|Electronic Arts inundated with hate mail regarding same sex relationships in Mass Effect 3|
|Posted: 05.04.2012 03:47 by JonahFalcon||Comments: 3|
Electronic Arts has been under a constant barrage of fan protests lately. From being as "Worst Company" in The Consumerist reader bracket vote to having fans about the Mass Effect 3 endings, now the company is being attacked by fundamentalist Christian right wing groups about the inclusion of same sex relationships in Mass Effect 3 and Star Wars: The Old Republic.
The chief protesters are Florida-based Christian pressure groups The Family Research Council, headed by Tony Perkins, and Focus on the Family, led by James Dobson. Both have accused Electronic Arts of bowing to gay and lesbian activists to include them in their games, something EA vociferously denies. The groups also accuse EA of "indoctrinating" children to homosexuality by forcing them to be exposed to a homosexual lifestyle.
"EA has not been pressured by any groups to include LGBT characters in our games. However, we have met with LBGT groups and sponsored industry forums to discuss content and harassment of players in online forums. In short, we do put options for same-sex relationships in our games; we don't tolerate hate speech on our forums," EA VP of corporate communications Jeff Brown stated.
Furthermore, no one is forced to play a gay character in the games, and the games certainly are not aimed at children, since the ratings have always been M (Mature) rated. "Every one of EA's games includes ESRB content descriptors so it's hard to believe anyone is surprised by the content. This isn't about protecting children, it's about political harassment," Brown informed.
Said groups also complained that their forum posts were being deleted - which was true, Brown stated. EA forums specifically ban hate speech including racism and homophobia from their forums.
According to Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) associate director Matt Kane, the anti-gay groups have a fairly consistent agenda and modus operandi.
"Anti-LGBT campaigns are falling into a pretty consistent pattern these days, in which messages of hate directed at our allies are met with an overwhelming outpouring of support for our allies in response," Kane said, noting the backlash against anti-gay crusades against Starbucks and JC Penny, the latter of which "One Million Moms" attempted to have openly gay comedienne Ellen Degeneres fired as the company's spokesman.
Both campaigns failed.
In the meantime, Electronic Arts will have to deal with the threat of a boycott from a demographic that generally doesn't buy videogames in the first place.
Source: Games Industry BIZ