Social media influencers have faced heavy criticism for promoting a ‘loot box’ website.
When anything controversial happens, the high-profile YouTuber Jake Paul isn’t usually too far away. Both Jake and Brian “RiceGum Le” have recently featured a company called Mystery Brand in recent videos, where people exchange money for unidentified prizes. Buyers can then choose to open the boxes and sell on, without receiving the physical items.
The controversy all comes down to gambling laws and whether or not the Mystery Brand website is breaking any laws in their respective countries, or certainly advertising using social media influencers (although these claims have been denied).
As we often see with new enterprises, they find ways of using technology to their advantage, and the legislation will take sometime to catch up and re-categorise these activities, if they are deemed illegal.
I’m not criticising Mystery Brand or saying what they do is illegal, they’ve simply digitalised a practice that has been around for years.
This is what we got when we bought a mystery box or ‘loot box’ from eBay…
- Cost – £17 + £4.89 delivery.
*The item was originally listed for £20, but we made a cheeky offer of £17 and it was accepted.
- Number of items included – 9 items.
- Items included – Playstation 3 game, blu-ray movies, wireless speaker, smartphone gloves, smartphone case with built-in battery, and an alarm clock.
The item description describes the listing as:
“Games consoles, jewellery, dvds, bluetooth headsets, speakers, toys and other items guaranteed.
“Essentially this is a lucky dip that I decide randomly, so good luck!”
All of which, sounds fair enough to us! The majority of the items were sealed in original packaging too.
The seller goes on to add:
“If you end up with an item that doesn’t match the value of the mystery box, please get in touch and we can discuss.
“Message me for any enquires or concerns.”
In terms of a product description, you can’t get anything clearer than that. After all, lucky dips have been around for donkeys years, and you don’t hear them complaining.
Even brands such as FireBox have been getting in on the action…
FireBox offer a range of boxes starting from £29.99 – £34.99 Customers can choose from and “Unusual”, “Booze’, “Foodie”, “Home” or “Gadget” box.
Update – the eBay listing that we bought from has since been removed. I’m not sure what the issue is, as the product description appears fairly accurate to us.
Would you buy a mystery box? It’s just for fun after all…