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Remove this from TOS

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Mick, Jun 13, 2019.

  1. Mick

    Mick Member

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    We recently had a perma-ban of a top player in this game, which, as the devs have admitted, was a screw-up. The first reference there was to the TOS, which contains the following clause:

    7. Service Availability and Termination

    a) You acknowledge that:

    ii) AutoAttack Games has absolute and sole discretion to immediately terminate or restrict access to the Services, or any portion of the Services, including any and all Accounts, at any time, for any reason, without Notice and without liability to you;

    In other words, at the moment, the developers are allowed to permanently ban you from the game without reason or explanation. I won't go into the judicial part of this, whether it is even allowed to take away something someone has bought from you without reason.

    You might say, this is judicial and the moderators won't in practice ban anyone without reason, but if that is true, that is only more reason to remove this article, since it only scares people for something that won't be done.

    Another reason to remove this article is the response of the devs to their perma-ban of the player:

    My request would be to either completely remove article 7aii from the TOS, or adjust it so that you cannot be banned 'at any time, for any reason, without Notice and without liability to you', but only for violating the code of conduct in a severe way, or misbehaving in another way so that there is no more option than to terminate you from the service.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2019
  2. jitsuc4

    jitsuc4 Moderator

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    Given the recent incident, your concern is very understandable. The terms sound very harsh and you're right that they reserve all rights to actions being taken, including banning someone.

    But note that this part of the terms of service is necessary, since it covers any cases that cannot be stated explicitly in the terms. Those might include losing an account due to some bug or shutting down the game due to legal reasons, and as a consequence all accounts would have to be terminated as well. Restricting access to the Service might include any downtime due to server issues etc.

    Also note that it is pretty common in any online service, including most (if not all?) games, even if the wording may differ, e.g.

    Blizzard
    Rockstar Games
    PUBG
    LoL

    And regarding this part, note that you don't buy any game (or software for that matter), you only buy a license to use it, sometimes in some restricted way, e.g. you can't modify or reverse engineer said software.

    And like Lisk already pointed out in the Discord, going forward they're working on coming up with a more transparent code of conduct to guide everything.
     
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  3. Mick

    Mick Member

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    I understand part of this reasoning, you don't want to be unable to terminate accounts in circumstances which you can't foresee now. But with the current clause, it's a very rough remedy. Because by writing it down like this, you also keep the options open to ban for personal reasons, for fun, for having an account with starts with the letter R or any reason you can think of.

    I don't think it's impossible that you can write an article in the ToS that both keeps the option open for any unforseeable, but reasonable reasons in the future and still not make it so that anyone can be terminated from the service for the silliest reasons.

    I like the one LoL has for example:

    This one made it clear that any ban at least has to be upon a violations or in the best interest of the community, Riot Services or anyone else involved, but does not leave the door open for any 'unjustified' ways of banning.
     
  4. SiegeMentality

    SiegeMentality Member

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    Oh, yawn...

    In the US, there are a number of states that have what is known as At Will employment. This means, at any time without cause, a worker can be fired without explanation. It does not mean that the now unemployed worker cannot hire a lawyer and sue the company for wrongful termination, but their case must be rock solid to challenge wrongful termination in an At Will state.

    Consider this clause an At Will termination of services, which is perfectly legal. This covers Auto Attack's ass if they find someone is doing something exceptionally stupid and they don't want to broadcast what kind of stupidity it was.

    In the big scheme of things, when you buy a game you may think they owe you a lifetime of enjoyment, but they don't. Games die. Companies fold. Life goes on. You purchased a game and got what you paid for. Consider every day you log in and play a few rounds as a gift.
     
  5. Mick

    Mick Member

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    I don't see the point of your post? You are first arguing that their ToS is legal, which, as I said in my first point I don't question. Then you say I think companies owe me a lifetime of enjoyment, when I specifically state that there can be unforeseen reasons to terminate the service in the future (for example they go bankrupt), but that they could rephrase their ToS so that all such options are still included, but not excessive things like banning for fun or for personal revenge.
     
  6. SiegeMentality

    SiegeMentality Member

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    A company is in business to make a profit. Companies stop making profit when they alienate their customers. Bans for personal revenge, fun, and arbitrary reasons alienate customers.

    I think you're confusing a legitimate company with a modder.
     
  7. Mick

    Mick Member

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    So in your reasoning, there would be no reason for the company to write the ToS in such way that those things are included, because they won't do it anyway? And they might only lose potential customers because a clause like this might scare them off?

    Glad to see we agree that it's better to change this clause then.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2019
  8. SiegeMentality

    SiegeMentality Member

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    The only thing I will agree to in this entire thread is that you sound like a pouty child that didn't get his way. You should probably walk away from this thread now.
     
  9. Mick

    Mick Member

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    :D

    Edit: One more question about the Code of Conduct which is to be developed in the 4th season. What is the value of that Code if the ToS still says your account can be terminated for any reason at any time? Would it not be better if the Code of Conduct and ToS go together?

    Let me make a new proposal which would keep your freedom in terminating accounts, but also gives players a bit of security (i.e. one that benefits both sides):

    In this way, you still have the power to terminate accounts for any reasons you can't foresee, but the public also has the power to check if the bans are justified, which they don't now (obviously this can be rephrased better or sharper, since I'm not a native English speaker).
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2019
  10. Themryon

    Themryon Member

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    @Mick Can you elaborate a bit more what happened and why they screwed up? And is that player back unbanned?
     
  11. Mick

    Mick Member

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    Yeah, I won't go too much into that, because I don't want it to be a discussion about that ban, but I can say why it made me post this topic.

    The player got perma-banned and a few days later he wanted to log in and noticed he couldn't anymore because of that. He did not know why, and since he was banned on all platforms (game, discord, forum) he could not appeal or ask what the reason was. The last thing that happened (I believe) was that this player and Jules had a quarrel on Jules' private Twitch.

    That's when he told others about his ban and that he did not know why, so they started questioning about it on discord, mainly asking what the reason precisely was (e.g. to be sure it was not because of personal revenge or something). The developers responded with something like "it was more than just being toxic, but we won't go into specific cases".

    After a big uproar the developers/moderators had a discussion again about the ban, after which they decided to lift the perma-ban, but make it a final warning instead, because it was not clear you could get banned in-game for doing things outside of game etc, and they also promised to make a Code of Conduct, so both moderators and players know what to expect in this regard.

    The thing that worried me after this is that the player only got unbanned after the public started to make waves about it. If the player was not known or did not know his way to others, he would probably still be banned. And even after asking for it many times, it was very hard for the developers to give a reason, instead they preferred to keep their reasons to themselves. I still don't know what lead them to the ban, even though I followed it all.

    That's why I want to make sure that in the future you can always ask for a reason, and it should be answered in such a way that the ban is understandable (this does not mean you have to agree).

    It will also show, in my opinion, whether the promises to make it better were real, and followed up by making a real change in the official rules, or will only stay with an intention.
     
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  12. Themryon

    Themryon Member

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    Thanks Mick. That is very clear.
     
  13. Respawnkarre

    Respawnkarre Member

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    Wouldn't be best like in classic votekick and voteban?
    More democray!
     
  14. Mick

    Mick Member

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    I will retract this request and find another game to play. The user has been perma-banned anyway later for trying to join a PTR game (twice) when he was already online on the PTR with a friend and the developers asked people to join (and I was luckily in there so I could see it myself). He did not say a word or anything, just tried to join. It sounds crazy, but it is true.

    I am not going to bother when the will is obviously not there to be fair.
     
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