Valve appeals to EU sanctions for geo-blocking

Discussion in 'Frontpage news' started by Hilbert Hagedoorn, Aug 30, 2019.

  1. Kaarme

    Kaarme Ancient Guru

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    I don't think geo-blocking of games works like that? If you are in a certain country within a certain geo-blocking zone, you pay one price. It doesn't matter where you came from. Like someone already said, it might cause problems for their game library if they moved from one geo-block zone into another. Who knows how smartly the clients are programmed. You are for some reason trying to force this into an example of discrimination inside a single country. Prices of the same goods differ from country to country in any case. I don't feel super discriminated because bananas cost over here probably 10 times more than in some South American country. Typically if games are cheaper in some country, you'd expect pretty much all everyday items/services are as well, at least things that are everyday stuff in that particular country and aren't considered luxury or perhaps requiring too much high tech infrastructure (if it's a developing country).

    I live in one of the most expensive countries in the world. I'm well past the point of imagining I could find a single item/service in existence that would be cheaper here than in most of the world. I guess that has shaped my mentality?

    The USA is a huge game market. Clearly not the whole middle class is as troubled as your Californian example suggests. Anyway, the distributors would undoubtedly look at every country separately and individually to decide whether they need to adjust the prices there. They are supposed to be professionals at selling games. You'd think they would know what they are doing, more or less.
     
  2. Fox2232

    Fox2232 Ancient Guru

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    It is digitally distributed content that does not include additional geo-shipping fees. Your imported bananas do.
    No, it is not discrimination inside a single country, it is a global problem. As for your example of being from top richest countries. What if that game US pays $60 costed $120 in yours. Low income family in your country would still have to pay $120 while higher income family in developing country would get same thing for $40.

    If you have not understood my quote about Murderer/Conqueror/God. Then Valve's exploitation which has global reach is at level of God. And their double standards are exactly cause for existence of shops like g2play. And therefore cause to people buying game-keys for other regions.
     
  3. TieSKey

    TieSKey Member Guru

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    There's no "average" person that has the same income as in first world countries. People with your average level of income are considered "rich" here and are less than 15% of the population....

    I agree a per-family/personal income price would be awesome but that's still to happen (if is happens at all). In the mean time regional prices do help to 80% of the population of these countries, a lot. Regional prices are not broken, they are just nor perfect.

    Btw, where were the courts when a company I did work for (Accenture, Oracle) paid me 10% of what someone in the US gets for doing the exact same work, with exactly the same education level and having to use a foreign language???
     
  4. Fox2232

    Fox2232 Ancient Guru

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    I like to change things a bit with each post because changing them increases chance that message in different form gets through.

    So, imagine 2 countries. Country A pays $60 for game. Country B pays $40 for game.
    Do you think it is good idea to ask those prices to someone from country A who has lower income than someone from country B?
    Because it means that for example person from A with income of $400 a month is asked to pay $60 while person from B with income of $401 is asked to pay $40.
    (If you took real income overlap and real asking price difference. There would be millions of discriminated people who have fraction of median income from this overlap. And are asked to pay twice as much.)

    Google's Discrimination: The unjust or prejudicial treatment of different categories of people, especially on the grounds of race, age, or sex.
     

  5. Fierce Guppy

    Fierce Guppy Active Member

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    Hypothetically, should Valve ignore the European Commissariat, what could the latter do? How would it impose a fine?
     
  6. TieSKey

    TieSKey Member Guru

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    Hey, I agree to what u say and hope the human species starts being less greedy and more equal, but that being said, it doesn't make "no regional prices" better than current "regional prices".

    Asking 60 to both the 400 and 401 monthly income individuals isn't fairer. Let me put it in a more extreme way to make my point: "killing" 2 people isn't fairer than just killing one, both are unfair but one is still worse than the other.
     
  7. babylon52281

    babylon52281 Master Guru

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    LOL at the first world problems some people have. Understandably since this site and most of the forumers are from Western Hemisphere.

