Sign of release date? Perhaps.
Yesterday we had a user on our forums notice that they were prompted to sign the TOU agreement again. While this was an old agreement, updated as of May 26, 2010, another blogger had surmised that this was a sign that a new TOU would be released shortly. It turns out that his predictions served true. Whether that was pure guess work or a shred of knowledge remains to be seen.
The interesting part of its release is that it is back-dated to December 10th. If we remember that far back, December 9th was the day we first heard about the Battle.net Balance. The feature was given the “soon” stamp, with an estimated launch of a few weeks. It was so aptly pointed out that it has now been 8 weeks since we heard anything about the Battle.net Balance.
The important thing to take away from this update is that these changes were a necessary hurdle to overcome before a release date could be possible. As Azzure and other members have deduced, the RMAH and related infrastructure are one of the possible sources of delay. The game itself has elbow-room with features and balancing. With real money transactions, however, there is no room for error based on the sensitive nature of security. With the release of the TOU and related information regarding the service, it could indicate the imminent launch of their Battle.net Balance feature. So… load up on your Bobby Bucks!
Related Links with New Information:
Battle.net Balance FAQ
Syncing Paypal with Battle.net
Adding Funds to Battle.net Balance
What are your guys’ thoughts about those? Sign of release? More hot air?
Here is the new terms of service in full. Note that this is currently only available over on the EU Battle.net site. The US site still has the May 26th version of the TOU.
1. Grant of a Limited License to Use the Service. Subject to the terms and conditions of this Agreement and your agreement to, and continuing compliance with, this Agreement, Blizzard hereby grants you a limited, revocable, non-transferable, non-sublicensable and non-exclusive license to use the Service solely for your own non-commercial entertainment purposes by accessing it with a web browser or an authorized, unmodified Game client.
2. Additional License Limitations. The license granted to you in Section 1 is subject to the limitations set forth in Sections 1 and 2 (collectively, the “License Limitations”). Any use of the Service or any Game in violation of the License Limitations will be regarded as an infringement of Blizzard’s copyrights in and to the Service and/or Game. You agree that you will not, under any circumstances:
- 2.1 create or use cheats, automation software (bots), hacks, mods or any other unauthorized third-party software designed to modify the Service, any Game or any Game experience;
- 2.2 exploit the Service, a Game or any part thereof for any commercial purpose, including without limitation (a) use at a cyber cafe, computer gaming center or any other commercial establishment without the express written consent of Blizzard, unless otherwise stated in a Game EULA; (b) to communicate or facilitate any commercial advertisement or solicitation; (c) for gathering in-game currency, items or resources for sale outside of a Game without Blizzard’s authorization; (d) selling or trading Game characters or accounts for the Service and/or a Game; or (e) performing in-game services in exchange for payment outside the Game, e.g., power-leveling;
- 2.3 use the Service for any “e-sports” or group competition sponsored, promoted or facilitated by any commercial or non-profit entity without Blizzard’s prior written consent;
- 2.4 buy or sell for real money or in exchange for in-game currency, items or resources that may be used in a Game or outside of a Game without Blizzard’s authorization;
- 2.5 let any third party (except for a minor as stipulated under Section 4 below) use your account on the Service or for a Game;
- 2.6 use any unauthorized third-party software that intercepts, “mines”, or otherwise collects information from or through any Game or the Service, including without limitation any software that reads areas of RAM used by any Game or the Service to store information about a character or a Game environment; provided, however, that Blizzard may, at its sole and absolute discretion, allow the use of certain third party user interfaces;
- 2.7 modify or cause to be modified any files that are a part of any Game or the Service in any way not expressly authorized by Blizzard;
- 2.8 host, provide or develop matchmaking services for any Game or the Service, or intercept, emulate or redirect the communication protocols used by Blizzard in any way, for any purpose, including without limitation unauthorized play over the internet, network play, or as part of content aggregation networks;
- 2.9 facilitate, create or maintain any unauthorized connection to any Game or the Service, including without limitation (a) any connection to any unauthorized server that emulates, or attempts to emulate, the Service or any Game; and (b) any connection using programs or tools not expressly approved by Blizzard; or
- 2.10 disrupt or assist in the disruption of (i) any computer used to support the Service or any Game environment (each a “Server”); or (ii) any other player’s Game experience. ANY ATTEMPT BY YOU TO DISRUPT THE SERVICE OR UNDERMINE THE LEGITIMATE OPERATION OF ANY GAME MAY BE A VIOLATION OF CRIMINAL AND CIVIL LAWS.
