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  • PayPal - Not our pals =/

    Update: PayPal is available on Buy Now! since we have partnered with Humble Store

    Due to the number of inquiries we continue to receive about PayPal, I wanted to post this response from an older thread in a more visible location.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------

    I haven't said much specific about our ordeal with PayPal since I had held out hope that we could work out an agreement with them but it doesn't look like that is going to happen, so I figure I might as well share our experience to clear up confusion about the issue and perhaps benefit other people / companies.

    PayPal seems to be rather inconsistent in the way they deal with different companies and in the information they provide about what is or is not acceptable. I know of a couple companies who have used PayPal during alpha, beta, and even for pre-orders significantly in advance of releasing anything, similar to us, without incident. However, very shortly after we began using PayPal for pre-orders they froze our account due to "suspicious activity". Apparently making money is suspicious. When we inquired about it they said they would do a review of the account and determine a course of action. The result of the review was that they felt our business model was too risky, closed our account, and held our funds for 6 months.

    Why was our account reviewed in the first place? I can't say for certain but I don't think it was the result of anyone reporting us. We've never had an unhappy customer to my knowledge. I think their system just automatically flags accounts for review based on certain activity like volume of transactions or when you attempt to increase the limits on how much money you can transfer out of your PayPal account per month. Our sales volume had suddenly spiked during the end of Jan / early Feb and we were doing quite a lot of pre-orders for a couple days until they froze our account. At that same time I applied to raise our transfer limit since it starts out at something ridiculously low like $500 / month, so maybe that triggered it. They make it very easy to get started using PayPal and then, once you're already using their service and generating a significant revenue, they decide whether they like your business or not.

    At the time of the review, their stated issue was that they do not support the pre-sale of an item more than 20 days from shipping and that they believed our business model posed too great a risk for charge-backs. I said that I didn't understand what the risk was given that our pre-order, at that time, was quite clearly presented as a means of contributing to the project. A PayPal representative said that he believed people either wouldn't read that or wouldn't understand it and then would be upset when they didn't receive a finished, playable game soon after their purchase.

    There was a similar story about the Minecraft developer, Markus Persson's funds being frozen by PayPal as well but I think he was finally able to work out some sort of deal with them perhaps due to the publicity he got over the matter. I think his circumstances may have also been somewhat different since he did have a playable alpha available for people at the time.

    Whatever the case, I recently attempted to talk with PayPal again since they finally released our funds and we've never had a single charge-back in all this time. I thought with that spotless record, they might be willing to work out some sort of deal with us perhaps where they held a certain percentage of our funds in reserve to further mitigate the charge-back risk.

    As is evidenced by the fact that we still cannot accept payment through PayPal, that conversation, unfortunately, did not go well. They said our business model is too high risk for them because we do not ship a physical product to people that PayPal can verify through postal tracking when claims arise. I brought up the fact that other companies engage in the sale of virtual goods in exactly the same manner using PayPal, at which point she said they could investigate those companies if I wanted. I obviously declined not wanting anyone else to feel the wrath of PayPal. I then pursued a different approach asking what we could do to change our business model to make it more amenable to PayPal. I was told there was nothing we could do. I even suggested we could start shipping a physical product to people. I got the same answer, there was nothing we could do. I didn't understand that since I felt like we had only ever been engaged in fair and honest business and were willing to make significant changes to appease them. After a little more back and forth, I finally got to the bottom of it - the representative told me once they made the decision to close an account, it was their company policy to never reinstate it.

    So, while engaging in honest business with fans who want to support our game, following a model similar to other small companies we know that use PayPal, our account was closed and we are now permanently banned from ever using PayPal for all time.

    My intention is not to discourage other people / businesses from using PayPal but merely to suggest that they should make the decision with open eyes and carefully consider how and when, in the course of their business, to use the service. As we have discovered, even with the best intentions, it isn't difficult to end up on the wrong side of PayPal and suffer irrevocable consequences. I think the best suggestion is to not use the PayPal for pre-orders and at least wait until you have an alpha to give people.

    Uhh yeah, so we're exploring other payment options. We think we've found a suitable alternative but I've just been so busy with development that I haven't had time to take the next step. We'll have other forms of payment up before we go alpha though.
    Last edited by eisprinzessin; 04-07-2013, 09:50 PM. Reason: outdated since GD orders are processed via the Humble Store

  • #2
    I quit using paypal at all after reading many of the horror stories here:

    http://www.paypalsucks.com/

    Comment


    • #3
      Hmm.. I should reconsider if I should continue using PayPal. It's convenient, but always felt rather unsafe.. the whole "we're not a bank" and random behaviour doesn't really give me a good vibe at all.

      The only thing I used PayPal for is Steam and I don't really need it anymore since they introduced iDEAL as a payment option

      Comment


      • #4
        Crappy PayPal but then Ebay has owned you now since lat year so imagine that. Ebay' service has took a major dive as well and I won't use them for selling anymore with a spotless 100% record to boot.
        Early adopter Legendary Contributor/Supporter.

