EA: We Have Never Taken A Position, Either Way, On SOPA Or PIPA

from the but-should-they dept

As a follow up to our post this morning concerning the status of EA (and Sony and Nintendo) concerning the false report that the three had quietly removed their support of SOPA, we spoke with someone at EA who made it clear that the company has not stated an opinion either way on either SOPA or PIPA.
In September, we joined 400 other companies and associations in a letter asking Congress to explore legislative solutions to piracy. However we NEVER expressed an opinion on any of the specific proposals that have been drafted.
That's what I had assumed prior to my post, but now it's official.

That said, as people have pointed out, EA is a major member of the ESA, and the ESA is listed as a current supporter (pdf) though they were not on the original supporter list.

Separately, while the US Chamber of Commerce letter that EA refers to does not directly support SOPA or PIPA, it certainly implies that the companies would like this kind of legislation. I recognize why EA would like to stay out of making a definitive statement either way on these bills, but it still seems to reflect poorly on the company in the long run. By now these bills have been out for quite some time, and the company surely has had a chance to review them. It seems like it should be willing to make a direct statement one way or the other on how it feels about the bills. The original story may have been wrong, but not stating a position on the bill seems like a cop out to avoid pissing people (on either side) off.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 3rd, 2012 @ 2:55pm

    While everyone jumped on the bash Ocean Marketing bandwagon there is something to consider. EA has been giving its customers the finger for a long time. The only other companies that I think can even hold a candle to them in treating paying customers like crap is Activision and Ubisoft.

     

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      AzureSky (profile), Jan 4th, 2012 @ 9:45am

      Re:

      EA is far better then Ubi and Activison, Not that Im a big fan of EA but, their support is better, they treat people better, Origin sucks, them pulling new titles from steam due to greed (wanted 100% cut of their DLC sales)

      Activision has flat out said they will milk the pc gamer for all they are worth, thats why their titles stay at such a high price for so long.

      Ubi on the other hand decided to treat all gamers as thieves and pirates and put this stupidly broken always online drm on their titles, then accuse people who called complaining about it of being pirates....

      they then decided to remove it due to poor sales and complaints, but slapped pc gamers in the face by saying they wouldnt be putting out some highely anticipated titles on pc because "95% of pc gamers would just pirate it", yet they still blame piracy for poorer then expected sales....maby they should look at the fact that around 90% of their games are poorly done console ports.....put out quality games without drm hassles and watch your sales soar.

       

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    bjupton (profile), Jan 3rd, 2012 @ 3:08pm

    Well, I wish I hadn't already fired EAs sorry ass.

    Naw, not really. They are fucknuts. Good riddance to bad rubbish.

     

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    Pixelation, Jan 3rd, 2012 @ 3:09pm

    Setup

    "It seems like it should be willing to make a direct statement one way or the other on how it feels about the bills. "

    "Hey EA, here's a stick and there's a beehive. Go poke it."

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 3rd, 2012 @ 3:12pm

    C'mon, the bills, managers amendments offered; amendments and future amendments and negotiations make it virtually impossible to take a definitive position. There are ardent supporters of the strictest copyright enforcement who will withdraw their support and moderate opponents who will change sides if certain modifications are made. Conceptually, both supporters and opponents of the current version of the legislation generally agree that piracy is a problem that needs to be addressed. It's not unreasonable for a prudent company to withhold judgement until a bill is in more final form.

     

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      identicon
      S, Jan 3rd, 2012 @ 8:56pm

      Re:

      This is just mealymouthed bullshit; you're attempting to slip by the bald-faced (and unsupported) assertion that 'piracy is a problem that needs to be addressed'.

      More subtle than the average shilling, tho: 6/10

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Jan 3rd, 2012 @ 9:08pm

        Re: Re:

        Look at opponents testimony (i.e. Google). Look at comments by Lofgren, Wyden, Issa, Chafitz, Polis, etc. Look at statements by EFF, CDT and PK. They've all said piracy needs to be addressed. I don't know why you think that's "unsupported"

         

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      Anonymous Coward, Jan 5th, 2012 @ 7:59am

      Re:

      "Piracy is a problem that needs to be addressed": have you taken into account HOW MANY times Congress has already addressed it? And what the state of enforcement is? If you think the goal is no piracy, that's ridiculous. That's like saying the goal is no speeding, no shoplifting, no breaches of contract. The question of the current legislation is whether we create ridiculous rules in search of a vain goal.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 3rd, 2012 @ 3:14pm

    What is EA's official position on strip mining? What about their official position on Monetary policy, are they in favor of a strong dollar, a weaker dollar? My point is that these are all things that might affect the company but they are not obligated to take a stance on every position. They are a business, not a political action committee.

     

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    AG Wright (profile), Jan 3rd, 2012 @ 3:21pm

    Upside for EA

    Where is the upside for EA? If they support then even more people will hate them.
    If, on the other hand, they declare their dislike of the bill then they alienate the people in the industry that they may need to cooperate with later.

     

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      btrussell (profile), Jan 3rd, 2012 @ 3:26pm

      Re: Upside for EA

      With no cooperation from the consumer, there is no EA.

       

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      bjupton (profile), Jan 3rd, 2012 @ 3:27pm

      Re: Upside for EA

      Translated:

      Why should they do the right thing for their customers when they will later need to collabarate with other people in the industry against their customers?

