This site collects stories from people with experience of Sony's customer services. It was inspired by the continuing tales in this thread on RLLMUK, from which some stories are taken.

If you have a similar story, please get in touch! We hope that collecting these stories will help Sony to realise that their awful approach to digital accounts, customer service and denial of standard rights is hurting their business. None of the major video games news sites seem to be interested for some reason!

Note that we will not take anonymous submissions, and submitters remain responsible for the factual accuracy of their stories.

Friday, 29 May 2015

Post-Watchdog tweets

Graham's been curating a Storify list of tweets reacting to the Watchdog programme.  Not great publicity for Sony, it seems.


Thursday, 28 May 2015

Post-Watchdog update

Wow, what a response. Many thanks for all your messages. Many have pointed out that Sony haven't actually said they will change anything, which is pretty awful. They recommended people visit an online security website, which says that you should use two-factor authentication. Oh, Sony.

But the worrying thing is that they are still parroting the line that all transactions and security on a PSN account is the responsibility of the user. This is at best disingenuous and at worst dishonest. What's more, it fails to deal with the basic issues of Sony refusing to issue refunds even when they have stopped content working on the account and console.

I am about to get on a plane for the next 17 hours, but will link to the programme when I can and publish some more thoughts. Thanks again, everyone - it's progress but we're not quite there yet!

We all had issues with Sony's customer service (a compilation post)

With the increased exposure due to the Watchdog programme, people all over the Internet have been commenting on the stories, adding to the initial stories from RLLMUK.  These comments generally fall into four categories:
  • I got a refund so I'm all right Jack
  • Something irrelevant since they haven't read the situation properly
  • Backing up Sony because of some sense of company loyalty
  • Other horror stories
Here are some examples of the last of these.

Agent_Llama on Eurogamer:
My other half bought a game from PSN and, somehow, they managed to charge him 12 times for it. Refused to refund it, even though it's technically impossible to buy a game more than once on PSN. Eventually managed to wrangle vouchers out of them to use on PSN, but they flat refused to refund the excess charges.
wibbl on Eurogamer:
I have been trying to chase up 10 quid that I am owed for a PayPal promotion they were running throughout March that has never been honoured. PayPal actually refunded the money I was owed, but Sony then responded to this by banning my account.
I'm now embroiled in a tedious support saga trying to both get my account re-enabled and my tenner back.
All because two multinational corporations are incapable of running a simple promotion, and both are more interested in pointing the finger at each other than actually protecting their customers.
I was the victim of fraud on PSN. £34 in FIFA points that had been bought abroad. I had to chase them for months to get it back.
I bought a DLC on the wrong store, which doesn't match the version of the game I have. This means I can't use that DLC - and Sony refused to refund me. I don't get it - I'm unable to use the DLC and it was made in error. They can block the license for that DLC on my system, so why not give me my money back? I spent $10 in vain.
Back in October, I used the 'add £50 via paypal and we'll give you £10 extra credit' promotion. After adding the money, PSN didn't credit me. I then contacted Paypal, who blamed Sony, and then Sony, who first claimed the promotion wasn't valid (it was, it had been emailed to me earlier that week) and then blamed Paypal. It took me a total of 9 emails to five different people to get the bottom of it, and even then only after I forwarded them a copy of their own promotional email, then the receipt from my paypal transaction. It was only a tenner, but even so, their immediate answer being 'not pur fault!' when I've just given them £50 and spent hundreds with them on my PSN account over the years was disgusting. My advice is to avoid any Sony/Paypal promotions like the plague.
Sony have terrible customer service; I was on the receiving end of it after my original 'fat' PS3 had the yellow light of death, and the refurbished one they replaced it with had the same yellow light within 24 hours of me receiving it, and the refurbished one the replaced that one with also yellow lighted within another week. It took a few hours of phone calls and a lot of frustration before they eventually agreed to send me a newer model PS3 instead of another refurbished 'fat' one, which clearly had a problem. That replacement is still going strong.
Had similar issue here in Australia. Accidently purchased a PS Vita game on the master account, instead of my kids account , so had to purchase it again (not sure which way around) , either way I asked for a refund of the game I couldn't use. After a few emails, they stopped responding to me. Pathetic customer service.
I bought the monthly plus games through the PS Plus section of the PlayStation website and was charged for one of the games due to a mistake of their pricing. I spent weeks getting in contact with Sony and got nowhere, it was only after I contacted several gaming journalist websites and watchdogs that I very suddenly and randomly got a refund.
I was appalled at Sony's lack of customer service and lack of process for complaints. Each member of staff had a different answer and method to deal with my complaint. It took on average 4 days for an email to be responded to and nearly an hour to get through to a real person on the phone. Every one of their staff admitted the problem was with their website but would not issue a refund or even a credit voucher as it was against their policy.
Back when they gave out the 10% code for the Christmas outage, I accidentally ordered (via the web store) PS3 DLC where I actually wanted the PS4 version. Rang up, not expecting any joy, and was told that there was nothing that could be done about it, even though I hadn't actually downloaded the content at all.
PoliteElliot on Gamespot
In my experience Sony customer service was terrible! Purchases were made on my account fraudulently and I contacted Sony via their website. I reside in Norway and I had to email 3 different customer support addresses, all supplied by Sony, and each time I was asked to try another address! Eventually, unbelievably, I was asked to contact a Film company!!??
"Thank you for contacting Nordisk Film Distribution AS – Official distributor for Sony Computer Entertainment Europe. We will return with more information to you as soon as we receive it from SCEE."
And I never heard anything from them after this ...
Eventually I just gave up - congratulations Sony, cutting down your support costs by making it so ineffective your dissatisfied customers give up. If it was as difficult to make purchases as it is to get customer service Sony would make very little money.

