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11 year old runs up £3k F2P bill, refused refund and told to "think happy thoughts"

ffdgh

Member
Sucks but I'm having a hard time buying that he didn't get his stuff from weeks of trying. Errors happen understandably but still...
 

Brazil

Living in the shadow of Amaz
Hold that L, shitty parents. Don't give an 11-year old control over your finances, for Christ's sake.

Still, what happened is pretty damn shitty.
 

c-murph

Member
Yeeeeeah, no.

I don't think she should be refunded.

Kid got addicted and used all his mother's money. Her fault for not setting limits on gameplay and purchases. Why would she ever give her card to her son?!
 

Copenap

Member
No, it's totally correct. Google Play, Playstation Network, X-box Live, Humble Bundle, Steam, et. al that SAVE your credit card information... let me repeat that SAVE ALL YOUR CREDIT CARD INFORMATION. ALL OF IT. Your full number. XXXX XXXX XXXX XXXX and the 3 digit pin YYY. Along with the name/information for the card you entered.

This is bad for security at the sake of "not having to enter your credit card information for each purchase" convenience.

The silver lining is: You can remove this information but it's a hassle unless Google/et. al. are like Wizards of the Coast where they DON'T save your credit card information (the XXXX XXXX XXXX XXXX YYY numbers/pin) but save your billing info for Magic: Online purchases. Problem is, a lot of companies don't go this route.
Wait a second, just to make sure we're talking about the same thing. On the google/psn etc. server the entire cc info is saved, no doubt about that, it pretty much has to.

What I meant is that if someone has access to your account he can only display the shortened cc info. Are you sure that when I go to my google/psn etc. account info there will be my entire cc no.? Can't check right now but I have never seen that.

Of course someone hacking the entire server and retreiving cc info is a totally different problem but not what I was referring to.
 
I love how everyone in this thread just knows that the kid is lying. Yeah, sure, no refund necessary, it's definitely the little shit's fault. /s

I'm sorry, but do you have kids? If you did, you would realize just how often they will lie to you, straight to your face to try to avoid punishment. Children come with a built-in lying function. Kids lie from the very moment they start talking. I have seen my kids do something with my own eyes, then turn around and tell me 5 minutes later that they didn't when they are about to get in trouble for doing it.

Kids will ALWAYS try to get away with everything they can, even if they flat out know they aren't supposed/allowed to. Just like adults, they think that, of no one is around to see them, they will get away with it Scott-free.
 
Nice to know some people still believe in benefit of doubt, even if it was irresponsible parenting to outright give cc details to a minor.

For Larry king's sake: How tech savvy is he?
 
This is fucking stupid. They should get all their money back immediately.

I hope somebody comes and makes a good case to sue these cheeseball companies that are getting rich off of kids with no concept of money who have their parents bank account on tap because nobody fully understands what they're getting into.

I think the people in this topic saying this is 'bad parenting' or whatever are being pretty ridiculous. Sometimes companies do unscrupulous shit to trick people into paying them and this is one of the ways.

Whether the kid is lying or not doesn't matter - the kid couldn't walk into a shop and spend that much money on anything, and they would get refunded if there was some mistake. Kids aren't responsible, and that's why they shouldn't have access to this kind of thing. A lot of parents enter bank details into tablets once and forget about it. You shouldn't be able to go into debt or miss actual important life bills from meaningless digital purchases within a game.

Actually they should probably get strict about this. One click buys shouldn't be legal and there should be measures to stop this kind of compulsive spending on nothing.
 

RAWi

Member
Google shouldn't refund.

Is like giving your child $3K USD and after knowing he/she spent everything on whatever physical store, go those stores and ask for refund.

Is the same thing, just with credit cards and apps.


Bad parenting is bad parenting.
 

BigDes

Member
Google shouldn't refund.

Is like giving your child $3K USD and after knowing he/she spent everything on whatever physical store, go those stores and ask for refund.

