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Reason why Valve isn't that concerned about piracy...

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December 4, 2008 12:12:56 AM

http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_index.php?story=2...

Very impressive... Apparently you don't need SecuROM to make money... It shows that when you keep high quality standards it pays off in the long run, I am very happy for Valve :D  And I'm dying to see the Steam numbers if they're willing to disclose them at some point.

December 4, 2008 10:31:35 AM

I know. They must be getting some scary figures, especially with games like L4D where the whole point of it is online play hence many, many more steam purchases. I know I haven't been into a games store for a valve game in... I don't even know! Long time.
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December 4, 2008 10:31:44 AM

oh YEA!

Quote:
Furthermore, and quite notably, the published statistics do not include sales from digital distribution, which is known to be an increasingly weighty subset of Valve's overall revenue -- and, of course, it delivers higher profit margins.


so that doesn't include Steam sales, those figures are massive, but Valve releases quality games with not very many bugs, EA/Eidios i hope your listening!
December 4, 2008 5:00:16 PM

Probably have to add 30-40% on those numbers to add in Steam sales. Maybe not for the first games, but for those released in the last 4 years, definitely.

Go Valve!!!
December 4, 2008 10:16:57 PM

mi1ez said:
Just to expand, Valve think most DRM "is dumb"

http://www.custompc.co.uk/news/605286/most-drm-is-just-...

...However GTA4 will still be shipping with SecuROM7, even from Steam...


You mean most, but not including the DRM Valve uses, which is the most restrictive form of DRM out there.
December 5, 2008 1:59:23 AM

Oh god not this again... Well I don't have a problem with Steam, in fact I love Steam :)  To the point that I only buy games that are released on steam, I don't want to buy anymore retail games.
December 5, 2008 3:03:59 AM

emp said:
Oh god not this again...

WTF? Aren't you the one who took an article which didn't mention piracy or DRM one single time and created a thread about piracy and DRM based on it?

emp said:
Reason why Valve isn't that concerned about piracy...

emp said:
Apparently you don't need SecuROM to make money


Now please show me where in the article you posted there is ANY mention of SecuRom, DRM, or piracy and then you can start acting incredulous about "Oh god not this again..."


BTW, after going through the article again it looks like you just stole you're post almost verbatim from the second comment after the story.
December 5, 2008 6:52:02 AM

purplerat said:
You mean most, but not including the DRM Valve uses, which is the most restrictive form of DRM out there.

I said most...

I like the way Valve have implemented their DRM. In my mind it just works. I can go to my mate's house to show him my latest game and not lug my rig down there, just log into his steam and download it. It can be a nuisance when it decides it needs to report back and my router's down (damn d-link heap o'...) but this is my only problem. I feel i know what it's doing, and it can be fully uninstalled.
December 5, 2008 9:12:02 AM

mi1ez said:
I said most...
I can go to my mate's house to show him my latest game and not lug my rig down there, just log into his steam and download it. It can be a nuisance when it decides it needs to report back and my router's down (damn d-link heap o'...) but this is my only problem. I feel i know what it's doing, and it can be fully uninstalled.


Meh, only if it is a game with unlimited activations. More and more (non Valve) games on Steam are with an activation policy and then it will cost you an activation to do what you just described.
December 5, 2008 12:40:09 PM

mi1ez said:
I said most...

I like the way Valve have implemented their DRM. In my mind it just works. I can go to my mate's house to show him my latest game and not lug my rig down there, just log into his steam and download it. It can be a nuisance when it decides it needs to report back and my router's down (damn d-link heap o'...) but this is my only problem. I feel i know what it's doing, and it can be fully uninstalled.

The reason why I say it's the most restrictive is that Steam doesn't just sometimes "decide" to check your internet connection, it pretty much always needs to check your internet connection (yes I know there's an offline mode, but it's just not very useful unless you know before hand that your internet connection will be down). Compared to having to worry about an activation every time you install a game (ie SecuRom) having to authenticate every time you play seems much more restrictive to me. I've never had a problem having to reinstall a game or any software due to activation limits. Worse case scenario is that I have to find a work around. But when Steam says I can't play, I can't play and that's happened dozens of times to me since I started using Steam.

What makes this issue even worse on Steam than say an MMO or other online only games where you have to log in to play is that Steam's log in spans multiple games, as many as you have on your Steam account. So if Steam is down it's not just one game you can't play or even just multilayer you can't play, it's every game on Steam that you can't play.
But even when Steam is working perfectly fine this is still an issue. What I've noticed since I've grown my Steam collection is that there are times when I may want to have two different games running at once on separate PCs. Now I've applauded Valve for allowing LAN play or simultaneous offline play of the same game on separate PCs with only one account. But an issue I've recently been running into is when I'm playing Team Fortress 2 and my son wants to play any other Steam game. What other games DRM affects the playability of other games you own? Imagine if SecuRom detected a failed activation during install and disabled other SecuRom protected games on your PC.
December 5, 2008 1:28:34 PM

thats why i pretty much say steam is just as bad as securom

anything that makes a game harder to launch and run than pirated game will cause piracy a people like easy.

all forms of DRM lead to extra piracy.