    Allow me to give my take from a regular joe in a 3rd world shithole.

    As one above have pointed out, the "average person" income in my region (minus 1-2 countries) would be considered under your countries poverty level. Yeah, we're that bad here. Our income wouldn't survive you folks cost of living, so life goes on here.

    Don't expect us to pay $60 for a game, heck even $40 is too pricey on our level therefore piracy is still rampant here for those just looking to play the single player campaign in games. We have SC2, CS, DOTA and other MOBAs for anything else. So I am all for regional geo-blocking because it would have made games virtually unaffordable to us if we had to pay your prices. FYI I do buy games legally whenever I can mostly those in bargain.

    Take it this way; if the publishers & resellers decided that in Region A about 80% could afford to pay X prices, then it should be fixed at X prices and if in Region B about 80% could afford to pay Y prices then they should be paying Y prices. Those in Region B shouldn't be envious or dissatisfied they are paying more than gamers in Region A, because A level of income and affordability is lower than Region B.

    Those in Region B should have more sense than going around with "You folks in A should be paying my prices because its unfair to me" attitude. If you're talking about the unequal prices for countries within your Region B, then you have your point.

    Don't get me wrong, I'm all about equality and there's plenty inequality I see here. I wished in my shithole us average joes could earn your level of income and living standards. But to deprive us for want of affordable games (still not cheap but many of us try), that is just discrimination and as said a first world people perceived problem. Rampant piracy here is the more important issue in my region. Developers & resellers are making good strides with the lower prices from geo-blocking our region. Uppricing to EU levels would be counterproductive.

    I hope with this, many would understand our 3rd world predicament. Thanks & peace all.
     
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  8. Fox2232

    Fox2232 Ancient Guru

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    And average people in your country do not buy "luxury" cars either, because it is costly.
    Average person there would not buy $20 pencil. Even many artists would have hard time justifying it while still knowing that it is costly to make and is perfect for given task.
    But maker who spends $12 to make it and deliver will not sell it any cheaper.

    And that's how it should work. Can't afford $60 game, go buy yourself completely different game that costs $15. Or wait 2 years till it becomes discounted enough for you and at same time for everyone else.
    Do you have 1/4 prices for gaming HW too? I doubt it. So someone who can afford good enough gaming PC for given title should be able to afford pay the price if he wants to play the game.
    PC gaming or any other form of digital gaming is not life necessity therefore it does not have to be cheaper in poorer countries at all.
    - - - -
    As for your country and ugly description you are giving it. Our country for example has no mineral based wealth. Our only real resource are people.
    People who for generations strive to make things better even with governments that are generally corrupt for many decades.
    Nobody here has things for free. Except mandatory elementary education. I for example spent 16 years in schools. And as I started to work I continued to increase my qualification.
    I say that in total, I have 24 years when I did study if I consider 5 days a full week. That's 24800 hours. Normalized to 8 hours a day, 5 days a week, it would be 12 years of work (w/o any vacation at all) to actually have good job. And quite large portion of it while actually having 40 hours a week job.
    - - - -
    So, what is it your country is lacking? Elementary education, so people are mostly illiterate? Or is it Secondary education, so people can't find any technical job. Or are universities missing?
    Who does industry there? Who takes care of banking and medical? Where did government got education?

    Maybe you can't make it much better for yourself, but you can make it better for your children. You can start easily. Stop wasting your time on games. Don't buy them if they are financial or time burden. Focus on some achievable goals in life, because game achievements look nice, but are worth nothing.

    I for example love playing PC games. I have played them for over 30 years now. (And truth is that I am where I am because I loved computers from 1st time I used it when I was 4.) But when I have no time to play because there is something important, I do not play. I do not buy games, just because they are "cheap" either.

    You can still be homeless person in richest country on planet. Or you can be damn rich in country that's poorest.
    But product that has static cost to make and deliver should be priced about same.
     
