Valve has been the focal point of many legal incidents over the second half of 2016. During the entire year, eSports betting (most frequently skin betting) was under the microscope because of unregulated and illegal operations that were taking a huge share of the profits. Not only that, but they did not have a good system of preventing minors from betting their valuable digital possessions, making them vulnerable to gambling addiction at such young age. After realizing about this major issue, there was a huge public exposure on the topic, putting Valve and their precious Steam platform under a huge amount of legal issues. Even though the incidents started all the way back in summer of 2016, some of them are still not resolved, and now, there's even a class action lawsuit against Valve.
After those 2 waves of cease and desist letters Valve sent out to illegal skin betting sites, things have actually calmed down a bit… but not for long. It did not take them an awfully lot of time to find new holes in Steam's API and come up with a new way of providing their customers with illegal skin bets. Valve was, once again, beaten, and this time they were threatened with bigger sanctions by the WSGC (Washington State Gambling Commission).
They had to find a way to block all potential holes in their API which would render the illegal betting sites unusable… but that was just a game of cat and mouse since, even if Valve did fix the issue, it was just a matter of time until another exploit would be found. Valve soon responded that there's no legal support behind those accusations. In other words, Valve was not intending on spending another dime on trying to fix the illegal skin betting. All of that actually took an interesting turn a couple of weeks ago…
Parents are filing a class action lawsuit against Valve
Parents whose children lost thousands of bucks by betting on their in-game items (skins) on these illegal sites have filed a class action lawsuit against Valve because of their negligence to stop their illegal operations. The case was initially reported in Seattle's federal Court but was quickly rejected in October the same year.
After their painful loss, the parents turned to district courts hoping to put an end to Valve's negligence and their children's gambling addictions. They claim Valve not only allowed those illegal skin betting sites, but also profited from their transactions, mostly by inaction to stop them. We are left to see how will this class action lawsuit against Valve end, but looking at the past examples of people suing huge companies, we will most likely have to express our condolences to the parents.
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