I can't know if I was right or not, and its pretty cynical, but in this other case from the article we have Angry Birds with an average player age of 5 years old using deceptive in-game currencies and gambling/behaviourist inspired design practices to make thousands of dollars off of certain young high risk players.
Every year that goes by I'm shocked this sort of thing continues to be legal
Then you had (still have) Mac Donald and their monopoly game.
And you had (and still have) the TV games where you could send a text, and before that call, for a chance to win, with ads during kids show. And before that, you could send a letter.
In France we had a sweet called "mistral gagnant", which you bought because if the sweet was a winner, you'd get another one for free.
I'm pretty sure things existed way, way, before that, I'm just not aware of it.
Similar to Pokemon, you at least got something tangible. Even if MtG or Pokemon shutdown tomorrow, you can still play with your cards until you die, and then your kids can play with them.
Or you can sell them to other kids or collectors.
> Then you have Mac Donald and their monopoly game.
Also, here you got a tangible benefit (you got fed).
This is the key difference versus paying for Ninja Wars, or even for non-pay2win-stuff like "skins". The second the game servers get shut down is also the second your collection becomes worthless. And if you're done with the game you can't even sell on your stuff to someone else.
In the example of the Magic card, those cards had no value for a human being, biologically speaking. We gave them value. You could as well write the card text on a piece of paper and play it the same way.
The fact they are tangible pieces of paper doesn't erase the gambling-for-children aspect. Nor does it give them any more real value than a video game bonus. They have the value we estimate in our heads.
You give for example a low value to a LoL skin. But to a player that spends hours a day on it, and use it as a central platform for social interactions and fun, the skin has an impact, and for a long time.
I played dota for a years, I never bough a skin, but when I won one, I sure used it.
Not sure how it is nowadays, but on the other hand, from what I read, you just buy whatever deck you want directly instead of going through boosters.
To me, it seems like McDonald's food that's physical but lasts a short time is about as tangible as a skin that's not physical but you can use for years.
Well... at least with McD there is a natural limit on how much one can spend on gambling Monopoly (=how much you can eat before having to barf). With most digital goods, there is no such limit, and to make it psychologically worse, there is nothing actually "representing" what you got for your money - it's all numbers and code that depends on a central server.
But I just don't know why people are all up in arms about these things now when random card packs and such were a thing a while ago.
In other words, you're not paying for the game, your paying to collect cards. I never personally understood it but watched friends, family, and co-workers spent $2k-$5k on cards back in the mid 90s.
That seems different to me in some subtle way from in-game purchases in video games.
Agreed, and just wanted to add that it's surprising just how many adults don't seem have these mechanisms. Perhaps a form of learned helplessness by being subjected to this kind of thing from childhood?
It was same money suck and I don't see how its precedence make anything better.
But that doesn't detract from the previous commenter's point: gambling aimed at children has always been there. Internet is merely an amplifier here.
All those positive things can be learned in ways that do not require kids to play super expensive pay to win game.
I too am shocked that this sort of stuff is not looked at closer since I work in the adult video gaming industry and I can see how strict the laws in some countries are around how we CAN NOT ABSOLUTELY have any imagery that could appeal to children. I think it's fair and this sort of games should get regulated too.
And this was all before the Internet boom and the terrible ad-tech hell we find ourselves in.
Anyway, kudos to your high school.
Which still doesn't change anything about them being (serious) problems. It just means that people who don't have a clue don't have a clue.
> There are several things that make "problems" more or less problematic, one of which being hyper-focus on negatives, which is why it's relevant.
No, whether anyone is paying attention to a problem has zero influence on how big a problem it is.
Sure, they're not 100% evil, heck Hitler was a pretty swell guy with his close friends too, but at this point they should be guilty until proven innocent, not the other way around.
The deluge of anti-fb comments is the public finally having enough of their crap, so you should get used to it.
This is the trap I'm talking about. Instead of "public" what you mean are "commenters" and "writers". Assuming that is an accurate representation of the public is folly. As has become clear so many times recently, and is especially visible in election results, the loud public and the general public are often not of the same mind.
They'll just use whatever is easiest and tickles their fancy.
How does that make sense? If the action Facebook committed was somehow morally reprehensible, but legal?
Any project where you detect a vulnerable person so you can protect them, or detect an evildoer so you can block them, you can joke about the fact there's money to be made by doing the reverse. And those jokes would look pretty bad taken out of context, even though you were never seriously considering them.
Don't mix law and morality. Attempts to do so gave us sharia law, let that be a cautionary tale.
It's bad enough to exploit adults, but kids who literally do not understand the concept of money?! Or doing the internet equivalent of the "snacks display" right besides the supermarket cash register line - make the kids throw tantrums at their parents so that they put up cash. Vile!
I can understand if a firm sends out some product that depreciates like a lollipop, they might suffer an actual loss if the purchase was done by a kid.
But in this case it's hard to see anything reasonable about how FB has behaved. Clearly the kids don't want to be spending hundreds of their parents' dollars.
It's really well polished and has a lot of other very useful QoL features, such has direct transfers based on cellphone numbers, which allow you to instantly pay dinner debts to your friends. I am surprised to hear it doesn't exist outside pt.
In this case sealing was clearly not in the public interest, at the very least it would have alerted parents, prevented more abuse and increased public awareness of a growing toxic culture.
This would have have produced better outcomes for all parties, including Facebook and their employees by forcing a rethink of their business practices and processes.
What could possibly be more harmful than what has already been released? It's a bit mind-boggling.
Confidentiality agreements always keep these kinds of things from coming to light, merely because the cost of breaking them is too damned high.
> Facebook often failed to send receipts for these purchases, and links on the company’s website to dispute charges frequently failed to work, according to court records.
So if you can't get a refund from Facebook, contact your financial institution and dispute the charges through them. There's no guarantee of success, but you probably have a better shot going that route.