I am sure most of you have heard about the recent billing issues that Mythic has had with its Warhammer Online game. Last week multiple accounts (even a few canceled accounts) were charged multiple monthly fees at one time. In some cases, up to 53 times. Mythic immediately issued an apology and gave instructions on how to begin processing a refund for these charges and for the overdraft fees that may have occurred because of them. In many cases, the charges have already been rectified and were within 24 hours of notification. Others, however, are still waiting.
Look, I am not going to sugar-coat this, it is bad. It was a bad mistake and caused enormous stress to all involved. It caused missed payments, lack of funds and untold headaches to everyone affected. There is no doubt, this was bad.
But, some people are just taking it too far. I really enjoy Syp’s Bio-Break blog, he is one of my favorite bloggers, but this post is BS. Mythic did not steal from these people. It was a mistake and one that Mythic is attempting to rectify.
Stealing requires intent or it would require Mythic to attempt to keep the money after they realized their mistake. Mythic did neither of those things. Take a look at this explanation from Wikipedia:
The actus reus of theft is usually defined as an unauthorised taking, keeping or using of another’s property which must be accompanied by a mens rea of dishonesty and/or the intent to permanently deprive the owner or the person with rightful possession of that property or its use.
For example, if X goes to a restaurant and, by mistake, takes Y’s scarf instead of her own, she has physically deprived Y of the use of the property (which is the actus reus) but the mistake prevents X from forming the mens rea (i.e. because she believes that she is the owner, she is not dishonest and does not intend to deprive the “owner” of it) so no crime has been committed at this point. But if she realises the mistake when she gets home and could return the scarf to Y, she will steal the scarf if she dishonestly keeps it. Note that there may be civil liability for the torts of trespass to chattels or conversion in either eventuality.
Mythic had no intent here. It was a very unfortunate mistake and, to top it off, was probably done by a third party billing company and not by Mythic themselves. I have no doubt that this will hurt Mythic badly and at a time when Mythic can not afford much in the way of mistakes. It is sad that this occurred just when they were getting a bit of momentum behind them and Warhammer Online. This stops all momentum dead in its tracks.
The post by Syp is not the only thing that is fogging up the waters in this situation either, the official forums are going nuts. I understand the frustration and the anger but do you really have to start another new thread on this every two seconds? Mythic has asked that everyone affected post in a single post but, no, everyone feels they have to start their own because, you know, their situation is special. Ridiculous.
Along with the legitimate anger, comes the ludicrous claims such as this one. Really?!? You lost your house? Oh, come ON!!! Are you one of the ones bitching because it takes Mythic and your bank so long to refund a charge that happened instantaneously? Want to know why? That post is why. That right there.
I can guarantee that for every legitimate claim about this, there is at least one that is total BS. People see an opening and they attempt to take advantage of it, they bog down the system and they make the legitimate claims take that much longer to process. It happens every time. Sucks for the honest folk but that is exactly what happens.
My advice to those affected? Call Mythic, be angry at them, ask demand everything that is rightfully yours and any fees accrued because of this situation. Be persistent but do so in the right way. Post in the thread that is provided, don’t start a new one just because. Keep your demands and statements in context. This is not theft, Mythic did not steal from you. They made a mistake and one that needs to be paid for and rectified but don’t make this into something that it’s not. This is not liquor store theft, this is a mistake. Period.