Electronic Arts, a company that has won the “honor” of being named Worst Company in America more than once, has now ranked fifth on a list of most hated companies in the US. The list was put together by 24/7 Wall St., which compiled the list based on a variety of factors, including major events, customer satisfaction surveys, employee reviews, and more.
Since Electronic Arts has repeatedly been named the Worst Company in America, it’s really no surprise to see the video game publishing giant on a list of most hated companies. Even so, EA does have some dedicated fans, and they may be wondering what caused the company to rank so high on the list.
The biggest reason why EA has ranked fifth on 24/7 Wall St.‘s list of most hated companies is mainly due to the ongoing Star Wars Battlefront 2 loot box controversy. Star Wars Battlefront 2‘s loot boxes required players to play the game for a minimum of 40 hours to unlock iconic Star Wars characters like Darth Vader, or otherwise break out the checkbook. Backlash to Star Wars Battlefront 2‘s loot boxes was so severe that it resulted in EA smashing Reddit’s record for most downvoted post in history, and drew the attention of politicians, who are now looking at writing laws to regulate loot boxes in video games.
Another reason why EA ranked so high on the list – ahead of controversial companies like Monsanto, Comcast, Wells Fargo, and The Trump Organization – is due to the company’s tendency to purchase smaller studios and ultimately shut them down. EA has shuttered an impressive number of once-successful game studios, with one of the most recent casualties being Dead Space studio Visceral Games, which was working on a single player, narrative-driven Star Wars game before its closure.
In the past, EA has acknowledged the reasons why it has been given these dishonorable titles and has taken steps to rectify the problem. Shortly after current CEO Andrew Wilson entered his position at Electronic Arts, he actively attempted to repair EA’s image by making popular decisions such as getting rid of online passes for the company’s games.
With Electronic Arts ranking as the fifth most hated company in the US, though, it’s clear that EA once again has an image problem. Its use of loot boxes in Star Wars Battlefront 2 and its subsequent PR fumbles have caused some serious damage to the company’s reputation, and it will be interesting to see if EA is able to win back consumer confidence.
Source: USA Today