The gradual move from physical media to digital downloads has taken its toll on one section of the video games business — the second hand market. The idea of selling back a digital copy of a game may seem as strange as the idea of selling an MP3 you no longer listen to, but it could be something that Microsoft is considering.
In a survey apparently being shown to Xbox gamers, Microsoft asks whether they would be interested in the idea of selling back their digital purchases. Presented in the way it is — it’s suggested that games could be bought back for 10 percent of their original price — it may not seem like a great deal, but it’s interesting to see that Microsoft is thinking about testing the water in this area.
GameSpot reports that details of the survey popped up on Reddit, and ferocious debate has started around whether the suggested price is too low. At the moment, digital downloads have no resale value whatsoever, so it could be argued that anything is better than nothing, but a forum thread on Neogaf shows lots of gamers responding with a loud “hell, no!”.
The survey poses the question:
If the console digital games store for the console you owned offered customers the option to “sell back” their digital games to the store for 10 percent of the purchase price in store credit, would you be interested in such an offer?
If Microsoft did proceed with this idea, it would be a ground breaking move, and would open up the possibility of other digital buy-back schemes. There is, of course, the problem of ensuring that those who opt to sell their digital downloads do not find a way to reactivate their original software license and continue using the game for free.
How dos the idea grab you? Does 10 percent seem a little stingy? Would the idea of store credit rather than cold, hard cash make a buy-back scheme less appealing?
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