Valve has become yet another company to get its users to agree not to sue in their Terms of Service, falling into the ranks of other companies like Microsoft and Sony. When agreeing to the terms set down to use Steam, users supposedly sign away their rights to file suit against the company; Valve has elected to deny consumers the right to file class-action lawsuits.
Valve issued a comment on the issue, saying:
“In far too many cases however, class actions don’t provide any real benefit to users and instead impose unnecessary expense and delay, and are often designed to benefit the class action lawyers who craft and litigate these claims. We think this new dispute resolution process is faster and better for you and Valve while avoiding unnecessary costs, and that it will therefore benefit the community as a whole.”
Though this certainly works in the favor of Valve by denying users the right to be represented in class-action cases, one has to wonder just how well this works out for the consumer. Is the restriction of rights and due legal process in the name of efficient production worthwhile, or are we sacrificing too much to let companies flourish? Some states like Illinois say that this type of language in contracts isn’t even legal, but only time will tell if these types of agreements stand.