Steam users are now required to show if they receive payment to endorse products through the Steam Curators List or the Steam Broadcasting service, according to an update to Steam’s subscriber agreement.
The new agreement:
“If you use Steam services to promote or endorse a product, service or event in return for any kind of consideration from a third-party, you must clearly indicate the source of such consideration to your audience.”
Valve launched its Curator system last year, allowing Steam users to follow curators who recommend and review titles on the service. Curators get shown on the Steam home page and individual product pages, which is where Valve suggests users look to find curators that match their tastes.
In order to become a curator, a user needs to either start a new Steam Community group or be an officer/moderator of a group. Once that’s done, users will need to make at least 10 recommendations on Steam. Curators can link to websites, YouTube videos, podcasts and tweets to flesh out their recommendations, and Valve says anyone can take part — whether it’s a developer, journalist, artist, or critic. Top curators get highlighted based on how many Steam followers they have, but that may change over time.
Problems have arisen recently due to a lack of public disclosure on the digital platform. Earlier this year, Valve asked developers listed on Steam Greenlight to stop trading game keys for votes, because it puts them “in a really uncomfortable position.”
Valve, in a message at the time:
“We do not think these votes accurately reflect customer interest, and it makes our job harder in deciding which games customers would actually buy and play on Steam.”