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Walled Garden Outfit Valve Accuses Apple Of Operating A Walled Garden

Discussion in 'News' started by qubit, Oct 16, 2011.

  1. qubit

    qubit Overclocked quantum bit

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    You've got to laugh at the hypocrisy of big companies sometimes. It's a well known fact that Apple operates a very closed and controlling walled garden eco system with all of their products, courtesy of the late Steve Jobs. Examples include the iPhone, which can only purchase apps from the official Apple apps store and the iPod, which can also only sync with iTunes, both due to deliberate vendor lock-in using a combination of hardware and software DRM (Digital Restrictions Management). Apple claims that this is to ensure a seamless, consistent and high quality user experience. Savvy users know this to be only half the story, instead it's there to shut out competition and lock you in to Apple for everything in order to charge high prices for allegedly "premium" product. The only way to avoid this, is to jailbreak the devices (break the DRM) which conveniently (for Apple) voids the warranty on these expensive gadgets. Thankfully, this process is no longer underground, due to a recent court ruling that said jailbreaking was legal, much to Apple's displeasure.

    However, the equally closed Valve, with their Steam gaming platform and it's account-based DRM has accused Apple of being a closed system! They are also "concerned" about it. This happened in an interview between Bellevue-based Valve's Gabe Newell and leading games investor Ed Fries at the WTIA TechNW conference. This has been reported in The Seattle Times in Brier Dudley's blog.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    The Steam platform gives the illusion of openness, because it allows such things as game backups to be made and also allows a game to be played on any number of computers (one at a time of course) simply by installing the Steam client, the game and logging in. Like Apple, you can also only purchase from its own store, of course. However, it's certainly one of the "best" DRMs out there as far as DRM goes, given the various features of the Steam client, such as auto updates and social networking. However, the huge "but" in all this though, is that Valve do not let you sell on your used Steam games as a matter of corporate policy (SSA section E,(i)), although the system to transfer game access from one account to another has always been present and correct. This removes an individual's first sale rights as defined in law, but makes games companies ecstatic, because they have complained bitterly about used game sales allegedly eating into their business, as if they have any right to that used game money in the first place. It's exactly like car companies stopping you from selling your used motor, alleging that it hurts the sales of new cars. Utter rubbish. One wonders if this unreasonable restriction would truly stand up in court if someone with money took them on?

    In the interview, Fries asked if these were the best of times, or the worst. For the clearest answer to this question, let's quote from Dudley's blog. Newell replied:

    The conversation then moved onto consoles, but soon returned to discussion of closed systems. Notice how these closed systems act like the worst kind of monopolies, with the company running it squeezing their partners so hard that they make no money at all. Therefore, their greed ends up killing their golden goose and the business model fails for everyone. This is just the same as expecting people to work an average 9-5 office job without pay. Ridiculous. Dudley continues with:

    So there you have it. Steam is wonderfully open in the sense that developers can use it flexibly and they don't charge high commissions, but the customer (gamer) is locked in tight, like a straitjacket. How is this an open system?

    As the old saying goes, it's the pot calling the kettle black. Enjoy the picture.

    [​IMG]

    As well as our primary news source, thanks also go to our secondary sources linked to in the article: Techdirt, TG Daily and Wikipedia.

    Source: The Seattle Times
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2011
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  2. Easy Rhino

    Easy Rhino Linux Advocate

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    huh?
     
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  3. Frick

    Frick Fishfaced Nincompoop

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    How is this news and not opinion?
     
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  4. Easy Rhino

    Easy Rhino Linux Advocate

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    it should be in the opinion section or something. also, the title makes no sense. i had to read into the article before i could understand the title. it needs to be changed.
     
  5. Kreij

    Kreij Senior Monkey Moderator Staff Member

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    There is nothing wrong with editorials and/or opinion pieces. The problem is that there is no editorial/opinion section to put them into at the moment. There should be.
    I asked W1zz about doing editorials and he said fine, put them in their respective section. The problem is that editorials can many time cross multiple sections in their content (hardware/software).

    Anyway ... Steam is a more open system in that as a developer you are not required to only sell your product on Steam. You can sell your game on Steam, on your own website and anywhere else you would like all at the same time.
     
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  6. AphexDreamer

    AphexDreamer

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    Interesting article, something I was well aware of and dread but sadly its just one of those things that just is.

    I hope legal actions are taken, perhaps a class action law suit that would push steam to allow us to manage our games the same way we would expect when we physically own them.

    If we can physically trade and sell the games we own the it goes to say we should be able to virtually trade and sell the games we own.

    I remain optimistic that something like this will be done either through steam or a new digital distribution software that will give steam a run for its money.

    Walled Garden Term
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2011
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  7. [H]@RD5TUFF

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    Apple opperating a proprietery totolitarian closed system . . . . shocker!:rolleyes:
     
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  8. theeldest

    theeldest

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    This is a ridiculous piece. Apple with their hardware+software ecosystem is quite a different story from Valve with Steam.

