Blogger Denied Refund for Game EA Won't Let Him Play

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I never got why it was legal for places to just say "Sorry, we don't do refunds."
Are there not consumer laws about this?

D_987:

Andy Chalk:
There's no question that EA is within its rights to set age limits for T and M-rated games but if it's going to do that it should make the situation clear up front, before points are spent or, failing that, it needs to make things right by coming across with a refund.

See post 7 - the article is highly inaccurate; as on both accounts EA do state, in the item description, that the player must be 13+, and that no refund is possible.

aashell13:
and of course no refund for a product you can't use. sounds like par for the course for EA.

Do explain how EA are meant to work out if the player has deleted the game from his hard-drive when they offer a refund? This isn't Steam on which games can be removed from your account.

this is a game that can only be played online with an EA online account, correct? so it seems that deleting it off the local hard disk is irrelevant. besides, that's what customer support is (supposed to be) for, taking individual cases and deciding if an exception to policy is merited.

D_987:

Baresark:
Though it's morally reprehensible, and I would love to sit here and think of ways that these other two fellas are wrong, the guy should have paid more attention. Microsoft and EA are both guilty of being terrible to their customers, exploiting customers, and overall lousy business practices (We all know how bad EA is). I wish to hell the guy paid more attention.

This is the only important bit; we can have all the arguments over morals and so forth, but at the end of the day the person in question didn't pay attention - and legally lost their money as a result. The system should be fixed, but I don't agree by any means that it's entirely the big companies fault here.

The thing is, he didn't legally lose his money, it's still theft. In the automotive industry, it's illegal to sell someone a car that doesn't work when you tell them it does work. No one said he wouldn't be able to play the game. It said you needed to be at least 13 to have an EA account. And it doesn't say he won't be able to register as a 13 year old for an EA account. And it doesn't actually say he won't be able to play the game without one. And I come back to my original point, why was he allowed to purchase the game on the account of a 9 year old? It's dirty business to sell things to people who aren't allowed to use them. You can't legally buy a gun when your a felon, but you don't buy a gun legally and then get arrested for illegally owning a gun. The system they have in place is the actual culprit. It could have been avoided, yes. But the broken system is what is trying to make the companies theft ok. It's illegal to jaywalk, but if you're jaywalking and get hit by a drunk driver, everyone agrees that it's the drunk drivers fault, and not the guy who was jaywalking. There is a level of personal responsibility, but that only goes so far, and it certainly doesn't cover what the company is doing.

This is why you read the fine print? I'm not buying that it wasn't written anywhere that the game was age restricted before he bought it. It might not have been touted on the bullet points, but it was there in the documentation.

If someone could do the due diligence on it while I remain lazy, that'd be nice.

Ultra Man30:
Everything should just go back to the good old days when ratings weren't enforced and the parents were actually able to help their children play violent games.

Video games are making my kids into killers and rapists, why is nobody doing anything about this? it shouldn't be my responsibility as a parent to know what my child is doing...

Dammed if you do, dammed if you don't

D_987:

Andy Chalk:
snip

See post 7 - the article is highly inaccurate; as on both accounts EA do state, in the item description, that the player must be 13+, and that no refund is possible.

aashell13:
and of course no refund for a product you can't use. sounds like par for the course for EA.

Do explain how EA are meant to work out if the player has deleted the game from his hard-drive when they offer a refund? This isn't Steam on which games can be removed from your account.

They don't have to have it deleted. They won't be able to sign on to play the game when it's removed from the EA account. As an example, I can have a pirated Steam game on my computer, but I can't sign onto Steam and play with it online simply because it's on my hard drive.

As far as post 7 is concerned, it's simply emulating the ESRB rating of the game. I can buy my 9 year old a game rated T for Teen, but he can't buy it himself. That is what the rating system is in place for, to help parents know what is appropriate. But if a parent deems it appropriate, then they shouldn't be able to block the child. And they certainly shouldn't be allowed to steal from people based on that.

Well, I have mixed opinions on this one.

