Apple hit with class-action suit over iPhone in-app game currency purchases

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  • Reply 81 of 127
    jupiteronejupiterone Posts: 1,564member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post


    Kids can run up a large phone bill even more easily. Do parents sue the phone companies?



    I remember many many years ago hearing my parents talking downstairs.



    Dad: "Who's calling State College, PA so many times?"

    Mom: "What's the number?"

    Dad: "1-234-5678"

    Mom: "DAVID!!!???"



  • Reply 82 of 127
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,729member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jmillermcp View Post


    Yes. Yes I do. Plus I'm "tech savvy" which is all the more reason why I would never give my kids a password that protects my credit card because I know the consequences. That's one of the problems with this country these days, parents don't have time to be parents. They just say "go sit in front of <insert some tech or activity> and stop bothering me".



    Really? That's one of the problems with this country? I do have time to parent and love my kids above and beyond but I have no problem admitting they can and frequently do drive me nuts. I am tech savvy. My kids have access to my password. My kids can borrow my laptop any time and they know the password. My kids do not buy without asking (they have done once or twice and I told them never to do so again). But my kids are no angels. Which just to show we all have different parenting styles. What I do know is if anyone claims to have all the answers they don't have kids.
  • Reply 83 of 127
    technotechno Posts: 737member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by alandail View Post


    why are parents giving their kids a password that is tied to a credit card? You can't sue another company for your having such poor parenting skills. My kids have to come to me to make an app store purchase with my credit card.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Radjin View Post


    Maybe a parent should take a little responsibility with what their young children are doing? I don't just turn my child lose with a net connected device without taking precautions. Any net connected device. Kids will be kids, and they will explore every opportunity that exist. It's a good thing, they are sponges soaking up every experience. As parents we must be ever diligent that they do not get into trouble. I wonder if these same parents allow their young children to explore unattended the under sink storage as well, you know, where the poisons are kept?



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by msantti View Post


    Bad parenting now necessitates class action lawsuits.



    I am suing because I cannot control my kids.



    This exact issue has happened to me. It had nothing to do with "bad parenting". My 7 year old does not have my password. He came up to me to ask me to install a free game. Pretty sure it was City Story or something like that. My son turned away as I input my password. I handed him the iPod when I was done. He waited for it to finish downloading. He then began playing it. A week or two later I get several invoice/receipts from Apple, showing multiple In-App purchases amounting to more than $40. I contacted Apple and they refunded the first purchase which was $4.99. The rest they said they would not reimburse. I demanded to know how this "free" app was charging me. It had nothing to do with my son knowing my password, which he did not. It was because after I put in the iTunes password to download the "free" app, there is a window of 15 minutes where no password is need for purchases. We did not know this and my son was pushing the buttons in the game. He had no idea he was actually spending real money.



    Nothing to do with bad parenting.
  • Reply 84 of 127
    technotechno Posts: 737member
    All of you going on about bad parenting are misreading this whole thing. He did not give his password to the child. It has nothing to do with parenting at all. It was a design flaw that Apple later recognized and addressed in an update



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post




    The lawsuit notes that Apple has since addressed the issue by requiring a password for in-app purchases. Previously, once users entered their password to download an application, iOS offered a 15-minute window during which additional purchases could be made without entering the password.




  • Reply 85 of 127
    technotechno Posts: 737member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by q2h View Post


    Far be it from me to suggest Americans have and more of their rights taken away from them, but at this point, would it really be such a bad idea to require a license to be a parent? You know, like a marriage license is required to get married.. Only, the parent license will test you to make sure you're not just flooding the population with another mouth-breathing moron that'll screw up the system for the rest of us?



    Seriously though.. If you don't take the time to understand that giving a child an adults device without using or even looking into parental controls could have undesired effects then it's your own fault. Suing Apple is a short term solution to a long term problem; bad parenting. Educate yourself before you go giving your kids a device that you have no idea what it's capable of.



    It is the morons misunderstanding the issue that are the problem
  • Reply 86 of 127
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,729member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Chris_CA View Post


    Only because you tell them they have to ask you. (good kids).

