Multiple ISPs Across India Blocks Steam, Imminent Ban Looms

Multiple ISPs Across India Blocks Steam, Imminent Ban Looms

Multiple internet service providers (ISPs) across India have reportedly blocked partial or complete access to Steam, the popular digital distribution platform. Initially, it was believed that the ban was limited to Alliance Broadband Pvt. Ltd. in West Bengal, as they cited a government order as the reason for blocking Steam pages. However, the situation has since escalated, with an increasing number of ISPs joining the ban. This raises concerns that a nationwide ban of Valve’s services in India may be imminent.

Multiple ISPs Block Access to Steam Services

Reports have surfaced indicating that Steam’s services are being progressively blocked by ISPs in India. Following West Bengal’s Alliance Broadband Pvt. Ltd., the ban has now extended to other regions, hinting at a possible nationwide ban. The issue was first highlighted on 20th June by a Twitter user, reporting the inaccessibility of Steam Community pages. With an increasing number of ISPs joining the blockade, concerns are mounting within the gaming community regarding the future availability of Steam’s services in India.

Notably, some ISPs have partially limited access to specific Steam features, others have implemented a complete ban. Social media reports suggest that more service providers might have blocked Steam, but these instances have not widely spread online yet.

Following are the ISPs that have blocked the access partially or completely to Steam:

  • Channel 3 Cable Internet (Maharashtra) 
  • GTPL (Gujarat) 
  • Alliance (West Bengal) – Currently Unblocked
  • BSNL (Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh) 
  • TATA Fiber (Maharashtra) 

Why is Steam Blocked in India

Curiously, ISPs have failed to provide a clear explanation for the restrictions, leaving users and industry experts puzzled. Journalist Rishi Alwani noted the absence of any public information regarding a government order or directive associated with the ban. However, a statement from Union Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar earlier in June hinted at upcoming bans on certain types of games.

The government’s plans reportedly target games involving betting, those deemed harmful to users, and games with addictive elements. This raises the possibility that Steam has become a casualty of the government’s wider crackdown on these particular game categories.

The implications of a potential ban on Steam in India are far-reaching. Steam users across the country are growing increasingly frustrated as they face difficulties accessing the platform’s vibrant community features. Above all, if the government enforces nationwide ban, it would result in users losing access to their games, wallet balances, and in-game items, causing substantial inconvenience and financial loss. The absence of official communication from the government on the matter only increases the uncertainty and concern among Indian gamers, who have built extensive libraries and communities within the Steam ecosystem.

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As ISPs in India continue to block access to Steam, the possibility of a nationwide ban looms over Steam. The lack of transparency from both ISPs and the government for restrictions fuels speculation about the motives behind the move.