To be honest, right now we're facing a situation where the gaming industry is under pressure for there not being enough attention paid to enforcing ratings. There is even a case before The Supreme Court over this one. If EA just knowingly let kids get access to these kinds of games, that's a big issue.

Now, one thing I will point out though is that while a lot can be said about parental responsibility, and parental rights, there are things parents can't do with their children. While rarely enforced, technically the "PG" rating stands for "Parental Guidance" which means that parents have the choice, and are supposed to accompany their child (or give direct approval on the spot). In the case of an "R" rating, that means restricted and that even with parental approval kids are not supposed to be admitted to those movies, the same applies to an "X" rating. In nasty divorce cases and the like one parent allowing a minor to watch "R" rated movies has been used as a hammer for this reason, since technically it's negligent behavior. In cases where an adult accompanies a kid into an X-rated movie, we're getting to the "Child Services" level.

With the industry under the pressure it's facing now, the last thing that EA needs is for someone to have examples of them giving kids access to "M" rated games which are akin to the "R" rating when they technically aren't supposed to, even with parental permission.

Ratings are tricky because they aren't set by the goverment, there really isn't a way of arresting someone for violating ratings, which is exactly what the whole supreme court case is about. This is also why most theaters aren't going to make a big deal if some kid goes to an "R" rated movie accompanied by their parents. If the parents are there, nobody is going to make the complaint. The game industry however is currently under a microscope, and it doesn't have to just worry about the parents right now.

I'll also say that the parent in question probably shot himself in the foot when he went public with this. I'm not sure when he actually started complaining in a public sense. See, with what is going on EA backing down could be held against the ratings system. The more people aware of the situation (and there are people looking for just this kind of thing right now) the better the chance it will be used someplace EA wouldn't want it to be mentioned.

All told, I am not a huge fan of EA's business practices, but at the same time I can't fault them for this right now.

EA needs to get itself organized however, truthfully this might be the right thing to do, but it's both surprising and hypocritical coming from the same company that came up with that "Dead Space 2" ad campaign. Of course then again, now that it's become fairly public, I suppose EA can take this case as a counterpoint if officially challenged, so they can say "we are very strict in enforcing the ratings, that Ad campaign was *JUST* an Ad campaign, even if it was ill conceived we *obviously* do not condone minors getting "M" rated games under any circumstances... even if an obviously negligent parent gives permission".

D_987:

Baresark:
Though it's morally reprehensible, and I would love to sit here and think of ways that these other two fellas are wrong, the guy should have paid more attention. Microsoft and EA are both guilty of being terrible to their customers, exploiting customers, and overall lousy business practices (We all know how bad EA is). I wish to hell the guy paid more attention.

This is the only important bit; we can have all the arguments over morals and so forth, but at the end of the day the person in question didn't pay attention - and legally lost their money as a result. The system should be fixed, but I don't agree by any means that it's entirely the big companies fault here.

Oh, no, no, no. Let's set up an analogous situation (based on actual events). I send a 17 year old intern to buy dry ice at the store. What I don't know is that the state I am in does not allow anyone under 18 to purchase dry ice. You are saying that the clerk should take his money (my firm's money actually) and then refuse to give him the dry ice? Further, I should not be entitled to a refund? You, good sir, are off your rocker.

rees263:
Can't they just make a new live account with the age set high enough?

I don't have an Xbox so I'm not really sure how it works, but I do know that my friend has several different profiles on his Xbox. Is it because the console can only have 1 "control" account? What happens if you get a second hand Xbox? Are you screwed if the previous owner was a child?

They'd need to pay for another gold account, which is another 50 bucks.

Spend $15 -> turn down $20 in store credit -> kindly stfu, imo.

What the fuck EA! Really?

They are like videogame Nazis.

You can't play this and now here is 20 EA points to re-spend in our store just so we can get your money anyway after denying you your original game.

SwimmingRock:

I largely agree with your post, but had to respond to this bit. Mainly because it's true and shouldn't be. Punishing people for honesty and (worse, in my opinion) taking away a parents right to decide how to raise their child in a way which doesn't conflict with the law, is absolutely unacceptable from any company. EA does not get to raise other peoples children for them. That's not their damn business.

