Why have Steam hidden everyone's games from view by default? 3 replies

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FileTrekker Über Admin

I'm spending a year dead for tax reasons.

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#1 7 months ago

So it turns out that Valve have made it so people can't see your game library by default. There's a new option now to turn it on so others can see.

This has caused certain Steam tracking sites to have to close their doors.

Anyone know what the deal is? GDPR? It seems odd given that it still has other personal info visible by default?


Danny King | Community Manager | GameFront.com



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The Dane

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#2 7 months ago

It has to do with GDPR, yes. Given that this is Valve, you can expect them to roll it out gradually. Eventually personal info will be hidden by default as well, I assume.




Lindale Forum Mod

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#3 7 months ago

I had a think about this when I was at work today. The only logical conclusion I can think of is that Valve intentionally did this to shut down those tracker sites.


Say you play Counterstrike, or whatever clan-based shooter game is popular these days. On the clan forum, your forum signature displays your Steam name, your clan, your kill/death ratio number, the leaderboard rank number for your kill/death ratio, that sort of stuff.


As mundane as something like stat trackers may be, it still tracks you.


The other factor is how most (if not all) online mulitplayer games have something in the Terms Of Use saying something along the lines of you not being allowed to use or make add-ons. To do so in technically considered hacking. Even if all you do is track stats, a hack tool is still a hack tool.


Even something as seemingly mundane as a stat tracker could still trigger the Valve Anti-Cheat monitor, giving you a permanent Steam-wide ban from anything multiplayer, and Valve would be fully-justified in doing that.


The ability to not let anyone see your game library by default may deliberately have been a clever method to completely disable tracking. If so, then problem solved.


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Last edited by Lindale 7 months ago

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#4 7 months ago
Posted by Lindale

I had a think about this when I was at work today. The only logical conclusion I can think of is that Valve intentionally did this to shut down those tracker sites.


Say you play Counterstrike, or whatever clan-based shooter game is popular these days. On the clan forum, your forum signature displays your Steam name, your clan, your kill/death ratio number, the leaderboard rank number for your kill/death ratio, that sort of stuff.


As mundane as something like stat trackers may be, it still tracks you.


The other factor is how most (if not all) online mulitplayer games have something in the Terms Of Use saying something along the lines of you not being allowed to use or make add-ons. To do so in technically considered hacking. Even if all you do is track stats, a hack tool is still a hack tool.


Even something as seemingly mundane as a stat tracker could still trigger the Valve Anti-Cheat monitor, giving you a permanent Steam-wide ban from anything multiplayer, and Valve would be fully-justified in doing that.


The ability to not let anyone see your game library by default may deliberately have been a clever method to completely disable tracking. If so, then problem solved.

Nope. It's related to the EU General Data Protection Regulation. It comes into force on May 25 this year. Anyone found non-compliant will face a heavy fine, so websites, services, and applications are rushing to make sure they're complying with the regulations.


One of the major changes to the new regulation is that the old one was ambiguous and in some cases didn't apply properly. Now the regulation applies even to companies that are based outside the Union. So it doesn't matter if all your assets are located in Dubai or Seattle or Moscow; if you're operating in the European Union, you're subject to the regulations.


It also calls for data minimisation, meaning that you're only allowed to process the data that's absolutely necessary. So Facebook can't read what apps you have available on your phone unless it has a very good reason to do so. And you must give consent for your data to be obtained or shared.


Essentially, the entire regulation protects the consumer from being captured in a net of legalese bullshit and semantics. It does put an extra strain on the companies, but they can afford it.