NEWS - Thursday, January 17, 2008

Lawyer Explains Xbox Live Lawsuit

"These are not guys looking to get rich," said Jason Gibson, the plaintiffs’ lawyer, in an interview with MTV News. "They are in their late 20s and 30s. They are college-educated. These are not young kids who just turned 18 and [want] to sue for the fun of it. This is, to them, a real issue."

Gibson’s clients are gamers Keith Kay, Orlando Perez and Shannon Smith, who filed a class-action lawsuit against Microsoft on January 4 following troubles accessing the platform holder’s Xbox Live online gaming service over the Christmas period. Gibson also said that more than 50 other plaintiffs have joined Kay, Smith and Perez in the suit.

As previously reported, Microsoft claimed that the Xbox Live problems, which it put down to unprecedented service activity over the holiday period, had been fixed. A minority of reports claim this to be untrue, stating that problems signing in to Xbox Live, matchmaking and account recovery issues persist. Unfortunately for those users, the lawsuit, which claims that “Microsoft knew the increase in subscriptions would increase game-play on its servers, yet failed to provide adequate access and service to Xbox Live and its subscribers,” is now prohibiting Microsoft from providing status updates regarding the functionality of Xbox Live.

"When you have one person who is mad and they can’t get a response, and they can’t get their complaints addressed by a company like Microsoft, the only way to get their attention is in numbers," said Gibson, who claims he’s never lost a trial.

"They take the money for the subscriptions, but they don’t make sure that the service is going to be there. They kind of put the cart before the horse. To me, you make sure the service is going to be there. Make sure the product is going to be there. And then feel good about taking money for the service and the product."

Microsoft recently announced that more than ten million people have subscribed to its Xbox Live service. It says it will continue to communicate with its customers through “our normal channels, such as and other means”.


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