No it isn't their business. But there are too many knee-jerk "Save/Protect the childrens" groups out there with too much public sway for these companies to ignore.
Everyone is looking for a convenient scapegoat.

D_987:
I get the vibe this guy is just exploiting the media to get something free - it's pretty widely known what the risks of entering the "correct" date of birth when you're under-age are; and whilst it's perhaps something for these companies to consider another, louder group of people would complain were it not there. EA, [and Microsoft, who for some reason the person seems to be threatening despite the company having nothing to do with it] can't win either way.

When you buy a game from the marketplace it's specifically stated you can't gain a refund in large bold letters...

While it does say that online purchases are non-refundable, I have to admit, even I didn't know child accounts couldn't play or download items until a friend pointed out that he needed to get another gold account because of it.

I don't think he is trying to get something for free either, if that was the case he would of held back information or simply forgone the entire talking with support hassle, instead I think he is legitimately trying to inform parents that actually let their children play games that are not rated for them online could end up being a major pain.

I mean, nowhere in purchasing games on XBL does it say "Child Accounts Can Not Play This Game", which would be tons easier than buying said game only to realize that your son or daughter cant play it and being out $1-49.99 entirely.

Im not saying that Child Accounts should be wiped entirely, but they should allow a parental override to allow specific games.

puffenstuff:

D_987:

Baresark:
Though it's morally reprehensible, and I would love to sit here and think of ways that these other two fellas are wrong, the guy should have paid more attention. Microsoft and EA are both guilty of being terrible to their customers, exploiting customers, and overall lousy business practices (We all know how bad EA is). I wish to hell the guy paid more attention.

This is the only important bit; we can have all the arguments over morals and so forth, but at the end of the day the person in question didn't pay attention - and legally lost their money as a result. The system should be fixed, but I don't agree by any means that it's entirely the big companies fault here.

Oh, no, no, no. Let's set up an analogous situation (based on actual events). I send a 17 year old intern to buy dry ice at the store. What I don't know is that the state I am in does not allow anyone under 18 to purchase dry ice. You are saying that the clerk should take his money (my firm's money actually) and then refuse to give him the dry ice? Further, I should not be entitled to a refund? You, good sir, are off your rocker.

^this.

Not really on topic with the whole "dick move EA" subject going so far, but relevant with "Child accounts"

I never owned an xbox in my life. I signed up for GFWL, and linked my Zune account into that. This was about four years ago and I was 16 at the time, so I was given a child account. No big I used a different e-mail address as my parents and got on with my life like nothing happened.

Fast forward to a month back when I got a new SSD to use as a boot drive. I installed windows and all my programs, including the zune software. Apparently the EULA had changed since I last agreed to it, so I read it (yes I actually read those), clicked the check box and hit next. Only to be taken to a screen saying my parent needs to login and agree to the EULA. Despite the fact that I am now 20 it did not update to an adult account, and I honestly haven't given enough shits to get it fixed.

*EDIT*

Also doesn't EA require the online account with all their games now? So a nine year old kid couldn't play his copy of Madden, or Need for Speed.

*DOUBLE EDIT*
Can you even use EA store credit on XBL? I was under the impression that M$ wouldn't allow anything other than their space dollars.

He spent $15 and was offered a $20 credit in return? I'd take it

why didn't he just lie about the age on the account in the first place, he should have seen this coming. After all this is what the ESRB is for.

D_987:

SwimmingRock:

D_987:
...it's pretty widely known what the risks of entering the "correct" date of birth when you're under-age are...

I largely agree with your post, but had to respond to this bit. Mainly because it's true and shouldn't be. Punishing people for honesty and (worse, in my opinion) taking away a parents right to decide how to raise their child in a way which doesn't conflict with the law, is absolutely unacceptable from any company. EA does not get to raise other peoples children for them. That's not their damn business.

I agree, and stated as much with the "it's something for these companies to consider" - but I don't see what choice EA have beyond doing what they're doing.

well, i would argue that they can add the option of password protected parental controll, the same that Microsoft uses, if they are willing to go around the service XBOX is providing to have a better controll on their games, i would think they can add that feature... after all the guy HAD to call EA to activate the game that was purchased in the Marketplace, i never knew that was even obligatory

Wow. I think this is the first time I've ever heard the B side of "Won't somebody think of the children?!"

