Multiplayer caught up with Jason Gibson, the lawyer for three Texas residents that have filed a lawsuit against Microsoft for the problems that began plaguing Xbox Live at the end of 2007. Gibson was quick to dismiss the notion that his clients were merely trying to "get rich" and that the Live problems are "to them, a real issue." Gibson explains that Shannon Smith, on of the three plaintiffs, contacted him after receiving no response from Microsoft regarding Xbox Live's issues. Gibson explains that a class action lawsuit is the only method for dealing with large companies, saying, "When you have one person who is mad and they can't get a response, and they can't get their complaints addressed by a company like Microsoft, the only way to get their attention is in numbers." Gibson further asserts that Microsoft must have anticipated the rapid influx of Live subscribers at the end of 2007, which is what the company blames for the persistent problems. Microsoft, thanks to a recent gag order
, will not comment on the status of Xbox Live due to the pending litigation, though they will be offering a free Xbox Live Arcade game
to Live members as an apology.
So, would fixing the problems end the suit? Not according to Gibson, who claims that he has received emails from hundreds of gamers, most of them in support of the cause, and that fifty more plaintiffs have now joined the case. While the plaintiffs undoubtedly want the service fixed, they are also seeking damages in excess of $5 million for the money spent during the outages and other problems. So, given that there are 10 million Live members
now, and assuming Gibson wins the suit, we're really looking forward to our $0.50 check from Microsoft.