DRM helps the user who bought the game in no way, it just adds extra useless steps that they have to do in order to play the game, steam it's self is a resource hog

it fails to allow you to play your games at random times


would you shop at amazon.com if they required you to install a special firewall that monitors your traffic to make sure your not trying to brute force their ftp server? (basically it does nothing for you at all, but waste system resources in order to make sure your not trying to hack their servers)

no one likes having any software installed that does nothing for them, thats what we call malware

malware does nothing for the user but

if you list malware by usefulness to the user, then what you will find is

securom
steam
sasser worm
antivirus 2009
MS08-067 Gimmiv Worm
Cabir.a
and so on..

all of those files listed do nothing for the user

dictionary.com
Main Entry: malware
Part of Speech: n
Definition: software, such as viruses, intended to damage or disable a computer system; short for malicious software; also written mal-ware


securom, in many cases, it has caused damage to the windows install
it damages paid software such as alcohol 120%
it slows the system down by loading drivers during the system bootup in order to make sure you are not pirating their stuff


steam does much of the same thing

while steam is slightly more useful than securom as it has some features that a user may use. it is still malware,

just like weather bug, it tells you the weather but it is also spyware


here are other common DRM problems

http://forums.guru3d.com/showthread.php?p=2807382

this is the very meaning of malware, causes damage to the OS or other installed software


" Some versions of SecuROM install a shell extension named CmdLineContextMenu Class, which checks every executable file when context menu is opened. If the file has a path non-native to the system locale, the extension malfunctions and block the Windows shell. This makes Windows explorer unresponsive and context menus unavailable."
December 5, 2008 1:41:19 PM

Some fair points.
December 5, 2008 1:51:16 PM

BTW, I really like Steam. I just think it's fair to point out that it's success goes right along with the use of DRM, not in spite of it. People like to try and point out "Look at how well Steam does without DRM" which just isn't true.
December 5, 2008 1:55:40 PM

razor512 said:

if you list malware by usefulness to the user, then what you will find is

securom
steam
sasser worm
antivirus 2009
MS08-067 Gimmiv Worm
Cabir.a
and so on..

Disagree with the order of your first two. At least Steam updates your games automatically - Securom does nothing as helpful as that!
December 5, 2008 2:33:03 PM

And steam can be uninstalled/ not started with the PC
December 5, 2008 2:57:46 PM

Quote:
if you list malware by usefulness to the user, then what you will find is
securom
steam
sasser worm
antivirus 2009
MS08-067 Gimmiv Worm
Cabir.a
and so on..



Quote:
steam does much of the same thing
while steam is slightly more useful than securom as it has some features that a user may use. it is still malware,


You contradict yourself.
December 5, 2008 5:22:10 PM

nope, it would have been a contradiction if i said ALL but i said "much"

much of what steam does is similar to malware, where it differs is that steam has some useful features

securom has 100% none

a program doesn't have to be 100% useless to be seen as malware

many malware apps that don't exploit the system to install will often trick the user into installing it be offering something that they can use. some offer convert certain files, others offer the ability print coupons and many other features, thats so the user wont just see it as spyware even though those apps inject ads into other web pages, they also log searches and record email addresses in order to add them to a database where they can be spammed
December 5, 2008 5:25:39 PM

Quote:
if you list malware by usefulness to the user, then what you will find is
securom
steam

sasser worm
antivirus 2009
MS08-067 Gimmiv Worm
Cabir.a
and so on..


Quote:
while steam is slightly more useful than securom as it has some features that a user may use. it is still malware,
December 5, 2008 5:50:05 PM

djcoolmasterx said:
Quote:
if you list malware by usefulness to the user, then what you will find is
securom
steam

sasser worm
antivirus 2009
MS08-067 Gimmiv Worm
Cabir.a
and so on..


