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Dad gets nearly $8,000 bill after son racks up charges from microtransactions in FIFA

There's something very wrong with a game you can spend $8000 in. As hamfisted as they can be, I hope national legislators eventually step in, as it's pretty clear you can't rely on the industry to regulate itself and establish good practices.

And yeah, of course that kid knew what he was doing and the dad is playing dumb, they're not spotless victims.
 
No sympathies here, this is what happens when you give your credit card to your son or daughter who is completely addicted to one specific game, plus the 17 year old is talking bollocks, he knows exactly what he was doing.

How many purchase screens did this kid miss? I'm not too familiar with Fifa's Microtransactions, guessing the top one is 100 or 200 dollars. Also get the kid to work to pay the debt off, he should be legally responsible for his stupid actions.
 

bootski

Member
There's something very wrong with a game you can spend $8000 in. As hamfisted as they can be, I hope national legislators eventually step in, as it's pretty clear you can't rely on the industry to regulate itself and establish good practices.

And yeah, of course that kid knew what he was doing and the dad is playing dumb, they're not spotless victims.

so who's gonna keep track of people buying physical goods for more than $8000 in Magic cards or tabletop games or remote control cars?
 

Teeth

Member
compulsive or pathological gambling has been a defined disorder for ~20 years now. i'd suggest you do some light reading and see if taco bell ordering would qualify. in fact, personal financial ruin, family member involvement, lying to cover up etc are all documented predictable steps of a compulsive gambler.

i still think the father should be on the hook for the payment of course. i just don't see how the argument could possibly be made that this isn't a form of gambling.

Can one develop gambling addiction in less than a month, exclusively spending someone else's money? It's a behavioural addiction, not a chemical or even physical addiction.

I mean, it's defined by taking bigger and bigger risks to get a bigger and bigger thrill. He wasn't using his own money to start with. It's not like he ran out of his paycheck and started scrambling to find ways to get his fix. This person wasn't risking anything other than having his dad lie for him to the CBC in the first place.

Also, new theories on addiction is that they aren't actually related to the activity in the addiction itself, but to a absence within the individual's life in the first place. See:
https://www.ted.com/talks/johann_ha...you_know_about_addiction_is_wrong?language=en
Under such a theory, there would be no such thing as a predatory business practice, because no matter what they do to entice someone or create "addiction", it would be irrelevant in the face of the person's life position anyway.

One could argue it absolves the businesses of responsibility entirely. Almost as if arguing about psychology and predictive/descriptive behavioural science is sort of difficult to define absolutes in analogues in the first place.
 

grimmiq

Member
so who's gonna keep track of people buying physical goods for more than $8000 in Magic cards or tabletop games or remote control cars?

My late teens/early 20's self would have benefited greatly from Warhammer being illegal..that was a shameful amount of money spent, kickstarted by a friend selling off theirs cheap.
 
I really dont understand why so many people are defending the dad and the kid. Seriously a 17 year old person (if not mentaly challanged) could not in anyway not know what he was doing. Claiming otherwise is bullshit with the necessary steps and information you have to agree. The dad should not give his son a creditcard with a limit that high if he was not ok whit him spending it. Sure it was for emergencies but what fucking emergancy would have you pay 8k?

This is purely on them and I see no reason for MS or EA to pay them back in this case since we are basically dealing with two adults that should both have been smarter.

However these pure RNG based microtransactions need to go. If you could aquire messi or any other player for your team for a set cost or try your luck at a random deck that would be fine by me but just having RNG should be illegal. Sure you could aquire them from the market place in FIFA but those on there are all so rare and based on RNG from the beginning that the price gets inflated to ridicolus amounts.

He probably would not even have to open any pack he could just have bought every player he wanted from there with that money.
 

RoadHazard

Gold Member
That's either a very dumb or a very dishonest 17-year-old. Like, come on. Yeah, it's fucking insane that you can even blow through that much on digital air, but that shit doesn't just happen by accident. Unless you're five, or have the cognitive ability of one, in which case the parents have a responsibility not to let their kid go haywire with free access to a credit card. Can't really blame EA here, even with how ridiculous it is that this is possible.
 

bootski

Member
Can one develop gambling addiction in less than a month, exclusively spending someone else's money? It's a behavioural addiction, not a chemical or even physical addiction.

I mean, it's defined by taking bigger and bigger risks to get a bigger and bigger thrill. He wasn't using his own money to start with. It's not like he ran out of his paycheck and started scrambling to find ways to get his fix. This person wasn't risking anything other than having his dad lie for him to the CBC in the first place.