    And using steam isn't a requirement... You can buy games through other channels.
     
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  9. reverze

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    how is valve anything like apple.... valve isnt an OS and isnt hardware, nor are you ever forced to use their steam platform unless the devs,and not valve , choose to publish on steam only.

    that said, if TPU is going with these pointless articles which i can find a dozen of on neowin, ill just stick with neowin.
     
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  10. XooM New Member

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    This is garbage. Why is this on the front page?
     
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  11. [H]@RD5TUFF

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    If apple was smart it would partner with steam to add more games to it's platform, there is a lot of anti M$ people who run it because there is no other option, I might actually boot into OSX more than once a month if I could play my games.
     
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  12. Easy Rhino

    Easy Rhino Linux Advocate

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    id like valve to make a linux compatible version of their games and also support steam on linux. at least having a few popular linux games would really open up a new world to developers who want to put together a game in an open environment.
     
  13. Moose

    Moose New Member

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    Ok I don't really understand why all these replies are saying that this is crap. Apple is the biggest DRM using company there is they would like your whole life to be Apple controlled with no competition, paying huge sums to Apple for services others give for free.

    The only thing that is a bit wrong is steam, although it's DRM steam doesn't uninstall all other programs from your system and take it over so you can only use steam to get programs. It even goes so far as to happily coexist with other programs not bought on steam allowing you to have the steam overlay on them if you want it.

    As for the title I'd have thoguht it was obvious for anyone who knows about technology.
     
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  14. qubit

    qubit Overclocked quantum bit

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    Thanks for the walled garden definition. I've added it to the article. :toast:

    And yes, competition is what's needed here. If Origin ends up being run in a similar way to Steam, then perhaps this will come about. I won't hold my breath though. :ohwell:
     
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  15. Easy Rhino

    Easy Rhino Linux Advocate

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    not only is the title OPINION it is also too wordy. it should read, "Valve Accuses Apple of Operating a Walled Garden."

    news articles are about reporting facts behind events, not drawing conclusions based on other people's opinions.
     
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  16. LDNL

    LDNL

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    Qubit :slap:. Kinda questionable why we had those bf3/mw3 articles on the front page.
     
  17. qubit

    qubit Overclocked quantum bit

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    Ok, I'll dive in.

    The title is fine as it is, because the whole article is about the hypocrisy displayed by Valve. Your suggestion would neuter that.

    There is an editorial button I could click, which would put a stylized "Editorial" icon next to it. I've been mulling over clicking it. What do you think? :toast:
     
  18. Frick

    Frick Fishfaced Nincompoop

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    Doo eeet. News is "Powercolor readies awesome GPU" or stuff like that, this is not news.

    Imo. :)
     
  19. Easy Rhino

    Easy Rhino Linux Advocate

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    this is not news, it is an editorial.
     
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  20. Moose

    Moose New Member

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    I happen to agree with you that the title shouldn't show opinion but the point I was making is that everyone is saying it doesn't make sense when it is very obvious if you know anything about the companies, I had never heard the term "walled garden" before but I understood the title immediately.
     
  21. qubit

    qubit Overclocked quantum bit

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    Ok done, editorial it is! :) Heck, it's a Sunday, time for something a little different. ;)
     
  22. Kreij

    Kreij Senior Monkey Moderator Staff Member

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    I like the editorial/opinion pieces that Qubit writes. I've felt that TPU should have editorials for quite some time.
    I've known about this issue (Gabe's opinion on Apple) for several days from reading other sites and this editorial is well researched and well done.
    The title should display opinion, because ... (drum roll) ... it's Qubit opinion!!

    It does not matter if I agree or not. Editorials are great for generating discussion and liven things up in a way that hard news cannot do. You, as a TPU member, have a LOT more freedom of expression than on many other sites, and this give you a chance to jump in and agree with Qubit or beat him up without (too much) fear of getting your ass kicked.

    Keep up the good work Q. I disagree with your opinions many times, but that's what makes these editorials entertaining for me. :toast:

    I think I just wrote an editorial on Qubit's editorial. :eek: :D
     
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  23. [H]@RD5TUFF

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    yes please!!
     
  24. kid41212003

    kid41212003

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    I think stating your own opinion first before showing people the fact is a bad writing structure, but that's just my opinion.

    And since the title is giving the impression of "Valve is accusing Apple of operating a closed platform", it should be focusing on showing information about that.
     
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  25. silkstone

    silkstone

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    I agree. Editorials are fine, you don;t have to agree with them. It's just a pity that there isn't a dedicated editorial section.
    I love sites like ArsTech which run frequent opinion pieces. Even if a don't agree with them, they are certainly interesting to read.
     
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