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Steam Cracked?

Steam Hacked, Credit Cards May Be Exposed on Gameworld Network reports indications that the Steam system may have suffered a security breach. Some seemingly private information has been posted to a Steam-haters forum, along with a threat to expose further customer data. The breach has not been confirmed.

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86. Re: Credit cards Apr 27, 2007, 10:12 Happyclam
 
would say Valve would refund their money as they are unable to play the game.

Agreed. But they don't currently do so. Therefore I think the 100,000 people have earned their right to bitch and moan.



Hm. You'll have to show me some proof about that, because I don't believe a company would leave themselves legally liable like that. Also, that refund would only apply to games developed by Valve. You would probably have to go to the other developers to get refunds from other companies. A pain in the ass to be sure, but it is standard practice among distributors, online and retail.

 
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85. Re: Credit cards Apr 27, 2007, 10:09 Happyclam
 
I would brush up on reading comprehension because I think you're missing on some stuff.

For one, I said that even though you may be encrypted, doesn't mean the other guy is. Not vice versa. I am never arguing for a lack of encryption.

For two, my argument centers around the fact that you think you are secure, when, in fact, you are not as secure as you would probably like.

I agree encryption is a good thing, but that doesn't mean you're secure. I can capture your data, spend however long I like on it and crack it. As I stated before, the only limiter in my ability to process your data is time. UNIX has many types of software that are packet sniffers, some of which have been translated to the Windows platform. I will point you to this, which should illustrate my point: http://www.mycrypto.net/encryption/encryption_crack.html
That article is already several years old, btw. Also, think about all of those zombie pc's out there which the cracker can then use to crack the encryption as well and suddenly he is up to par with small business, if not corporation levels.

The only point I was making on Internet security was that you are not as secure as you think. At no time was I arguing against anything that would make it easy for your computer to be compromised. You should keep your software updated, not open suspicious emails, stay away from questionable websites, use an encryption tool like PGP, which is actually a very good tool. But realize, your goal is to make it not worth the cracker's time to get your information, because you're never really going to prevent them from getting it.

 
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84. Re: Credit cards Apr 27, 2007, 03:43 Bhruic
 
I would say Valve would refund their money as they are unable to play the game.

Agreed. But they don't currently do so. Therefore I think the 100,000 people have earned their right to bitch and moan.

 
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83. Re: Credit cards Apr 27, 2007, 03:41 Bhruic
 
I was going to post a rant about how stupid your last post was, but I decided against it, it's just not worth it. You've demonstrated, to my mind, that you don't know enough about internet security to have a real discussion about it (your comment about the "other guy" needing encryption still makes me shiver).

As for the price issue looks like I was wrong on that one - which is good news. It's a good sign that Steam is at least moving in the right direction (from my perspective).

 
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82. Re: Credit cards Apr 27, 2007, 01:01 Happyclam
 
So why should Valve change their code to accomodate the 100,000 when it could potentially affect the other 19,900,000?

The rest of your points were decent, but this one seems to have swerved into left field. Are you honestly trying to make a case that it is justifiable to take 100,000 people's money, and then not provide them with the product/service that they paid for?


Not at all. I would say Valve would refund their money as they are unable to play the game. That ball is in their court. But, the reality of the situation in that example is that, more than likely, something on those people's computers is preventing them from being able to play, and that is hardly Valve's responsibility. We both know those 100,000 people would be bitching and moaning to Valve about how their software is crap and that they should bend over backwards to solve their problem. My point is that Valve should write them off in the short term while trying to solve the problem for the long term. Because of the way PC architecture is designed, that problem could concievably become a problem for a lot more in the future. But if it is a hardware problem, how is it the software company's fault? Or even responsibility? There's not much they can do in that kind of situation.

 
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81. Re: Credit cards Apr 27, 2007, 00:54 Happyclam
 
This was simply in response to people complaining that information can be stolen on the internet. It's a fact that when you transmit over the Internet, it can be viewed by anyone who wishes to take a look at your information. The only way to prevent that is by not being connected to the Internet in the first place. It was showing my point that you are exposed when you are connected to the Internet.

Hardly the only way. Any proper encryption will stop people from viewing your information.

My argument is that you make it as difficult as you can, but realize that you're not totally secure, so long as you are connected to the Internet. That is a simple fact, not opinion, btw.

