This might get a little interesting soon. There’s no question that Electronic Arts has a not-so-cuddly reputation at the moment. Most gamers scoff at the very mention of their name and hold hatred toward the way they do their business in the gaming universe. This collective distaste for the company may be about to skyrocket even further after a bit of controversy arose on a BioWare forum recently.
The facts seem a bit up in the air, but here’s the basic idea of what happened: a forum user named v_ware shared that his account had be suspended for “inappropriate content” but was unclear what exactly this meant and why. The suspension was to last 72 hours and would prevent him from being able to obtain the DLC included with Dragon Age II, the new title from BioWare he was anxious to play. But without causing a scene the user went out to grab his Signature Edition of the game and simply play the game as-is until his suspension was up. As fate would have it, however, he would soon discover that he needed to activate his new game, preventing him from even playing that.
So what pure evil did this forum user speak in order to prompt EA to lock down on him so hard that he wasn’t even able to play the game he had spent almost $70 on?
In a direct quote from an EA live chat, they told this forum user that he said, and I quote (no bullshit at all): “Have you sold your souls to the EA devil?”
How dare he say such a thing in a forum! No one on this planet could be THAT cruel to another human being, especially in a forum/comments section on the internet. It’s all peace, love, and butterflies online. Just disgusting!
OK — seriously EA, people spend less time in prison for a first-time DUI and you banish this person for saying THAT?! Have you ever even read the things people say online before? It gets much worse, I assure you.
When sharing this story under another name, a BioWare rep responded to the complaint as well, saying:
Please review the EA Community Terms of Service, particularly sections #9 and #11. There are two levels of enforcement here:
1. BioWare community bans are forum-only and can be for as little as 24 hours. These bans should have no effect on your game, only your ability to use all the features of this website/community. these bans are handed out by BioWare Moderators as the result of our travels around the forum and/or issues reported by fellow community members.
2. 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.
Because the BioWare community now operates under the same umbrella as all EA Communities, community members here have all explicitly agreed to abide by and be governed by both sets of rules. Consider it an added incentive to follow the rules you say you’re going to follow.
If there are further questions or concerns, please send them to me via private message. Thank you.
End of line.
Take that as you will. All in all, this doesn’t shine a positive light on BioWare and it shines a downright dirty light on EA. People spend good money and a lot of it to play these games, and I’m pretty sure most people have the good benefit of being able to speak freely. There may be some details missing here, but if all is true as presented, EA is going to face the firing squad.
I for one don’t want to give anyone who thinks they can go on a power trip like this my business, and I’m sure many of you would agree. If you need to throw a temp punishment at someone for violating forum conduct rules, by all means, do what you need to do and throw some confetti in the air while you’re at it. But to not be able to take a grade school jab? Shame on you.
What do you guys think. Did EA react too harshly here, or do you feel they did what was right?
[Source: BioWare Forum via Game Informer]