Victory

Institute a refund policy

This petition made change with 30 supporters!


Steam is a major Internet-based digital distribution platform, especially for computer games. Unfortunately, Steam offers no refund policy, offering little recompense for dissatisfied customers. As a result, customers have to resort to Steam community forums and wait for developers' responses to valid technical problems (ex., the game does not load or crashes). However, from a developer's perspective, it is not easy to identify a forum thread post stating a valid technical problem aside from an invalid one. This tends to lead a soured gaming experience for the customer and insufficient feedback for the developer.

If a refund policy was instituted, this would help to assuage the tension and connection between the developer and the customer.

As of today, Steam's current stance is, as dictated as here

"As with most software products, unless required by local law, we do not offer refunds or exchanges on games, DLC or in-game items purchased on our website or through the Steam Client. Please review Section 3 of the Steam Subscriber Agreement for more information."

A brief excerpt of Section 3 from the aforementioned Steam Subscriber Agreement states: 

"All  charges incurred on Steam, and all purchases made with the Steam Wallet, are payable in advance and are not refundable in whole or in part, regardless of the payment method, as expressly set forth in this agreement."

While Steam cites that most software products are not applicable for refunds, here are a few example software distribution vendors that offer a refund policy:

EA-Origin:

"You may return EA full game downloads (PC or Mac) and participating third party titles purchased on Origin for a full refund. Refund requests can be made within 24 hours after you first launch the game, within seven days from your date of purchase, or within seven days from the game’s release date if you pre-ordered, whichever comes first. And if you purchase a new EA game within the first 30 days of its release date and can’t play it due to technical reasons within EA’s control, you can request a refund within 72 hours after you first launch the game instead of 24. "

Google Play Store:

"After purchasing an app or game on Google Play, you can return it within two hours for a full refund.

If the return period has passed, you can contact the app developer directly. You can find an app developer's contact information listed on an app or game's detail page on Google Play. For instructions, go to help with an Android app or game

Keep in mind you can't return an app or game more than once."

App Store:

"If you experience a technical issue with an app, first contact the developer of the app for assistance. Their support contact information can be found on the app's page in the Mac App Store. If that does not resolve the issue, contact Mac App Store Customer Support."

There are also guides to help with initiating a refund request on the App Store.

Tell Steam that they need to stop treating their customers as third-class and recognize how important their customer base is to them. There are other game distribution platforms that already offer a refund policy. Tell Steam that there is no longer an excuse for not offering a refund policy and taking advantage of their customers.

As customers, we recognize the hard efforts of developers, but understandably not every game is going to run smoothly. There will be technical issues. As of today, there is no easy way to voice our problems or dissatisfaction (and have them be heard) to Steam and/or developers. We need a fairer and more efficient system to provide feedback to developers.

Tell Steam that they need to treat their customers/developers with respect and institute a refund policy. 

 

 

 



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