It's an opinion until you can prove it. And as it's rather difficult to prove an open-ended statement, I think you're in for an uphill battle.


What proof do you require? TJ Maxx, the Pentagon, all of the zombie computers out there, Internet Explorer/Netscape having security flaws exposed almost weekly, viruses that run rampant through the net on a daily basis? I'm not sure what more proof you need. You might want to visit Cert.org, or grc.com. Cert might be a little advanced for you, but I have faith in you. And encryption is liked adding one of those steering wheel locks that used to be popular a couple of years back. Yes, it makes it more difficult, but not impossible. Also, just because you are using encryption, the other guy isn't. Also, not all of your traffic is encrypted, just fyi. I'm not going to go through lectures of why thinking you are totally secure is a bad idea. If you don't see it, or simply want to deny it, then it's your computer. You're like the guy in a nice house in a nice suburb who thinks he's immune to crime that happens elesewhere.

By your statement of saying that Valve can disable according to their whim, you are suggesting that Valve can disable your software whenever they feel like for whatever reason. While this is true, it is misleading. Valve is highly unlikely to do so just on a whim. Hence my statement of you thinking they were bent on screwing over the customer. That depends on if you believe in their vision or not. Me, I could care less about their vision. I enjoy some of the games they have, I can play those games, so beyond that, it is of little consequence.

I was wrong concerning Stardock. Stardock Central is becoming a competitor to Steam, coming from a different direction. It looks interesting and it may provide Steam with a good competition if they can get other game developers on board, besides the three they have currently. The problem is going to be security, I believe, since Stardock doesn't use DRM, and a lot of developers like their DRM. It will be interesting to see how things pan out. As far as DRM goes, you'll find that it's in direct response to people pirating the games on a wide scale basis. It doesn't stop it, of course, which should also be a clue about Internet Security, since no system is infallible, but it does keep the honest people honest, rather than the 'I have this game, you want a copy?'. Whether it's good or bad, it's simply a fact that came about in direct response to people taking advantage of the lack thereof.

Well, perhaps I come from a different perspective of self-entitlement. People get spoiled when they have too much of anything and no one likes things to be taken away. But you just have to measure for yourself when something becomes less than what you think it's worth. I don't think it's reached that point yet.

And as far as prices, all of the games that are $50 are 3rd party developers and not actually Valve. Half-life 2 has a list price of $49.95, but then it's crossed out and available for $14.95. So then the question is, who determines prices, and I would hazard a guess that it's not all Valve.

This comment was edited on Apr 27, 01:04.
 
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80. Re: Credit cards Apr 26, 2007, 18:04 Masa
 
You LOL LOL LOL your ass back to Oblivion, you would do well to realize other arguments other than your own exist.

Fucking arrogant prick.

 
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79. Re: Credit cards Apr 26, 2007, 14:15 Bhruic
 
This was simply in response to people complaining that information can be stolen on the internet. It's a fact that when you transmit over the Internet, it can be viewed by anyone who wishes to take a look at your information. The only way to prevent that is by not being connected to the Internet in the first place. It was showing my point that you are exposed when you are connected to the Internet.

Hardly the only way. Any proper encryption will stop people from viewing your information.

My argument is that you make it as difficult as you can, but realize that you're not totally secure, so long as you are connected to the Internet. That is a simple fact, not opinion, btw.

It's an opinion until you can prove it. And as it's rather difficult to prove an open-ended statement, I think you're in for an uphill battle.

It only takes time to break into the computer. Experience and knowledge will shorten that time, but time is really the only factor. A knowledgeable admin will be able to shorten the time a cracker has available, and so it's simply a game after that of who gets the upper hand.

That statement is only true if you have physical access to the computer. If you are trying to hack a computer over the internet, there are plenty of OSes for which that cannot, currently, be done. Just recently there was a competition to hack MacOS remotely. No one claimed the prize (until they altered the rules to allow for attacks via browsing). And MacOS is far from the most secure OS out there.

Well, you have DRM, a controlled environment to control cheating, methods of digital distribution, ability to patch the games automatically, the gathering of computer and network information about what's connected to Steam to better tailor their games to take advantage of them. We know those as the benefits.

Wait, did you just list DRM as a benefit? You must be joking, right?

Furthermore, of the options you listed, none of them require a separate client to do so. Each could be done on an individual game basis. Which would preclude the need to run separate software.

