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EA Forum Ban Will Now Mean EA Game Ban 549

Posted by timothy
from the being-nice-is-actually-an-option dept.
An anonymous reader writes "A post on the EA Support Forums from APOC, online community manager for Electronic Arts, outlines a new policy for their new forums, saying users who earn a ban based on their behavior in the forums will be locked out of all of the EA games tied to that account: 'Well, its actually going to be a bit nastier for those who get banned. Your forum account will be directly tied to your Master EA Account, so if we ban you on the forums, you would be banned from the game as well since the login process is the same. And you'd actually be banned from your other EA games as well since it's all tied to your account. So if you have SPORE and Red Alert 3 and you get yourself banned on our forums or in-game, well, your SPORE account would be banned to. It's all one in the same, so I strongly recommend people play nice and act mature. All in all, we expect people to come on here and abide by our ToS. We hate banning people, it makes our lives a lot tougher, but it's what we have to do.'" Update: 10/31 12:36 GMT by T : Not so! Pandanapper writes "After a flood of complaints the EA community moderator APOC corrects his statement about how banning you from the forums bans you from your game access as well:"That said, the previous statement I made recently (that's being quoted on the blogs) was inaccurate and a mistake on my part. I had a misunderstanding with regards to our new upcoming forums and website and never meant to infer that if we ban or suspend you on the forums, you would be banned in-game as well. This is not correct, my mistake, my bad."
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EA Forum Ban Will Now Mean EA Game Ban

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  • Awwww (Score:5, Insightful)

    by The Bungi (221687) <thebungi@gmail.com> on Thursday October 30, 2008 @09:56PM (#25578451) Homepage

    Fo'shure I'm looking forward to shelling out my hard-earned money (especially in this wonderful economy) for EA titles in the future after seeing this.

    I enjoyed EA games in the past. Being a military buff I especially enjoyed their flight simulators. They were mostly stable and fun to play. I cringed when they bought out Westwood because I thought they were going to screw up the C&C franchise, but (mostly) they didn't.

    But being banned from online play because I let out a "fuck" on their forums? Or for any reason whatsoever unrelated to behavior within the game? Never mind the insane DRM on their latest output.

    Fuck that. No more EA games for me. I'm getting old anyway. Time to switch to online Scrabble or something. Flash DigDug and Galaga FTW.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by iamhassi (659463)
      "so I strongly recommend people play nice and act mature. All in all, we expect people to come on here and abide by our ToS. We hate banning people, it makes our lives a lot tougher, but it's what we have to do.'""

      spoken like a true tyrant. "Obey me, or I will be forced to hurt you. I don't want to hurt you but you're forcing me".

      In other news.... EA has forums?
      • Re:Awwww (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Enderandrew (866215) <enderandrew AT gmail DOT com> on Thursday October 30, 2008 @10:03PM (#25578519) Homepage Journal

        I started buying EA titles used a while back because I didn't want to directly support EA anymore. I certainly won't purchase Spore with their DRM.

        • Re:Awwww (Score:5, Insightful)

          by Moryath (553296) on Thursday October 30, 2008 @10:42PM (#25578887)

          Won't it be fun finding out you just bought a "banned" copy then? I'm sure they will start tying the bans to the game's activation serial number as well.

          And of course, they'll ban anyone who complains about the constant bugs and shoddy coding in their games and wants to see a patch to make the game usable. Why should they care? They already got what they wanted (your money), you got screwed because they sold a crappy product that doesn't work and can't be returned to the store... they're happy, you're not, but they don't give a crap about the customer.

          Welcome to soviet russ....er EA-Land, Where Game Plays You.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by The Bungi (221687)

        It's really not an issue that a company will ban you for disruptive behavior on forums they control, or online because you're behaving like a 12-year old with Tourette's. But banning you from online play because you got into an argument in the forums and some admin decided he didn't like your tone is something else entirely. That's especially true for games whose main draw is online play, like COD4 for example.

        • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

          by thomasw_lrd (1203850)
          Not really, if you're that immature in the forums, you'll definitely be even more immature in an online game. I for one don't want my children exposed to such conduct. If people would just act like civilized humans, this wouldn't be such an issue. Thumbs up, EA.
          • Re:Awwww (Score:5, Funny)

            by Anonymous Coward on Thursday October 30, 2008 @10:32PM (#25578789)

            I sure hope you're trolling. If you aren't, then allow me to give you this gold-plated certificate inviting you to keep your fucking kids off my internet.

            • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

              by Hurricane78 (562437)

              I second that. But I think it would be better to stop fucking your kids at all and such... you know...

          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by Daswolfen (1277224)

            why are you letting your children play COD4?

          • Re:Awwww (Score:5, Insightful)

            by Faylone (880739) on Thursday October 30, 2008 @10:42PM (#25578895)
            Wait, what? You don't want your children exposed to such conduct while they're shooting up people in CoD4?
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by Berkyjay (1225604)
            Geez, people praising EA for this? My god, this isn't a move to get rid of all the people who annoy us online. This is a move to get rid people who speak out against EA online. I've seen and known people who got banned from their forums for complaining about issues in Battlefield 2. EA hates it when they get bashed in their own forums. So what I see here is first they start banning the loudest critics, then they start banning people who question their products, then finally they banning anyone not play
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by TheLink (130905)
            "If people would just act like civilized humans, this wouldn't be such an issue"

            Speaking of civilized, I'm actually fine with players being banned, if:

            1) There is due process.
            2) You can be unbanned if there is a mistake
            3) The people in charge of the banning and unbanning are elected by the players, and free, fair, regular elections are done every so often.

            But it's not ok if:
            1) There is no due process
            2) You can't be unbanned if there is a mistake
            3) You have dictators and cronies in charge of the banning proc
          • Re:Awwww (Score:4, Insightful)

            by RockoTDF (1042780) on Thursday October 30, 2008 @11:49PM (#25579433) Homepage
            Go back to suburbia where you belong, bitch to the PTA, and maybe Hillary Clinton will get the Senate to investigate the forums for you. Seriously, the world is an R rated place at a minimum, and trying to shelter your kids from it is asinine. Don't want your kids hearing bad language? Take em out of school. You can protect them from sex, drugs, and violence all you want (and as a parent, that is your right) but if you really think bad language is something to worry about you really haven't a clue what kind of world your kids live in.
          • by Moraelin (679338) on Friday October 31, 2008 @07:05AM (#25581379) Journal

            Actually, if you've looked at enough game forums, you'll see lots of bans which are for stuff that has nothing whatsoever to do with being uncivilized.

            There are whole companies where they delete posts, and even ban accounts for stuff like reporting or discussing bugs. And I don't mean the "you gay motherfuckers get off your lazy arses and fix my pet peeve right now" kind of "discussion", but even mentioning that some exploits exist at all, or that some DRM bug has prevented someone from starting the game. Especially if someone from Marketing got ideas like, "omg, if people find out we have bugs or multiplayer exploits, our sales will drop, and we can't have that before Christmas." But whatever the reason, trying to prevent people from posting bugs, especially if a bug has showed up already too often on the forum, _is_ a pretty popular way to avoid fixing them.

            Heck, Sony even had a sandbox for new forum users (which included veterans finally activating their forum account), just so they can't complain about the NGE in SWG. Apparently enough people activated their forum account just to say a final "good bye, but this is no longer fun" when unsubscribing, and we can't have that, can we?

            I also remember forum bans and account bans for as little as distasteful fanfic about someone's game. But it wasn't in the game, and it wasn't even on the game's forums. Just, you know, if you dare post something we dislike about our games, we'll kick you out.

            So I'm really not looking forward for more of that dictatorial accounts. If someone actually cheated in a multiplayer game or anything, fine, ban them. But not for offending an already arbitrary forum moderation system.

            And how does a Spore ban (since they used that particular example) even fit that picture? Even EA marketed Spore as a "massively single-player game". Let's say I was a forum troll. So exactly how's my temper going to affect someone else's game? Can I even get into anyone's game to spew obscenities at them? Or what?

