Valve: “Pirates are under-served customers”

By Patrick Garratt, Sunday, 18 January 2009 21:18 GMT

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The game pirate is not a thief, Valve’s Jason Holtman told the Game Business Law summit at SMU’s law school today: he’s just eager to keep up with the Joneses.

“There’s a big business feeling that there’s piracy,” said the developer, adding that the truth is, “Pirates are under-served customers.”

Publishers are missing a trick by trying to combat piracy with traditional methods, said Holtman.

“When you think about it that way, you think, ‘Oh my gosh, I can do some interesting things and make some interesting money off of it.’

“We take all of our games day-and-date to Russia,” he added “The reason people pirated things in Russia is because Russians are reading magazines and watching television – they say ‘Man, I want to play that game so bad,’ but the publishers respond, ‘You can play that game in six months… maybe.’

“We found that our piracy rates dropped off significantly.”

There’s more on GameDaily.

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