PUBG Is Shutting Down Personal Item Trades, For The Moment
The news was posted on the Steam news page , where it was announced that the personal item trades would be turned off… temporarily.
The post explains that originally the trading system was set up so that players could use the market trade or personal trade features when exchanging or trading items with other players. The market trading feature was designed so that players could put their items up for sale through the Steam market system, whereas the personal trading system was designed so that players could exchange goods between each other without having to spend any money.
However, PUBG Corporation found out that the personal trading mechanism was being used to sell and trade PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds items that were facilitated through third-party gray market resellers.
This kind of thing happens often with popular games that allow for trading items between players. World of Warcraft has gone through the hardships of dealing with gold sellers and third-party items sellers, while Everquest became notorious for account boosters, where paid groups would power-level your account or sell you high-level characters. Diablo III was on the receiving end of all manner of nefarious actions by various gray and black market groups who attempted to leverage the Real-Money Auction House in order to make real life money on selling in-game items through the RMAH.
It’s a dangerous precedent to allow to happen for a game, especially when a company is trying to avoid any kind of government oversight and lawsuits.
Some companies have ignored community feedback, and have maintained certain features that have become renown for groups to exploit them, such as the loot boxes in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive , which gave rise to various gambling outlets and resulted in gambling commissions stepping in to have the gambling outlets shut down.
It’s actually interesting to note that, in this case, PUBG Corporation is actually being proactive in curbing the use of trades that are disruptive to their terms of service.
Not everyone is happy about the limited trade feature and the removal of personal trades until PUBG can implement a fix. Some people enjoyed being able to buy collector’s items through third-party outlets. On the upside, at least the issue with cheaters in PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds and the complaints about lag have been partially subdued for now. There’s no ETA on when the personal trading feature will come back, but the marketplace trading is still available.