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 Boy buys big....?

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Join date : 2009-08-16
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PostSubject: Boy buys big....?   Fri Apr 09, 2010 8:10 am

Boy buys big in Farmville

A 12 year-old British boy has used his mother’s credit card to make purchases exceeding £900 in Facebook’s popular agriculture game, Farmville.

In fairness, the lad plugged £288 of his own savings into this ill-advised investment. The rest of it was all on his mum’s plastic, though, and was spent completely without her knowledge:

“The first use of my card was on 14 March,” she tells The Guardian.

“I discovered it on the 29th and the card was stopped at that point. Any transactions after that date were already in the system, so what I thought was a £427 spend turned into £625 over the next few days.”

And the rest, as they say, is history – just like the boy’s chances of ever being allowed back on the home computer again. To add insult to injury Facebook, which hosts the game, has cancelled the boy’s account too. Perhaps that’s because, at 12 years old, he’s actually too young to be playing it.

Meanwhile it appears that the possibility of a refund from either the credit card company or the game’s makers is slim, since the credit card was supposed to be the mother’s responsibility. However HSBC, the card issuers, has said it may consider reimbursing the woman if she decides to file criminal charges against her son.

“Obviously the idea of a stupid farm simulation jeopardising his future earnings is not something that I want to consider,” is all she had to say about that proposition.

So how did the lad himself account for his wayward spending spree?

“...they had brought out good stuff that I wanted.”

Blimey, kids eh? However the biggest irony in all of this is that Farmville is mostly free to play, with users purchasing extra items only if they want them. But therein lie many lessons about the dangers of supposedly free applications – as well as the pitfalls of leaving minors alone with their mum’s purse.

Should have been more careful where she left her credit card.
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