Europe Wants To Regulate Free-To-Play Games

The European Commission is holding talks with member state authorities and companies such as Google and Apple in order to reach an agreement to enforce stronger regulations on free-to-play games.

The European Union's executive body is concerned that a substantial number of free-to-play games are marketed as free but dupe customers into purchasing expensive in-app content. It can be argued that adults should be held responsible for their decisions, but the EU believes that children "particularly vulnerable" to such systems.

The European Commission has outlined the four consumer-raised issues that will be discussed in detail at the meeting:

• Games advertised as "free" should not mislead consumers about the true costs involved;
• Games should not contain direct exhortations to children to buy items in a game or to persuade an adult to buy items for them;
• Consumers should be adequately informed about the payment arrangements and purchases should not be debited through default settings without consumers' explicit consent;
• Traders should provide an email address so that consumers can contact them in case of queries or complaints.

Through the meeting, the European Commission aims to "reach a common understanding with industry," before it takes "any necessary action" to protect European customers.

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Oh please!!!

Fuck off. Yeah you're damn right adults should be held accountable for the decisions they make & WTF would a kid have a fucking credit card for?!!!! Business is business. If you agree to guy something then you have no one to blame but yourself unless the "product" was not delivered or not what was promised.

hmmm

If you notice, half the accounts you use on games now, the credit card information is stored so that the next purchase is a click away. The kid doesn't have to have the number. They get a parent to punch in the card once, but the parent neglected to read the 40 page T.O.S.

Excellent

This is great stuff, I hope it works out. The microtransaction horror needs to be quelled. Anyone arguing against this is an inhuman capitalist, as none of this will actually hinder companies from doing anything but ethical business. Unless you support F2P designs that all but force people to pay, deceptive concepts to get children to press 'buy' or otherwise support designs which trick, fool, encourage or blindside people to get them to pay cash there is NO reason to do anything but rejoice with this news. The only 'things' (I refuse to call them people) which will be upset by this news are those who support corporations over human beings, because this is just action to calm companies down from their economic cannibalism. There is no reason to be against this unless you're against human beings and for corporations.

Whats this about corporations

Whats this about corporations being money hungry? You do know these corporations can't be run without "humans" who have mortgages on their homes, and hungry children who eat their wallets. Of course they will nickle and dime every cent they can to afford everything in life. Even a new mortgage on a third house. So shuuush when it comes to corporate nonsense. If you were in their position you would do the same if you could get away with it.

I agree with you that

I agree with you that corporations are run by humans, but like you pointed out some have morgages to pay on their third house. The problem is that in large companies only a handfull of people share in the massive proffit. They get 10,20,50 Million a year, where the common employee at the same company makes like 40K a year. We all would sell out if we had the chance, but while we do not all have that chance, we will all want fair and equal treatment.

That's what spankings are for

That's what spankings are for, and a life lesson. Smartphones and such devices that incoporate these things have parental settings, if the parents fail to take the proper precautions it's as much their fault as the kids. Companies shouldn't have to pay for peoples stupidity, such as yours All like minded people and lawyers destroy free countries..

hmmm

Obviously you have never had to take care of a household. It is impossible to be ontop of everything 100 percent of the time. This isn't about freedom. This is about keeping companies from ripping people off. Companies are the ones with too much power. Companies are the ones who has started nearly every war since world war 2. Why would you be for a program that once has credit card information purchases are as easy as point and click. That is a fucking retarded system.

an example

When you run a house, you aren't just taking care of yourself, your training other individuals. Not only do you brush your own teeth you have to make sure everyone in the house brushes their teeth. It is rediculous to expect parents to read the fine print on every app kids install on their phones and computers. I mean how often do you read the TOS on your own device much less another persons. How often do you spend 30 minutes going through every aspect of a program installed on a device you don't even use. This is exploited every day. If you have to punch in a code everytime your kids want to install a program you aren't gonna be able to dress yourself if you want your kids to have proper parenting and a roof over their heads.

subject

try out 10 hours a day taken out for going to and from work. Then try 8 hours needed for sleep. That is already 19 hours. You do the rest of the math. You will understand once you grow out of your teens. Wouldn't be surprised if you aren't just upset you won't be able to spend your parents money as easily

The funny thing about this

The funny thing about this actually is that he is the perfect example to why Free 2 Play games make so much money. He goes to School and beats off then comes home and stresses out his parents to enter their credit card info in his account so he leaves them alone. Then he spends spends spends without caring that the money he so freely spends his parents probably had to clean the CEO bathrooms for hours, and with the $5 an hour they get paid to feed and clothe and give him a roof. He thinks it should go back to the same company for giving him a digital item that has no real value or possibility to be re-sold. Then he will be the first to complain about his lazy ass parents for not giving him $500 a month allowence he has to do nothing for. Instead him and many people like him then throw a fit when they are asked to bring out the garbage or do the dishes.

Yeah so true, poor Europeans

Yeah so true, poor Europeans with their social systems. Oh no, I do not have to amputate my foot because my minimum wage job pays me just enough to pay my bills. Even though I have a Phd and spend $70K to get it.... yeah Europeans are not free, they have good healthcare, social backup systems, Free education and Police that can not do as they wish.... yeah, Europe is a terrible place, all hale the US of A

Depends on the Developer and the Publisher

I would say this is a tricky thing. Some games really do well with free to play without unbalancing the game like visual styles to make your character/pets/mounts look different than the rest. I think this is totally acceptable for a free to play game. Problems are usually more with balancing influencing things like better upgrading chances or better enchantments. These are things which, if not balanced properly, will divide the free to play community and the pay to play community. EXP stuff is something completely else. They are intended for those who don't have a lot of time but don't want to play catch up with their friends who simply have more time to play. Obviously you have people who use them just to be faster than the rest but this isn't a balancing problem. It's just human superiority; these people want to be faster than all the other people. The moment you put 2 people on uneven terms, this is a problem. The one with the disatvantage is the one who usually leaves the game first and i think this is a loss to the game, the publisher and the developer, because even a non paying user adds to the atmosphere of the game. They are like neighbours. If you live in a nice neighbourhood and someone leaves and no one will fill up this space, the area will feel empty and people become unhappy and more people willleave until the area is empty. That is usually the time when a mmo shuts down, because the paying customers weren't just enough to keep the gamegoing. The other thing are the in app purchases on mobile games. They can be quite annoying/tempting/misleading. My nephew plays on my sisters phone Angry Birds and this game is just swarming with buttons to push. Good thing is actually that android actually has the standard setting that you have to log in with you google account first to do the purchase, unless set differently by the phone user. iOS i believe is a bit mor difficult, because you are always logged in with your apple id, so the in app purchase is just silent and potentially deadly for your phone/credit card bill. Regulating the whole market will be difficult and maybe not even entirely good, because some good games might lose this fight, even though they might not deserve it.

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