That you can't sell the games after you purchase them? Becuase they don't want you to, should be the obvious answer. Whether you agree with that or not, that's up to you and obviously you don't.

You'd think it would be obvious, as I listed it as a negative :). The issue isn't whether or not "they" want me to, the point is, I had the ability previously, now they have taken it away from me. Even if you had no interest in taking advantage of it, removing options from the consumer is, imo, a bad thing.

Reduction of prices? I buy my games for $20 bucks from Steam, which was Red Orchestra. That's a bit cheaper than the $50 for Oblivion.

What has that got to do with anything? Or did you not understand my point? When a game comes out and it's priced at $50, it generally sells for $50. 6 months later, however, it is easy to find the game for $30. 6 months after that, you might find it for $20. However, if it came out for $50 on Steam, 12 months later, it is... $50 on Steam. For those of us who choose to delay our purchases to take advantage of that, Steam is a detriment.

And please note - you may not do so. That's fine. But once again, I'm talking about the way Steam has removed customer options - and this is one of them.

By stating that Valve can disable your entire game catalog at their whim, you are suggesting that they are an evil corporation bent on nefarious deeds.

What a completely unsubstantiated leap you just made. If I suggest they you could take a gun and shoot your neighbour, did I just suggest that you are an evil person bent on nefarious deeds? Or did I just suggest you have the ability to pick up a gun and shoot your neighbour? I don't recall ever suggesting that you have any inclination to do so. Any more than I am suggesting that Valve has any plans to do so. Once again (starting to feel like a broken record here), the point isn't about whether they are going to do it, the point is that they've removed another feature from the customer. Previously, the only thing stopping me from deciding to play a game was me. Now, I have to deal with whether or not another company is going to let me. I, as a customer, shouldn't be put into a position where I have to get permission every time I want to play one of my games. Which is, effectively, what Valve did with Steam.

Stardock simply gives their software available to download from a website. I'd hardly call that the same scale as what Steam does.

That statement is, sadly, completely inaccurate. To whit:

Stardock Central is an enhanced download manager that enables users to install and manage Stardock's software products.

As a download manager, it can securely and reliably deliver software content to users. It supports download resume, download queues, and mirrored servers.

It also includes integrated chat so users can talk to Stardock personnel directly or talk to people in the Stardock community, forums, and more.

Stardock Central is designed to allow Stardock to enhance its customer service abilities by combining software distribution, technical support, and community services into a single package


That is much more than "download from a website". You are, apparently, out of date.

I don't see the evil that other people see in Steam.

I don't see "evil" in Steam. I see it eroding the rights and privileges that we've had as customers. And I see that as a bad thing. It's much the same thing with the whole "Windows for Gamers" thing that MS has going. While I can see that there are some benefits to what they are proposing, I can also see that it will require giving up rights and privileges that PC gamers have enjoyed for awhile - ones I'm not ready to give up.

This comment was edited on Apr 26, 14:17.
 
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78. Re: Credit cards Apr 26, 2007, 13:53 Bhruic
 
So why should Valve change their code to accomodate the 100,000 when it could potentially affect the other 19,900,000?

The rest of your points were decent, but this one seems to have swerved into left field. Are you honestly trying to make a case that it is justifiable to take 100,000 people's money, and then not provide them with the product/service that they paid for?

 
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77. Re: Credit cards Apr 26, 2007, 13:49 Happyclam
 
Ok, so much for logic. We are going to access the internet by... not being connected to the internet?

This was simply in response to people complaining that information can be stolen on the internet. It's a fact that when you transmit over the Internet, it can be viewed by anyone who wishes to take a look at your information. The only way to prevent that is by not being connected to the Internet in the first place. It was showing my point that you are exposed when you are connected to the Internet.

Relevance? Or are you trying to say that because someone is guarunteed to break into my car eventually, I might as well leave the door open for them?

None of them are fully secure, as has been proven time and time again.

Actually, no such thing has been proven. There are many, MANY servers/sites that have never been broken in to. This may be because people just haven't tried hard enough, or it may be because they have been unable to do so. The fact that some sites have been broken in to does not prove that any/all sites can be.


