In October 2017 Epic Games began a series of lawsuits against two prolific cheaters in Fortnite. One of these turned out to be a 14-year-old boy, which resulted in a letter from the boy’s mother being used as evidence to dismiss the suit. Epic have now responded by saying the points in the mother’s letter are not valid and are seeking default judgment in the case.
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The mother’s letter can be read in full here, via TorrentFreak. In it she says the game’s terms and conditions require parental consent for minors to play the game, which she claims she did not give. She also suggests Epic cannot prove that her son’s actions resulted in modifications or profit loss, and that they illegally released his name.
In Epic’s response, they break down the letter’s main arguments and claim they are either “irrelevant” or incorrect. In regards to his status as a minor, they write “[this] alleges that Epic has failed to state a claim for breach of contract under North Carolina law. This is not correct.”
Epic cite a case from 2008 where four high school students sued a software company for copyright infringement, which was thrown out because the user agreement was cited as a valid contract the students entered into. They moved for the ‘infancy defence’ due to their age, but this was denied because the court said “the infancy defense [can’t be used] to void their contractual obligations while retaining the benefits of the contract.”
Epic are claiming “the same principle applies here to the same result”, as they say the defendant continued to play Fortnite even after the alleged cheating. Consequently they say the court should deny the defendant’s request that the case be dismissed and move for a default judgment, as they previously attempted.
The other user named in the lawsuit, Charles ‘Joreallean’ Vraspir, had to sign an agreement that required him to refrain from ever carrying out copyright infringement or cheating again, with a fine of $5000 if this agreement was breached.
We’ll have more on this as it develops.