Big Fish Social Casino Targeted by New Class Action Lawsuit in Washington State
Posted on: February 20, 2019, 02:37h.
Last updated on: February 20, 2019, 02:37h.
Seattle-based social casino Big Fish is facing a fresh class-action lawsuit that accuses it of operating “illegal online casino games.”
The play-money site was hit by several similar lawsuits last year after a federal court in Seattle ruled that the virtual chips used in Big Fish’s casino games could be considered to be “something of value,” which meant they could be defined as gambling under Washington State law.
The state defines gambling as “risking something of value on the outcome of a contest of chance or a future contingent event not under the person’s control or influence to receive something of value in the event of a certain outcome.”
Big Fish to Fry?
The new suit names Big Fish’s former owner, Churchill Downs, and new owner, Aristocrat Technologies, as defendants. The social games developer was acquired by Australian slots manufacturer Aristocrat in January 2018 — three months before the court’s ruling — for almost $1 billion.
While Big Fish’s games are ostensibly free to play, extra chips can be acquired through in-app purchases.
Curiously, the new lawsuit accuses Big Fish of using practices similar to casinos to reap “huge profits” while never paying out anything of monetary value — an accusation that appears to be self-defeating, since the virtual chips players win must have “value” in order to be considered gambling.
As we allege in our complaint, the mobile gambling industry, by design, preys on consumers by bringing additive gambling opportunities directly into their homes,” Christopher Dore, an attorney representing the plaintiff, Florida resident Manasa Thimmegowda, told Komo News.
“We look forward to proving that companies are aware that many of their customers fall victim to these gambling games, with significant negative impacts on their lives financially and otherwise.”
The original case against Big Fish was brought in 2015 by former player Cheryl Kater, who claimed she had spent $1,000 topping up chips on the site. She argued Big Fish violated several Washington State statutes, including the Recovery of Money Lost at Gambling Act and the Washington Consumer Protection Act.
The case was tossed in 2016, but Kater appealed. The resulting verdict was a shock to the social gaming industry and could have ramifications not just for social casinos but for any game that employs microtransactions and an element of chance.
In April last year, Aristocrat vowed to work with Churchill Downs to appeal the verdict, emphasizing there were “meritorious legal and factual defenses against [Kater’s] allegations and requests for relief.”
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Last Comments ( 82 )
Want to file against BF casino ! Took thousands from Apple ID . Taking this to Supreme Court,
I HAD 2 accounts on 2 different I phones.. One account was a TIer 15 and the other a Tier (. I let my friend play on the second account on my second phone. when doing a ticket with the ZENDESK under the second account 33868640 with the friend code clearly stated in the tickets, as required. they comped my first account 16512185. sent me a email that they had given me some free chips. i responded to the ticket saying that i did not receive any free chips on the friend code indicated in the ticket . this happened 2 times by the poorly managed Customer Service. So what do they do, because they messed up. the BANNED both my account. I have been sending emails for months, about BFC stuck on my phone, i cant download anything for BFC from the App store . apparently they have no technical people to resolve this issue. meanwhile BFC has my ipone being held hostage(and this is a new iphone), not the phone that they banned me from (16512185) , with injustice, by a incompetent Customer Service person messed up by BFC. thousands of dollars spend to play, i enjoyed playing for a customer service person to play"im in charge" on my account. In all my email and Zen Desk tickets, they never respond on how to fix this issue. they never turn it over to a technical person., or maybe there is no technical person on the Zendesk. also a FYI, im not the first person they have done this to, banning a n account with VIP LEVEL 15 or higher. all i wanted was it resolved, and the ignore me, my tickets and emails for almost 6 months now.
The original "crators" of big fish casino were fair and generous. These crooks jumps reels, speed up the reels, have icons disappear! All dirty trick to cheat & steal. I wroye in my social description that I hatwd them & missed good old Big Fish so they blocked it! Also, if by luck we end up in a room that actually gives oayouts we get kick out!! The message:" your spins have been interrupted. Returning you to main lobby!!! It is totally disgisting ! Crooks exoerts! Wjy are they NOT SYOPOED?! Paying high taxes???? Also. Takes approximately 7 days fir ONE level up. ALL reules have been changed! No more gold coins .... Vault amounts co tinously change. If you win some coins..... Pay in the vaults is LOWER! BRING US BACK OUR BIG FISH !!!! SUIT ACTION??? YES!!!
Just commented and it didn’t post. But I would love to be part of this rigged app that I too have fallen victim too. They are thieves and rob those that just want to have fun.
I am another victim to Big Fish Casino. Have spent thousands on chips without reaping rewards. The casino games are definitely set to allow the billionaires to receive the jps and never buy chips. They have also allowed numerous players to have multiple accounts that allow the players to transfer chips between accounts, Thus eliminating the need to purchase. I am here to tell you that a real casino has better odds then this app that pays fake money but reaps the riches of their players addiction! Total scam app and would love to see this app shut down or run fairly.
I too have spent thousands and thousands and noticed my algorithms had changed as well. Countless emails to customer service with smug comebacks. These people are thieves and prey on hard working people! I would love to be part of this class action lawsuit as well!
i toooooooo have become a victim of this loosing app ... they say odds are the same which is crap !!! i hve spent thousands jst to hve a lil fun .!!!! i know people with hundreds of billions in which i think they are bfc employees to mke us buyers think we can win like tht !! this app is shady and a crook is behind it alll.. i would love to take part in this lawsuit . i get it’s gambling but they are not fair to buyers !!!!!!!!! i get you can’t win alll the time !!! but i never win when i buy !!!! and i looose when i don’t buy ., i think i’m blacklisted and bfc knows i buy and expects it now . i’m alll in with this suit
I want in on the lawsuit also have lost $1000 of dollars trying to win fake money it’s rigged for sure
I agree BF has robbed me of thousands and the only response you get is the odds are the same for everyone
You purchase coins you lose. You don’t purchase coins you lose. There are too many “specials” run almost every day geared to make you lose coins in an effort to get you to purchase more. Bronze Vault Boost, Purchase Kickbacks, Sale Days, High Bet Reels, etc. all taking coins. No one wins, everyone loses. The only way to win is to not play. Best to delete this app and save for your children’s college education.
Big fish jackpot city casino they skin thw cat every
I too have been a customer of BFC for over 10 yrs and have spent thousands in purchases and since I haven’t purchased lately I have been hit with a losing streak.... they don’t care about they’re customers all they care about is the $$$$$ they make..... it’s pathetic and ridiculous and I am offended by this app making me look stupid for purcahsing fake chips to constantly lose them within 5 mins.... this app is a joke!!!! Me too I want part in this class action.... they deserve to be punished for fake advertisement also.... their ads like BOOSTER BUNNY.... says they’ll give u 50% of ur chips back if you lose your chips quickly.... just a way to get ppl to purchase and then they don’t payout.... or another one I’m a VIP player and every Monday they give you free chips.... BUT those chips don’t last long your lucky to get 10 mins out of playing they program slots so you lose everything they gave you for free so you can purchase more it all BS....
This is one of the worst addictive playing apps in the world which has caused a lot of mental distress and pray on people who just want to enjoy a game and not have to feel robbed.
I want to be part of this! I have lost more than $100,000 in 3 years of playing this game because of being targeted and having my account blocked - they have continued to abuse me and target me also because of my age. Please help me!!! I need to be part of thid
I too have fallen a victim to BFC. In over 9 years of playing, I have spent thousands and after purchases, my algorithms are changed and fixed for me to lose in hopes of more purchases. I have quit buying for months now and being punished by fixed algorithms to never win. As I read ppl’s status, everyone is feeling the same about this app.