    However, if they have the password, the only thing that stops them from making purchases is their conscience.



    Well - that and the wrath of their father

    Quote:

    Really? They download that many apps?



    You have no idea

    Quote:

    So even you are not positive?



    I scan every itunes receipt and by now I trust my kids. But I'm honest - I would never put it past them to claim they 'accidentally' purchased something. If they have a gift card I put it in and as the bad dad I clearly am I don't hesitate using a credit or two for my own purchases - so it all evens out.

    Quote:

    Why not simply give them their own iTunes account with no credit card linked?

    They can get all the free apps they want but with no CC linked, even accidental in-app purchases could not be made.



    Like I mentioned earlier - if you all share one account you are allowed to download several copies of an app. Say one of them buys the Sims and makes a deal with the other one they pay half. If my wife and I like it too, we all pay a quarter. Ditto music, though there is less overlap there.



    Ideally - and this would perhaps increase mobileme take-up, apple would let all members of a family account share purchases but using different passwords.
  • Reply 87 of 127
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by alandail View Post


    why are parents giving their kids a password that is tied to a credit card? You can't sue another company for your having such poor parenting skills. My kids have to come to me to make an app store purchase with my credit card.



    With my daughter for her iPhone, she doesn't have access to a credit card *at all*. She has her own account which she fills using iTunes Store prepaid cards. Oh, and the "they use my computer" reason isn't an excuse - just create a different user, whether MacOS or Microsoft Windows



    Oh, and yes, the phone companies make it really easy to rack up big bills. For all of those who hate AT&T, they do have a service to upgrade your service to plans which would cover the increased usage.



    Oh, and MMS messages are now separate from SMS messages now on the cheapest plans. Found that out after I sent a couple of contacts from my iPhone to the Windows Phone 6.5 phone I got in January, $0.30 a pop... The 1000 message plan includes MMS with SMS, although my iPhones were grandfathered in.
  • Reply 88 of 127
    hill60hill60 Posts: 6,992member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post


    I agree on all points. The false argument a game is 'free' when it has costs built in once bought is the key to this I think.



    Those games should not be included in the free games section. Apple could easily make a definition of a 'free' game or app that stated it may contain ads but no in app sales. Even an upgrade from a light to a full version should not be from within a 'free app' rather an ad would state it has to be 'purchased from the non-free section.



    Those apps or games that use the business model 'give it for free' and 'make the money from add ons' is perfectly legitimate but it should not masquerade as free, especially when targeted at kids.



    Having said that parents still need to take responsibility here and not resort to suing Apple.



    When checking the game your child is downloading (unless you don't care) it is quite easy to see "Most Popular in App Purchases", which indicates a game has in App purchases, maybe the person responsible for the credit card should check before handing out the password that gives access to their money.



    In the early nineties console games came with helplines that were premium numbers with a disclaimer advising to ask for the account holders permission before calling, as far as I know Sega never had to face a class action over phone bills run up by children.
  • Reply 89 of 127
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by alandail View Post


    why are parents giving their kids a password that is tied to a credit card? You can't sue another company for your having such poor parenting skills. My kids have to come to me to make an app store purchase with my credit card.



    I think you're being a little short sighted and offensive by attributing this issue to bad parenting.
  • Reply 90 of 127
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,953member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jmillermcp View Post


    The App Store is "not safe"? How exactly is that? At least with Apple, I know who I'm buying from unlike Amazon where sometimes it's through them (so I get free shipping) and sometimes it's not and hope the 3rd party is reputable.



    No, you can tell who is selling it. You might miss it if you're not paying attention, but it's not hidden. Below the price:



    "In Stock.

    Ships from and sold by Amazon.com."



    "In Stock.

    Ships from and sold by (third party name here)."



    There is a similar line if it's fulfilled by Amazon.