Also, new theories on addiction is that they aren't actually related to the activity in the addiction itself, but to a absence within the individual's life in the first place. See:
https://www.ted.com/talks/johann_ha...you_know_about_addiction_is_wrong?language=en
Under such a theory, there would be no such thing as a predatory business practice, because no matter what they do to entice someone or create "addiction", it would be irrelevant in the face of the person's life position anyway.

One could argue it absolves the businesses of responsibility entirely. Almost as if arguing about psychology and predictive/descriptive behavioural science is sort of difficult to define absolutes in analogues in the first place.

I'd say yes, you can become an addict in a month. i'd even say you could become addicted to gambling the very first time you do it. the fact that it wasn't his own money only exacerbated the issue. i think the ted talk guy is interesting but it's certainly just one anecdotal experience being shared vs. the decades of medical research done on pathological behaviors like gambling.

i don't think businesses should be absolved of ALL responsibility but i would certainly be absolutely against any goverment regulation on anything ruled a game of chance, even when not involving cash winnings.

what needs to be addressed is personal responsibility. the father made a huge mistake in giving his kid a card with that high a limit, while not monitoring the card itself, not monitoring his xbox purchases and being obviously uninvolved in his kids life since i showed in my post above that the amount of time alone spent to buy and open these packs in this game would have been excessive by any standard. the father should pay the bill. make his son pay him back and consider getting him some help.
 

Geido

Member
In The Netherlands we have a law which states that a parent can undo every transaction their kid (if they're under 18) makes. Does something like that not exist in the US?

The idea is that you can't hold a minor to a binding contract because they're stupid, basically. Which (if I recall my own teenage years) is pretty much true.
 

Tripolygon

Member
Some of these games are designed specifically for the purpose of getting people to spend money as frequently as possible.

...Oh so you've exhausted your lives, instead of waiting 2 hours, buy 5 lives for .99 cents. By the time you realize, you'd spend $10....

That's how these free to play games net 10s and 100s of millions in profit every quarter.

I'm currently playing Real Racing 3 on my iPhone. The game is free to play.

Drive your car twice, you have to wait X minutes or hours for car to rest and regain energy, or you can skip this rest period by spending 10 gold. Oh I see, you haven't watched enough ads and you've run out of your weekly 20 free golds well we have the deal of a lifetime for you. Buy this 9000 gold for the low price of $4.

The one that gets me is.

...Oh you have to race this event that we setup but you need this particular car and it ain't free. It costs 200 gold (some go up to 1000+) oh well you have no choice but to win every achievement (which some requires you to spend gold) to get that amount of gold so we are going to offer you 90,000 gold for $99. So cheap....
 
Lol so the kid was 17 and didn't realise he racked up 8 stacks playing FUT?

 

N30RYU

Member
What pisses me more isn't the fact that you can spend thousands of dollars in a game... is that incompetent fathers have no shame in going to the media to air their incompetence.
 
What pisses me more isn't the fact that you can spend thousands of dollars in a game... is that incompetent fathers have no shame in going to the media to air their incompetence.

It's probably worth it to him if he can raise enough public outcry to pressure Microsoft into reversing the charges and making it all go away.

Why else would someone go to the media like this?
 
Damn what a stupid mistake. Why even allow your child to have access to your Credit Card if you aren't going monitor it. Pretty easy to check and see what his "emergencies" are. I mean, I understand how easy it is for a teen to go crazy with a credit card, when I was 14 my Father allowed me to us their credit card for emergencies as well. Spent $2000 in the first month and we had the talk of how credit works and I had to apologize to my Father, and I felt like an idiot when I saw them make the payment.

But still, $8000 is such an incompressible amount. Like how. Dad made a stupid mistake, Son made many stupid mistakes, and they should just take the hard loss. Maybe make the son get a job and start paying the Father for the bill.
 

T_Exige

Member
Who has a + $8000 credit card limit? On top of that, why doesn't his bank give a warning, like > $2500.

I know the kid is to blame, but like always -> EA.
Give us back the "Porsche license" scum!
 

Monocle

Member
That kid had a ball for a while, but now he's got to kick his FIFA habit.

I'll be here all week, folks. Try the veal.
 
When are these 'micro' transactions going to get regulated.

The companies have no intent of doing it themselves so it needs doing for them

Astonishing the card company didn't think to call sooner either.

