Lawsuit claims Valve is abusing its market dominance to keep prices high

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A lawsuit filed earlier this week accuses Valve of using its effective monopoly on the PC gaming marketplace to force developers to sell their games on all other digital storefronts at the same price as they’re offered on Steam. The suit says a “Most Favored Nations” provision in the Steam Distribution Agreement, in which a seller agrees to give a client—in this case, Steam—the best terms that it makes available anywhere else, means that other storefronts, like the Epic Games Store or the Microsoft Store, cannot compete on price, and thus are unable to effectively compete at all.

“The MFN [Most Favored Nations clause] has the effect of keeping prices to consumers high, as price competition by platforms would cause the prices of PC games sold to consumers to decrease,” the lawsuit, available via The Hollywood Reporter, states. “The MFN also hinders innovation and suppresses output, as it acts as an additional barrier to entry by potential rival platforms and as higher prices lead to less sales of PC games.”



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