VALVE SURVIVES CLASS ACTION ON SKIN GAMBLING (Update)
But the intention of the Washington State Gambling Commission remains unclear.
The eSports furore earlier this year over gambling with skins obtained from Valves Steam site and wagered online through third party sites culminated in a class action against Valve which has been dismissed by a federal judge in the Western District of Washington.
However, the position of the Washington State Gambling Commission remains unclear; just a day after the federal court decision, the Commission sent a cease and desist letter to Valve threatening civil or criminal charges for its alleged part in the skins gambling enterprise and insisting that Valve stops "facilitating gambling through its Steam Platform."
“In Washington, and everywhere else in the United States, skins betting on eSports remains a large, unregulated black market for gambling," said Washington State Gambling Commissioner Chris Stearns.
*That carries great risk for the players who remain wholly unprotected in an unregulated environment. We are also required to pay attention to and investigate the risk of underage gambling which is especially heightened in the eSports world. It is our sincere hope that Valve will not only comply but also take proactive steps to work with the Commission on future measures that will benefit the public and protect consumers.”
Valve responded vigorously, rebutting the allegation, explaining that it had no business relationship with operators of skin gambling sites, and suggesting that the Commission cite specific criminal statutes or regulations that it may believe Valve has violated.
The company also provided proof of its own cease and desist letters sent to third party site owners earlier this year.
Apparently the Commission has not responded, leaving the other shoe to drop following the class action failure.