No, EA Won’t Ban You On Origin If You Ask For A Refund For SimCity

No, EA Won’t Ban You On Origin If You Ask For A Refund For SimCity

A rumour has been spreading lately about how EA might ban users who request for refunds on SimCity. It’s bunk.

This widely posted chat shows a sales rep supposedly saying that if people tried to dispute the refund claim on SimCity, the would get banned on Origin. Naturally, the image scared folks.

Today, the Origin Twitter account stated the following:

The return policy Origin links to says it does not offer refunds on digital downloads, although physical purchases bought through the Origin store can be returned within 14 days of purchase. This means that, while EA won’t ban you for asking for a refund, you still won’t be getting one if you bought the game digitally.


  • What’s the legal standing though on selling a product even digitally, that frankly does not work upon release?

    Before anyone jumps in and says ‘well they said no refunds’, please remember, just because a retailer SAYS ‘No refunds’ or ‘store credit only’ does not make this so, infact, they cannot legally cut off avenues for a refund like that.

    So, can EA actually stop you legally getting a refund on a digital copy even if you press ok on the EULA (which are NOT 100% ironclad btw)???

    • Yeah they can. The fact that you don’t actually own anything via digital media means there is technically nothing to refund. This is why a lot of gamers will still prefer physical media over digital media

      • You own a key, you’ve been legally given access to a key granting you permission to use it on their server. Your name and details have been provided to use a product. It’s no different. Then there’s the fact there’s a papertrail for a monetary transaction… just a tiny thing, you know, money… a pretty big factor right there. Digital or not, it’s still a product.

        And Mase is that based on your opinion or actual ACCC standards?

        • What you’re talking about is a “right”. It’s like a cinema buying the rights to screen a film. While you are allowed to use the film, you technically do not own the film. So if something goes wrong you can’t ask for a refund because you technically do not own anything. Same thing applies to digital media. Read the Terms and Conditions sometime, you’d be surprised how many loopholes there are for the company I. It that would take forever and a day to sort out in a court to get a “legal or illegal” stance put in place.

          • actually, if I buy a ticket to a film and they don’t show the film I am entitled to a refund, if I buy a license to access a game I am entitled to access it, if I can’t access it I have the right for a refund because the service I purchased was not provided, it doesn’t matter what the terms and conditions say when the law says otherwise.

            basically not giving me access to the service I payed for is a violation of the license I purchase to use it, with reasonable exceptions although a game being completely unavailable on the day it was announced to be released is not a reasonable exception,

          • I’ve gotten a refund from Steam countless times. (A few times) I don’t think, the whole “it isn’t a physical product” holds water, even as a license it’s still a service which is held to similar laws.

          • Despite the small print on the back, I would put money on a decent lawyer to be able to argue that digital media is still a product that can be owned for purposes of a refund. Nothing is ironclad.
            And if a cinema bought the rights to screen a film and the film company made it impossible for the cinema to actually screen it, the cinema would definitely be able to demand a refund and sue if no provided.

      • That won’t save you. Just because it’s on physical media doesn’t change the fact that you’ve paid for a license to use the software, not the software itself.

        • The reality is that the crux is not in the product, but how the product was sold. What was sold was access to a working game. That isn’t what was delivered.

    • I’m not entirely sure, or even 1% sure, but from what I’ve heard from people using Steam is that the online store we buy from is based in the US, so Australian laws don’t apply when it comes to refunds. If Origin does the same thing, then I imagine you have no lower body to stand on re: a refund.

      • I wish international laws were more developed. It’s ridiculous how many cases like this come up just because it’s so hard to prosecute overseas

      • But they’ll charge Australian prices… Having their cake and eating it too. It’s gotta be illegal somehow. And if it’s not, it should be.

    • It’s difficult because of this question, “Where did the act happen?”

      With online sales, what counts? Your mouse click or the database update?

      If you cannot determine the location of the act, you cannot determine the governing law that applies.

      If it was by the mouse click then yes, the Australian law would apply if you and your mouse were on Australian soil. But if it goes by the database update then the you-know-what hits the fan because you made your purchase in the states but use the product in Australia. And for that, I do not think there is a clear answer.

      • Do they charge the ‘australia tax?’ if so, i’d argue they should follow australian law.

      • Contact your bank either way, EA may not be offering refunds, but fraud is still fraud, and just like if you had purchased a tv that doesn’t work or anything else, your bank will let you get your money back for the non-functioning, fraudulently sold product.

  • Considering that there is a screenshot from an Origin sales rep stating that the customer will get banned if they keep asking for a refund, this can be considered another EA/Origin lie

      • I know right! They are such a fine upstanding company that love their players and would never put profits first

        • I’m honestly thinking that EA, Activision and Ubisoft are like, the three heads of one big apocalyptic dragon that are vying for the fate of the gaming world… one day, all 3 will combine into EACTIVSIOSOFT and the software world will EXPLOOOOOODE with horror, death and destruction…

        • Lol I stand corrected.

          Just a side note: One thing I don’t understand with people purchasing EA games is that they always complain and then come back for another round once a new game comes out.

          If a restaurant kept serving you food with hairs in it would you go back every time they got a new menu item?

          I understand that the game should work on release, but why put yourselves through it every time.

          Just don’t buy it on release and wait until all the problems are ironned out.

        • The guy says to the rep that the product is defective and that he can call his bank and have the refund done that way.

          The guy is being told that if he calls his bank in order to get them to reverse the purchase that he would be banned.

          He is not being told if he requests a refund his account will be banned.

  • Pretty shocking they won’t refund digital purchases. Even Steam issues refunds if you go through the proper channels.

    Nice work EA. What a great company you are.

  • They won’t ban you if you REQUEST a refund, but they will ban you if you reverse the transaction when they refuse to GIVE a refund. It’s a load of deception. Apparently a refund is discretionary, and they use their discretion to refuse.

  • THis is all wrong,

    EA said they WILL ban you if you seek a refund from your Credit Card provider NOT directly from Origin.

    Seeking a refund from your CC provider acts as a transaction dispute which will mark your account as compromised and then it WILL be banned..

    • Exactly, nothing has changed just a nice piece of spin from EA.

      Dispute the charges with your financial institution to obtain a refund from EA, get banned.

  • To be clear on the situation (I just went through it). EA will not ban you for asking for a refund… they simply will not, under any circumstance, give you a refund. They will ban you if you call your bank and dispute the charge because the product they sent out was defective to the point of not working. EA says you should be more patient… I think they should have been more patient before charging my account.

  • On this same topic; it was rather validating for me to see them post specifically that they are comitted to complying with all Australian consumer protection laws, not just the one referenced regarding the ACCC by kotaku and other network sites after I commented as such on all such posts.

    A win for consumers. Now if only everyone was more aware of their rights here then this battle would never have even had to be fought. TO THE COMMENTS SECTION! *ups and aways super hero style*

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