PayPal is been vilified countless times on the internet, including by our very own Editor-in-Chief. However, compared to what Google Checkout has just done to small indie Project Zomboid makes PayPal looks like a cute kitten jumping on a couple of butterflies on a sunny April afternoon while you lazily look at it from under a shade, sipping some mojito. Google Checkout has frozen and banned Project Zomboid’s account (which had 80% of the game’s preorder money) and has refused to answer any questions regarding the sudden derailment of the service.
The indie studio was initially beset with problems from PayPal who gave them a warning a month in advance so that they could remove all the cash that they could. After an email or two the problem was solved. Regardless, the developers decided to put up a Google Checkout widget which turned out to be the more popular option. However, Google Checkout does not offer the Pay What You Want model so they put up these options:-
Preorder Project Zomboid
Preorder Project Zomboid + £5 Donation
Preorder Project Zomboid + £10 Donation
Preorder Project Zomboid + £15 Donation
It turned out that there is a clause in the Terms of Service where Google Checkout strongly relates the term Donationwith Charity, while the developers meant Tipor Extra Paymentor something. Seeing as this was against the TOS, Google Checkout stopped providing service and access to their money.
When did Google Checkout go about doing this? A whole month later after a huge amount of the preorder money had already filled the Google Checkout coffers. Why did they wait for so long? That’s the question.
When the developer, Indie Stone, sent a really long and angry email to Google Checkout, they were presented with this cold and impersonal reply:-
We advise buyers to contact sellers directly to resolve any order-related issues.
Really, Google? I hope this does not continue in the futureâ€¦