This is a specious comparison at best. My argument is that you make it as difficult as you can, but realize that you're not totally secure, so long as you are connected to the Internet. That is a simple fact, not opinion, btw. As to the plenty of server/sites that haven't been hacked, are you seriously saying that those sites are so secure they can't be broken into? I'm sorry, but that statement is laced with complete ignorance. I can look along my street and see rows of cars that haven't been broken into. Does that mean they are more secure than other cars? If you knew anything about security, you would know that most crimes are crimes of opportunity. Someone left their door open and got burned, or in computer terms, they didn't patch, opened email they shouldn't have, visited the wrong web sites, etc. Then you have the directed crimes, where someone has done something to piss another off or that it's simply a high-profile target. It only takes time to break into the computer. Experience and knowledge will shorten that time, but time is really the only factor. A knowledgeable admin will be able to shorten the time a cracker has available, and so it's simply a game after that of who gets the upper hand.

For example, why did they make it a requirement to run the actual games through the Steam client? The "piracy" excuse isn't going to cut it - Steam games are pirated as easy, if not easier, as the rest of the games out there. Why aren't we seeing a reduction in prices that match the physical side of game pricing? Why are we unable to resell the games that we puchased? Why does Valve maintain the ability to disable our entire game catalog at their whim?

Well, you have DRM, a controlled environment to control cheating, methods of digital distribution, ability to patch the games automatically, the gathering of computer and network information about what's connected to Steam to better tailor their games to take advantage of them. We know those as the benefits. What were the negatives? That you can't sell the games after you purchase them? Becuase they don't want you to, should be the obvious answer. Whether you agree with that or not, that's up to you and obviously you don't. Reduction of prices? I buy my games for $20 bucks from Steam, which was Red Orchestra. That's a bit cheaper than the $50 for Oblivion. But again, demand drives prices. If they feel they can charge more, they will. If we balk, then they'll lower the prices. If I think something is too expensive, I don't buy it. Simple as that. And yes, I will think other people are idiots if they do. But I'm sure they're crushed to know my opinion of them.

By stating that Valve can disable your entire game catalog at their whim, you are suggesting that they are an evil corporation bent on nefarious deeds. My argument is that they are just like any other company out there. If they piss off too many customers, then they will lose masses of customers. But, it doesn't appear to be happening, hm?

Stardock simply gives their software available to download from a website. I'd hardly call that the same scale as what Steam does. Direct2drive would have been a better analogy, but if you've done any research on that, you'll note that the code is different for Direct2drive games, which then requires a seperate patch from them as well as getting expansion packs from them. So now you are limited to one Vendor for the rest of that game's life. I don't see the evil that other people see in Steam. The problems I've had with it are minor so it hasn't driven me away to not play the games I like to play. We'll just have to disagree on that point.

 
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76. Re: Credit cards Apr 26, 2007, 13:21 nin
 
I was wondering how a single person could forge ahead in such ignorance, posting with such obvious hositility and using antagonistic prose that is designed to get a reaction from whomever you direct it to.


Oh, you are new here, he's been doing that shit for ages now.

-----------------------------------------------------
Listen, now: http://yearzero.nin-thespiral.com/FLJoi4gjw2f/player.html
 
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75. Re: Credit cards Apr 26, 2007, 13:02 Happyclam
 
I did some thinking last night and I think I understand the misconceptions you are suffering from, Riley.

1. You do not own the software, you own a copy of the software. All rights pertaining to the game are reserved by the Publisher/Developer. Pretty standard stuff there. That's why they don't like it when you hack the software, pirate it, etc. It's also why you are supposed to buy multiple copies to use on several PC's.

Your whole argument is based on your percieved invasion of privacy and your dislike of Steam. You claim m00zilla as the holy grail of why Steam is bad, based on a single email from Valve, and yet none from m00zilla. What about Microsoft? They have the same capability, you know, and they are much more invasive than Steam could ever be, as you are running Windows constantly. Remember the whole fiasco with XP about how if you changed the hardware in your system to a certain degree, you had to call them and get Windows reactivated?

2. After some thinking, I was wondering how a single person could forge ahead in such ignorance, posting with such obvious hositility and using antagonistic prose that is designed to get a reaction from whomever you direct it to. Let me tell you the story about a viral marketing technique. It's where a person is paid to antagonize people about a certain issue in order to see where the prevalent general opinion falls. It's not about promoting your view, but simply to piss people off enough to respond with their own opinion. Because, let's face it, you're not doing your cause any good with such posts. As people have stated, you're promoting opinion as fact, with no solid evidence to bear up your views, or a distorted vision of what your rights should be, rather than the reality of what they are. When you feel that your argument isn't winning over someone, you then switch to namecalling and lacing your posts with invectives and antagonistic words.

