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Valve's updated Steam Subscriber Agreement bars class action lawsuits


If you're like most people, when Steam started up this morning you noticed there was an extra pop-up prompting you to click a button that says "I agree" a few times, and you did this without reading much into what you were consenting to. Turns out you don't actually "own" your left hand anymore. Oh, well.

Actually, it was an updated Steam Subscriber Agreement altering the legal options available to customers. First, Steam customers may no longer bring class action claims against the service, mirroring similar moves by large distribution and publishing companies, including Sony and Microsoft.

"We considered this change very carefully. It's clear to us that in some situations, class actions have real benefits to customers," Valve explains. "In far too many cases however, class actions don't provide any real benefit to users and instead impose unnecessary expense and delay, and are often designed to benefit the class action lawyers who craft and litigate these claims."

Individual claims will still be allowed, though Valve has now instituted a required process that channels these claims to arbitration or small claims court. Valve will reimburse the cost of arbitration under a certain amount, provided the arbitrator deems the claim isn't frivolous nor the expenses unreasonable.

Valve is also opening an office in Luxembourg "to better serve our EU customers and partners," who will sign an EU-specific SSA.

Hey, at least you still own your left hand.

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