is it your fault for not knowing that specific person would figure out how to circumvent your security?

I've said it before and I'll say it again: There are plenty of things to criticize Valve over. Missteps and mistakes. But this? This thing you're doing here? It's absurd.

Oh, and I'm still waiting for an answer as to why you think your claims are true. Evidence would be a nice start.
Most of this stuff I might as well copy/paste my last post. Id directly link you to videos, but you don't seem to want to watch them anyways. Here are the video links anyways, to cover my bases.
H3H3: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_8fU2QG-lV0
Totalbiscuit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8z_VY8KZpMU
Jim Sterling: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ng_SbSdUkc8

As for dismissiveness, you ended your last few posts literally with "good day" because you seem to know everything already. Not exactly good form. You can dislike me, my opinions, or even arguing with me, but you don't have to be an ass.

Dota 2 is infact their latest game. I could have swore Dota 2 was older than CS:GO though. Guess I was wrong on that part atleast.

As for Valve doing a bad job. Well, on the game developer side, they well...don't seem to do that anymore. Hell, I thought CS:GO was a much more recent game, perhaps 2014 maybe, but nope, 2012, so the fact Dota 2 is their most recent game at 2013, with no clear signs of making anything else that considering them a game developer seems hard to do. Ofcourse they could be hard at work at something, but they are being way to secretive about it if they are.

I will give them the hardware side of things though, but its early still and we will see.

As for Steam, there is a SEVERE lack of quality control. So much shovelware garbage on Steam, and shitty publishers who literally just publish garbage game after garbage game run free. I would hope they would have more dignity and pride in Steam to not let just anyone poop in their yard.

And there is a difference between someone stealing your car, and someone running a gambling racket in your basement. If people were doing that in my basement, Id have to be pretty dense not to know it. That is certainly a more equivalent metaphor.

As for proof, I use Steam. I know that likely wont satisfy you, and you'd prefer I link some news reports or something, but I say this as someone who uses Steam, who sees the ways it lacks and the garbage that drowns the store page all too often. And as someone who uses GoG who sees what quality control is.

EDIT: http://store.steampowered.com/app/495300/ Even as someone who has a very negative opinion on him, I really don't need this on something like Steam. I didn't even look for this, but it was there on my store page. Steam shouldn't become a cesspit like those free internet game sites.
 

Vigormortis

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Saelune said:
Most of this stuff I might as well copy/paste my last post.
I wanted to know why, not what.

Id directly link you to videos, but you don't seem to want to watch them anyways.
You can't say I don't seem to want to watch something you never actually linked to me. I actually asked you to show me something. What point would there be in asking if I planned to not watch?

Here are the video links anyways, to cover my bases.
Good. Let's watch the videos....

Was this one supposed to support the claim that Valve is at fault? It doesn't seem to. He spends the majority of his video condemning the players who ran the gambling sites, not Valve. He offers no evidence that Valve had any way to know those players owned those sites. So his criticism and indictment of the players is valid, but he offers no meaningful criticism of Valve.

This video doesn't provide the evidence I was looking for. Maybe one of the other ones will?

Totalbiscuit
This one doesn't either. He spends the entire video ranting and damning the site owners who scammed people. He doesn't even really mention Valve.

Maybe Sterling will provide the evidence?

Jim Sterling: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ng_SbSdUkc8
Hmm, well, he offhandedly mentions that the whole thing further 'taints' Steam's image, but he doesn't really explain why. He doesn't explain how Valve is at fault for the actions of the site owners (whom, by the way, were being dealt with when it was discovered they were breaking the Steam terms of use). In fact, his only real complaint is on the nature of microtransactions themselves, not Valve's supposed 'involvement' with the gambling sites.

So, I'm still not seeing how Valve was either aware of the shady dealings and let them run free until they were caught, or that they were 'incompetent' for not knowing something no one else knew at the time. (this is a false dichotomy, by the way)

As for dismissiveness, you ended your last few posts literally with "good day" because you seem to know everything already.
No, I ended that post with "good day" because you refused, repeatedly, to answer my questions and instead decided to be dismissive and accuse me of things I never thought or said. The preemptive 'good day' was an indication that, if that was to be the direction the conversation was to go in, I was no longer interested in continuing.

Dismissive? No. Frustrated? Yes.

Not exactly good form.
Neither is insulting someone while dodging their questions.

You can dislike me, my opinions, or even arguing with me, but you don't have to be an ass.
You might want to change your wordage here. This sort of thing is likely to net you mod wrath.

I don't dislike you. I barely know you. Can't really dislike someone I barely know. And I don't 'dislike' your opinions. I'm not even saying you can't hold your opinions. This entire time I've only been asking you to provide evidence for the claim that Valve is at fault for the whole fiasco.

Dota 2 is infact their latest game. I could have swore Dota 2 was older than CS:GO though. Guess I was wrong on that part atleast.
No biggie. Easy mistake to make, since the two came out within close proximity to each other. I've made much bigger gaffes.

As for Valve doing a bad job. Well, on the game developer side, they well...don't seem to do that anymore.
True. Well, except for their release of The Lab just a few months ago, and the constant content updates to Dota 2, CS:GO, TF2. Not to mention their extensive work in the VR space and the updating and expansion of Steam, its infrastructure, and its feature sets.

