Accountability: Xbox Live and The Playstation Network

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Accountability: Xbox Live and The Playstation Network

It was about nine in the morning on Easter Sunday. I was halfway through brushing my teeth when I remembered, quite spontaneously, that on the next day my Xbox Live Gold account would automatically renew for another twelve months. I had received the email from Microsoft a month earlier, warning me they would be using my credit card to take another $80 from my bank account and, at the time, I thought little of it.

Well, no, surprisingly. It turned out I could not disable Gold on the website. I would have to call Microsoft with a telephone if I wanted to prevent Microsoft from spending my money. I live in Australia, and yet I failed to find an Australian number on Microsoft’s website, and I did not want to waste what little money I had calling the American number on Easter Sunday, when I assumed I wouldn’t get an answer anyway. Fortunately, I had another crafty plan up my sleeve. I would just delete my credit card details from my account. They can’t renew my account if I can’t pay for it, can they?

Brendan Keogh is a freelance writer for such publications as Gamasutra, Hyper, Kill Screen, IndustryGamers, Pixel Hunt, and CraftHub. He blogs at and can be found on Twitter @BRKeogh.