In a lengthy interview with GamesIndustry International, executives from Zynga and Electronic Arts talk about how publicly opposing the Defense of Marriage Act has impacted their businesses. Earlier this year Chick-Fil-A came out publicly to say that it supported traditional marriage between a man and a woman. This set off a firestorm of protests and boycotts for the restaurant chain. In response to this stance and for their own reasons, companies such as Electronic Arts and Zynga decided to sign on to an amicus brief opposing the Defense of Marriage Act. In case you are not familiar with the law, it legally defines marriage between one man and one woman.
Interestingly EA's and Zynga's opposition to DOMA has yielded no backlash from "investors, from the press, or internally."
"We're very vocal about our position, and people ultimately have an option to invest in the company or not," Zynga's Reggie Davis told GII.
Electronic Arts head of global diversity and inclusion Ginger Maseda said that the positive comments "far outweigh" any negative comments the company has received about DOMA.
"There have been no questions, comments or concerns raised from our investors with regards to support for LGBT initiatives in the community or having LGBT characters in our games," Maseda said. "Essentially, it's been a non-issue from an investor perspective."
Davis went on to call the fight for LGBT equality "the civil rights issue of our time."
"There are 13, 14, 15-year-old boys and girls committing suicide throughout a lot of the country because they can't come to grips in their community with being who they are," Davis said. "And to me, it just takes the whole debate around 'some people don't agree with it,' or 'you're a public company; should you not do this because of your full representation to your shareholders?' We're very vocal about our position, and people ultimately have an option to invest in the company or not. As long as there's good disclosure around what your commitments are at the company, then people can make informed decisions as to whether they want to invest in you or not."
Maseda stressed that EA is trying to be all-inclusive in all things they do and "part of inclusion is making everybody feel heard and that they have a voice," she added. "As a publicly traded company, I think it's important to listen to our consumers. Whether we believe it's right or wrong, it's all incorporated into what we do."
"As a publicly traded company, I think it's important to listen to our consumers," added Maseda. "Whether we believe it's right or wrong, it's all incorporated into what we do."
You can read the rest here. There's also an excellent comment from a Jagex executive about the subject in the comments section of the article.