  9. babylon52281

    babylon52281 Master Guru

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    For us here, cars are essential but luxury cars are just that: luxury. We still have affordable cars and we have many mortorbikes. Just like gaming not many would pay up for 1st day releases, like me I wait 1 year for any AAA titles or go for free to play MOBAs. Even at our lower prices, I can bet that our average gamer would still buy less titles compared to your average. Life goes on.

    I do agree in the larger picture, gaming is a non-essential and yes we do take care of the living needs first which is why we're well known for being overworked. Many of us strive and worked damn hard on our education and our jobs to get where we are, thank you very much. One of the good things we have; we can be homeless and not die due to winter cold (no winters here).

    Ironically PC hardware is value-wise more expensive here than you have in EU despite being made here. Perhaps we should demand people from Region B to pay our level of overinflated prices for PC stuff? No, I read enough to see that you folks are just as sensitive to price inflations. Should we have a holier-than-thou attitude then and say to you "pay up for your overpriced RTXs you poor plebs and stop complaining"?

    Look, the world is unfair and there's plenty of inequalities. You folks earn more and have a higher living standards but at a higher cost. Vice-versa here tho our living standards are lower. We work hard to improve that, we climbed ranks (not the gaming one), and despite it being a shithole its still our home. Do we want your level of earnings and living standards? Of course we do, we are working towards it but its not an easy thing that we could achieve in a short time span, as a society, as a country and as a region.

    So sometimes it takes a bit of humbleness and looking from the other blokes PoV to see where they're coming from and try to understand.
    I have nothing more to say. Peace out!
     
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  10. Fox2232

    Fox2232 Ancient Guru

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    Sure I wish, that your local gaming HW was not more expensive than here. (Except for import fees and VAT adjustment, that's result of nations self inflicted injury on government level.)

    All item prices should be about equal + transport/import + VAT.

    Salaries should be more equal around world too. But that is one of mechanisms, that makes poorer countries richer. If country and countries around are safe to operate in and pose no security risk, then many abroad companies decide to invest there due to lower expected cost of having employees.
    Then there come others, and as they need more people which may not be available in required numbers, they offer more money.
    And this enables people tog et more skilled. Often big corporations help with education just to have more skilled workers. (All of that and more is about influx of money from outside.)

    I am sure that you know quite many things about it. From that perspective I think that there are 2 most important things: Security projection for given country. And being nice and clean within "US Export Regulations". If any of those is no good, investment into country are high risk.
    One can say that US has damn high political power by just marking country as bad in those two categories. And they have military power high enough to be taken seriously.
    (But away from "politics".)

    I hope your country is safe since you do not call int very nicely. I used to call similarly our hometown. Because it was super boring place and any news managed to move from one end of town to another before next day's newspapers. (At times before internet.)
    We used to say: "You fart at lake, and under castle they say you did crap yourself." (two locations on opposite sides of town)
     
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  11. babylon52281

    babylon52281 Master Guru

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    Hahaha! Don't look too much into it. Even in my region, my fellow countrymen are known to be highly critical of our country.

    And thanks for your concerns. Safety.... well, that is relative. Many that I known have been a crime victim at least once in their lives, me too. But things are getting better, just not as fast as we liked (again here is our self-criticism of the country ;-) ).

    I sure hope that with less restrictions and regulations prices should go lower everywhere -even at your end- but as we all know businesses don't work that way. If they can make their customers pay more, they will certainly do that.
     
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  12. Fediuld

    Fediuld Master Guru

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    Down with Steam........ :mad:
     
  13. Aura89

    Aura89 Ancient Guru

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  14. Noisiv

    Noisiv Ancient Guru

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    This is all highly confusing.
    And the confusing part is that nearly everyone speaks about what XYZ SHOULD do or aim for, without clarifying where this SHOULD comes from.

    Like are we talking from legal, lawful, business (long,short) or ethical standpoint. It can't be that everyone think they are all the same.

