In a huge victory for European gamers, a French court decided that Steam users will now be able to sell digital purchases.
After four years of court battles, the District Court of Paris ruled against video game publisher Valve on Sept. 17, deciding that Steam users can resell games downloaded on the platform. The case was brought by French consumer group UFC-Que Choisir, who believe consumers should have the right to resell digital purchases.
“So far, dematerialized games, that is to say without physical support (such as a CD or a cartridge), could not be resold used unlike box games,” according to a translation from the UFC-Que Choisir website. “Believing that this difference in treatment was not justified, the UFC-Que Choisir asked the judges, four years ago, to declare the clause prohibiting the resale of Steam games abusive.”
The consumer group felt that it’s justified for users to sell their used digital purchases, similar to how people can resell their used Xbox, PlayStation, or Nintendo games.
This ruling is a big win for gamers and consumers alike. The decision can set precedent among the digital gaming market that would allow gamers to resell “dematerialized” games regardless of what platform they downloaded it from.
This isn’t the only claim UFC-Que Choisir had against the video game publisher, though. The judge ruled that 14 other clauses that Valve imposed on its users were illegal. Valve gave itself the right to keep the funds of its users if they left the platform, for example.
Valve is unwilling to accept the court’s decision, however.
“We disagree with the decision of the Paris Court of First Instance and will appeal it,” Valve told Kotaku. “The decision will have no effect on Steam while the case is on appeal.”
While Valve is appealing the ruling, no notable changes will occur on its platform.