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Consoleation: Defensive to a fault

Peter Skerritt's picture

Mass Effect 3 Screenshot

You've undoubtedly heard it by now: Electronic Arts pulled a big upset in The Consumerist's Worst Company in America tournament for 2012, besting favorites Bank of America by a majority vote of nearly two-thirds.

While I think that it's telling that a video game company found its way into the voting to begin with, considering all of the potential candidates out there, the end result will change nothing. EA will still make games (with Online Passes), consumers will buy them (and complain about them), and the Circle of Life will continue. The idea that EA was voted the "Worst Company" will likely be forgotten in a few weeks, and EA won't be making any business decision changes because of an unsatisfied group of internet voters.

EA probably should have lost to Comcast or to AT&T in earlier rounds of voting. I didn't vote for EA in a single round of the event. Comcast has questionable service at times, and AT&T has had its issues with data throttling and other anti-consumer issues. It was fun to "handicap" the event on Twitter over the last few days, but EA kept pulling through from round to round. I never thought that EA would have a chance in the final round, stacked up against Bank of America's fees and other shenanigans, but upsets happen. There's an air of dissatisfaction among consumers when it comes to EA. Online Passes, the Mass Effect 3 debate, and complaints of lack of competition in the sports video game arena have fueled this dislike.

Unfortunately, as if on cue, video games media is jumping to EA's defense in a harsh fashion:

Maybe the Consumerist should have pointed out that by extension, Bank of America forecloses on a lot of moms' basements.
-Justin McElroy of Vox Games

Are we really going to do this generalization thing again? Blah, blah, entitled whiny gamers, blah, blah, something else. Give me a break. We're back to press versus consumers once again. There's such a blind sense of loyalty to the industry that some of these people cover, and consumers just don't have a right to be angry about anything. Instead, we should be thankful that video game publishers still make games for us to drop $60+ on, because, if they didn't, what would we do?

I get that many people don't agree with the outcome. I don't agree with it myself. I can also understand why the negativity exists. That's what we're all missing here, among the "DON'T LIKE WHAT I DON'T LIKE" condescension. There isn't a consumer's side in the gaming press, for whatever reason. It all comes off as an extension of the gaming industry, as if it's owed some sort of call to arms any time a negative story pops up. Consumers shouldn't be mad about online passes, because they shouldn't be cheap and buy used. Consumers shouldn't be mad about Mass Effect 3 because it's art, or because they have no right to change a creator's vision, or any of the other litany of reasons cited over the past month.

Consumers should just sit there and take it. Apparently. Even mild venting via an internet poll is frowned upon and means that you live in your mother's basement and have no clue about how much injustice there is in the world.

It's one thing to disagree with the outcome. I get that. It's another to jump back on that "better than us" high horse. I don't get that. At all.

Category Tags
Platform(s): Xbox 360   PS3   PC  
Developer(s): BioWare  
Series: Mass Effect  
Genre(s): Role-Playing   Shooting  
Articles: Editorials   Columns  
Topic(s): Business   Game Design & Dev  

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As you say there are a whole

As you say there are a whole bunch of other, better, candidates out there for title of Worst Company.

That EA won it, reflects more on the type of voter, and their propensity to vote on this type of absurdity, than anything else. The kind of individuals who feel as if their entire lives had been ruined by the so-called betrayal of the ME3 ending.

Woe is me, the depth of feeling here! Yet as, you say, they'll still buy the product. The mind boggles.

It's a bad ending, but honestly, grow up and get over it.

EA won just for ME3's ending?

Alv wrote:

As you say there are a whole bunch of other, better, candidates out there for title of Worst Company.

That EA won it, reflects more on the type of voter, and their propensity to vote on this type of absurdity, than anything else. The kind of individuals who feel as if their entire lives had been ruined by the so-called betrayal of the ME3 ending.

Woe is me, the depth of feeling here! Yet as, you say, they'll still buy the product. The mind boggles.

It's a bad ending, but honestly, grow up and get over it.

You honestly believe that EA won the award, solely over Mass Effect 3's ending? That's a laugh. There are numerous valid reasons that lead to EA winning the award. Such as the fact they bought out a several great game studios (Westwood, Origin Systems), Project $10, early server closings, and one -day DLC deals. Is EA the worst company in the U.S.? Not by a long shot, it's certainly not as malevolent as Bank of America and Mansanto. However, I can sympathize for those who have voted EA as the worst company in America. EA isn't the worst company in America, but definitely the worst video game company in the U.s.

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