            Plus, here's another idea: it seems to me like if you have a player rebellion on your hands, on the forums or in game or otherwise, the best policy is to be open and fair. People don't run amok about a bug when they know it'll get put in the queue and looked at later. You might get one, though, if it becomes obvious that you use PR bullshit and deleting bug reports, instead of fixing very real problems and exploits. They don't run amok about some griefer being banned, especially if again you're open as to why and what the rules are. You get a virtual rebellion when you're acting like an ass to the customers in the first place.

            Adding a game ban there just adds injury to the already existing insult.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by TheGeneration (228855)

        EA is run by douche bags.

        That being said, I'm sure their forums just went completely silent. Who wants to chance crossing an over zealous moderator?

      • Re:Awwww (Score:5, Insightful)

        by RogueyWon (735973) * on Friday October 31, 2008 @06:43AM (#25581293) Journal

        Unfortunately, it does sound a lot like EA have designed this system to be completely open to abuse from their end. I'm not really sure that this is a good move on their part; they're going to end up with a lot of unhappy customers (some of whom will almost inevitably have been banned unfairly).

        However, I'm not actually 100% opposed to the idea that people who behave like idiots on the forums should face consequences. As others have noted, somebody who is a foul-mouthed idiot on the forums is liable to be at least as bad, if not worse, in-game.

        A far better solution would have been to offer two tiers of servers for the game. You'd have "regulated" servers, which are free to play on (we're not talking about subscription-model games here, although I guess third party server-owners could still charge their own fees), but which would require a valid EA account in good standing. You'd then have "open" servers, which are likewise free to play on, but have no authentication required beyond a valid CD key. On connecting to an open server via the game's UI, you'd be given a quick warning/annoyance message indicating that the server you were connecting to would not be bound by EA's code of conduct or whatever.

        I know that in 100% of cases, I would choose to play on the regulated servers, while those who suffer from a bit of a potty-mouth, or buy a second hand copy of the game from somebody who does, would still be able to play online, just not with me.

    • Re:Awwww (Score:5, Insightful)

      by westlake (615356) on Thursday October 30, 2008 @10:46PM (#25578923)
      Fo'shure I'm looking forward to shelling out my hard-earned money (especially in this wonderful economy) for EA titles in the future after seeing this.

      I am betting that they can live without you.

      The Sims 3 is #36 on the Amazon PC seller list and it won't be released until February.

      Red Alert 3 is #3 - and the geek's negative reviews of the EA product and DRM are being ignored across the board.

      2,500 1-star reviews for Spore, currently #6 on the charts.

  • wow (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Dark_Matter88 (1150591) on Thursday October 30, 2008 @09:57PM (#25578455) Homepage
    FIRST the DRM, now this? They really hate players
  • EA just doesn't want any money, now do they?
    • by arth1 (260657)

      EA just doesn't want any money, now do they?

      Actually, I think that's the only thing they want.
      For sure, they don't want users. Just something nice to present to the shareholders right now. Who cares about the future.

      • The point is, they're not going to continue getting money if they keep screwing over, on a continuing basis, the people who give them the money.
        • Re:heh (Score:5, Insightful)

          by Shakrai (717556) on Thursday October 30, 2008 @10:35PM (#25578815) Journal

          The point is, they're not going to continue getting money if they keep screwing over, on a continuing basis, the people who give them the money.

          Then how do you explain the fact that the cable and cellular companies are still in business? ;)

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by mysidia (191772)

        EA just doesn't want any money, now do they?

        Average consumer will think... "surely only potty mouths get themselves banned from the game by flaming in the forums"

        And still buy the game.

        The banned person has to buy their games all over again, if they still want to play == more $$$ for the game maker.

  • It's all one in the same .... seriously? C'mon.

  • money back ? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Tom (822)

    So, they take away something I paid for - will they refund? Probably not. I wonder how that would play out in a court of law.

    • Re:money back ? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Registered Coward v2 (447531) on Thursday October 30, 2008 @10:06PM (#25578551)

      So, they take away something I paid for - will they refund? Probably not. I wonder how that would play out in a court of law.

