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5 Million Dollar Magic Key Lawsuit Filed.

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  • 5 Million Dollar Magic Key Lawsuit Filed.

    So the OC Register (paywall) and various other Disney based media are reporting that a lawsuit has been filed on behalf of MK holders alleging deceptive advertising claiming Disney deceived them in to believing they would be able to use their passes. I am curious as to how they came up with that figure and who it’s actually representing, i.e, where would that money go? Something tells me this will not be the last of these.

    Update:the case is being filed by an individual MK holder looking for others to join and hoping to make this a class action suit.
    Starcade
    Old Skateboarder
    Last edited by Starcade; 12-16-2021, 07:58 PM.
    Disneyland Fan since the 70's

  • #2
    I'm totally on board with this! Where do I sign up to join in???

    Comment


    • #3
      This is wonderful news. It was only a matter of time before a lawsuit came about. I'm totally onboard as well.
      "If you can dream it, you can do it" - Walt Disney

      Comment


      • #4
        Well
        Another BAD PRESS for Di$neyimo
        Soaring like an EAGLE !

        Comment


        • #5
          Disney deserves it, but oh boy is that gonna be hard, because Disney is always a massive stickler to legal jargon and have probably the greatest lawyers on the planet. Because of that, I sadly don't see Disney having to pay anything since they probably put a ton of terms and conditions to counteract this lawsuit.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by jish5555 View Post
            Disney deserves it, but oh boy is that gonna be hard, because Disney is always a massive stickler to legal jargon and have probably the greatest lawyers on the planet. Because of that, I sadly don't see Disney having to pay anything since they probably put a ton of terms and conditions to counteract this lawsuit.
            Just the Image and concept ,that Disney in a Lawsuit
            over there AP's at there parks....is going to hurt ,
            and it is another add on to there , BAD PRESS list !
            IMO
            Soaring like an EAGLE !

            Comment


            • #7

              Disney likely won't lose the lawsuit, but the bad publicity will cost them plenty -- especially if the plaintiff refuses to settle and it goes to trial.

              Excerpts from the Orange County Register story:

              _________________________

              Disneyland passholder lawsuit alleges Magic Key deceptively advertises no blockout dates

              by Brady MacDonald
              December 16, 2021

              Disneyland deceived its most loyal fans by artificially limiting theme park capacity and blocking passholders with “no blockout” annual passes from making reservations, a lawsuit filed against Walt Disney Parks and Resorts alleges.

              The $5 million suit filed on behalf of all annual passholders alleges Disneyland relegated them to “second class” ticket holders by artificially limiting Magic Key reservations and the number of passholders that can visit on any given day....

              “We intend to respond as the case proceeds in court,” according to a Disneyland spokesperson....

              Disneyland sold out of the top-priced Dream Key in late October amid howls from angry passholders because of the widespread lack of reservations available for the $1,399 pass with no blockout dates. The $949 Believe Key sold out in late November. The $649 Enchant Key and $399 Imagine Key remain available.

              Magic Key reservations have been frequently unavailable on weekends and near-term dates stretching for weeks have been completely “sold out” to annual passholders still looking for a reservation. In contrast, the daily admission ticket calendar often shows availability on virtually all weekdays, weekends and holidays — with a few near-term dates “sold out.”

              The lawsuit alleges that Nielsen purchased a $1,399 Disneyland Dream Key annual pass with no blockout dates in September, but was unable to make theme park reservations for certain dates in November.

              When Nielsen tried to make reservations in October, she was disappointed to learn Disneyland had already blocked out Dream Key passholders on many days and all weekends in November, the suit alleges.

              “Given that Disney advertised and promised that there would be no ‘blockouts’ for Dream Keyholders, Ms. Nielsen was surprised,” according to the suit.

              As a frequent Disneyland visitor, Nielsen thought it was unlikely so many dates would be sold out in November. She checked the reservation availability calendar for single-day visitors and found out that neither Disneyland or Disney California Adventure were sold out on [m]any days in November.

              “The problem was not that Disney had reached its capacity and therefore could not provide reservations to its Dream Key passholders,” according to the suit. “The problem was that Disney had decided to block out reservations so that they were only available to new purchases and were not available to Dream Key passholders.”

              Nielsen believed when she bought the Dream Key annual pass that passholders would be allowed to make reservations if Disneyland and DCA had capacity, according to the suit.

              “Disney appears to be limiting the number of reservations available to Dream Key passholders on any given day in order to maximize the number of single day and other passes that Disney can sell,” according to the suit.