Quote:
while steam is slightly more useful than securom as it has some features that a user may use. it is still malware,

djcoolmaster,
I suggest you just do what I did a long time ago and start treating Razor like the forum homeless guy just walking down the street babbling non-sense to himself. Trying to make sense of his post will only lead to headaches.
December 5, 2008 5:51:46 PM

Thanks for the tip :lol: 
December 5, 2008 5:52:24 PM

Just for fun Razor, by your definition of "malware" please name one application that is not "malware".
December 5, 2008 6:34:06 PM

the list is not really in order but securom and steam is malware

like i said a program doesn't have to be 100% useless to be malware. if software had to be 100% useless to be seen as malware then most of the items currently detected by virus scans and spyware scanners would be removed from the list as many malware apps have some features designed to lour a user into installing it, for example, doing things like showing the weather, or acting as an alarm clock or a pda style appointment calendar

it is annoying especially if you have a job fixing computers because it is just incredibly annoying when someone calls you over to fix their pc, then they complain when their reminder app doesn't work, well what do you want me to do, reverse engineer the program and make a new version that doesn't change your homepage and randomly open web pages filled with ads...

because people wont willingly install a program thats 100% useless (thats why theres no securom warning on the box when you buy a game, you find out after you buy and it's too late to get your money back)

if you make malware and you cant exploit their system to get your malware installed, then all you need to do is write a small app that does some random thing that can be seen as useful to at least a few people that way they will willingly infect their own system

and thats what steam does
December 5, 2008 7:22:26 PM

razor512 said:
the list is not really in order but securom and steam is malware

like i said a program doesn't have to be 100% useless to be malware. if software had to be 100% useless to be seen as malware then most of the items currently detected by virus scans and spyware scanners would be removed from the list as many malware apps have some features designed to lour a user into installing it, for example, doing things like showing the weather, or acting as an alarm clock or a pda style appointment calendar

it is annoying especially if you have a job fixing computers because it is just incredibly annoying when someone calls you over to fix their pc, then they complain when their reminder app doesn't work, well what do you want me to do, reverse engineer the program and make a new version that doesn't change your homepage and randomly open web pages filled with ads...

because people wont willingly install a program thats 100% useless (thats why theres no securom warning on the box when you buy a game, you find out after you buy and it's too late to get your money back)

if you make malware and you cant exploit their system to get your malware installed, then all you need to do is write a small app that does some random thing that can be seen as useful to at least a few people that way they will willingly infect their own system

and thats what steam does

Then what isn't malware?
December 6, 2008 1:20:41 AM

Let me try to set this out clearly in points rather then rambling like a moron and posting without capitalisation.

In what way could Steam be negatively affecting me?

Stealing information if you are concerned about this then you shouldn't be using google :p 

Usage data? - I want them to know what games people are playing so they can make more of them.

Hardware configuration? - I want them to know what hardware they need to support.

Technical

Stopping games from being playable? - fortunatly never had this problem.

DRM? - Ofcourse no DRM would be nice but realistically this is the best system, only have a problem with 3rd party DRM which they now indicate if a product has it on the store page.


How is it not just a "small app that does some random thing that can be seen as useful "

Can download my games anywhere

No physical media to be damaged

Often cheaper

Automatic updating

Community features

Steam cloud

Very stable


Now maybe for you razor, Steam may seem like malware but it isn't hurting me nor the vast majority of users who are satisfied with it. Parhaps you should go off and try to find one piece of software that isnt malware in some way.

Also learn how to write lists.

Quote:
if you list malware by usefulness to the user


Quote:
the list is not really in order
December 6, 2008 2:49:10 AM

it is malware if it purposely does anything undesirable to the user

having games randomly fail to work because steam cant talk to the DRM server is something very undesirable

having a game fail to activate because a company decided to kill the DRM server is also undesirable

both steam and securom go by the saying "if I'm going down, then I'm taking you with me"

this business model didn't do too well with yahoo music store and msn music store



December 6, 2008 11:53:57 AM

How is steam going down a deliberate act against the users? The have an invested intrest in keeping it up because they sell games through it.

There is a usefull feature called: OFFLINE MODE

Quote:
it is malware if it purposely does anything undesirable to the user


A copy of COD4 for example, it has an install size of around 6-7gb, this is undesirable because I don't like using diskspace up. Does this make COD4 malware? The installer deliberatly put these files on my hard disk and that is undesirable, so by your logic it must be malware.

Find a single piece of software that doesnt do something undesirable and I'll show you a green dog.
December 6, 2008 8:17:54 PM

djcoolmasterx said:
How is steam going down a deliberate act against the users? The have an invested intrest in keeping it up because they sell games through it.

There is a usefull feature called: OFFLINE MODE

Quote:
it is malware if it purposely does anything undesirable to the user


A copy of COD4 for example, it has an install size of around 6-7gb, this is undesirable because I don't like using diskspace up. Does this make COD4 malware? The installer deliberatly put these files on my hard disk and that is undesirable, so by your logic it must be malware.

Find a single piece of software that doesnt do something undesirable and I'll show you a green dog.



but is cod4 deliberately taking up more space than it needs, in the install folder, do you see large 1+gb dummy data files

malware is something that deliberately causes problems. steam offline mode is less functional than a pirate copy of the same game

if the game was really 1GB and they added 6GB worth of dummy data files then it would be malware as the extra stuff does nothing for the user but waste space


it is malware is they deliberately do something undesirable to the users system, for example. securom causing explorer.exe to crash, securom causing games to fail to run because the user has a cd burning app that it doesn't like installed, securom preventing a game from running because a user upgraded some hardware and used up all of the activations

and many other problems

December 6, 2008 8:24:19 PM

Then how is steam deliberatly trying to harm users?