      My guess is they would argue you agreed to the TOS which allows them to ban you; and that the money you paid was damages for violating the TOS and hence non-refundable.

      Would that fly, especially for games that you did not do anything wrong? Who knows, certainly not me since IANAL.

    • When you purchase Spore, you are licensing software. Using the EA account online is a service they provide so long as you abide by the terms of service. If they yank your EA account, online functions of Spore will cease, but you can still play the game.

  • EA = Lazy Bastards (Score:2, Interesting)

    by iMouse (963104)

    EA is not gonna get any of my business with their shoddy transgaming Cedega-wrapped junk that they deploy on the Mac platform.

    They need to stop burning their users, which EA has done for years. Kinda sounds like a consumer case of abuse where the victims keep coming back time after time. A shame, really.

    • While I prefer native ports, I will accept a Wine/Cedega wrapped package if it works and is officially supported. It beats not having a Mac/Linux version at all.

    • by cjb658 (1235986)

      They need to stop burning their users, which EA has done for years. Kinda sounds like a consumer case of abuse where the victims keep coming back time after time. A shame, really.

      EA gamers suffer from Stockholm syndrome?

    • by Minstrel Boy (787690) <kevin_stevens@hotmail.com> on Thursday October 30, 2008 @11:13PM (#25579163)

      The term "burning" brought up a memory - I was in the Oakland firestorm back in 1991, got out with clothes on my back and my car. The entire Bay Area community was very supportive in helping people recover - with the notable exception of Electronic Arts. I had about ten EA titles for my beloved Amiga 3000 system at the time. When I called EA, explained the situation, and asked how to get replacement media, the answer was "We have no way of knowing you really owned those games. Feel free to buy them at full retail again." When I asked what the point of all the registration cards I'd dutifully mailed in was, the answer was that "Those go to marketing, we don't have any record of them."

      Needless to say, I don't have to worry about dealing with the EA forums.

      KeS

  • Wow (Score:5, Interesting)

    by afidel (530433) on Thursday October 30, 2008 @10:02PM (#25578509)
    Now I will have ZERO problem pirating SPORE or any other EA title. In fact I wasn't going to bother with SPORE given the lackluster reviews, but I'm firing up Azurus as we speak to grab it just to spite the arrogant f'ers.
    • Re:Wow (Score:5, Insightful)

      by martinw89 (1229324) on Thursday October 30, 2008 @10:09PM (#25578575)

      Here's the way I see it:

      • The forums are free and voluntary. EA is being gracious by giving gamers a place to talk (take this sentence lightly). So, they can ban you here. It's a privilege to use the forum (take this sentence lightly as well).
      • You payed for the game. It's your goddamned right to play the thing, you gave them money in order for it to become your property. They can't ban you from this, that action is worse than DRM.

      It was EA's privilege to get my money. Well fuck that, they just lost that privilege out of principle. While people like us stop giving them money, time and time again we have seen boycotts like that don't work. Some one needs to sue EA, badly. That's the kind of action that speaks out.

    • Re:Wow (Score:5, Funny)

      by zarthrag (650912) on Thursday October 30, 2008 @10:16PM (#25578641)
      Now I will have ZERO problem pirating SPORE or any other EA title. In fact I wasn't going to bother with SPORE given the lackluster reviews, but I'm firing up Azurus as we speak to grab it just to spite the arrogant fuckers


      There, fixed that for you. Oh, and by the way - you're banned (bittorrent-talk, cursing) Have fun playing solitaire, sucker!
  • wow... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday October 30, 2008 @10:02PM (#25578515)

    Are they TRYING to start a class action lawsuit???

    Judge: "What did you do?"
    Me: "Called him an asshat."
    Judge: "What did they do?"
    Me: "Locked me out of $500 worth of software"
    Judge: "I rule in favor of the plantif for 1 ass-ton of money"

  • EA bought Bioware, so a ban on their forums would also ban you from playing the upcoming Star Wars MMO as well.

