Assume for the sake of argument that piracy/theft is wrong.

The are video game sites that, rather than stores that get their products directly from a publisher (e.g. Steam or the Humble Store), buy games from countries where games are priced cheaper. They can then undercut other retailers by reselling the digital key online. It also happens with physical products, but it's easy with games as they can be sold digitally.

Publishers don't like this because it allegedly eats in to their profits, though it usually isn't illegal (hence grey rather than black market).. Regional pricing is done to strike a balance between the risk of piracy, sales and the game budget. However, because these sites don't operate through standard means, some have been associated with stolen goods. 

Basically, if you buy from these sites then the publisher isn't necessarily getting no money, but they're not getting what they 'should'. Question Who's Online | Find Members | Private Messages
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11,106 hits 2.5 (2 votes) Share Favorite | Flag 6 years ago by Floor Demon

Is it wrong to buy things (e.g. video games) on the grey market?
Assume for the sake of argument that piracy/theft is wrong.

The are video game sites that, rather than stores that get their products directly from a publisher (e.g. Steam or the Humble Store), buy games from countries where games are priced cheaper. They can then undercut other retailers by reselling the digital key online. It also happens with physical products, but it`s easy with games as they can be sold digitally.

Publishers don`t like this because it allegedly eats in to their profits, though it usually isn`t illegal (hence grey rather than black market).. Regional pricing is done to strike a balance between the risk of piracy, sales and the game budget. However, because these sites don`t operate through standard means, some have been associated with stolen goods.

Basically, if you buy from these sites then the publisher isn`t necessarily getting no money, but they`re not getting what they `should`.


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6 yrs ago, 1 mos ago - Tuesday 4/5/16 - 6:04:07 AM EST (GMT-5)
Yes, this is wrong as buying games in gray market will not bring a benefit to the companies that developed the games, so the business will degrade step by step
6 yrs ago, 1 mos ago - Thursday 4/7/16 - 7:10:11 AM EST (GMT-5)
On Tuesday 4/5/16 - 6:04:07 AM Sweettybitte wrote:
Yes, this is wrong as buying games in gray market will not bring a benefit to the companies that developed the games, so the business will degrade step by step

No - it doesn't "not bring a benefit", they still get paid!

Perhaps they get paid less than if you bought it in a more expensive way - or perhaps the middleman pockets the difference anyway. If they're happy to sell their game for $10 in the US but demand £10 in the UK, why shouldn't I buy the US copy? Why should I have to pay extra just for living in a country they think they can squeeze harder?
5 yrs ago, 2 mos ago - Thursday 3/9/17 - 11:37:50 AM EST (GMT-5)
I would say that give the game developers what they're due.
5 yrs ago, 2 mos ago - Saturday 3/11/17 - 3:06:09 PM EST (GMT-5)
my brother-in-law told me about some exploit where he used a different currency to buy steam games, because it came out cheaper in US dollars. they should probably close that loophole.

probably not unethical though, given exchange rates aren't dependent on some ethical framework, just market conditions.
4 yrs ago, 9 mos ago - Tuesday 7/18/17 - 1:20:50 AM EST (GMT-5)
legally yes, morally no



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