Also, by cracking the code to bypass Steam's server browser functionality in older software, you are stating that you would intentionally open up your computer to other people skilled enough to do so as well. But oh yeah, they wouldn't do anything bad because they aren't a business.

I don't, but it's a moot point. Fundamentally Valve has poor customer service because it doesn't have telephone contact for it, it doesn't compensate users when they are unable to play their games due to problems with the Steam software or network, it hasn't provided sufficient redundancy in the network to avoid the outages and capacity shortages over the years, it doesn't provide any guarantees of availability especially the long-term availability of games purchased via Steam, and it doesn't provide users with the flexibility to have final control over the use of their own purchases. The individual accounts I have read by aggrieved users who are afflicted by one or more of these many limitations and shortcomings simply demonstrate their existence. Even if the majority of Steam users haven't yet experienced any of these problems doesn't mean they won't at some point because Valve has done nothing substantial to rectify them.

This statement was too funny to pass up. I'm sorry, but this is full of the most ignorant crap I've heard in some time. Compare Steam outtages of the past to Steam outtages of now and tell me no improvements have been made. That's just observation there and opinion. Ok, I can accept that. However, provide me proof they haven't done anything. You're trying to present this as fact, but it is merely your opinion. You even state the majority haven't experienced these issues, which then leads me to believe that perhaps the problem doesn't lie with Steam? I mean, if you have 20 millions users, and 100,000 of them are having problems, do you honestly believe it's Steam causing the problem? But anyway, let's continue in your world. Steam is causing the problem. So why should Valve change their code to accomodate the 100,000 when it could potentially affect the other 19,900,000? It's easier to just tell the 100,000 to get their shit fixed. This is, of course, a very generalized example, but I hope it drives home the point that the minority are /not/ the majority.

This comment was edited on Apr 26, 13:15.
 
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74. Re: Credit cards Apr 26, 2007, 09:23 Riley Pizt
 
Valve cannot, as you appear to be suggesting, modify your install media of old software pre-Steam in order to stop you running a server that these older games can connect to.
Actually Valve doesn't have to modify the older games to prevent Internet play if WON support disappeared because they were already written that way. If you run a version of Half-Life 1 which predates Steam, it will refuse to allow client connections from outside the server's subnet in LAN mode (so no Internet-based clients can join), and it will refuse to function in Internet mode if the master server is unavailable (which it is because Valve has the old master server tell clients that Internet play via it doesn't function).

Unlike many other older games like the Quake and Unreal series, Half-Life won't function in Internet play mode without continued support from its developer because Valve intentionally designed the game that way. Sure it is technically possible though not trivial to hack Half-Life to bypass these restrictions and setup an alternative master server, but then the problem becomes finding other players with identically hacked versions of the game to play against.

The reason why the tens of thousands of holdouts finally migrated to Steam is because Valve did pull the plug on them and disable their previous online play.

This comment was edited on Apr 26, 09:45.
 
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73. Re: Credit cards Apr 26, 2007, 09:12 Netherai
 
Riley, you appear to be arguing that Valve's new versions of their servers should support your old versions of games?

Valve cannot, as you appear to be suggesting, modify your install media of old software pre-Steam in order to stop you running a server that these older games can connect to.

Have I understood you correctly?

 
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72. Re: Credit cards Apr 26, 2007, 09:03 Riley Pizt
 
*yawn* Apparently you also forgot Half Life 2 released at retail also required Steam.
There you go again not considering the text in context to the referring posts which preceded it. I didn't forget. I was referring to how Steam changed the catalog of Valve's games which predate Steam. Happyclam responded to that point, and I was addressing it again. Next time read my post in context to the referring ones.

LOL, you don't keep your original CD's?
Again, seriously learn to read. The operative word here is "online." I cannot play the games which predate Steam ONLINE, i.e. in Internet multiplayer mode.

Apparently the "2" attached to the title Team Fortress didn't come to your attention. You should regain your reading comprehension. The intention of most game sequels is to carry on or build upon the original's gameplay.

