The Counter Strike Global Offensive is one of the most popular games in the world. One of the causes for its popularity is the gambling market and this marketplace is increasing at a regular pace.
This market is annoying many fans and one such annoyed fan cased a suit against valve telling that they are supporting for this gambling market.
Here is what the suit says:
“knowingly allowed … and has been complicit in creating, sustaining and facilitating [a] market” where players and third-parties trade weapon skins like casino chips.
“knowingly allowed, supported, and/or sponsored illegal gambling by allowing millions of Americans to link their individual Steam accounts to third- party websites.” Through those websites, the suit says, skins for CS:GO, which can be purchased from Valve, “can … easily be traded and used as collateral for bets.”
“In the eSports gambling economy, skins are like casino chips that have monetary value outside the game itself because of the ability to convert them directly into cash,”.
The lawsuit also states that Valve is making profit from this betting market.
The suit notes that some third-party CS:GO websites don’t require age verification, “which allows minor users to place illegal bets.” In his suit, McLeod cites a report from Bloomberg about teenagers gambling on Counter-Strike skins, reportedly part of a $2 billion business.
“People buy skins for cash, then use the skins to place online bets on pro CS:GO matches,” Bloomberg reported earlier this year. “Because there’s a liquid market to convert each gun or knife back into cash, laying a bet in skins is essentially the same as betting with real money.”
The suit is seeking class action status.
“In sum, Valve owns the league, sells the casino chips, and receives a piece of the casino’s income stream through foreign websites in order to maintain the charade that Valve is not promoting and profiting from online gambling, like a modern-day Captain Renault from Casablanca,” the suit alleges. “That most of the people in the CS:GO gambling economy are teenagers and under 21 makes Valve’s and the other Defendants’ actions even more unconscionable.”
Participants can get skins in CS: GO through timed drops, by opening dropped weapon cases with a proper key or by trading with other players through Steam’s built-in trading interface. Participants can buy and sell those skins through the Steam Marketplace. Other Valve games, like Team Fortress 2, feature items and weapons of varying rarity that players can sell and barter.
Due to these trading features a new black market has risen and this marketplace is offering a deep dent in this game. Now we have to see how Valve answers this suit.
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