Is the same thing, just with credit cards and apps.


Bad parenting is bad parenting.

TBH I would say that should probably reach out to the family, if only for that shitty condescending "think happy thoughts" line.
 
Gives free reign to use the card to child

goes two months without noticing the charges

The thing is if she had just said the charges were not authorized by her the bank would reverse them all and google couldn't argue.

While i do think almost all the blame is on the parent/child, i'm always amazed that these mobile games are so greedy as to not institute some kind of cap on purchases per day/week/month.

Certainly by doing so they would avoid some fraudulent charges/chargebacks. There's no reason someone needs to spend $3000 on a mobile game in 3 months. No reason.
 

Mephala

Member
O_O

Must... Resist urge to make meme out of pic of kid in article.

Edit.
Google should at the very least investigate the glitch claim by contacting the game's support/devs. If it is true then I think they should refund it otherwise I don't think they should. Not that it matters what I think because Google refunded it while still investigating.
 

Kai Dracon

Writing a dinosaur space opera symphony
Regardless of whether the app actually screwed up, I don't care how savvy an 11-year old is. For something like this you should only let your kid charge payments from say, pre-paid cards with a set amount of IAP purchases.
 
O_O

Must... Resist urge to make meme out of pic of kid in article.



Criminal fucking mastermind.
 
Who doesn't check their account over 2 months?

This, for real.

When I worked for Xbox Support I personally witnessed several cases like this. Children spending 3-5k on games, DLC, and virtual currency. Seriously, and parents would come calling and yelling about the whole thing, stating it was fraud, hackers, etc. I could check their game usage and clearly explain their children play all of the games the purchases were associated with. The crazy part was always how long these things went. Seriously how can it possible take 6-12 months to finally notice these bills. We did have to escalate issues like this, but Microsoft has systems in place to check where the accounts were logged in from, and could tell if it was fraudulent, and if it wasn't, there's no way they're giving you a refund either.
 

Jopie

Member
The credit didn't show up on his account after payment? I think it's more likely that the kid just wanted to buy more credits

There is no incentive in games like these to make repeated, small purchases. Unless the 11 year old developed an intricate con that involved him buying the smallest possible purchases over and over again, then he would have just bought a bigger IAP to get more credits at once.

Typically games like this have offers similar to this:
Spend 5 dollars get 50 credits (10 credits per dollar), which are followed by:

Spend 100 dollars get 5000 credits + super bonus, and there are giant banners that say things like "Save 75% that attract your attention.

if the intent is to get a lot of credits, doing it 3 dollars at a time is the worst way of doing it.
 
Wow gaf is full of lames. She shouldn't have given him her details, but if he really wasn't getting the credits then it's not entirely his fault. They should get a refund if this is really what happened
 
Read the OP?



No-confirmation purchases should be straight up illegal.

There are plenty of confirmations when you buy things on both App Store and Google Play.

And yeah, this story is BS. There are many checks put in place to make sure that first off you are sure you want to buy this (y/n) and second purchased IAPs make it to your account. Google aren't stupid, they didn't deny the refund out of spite.
 

Mephala

Member
There is no incentive in games like these to make repeated, small purchases. Unless the 11 year old developed an intricate con that involved him buying the smallest possible purchases over and over again, then he would have just bought a bigger IAP to get more credits at once.

Typically games like this have offers similar to this:
Spend 5 dollars get 50 credits (10 credits per dollar), which are followed by:

Spend 100 dollars get 5000 credits + super bonus, and there are giant banners that say things like "Save 75% that attract your attention.

if the intent is to get a lot of credits, doing it 3 dollars at a time is the worst way of doing it.

This is true but it depends on the way the game handles it. Some games offers promts for small purchases on a "as needed" basis such as when you run out of energy or want to speed up wait times etc.
 
People aren't trying to argue that it's the mother's fault rather than the fact that that shit was glitched, right?

Replace the 11 year old with an 28 year old and the situation is equally unjust.

