Better Disclosure of In-Game Purchases is Focus of Bill Introduced Today

Monday, February 12, 2018

Sacramento –Assemblymember Bill Quirk (D-20) introduced a bill today that seeks to address the recent proliferation of real money purchases in video games. AB 2194 will require video game manufacturers to post a disclosure on the physical retail box if a video game has in-game purchases.

 

“Video games have rapidly become one of the largest and most popular industries in entertainment, and an important economic benefit to our state” said Assemblymember Quirk. “Unfortunately, the industry has found a way to take advantage of consumers.”

 

Commonly known as “microtransactions,”“lootboxes” and “DLC”, is extra content a player purchases with real money after the initial purchase of the game.

 

Avid gamers have shared stories about how surprised they were to learn, only after purchasing the game, that in order to move to a next level, for example, a payment needed to be made. A recent review of Star Wars Battlefront II, by a user a Star Wars Gaming fan site calculated that it would cost roughly $2,000 to unlock every base-game piece of content.

 

AB 2194 is a response to the lack of transparency regarding real money purchases in video games.

 

Assemblymember Quirk joins a growing number of other state legislators across the nation, including Hawaii and Washington, taking practical, effective approaches to the recent issues surrounding the video game industry.

 

“Gaming has become an essential part of California’s entertainment economy. I am happy to join other legislators from across our nation in addressing this issue by making sure California does its part to protect consumers in creating a more transparent process in how information is shared by manufacturers regarding video-game microtransactions” stated Assemblymember Quirk.

 

AB 2194 will be eligible to be heard in Committee in March.