I'm pretty sure the guy could have found this information somewhere, had he bothered to look. And since he knows that his opinions on what kids should be playing are uncommon, you'd think he'd have looked before buying.

Either way, they aren't denying him a refund. He spent 15, and they offered him 20. They just aren't giving him either of the options that he wants.

SwimmingRock:

D_987:
...it's pretty widely known what the risks of entering the "correct" date of birth when you're under-age are...

I largely agree with your post, but had to respond to this bit. Mainly because it's true and shouldn't be. Punishing people for honesty and (worse, in my opinion) taking away a parents right to decide how to raise their child in a way which doesn't conflict with the law, is absolutely unacceptable from any company. EA does not get to raise other peoples children for them. That's not their damn business.

I agree, if the father decides the child is mature enough to play a game no one has any right to tell him otherwise.

Rayne870:
why didn't he just lie about the age on the account in the first place, he should have seen this coming. After all this is what the ESRB is for.

That is NOT what the ESRB is for. The ESRB rating are a guide to help parents buy games for their children. Its not the law.

puffenstuff:

Oh, no, no, no. Let's set up an analogous situation (based on actual events). I send a 17 year old intern to buy dry ice at the store. What I don't know is that the state I am in does not allow anyone under 18 to purchase dry ice. You are saying that the clerk should take his money (my firm's money actually) and then refuse to give him the dry ice? Further, I should not be entitled to a refund? You, good sir, are off your rocker.

EA offered him a refund. In fact, they offered him 5 bucks more than he spent. He turned it down because it wasn't what he wanted.

BabyRaptor:

EA offered him a refund. In fact, they offered him 5 bucks more than he spent. He turned it down because it wasn't what he wanted.

Because the credit for the EA store would mean that his kid wouldn't be allowed to play whatever game on his own account anyway.

There is a reason EA is saying no, for every honest person, there is six cheating bastards, Ea would be broke in no time.

D_987:
When you buy a game from the marketplace it's specifically stated you can't gain a refund in large bold letters...

Doesn't matter.

EA has a legal responsibility to make the father aware of ALL of the terms of the contract BEFORE the purchase. He didn't consent to those terms because he didn't know those terms were there to consent to. Therefore, there was not a meeting of the minds, and the contract is void.

Simply putting "no refunds" on your product doesn't make it true. If I put "I get to kill you if you piss me off" on my ebay sales, does that make it legal for me to murder angry customers? No. Policy does not allow you to break the law, and that is what EA is doing by not fulfilling their end of the contract. The contract is whatever is presented to the father at the time of purchase, and ONLY what is presented to him then. If EA doesn't put age restrictions in the initial purchase description, they don't have a legal right to impose those EVER. You cannot add additional terms to a contract after the customer has already fulfilled his end and given his consent.

By your logic, if EA threw in "Oh and by the way, you have to take us out to a lobster dinner.", somehow they'd be in the right? A lobster dinner was not detailed during the initial purchase, so EA cannot impose a lobster dinner on the father, just as they can't impose an age restriction on the father, because an age restriction wasn't detailed during the initial purchase either.

The father is legally entitled to a functional game that lets his son in. If the age restrictions weren't put in the terms BEFORE the father paid for it, they don't have a legal right to add those restrictions in AFTER. You cannot change the terms of the agreement after it's already been agreed upon, especially if the customer has already fulfilled his end of the bargain. And the father did, indeed, fulfill HIS end of the bargain. He therefore is legally entitled to a game that doesn't restrict his son from playing, because the age restrictions weren't specified from the start. Thus, the age restrictions cannot be imposed upon him. If EA insists on imposing those restrictions on him, that is a BREACH OF CONTRACT on their part, and he's entitled to his money back.

If he took this to court, I'd honestly say that he does have a case.

CustomMagnum:

BabyRaptor:

EA offered him a refund. In fact, they offered him 5 bucks more than he spent. He turned it down because it wasn't what he wanted.

