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Valve Appealing $3 Million Fine

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Valve, the PC gaming behemoth that operates Steam, has filed another motion to appeal a $3 million fine they are being faced with. The Australian regulator made a decision to fine the company over claims that it deceived or misled gamers in matters related to Steam’s refund policy.

The case has been on-going since 2014 and Valve has since attempted to appeal the penalty, an appeal that was dismissed in 2016. Valve has now filed another appeal against the claims and the penalty.

Jonny Roses of IGEA (Interactive Games and Entertainment Association) explains, Valve applied for a “special leave” to the High Court for its Federal Court appeal regarding the decision. The decision and the $3 million penalty are currently still holding, pending the decision of the appeal process.

Valve are appealing on the grounds that it has never itself traded in Australia so are not violating anything in Australian consumer law. Valve are arguing that they provide online access to video games through a client, which they feel does not fall into the definition of “goods” as Australian Consumer Law defines it. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission did not agree however and declared that Valve did indeed carry out trading in Australia and due to this, are bound by Australian Consumer Law.

ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said:

“This case sets an important precedent that overseas-based companies that sell to Australians must abide by our law, all goods come with automatic consumer guarantees that they are of acceptable quality and fit for the purpose for which they were sold, even if the business is based overseas,”

How do you feel about the fine? Do you feel that Valve is classed as trading in the countries that Steam is available? What are your thoughts on their refund policies? Let us know in the comments section below or drop us a Tweet!

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I'm a retro game collector with a love of all things geeky. My major passion is gaming which I have been doing for a long time and I can't wait to see what the future of gaming holds!

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