German Consumer Group Hopes To See Valve In Court This Year


Verbraucherzentrale Bundesverband e.V. doesn’t think Valve will change its ToS.

A short while back German consumer rights advocacy group Verbraucherzentrale Bundesverband e.V. (VZBV) threatened to take Valve to court over its Terms of Service. Now, after a period of silence, VZBV has popped up on the radar again, this time to make a hopeful claim that Valve will see the inside of a German court room this year. “It is not realistic that Valve will change their policy,” VZBV says, “But our chance to win the process is very good and that will be really an improvement for consumers.” Valve has yet to comment on the situation, though presumably by now Valve’s Doug Lombardi has actually seen the VZBV complaint.

The dispute is over the sale of used digital games. The Court of Justice of the European Union has ruled that such sales are legal regardless of the vendor’s EULA, a development which spurred Valve into making a change to its Terms of Service, removing any possibility of a class action suit against it in the event of a customer dispute. That ToS change got VZBV involved when Valve stated that anyone who didn’t want to sign up to the updated ToS would have their accounts deactivated, along with all games and content. From that time to this there’s been silence, but VZBV’s latest seems to indicate that silence is no longer an option for Valve.

While it’s very unlikely we’ll ever have to speculate, Mr Bridger-style, on what they have for dinner in German prisons, it will be interesting to see whether or not this dispute actually goes to court. Second hand digital sales will become a big deal in the not so distant future; cases like these will decide what that future looks like.

Source: Games On

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