Because the credit for the EA store would mean that his kid wouldn't be allowed to play whatever game on his own account anyway.

If there wasn't a single game in the store that would be playable by kids, why would they offer him the credit to begin with? Sure, he couldn't play THAT game, but he could have gotten something else.

"YOU MUST BE 13+ TO REGISTER WITH EA ONLINE"

Why does that mean you have to be 13+ to play the game?

Last time i checked registering with EA Online =/= playing the game... and further to this, the person registering with EA ONLINE was infact 13+.

It doesnt state the account can not be registered on behalf of someone under the age of 13, and in this case i would also argue that it is being created with the consent of the parent. The broader EA T&C's cover and permit this, so where is the problem? it sounds like a programmer or some exec doesnt understand or mis-interpreted the EA's terms and conditions.

I understand where EA and XBL are coming from, since sales are final, however, if he can't play the game, why would they allow him to buy the game? That's trickery, deceitful, and just plain wrong. And the fact that they're trying to "be the parent" is one of the biggest problems games are facing. You either have the game companies saying no (after they've taken your money of course), or you have parents who are so inattentive that the kid plays games their parents wouldn't normally let them play and when the parents find out they blame the company.

The dad wasn't doing anything wrong here, and the fact that they're treating him badly just because he wants his money back since they won't let his son play a game and punishing him for telling the truth is wrong. Hopefully he can get his money back.

Well, the item is clearly marked with a warning that you need to be 13+ to sign up for an EA account. Guy's fault for not paying more attention and just assuming his kid could play because he had played other games.

Although I do dislike the EA account crap for EA's games in general and wish that would go away. But still, sorry man. The item was clearly marked and you are not entitled to a refund.

Belated:

D_987:
When you buy a game from the marketplace it's specifically stated you can't gain a refund in large bold letters...

Doesn't matter.

EA has a legal responsibility to make the father aware of ALL of the terms of the contract BEFORE the purchase. He didn't consent to those terms because he didn't know those terms were there to consent to. Therefore, there was not a meeting of the minds, and the contract is void.

Simply putting "no refunds" on your product doesn't make it true. If I put "I get to kill you if you piss me off" on my ebay sales, does that make it legal for me to murder angry customers? No. Policy does not allow you to break the law, and that is what EA is doing by not fulfilling their end of the contract. The contract is whatever is presented to the father at the time of purchase, and ONLY what is presented to him then. If EA doesn't put age restrictions in the initial purchase description, they don't have a legal right to impose those EVER. You cannot add additional terms to a contract after the customer has already fulfilled his end and given his consent.

By your logic, if EA threw in "Oh and by the way, you have to take us out to a lobster dinner.", somehow they'd be in the right? A lobster dinner was not detailed during the initial purchase, so EA cannot impose a lobster dinner on the father, just as they can't impose an age restriction on the father, because an age restriction wasn't detailed during the initial purchase either.

The father is legally entitled to a functional game that lets his son in. If the age restrictions weren't put in the terms BEFORE the father paid for it, they don't have a legal right to add those restrictions in AFTER. You cannot change the terms of the agreement after it's already been agreed upon, especially if the customer has already fulfilled his end of the bargain. And the father did, indeed, fulfill HIS end of the bargain. He therefore is legally entitled to a game that doesn't restrict his son from playing, because the age restrictions weren't specified from the start. Thus, the age restrictions cannot be imposed upon him. If EA insists on imposing those restrictions on him, that is a BREACH OF CONTRACT on their part, and he's entitled to his money back.

If he took this to court, I'd honestly say that he does have a case.

A case for a $15 dollar purchase that he was IGNORANT about? Most likely won't ever touch court as it would be a joke.

Ignorance is not an excuse.

This is a direct quote from Thomas' blog post:

"Just about every weekend, Tommy and I play EA's online FPS Battlefield 1943 together, taking turns by passing the controller between us. About a month ago, I decided I'd had enough of playing hotseat and decided to get the kid his own copy of the game for his Xbox 360 on the Xbox Live Marketplace.

