Guy Suing Subway Over Sandwich Length Sues GameStop Over DLC

Guy Suing Subway Over Sandwich Length Sues GameStop Over DLC

Electronic Arts may have ended its odious online pass policy, but GameStop still is on the hook. A US judge will allow a lawsuit to go forward with allegations GameStop didn't disclose the hidden cost of downloadable content. The plaintiff has also sued Subway for making 11-inch sandwiches and selling them as foot-longs.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that a federal judge this week allowed the case to go forward. John Farley of Marlton, N.J., has a right to sue GameStop, according to the ruling, for not disclosing that used games purchased from the retailer had hidden costs in the form of online access passes or other downloadable content.

Farley, noted the Inquirer, also sued Subway earlier this year for making 11-inch sandwiches and calling them one foot long. Two other plaintiffs are part of the suit, but, interestingly, they bought EA Sports games that predated the label's "online pass" policy, which put online multiplayer and other features behind a one-use code. That was introduced with Tiger Woods PGA Tour 11 in 2010. Electronic Arts earlier this year said it was doing away with online passes — all of them, not just for new games, but existing ones as well — saying it was heeding consumer feedback about the policy.

Online passes — which other publishers have employed (in sports, THQ introduced them first with UFC Undisputed 2010) — essentially give a publisher a cut from a used game sale. As a one-use code, the original owner of a game is assumed to use the one included with the game for free. When he resells it, anyone who buys that copy must then pay $US10 or $US15 — to the publisher, through an online service like Xbox Live — to access whatever features the code delivers. Farley's lawsuit contends this potential cost was not made apparent to used-games buyers.

Farley's complaint stemmed from his purchase of a used copy of Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit in 2011, and his inability to access multiplayer racing without a pass. His lawyer, notes the Inquirer, also "specialises in class-action lawsuits."

Video Game Suit Can Proceed [Philadelphia Inquirer]


    Honestly I have so sympathy for people who buy used games, its worse than piracy.

      Honestly, no one cares about your sympathy.

      Honestly, I have no sympathy for people who want to exercise their right to use a thing that they own as they see fit. It's worse than outright theft!

      Fixed that for you.

    The wording on this one is too broad I think ... "GameStop didn’t disclose the hidden cost of downloadable content" can apply to all DLC. It's hardly the fault of the distributor that DLC gets released.

    On the other hand, if it's just about the online passes then it is justified. Those I think ARE a hidden cost if you're buying 2nd hand and want access to the normal game content.

      I reckon his argument will hedge in the fact that the back of the game box says "online multiplayer," not that the game has DLC specifically.

        Don't have a case on me, but I thought there's a note at the bottom of the case about online passes, that you may be required to purchase?

        Last edited 12/08/13 9:08 am

          Usually there is from memory, along the lines of "this game requires a pass to play online". I don't remember as I generally buy brand new games to support the developers. But when i did buy second-hand, as a crafty gamer, I was aware of which games required online codes.

    In any other country the buyer surely would've gone back to the retailer, complained and been offered a refund and/or apology for not explaining online passes (which I'm fairly sure are actually written on most game cases anyway - fine print I'll admit but it is still usually there).

    The only reason this would need to go further is if he didn't even bother returning to the store and instead just sued....Only in America.

      Not sure about other retailers in Australia but i work at JB and the stickers we put on all our pre owned stock clearly has 'online/download content may require additional purchase.' And by clearly i mean its not hidden at all, its still pretty small print

      Or perhaps he went back and was told he wouldn't get a refund.

      This "individual" has a history or frivolous law suits it seems, so he simply jumped at the opportunity to sue GameStop to make more money and has nothing to do with wanting a fair deal. There are people in America who make a living in this manner. Most other countries would simply throw out such cases but that's not how they do it in the US.

        The subway suit may seem frivolous, but it was a big win for consumer protection from fraudulent advertising. Subway's defence was pretty much 'we are allowed to lie because advertising can lie'. Which was, you know, a lie.
        In this case, retailers can sell a $60 game second hand for a price that is not indicative of a whole product. For example: Halo 4 is $60. I see it second hand for $50. If Microsoft choose to do the online pass bullshit and EB don't feel the need to tell me, I now have to pay a hidden fee in order to get the advertised product. I had a reasonable expectation of the product and was not supplied with a product meeting my reasonable, advertised expectation. That is fraudulent.

    Members of the jury, does this sound like a man who had 'all you can eat?'

      Truly, the greatest injustice since 'The Never-ending Story.'

        Overweight jury: That could have been me!

    So when does season 1 of this new reality show launch? That's how the US works right?

      If you loved Honey Boo Boo, you're gonna love Farley Sue Sue. You fail to give him an inch he'll sue for a mile. Coming this fall.

      Last edited 11/08/13 4:52 pm

    Didn't EA make the passes free? This jamoke sues first before downloading the free pass.

      Yea that was my first thought but it says that it has to do with a purchase in 2011 so online passes would have still been $10-15

    If his lawyer gets 40%, I say put them both in a firing line.
    Only 40% get to shoot the lawyer - draw lots just before the execution.

    I may just be old but I remember a time when people needed a job to earn a living. Fuckers like this give me the shits. The sad part is just how often they win which justifies this farce.......

      I'm torn. I dislike the whole "Fuck it, I'm going to sue" mentality, but I like that people are standing against this kind of bullshit (both the EA/Gamestop thing, and the Subway lie)

      Last edited 14/08/13 2:35 am

        Yeah...I don't think they're doing it as a matter of principle.

        Last edited 11/08/13 8:12 pm

      The GameStop case seems like a farce but to me the Subway case has merit. For a multinational organisation such as this, and for a such a crucial part of their business b model, it's almost guaranteed that internally the misleading nature of their statement was looked at, and a conscious decision was made to ignore it. While by itself it may seem like a superficial mistake, it's backlash like this that prevents companies such as Subway from being even more misleading and deceptive.

    Why didn't he just go back to GameStop and ask for an online pass? i fairly sure that GameStop would have a couple of unused codes laying around.

    I remember going into my local Game store (when Game was still a thing) and seeing a basket on their counter full of unused online pass and DLC codes and about 5 for Hot Pursuit all free to take.

    I can see where this guy is coming from but he does seem a bit fond for frivolous lawsuits and in the end if he loses then is up for a lot more money than if just paid for the code.

      Why didn't he just go back to GameStop and ask for an online pass?

      Because there's more money for him this way.

    I'm sure this bloke's doing this more for money than for any kind of principle, but in most states of the US, consumer rights and trade practices legislation is notoriously weak, so any precedent these cases set would be a good thing. It might sound stupid when you're talking about sandwiches, but when a product is advertised as being of a certain size, or having a set of features, then the product should actually have those features or be that size. Just taking the game back isn't going to change anything - why shouldn't the bloke make a stand, as self-serving as it might appear?

    or perhaps he already knew about this just like everyone else but did it anyway to try and play dumb and squeeze out any money he can from them

      This. Online passes have been around for ages. Either he's doing it out of principle or he's been living under a rock for the last 3 years.

    People like this should be taken out back and have the stupid beaten out of them.

      Good in theory, but come on, the Sun (and this planet) are only around for another 4b years, give or take, are you sure there's enough time?

    I'd like to hear the full story and his side of things too

      Here is the full story.. He is just a cheap skate looking to squeeze some money out of a big company. People who do this kind of thing sicken me. So so selfish. So glad I'm Australian and don't live over there.

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