      Sounds like a reason to dust off some ol' anti-trust laws to me. Or, you know, do the right thing.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Jan 3rd, 2012 @ 6:08pm

        Re: Re: Upside for EA

        People that pirate aren't the kind of "customers" EA should be concerned with, despite the "pirates buy more" meme; nobody believes that bs anyway.

         

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          bjupton (profile), Jan 3rd, 2012 @ 7:29pm

          Re: Re: Re: Upside for EA

          There are a large number of people who, for one reason or another, will not admit to reality no matter how blatant the lie.

          All we've got are facts, figures and actual data.

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Jan 3rd, 2012 @ 8:18pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Upside for EA

            You have no "data" that says "pirates buy more".

            You have surveys that say that.

            Pirates steal things. I fully expect they lie on surveys also.

            Only a sucker would believe otherwise.

             

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              BeeAitch (profile), Jan 4th, 2012 @ 1:01pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Upside for EA

              "Pirates steal things."

              Correct. Infringers on copy'right' don't steal, though, they just copy things, leaving the original intact.

              The dictionary is your friend...

               

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          Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2012 @ 7:29am

          Re: Re: Re: Upside for EA

          You are making the mistake of conflating people who oppose SOPA with people who pirate software. These groups might have some overlap, but there are a great many people who oppose SOPA who do not infringe on software or copyright.

          SOPA is a bad bill. There are many reasons to oppose it other than "piracy" and any company that supports it deserves to suffer the wrath of their former customers.

           

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      DH's Love Child (profile), Jan 3rd, 2012 @ 3:39pm

      Re: Upside for EA

      Which all points to they support the bills but aren't saying so publicly. They want to give the illusion to customers that they don't. I would bet my favorite hat that if we could get a bug on the wall in their boardroom when they discuss these bills, that they support them wholeheartedly.

       

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    FM Hilton, Jan 3rd, 2012 @ 5:17pm

    Of course they support SOPA-but don't ask them

    It's easy to say that you don't support something in public while wholeheartedly cheering for it in private.

    EA is more than capable of being two-faced liars, and they're aware of their public persona.

    This way they give new meaning to the word "weasel".

     

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    Jon Lawrence (profile), Jan 3rd, 2012 @ 6:44pm

    yeah, weird, neither has my "guild"

    As it stands, I can't find any official position from the Producers Guild of America either. I asked for one on their Twitter stream, no answer yet; but don't expect one. It would be good to hear if we have one so I can hasten my exit;)

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Jan 3rd, 2012 @ 9:12pm

      Re: yeah, weird, neither has my "guild"

      I'm sure you'll be missed Jon. What was the last thing you produced?

       

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        Mike Masnick (profile), Jan 4th, 2012 @ 2:08am

        Re: Re: yeah, weird, neither has my "guild"

        I'm sure you'll be missed Jon. What was the last thing you produced?


        I always find it amazing that the people who position themselves of supporters of creativity are the FIRST to bash those who actually work in the creative industries the second they disagree with you.

        Amazing. But telling.

         

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          identicon
          Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2012 @ 7:26am

          Re: Re: Re: yeah, weird, neither has my "guild"

          I always find it amazing that the people who position themselves of supporters of technology are the FIRST to bash those who actually work in the technology industries the second they disagree with you.

          Amazing. But telling.

          http://www.techdirt.com/blog/?tag=daniel+castro

           

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            Mike Masnick (profile), Jan 4th, 2012 @ 11:26am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: yeah, weird, neither has my "guild"

            I always find it amazing that the people who position themselves of supporters of technology are the FIRST to bash those who actually work in the technology industries the second they disagree with you.

            Amazing. But telling.

            http://www.techdirt.com/blog/?tag=daniel+castro


            Haha. Daniel Castro doesn't work in the tech industry. Sorry, but a "policy analyst" is not a technologist.

             

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              identicon
              Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2012 @ 11:46am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: yeah, weird, neither has my "guild"

              Haha. Fuck you:

              Daniel Castro is a Senior Analyst with ITIF specializing in information technology (IT) policy. His research interests include health IT, data privacy, e-commerce, e-government, electronic voting, information security and accessibility. He has experience in the private, non-profit and government sectors.

              Before joining ITIF, Mr. Castro worked as an IT analyst at the Government Accountability Office (GAO) where he audited IT security and management controls at various government agencies. He contributed to GAO reports on the state of information security at a variety of federal agencies, including the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC). In addition, Mr. Castro was a Visiting Scientist at the Software Engineering Institute (SEI) in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania where he developed virtual training simulations to provide clients with hands-on training of the latest information security tools. He has a B.S. in Foreign Service from Georgetown University and an M.S. in Information Security Technology and Management from Carnegie Mellon University.

               

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    anonymous, Jan 4th, 2012 @ 12:03am

    as EA is a major member of the ESA and ESA supports SOPA, does it not therefore stand to reason that EA supports SOPA? if they dont, then they should at least say so. trying to stay 'neutral', waiting to see which way things fall, is the cowards way out and doesn't exactly encourage support from customers, does it

     

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    Squid Lips, Jan 4th, 2012 @ 11:51am

    EA

    "In September, we joined 400 other companies and associations in a letter asking Congress to explore legislative solutions to piracy. However we NEVER expressed an opinion on any of the specific proposals that have been drafted."

    He would uses the law against his fellow man is either a fool or a coward. He who can not live without that law is both.

     

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