I paid Microsoft $14.99 for 1200 points to buy the game, and used the points to purchase the game on the Xbox Live Marketplace. The game downloaded fine without any warnings and I started the game up.

Since the game is an EA title, I had the misfortune to have to deal with EA.com's online game authentication. Tommy didn't play any EA online games prior to BF1943, so I had to create an account for him. I went through the steps and hit the Connect button and the game just sat there endlessly spinning it's 'Connecting...' indicator.

I waited 15 minutes, reset the Xbox 360 and tried again with the same result. I tried this probably a dozen times over the day, and never got any closer to getting into the game.

I contacted EA support about the issue, and was advised to download another EA online game demo and use it to create the user account. I downloaded the latest iteration of Madden and started it up. I was presented the EA Terms of Service agreement and when I hit the button to accept the terms, I was told I had to be at least 13 to play EA games online.

At no point during my purchase of BF1943 using my son's account was I warned that there were any age requirements for the game."

I don't have Xbox Live myself so I can't verify the claims. D_987 says a statement indicating you have to be 13 or older to "register with EA Online," which for the record isn't the same as playing the game, is available at Xbox.com, but is the same information also available during the purchase process on Xbox Live? And if it is, but buried in section 27 of some EULA, is that kosher? Do publishers not have some obligation to provide adequate warning to gamers that they may not be able to access content they're purchasing above and beyond a line of text two-thirds of the way down a huge legal document that nobody reads anyway?

Atmos Duality:

SwimmingRock:

I largely agree with your post, but had to respond to this bit. Mainly because it's true and shouldn't be. Punishing people for honesty and (worse, in my opinion) taking away a parents right to decide how to raise their child in a way which doesn't conflict with the law, is absolutely unacceptable from any company. EA does not get to raise other peoples children for them. That's not their damn business.

No it isn't their business. But there are too many knee-jerk "Save/Protect the childrens" groups out there with too much public sway for these companies to ignore.
Everyone is looking for a convenient scapegoat.

Unfortunately, this is very true. If I had some brilliant alternative, I would have mentioned it. All I can really think of is giving the companies less responsibility and the parents more, but you know as well as I do how that ends: lawsuits from lazy parents.

BabyRaptor:

CustomMagnum:

BabyRaptor:

EA offered him a refund. In fact, they offered him 5 bucks more than he spent. He turned it down because it wasn't what he wanted.

Because the credit for the EA store would mean that his kid wouldn't be allowed to play whatever game on his own account anyway.

If there wasn't a single game in the store that would be playable by kids, why would they offer him the credit to begin with? Sure, he couldn't play THAT game, but he could have gotten something else.

But wouldn't those other games, if they have online play, require an EA Store account, which you need to be 13 or older to register for, and therefore couldn't be used for his son's account?

jp201:

Belated:

D_987:
When you buy a game from the marketplace it's specifically stated you can't gain a refund in large bold letters...

Doesn't matter.

EA has a legal responsibility to make the father aware of ALL of the terms of the contract BEFORE the purchase. He didn't consent to those terms because he didn't know those terms were there to consent to. Therefore, there was not a meeting of the minds, and the contract is void.

Simply putting "no refunds" on your product doesn't make it true. If I put "I get to kill you if you piss me off" on my ebay sales, does that make it legal for me to murder angry customers? No. Policy does not allow you to break the law, and that is what EA is doing by not fulfilling their end of the contract. The contract is whatever is presented to the father at the time of purchase, and ONLY what is presented to him then. If EA doesn't put age restrictions in the initial purchase description, they don't have a legal right to impose those EVER. You cannot add additional terms to a contract after the customer has already fulfilled his end and given his consent.

By your logic, if EA threw in "Oh and by the way, you have to take us out to a lobster dinner.", somehow they'd be in the right? A lobster dinner was not detailed during the initial purchase, so EA cannot impose a lobster dinner on the father, just as they can't impose an age restriction on the father, because an age restriction wasn't detailed during the initial purchase either.

