FTC investigating whether Blizzard did break the law.
Blizzard’s refund refusal has backfired: the company is now being investigated over its policy
We reported earlier this week that Blizzard was being investigated over its Diablo 3 refund policy, because the studio had refused refund requests from Korean players. It was found the studio conflicted with Korean Law – which states refunds can be issued within seven days of purchase provided the issue isn’t consumer-caused – and now the FTC is stepping up its investigation.
The Korea Times newspaper said the FTC is suspected of violating Korea’s electronic commerce and commercial contracts. The organization raided the studio’s Seoul office this Monday and documents related to the case, and to determine if the company did break Korean law.
Issues continue to plague Diablo 3 and Blizzard, with server issues and hacking reports and customer outrage of the need for an always-on internet connection prompting anger. The Korean players requesting refunds came around the time Chinese players obtained illegal copies of the game and logged in to Korean servers via proxy. Consequently, server’s went down in Korea and other regions.
However, despite the issue, Diablo 3 has officially sold 6.3 million copies and set records such as the most pre-ordered PC game on Amazon ever. The game is sold out on the online retailer, and will be available from June 8. That’s assuming it doesn’t go out of stock as soon as it re-arrives.
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The FTC said Blizzard refusing refunds made it disadvantageous to customers, who effectively are the subject of a no-way-back policy by Blizzard. The FTC also revealed it has received lots of complaints regarding the title.
It said Blizzard is also being investigated for not preparing for the volume of players at launch (this is the studio that’s been running World of Warcraft for a decade). Some investigators, according to The Korea Times, expect Blizzard to be forced to refund customers requesting money back. Whether all players are entitled to do so is unknown.
Blizzard has since made numerous posts on the Diablo 3 official forums saying issues are continually being monitored, accounts are not being hacked outside of obtaining log-in details, and to get in touch immediately if an account has been stolen.
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