    If it's not fulfilled by Amazon, you'll also see the "ships from and sold by" line right above the "add to cart" button on the product description page.
  • Reply 91 of 127
    hill60hill60 Posts: 6,992member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by techno View Post


    This exact issue has happened to me. It had nothing to do with "bad parenting". My 7 year old does not have my password. He came up to me to ask me to install a free game. Pretty sure it was City Story or something like that. My son turned away as I input my password. I handed him the iPod when I was done. He waited for it to finish downloading. He then began playing it. A week or two later I get several invoice/receipts from Apple, showing multiple In-App purchases amounting to more than $40. I contacted Apple and they refunded the first purchase which was $4.99. The rest they said they would not reimburse. I demanded to know how this "free" app was charging me. It had nothing to do with my son knowing my password, which he did not. It was because after I put in the iTunes password to download the "free" app, there is a window of 15 minutes where no password is need for purchases. We did not know this and my son was pushing the buttons in the game. He had no idea he was actually spending real money.



    Nothing to do with bad parenting.



    So how did he make the later purchases???



    ...hmmm?



    Anything I give to kids is linked to a prepaid iTunes card, just like cellphones, prepaid.



    What that did was taught them the value of money, they learnt how to live within limits.



    Something a lot of people could use a lesson in.
  • Reply 92 of 127
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by techno View Post


    All of you going on about bad parenting are misreading this whole thing. He did not give his password to the child. It has nothing to do with parenting at all. It was a design flaw that Apple later recognized and addressed in an update



    You stopped reading the rest apparently...



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Apple Insider


    "Because the passwords now required for purchases of Game Currency are the same passwords required for any Apple purchase, minors aware of such password may purchase Game Currency without authorization from their parents for that purchase," the lawsuit reads.



    Again, not only are In App purchases password protected but you can also use the built-in parental restrictions to disable the purchases whether they know the password or not.
  • Reply 93 of 127
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post


    No, you can tell who is selling it. You might miss it if you're not paying attention, but it's not hidden. Below the price:



    "In Stock.

    Ships from and sold by Amazon.com."



    "In Stock.

    Ships from and sold by (third party name here)."



    There is a similar line if it's fulfilled by Amazon.



    If it's not fulfilled by Amazon, you'll also see the "ships from and sold by" line right above the "add to cart" button on the product description page.



    Never said it was hidden. I said I didn't "know" who was selling it. I have no idea who <insert 3rd party> is.
  • Reply 94 of 127
    djsherlydjsherly Posts: 1,031member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jmillermcp View Post


    You stopped reading the rest apparently....



    and the immediately prior paragraph which reads:



    But Meguerian believes that Apple's previous policy allowed the company to "pocket millions of dollars" from unauthorized transactions. And even the revised password policy found in iOS 4.3 isn't enough, he argued.



    Sounds to me like he's suing over past behavior and the perceived inadequate response.



    Either way, something like this I would just take on the chin and move on. And it would appear that many people posting about poor parenting skills probably don't have children themselves. Not everyone who has has these ithings bothers to spend the time reading all the t&cs, or to endlessly argue the merits of the shape of the battery indicator in an os update. The vast majority of people have never even heard of apple insider, so you can't expect every iOS user to have your knowledge of the device and all its options know.



    I certainly don't consider myself a luddite but today I learned you can turn off in app purchases. But neither do I give my password to my kids.
  • Reply 95 of 127
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,953member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jmillermcp View Post


    Never said it was hidden. I said I didn't "know" who was selling it. I have no idea who <insert 3rd party> is.



    OK, I had the impression that it was about not knowing whether an item wasn't being sold by Amazon. At least it's relatively easy to avoid buying from third parties. I usually either check their reputation or look elsewhere.
  • Reply 96 of 127
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,953member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jmillermcp View Post


    Never said it was hidden. I said I didn't "know" who was selling it. I have no idea who <insert 3rd party> is.



    OK, I had the impression that it was about not knowing whether an item wasn't being sold by Amazon. At least it's relatively easy to avoid buying from third parties. I usually either check their reputation or look elsewhere. I've heard Amazon's conflict resolution system is good, but I haven't needed it.
  • Reply 97 of 127
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by djsherly View Post


    and the immediately prior paragraph which reads:



    But Meguerian believes that Apple's previous policy allowed the company to "pocket millions of dollars" from unauthorized transactions. And even the revised password policy found in iOS 4.3 isn't enough, he argued.