        "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from a religious conviction"~ Blaise Pascal

        “Once the game is over, the king and the pawn go back in the same box.” ~ Italian proverb

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        • #5
          That must suck, but glad you used something else than pay pal

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          • #6
            Damn ! I wanted to preco but without Paypal it's not possible! I don't have any other way to pay on internet (no credit card)...
            *SPROTCH* Mouhahah, who's next ?
            French Player
            == Loyalist ==

            Comment


            • #7
              Can you buy those pre-paid credit cards?
              "I've always felt that a person's intelligence is directly reflected by the number of conflicting points of view he can entertain simultaneously on the same topic."

              Comment


              • #8
                Death to the heretics! Bombs, blood, Horse sacrifices.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Renevent View Post
                  Can you buy those pre-paid credit cards?
                  Hum, yes i can. But i'm not sure it's work if I use a french prepaid card (in €) to buy an american game (in $).

                  Originally posted by Douglas Siano View Post
                  Death to the heretics! Bombs, blood, Horse sacrifices.
                  Hum ?
                  *SPROTCH* Mouhahah, who's next ?
                  French Player
                  == Loyalist ==

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by LordHinateur View Post
                    Hum, yes i can. But i'm not sure it's work if I use a french prepaid card (in €) to buy an american game (in $).
                    Would that be any different from a regular credit card? I'm charged 1.75% for foreign assignment.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      HOHOHO! All

                      I have just found out about Grim Dawn and am rather keen that the game is a success. TQIT was the greatest game of its kind and this one seems to be shaping up nicely also.

                      PAYPAL... the main topic at hand... I too have had troubles from them as they are very inflexible. I thought with the advent of internet transactions and the like that using pre-paid credit cards would be a great way to buy items etc online. These cards are of a low value ($20-$200) and can be purchased from post offices and supermarkets. What a great idea hey? NOT according to PayPal (who, by the way.. are NOT your "pals"). I tried to use a PayPal account using prepaid credit cards and they "can't do it". The main reason being they cant prove "you" own the card.

                      Its a prepaid card, the holder of it, owns it!!

                      Anyways, after lots of arguing and blocking of my account and keeping the money in their coffers for more than a month (earning a nice interest I bet), I was recredited the money to the card they couldn't prove was mine. So I spent it on something else in the same supermarket I got it from.

                      Needless to say... it is GOOD that you don't use PayPal.

                      What I DO suggest is for you to look into allowing the use of PRE PAID credit cards. They are low cost, and easy to obtain. Does your current money changer allow the use of these or not?
                      Last edited by Santa; 09-28-2011, 04:35 AM. Reason: typo
                      Just because a majority
                      Believe in something -
                      Doesn't make it true!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        You know, I'm honestly not sure. What company issues the cards? (not the supermarketing you got it from, but what company actually makes / provides the cards that the supermarket uses)

                        I'm guessing the only way to find out, is to try it.

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                        • #13
                          The cards are issued by different companies that use various banks. They are either Visa of MasterCard types but come from various organisations.Normally these cards are of low dollar amounts as I mentioned above and have a limited time to use (normally one year). Some of these pre paid credit cards can be "topped up" using your own bank account and usually require registration online. This allows the user to check their balance after each transaction, as it is important not to exceed the value on the card (or it simple fails to approve). Basically it is a short term cheap credit card that we can buy very easily in Australia.

                          I have used it to buy things from various countries so they work fine. Any company that uses Paypal to do its credit card checks for online transactions will at first approve it but then after a week or two will block the money (as they are unable to cross check ownership).

                          These cards are not real credit cards they are "prepaid visa gift cards". They are like a cash gift that allows the receiver to spend it online (as per the cards promotion details.. Easy safe convenient etc).

                          You are right, the only way to see is to try it I guess BUT.. if it is blocked after a week or two then what? Painful emails back and forth trying to explain what they are and how they work... oh no not again.

                          But I might just try it if you like, you know, as a test. Next time I am down the street I will get one and obtain a game key through your site to see how it goes. I will post the results here so others can see if this option will work for them. If it does work then those who think Paypal is their only option will be most pleased I am sure.
                          Just because a majority
                          Believe in something -
                          Doesn't make it true!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            PrePaid Gift Cards (Visa)

                            OK everyone,

                            Here are the results of my prepaid gift card technique....

                            I used a Visa prepaid card through a company called VCARD ( www.virtualvcard.com ). After I registered on their site I activated the card purchased from the supermarket. I checked the amount of money available to use and then went to the Grim Dawn 'BUY NOW' section.

                            I selected the required key type and filled out the needed fields and submitted it.

                            I received notification of my purchase via email, and then I checked VCard balance. The monies had been taken thus proving the card was accepted (for the time being anyway).

                            I have not received my game key as yet, however that might take a day or so. And I shall keep you all updated.

                            But so far it seems that prepaid cards (Visa), DO in fact work! This ought to enable anyone to buy a game key if they so wish. But please wait until I obtain my key for confirmation.

                            Santa out
                            Last edited by Santa; 09-30-2011, 12:42 AM. Reason: typo
                            Just because a majority
                            Believe in something -
                            Doesn't make it true!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Success!!

                              HOHOHO!! ALL!

                              Well it seems like the prepaid cards (visa) work just fine! I have received my game key and all seems to be working fine.

                              So for all of you who don't have a credit card.. now you know you don't need one as these prepaid cards work fine. Hence.. go out and get one and obtain a key to help get Grim Dawn made!!

                              Santa out
                              Just because a majority
                              Believe in something -
                              Doesn't make it true!

                              Comment

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