Eat Fresh... Hot Lead, That Is

Interesting stuff from Consumerist, via Ars Technica: An advertising company for Subway (as in the restaurant) created a "mod" (as in modification) to put advertisements inside the online game Counter-Strike (the official site for which, by the way, has a Wendy's advert on the top). The twist is that the mod was meant for only specific servers (centralized hubs that host games for the players), which are not controlled or owned by Valve, the game's creators. In other words, the revenue goes to the hosts, not to Valve.

I agree with Consumerist here (except for the part about EULA restrictions... not sure what the basis for that is, but then again, I haven't read the EULA in a while...):

But ignoring the EULA restrictions, we think it's sort of brilliant. By dint of overwhelming success, Valve has created an alternate media channel all of its own—one filled with the coveted 'young male' demographic. But since Valve chooses to offload the cost of hosting games of Counter-Strike to fans instead of hosting all the servers on their own, they've made it technically impossible to prevent others from piggy-backing on their success.

In fact, since the Counter-Strike server operators have to pay all their own bandwidth fees to operate servers that generate money for Valve by way of more games sold, we think the Subway ad campaign is a pretty healthy way for server operators to recoup some of their hearty expenses. (Again, EULA violations aside.)

That's right - more hosts means more space for players? Why fight a win-win situation, Valve? Are the crumbs worth that much to you?


p.s. "Eat Fresh" is the Subway motto, for those who don't watch too much television.


Mihai said...

Something tells me that Valve isn't "enlightened" enough to see the big picture here. They will probably get mighty pissed and sic their attack dogs... umm lawyers... on them. But I guess we'll wait and see.

So, am I the first to leave a comment OR WHAT?

YodaYid said...

You're the first commenter on BlogSpot, yup :-)

I would have thought that Valve would be relatively enlightened, judging from the quality of their products, but I guess that's no indication...