The European Court of Justice ruled today that individuals are legally allowed to resell digitally downloaded games as they would if they had the physical copies.
In the decision
, the Court stated that,
"Where the copyright holder makes available to his customer a copy – tangible or intangible – and at the same time concludes, in return form payment of a fee, a licence agreement granting the customer the right to use that copy for an unlimited period, that rightholder sells the copy to the customer and thus exhausts his exclusive distribution right. Such a transaction involves a transfer of the right of ownership of the copy. Therefore, even if the licence agreement prohibits a further transfer, the rightholder can no longer oppose the resale of that copy."
In essence, this would mean that game owners are allowed to resell activation codes for digital items that they had purchased over the internet. However, whoever had sold the software or game must delete all copies that they have on all their computers. How this will affect the relationship between developer and consumer remains to be seen, and if it will even affect gamers State Side.
More on this from Forbes
and The Wall Street Journal