But sure. The entirety of Valve's workforce just sits around all day coding nothing. We'll go with that.

Hell, I thought CS:GO was a much more recent game, perhaps 2014 maybe, but nope, 2012, so the fact Dota 2 is their most recent game at 2013, with no clear signs of making anything else that considering them a game developer seems hard to do.
Would you consider id a game developer? Would you consider Bioware a game developer? Did you know they go years and years in between game releases? Does that mean they aren't game developers either?

I have never understood the notion that just because Valve isn't churning out Half-Life games every fucking year that they are "no longer a developer".

The only game Re-Logic has ever produced is Terraria. Are they no longer a developer either?

Ofcourse they could be hard at work at something,
They are. And I don't say that as an assumption. Alan Yates, during a Q&A session on Reddit, recently revealed that close to a third of the company is currently hard at work on VR projects, with at least a quarter working on Dota 2, CS:GO, and TF2. This leaves the rest working on some undisclosed project(s). Or nothing at all. Who knows?

but they are being way to secretive about it if they are.
Not entirely. See above. But still, secrecy is what Valve does with their projects. After what happened with Half-Life and Half-Life 2 I can hardly blame them.

I will give them the hardware side of things though, but its early still and we will see.
Agreed, in that it is still early. My hope is that the momentum VR is gaining (and it is gaining momentum) continues over the next year or so. This will help bring down the cost of entry for VR, allowing a much larger audience to participate. So far AMD and nVidia are helping things along, as are other devs like DICE, Epic, id, etc. But the biggest hurdle left is gaining a large enough market presence.

Like you say. Time will tell.

As for Steam, there is a SEVERE lack of quality control. So much shovelware garbage on Steam, and shitty publishers who literally just publish garbage game after garbage game run free. I would hope they would have more dignity and pride in Steam to not let just anyone poop in their yard.
I keep hearing about this supposed deluge of garbage hitting Steam, but whenever I peruse the Store, I actually have to go looking for this 'abundance of shovelware'. Most of the time, I have to resort to going onto Greenlight to find it.

I mean, I literally just popped over to my Storefront in the Steam client. I saw...maybe one game that I might consider "shovelware", but that has more to do with it being the sort of game I have no interest in, rather than it actually be fraudulent trash.

Are there shit games on Steam? Sure, absolutely. Are there games with questionable circumstances, developers, and publishers? Sadly, yes. There are. And they need to be dealt with. But just because you or I may not like a particular game does NOT mean others won't either. I would consider the FNaF games to be shovelware, but they are immensely popular.

Even so, what does this have to do with the gambling thing?

And there is a difference between someone stealing your car, and someone running a gambling racket in your basement. If people were doing that in my basement, Id have to be pretty dense not to know it. That is certainly a more equivalent metaphor.
A better example would be someone stealing your wifi to run their own pirating server. Your only clue, which you may not even notice, would be that your bandwidth was slower than normal. Would you still be at fault for that, even if you took every precaution you could to secure your network?

As for proof, I use Steam. I know that likely wont satisfy you, and you'd prefer I link some news reports or something, but I say this as someone who uses Steam, who sees the ways it lacks and the garbage that drowns the store page all too often. And as someone who uses GoG who sees what quality control is.
I could bring up the "just because you don't like a game..." argument again, but I'm still wondering what this point has to do with the gambling fiasco. They aren't even tangentially linked, so I'm curious why you've brought it up.

EDIT: http://store.steampowered.com/app/495300/ Even as someone who has a very negative opinion on him, I really don't need this on something like Steam. I didn't even look for this, but it was there on my store page. Steam shouldn't become a cesspit like those free internet game sites.
And how long was it on your front page? Did it displace the majority of titles also listed on the Storefront? How many people have even purchased the game? How many are even playing it? Is it even popular? What impact has it had on the Steam Store overall?

As you can see by the Store page, it has 'mixed' reviews. This indicates that some people like it and others don't. You're clearly in the latter, as I would be, but who are we to decide that no one else should have access to the game? Who are we to decide what people should and shouldn't enjoy?

A game you're not interested in showed up on your Store page. It was probably there for a day, if that long. I'm sorry for your plight. I too know how it feels to be shown products I have no interest in buying. Do you have any idea how much I hate that Amazon.com displays things I don't want to buy? What an absolute failure of an online retailer. How dare they not filter out all of the products I'm not interested in?

You'll have to pardon the sarcasm but the whole thing just screams of double standards. And I'm not accusing you, specifically, but rather the mentality. That Steam/Valve is somehow egregiously broken and lacks any standard of quality, even though we fail to criticize nearly every other major retailer, online or off, for the same 'problem'. I don't hear people calling out Netflix for having bad movies along side the good ones.

But that's a topic for a different thread. This one is on the gambling, and on that I understand your stance, but I still don't see evidence to support the claim that Valve is at fault, specifically.

As much as I dislike the phrase, we'll just have to 'agree to disagree'.

With that settled, I offer cookies as a peace offering.


Let's be friends? I don't like to fight. I'm a lover, not a fighter.

I'll even throw in a glass of chocolate milk. How 'bout it?