Eve Online Gamer Loses $19K USD Buying Virtual Currency
January 15, 2009 at 10:11 pm by srfto
Selling and buying game currency is a huge market now a days and the whole concept is based on trust. Buyer pays for the goods and sellers delivers the items. Although currency sellers are violating the game publisher’s terms of agreement, gamers continue even though they know the risks.
Eve Online is one of the few MMOs that recognizes there is currently no way of regulating players from engaging the secondary market. Eve Online offers a few legitimate ways of transferring their real life money into the game. Eve time cards/codes can be converted into ISK (Eve’s currency) . They provide a secure platform for players to trade trade time cards and ISK with out any risks, and more recently a way to turn game time into an item that can be sold on the open market in-game. For some players, it’s their way of paying for their subscription, for others it enables them to buy a faction of a ship, items or earn a profit in real life.
But… a gamer from Denmark learned the lesson the hard way after he bought an excessive amount of game currency for EvE Online from Ownyourgame (currency seller company). It was reported that he paid 100,000 Danish Krones (the rough equivalent of 13,500 Euros or USD 19,000) to Ownyourgame over a three month period and never received any of the ISK (EvE Online currency). I wonder what led him to making a second purchase when his first order was not fulfilled.
He asked his bank provider (Visa) to charge back the money into his debit card. Visa told him it is not their problem and will not charge back the money to his card. Facing a $19,000 loss, he took the matter to court and filed against Visa for not reimbursing his money back into his debit card. Visa’s response to the court was “they are not responsible for this is because he used Paypal to pay for the items and not the debit card“. They explained that they already finish their part of the transaction which is charging to Paypal for electronic currency. Paypal gave him the credit that he charged on his debit card so Paypal and Visa has fulfilled their part of the agreement. Now if Paypal did not give him credit in the account then Visa will take action, but this was not the case. The verdict (in Danish, an unofficial translation can be found on the Eve forums.) favored towards Visa after examining that he used Paypal to buy the ISK and after Visa showed the Ownyourgame site has no Visa logo which shows the gamer did paid with Paypal.
The Ownyourgame.com has been shutdown or no longer exists. Details are unknown but you can find their site on the Internet Archives. Trying to sue these companies are difficult and merely a waste of time. Half of them are incorporated in save Havens where the government will care less of what happens. If you buy from these companies expect some deals to go wrong and you will lose your money. Best way is to just not buy game currency in the first place or if you really have to, don’t drop $19,000 on it.