Or would it make more sense for Battlefield 2142 to completely dump what made its predecessor so popular?
A game sequel doesn't necessarily and certainly need not duplicate or carry on the original's gameplay. From what I have read, Team Fortress 2 is basically Team Fortress Classic gameplay right down to the same venues (maps), classes/characters, and weapons. Whereas to use your example of Battlefield 2142 versus Battlefield 2, there are much greater differences between the two games, e.g. the vehicles are different, the weapons are different, the maps are different so both games create a different gameplay experience even though similarities exist between the two games.

As compared to what? You conveniently don't provide a similar situation with Valve in which to compare.
One similar situation I am comparing it to is obvious. One poster in the thread at http://www.bluesnews.com/cgi-bin/board.pl?action=viewthread&threadid=77166 can't play any of his Steam games because Valve disabled his account. Can you read and find out who?

But you'll put up with their unfinished, derivative games that almost always need patching right out of the box?
Again learn to read. That is basically what I meant by "That is not to say that I agree with EA on its game release and support policies."

EA is also the 800 pound gorilla of the game industry. They should be able to more than afford decent customer service.
If a small company like Real can afford responsive and available customer service with telephone contacts, then so can Valve. Enough said.

You've read about it, but you've never actually contacted them yourself.
I have not contacted Valve because it would be futile. I want Steam to be made optional to play its games, and it is not about to do that.

So, it still begs the question, how do you know you're not hearing from the most vocal minority?
I don't, but it's a moot point. Fundamentally Valve has poor customer service because it doesn't have telephone contact for it, it doesn't compensate users when they are unable to play their games due to problems with the Steam software or network, it hasn't provided sufficient redundancy in the network to avoid the outages and capacity shortages over the years, it doesn't provide any guarantees of availability especially the long-term availability of games purchased via Steam, and it doesn't provide users with the flexibility to have final control over the use of their own purchases. The individual accounts I have read by aggrieved users who are afflicted by one or more of these many limitations and shortcomings simply demonstrate their existence. Even if the majority of Steam users haven't yet experienced any of these problems doesn't mean they won't at some point because Valve has done nothing substantial to rectify them.

This comment was edited on Apr 26, 09:52.
 
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71. Re: Credit cards Apr 26, 2007, 07:04 Bhruic
 
I see a lot of fear-mongering and paranoia present and let's look at this logically.

Ok, let's.

The only secure way to access the Internet is not to have our computers plugged into the Internet.

Ok, so much for logic. We are going to access the internet by... not being connected to the internet?

If someone is determined to get in, regardless of what the consequences are, they will. It's merely a matter of time.

Relevance? Or are you trying to say that because someone is guarunteed to break into my car eventually, I might as well leave the door open for them?

None of them are fully secure, as has been proven time and time again.

Actually, no such thing has been proven. There are many, MANY servers/sites that have never been broken in to. This may be because people just haven't tried hard enough, or it may be because they have been unable to do so. The fact that some sites have been broken in to does not prove that any/all sites can be.

So if you limit yourself from using online vendors simply because you are scared of your CC# being ripped off, you're only limiting the convenience of your shopping experience.

Again with the "unlocked car" analogy. Not to mention the fact that your examples fail on a common sense level. While yes, any business that I use my CC at has the number, the relative probability of someone stealing the CC from such a business is lower than the probability of someone getting it digitally. In terms of minimizing risk, therefore, it certainly is prudent to take steps to ensure that it can't be stolen in such a fashion. However, as others pointed out in this thread, there are options to do so.

And yes, I have had my CC# stolen and used. Turns out it was a roommate and not some diabolical hacker on the Internet.

Anecdotal evidence FTW? Or are you attempting to suggest that, in general, credit card numbers are stolen more often by roommates than online?

So whether you love it or hate it, it does provide a useful service and isn't going to be going away anytime soon.

You act as if anyone has been arguing that it has no usefulness. That's a strawman - no one has been doing so. At worst, we have people like Riley arguing that the negatives outweigh the positives, but more often we have people arguing that there are significant negatives that should be addressed.

For example, why did they make it a requirement to run the actual games through the Steam client? The "piracy" excuse isn't going to cut it - Steam games are pirated as easy, if not easier, as the rest of the games out there. Why aren't we seeing a reduction in prices that match the physical side of game pricing? Why are we unable to resell the games that we puchased? Why does Valve maintain the ability to disable our entire game catalog at their whim?