Wednesday, 27 May 2015

I complained about Sony on Watchdog

To be broadcast on Thursday 28 May, at 8pm on BBC1!  Watchdog has interviewed a fair number of the people on this website, investigating the way Sony's customer service is lacking.  The main complainant is Pockets, from RLLMUK, whose post in this thread was the first I uploaded to this blog.

Expect a half-hearted apology and nothing to change.

Update: the BBC's interest has meant that this issue has finally seen some coverage in gaming media.  Gamespot and Eurogamer have run stories, and MCV has picked up the news too.  Most stories originated from a NeoGAF thread and didn't do any more research until posters from RLLMUK contacted them.  This blog has been linked to from a few stories now.  Welcome, all!

Sunday, 24 May 2015

After complaining about refund issues, Sony blocked my son's account as well

Remember this one: http://talesfromsonycs.blogspot.co.uk/2015/02/someone-else-preordered-game-and-i-cant.html ... there's been a bit of an update!

They've just banned or suspended my Son's Sub Account, the one which was under my suspended account, I wonder if this is because of my Watchdog Complaint, too much of coincidence? Anyway well done Sony, one very sad and upset little boy, who now believes he has lost all his PS Vita games, of course you can't get hold of anyone until Monday!

Monday, 18 May 2015

A petition to get Sony to implement two-factor authentication


Please sign this.  It doesn't address every problem, but it would solve a lot of them.  Until Sony offer multi-factor authentication, them telling us that we are fully responsible for the security of our accounts is just a joke.

Sony takes account security less seriously than we do

You would think that when they are dealing with money and credit cards, they should make sure their security is up-to-date.

I didn't verify my new email address but they changed it anyway

So a mate of mine has an old, old PSN account that he signed up for years ago ... and never really used it as he made another with a better name. It's associated with an old email that he doesn't use at all either.

He logged in the other day and found 6 emails from Sony.

First one: Your sign in email has been updated.
Next 4: Please verify your new sign in.
Last one: Your sign in ID has been changed.

The entire process took about two hours.

'Reece O'Donnel' appears to be the hacker, if that is the real name.

Tuesday, 5 May 2015

I took Sony to the Small Claims Court and they settled before the court date

Taken from NeoGAF at http://www.neogaf.com/forum/showthread.php?t=938443 ...

My PSN account got hijacked yesterday. They bought GTA5 on my account and then changed the log in details. I didn't notice this had happened till today, at which point £500 had already left my account! All on PSN games by the looks of it. I've just got off the phone to my bank and cancelled my card to prevent any more charges. Tomorrow I'm going to call Sony and get my account back using the three serial numbers I have for my PS3, PS4 and Vita ...

First update:

Thanks for your recent contact regarding your Sony Entertainment Network (SEN) account.

I understand from our contact that you did not recognise some transactions on your account, and you reported these transactions as unauthorised. As these transactions were made via our online webstore, we're unable to take action against any consoles for processing this purchase. We will however investigate any devices involved where possible and take action where appropriate, however we will be unable to share details of this.

Unfortunately, as the account holder you are responsible for all use of your SEN account, including all purchases, and agree to pay for all orders placed using your SEN account. For this reason, we cannot offer a refund for these transactions - this is outlined in our Terms of Service.

As PlayStation Network has not been compromised, I can assure you that any information stored on our servers is secure. We would highly recommend that you change your account password to re-secure your account. The billing details have already been removed from your account.

For your reference, our Terms of Service can be found here.

I hope this helps, but if you have any other questions please contact PlayStation Support using the contact details below or by replying to this e-mail. Quote reference 141127-005538 and one of our team will be happy to help.

Thank you,
Called them up and they said my only option is to get my bank to do a chargeback, which will probably lead to my account being banned and maybe my consoles too.

Looks like I'm seeking legal action; I can't let £598 slide.

Second update:

I sent a lengthy formal complaint letter to Sony a couple of weeks later explaining my issue. They finally got back to me (via phone as well); they explained how I must have misunderstood their previous contact with me (in a really condescending way) and reiterated their EULA saying how it's my responsibility to keep my account secure; as there hasn't been a breach of PSN the access of my account was my responsibility. They also stated that after goods have been transferred I am not entitled to a refund after said transaction has taken place. They also insisted that they comply 100% with trading standards regulations. I had them email me to confirm they had received my complaint.

I want to take this further if I'm honest; I'll probably evaluate my options and see what I can do through the legal system.

Third update:

Good News Everyone!

I went through the small claims court and they settled before it went to court. 

I got my money back! its ridiculous that it took 6 months to get it sorted however...