EU Commission proposal wants two-year guarantee for games

Pretty interesting read:

European game developers are up in arms about a recent EU Commission proposal that, if approved, would require devs to abide by the EU Sales and Guarantees Directive, a rule that mandates "a minimum 2-year guarantee on tangible movable consumer goods." While this guarantee sounds great for consumers, Dr. Richard Wilson, head of game developer advocacy group Tiga, is worried it may "stifle new ideas as [fusion_builder_container hundred_percent="yes" overflow="visible"][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type="1_1" background_position="left top" background_color="" border_size="" border_color="" border_style="solid" spacing="yes" background_image="" background_repeat="no-repeat" padding="" margin_top="0px" margin_bottom="0px" class="" id="" animation_type="" animation_speed="0.3" animation_direction="left" hide_on_mobile="no" center_content="no" min_height="none"][developers] could end up just playing it safe."

Developers' qualms go deeper than that, however -- they're worried that consumers might abuse a two-year guarantee on video games by returning the game with a complaint about a bug or glitch that doesn't actually exist. Furthermore, Business Software Alliance director Francisco Mingorance argues digital content isn't tangible, and shouldn't follow the "same liability rules as toasters." He also pointed out digital content isn't technically sold to consumers -- it is licensed for private use.

Joystiq's Law of the Game writer (and radical lawyer) Mark Methenitis threw in his two cents, explaining that patches and updates have ended the age of game-ruining glitches, and that a potentially exploitable two-year guarantee on games is unnecessary. He adds, "if you're unsatisfied with an ongoing pattern of bugs you encounter from a developer's product, you should probably consider whether you want to continue purchasing that developer's products, thereby letting the market correct the problem."

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This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. tmihai20

    It is not a bad idea, but the way it will be applied could mean disaster for developers and consumers. Instead of enforcing that players pay the same prices or at least similar prices for the same product, they come up with this idea. There are some games that had a lot of bugs and were not fixed very fast. I don’t agree with “you should probably consider whether you want to continue purchasing that developer’s products, thereby letting the market correct the problem”, a developer may have a very good game and a bad one afterward, so the quality may differ. Also 2 years is a long time…

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  2. Black_Hand

    might sound like a good idea, but seriously it isnt. this would ruin most developers. im a programmer so i think i know all too well what im talking about. that Methenitis guyz threw in one of the most important arguments. but there are others too. finding bugs might get pretty nasty, especially since sometimes you just cant replicate them. you cant fix what you cant replicate. and replicating with those myriads of configurations both hardware and software (as all the applications, libraries and such), is quite daunting task. even with same hardware.

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