A French high court this week conveyed a hit to Valve, deciding that European shoppers are lawfully allowed to resale games purchased on Steam, similarly as they’re ready to resale bundled, physical games. This provision is huge and can have serious repercussions for all digital game stores.
The court rejected Valve’s defense, which argued that Steam was a subscription service. In a statement released, Valve pledged to appeal the decision. If this is upheld, Valve will have to change its terms of service within 30 days, as the court says the rejection of the resale clause is unwritten. This means the item is illegal and therefore cannot be applied by Steam, at least in France. According to EU law, all goods, including software, can be sold without the permission of the original manufacturer or seller. The court made clear that any resale of the game must be of one copy, not of duplicates.
According to the judgment, Valve has three months to amend the Terms of Service, although this is likely to be delayed during the appeal process. Valve is involved in another similar ongoing situation with the EU