Valve's Gabe Newell thinks the current form of Steam is becoming a bottleneck between consumers and content creators. Newell says Valve needs to get out of that connection as much as possible, and thinks Steam would be better a a network API. Newell characterizes Steam's current form as a "curated store," but he thinks it would be better as a network API. Video after the break.
"Essentially anybody should be able to publish anything through Steam," he says. Individuals and companies should be able to create their own stores that plug into the Steam backend, and the market will decide which of those venues succeeds. Video of Newell's full talk is embedded below.
Although Newell doesn't lay out a specific plan or timeline for transforming Steam from a Valve-run store into an accessible API, it sounds like that's the direction the company is heading. Interesting. I'm not sure how a patchwork of Steam-based stores would actually work out—or how much of Steam's community functionality might be built into an API—but I'm curious to see what would happen if Valve democratized distribution in that way. As Newell points out earlier in the talk, "I do my job, but if I get Reddit to do my job, they'll do it a lot better. The relevant discussion starts around the 44-minute mark with the tech report.
Gabe Newell - Piracy Isn't About Price - 11/28/2011 01:03 PM
Valve CEO Gabe Newell explains to IGN why piracy is a result of bad service rather than high price, and how Valve expanded Steam into Russia without rampant piracy resulting and grew it into their big...