Steam (Valve Corp) has decided to stop accepting Bitcoin as a form of payment.
Steam is one of the largest (if not the largest) gaming distribution companies on the Internet today. Although Valve is more known for the non-existence of Half-Life 3, Steam has been a very reputable middle man between game development companies and gamers since 2003. Aside from being just a place for people to buy games, they’ve always been an extremely innovative company by doing things such as; developing new hardware like the Steam Link, Steam VR, custom Steam PC builds, and their gaming targeted Linux platform called Steam OS. Aside from innovation in the gaming industry, they were also one of the first large companies accepting Bitcoin as a form of payment.
Their adoption of Bitcoin came at a time when Bitcoin was a little less complex…. and not nearly as volatile, making it a reasonable form of payment for their users. Internet games, being paid for by Internet money was something that accommodated a lot of people – and something that made a lot of sense given their industry.
But today is a sad day for Bitcoin using Steam Gamers; as Steam announced on their blog that they’re no longer supporting Bitcoin as a method of payment due to it’s volatility, and high transaction fees.
As of today, Steam will no longer support Bitcoin as a payment method on our platform due to high fees and volatility in the value of Bitcoin.
Although this may make many people very unhappy; it’s a shock to see that a currency intended to make life easier, and transactions smoother has actually done the opposite for some large companies and their consumers. In their blog post, Steam states that the Bitcoin transaction fees have increased so much over this year that it’s causing more harm than good. They seem to be dropping Bitcoin because it has become more of a hassle than a convenience. Is this just the beginning of another currency disrupting the market by causing more damage than good, or is it just a kink in the training wheels?
“transaction fees that are charged to the customer by the Bitcoin network have skyrocketed this year, topping out at close to $20 a transaction last week (compared to roughly $0.20 when we initially enabled Bitcoin). Unfortunately, Valve has no control over the amount of the fee. These fees result in unreasonably high costs for purchasing games when paying with Bitcoin. The high transaction fees cause even greater problems when the value of Bitcoin itself drops dramatically.” – Source: Steam Blog
We’re in an interesting time, that’s for sure! As bitcoin Futures will be made available to trade on Futures Market as of Monday, and many see this as a great opportunity to short it and scream chaos, there’s still the chance that the value of Bitcoin can go to the moon in the near future and we’ll be asked to pay 0.0000000000000000012 BTC for our groceries.