What's important to note here, is that the argument is no longer about whether or not online distribution is a good thing. It is. The issue is whether Valve has done a good job of making such a system. I maintain they have not. And I can easily point to a much better example of online distribution - what Stardock has done.

 
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70. Re: Credit cards Apr 26, 2007, 05:14 Masa
 
Steam forces that an entirely different version of the game be run than what is on the release media and it forces updates whether customers want them or not.

*yawn* Apparently you also forgot Half Life 2 released at retail also required Steam.

I don't, but that means that I cannot play any of the games I purchased from Valve which predate Steam online.

LOL, you don't keep your original CD's?


Team Fortress 2 looks like a retread of the same old gameplay and venues of Team Fortress Classic with some new visuals.

Apparently the "2" attached to the title Team Fortress didn't come to your attention. You should regain your reading comprehension. The intention of most game sequels is to carry on or build upon the original's gameplay.

Or would it make more sense for Battlefield 2142 to completely dump what made its predecessor so popular?

That is not to say that I agree with EA on its game release and support policies, but its customer service department and policies have been head and shoulders above those I have read about Valve's.

As compared to what? You conveniently don't provide a similar situation with Valve in which to compare.

I have only had good experiences with its customer service department over the years.

But you'll put up with their unfinished, derivative games that almost always need patching right out of the box?

EA is also the 800 pound gorilla of the game industry. They should be able to more than afford decent customer service.

but its customer service department and policies have been head and shoulders above those I have read about Valve's.

You've read about it, but you've never actually contacted them yourself. Yeah yeah, you don't use Valve's products. So, it still begs the question, how do you know you're not hearing from the most vocal minority?

 
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69. Re: Credit cards Apr 26, 2007, 03:55 Riley Pizt
 
But Microsoft released those features after they recieved a lot of grumbling from their customers, not through any sign of goodwill.
You are dead wrong. Backward compatibility for the newer editions was on the release media. Forward compatibility for the older editions was available shortly after the new version was released. Regardless of the motivations the bottom line is that Microsoft accomodated its customers' wishes. It did NOT disable functionality of its customers' older software as Valve did.

And do you really think so? Well, let's see...what about the multiplayer games that require you to use their service for multiplayer? Like Warcraft/Starcraft? Or GPGnet for Supreme Commander? And then you have games with such crappy multiplayer supports that you wish they had some sort of service like those, like Ghost Recon 2 when it first came out.
I would take those over Steam because in addition to its restrictions and limitations, Steam forces that an entirely different version of the game be run than what is on the release media and it forces updates whether customers want them or not. For example, the current Steam release of Counterstrike 1 contains embedded advertising and tracking. If customers don't want the ads they are shit-out-of-luck because they can't downgrade to a previous version and still play online.

So let me see, you like Half-life and Half-life 2, and yet here you are calling them crap?
I have written nothing in this thread about what I think about the quality of Valve's specific games, and Half-Life 1 & 2 are far from the only things for sale on Steam. However a great deal of what is available on Steam is crap especially crap that didn't sell well when it was released into the retail channel.

Is Red Orchestra crap as well?
I have never played it, but since it requires Steam I never will.

Or The Ship?
Since it requires Steam, I won't play it, but from the descriptions it sounds like some real crap.

How about Team Fortress 2 when it comes out?
Team Fortress 2 looks like a retread of the same old gameplay and venues of Team Fortress Classic with some new visuals. It's too early to definitively declare it crap, but it's not looking too good to me.

Personally, I'm not doing anything to warrant the removal of my ability to play games,
Unfortunately for you that is not enough because you don't make that determination. Valve does. And, in addition you have no express rules to even know what to do or not to do.

If you're so violently opposed to Steam, then don't use it.
I don't, but that means that I cannot play any of the games I purchased from Valve which predate Steam online.

Your arguments here are doing nothing to convince people it's evil
It certainly does make some at least reconsider their opinions on the matter even if they don't admit it or reply.

I've had no major problems with Steam, so I'm not going to hate it simply because someone else has.
Well I don't believe in waiting to be burned myself to realize that fire is hot. The numerous reported outages and unavailability of Steam since its release coupled with its tenuous nature by design and Valve's poor customer service policies and practices have clearly demonstrated to me that I should not waste money on it when it could disappear tomorrow.

