Well if you buy a Stardock game on Steam, you're fine as long as either Stardock OR Steam are around.
Of course, if Stardock were ever to fold (not bloody likely) we'd just put our stuff out into the public domain.
I want to believe that Brad, and it really means a lot to hear that from stardock's ceo in person. One of the reasons I trust stardock more then steam.
But a lot of companies made that claim and didn't follow it through. And aren't there legal obstacles? Your company's creditors (the hypothetical ones if the company hits hard times, I imagine you don't have creditors when flush with cash) have rights and that includes a right to have you auction off all of the company's assets to recover the money they are owed. Unless I am mistaken, wouldn't putting it into public domain when going under be considered a theft of their property?
And you did sell impulse to Gamestop! understandable due to the financial hardship at the time; you did what you had to do. But I wouldn't trust gamestop as far as I could throw them and I had bought a lot of games from impulse based on that trust in your word specifically brad. That and the fact that unlike steam impulse allowed you to backup your games to zips and reinstall from those WITHOUT an online DRM verification, an assurance against the servers ever going down. I don't believe gamestop can be trusted to respect your policy and word.
And do you intend to do this forever? what about when you pass on (everyone dies eventually; hopefully not anytime soon though)? Whomever ends up with ownership of the company then can sell it to whomever they want, even EA.
If your account is banned you lose all "your" games. Also Steam may be sold (hypotetically) like Impulse to another company.
IRL example that happened: EA bans users from forums over DRM argument. Customer loses all their games.
IRL example that happened: Impulse was sold off to GameStop.
You do realise if your house was damaged by fire, flood or another natural disaster and you lost all your cd's you would be screwed, however if they were on Steam you'd be ok? Which would you say is the more likely thing to happen to to the countless people on Steam in the next 10 years?
Why does everyone assume I buy CDs when I blast steam's DRM? I get low/no DRM from some of steam competitors, when there is no choice I either don't buy the game at all (onerous DRM) or buy it with the DRM in downloadable format... sometimes even from steam itself (I have a decent sized library). This is because the DRM on CDs is far far worse then that on DRMed games. Buying a CD means buying both a product AND a license with the drawbacks of both and the benefits of neither, combined with worse DRM then steam.
And to answer your question, statistically speaking, steam shutting down is more likely per person. If (hypothetical number) 0.01% of steam customers will lose their house in a fire or a flood per 10 years. If steam shuts down 100% of their customer's lose their data. That means that for those two to merely equal each other, steam shutting down has to be 1/10,000 th the likelihood of a fire.
Microsoft shuts down DRM servers http://news.cnet.com/8301-10784_3-9926476-7.html
Yehoo shuts down DRM servers https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20080724/0341381775.shtml
Walmart shuts down DRM servers https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20080929/0004132388.shtml
heck, even bioware (post EA acquisition) shut down their older games' servers.
Of course in reality there is always the ILLEGAL option of pirating a product you purchase that was was lost (be it fire or DRM Server termination) due to being impossible to backup due to DRM. As hilariously explained in http://xkcd.com/488/
Note the line at the bottom, they are not advocating piracy they are advocating that customer demand DRM free products.