Unless the kid is lying through his teeth, i guess.
 

Ponn

Banned
Sucks but I'm having a hard time buying that he didn't get his stuff from weeks of trying. Errors happen understandably but still...

He got them. He's 11 and got caught, panicked and made up some bullshit excuse knowing his mom didn't know any better and would believe him because "he's tech savvy and trustworthy"

I still can't believe people think kids are idiots and paragons of truth till they magically hit 18. Kids are smarter than parents nowadays when it comes to tech, they know it and will take advantage of it. That doesn't mean kids are wise or make the best choices, that comes with experience, age and responsibility for their own actions.
 
I'm sorry, but do you have kids? If you did, you would realize just how often they will lie to you, straight to your face to try to avoid punishment. Children come with a built-in lying function. Kids lie from the very moment they start talking. I have seen my kids do something with my own eyes, then turn around and tell me 5 minutes later that they didn't when they are about to get in trouble for doing it.

Kids will ALWAYS try to get away with everything they can, even if they flat out know they aren't supposed/allowed to. Just like adults, they think that, of no one is around to see them, they will get away with it Scott-free.

Lol, I can relate to this post having a 6 year old.
 

Noaloha

Member
I'm not 100% up on how Debit Cards work or how services like F2P in-game transactions interact with the way Debit Cards work.

From the parent's story, the kid had made intermittent, single in-app-purchases before, with her consent. So one day he tried buying something in one game, didn't work, so he mashed on the purchase button a bunch more times, still nothing. Then he did the same in game number 2. I'm assuming if the parent's Debit Account was empty, this would explain why the game purchases didn't go through. But how does the Debit Account handle transactions like that? Are the purchase attempts supposed to be trashed, as you'd expect, or are they kept 'live' for a period of time, or in some kind of a pending status until such a time as money is placed back in the account?
 

Omega

Banned
Like thousands of other parents, Penny Wrinch handed over her debit card details to allow her “highly trustworthy and technically savvy” son Nick to buy games

Who does this?

My parents wouldn't even use their CC to let me register a SOCOM 3 online username when I was around that age, and that was just for verification purposes. i couldn't have spent money even if i wanted to
 
They should refund the kid. These kind of computer errors happen often. Like that time last year when I went on a pilgrimage to Lourdes with my church group, and my wife found out that my credit card was erroneusly charged with some bogus receipts from Amsterdam.



I could see it going both ways. Technical problems with stuff like this are pretty common (especially when you're buying digital currency). I guess it boils down to whether the credits were used or not.
 

SmokyDave

Member
Wow gaf is full of lames. She shouldn't have given him her details, but if he really wasn't getting the credits then it's not entirely his fault. They should get a refund if this is really what happened
You actually believe this shit?

In fact Nick had simply been trying – and seemingly failing – to buy credits to play football management game Top Eleven 2015 and strategy game Clash of Clans among others. Rather than the expected small number of payments of between £1.49 and £7.99 going out of Penny’s account, it would appear that after making a purchase the credits never reached Nick, causing him to click and click in vain to make them appear.

On 2 March alone, 21 payments of £3.99 and a further nine of £1.49 disappeared from Penny’s account. The next day Nick tried again to buy the credits and the same thing happened – with 18 payments being made to Google. A week later 27 payments of between £2.99 and £6.99 were all debited.

In total, Penny says £3,000 was paid to Google Play over a two-month period,
He was repeatedly clicking away at these two games for two months despite him never getting the credits? You believe that?

Not once did he mention this to his mum? Not once did he ask her to check her account had money in because he hadn't got his credits?

Bollocks. Just another kid given access to their parents bank account.
 
I want to see less company shaming in these kind of stories and more bad parent shaming.

