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Selling Diablo 3 and Battle.net's Terms of Service
July 8, 2012 9:47 PM   Subscribe

I have a physical, legal copy of Diablo 3 I'm planning on selling on eBay. I always knew that once I got bored of D3 I'd be selling it, so when I registered it on Battle.net I created a whole new GMail & Battle.net account (with a fake name) so I could give them to the buyer as part of the sale. My questions, then, are as follows;

1. Would this sale violate anything in Battle.net's terms of service?
2. If yes, what "buyer beware" provisions, if any, I should put in my eBay ad so that I'm covered if Blizzard somehow work out that the game now belongs to a new owner.
3. How likely is it Blizzard would know the game has been sold and the account transferred to a new owner?
4. The passwords I created for Battle.net and GMail aren't passwords I normally use, so I'm not worried about a buyer somehow working out how to hack my e-mail or bank accounts. I will, of course, remove any links to Paypal I established for the RMAH. But in the interests of protecting myself, should I also delete my character (a level 43 wizard) which does use my real name before I sell it? Any other potential privacy pitfalls I should be aware of?
posted by Effigy2000 to Computers & Internet (5 answers total)
 
I'm sure you could pull it off, but a couple of warnings...

1. Blizzard does not recognize the transfer of Accounts. You may not purchase, sell, gift or trade any Account, or offer to purchase, sell, gift, or trade any Account, and any such attempt shall be null and void and may result in the forfeiture of your Account.

As a further note, the original "fake name" you used to register the account is permanently the "owner" of the account. If anything happens to the account, for example, getting it suspended or losing the password, the "original owner" of the account is the only person Blizzard will speak to - you will need to prove this by sending them ID (bank statements, drivers license, etc) or credit card details.

There is a scam where someone will "sell" their game to someone else, then call Blizzard up and say they lost their password, and now they have their account back!

3) Make sure you sell it to someone within the same country, at least. People who move countries a lot report that their account gets "locked" when they try access it from another country - they then need to provide verification that they are the original account owner.
posted by xdvesper at 10:36 PM on July 8, 2012 [3 favorites]


Are you in Europe? Because as just shown on the blue, it is legal to resell your copy of a software product here. Your account doesn't fall under that, but Blizzard is obliged to recognise your right to resell your copy.
posted by MartinWisse at 4:38 AM on July 9, 2012


[I used to work in CS for one of Blizzard's competitors.]

Everything xdvesper says is correct. That "repeatedly selling account" scam was quite common where I worked btw.

2. If yes, what "buyer beware" provisions, if any, I should put in my eBay ad so that I'm covered if Blizzard somehow work out that the game now belongs to a new owner.
Usually as long as the new owner doesn't have any reason to contact CS, things chug along. We didn't really proactively block accounts for strange IP changes unless it was to a high risk country (usually the Far East). If the "new" owner did contact us, we'd tell them sorry, you're not the legitimate owner, you're not getting support from us. The guy could then try to contact eBay or PayPal or whatever he used to buy the account, but usually this would be months after the purchase so he'd be SOL.
So you as the seller don't really run an awful lot of risk. It's still a shitty thing to do since you're violating the TOS and selling a not-fully-functioning product that the buyer will get no support with.

3. How likely is it Blizzard would know the game has been sold and the account transferred to a new owner?
Pretty likely. We used to check various things such as (obviously) login IP, contact address changes, sudden changes of means of payment etc. If the owner changed, we'd generally find out. But at any rate, if whoever contacts us doesn't pass the security checks, he gets no support, regardless of all this.

As for your character and his name, be aware that having a high level character is one of the main appeals of a 2nd hand account. So if you delete it, it's hardly worth the hassle of potentially losing access.
posted by ClarissaWAM at 5:02 AM on July 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


"It's still a shitty thing to do since you're violating the TOS and selling a not-fully-functioning product that the buyer will get no support with. "

I strongly disagree with both points here.

It is not "shitty" to violate unreasonable and unfair TOS. Companies can't just arbitrarily decide to enforce their agendas on society. We have a strong tradition of First-sale rights, and, in fact, it's shitty for game companies to try to circumvent that (via licensing rather than selling a product).

As for the fact that the game will lack support and thus be functionally limited (well, mildly so, since the game will actually function just fine), within an ethical context, so long as you inform the buyers of this limitation (and adjust the price accordingly, if market forces encourage you to do so), then I see nothing wrong with the sale. Many buyers will happily accept the risk associated with the purchase in exchange for a price below retail.
posted by oddman at 6:43 AM on July 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


As noted above, there is no legitimate way to sell your Diablo account, at least in the US. Blizzard is quite clear that your purchase of Diablo 3 is non-transferable. I don't think there's any particular ethical problem with what you want to do, particularly if the buyer understands the issue.

To the specific question of your level 43 wizard; I'd only delete it because of the real name. But if my name were very common, I'd probably not bother. But a level 43 character is not terribly valuable, it represents about 15 hours of play time from someone skilled at the game. Also all your gold and items are transferable via the stash, so some of the value from the character would be retained even if you delete it.
posted by Nelson at 7:41 AM on July 9, 2012


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