Arts says it's received several thousand letters protesting the
company's incorporation of LGBT themes within games such as Mass
Effect 3 and Star Wars: the Old Republic. The company says it has no
plans to censor its games – and at least three celebrities (at
least two of them real) have come out in support of the Redmond
you do 0 else today, do join me and @Yoda to help game-maker @EA
stand strong against anti gay-hate & the dark side,” tweeted
podcasting pioneer, actor and comedian Stephen Fry, known in the US
for his work in films such as Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows and
games including LittleBigPlanet and Fable III. He refers to a petition at LGBT rights site Allout.org, which aims to employ Yoda
(?) to deliver messages of support to EA for its inclusion of LGBT
themes. At time of writing, the petition's frozen after a hacker
attack, just short of its target of 75,000 signatures.
Above: Brooker (left) and Fry (right). Don't worry, we hadn't heard of them either until we did
for @EA for telling the homophobes to fuck off. Petition [at
allout.org] or you could just tweet @EA,” echoed presenter and
ex-PC gaming journalist Charlie Brooker, whose shows such as GamesWipe and
Black Mirror have commented on games alongside other contemporary
media and whose column in the Guardian often comments on gaming in pop culture.
to allegations of pushing an LGBT agenda and deleting anti-gay
comments from its forums, EA's Jeff Brown says the company “has not
been pressured by any groups to include LGBT characters in our games.
However, we have met with LBGT groups and sponsored industry forums
to discuss content and harassment of players in online forums. In
short, we do put options for same-sex relationships in our games; we
don’t tolerate hate speech on our forums.”
Allout stresses that its petition is
not affiliated with EA, which was the first gaming company to
contribute a video to the “It Gets Better” project. It's been pointed out elsewhere that while the company's stance is laudable, its own output isn't free from potentially homophobic content. "We are not arguing that Electronic Arts is a perfect company," explained Allout's Andre Banks, "but we
know that today, on this issue, they are taking an important stand that
should be celebrated and supported."
Previous campaigns have failed to
change the pro-LGBT politics of corporations such as Starbuck's and
JC Penny. Allegations that the Rebel Alliance itself was pursuing a
pro-LGBT agenda could not be confirmed at press time; but if the anti-EA Family Research Council wants to just outright compare itself to Emperor Palpatine and friends, we'll let that one slide.