Here's Why Valve Won't Put Ads on Steam

"We wouldn't do it."


Valve has no plans to introduce advertisements for commercial products to the Steam PC storefront. Valve's Erik Johnson tells GameSpot in a recent interview that, although Valve could make some short-term money from selling ad space, such an endeavor would ultimately have negative effects on the platform.

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"We don't see a case for that ever getting user value," he said when asked if a product like Doritos might ever be advertised on Steam. "So we wouldn't do it. I don't think that those ever work, either. To take it a step further, I don't think anybody buys Doritos as a result of that."

Instead, Johnson said, "We tend to focus on long-term relationships." He added that advertisement programs of this nature actually cost money and create negative value in the eyes of the consumer. "It would be a bad business decision, let alone just dumb."

Advertisements on digital games marketplaces aren't new, however, as they already exist on Xbox and PlayStation platforms. But Valve's Robin Walker added: "Ads don't serve any value to costumers."

Walker explained that Valve's challenge right now is to create new tools and functionality to help its 125 million users find games they're interested in. In September 2014, Valve released the "Steam Discovery Update" with the aim of helping users filter through the flood of new releases. Walker said Valve continues to work on new algorithms and processes to make this even better. This is an important issue to solve, as Steam has a library of more than 6,000 games.

GameSpot recently visited Steam's HQ and tried out the new Steam Controller, which goes on sale in November alongside the Steam Link and numerous Steam Machines. For lots more on the controller specifically, watch our full impressions of the Steam controller in the video above.

What do you make of Valve's stance on Steam ads? Let us know in the comments below.

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