              Nielsen reasonably believed “no blockouts” meant she could use her Dream Key as long as the parks were not at capacity, according to the suit.

              “This is a far cry from what Disney advertised to consumers and from what Disney sold to its customers,” the suit said.

              Nielsen would not have bought the Dream Key annual pass if she had known so many dates would be unavailable, according to the suit.

              “Ms. Nielsen did not know — and had no way of knowing — that the Dream Key was, essentially, a ‘second class’ ticket with limited availability because Disney had reserved an unknown majority of the available reservations for single day or other full price ticket purchases,” the suit said....


              _________________________


              "Disneyland is often called a magic kingdom because
              it combines fantasy and history, adventure and learning,
              together with every variety of recreation and fun,
              designed to appeal to everyone."

              - Walt Disney

              "Disneyland is all about turning movies into rides."
              - Michael Eisner

              "It's very symbiotic."
              - Bob Chapek

              Comment


              • #8
                If someone bought a pass once the system was in place and the days available were viewable online then it might legally fall on them, caveat emptor -- "let the buyer beware."

                But if they can get a judge to consider Disney's actions "bad faith" then there might be some validity to the case (from what I can tell reading about "bad faith" in contracts on the internet - I am not a lawyer).

                Certainly the early purchasers before the system fell into place might have had a valid assumption that days would be available on an on-going basis. The precedent of the Flex pass seemed to bear this out. Flex passholders never seemed to have complaints about notoriously bad availability like passholders are experiencing now -- at more than double the price of the Flex.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I think there's an argument to be made regarding the marketed "no blackout dates" pass. They could argue that it was deceptive to sell a pass with that sort of wording since there are two reservation calendars: one showing the availability for APs, and the other showing availability for ticketed guests. It just depends on what Disney constitutes as a "blackout" day (i.e. if a day is still available for full-priced purchase, why is the AP locked out?)

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Captain Andy View Post
                    I think there's an argument to be made regarding the marketed "no blackout dates" pass. They could argue that it was deceptive to sell a pass with that sort of wording since there are two reservation calendars: one showing the availability for APs, and the other showing availability for ticketed guests. It just depends on what Disney constitutes as a "blackout" day (i.e. if a day is still available for full-priced purchase, why is the AP locked out?)
                    The dates weren't blacked out. Blacked out means never available to that pass. They were available - in the thousands - for those dates, it's just that others reserved them first.
                    "Disneyland is a work of love. We didn't go into Disneyland just with the idea of making money." - ​Walt Disney

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      "Oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive."

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                      • #12
                        I don't see how this can possibly succeed legally (disclaimer: I am not a lawyer!) but just from the point of view of PR I think it could be a very big deal.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by BasilOregano View Post
                          I don't see how this can possibly succeed legally (disclaimer: I am not a lawyer!) but just from the point of view of PR I think it could be a very big deal.
                          ^^^This.

                          The disclaimer is pretty clear to me.

                          To enter a theme park, each Magic Key holder must have a theme park reservation in addition to a valid Magic Key pass. Park reservations are limited, and subject to availability, public health orders, and applicable pass blockout dates, and are not guaranteed for any specific dates or park. Magic Key pass blockout dates and admission dates that can be visited with a park reservation will vary by pass type and theme park. Additionally, park reservations may not be available on select holidays for certain theme parks. Park reservations for select dates and parks may be made available on a rolling basis. Check for updated availability. A Magic Key pass does not guarantee admission or access to any experience, attraction or offering or to park entry.
                          Also definitely not a lawyer, but the only angle I could see working is that day passes were still available on certain days, but "park reservations are limited...and are not guaranteed," seemingly gives Disney a pretty wide berth.

                          but I am all here for the negative press. Bad PR for the Chapek regime is a plus, regardless of the ultimate outcome. News reports don't necessarily circle back months/years later when the class action is done, but the lawsuit might still hang in people's minds.
                          JLee1226
                          MiceChatter
                          Last edited by JLee1226; 12-17-2021, 09:35 AM. Reason: Typo
                          Restore Walt's Disneyland: bring back the Aluminum Hall of Fame!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I think everyone is saying it, but to be clear, the issue is this statement:

                            "Nielsen reasonably believed “no blockouts” meant she could use her Dream Key as long as the parks were not at capacity, according to the suit."