The father is legally entitled to a functional game that lets his son in. If the age restrictions weren't put in the terms BEFORE the father paid for it, they don't have a legal right to add those restrictions in AFTER. You cannot change the terms of the agreement after it's already been agreed upon, especially if the customer has already fulfilled his end of the bargain. And the father did, indeed, fulfill HIS end of the bargain. He therefore is legally entitled to a game that doesn't restrict his son from playing, because the age restrictions weren't specified from the start. Thus, the age restrictions cannot be imposed upon him. If EA insists on imposing those restrictions on him, that is a BREACH OF CONTRACT on their part, and he's entitled to his money back.

If he took this to court, I'd honestly say that he does have a case.

A case for a $15 dollar purchase that he was IGNORANT about? Most likely won't ever touch court as it would be a joke.

Ignorance is not an excuse.

Nice try, but think again.

"Ignorance is not an excuse." is applied to LAW, not to contract terms. EA's "We will not let you allow your kid to play this, even if you give consent as his parent." term is NOT a law. It is a term. A term that they have an obligation to make aware to the father before he signs the contract. How was he supposed to know he wouldn't be allowed to let his son play? That part of the agreement wasn't outlined to him in the beginning. That doesn't make him ignorant. EA's at fault for not telling him this. What was he supposed to do? Magically read their minds and know what the second sheet of terms would be? Tell you what. Blow up that banana on my kitchen table. With your mind. Do it. And I'll believe that psychic powers exist. That is the ONLY way you can win this argument.

But seriously, "Ignorance is not an excuse."? How gullible do you think I am? That's like saying "Stop drop and roll!" when telling somebody how to clean cake frosting off their face. It's the wrong phrase for the wrong situation. As I said, that phrase only applies to an actual law. EA's term is not a law, it is their term. A term they did not state in the initial contract.

Belated:
If EA doesn't put age restrictions in the initial purchase description, they don't have a legal right to impose those EVER.

The problem with your rant is that they did put them in the initial purchase description.

http://marketplace.xbox.com/en-US/Product/Battlefield-1943/66acd000-77fe-1000-9115-d8025841097e?cid=search&DownloadType=Game
Click the "description" link and bam:

REGISTRATION AND GOLD SUBSCRIPTION REQUIRED. EA ONLINE TERMS AND CONDITIONS AND FEATURE UPDATES ARE FOUND AT www.ea.com. YOU MUST BE 13+ TO REGISTER WITH EA ONLINE.

And here it is on the 360 itself:

Notice that I accessed this screen WITHOUT buying the product. I still have to select that "confirm purchase" option to actually trade my MS Points for a copy of the game. I have not purchased Battlefield 1943 yet, and I am being told that I must be 13+ to register with EA Online, which is required to play (as seen in the above quote's first sentence, "REGISTRATION AND GOLD SUBSCRIPTION REQUIRED."). There is no scam going on here, it told you before you purchased that you need to be 13 or older. And I am not pulling any tricks here; here's a picture of what you see on a game if you have already bought it:

Thus, if your description of how "legal" things are is correct, EA does have the right to enforce this and MS does have the right to enforce the no refunds policy.

Belated:
If he took this to court, I'd honestly say that he does have a case.

I'd honestly say that he doesn't, and that you don't know all the facts of this story yet.

Andy Chalk:
I don't have Xbox Live myself so I can't verify the claims. D_987 says a statement indicating you have to be 13 or older to "register with EA Online," which for the record isn't the same as playing the game, is available at Xbox.com, but is the same information also available during the purchase process on Xbox Live? And if it is, but buried in section 27 of some EULA, is that kosher?

No, it's right there on the page. You can scroll through the text with the right stick to ensure that you read at your own pace and don't miss anything. It seems quite clear to me, registration is required and you must be 13+ to register.


As far as I'm concerned, the dad should have paid more attention before making his purchase and isn't entitled to a refund because the information is indeed provided before you buy anything.

Allow me to put this into a very simple notion.

EA is selling defective games. (Namely, if you can't play it, it's a defective product. Period. End of story.) Defective games are to be refunded or the suing starts. The customer IS right on this occasion.

Belated:
How was he supposed to know he wouldn't be allowed to let his son play?

By reading ALL of the information on the page before agreeing to purchase the game. Very simple.

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