Electronics Arts has once again been awarded The Consumerist's "Worst Company in America" award, defeating Bank of America in the event's final matchup. The weeks-long tournament had EA defeating the likes of multinational brewing company Anhauser Busch, Facebook, AT&T and finally defeating Bank of America with 78% landslide victory. This will be EA's second consecutive "Golden Poo" award.
Last week EA COO Peter Moore released a preemptive statement, hoping instill some shareholder confidence prior to what was then an inevitable win in the "Worst Company" poll. Rather than confidence inspiring, Moore's statement came off rather obstinate. The Consumerist found it in-line with their previous experience with the company:
"In his misguided, misinformed missive, Moore says things like “we can do better,” while at the same time attempting to put the blame for its WCIA success on a mysterious, unseen cabal of homophobic right-wing blog commenters and people who don’t like whichever football player(s) are on the cover of Madden NFL.
Moore’s note also marked the second time EA has tried to deflect criticism by pointing to previous winners of the Worst Company tournament, as if to mock consumers who dared to express their discontent with a mere video game publisher.
Make no mistake: Video games are big business. A company like EA — and Activision, Ubisoft, Nintendo, and Sony, etc. — merits just as much scrutiny as any other business that plays a leading role in a multibillion-dollar industry. It’s only a fractured, antiquated public perception that video games are somehow frivolous holdovers from childhood that allows gamers to be abused and taken advantage of by the very people who supply them the games they play."
Yet it's the site's closing statement that perhaps most accurately captures the feelings of the hundreds of thousands of voters in the poll:
When we live in an era marked by massive oil spills, faulty foreclosures by bad banks, and rampant consolidation in the airline and telecom industry, what does it say about EA’s business practices that so many people have — for the second year in a row — come out to hand it the title of Worst Company In America?
Whatever your feelings on the many controversies revolving around EA's business practices, whether the subject be Origin, microtransactions, DRM, exploitive DLC, or the closure of some of our favorite studios and teams, there's no argument to be had that Electronics Arts has shown little attention to any gamer's complaints. Rather, they continue to ignore the issues and push them as if the controversy only serves to fuel the engine of the company's bulk.
It's that stubbornness perhaps more than any single controversy that seems to be why Electronic Arts has won its second consecutive award for "Worst Company in America." With the company currently searching for a new CEO, perhaps there's time for humble reflection and a new direction for the company going into the next generation. Or, maybe we can just look forward to another statement prior to the "Worst Company in America" awards next year.