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EA is Not the Worst Company in America – Here’s Why
In gaming? Maybe. But it is far, FAR from the worst company in America.
I know that I’ve indulged in EA bashing in the past, and I will likely participate in the future. It is a thoroughly enjoyable pastime, after all, no reason to give it up completely. They continue to do shitty things, so I’ll continue to rip them new assholes when they do. But worst company in America is too much of a stretch for me to agree.
The Evil That Rich White Men Do
Let me give you a little perspective. McDonald’s and Walmart don’t pay their hardest working employees enough money to put them above the poverty line while simultaneously claiming record profits – in fact, McDonald’s recommended their underpaid employees sell their possessions to help make extra cash. JP Morgan Chase scammed investors and paid the government 13 BILLION dollars to take some of the heat off. The CEO of Abercrombie and Fitch is one of the most deplorable people on the planet Earth, with a “no fat chicks” policy that’s impossibly uglier than his face.
But EA….those bastards released some buggy games. AND FOR THAT THEY WILL FACE THE FIERY VENGEANCE OF GAMERS EVERYWHERE.
EA, You Done Me Wrong
I know that Battlefield fans are pissed about Battlefield 4’s endless bugs, so much so that EA’s been hit with multiple lawsuits over it. I know the PC port of Need for Speed: Rivals had unskippable cutscenes and training dialogue, and it was also locked at a 30p framerate for absolutely no discernible reason. I know the Simcity launch is one of the biggest disasters in gaming history, with servers down for over a week, and more than that, they lied about the offline mode being necessary and too hard to implement. On top of all that, they’re not making any friends on the mobile front, either, with disappointing freemium offerings of Real Racing 3, Plants VS. Zombies 2, and Madden 25.
Yes, EA has done a really crappy job this year. Meanwhile, Activision is happier than a pig in shit, getting away with releasing the copy-pasted mess that was Call of Duty: Ghosts, with the PC port getting a bogus 6GB RAM restriction. They also released some horrendous licensed crapfests this year – anyone remember Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows? Or The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct? And the reason they get away with all of that is because EA is perceived as being Hitler’s game company.
But I feel it’s important to note that EA have made some strides forward this year. They did, after all, abolish the inanity that was Online Passes, they retracted their stance that all EA games would have microtransactions going forward, and their stance on LGBT characters in gaming is highly admirable.
“We’re Not Caving on That”
Peter Moore, the COO of EA, released a statement appropriately called “We Can Do Better”, that contained an awful lot of bluster about sales numbers and 45 million Origin accounts (no mention of how many of them are satisfied or would’ve installed Origin if it hadn’t been REQUIRED to play the game they paid for), but the part that earned my respect was when he noted that EA was getting votes for Worst Company in America from conservative groups (read: idiots) due to their LGBT policy and letting people create LGBT characters in games. His response? “If that’s what makes us the worst company, bring it on. Because we’re not caving on that.”
That’s brilliant. I wish more companies took that stance. Does it negate all the bad? No – but I feel it proves EA isn’t just a greedy corporate machine. Despite this, they beat out Bank of America for Worst Company in America last year 78% to 22%. And Bank of America is so ridiculously cartoonishly evil that their executives should just drop the pretense and wear huge red devil horns all day.
That’s why I feel gamers desperately need to gain some perspective. Has EA done some shitty things this year? Yes, without a doubt, that can easily be proven. Have they ruined lives or kept their employees in poverty like some of the others? Not so much.
Besides, there is literally no way they can be more evil than McDonald’s. Seriously. If their refusal to pay their suffering workers a living wage doesn’t convince you, remember, the McDonald’s mascot is a clown. How much more proof do you need?