5. Accessing the Service.
- 5.1 Account Eligibility. You may establish an Account only if you are a “natural person” and 16 years of age or older. Note that certain features of the Service, or Games playable on the Service, may not be available to minors. Corporations, Limited Liability Companies, partnerships and other legal or business entities may not establish an Account. Individuals prohibited by Blizzard from using the Service may not create or use an Account. By accepting this Agreement, you hereby represent and warrant that you meet these eligibility requirements. If at any time Blizzard becomes aware that you have registered an Account without meeting the foregoing requirements, Blizzard reserves the right to take steps to suspend, terminate and/or delete the Account.
- 5.2 Establishing an Account. When creating or updating an Account on the Service, you are required to provide Blizzard with certain personal information such as your name, address, email address and, in some cases, payment information. An unused Authentication Key provided to you by Blizzard will be required when adding a Game license to an Account. A Game license must be added to an Account before you can play that Game online, where applicable. You agree that you will supply accurate and complete information to Blizzard when requested, and that you will update that information promptly after it changes.
- 5.3 Username and Password. During the Account creation process, you may be required to select a unique username and/or a password (collectively referred to hereunder as “Login Information”), and you may not share the Account or the Login Information with anyone other than as expressly set forth herein. You are responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of the Login Information, and, provided that you act negligently or willfully, you will be responsible for all uses of the Login Information, including purchases, whether or not authorized by you. In the event you become aware of or reasonably suspect any breach of security, including without limitation any loss, theft, or unauthorized disclosure of the Login Information, you must immediately notify Blizzard through our web contact form at http://www.battle.net/support.
6. Storing Value on the Account.
- 6.1 The Account can be loaded with funds that can only be used to purchase goods and services on Battle.net. Note that the Account is not a credit line, overdraft protection or deposit account. Unless otherwise required by law or permitted by this Agreement, all balances on the Account are non-refundable and may not be redeemed for cash. The Account does not expire, and you will not be charged fees for any reason. Funds which are loaded onto an Account do not accrue interest.
- 6.2 To load value onto the Account, go to https://eu.battle.net/account/management/ebalance-purchase.html and follow the instructions provided to you on the page. Transactions initiated to load funds onto the Account are governed by the Terms of Sale, which can be viewed at https://eu.battle.net/account/management/transaction-history.html. The minimum amount that can be loaded to an Account is 1 £, and the maximum value of the Account is limited to 172 £. Blizzard reserves the right to change the maximum and minimum amounts at any time by notifying you in accordance with Section 8 of this Agreement. You may load different currencies onto the Account (Euros, British Pounds and/or Rubles), in order to purchase goods and/or services offered on Battle.Net in that respective currency. Blizzard will not send you a statement of itemized transactions on the Account. In order to check the balance loaded on the Account, or review recent transactions on the Account, go to https://eu.battle.net/account/management/transaction-history.html
- 6.3 Funds loaded onto the Account may only be used for purchases of goods and services that are available on Battle.net, and you are responsible for all transactions associated with the Account, including unauthorized transactions. If you suspect that the Account has been compromised, you should contact Blizzard customer service http://www.battle.net/support. The balance on the Account will only be protected from the point that Blizzard issues a message to you indicating that Blizzard has received your notice that the Account may have been compromised. At that point, Blizzard will freeze the remaining balance on the Account, and will unfreeze the Account once Blizzard has returned the control of the Account back to you and you have changed the password on the Account.
- 6.4 In the event that Blizzard determines that you are in any way responsible for compromising Accounts, Blizzard retains the right to remove funds from the Account gained through compromising other Accounts, suspending access to any services provided to you by Blizzard, such as access to in-Game auction houses, terminating the Account, and/or taking any and all legal actions available to Blizzard against you.
