Electronic Arts claims that it is formulating on "more equitable" rules in the wake of numerous bans from its forums that have locked some users out of games on its Origin service. The Escapist does a nice job chronicling the events that really began this problem back in March, when a mouthy BioWare Social Network user earned a 72 hour ban in the forums and found that he had also been locked out of Dragon Age 2 - a game he paid money for. And the ban affected single-player, which was most confusing of all. Other users mentioned similar problems with BioWare's games.
Fast-forward to today and we learn that shenanigans continue. Rock, Paper, Shotgun, reported this week that its readers report being banned from EA forums and not being able to access Battlefield 3 or any other games tied to their EA accounts. EA offered a response to RPS - but it doesn't address or even discuss severing forum bans from service bans.
"With every game and service EA offers, we take the satisfaction of our customers very seriously. We discourage cheating and strive to maintain a high level of integrity in both our games and our forums. Therefore when someone violates our Terms of Service, we are forced to take actions that can include suspensions and other measures. We do not take those decisions lightly - however the integrity of our services and the satisfaction of our customers requires a clear set of rules," John Reseburg from EA Corporate Communications told the Rock, Paper, Shotgun.
"We have listened to our customers and are planning a policy update which will include more equitable rules on suspensions - we want to make sure the time fits the crime," he added. "As with all technology updates, these changes take some time to implement. Meanwhile, we urge any user with a question about suspensions or our policies to please contact us at (866) 543-5435 so we can address their specific situation."
Of course none of this clears up the issues related to forum bans. Apparently it's only safe to get in trouble on EA-related forums if you don't have any type of service tied to that account. While EA said earlier this year with the BioWare Network bans that it was an "accident," it sure seems like what's going on is now a policy. Hopefully EA clarifies just what its user base can expect when they get banned in a forum...