For the second year in a row, EA “won” the Golden Poo award for being the worst company in America.
The award was handed out by The Consumerist after its users’ votes are tallied. This year, EA faced tough competition from other dreaded companies such as Bank of America, Comcast and Ticketmaster (second, third and fourth place “winners” respectively). The first runner-up, Bank of America, seemed like a worthy contender, but EA managed to win against it in the final round with a decisive 78% of the votes.
Users who voted for EA detested the company for pushing transactions on all titles, overpricing its games and forcing irritating DRM systems unto their players. The disastrous launch of SimCity also played a vital role in swaying the votes.
"EA made a royal mess of the SimCity release by failing to foresee that the people who would buy the game -- and who would, per the game’s design, be required to connect to the EA servers -- might actually want to play at some point in the week after making their purchase," The Consumerist summed it up. "But that’s just the latest in EA’s long history of annoying its customer base with bad support. Customers who paid full price for games, or who spent or saved huge piles of in-game cash in EA’s online products, would suddenly find a problem with their accounts, but attempts to rectify the problem -- or even get a response from EA -- would go unheeded."
EA chief operating officer Peter Moore released an open letter to gamers, basically admitting that EA is a bad company, but it is hardly the worst as it should come second to the “companies responsible for the biggest oil spill in history, the mortgage crisis, and bank bailouts that cost millions of taxpayer dollars.”
"I'll be the first to admit that we’ve made plenty of mistakes. These include server shut downs too early, games that didn’t meet expectations, missteps on new pricing models and most recently, severely fumbling the launch of SimCity. We owe gamers better performance than this," he admitted half-heartedly. "But I am damn proud of this company, the people around the globe who work at EA, the games we create and the people that play them."
Moore’s letter was released before the final voting round, but it failed to change the voters’ decision.