Valve posts consumer rights notice following repeated defeat in Australia

Valve posts consumer rights notice following repeated defeat in Australia

In the wake of Valve losing a lawsuit filed against it by the Australian Competition Consumer Commission - and subsequently losing an appeal - the PC games giant has posted a notice on its website explaining what rights consumers in the region have.

In a post on its blog, the Steam giant details what happened in this lawsuit - that it had been found to be engaging in misleading conduct that was contrary to Australian Consumer Rights Law. More information about that can be found here.

The firm has detailed the right that Australian consumers have, saying that video games come with guarantees and that users have the right to replace products if they are not "of acceptable quality".

"When you buy video games from Valve Corporation as a consumer located in Australia, the video games come with guarantees under the Australian Consumer Law that cannot be excluded, including a guarantee that the video games are of acceptable quality," the firm wrote.

"You are entitled to a replacement or refund from the retail supplier of the video games for a major failure and for compensation for any other reasonably foreseeable loss or damage. You are also entitled to have the video games repaired or replaced by the retail supplier of the video games if the video games fail to be of acceptable quality and the failure does not amount to a major failure. Certain other rights are available directly against manufacturers that cannot be excluded or limited."

This lawsuit began life in 2014 and was eventually heard in 2016. At the end of 2017, the Federal Court of Australia found Valve at fault and fined the games giant $3m. The Steam firm appealed the decision to the Australian High Court and... lost again. 

In short, the source of the lawsuit was that Valve did not offer refunds or returns on products sold via its Steam PC storefront. These were subsequently introduced worldwide in 2015. 

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.