It looks like SteamSpy might have to shut down

It looks like SteamSpy might have to shut down

Changes to Steam's profile privacy settings might just have killed third-party data site SteamSpy.

Taking to Twitter (below), founder Sergey Galyonkin said that Valve's move to have users' game libraries hidden by default means that the data site will no longer be able to operate. Since its inception, the outfit has been dependant on this information.

Changes to user profile privacy settings were announced via a blog post - and can be read here - but the move to hide consumer libraries by default, the aspect that has actually damaged SteamSpy, is not mentioned.

It's possible that Valve has made these changes to the platform based on Facebook's recent legal run-in where the firm has come under severe criticism for not doing enough to protect user data. And - as Epic's Tim Sweeney points out in the comments under Galyonkin's tweet - no other retailer displays a consumer's entire purchase history by default.

As for SteamSpy, Galyonkin says that he'll be able to estimate sales by concurrent user data, but this will take much more time than the methodology he had previously been employing.

Though Valve is well within its rights, and potentially is correct, to make these changes, seeing SteamSpy go would be rather sad. The outfit has provided an absolutely vital resource for the PC games market and actually provides a look at how titles are actually performing upon launch. 

PCGamesInsider Contributing Editor

Alex Calvin is a freelance journalist who writes about the business of games. He started out at UK trade paper MCV in 2013 and left as deputy editor over three years later. In June 2017, he joined Steel Media as the editor for new site In October 2019 he left this full-time position at the company but still contributes to the site on a daily basis. He has also written for, VGC, Games London, The Observer/Guardian and Esquire UK.