    I'll tell you how I got discriminated against when I bought my 2070 super from an online shop. Not sure if it was on geographical, political, national or ethnical grounds :D

    When I received the GPU, I made a phone call asking for my game codes, and the guy tells me that their RTX promo bundle runs only for Germany, Austria and Switzerland.
    I couldn't believe what I was hearing. Like WTF I bought the game from a GERMAN SHOP! I can\t have it delivered elsewhere? Without losing codes?

    But wait, maybe I also need to have a castle in Bavaria and be a direct descendant from Kaiser Wilhelm. And how does this support guy know that I am not?
    Anyway I went to a berserk mode and made such a stinker with both good and ridiculous points as to why they should send me CODES. The guy was pretty much mute. Later that day I received an email with game codes.
    Moral: NONE. Be careful of what you assume.
     
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  15. Noisiv

    Noisiv Ancient Guru

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    Oh but I did sense the sarcasm and giggles in his tone. And you're thousands miles away, you can't do anything, and if you was here, I\d beat you because I go to the gym attitude.
    While I was contemplating on burying him
     
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  16. Fox2232

    Fox2232 Ancient Guru

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    He was regular scumbag. GPU came to are and was eligible to be bundled with codes. He would have kept them for himself or sold.
     
  17. BLEH!

    BLEH! Ancient Guru

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    Time was PC versions of games used to be reasonably priced (at least in the UK: £30 or so), compared to consoles (£45/50), but now they've been catching up and in some cases going further. It's definitely impacted how many new games I buy, especially since you can get second hand console games, but not from the likes of Steam.
     
  18. MegaFalloutFan

    MegaFalloutFan Master Guru

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    VALVE must be punished for as much money as possible, they need to feel it on their skin.
    What they doing is anti competitive, there is no laws forbidding me to order game disks from another country, [or whatever else i might want and i personally been buying across all regional amazon shops and newegg.com for the best prices, i dont care if its from France, Germany, USA or whatever, this is how open market works] their geo blocking is illegal
     
  19. fantaskarsef

    fantaskarsef Ancient Guru

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    You yourself have already stated an example of different warranties for the same product. Same product, 1 year in Asia, 2 in EU. And you expect ME to produce another example, and at the same time claim I'm talking crap?
    I have a feeling you are not aware that the company returned your money out of good will, not out of having to do it by law. Try fighting for that with a product that's not as easily replaced as a computer mouse but say, an 8K TV that costs a lot of money. Not sure they'd offer you to give you back your money that easily.
    And you're not even living inside the EU, are you? But I'm sure you are confronted with that way more than people reciding here.

    As for different warranties, things used to be different before the EU "unified" warranties. I'm sure you can remember, I guess you're old enough to have experienced that. It might be a bad choice of words, thank you on making me aware of that in calling it "crap", which shows your politeness and discussion culture of heart.

    And still, I wouldn't dare to say that there's things as a "bring in" warranty on many products since in many countries of the EU, like Austria, there's not even always a company branch, like LG. I recently bought and LG TV and had the same issue with the first one I got, and the second one. But there's no way I can get it handled by LG since they have no brasnch office in Austria. They do have one in Germany. So the "bring in" warranty, sold by some merchants, actually is a "send it to Germany" warranty rather than having a shop in the capital I could go to and have it fixed there. Which is important not by the term (I'm aware bring it in isn't meant to be literal), but it is by the meanings of what time you can expect for a product fix, since transportation to and from Germany adds at least 2 and sometimes more days to the total time of you sending a product in for repair, and it returning.

    And, what I was referring to in my post which you did not talk about but was the main point, it means that in my special case with the TV, the general right of warranty under EU law says, I can ask for a replacement in the first half year after purchase, rather than a repair. Replacements are instant, repairs are not. That's the difference between 1 year manufacturer warranty ("Hersteller-Garantie") and the general 2 year warranty under EU law.

    I hope that explains what I intended to say in my post better to your understanding, and I apologize for the wrong wording used. If you feel the need to call crap again feel free to do so, and add proof to your claims that I am wrong.
     
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