- 6.5 In the event that you agree to purchase goods or services from Blizzard, and thereafter default upon your obligation to pay for the purchase, you hereby agree that Blizzard shall have the right to freeze any funds currently loaded onto the Account, and use those funds to pay for the obligation that you have defaulted on until the obligation is paid in full. Once the obligation has been paid, either by funds loaded onto the Account, or by other payment methods, Blizzard may unfreeze the funds loaded onto the Account.
7. Termination of Service.
- 7.2 You are entitled to terminate this Service at any time by ceasing all use of the Service, except, however, products purchased on the Service. You can cancel your Account registered to you at any time by following the instructions on the Website.
- 8.1 Agreements. Blizzard may, from time to time, change, modify or update this Agreement with new versions (each a “New TOU”). Those changes will be effective upon prior notice as follows: Blizzard will post notification of any such changes to this Agreement on the website located at http://eu.blizzard.com/en-gb/company/about/termsofuse.html and will post any revised version of this Agreement in this location, and may provide other notice which may include by email, postal mail or pop-up screen. If any future changes to this Agreement are unacceptable to you or cause you to no longer be in compliance with this Agreement, you may cease to use your Account and terminate the Account in accordance with Section 7.2 herein. After expiry of one (1) month following the notification the continued use of the Service by you will mean you accept any and all such changes. With the notification, Blizzard will remind you that your continued use after the expiration of one (1) month following the notification means that you accept any and all changes. The new Agreement shall enter into force at the beginning of the second month following the notification, unless Blizzard Entertainment has received a notification of termination from you by that time.
- 8.2 Software and Services. In an effort to improve its products and services, Blizzard may require that you download and install updates to the Service and to the Games you have installed on your computer. You acknowledge and agree that Blizzard may update the Service and the Games, including the Game client(s) on your computer, with or without notifying you.
- 9.1 Game clients and Service. The Game clients and the Service (including without limitation the Account, and any titles, computer code, themes, objects, characters, character names, stories, dialogue, catch phrases, concepts, artwork, animations, sounds, musical compositions, audio-visual effects, methods of operation, moral rights, documentation, in-game chat transcripts, character profile information, recordings or replays of Games, and the Game client and server software) are copyrighted works owned by Blizzard and its licensors. Blizzard reserves all rights in connection with the Games and the Service, including without limitation the exclusive right to create derivative works. You agree that you will not create any work based on the Games or the Service except as expressly set forth by Blizzard in contest rules, or in Blizzard’s Fan Policies, which include without limitation Blizzard’s Video Policy, set forth on http://eu.blizzard.com/en-gb/company/legal/videopolicy.html and Blizzard’s Fan Art Submission policy located at http://eu.blizzard.com/en-gb/community/fanart/rules.html.
- 9.2 Account. NOTWITHSTANDING ANYTHING TO THE CONTRARY HEREIN, YOU ACKNOWLEDGE AND AGREE THAT YOU SHALL HAVE NO OWNERSHIP OR OTHER PROPERTY INTEREST IN THE ACCOUNT, AND YOU FURTHER ACKNOWLEDGE AND AGREE THAT ALL RIGHTS IN AND TO THE ACCOUNT ARE AND SHALL FOREVER BE OWNED BY AND INURE TO THE BENEFIT OF BLIZZARD. 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.
- 9.3 Virtual Items. Blizzard owns, has licensed, or otherwise has rights to all of the content that appears in the Service or the Games. You agree that you have no right or title in or to any such content, including without limitation the virtual goods or currency appearing or originating in any Game, or any other attributes associated with the Account or stored on the Service. Blizzard does not recognize any purported transfers of virtual property executed outside of a Game, or the purported sale, gift or trade in the “real world” of anything that appears or originates in a Game, unless otherwise expressly authorized by Blizzard in writing.
10. Game Transfers. The Authentication Key that accompanies most Game clients can only be used once, and will connect a Game license to the Account under which it is registered. The transferability of your license to a Game client is governed by the Game EULA; provided, however, that any transfer of the Game client shall have no impact on the Account registered to you, and that Account shall not transfer with the Game client. Purchasers of a license to a used Game client must follow the process detailed on the http://eu.blizzard.com/en-gb/ website, which may require payment of a processing fee.