  • So who owns the game the gamers purchased?

  • by enderjsv (1128541) on Thursday October 30, 2008 @10:05PM (#25578535)

    EA Guy 1: You see what Bungie, Valve, and many other game developers are doing? Linking games to gamer's internet forum accounts? Letting you see your stats, other peoples stats, game avatars, recently played games, and other cool stuff like that?

    EA Guy 2: Um, yeah.

    Guy 1: Well, we need to do something to top that. We need something that will really draw in our players and make them part of our community.

    Guy 2: How about, participate in our forums, and earn the chance to be banned from your favorite game forever by a power-starved, 17 year-old forum mod.

    Guy 1: Brilliant! Next issue, blood sample toolkits packaged with all our games.

    Guy 2: ??????

    Guy 1: No, it's not what you think. It's only for the initial install... and three times a month after that.

  • One problem is... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by scrod98 (609124) on Thursday October 30, 2008 @10:05PM (#25578537)
    The amount of effort it takes to get things reversed when you feel you have been inappropriately banned. I recently spent a lot of time on web and phone to get my son's account re-enabled for an online game (not EA). Once a manager looked at his remarks in context it was clear that he was not in violation of their ToS. If they are going to do this, they better be damned sure of the training and ability of the people who will be issuing the death penalty to the gamers.
    • A bit harsh to ban other games.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Ithaca_nz (661774)
      Story submitter here (although apparently I'm known as anonymous these days):

      If they are going to do this, they better be damned sure of the training and ability of the people who will be issuing the death penalty to the gamers.

      I think that's one part of the problem, but I don't think that's *the* major problem (although I'm sure there will be plenty of false bans that will cause enough of a problem without the complications of linking the games/forums). I see more of a problem in the linking between games; Daddy buys two games, one for little Johnny and one for little Suzy, which he installs and registers via the same EA account. Little Johnny posts some

  • Oh wait, I don't own any EA games anyway. Seriously though, this surely an effort by corporate assholes to regulate what people say. Oops I said asshole. Oops I criticized EA. Is that going to get me banned? What a bunch of tools.
  • Why did BioWare have to get swallowed up by these jackals? I was looking forward to trying out SW:TOR, but fuck this.

  • Further proof that EA is the Microsoft of the video game industry: a policy that says "Fuck you, we're EA."

  • No it will not (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday October 30, 2008 @10:13PM (#25578611)
  • I wouldn't have a problem with this if we could be assured of fair, impartial, and reasonable moderation. But we know exactly how likely that is.

    Aside from the grinding and taking over your life parts of MMO's, the other thing that really bugs me about them is you are now at the mercy of the publisher. Nobody can revoke my right to play a single-player game and the only way to lose my progress is if my save game files get corrupted. But with an MMO, one bad mod interaction can ruin your entire game. "Hey, I

  • by Edgewize (262271) on Thursday October 30, 2008 @10:15PM (#25578635)

    http://www.shacknews.com/onearticle.x/55656 [shacknews.com]

    Posting in EA Forums is enabled by an EA Nucleus account -- but access to the forums and access to the games are separate. Players who have been banned from EA Forums are not automatically banned from online access to their other EA games. Players can be banned if they breach the Terms of Service or Code of Conduct in a forum, game or service. Each forum, game and service is managed independently by customer support representatives responsible for that specific forum, game or service.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Sibko (1036168)
      The story is not false, just outdated. First an EA representative says if you're banned from the forums, you're banned in all EA games everywhere.

      Then EA receives backlash from the community.

      Slashdot posts story.

      Suddenly it turns out this guy was totally wrong about the banning system, and was just talking out his arse.

      Given EA's history, I know which side I'm leaning [actually, practically falling over] to.
  • It really is just a matter of time before posting something they don't like in the forums will make it to where you can no longer play the game at all, as it refuses the authentication. If the forum is tied to the particular game's cd key I can kind of understand. However, someone buying a brand new game and being locked out of online play sounds like selling a defective product to me.