I'm not even a 'privilege customer' but my company calls if I look like I'm spending a lot quickly
 
You'd think there'd be a limit at some point, or at least a warning from the credit card company. While the kid and his father certainly made mistakes, these kind of situations shouldn't be possible to begin with. You really shouldn't be able to waste that kind of money on microtransactions ever in any situation. The law should protect people from stupid stuff like this, and companies should never stoop to this level of greed in trying to maximize their profits. Personally I'd see cases like these terrible pr for their product.
 
The fact that you can spend $8,000 in a FIFA game is insane. The kid is not to blame completly, EA should take responsibility

Why should they? SOME people might want to spend that much on a game, I'm certainly not one of those people but why should they be to blame for expecting people to keep account of their own spending, we're not a bunch of retards. If your child is, then don't give them your credit card details! FFS this world is getting dumber by the day, we shouldn't blame others for our own actions simple as that.
 

Tunesmith

formerly "chigiri"
Hey does FIFA DLC carry from year to year? Or do you have to rebuy this shit over and over?

You have to rebuy over and over I believe.

And some people happily do. God knows why.
FIFA Points, which is the premium currency you purchase with money carries over between FIFA 14 through 16 (and eventually 17). The FIFA Coins you convert these points into to buy players does not carry over between games.
 

oni-link

Member
The son should say the 8k was a one off payment agreed for work he did in FIFA 09 - 11 based on a verbal agreement

Blatter style
 
Pay up fuckwits. Unless your 17 year old can neither read nor count, then he knew precisely what was going on.

Same story every 3 months of some dumbass trying to skip a bill that was caused by their own ignorance and/or stupidity. Put some parental controls on your accounts, its not that hard.
 

billyxci

Permabanned.
Dad should pay it if he doesn't want to take responsibility for his kid. But nope, he did nothing wrong! EA must be to blame!
 

FeD.nL

Member
Dad should pay it if he doesn't want to take responsibility for his kid. But nope, he did nothing wrong! EA must be to blame!

The sad part is that it's not even blamed on EA but Microsoft.

They should just put all parental controls on by default at this point.
 

geordiemp

Member
And yet again, a parent blames the console manufacturer for his own mistake.

But Sony and MS and store holders should allow credit card holders to put a weekly or monthly limit on spending.

A store has shared responsibility, they are getting their 30 % cut or whatever.
 
Seeing a lot of people amazed at a $8000 limit. If it is in the Dad's name, and he is in good credit standing, that is actually a low limit for a credit card. It's one of life's eye openers, just how much certain institutions really want you to get into a lot of debt (a lesson the son has just learned the hard way)
 

im_dany

Member
But Sony and MS and store holders should allow credit card holders to put a weekly or monthly limit on spending.

A store has shared responsibility, they are getting their 30 % cut or whatever.

What if a millionaire wants to waste his money on a game? Why does he have to be limited because of dumb people?

Yes, both the dad and the son were dumb. The dad because he gave his credit card details to his son, and the son because you should realize money is real when you're 17 years-old. And if he does and he's lying (I find it hard to believe him), then he should face the consequences for his actions.

Let's stop blaming others for people's mistakes.
 

Brockxz

Member
But Sony and MS and store holders should allow credit card holders to put a weekly or monthly limit on spending.

A store has shared responsibility, they are getting their 30 % cut or whatever.

That's not MS or Sony job to do. I don 't know how it is in other countries but where I live you can make a lot control mechanisms to your credit card so you always know how much you spend and on what. For example Bank sends sms to your phone when you make a purchase or when you reach some limit in a day/week/month.
 

Z O N E

Member
I hope they don't get refunded...

It takes multiple clicks to buy something.

Parental controls are shown when you make an account or transfer one to the Xbox One.

The son admitted to illicit activities with the card.

Sorry, but at 17, I was working and going to school. So for this kid to claim he had no idea he would be charged is just... I don't have any words.
 

Zelias

Banned
Kid is lying or he's frighteningly dumb for a 17 year old. Either way, he should never have had access to a credit card.
 

oni-link

Member
I hope they don't get refunded...

It takes multiple clicks to buy something.

Parental controls are shown when you make an account or transfer one to the Xbox One.

The son admitted to illicit activities with the card.

Sorry, but at 17, I was working and going to school. So for this kid to claim he had no idea he would be charged is just... I don't have any words.

I can see what you mean, but an 8k hit to a family can really hurt them, even ruin their lives. The 17 year old is an idiot, but EA are selling virtual goods they have an infinite amount of, it seems kind of cruel to ruin someones life because of this

There needs to be better checks and balances on MTs in general, no game in the world is worth 8k, you should not be allowed or able to spend that much
 
Was probably the kid I played the other day with my mate that called his team 'Fingerbang FC' and kept calling all his players niggers.
 
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