On Tuesday we posted a story on how Electronic Arts has been banning Origin users from their games. The bans are the publisher’s response to Electronic Arts Forums infractions, although it has not been explicitly stated that the game ban is intentional. Since March this year, EA has maintained that the game bans have been accidents stemming from the fact that a user’s Forum account overlaps with their game account.
Rock, Paper, Shotgun continues to investigate this issue and reported earlier this week that a number of users have been suspended from their Origin games due to Forum infractions; some warranted and others completely uncalled for. What’s more, one user received a lifetime ban and will never be able to access his Origin games again.
Electronic Arts has since responded to Rock, Paper, Shotgun with typical PR answer answerless bollocks.
“With every game and service EA offers, we take the satisfaction of our customers very seriously. We discourage cheating and strive to maintain a high level of integrity in both our games and our forums. Therefore when someone violates our Terms of Service, we are forced to take actions that can include suspensions and other measures. We do not take those decisions lightly – however the integrity of our services and the satisfaction of our customers requires [sic] a clear set of rules.
We have listened to our customers and are planning a policy update which will include more equitable rules on suspensions – we want to make sure the time fits the crime. As with all technology updates, these changes take some time to implement. Meanwhile, we urge any user with a question about suspensions or our policies to please contact us at (866) 543-5435 so we can address their specific situation.”
As Rock, Paper, Shotgun points out, the whole “time fits the crime” thing isn’t the issue here. The issue is that people are being blocked from accessing content that they have paid for.
Until this is all sorted out, assuming it will be and EA becomes more transparent, it would probably be wise to stay away from the EA Forums should you ordinarily frequent them. That or just don’t post anything at all.