Sony sued for £5bn for ‘deceiving’ consumer
THE Sony is being processed in the UK under accusation of “deceiving” the consumer in your digital store. The lawsuit is being spearheaded by Alex Neill and claims that the Japanese company breaks competition laws by demanding a percentage of every purchase made on the PlayStation Store.
In the process, the manufacturer of PlayStation is accused of overcharging a total of £5 billion, equivalent to BRL 30.2 billion in PS Store fees over the last six years. The document claims to include any and all transactions on the online store, whether purchasing games or DLCs, from August 19, 2016 until now. It is estimated that this total refers to transactions carried out by approximately 9 million people.
In an interview with Sky News, Alex Neill spoke a bit about the situation, claiming to be using legal action on behalf of “millions of people in the UK who have been overcharged unintentionally”. For him, “Sony has been abusing its position and taking advantage of its customers“.
Neil further states that Games are now the biggest form of entertainment in the nation and that “many vulnerable people depend on games” as a form of interaction and communication. In addition, Sony’s charges would be impacting people in unfavorable financial circumstancesespecially in a period of crisis, and that “the consumer’s pocket has been squeezed like never before”.
If the Competition Appeals Court finds the PlayStation maker guilty of committing anti-competitive practices, each of those millions of users could be eligible for receive compensation ranging between R$405 and R$3,404 plus interest.
Neill’s lawsuit argues that Sony would have taken advantage of its market position, imposing a 30% fee on developers and publishers on any and all transactions made on the PlayStation Store. This percentage, according to Neill, would be a way found by Sony to take advantage of consumers. It is not clear, however, whether the objective is to end the tariff or simply reduce it.
Curiously, only Sony is the target of the lawsuit. Other companies also charge the same 30% transaction fee, such as Steam, Xbox, and Apple, while Epic Games trails a bit behind charging just 12%. None of them, however, are accused in the document next to the PlayStation manufacturer.