    Sounds to me like he's suing over past behavior and the perceived inadequate response.



    Either way, something like this I would just take on the chin and move on. And it would appear that many people posting about poor parenting skills probably don't have children themselves. Not everyone who has has these ithings bothers to spend the time reading all the t&cs, or to endlessly argue the merits of the shape of the battery indicator in an os update. The vast majority of people have never even heard of apple insider, so you can't expect every iOS user to have your knowledge of the device and all its options know.



    I certainly don't consider myself a luddite but today I learned you can turn off in app purchases. But neither do I give my password to my kids.





    And that's where this lawsuit gets harder to defend.



    1. Plaintiff knowingly gave iTunes password to minors.

    2. Apple implemented a requirement to input password for each In App purchase.

    3. Apple implemented parental controls to completely disable In App purchases.

    4. Apple placed a banner at the top of each App that allows purchases called "Top In App Purchases".

    5. Plaintiff is guessing that Apple has made millions (Apple only gets 30%) by assuming other parents were as negligent.



    I'm sorry but the guy who tried to slap Apple with a class-action for his iPad overheating after leaving it in the hot sun had a better chance of winning...and he didn't. So this moron is spending how much to reclaim $200?
  • Reply 98 of 127
    q2hq2h Posts: 18member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by techno View Post


    It is the morons misunderstanding the issue that are the problem



    Are you really implying that one has nothing to do with the other and calling me a moron? If so, you're either a victim yourself, or a victim sympathizer.. and by victim, I mean moron.
  • Reply 99 of 127
    alandailalandail Posts: 757member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by techno View Post


    This exact issue has happened to me. It had nothing to do with "bad parenting". My 7 year old does not have my password. He came up to me to ask me to install a free game. Pretty sure it was City Story or something like that. My son turned away as I input my password. I handed him the iPod when I was done. He waited for it to finish downloading. He then began playing it. A week or two later I get several invoice/receipts from Apple, showing multiple In-App purchases amounting to more than $40. I contacted Apple and they refunded the first purchase which was $4.99. The rest they said they would not reimburse. I demanded to know how this "free" app was charging me. It had nothing to do with my son knowing my password, which he did not. It was because after I put in the iTunes password to download the "free" app, there is a window of 15 minutes where no password is need for purchases. We did not know this and my son was pushing the buttons in the game. He had no idea he was actually spending real money.



    Nothing to do with bad parenting.



    your situation can't happen anymore. Apple changed the way it works because people were having your problem. Now you have to sign in again to make an in app purchase. Which is what the lawsuit is about. Parents gave their children their password, the children used that password. Somehow this parent thinks they should blame Apple.
  • Reply 100 of 127
    veblenveblen Posts: 201member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by techno View Post


    This exact issue has happened to me. It had nothing to do with "bad parenting". My 7 year old does not have my password. He came up to me to ask me to install a free game. Pretty sure it was City Story or something like that. My son turned away as I input my password. I handed him the iPod when I was done. He waited for it to finish downloading. He then began playing it. A week or two later I get several invoice/receipts from Apple, showing multiple In-App purchases amounting to more than $40. I contacted Apple and they refunded the first purchase which was $4.99. The rest they said they would not reimburse. I demanded to know how this "free" app was charging me. It had nothing to do with my son knowing my password, which he did not. It was because after I put in the iTunes password to download the "free" app, there is a window of 15 minutes where no password is need for purchases. We did not know this and my son was pushing the buttons in the game. He had no idea he was actually spending real money.



    Nothing to do with bad parenting.



    I was lucky enough to find out about the 15 minute rule on password authentication before my kids made any in app purchases. The only reason I knew about the "feature" was that I frequent sites like this one. As soon as I read about it I disabled in app purchases on all 6 of our iOS devices. I think my not getting charged by my 5 year old randomly clicking on buttons just after I downloaded a kids game was just luck. Up to my reading articles on Apple rumor and fan sites I had assumed that my kids would be prompted for a password each time. Before I knew about the 15 rule I had no reason to completely disable in app purchases because I thought my children would be prompted for authentication.
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