You give your child an internet-connected mobile device with payment details logged in and/or parental controls off, and somehow it's someone else's fault when little Johnny rubs together the two braincells he got from his parents and decided to mash the buy button.
 

kingwingin

Member
Just tell the mom to buy more credits and video tape it proving the credits don't go through or look like an idiot when they do
 

Angry Fork

Member
So many people want vengeance against a parent who made a mistake. I'm not even a parent and feel terrible for them. Do none of you know the feeling of having nothing in your bank account but still needing money for various responsibilities?

Yea she shouldn't have given her card to an 11 year old, but does that justify laughing/"no sympathy"/GOT WHAT THEY DESERVED type responses? And in defense of a corporation no less. What the hell is wrong with some of you?
 

Kieli

Member
Yeah, it's such a shitty state of mind.
It's entirely possible the kid is lying but his version doesn't sound exactly far fetched either.

Ok then.

The developers can EASILY, EASILY verify on the back-end whether or not the credits went through, and exactly how and at what time the credits were spent.

I'd like to see how the kid explains away detailed logs explaining he spent x on z at time y when he supposedly "didn't get jack diddly squat, so he kept tapping the button".

If he can't explain it away, he should be fined a trillion emerald orbs for lying.
 

VariantX

Member
Dunno why kids have access to those passwords in the first place. The pre paid card solution is the best one. It's just asking for trouble.
 
Quit giving kids your fucking payment info.

Mobile IAP is a shit hole, but giving out your payment, especially to a kid, is an incident waiting to happen. Is there a two step purchase for those IAP? I know some games ask if you're sure you want a purchase.
 
Yeah I read the article. It's still the mothers fault. Who in their right mind clicks on a transaction hundreds of times when it doesn't go through the first time, without at least checking with their bank to see whats going on after the first i dunno, 10 failed attempts. Oh wait, a child with unrestricted access to a debit card, that's who.
 
Quit giving kids your fucking payment info.

Mobile IAP is a shit hole, but giving out your payment, especially to a kid, is an incident waiting to happen. Is there a two step purchase for those IAP? I know some games ask if you're sure you want a purchase.

Yup, make the transaction yourself, and monitor your finances if anything goes wrong, don't rely on a kid to do it. Fucking lazy.
 

Darksol

Member
So many people want vengeance against a parent who made a mistake. I'm not even a parent and feel terrible for them. Do none of you know the feeling of having nothing in your bank account but still needing money for various responsibilities?

Yea she shouldn't have given her card to an 11 year old, but does that justify laughing/"no sympathy"/GOT WHAT THEY DESERVED type responses? And in defense of a corporation no less. What the hell is wrong with some of you?

I am well acquainted with having no money and needing plenty. But yes, I'm fine with berating a stupid move on her part. I'm defending a corporation in this instance because the corporation is in the right. How stupid do you have to be to give your credit card info to a child and then ignore checking your statement for months? Who's fault is this if not the parent? It isn't a business' job to prevent you from buying their stuff.

The mother has absolutely no right to a refund.
 
I thought Google had an automatic "flood" system in place to verify payments and issue refunds based on payment errors? A similar thing happen to me a while back. My niece wanted a new game that had just been released and (with me supervising her) she tried to purchase it off the Google Play Store. She did the same thing this kid did with the purchase failing and her repeatedly clicking trying to buy it over and over. She stopped quite quickly because I obviously intervened.

Checked my account that night and about four payments (each of the game's cost) left my account. The following day Google had refunded me three of them and just charged me for the one successful purchase of the actual game. So ever since then I assumed Google had an automatic failed payment "flood" control.

So does this system not apply to in-app purchases or something?
 

haimon

Member
My kid has a iPad and she has a password set for everything. Even if she wants to install free apps she needs to have me help her with it.

The reason for this is exactly the issue that happened here. She wanted to start buying all kinds of things for apps, and if I had not limited her, she would have spent who knows how much.

When she had access to my wife's phone, she ended up buying an app, and my wife was shocked when I asked her about it. My wife has no idea how to deal with tech, and if she was in charge, my kid would cost us an arm and a leg.
 
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