    Since EA has the power to dictate whether or not you can even PLAY the game, why are they still allowed to sell games to p

  • I haven't bought spore, but I have played through much of it. It really isn't even a multiplayer game aside from downloading content from other users to be added to your own single-player game. What purpose would banning a player from Spore serve? Are they trying to tell us that they would ban people from a single-player game?

  • by TheModelEskimo (968202) on Thursday October 30, 2008 @10:26PM (#25578733)
    ...because when an independent game developer bans you from his forum, not only does he shut down your account, but he writes you into the game as a boss character. >:-)
  • I like it. Seriously. It's a big "asshats are unwelcome" sign, meaning rational gaming adults that hate the immature antics are going to have an entire company with an "adult swim" gaming experience.

    And I'll bet that overall, the modding of forums *will* improve, when the first small claims or civil cases come to trial, or the first class-action suit happens. I think mods will get clued in very quickly that they'd better be able to completely justify a ban under the new system, because suddenly their decisi

  • I mean really

  • I can't think of any company that has openly worked this hard to piss off it's customers.

  • corporate ethics (Score:5, Interesting)

    by lysergic.acid (845423) on Thursday October 30, 2008 @10:35PM (#25578819) Homepage

    it always seems kinda odd when major corporations that don't mind being unethical themselves when they can make a profit then turn around and try to force their sense of morality on others (e.g. censorship policies). i think companies like Sony, EA, Gamespot, etc. should focus more on correcting their own bad behaviors rather than trying to control the behavior of others. trampling on the rights of consumers, extorting your customers, and selling out your journalistic integrity to advertisers are not exactly shining examples of corporate responsibility.

    it's especially annoying when major gaming sites have incompetently implemented profanity filters that prevent you from using ordinary words that happen to contain the same letter sequence as an "inappropriate word or phrase." i don't even bother posting reviews on Gamespot anymore because it's such a pain in the ass trying to figure out what word i used that triggered their profanity filter.

    and then there are sites like IGN that have imbeciles for moderators, who think that homebrew/emulation/ripping CDs is illegal. if i want to rip one of my PSX games onto my hard drive and convert it into an eboot that i can play on my PSP that's my own prerogative. censoring posts that talk about homebrew/CFW/etc. is blatant posturing by the gaming industry to condition the public into thinking that only industry sanctioned uses of games/consoles are legal, and that using homebrew, CFW, etc. is illegal/unethical/taboo.

  • This sounds like the best way to unsubscribe from their services!
  • by HockeyPuck (141947) on Thursday October 30, 2008 @11:04PM (#25579073)

    How is this any different than the signs in restaurants that say "We reserve the right to refuse to serve someone." They don't care if you already paid for your meal, if you're abusing the wait staff, they can kick you out. It's a private establishment, just like the forums/servers/realms/whatever, just because you paid for the game does not give you the right to infringe on the rights of others.

    Just because you bought the game does not entitle you to act like an a$$hole in the forums, chatrooms or in the game. I'm all for forums in which if someone is spouting off garbage, the moderator has the right to delete the post/thread and ban the user. I've seen this in many non-game related forums. Most people abide by the rules, and when some nut comes along and spouts junk, it just attracts more people like them.

    They're not going to ban someone that uses the occasional off colored language, or and if they're smart they'll warn you that you're on thin ice. Unless it's obvious that the poster is spamming posts etc..

    Many games were ruined by a$$holes, take Diablo2 for example. Cheating was so rampant that you could only play multiplayer with people you already knew. If only they could have banned all the cheaters.

    • by gapagos (1264716) on Thursday October 30, 2008 @11:16PM (#25579189)

      How is this any different than the signs in restaurants that say "We reserve the right to refuse to serve someone."

      Because when you are getting kicked out from a bar/restaurant, you are not banned from all the restaurants in the neighbourhood at the same time, and you are generally only banned for a limited time.

    • by guruevi (827432) <evi @ s m o k i n g c u be.be> on Thursday October 30, 2008 @11:21PM (#25579229) Homepage

      Wrong analogy. In restaurants you pay after you receive service. If you abuse the wait staff, they'll kick you out and don't expect you to pay (or come back).