Its a compromise, this is how the real world works.
December 6, 2008 8:47:38 PM

Quote:
but is cod4 deliberately taking up more space than it needs, in the install folder, do you see large 1+gb dummy data files

Yes they are deliberately using larger files then what is needed. Look at the size of shooters 10 years ago. They were only a fraction of the size that COD4 is. Doom fit on a couple floppies, COD4 takes up a DVD. So obviously they must intentionally be doing something to make file sizes bigger.
December 6, 2008 9:21:23 PM

They must be doing "some random thing that can be seen as useful to at least a few people "
December 6, 2008 9:39:13 PM

purplerat said:
Quote:
but is cod4 deliberately taking up more space than it needs, in the install folder, do you see large 1+gb dummy data files

Yes they are deliberately using larger files then what is needed. Look at the size of shooters 10 years ago. They were only a fraction of the size that COD4 is. Doom fit on a couple floppies, COD4 takes up a DVD. So obviously they must intentionally be doing something to make file sizes bigger.



but that extra space is needed as the graphics are better and the game has more content. if it was wasting space then you would see things like dat files coming up as all 0's in a hex editor thats when you have useless data wasting soace and the game taking more than it needs.

December 6, 2008 10:36:26 PM

So you are saying an unwanted thing is justified if it is required for the program to function as wanted?
December 6, 2008 11:47:12 PM

theres a fair trade, if you want cod4 to run, you need to spare a few gigs of space to install it, theres no way around that, the cracked version and paid version require storage space

but in the case of steam and securom, both are not needed in order for your games to work, the DRM in steam is not needed for HL2 to work

the drm is unwanted and does nothing for the user in return there is no trade off at all, thats puts DRM in the same category as viruses and trojans

cod4, takes a few GB of space, but it doesn't cause explorer to crash or cause system instability or slow your system startup with kernel level drivers and other crap and the space taken up by cod4 is needed to run the game

DRM is unwanted crap that does unwanted things

same applies to real life

DRM explained using info from a biology text book



if a company wants to add drm then it shouldn't be noticed by the user or add any extra hoops to jump through

(it is useless to the user, it does nothing for them, it only has unwanted effects)


no drm at all makes the users happy, happy users are more willing to buy products from your company
Anonymous
December 7, 2008 3:28:56 AM

The line is so thin, and your both so utterly close to it...

I have to say... What the F*ck is the point of arguing it?
December 7, 2008 11:01:17 AM

JUSTICE!

But DRM doesn't prevent piracy..

Razor maybe the conclusion should be that all software has negative points its up to the user to decide whether the positive points justify the negitive. Malware is something that is deliberatly trying to harm the user directly. Harm may come to the user indirectly as a side effect when attemting to do something positive(COD4 diskspace in exchange for better graphics), this does not make it malware.

In the case of Steam with its account based buying and distrabuting of games it requires the user to log on so it knows who bought what. As a result of this only one person at a time can play the game, this being steam's DRM system, in my case Steam's features outweigh this. Securom'as DRM is not a by-product of a useful system and has no benifits to the legitimate user at all.
December 7, 2008 11:46:25 AM

Quote:
Oh btw, it is only one person online who can play a game, on a lan you can have other people playing a game using the one account.

i used to do this to test things out in dod:s when i played it. Run the game on my laptop and on my comp and try out things like sniping positions and the like. Sad i know but useful.

I understand that and I believe I mentioned it in my post. And you can search my other posts to see where I've repeatedly praised Valve for allowing that. I use it all the time with games like Titan Quest to play multilayer with my son. But it's not as clean as only one person can play online at a time. That is technically true but it does come with some caveats such as the person playing online has to be the last one to sign into Steam otherwise they will get kicked from their game when someone else does. It would be nice if Valve fixed that, but I don't know if they even consider that a problem. Personally it doesn't bother me a whole lot, but as far as DRM goes that is pretty restrictive to have the playability of one game affect another.
December 14, 2008 3:58:08 AM

mi1ez said:
Just to expand, Valve think most DRM "is dumb"

http://www.custompc.co.uk/news/605286/most-drm-is-just-...

...However GTA4 will still be shipping with SecuROM7, even from Steam...


At least its not the EA 5 machine activation BS SecuRom. Its unlimited machines and activations.

purplerat said:
You mean most, but not including the DRM Valve uses, which is the most restrictive form of DRM out there.


I prefer VALVes DRM, Steam, over anything else. It doesn't somehow screw up my computer (Sonys BMG DRM), it doesn't rootkit itself and I don't have to activate a game each time I install it. Once its on my account its there until Steam dies, which I hope never does.

!