EA: Banned From Forums? Can't Play Single-Player Game Either

from the overkill dept

Tom Landry was the first of a bunch of you to send in the news that EA has taken forum banning to a new level. Obviously forums ban people all the time for whatever reason, but it appears that EA went way beyond just a forum banning in this case. First, the guy was banned for saying in the comments: "Have you sold your souls to the EA devil?" Seems pretty tame compared to some of the stuff that goes on in plenty of forums. But, whatever. If EA wants to be thin-skinned like that, that's its own insecure decision. Where it goes overboard is that not only did the company ban him from the forums, but it also blocked him from activating a single-player game that he had purchased, Dragon Age II, from BioWare. In the thread where this is discussed, a company rep notes that this is EA's policy, and since BioWare is a part of EA, this was done at a higher level:
EA Community bans come down from a different department and are the result of someone hitting the REPORT POST button. These bans can affect access to your game and/or DLC
That seems ripe for a lawsuit. Selling someone a video game for 50 euros (what the guy says he paid for it), and then telling him he can't play it, even as a single player game on his own computer, because he said something mildly anti-EA in a forum? Honestly, all that really seems to say is that you should never "buy" (yeah, right, you didn't "buy" anything) from EA since they can vindictively make whatever you bought stop working if someone who works there doesn't like you. That seems like a much worse message than some forum person talking about "selling your soul." Update: And of course, once the publicity came out on the story, EA is now claiming it was a glitch and has been fixed. Doesn't change that this appears to be part of EA's official policy, though (also, corrected the name of the game).

Filed Under: bans, bioware, forums, video games
Companies: ea


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  1. icon
    indieThing (profile), 18 Mar 2011 @ 4:44am

    Re: Re:

    As an ex-EA bod myself, who found myself working there for four years, I was pleasantly surprised, as they are nowhere near as evil as I'd always thought. Admittedly, they're not perfect, but this seems to be a common problem with large corporations, who have to answer to share-holders.

    Knowing a lot of the American, Romanian, Indian and UK staff, I'd say this was definitely a coding bug that wasn't found in time. Most staff are passionate gamers who 'get it' and tend to have a fairly tolerant view on file-sharing and restrictive DRM, the trouble seems to mostly comes from the higher execs and share-holders. I can think of one such exec, that has ruined companies before EA and is now continuing his efforts at EA. Once they're in a high position, it's difficult to get rid of them.

    But saying that, even some of the execs 'get it', as they are implementing some of the newer business models by using the power of free with such things as free online games, skill based prize gaming, free trials and other models.

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