11. RESTRICTIONS AND CONDITIONS OF USE.
- 11.1 No Violation of Laws. You agree that you will not, in connection with your use of a Game client or the Service, violate any applicable law or regulation.
- 11.2 Misuse of Service. You may not connect to or use the Service in any way not expressly permitted by this Agreement. Without limiting the foregoing, you agree that you will not (a) institute, assist, or become involved in any type of attack, including without limitation denial of service attacks, upon the Service or otherwise attempt to disrupt the Service or any other person’s use of the Service; or (b) attempt to gain unauthorized access to the Service, Accounts registered to other players, or the computer systems or networks connected to the Service.
- 11.3 No Data Mining. You agree that you will not (a) obtain or attempt to obtain any information from the Service or any Game using any method not expressly permitted by Blizzard; (b) intercept, examine or otherwise observe any proprietary communications protocol used by a client or the Service, whether through the use of a network analyzer, packet sniffer or other device; (c) use any third-party software to collect information from or through a Game client or the Service, including without limitation information about your character, any Account registered to you, virtual items, other players, or other Game data.
- 11.4 User Content. “User Content” means any communications, images, sounds, and all the material and information that you upload or transmit through a Game client or the Service, or that other users upload or transmit, including without limitation any chat text. You hereby grant Blizzard a perpetual, irrevocable, worldwide, paid-up, non-exclusive, license, including the right to sublicense to third parties, and right to reproduce, fix, adapt, modify, translate, reformat, create derivative works from, manufacture, introduce into circulation, publish, distribute, sell, license, sublicense, transfer, rent, lease, transmit, publicly display, publicly perform, or provide access to electronically, broadcast, communicate to the public by telecommunication, display, perform, enter into computer memory, and use and practice such User Content as well as all modified and derivative works thereof. To the extent permitted by applicable laws, you hereby waive any moral rights you may have in any User Content.
- 11.5 Collection of Non-Personal Data. Blizzard shall have the right to obtain “non-personal” data from your connection to the Service in order to make certain demographic assumptions regarding the users of Service without any further notice to you.
- 11.6 Content Screening and Disclosure. Blizzard does not, and cannot, pre-screen or monitor all User Content. However, if Blizzard becomes aware of unlawful or illegal User Content, this content will be deleted or access to such content will be blocked.
- 11.7 Real Life Friends Feature and Identity Disclosure. The Service allows you to disclose your identity to other users of the Service through the “Real Life Friends” feature provided you have opted in to this feature. Certain features, such as the Battle.net Voice Chat Client, are only available between users of the Service who have opted in to the Real Life Friends feature. Real Life Friends can see each other’s real name. Your friend will need to approve your request before showing up on your friends list. Please be aware that by sending or accepting a friend request, the real name associated with your account and the character you are logged into will be displayed not only to your friends, but also to all of their Real Life friends. If you are a parent or legal guardian and if you provide your approval to allow your minor child to use your Account, please be aware that your child may opt in to the Real Life Friends Feature and that the real name associated with the Account will be displayed to friends and to all of the friends of friends. You may opt out of the Real Life Friends feature at any time by deleting all Real Life Friends from your Battle.net Account.
12. DISCLAIMER OF WARRANTIES. WITHOUT LIMITING BLIZZARD’S LIABILITY UNDER SECTION 13 BELOW, THE SERVICE IS PROVIDED ON AN “AS IS” AND “AS AVAILABLE” BASIS FOR YOUR USE, WITHOUT WARRANTIES OF ANY KIND, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING WITHOUT LIMITATION THE WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE, TITLE, NON-INFRINGEMENT, AND THOSE ARISING FROM COURSE OF DEALING OR USAGE OF TRADE. BLIZZARD DOES NOT WARRANT THAT YOU WILL BE ABLE TO ACCESS OR USE THE SERVICE AT THE TIMES OR LOCATIONS OF YOUR CHOOSING; THAT THE SERVICE WILL BE UNINTERRUPTED OR ERROR-FREE; THAT DEFECTS WILL BE CORRECTED; OR THAT THE GAME CLIENT OR THE SERVICE ARE FREE OF VIRUSES OR OTHER HARMFUL COMPONENTS.