                            Disney will argue the literal definition of blockouts, saying that Dream Key members can attend any day they so wish, as long as reservations are available. But is it deceptive? Business and Professions Code Section 17200 prohibits any "unlawful, unfair, or fraudulent business practice." Not sure if Neilsen identified this statute in the lawsuit, but I would bet it's in there. Perhaps it was unfair for Disney to not be more explicit on impacted its reservations system was. There might be a fraudulent act, which under 17200 is a lot looser definition than in normal "fraud" found in breach of contract actions. https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/f...0.&lawCode=BPC

                            It should be a fun case to watch. As others identified, this is going to get a lot of press. The complaints we have seen on this board will now be played out in a broader public arena and will likely need to be reevaluated by Disney to see whether they should consider making changes.

                            IMO a "Dream Key" should also include a wide-open reservation system. But at $1399 probably not enough profit. (Tongue-in-Cheek) Perhaps a new tier, the Super-Duper Ultimate Dream Key, for $4999?
                            kjorgensen43
                            Cal. Cent. Coast'r
                            Last edited by kjorgensen43; 12-17-2021, 09:00 AM. Reason: Clarity

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by kjorgensen43 View Post
                              IMO a "Dream Key" should also include a wide-open reservation system. But at $1399 probably not enough profit. (Tongue-in-Cheek) Perhaps a new tier, the Super-Duper Ultimate Dream Key, for $4999?
                              Heck they could get more than that. What they could do is auction them off to the highest bidders (give a percentage of the intake to charity and give a number of passes to some Make-a-wish families too so as not to look too greedy). What do you think they would go for then?
                              L + L = R

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                From the T&Cs;

                                "Park reservations are limited, and subject to availability, public health orders, and applicable pass blockout dates, and are not guaranteed for any specific dates or park."

                                "A Magic Key pass does not guarantee admission or access to any experience, attraction or offering or to park entry."



                                I'd say that was crystal clear. If someone chose not to read the fine print or decided to ignore it because of "the way it was in the Before Times", that's not Disney's fault.


                                Technically, Disney didn't 'block out' the passholders who were not able to make reservations on a given day. Disney released a number of days and those days were snapped up by other passholders.



                                "Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass, it's about learning to dance in the rain.​"

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  You're correct legally on a reservation by reservation basis.

                                  However, holistically there are very few if any reservations on Friday-Sunday looking forward 30-60 days (and sometimes even 90). That's where the problem occurs. Implications are that you should be able to get some reservations for prime days for the $1,399 pass. Charging $1,399 with the "intent" that most Fri-Sun won't be available and you advertise no blackouts is definitely unethical and probably false advertising.

                                  Again, not a lawyer but that's where the suit and especially public opinion and press are going to have a challenge. This could get ugly over the next 3-6 months. $$$$$$ is the only Disney driver since Chapek took over. Clearly not a strategist but a cash cow maker. Long term will be devastating unless they right the ship.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by Stormy View Post
                                    From the T&Cs;

                                    "Park reservations are limited, and subject to availability, public health orders, and applicable pass blockout dates, and are not guaranteed for any specific dates or park."

                                    "A Magic Key pass does not guarantee admission or access to any experience, attraction or offering or to park entry."
                                    I think the issue here is that availability (for day tickets) DOES exist. Is there anything in the fine print about separate calendars of availability based on admission type?

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      And there are still no blackout days for Dream Key holders.

                                      Just another passholder who didn't read the contract and was so happy to get back into Disneyland.
                                      "And yes, we implore EVERYBODY to follow the park rules. Having off-ride footage is great, but any still photo's or video's taken ON the coasters at SFMM are strictly against the rules. They are there for your (and everybody's) safety." "Six Flags doesn't allow ANY loose articles on their coasters, and they don't allow video taping on their coasters. " BUT, "​ This is not true. Six Flags does not allow ANY On-Ride video or pictures on the rides. The ONLY way is if you get explicit permission from Park Management." ???

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by Captain Andy View Post
                                        I think there's an argument to be made regarding the marketed "no blackout dates" pass. They could argue that it was deceptive to sell a pass with that sort of wording since there are two reservation calendars: one showing the availability for APs, and the other showing availability for ticketed guests. It just depends on what Disney constitutes as a "blackout" day (i.e. if a day is still available for full-priced purchase, why is the AP locked out?)
                                        What days are blocked out though from Dream Key would be my argument.
                                        "And yes, we implore EVERYBODY to follow the park rules. Having off-ride footage is great, but any still photo's or video's taken ON the coasters at SFMM are strictly against the rules. They are there for your (and everybody's) safety." "Six Flags doesn't allow ANY loose articles on their coasters, and they don't allow video taping on their coasters. " BUT, "​ This is not true. Six Flags does not allow ANY On-Ride video or pictures on the rides. The ONLY way is if you get explicit permission from Park Management." ???

                                        Comment

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