      Here you already paid for service and now they're kicking you out based on their interpretation of acceptable free speech. It's like buying a car, paying it off then loudly complaining how bad that car is (whether or not something goes wrong) at the dealership when you bring it in for service and then the dealership says: sorry, we're keeping your keys (you physically own the car, you just can't drive it)

    • by IHC Navistar (967161) on Friday October 31, 2008 @03:45AM (#25580675)

      "They don't care if you already paid for your meal, if you're abusing the wait staff, they can kick you out."

      They *do* care if you paid for your meal. If you are abusing the wait staff because you aren't getting your meal, they are legally obligated to refung you your money. In this case, if you aren't getting the service you paid for, then they are legally obligated to refund you your money, regardless of how you act. However, they can kick you out, but not without your money.

      Being a jerk, to a degree, is completely legal. Taken too far, being a jerk can be Disturbing the peace, which is illegal in a public place. In a private setting, it is completely legal, but you can be asked to leave. Taking money and not providing the service or product that was purchased, to any degree, is theft and fraud. Theft and fraud are far worse than disturbing the peace or being asked to leave.

      Thankfully, being a dick is legal, and theft and fraud are not.

      Regardless of what their TOS states, if they remove functionality from a game package that you paid for, they are legally obligated to refund you your purchase cost, regardless of what their TOS says.

  • by Yvan256 (722131) on Friday October 31, 2008 @12:03AM (#25579537) Homepage Journal

    Microsoft? No thanks, I don't do Windows or Xbox.
    Sony? No thanks I don't want a Blu-Ray player nor DRM in my games.
    EA? Transgaming/Cedega, DRM and now this? No thanks.

    Companies I still trust enough to buy their games:
    - Nintendo (for Zelda, Metroid, etc)
    - Blizzard (still waiting on Starcraft II and Diablo III)

    In fact, almost any Zelda, Metroid, Starcraft or Diablo game is already pre-sold because I trust them enough to sell me good quality games that don't make me feel like a thief or a beta-tester.

  • EA TOS (Score:5, Insightful)

    by carlzum (832868) on Friday October 31, 2008 @01:02AM (#25579855)
    So what gets you banned? The TOS gives EA a lot of room for interpretation:

    ... 8. Termination of EA Services and Accounts

    EA may terminate any EA Service at any time by giving you notice of such termination within the time period specified when you joined the particular EA Service, or if no time period for notice of termination was specified, then within thirty (30) days of the date such notice is posted on the applicable EA Service.

    EA may also terminate your Account(s) (and access to all related entitlements) for violation of this Terms of Service, illegal or improper use of your Account, or illegal or improper use of EA Services, products, or EA's Intellectual Property. You may lose your user names and personas as a result of Account termination. If you have more than one Account, EA may terminate all of your Accounts and all related entitlements. EA may issue you a warning, or EA may immediately terminate any and all Accounts that you have established. You acknowledge that EA is not required to provide you notice before terminating your Account(s). If EA terminates your Account, you may not participate in an EA Service again without EA's express permission. To participate in an EA Service, contact support.ea.com EA reserves the right to refuse to keep Accounts for, and provide EA Services to, any individual. You may not allow individuals whose Accounts have been terminated by EA to use your Account.

    If your Account, or a particular subscription for an EA Service associated with your Account, is terminated, no refund will be granted; no online time or other credits (e.g., points in an online game) will be credited to you or converted to cash or other form of reimbursement, and you will have no further access to your Account or entitlements associated with your Account or the particular EA Service (such as points, tokens or other digital items).

    Check out the full TOS [ea.com] for the "code of conduct." I wouldn't share that No CD utility with the EA forums :)

  • by OrangeTide (124937) on Friday October 31, 2008 @02:29AM (#25580391) Homepage Journal

    Since you've removed the "being a dick" feature from the games, where is my discount to compensate for the game's diminished play value?

  • All Down Hill (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) on Friday October 31, 2008 @05:05AM (#25580939)

    EA's been all down hill since Archon 2. I'm not going to miss them.

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