13. LIMITATION OF LIABILITY; SOLE AND EXCLUSIVE REMEDY; INDEMNIFICATION
- 13.1 Blizzard may only be liable if Blizzard (a) engaged in intentionally damaging conduct; (b) was grossly negligent or (c) is in breach of the requirements of the Product Liability Act according to statutory law. Blizzard may be liable in accordance with statutory law for damages arising as a result of injury to life, limb or health. In any other cases Blizzard is only liable for slight negligence if Blizzard is in breach of a “material” contractual obligation hereunder. “Material” in this sense are obligations which are necessary for the fulfillment of the Agreement, the breach of which would jeopardize the purpose of the Agreement and the compliance with which you may generally trust in. In such cases, Blizzard’s liability will be limited to typical and foreseeable damages; in other cases Blizzard shall not be liable for slight negligence.
14. GOVERNING LAW. This Agreement shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of France.
15. DISCLOSURES; THIRD PARTY FEATURES.
- 15.1 Facebook. If you have a registered a “Facebook Account” you may opt-in to the “Facebook Friends” feature which will allow you to see which of your Facebook friends are registered on the Service. The “Facebook Account” is subject to separate terms and conditions provided by Facebook Inc. Note that if you have a Facebook account, your Facebook friends will be able to associate your screen name with your real name on the Service when they use the Facebook Friends feature. Facebook disclaims all liability it may otherwise incur as a result of this Agreement and/or your use of the Service.
- 15.2 Blizzard Television Service. Upon your association of a World of Warcraft or StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty Game license with your Account, or by ordering any online services related to World of Warcraft or StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty, you shall receive as part of the fees paid for the online services, access to the online game(s) and access to a television service (ESL Turtle TV), which is an IP TV service featuring, among other content, Blizzard games, Blizzard products and other Blizzard related content.
- 16.1 Revisions. This Agreement may only be revised in a writing signed by Blizzard or published by Blizzard on its website.
- 16.2 Assignment. Blizzard may assign this Agreement, in whole or in part, to any person or entity at any time with or without your consent. If you do not agree with such an assignment, you can terminate this Agreement at any time under Section 7.2 above. You may not assign this Agreement without Blizzard’s prior written consent, and any unauthorized assignment by you shall be null and void.
- 16.3 Severability. If any part of this Agreement is determined to be invalid or unenforceable, then that portion shall be severed, and the remainder of the Agreement shall be given full force and effect.
- 16.4 Attorneys’ Fees. In the event any litigation is brought by either party in connection with this Agreement, the prevailing party in such litigation shall be entitled to recover from the other party all the reasonable costs, attorneys’ fees and other expenses incurred by such prevailing party in the litigation.
- 16.6 No Waiver. Our failure to enforce any provision of the TOU shall in no way be construed to be a present or future waiver of such provision, nor in any way affect the right of any party to enforce each and every such provision thereafter. The express waiver by us of any provision, condition or requirement of the TOU shall not constitute a waiver of any future obligation to comply with such provision, condition or requirement.
- 16.7 Notices. All notices given by you or required under the TOU shall be in writing and addressed to: Blizzard Entertainment S.A.S., TSA 60 001, 78143 Vélizy-Villacoublay, France Attn: Law Department.
- 16.8 Equitable Remedies. You hereby agree that Blizzard would be irreparably damaged if the terms of this Agreement were not specifically enforced, and therefore you agree that we shall be entitled, without bond, other security, or proof of damages, to appropriate equitable remedies with respect to breaches of the TOU, in addition to such other remedies as we may otherwise have available to us under applicable laws.
- 16.9 Force Majeure. Blizzard shall not be liable for any delay or failure to perform resulting from causes outside the reasonable control of Blizzard, including without limitation any failure to perform hereunder due to unforeseen circumstances or cause beyond Blizzard’s control such as acts of God, war, terrorism, riots, embargoes, acts of civil or military authorities, fire, floods, accidents, strikes, or shortages of transportation facilities, fuel, energy, labor or materials.