Though I will say that EA is on my shitlist.
Despite the fact that so many who frequent this forum complain about EA, I have only had good experiences with its customer service department over the years. Many years ago I got some free replacement media from it by simply calling its customer service department, and once it re-issued a CD key for C&C Renegade to me with minimal hassle and wait. That is not to say that I agree with EA on its game release and support policies, but its customer service department and policies have been head and shoulders above those I have read about Valve's.

This comment was edited on Apr 26, 04:05.
 
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68. Re: Credit cards Apr 26, 2007, 01:06 Happyclam
 
No, I understand your analogy. But Microsoft released those features after they recieved a lot of grumbling from their customers, not through any sign of goodwill. And do you really think so? Well, let's see...what about the multiplayer games that require you to use their service for multiplayer? Like Warcraft/Starcraft? Or GPGnet for Supreme Commander? And then you have games with such crappy multiplayer supports that you wish they had some sort of service like those, like Ghost Recon 2 when it first came out.

Steam is much more than just a heinous means of copyright enforcement. It is also the means by which Valve monitors its customers and sells crap to them. It's a triple threat.

So let me see, you like Half-life and Half-life 2, and yet here you are calling them crap? Is Red Orchestra crap as well? Or The Ship? Well, the ship might be crap, but I enjoy Red Orchestra. How about Team Fortress 2 when it comes out? I don't like the direction they took with it, but I'll check out a demo of it if they have one. I understand your complaint of Valve, and I can see your concern. Personally, I'm not doing anything to warrant the removal of my ability to play games, but I'll cross that bridge when I come to it, if I ever do. There are many other games out there to play that I enjoy, so it's not going to kill me to not play my games anymore. If you're so violently opposed to Steam, then don't use it. Your arguments here are doing nothing to convince people it's evil, as you've already stated I'm a sycophantic idiot. I've had no major problems with Steam, so I'm not going to hate it simply because someone else has. Otherwise, I'd hate every game or game company out there. Though I will say that EA is on my shitlist.

This comment was edited on Apr 26, 01:07.
 
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67. Re: Credit cards Apr 26, 2007, 00:18 Riley Pizt
 
Oh...so when we had Office 95 and Office 98 came out and suddenly we couldn't read the new Office files, which most businesses upgraded, btw, then that doesn't force us to upgrade our Office suite as well?
You fail to see why your analogy is flawed. Regardless of the features and functionality of new software releases existing software should still perform the functions it is designed to peform. So as I cited in my example above, features like spell checking continue to work in the existing versions of Office regardless of what features later versions of Office have. In addition regarding Office, Microsoft released free converters for the older versions of office like Office 95 to read the later version's files and later versions of Office can still open up and save files in the older versions' formats. So you analogy is flawed on two fronts both generally and specifically.

If you're hating Steam for that, then you might as well hate every company that's out there.
The problem with Steam with regards to the existing games is that Valve disabled the multiplayer functionality that was already present in games which predate Steam. So, customers were forced to upgrade to continue playing the same games they had already purchased in some cases years ago. No other company I can think of has done that. I can still play all of the many other games I have purchased from other companies without being forced to upgrade anything.

And disabling a feature in Word is very different than what we are discussing.
You brought up Word not me, but my analogy of it is much more apt.

Another situation you might enjoy is the whole Xbox live Microsoft vs. Developer scandal, where developers are trying to release content for free and Microsoft is blocking the move and making them charge for the content they post on Xbox Live.
The fact that Valve is not alone in its exploitation and mistreatment of customers is of no comfort to its customers.

And Steam is merely a method of DRM
Steam is much more than just a heinous means of copyright enforcement. It is also the means by which Valve monitors its customers and sells crap to them. It's a triple threat.

you can thank the little script kiddies and such out there who want the free ride for these little gems.
Steam has NOT eliminated or even lessened the unauthorized use and distribution of Valve's games. There are ample means to play Valve games without compensating it. Only legitimate customers like mOOzilla are affected by the Steam outages and account terminations.

Steam, on the other hand, is simply a running application in the background as I play my games.
It is so long as Valve lets you play your games. The biggest problem with Steam is that Valve NOT you ultimately controls if you can play the game you thought you bought.

This comment was edited on Apr 26, 09:28.
 
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