Saturday, January 18, 2014

What Parental Controls?

What Parental Controls?

Blizzard Entertainment, in its infinite wisdom, has decided that I have a child. I know this because I discovered a few days ago that parental controls have been set on my account. I don't know what those controls are, of course, since they seem to think I'm the child. So far the only evidence of the controls (and how I even knew they were there) is that I tried to look at the in game shop. I received a warning that I was not allowed access to that feature.

I then played a circular game with Blizzard that started with me trying to figure out what had been done and how to undo it. The instructions eventually led me to submit a request to reset parental controls. So I sent the request. Which, not so promptly, but eventually, was returned as an error message. I submitted a trouble ticket two days ago.

Today I received a reply. Here is one of the funnier requirements. I am required to provide "A legible photocopy of the identification of the current registered account user, displaying the full legal name, date of birth, and the ID's expiration date (if applicable). Acceptable forms of identification for the child are: Passport, Driver's License, State ID, Military ID (with the back photocopied), or Birth Certificate. School IDs are not accepted." Apparently I must validate that I have a child before I can turn off parental controls for the child I DON'T HAVE.

As I was working on this post, I checked in with Battlenet to see if there was an update on the the ticket. The first thing I saw, in large orange letters, was this: "Help! I can't use the in-game shop/Real-Money Auction House anymore!" Apparently, a "recent upgrade to the system" has disabled the in game shop. The explanation notice tried to assure me that it was actually a new feature that I should appreciate - the DEFAULT setting was to turn off access and invoke parental controls. This was all new to me and to everyone else, I assume. The Blizz guy who responded to my ticket must have been in the dark, too. He simply sent me an email telling me my issue was "resolved."

Ok, I got it now. They MEANT to shut down access because, hey, I might be a child. All I have to do now is go to the link where I first activated parental controls. Umm, excuse me, but I NEVER activated parental controls. You, Blizzard, activated them. No, I don't have that email you think I have. You'll send it to me. Go right ahead, but but that part of the circle I've already been around once and it ends in an error message.

Finally, I got this: "If you want to completely remove Parental Controls from your account and you are a legal adult in your country of residence, please contact us for assistance." You know where this is going. "Contact us" sent me right back to the support site. Where I started.

I am now going to try their new Call Back system, where I should get a real person to talk to. The feature was enabled a week ago. I'm sure its working fine. Stay tuned . . .

Well, that didn't take long. The Call Back feature is Offline.

You know, I'm pretty sure that if I had a kid, I'd know about it. Even better, he or she would know exactly how to get around this mess. Me, the parent, certainly doesn't have a clue. Obviously, Blizzard doesn't have a clue, either. They should hire my imaginary child.

There is some good news about all this - I can't access the in game shop, so I won't be tempted to buy anything. So there, Blizz. Oh, and I submitted another ticket.

1 comment:

  1. Maybe your wild youth is finally catching up with you, we've all heard about you sailor types. :)