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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2008

    Lightbulb I Want to Rent My Games

    My question involves business law in the state of: I want to start a website that allows people (members) to rent out their own video games. Is there any laws that will prevent me from starting this website?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Southeastern Michigan

    Default Re: I Want to Rent My Games

    You might want to start by reading the copyright and licensing agreement of the video games you wish to 'share' for profit. Chances are excellent that you would be in direct violation of the agreement, especially if it was for profit!

    Licensing and copyright agreements are extremely complex and vary by state and country. Best advice is that, before you proceed, you contact an attorney who specializes in contract and intellectual property law.

    I honestly don't see your venture (legally) taking off.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2007

    Default Re: I Want to Rent My Games

    Most EULAs require the game and accompanying software, hardware, and keys to be transferred in full to the new owning party. This is why you see games for sale in stores. Some stores "rent" them by having a liberal return policy. Some stores "rent" them by having licensing agreements with the game stuidos. Some online ventures, such as Steam, rent them or sell them and collect the royalties sharing the royalties with the game studio. It's easier to do the rental with console games vice PC games and easier to do the sales/return for 25-50% of value for the PC games. ...and it is really easy to have someone like Steam handle the game streaming. I have seen a few successful gaming shops run on steam and a hourly rental appliction. This is likely not what you intend. I am not sure if the Steam technology or idea (intellectual capital) is patented or not. If it is then you have to come up with a model that does not infringe upon their patents.

    Who handles the dispute when a PC game key is used by two people, one who made a copy of the CD? That could be a real headache for you when it comes to credit card chargebacks and disputes.

    I don't want to discourage you; innovation is a great thing and you could do well. But you really want to think this out and evaluate all possibilities. What I listed are just a few.

    Good luck!

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