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Banned from the forums? Kiss all of your EA games goodbye.  (Source: EA Support Forums)
Being banned from the official EA forums can cost you the ability to play your games online, or properly

The world of online gaming has always been a battleground -- not just between the teams in-game, but between those who play by the rules and those who break them. Cheating and hacking swings the balance of the game, griefing plagues many an MMO, and a degree of foul language is almost expected for online games that might be played by anyone over the age of thirteen.

Publishers like Valve have fought back with the Valve Anti-Cheat (VAC) system and Bungie continued by tying their official forum accounts into the popular Halo series with a ban at the forums negating the user's ability to use the matchmaking service. Now Electronic Arts has stepped up enforcement to the next level, with threats of revoking the online ability of a user's entire game library.

A post by EA Community Moderator Aaron "Apoc" Kaufman outlines the significantly higher threat carried by a ban from the official forums:

Your forum account will be directly tied to your Master EA Account, so if we ban you on the forums, you would be banned from the game as well since the login process is the same. And you'd actually be banned from your other EA games as well since it’s all tied to your account.

While some players may rejoice at the idea of delivering a metaphorical dose of chlorine to the online-gaming swimming pool, many others might remember a fairly well-publicized incident from a little over a month ago, where Spore users speaking out against the SecuROM DRM were threatened with a ban. While EA claimed "miscommunication" caused this inappropriate threat, and assurances were made that users "... are not going to lose (their) game for posting a comment" it certainly seems that promise was reneged on.

Currently, losing an EA Master Account will mean that the associated games will be unplayable through official EA servers. In the case of single-player games, the offline mode will still be accessible - however, titles such as Spore will no longer be able to receive content updates.

While it certainly seems easy enough to avoid the trouble by not joining or posting on the EA forums, your in-game actions can get you in trouble as well. Many a forum posting -- not on the official EA forums, natch -- has sprung up where a user has reported their Spore account suddenly suspended, after their latest creation was reported as particularly offensive.

Until EA clarifies the issue, as was previously done with regards to the DRM postings, it might be best for those with a penchant for Rick Astley videos to keep their hands off the keyboard.

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RE: just wrong.
By mindless1 on 11/4/2008 9:33:57 PM , Rating: 2
Yes, I think that because it is the internet that there is not a damn thing I can possibly post that allows someone to revoke a license I have already paid for without any knowledge before purchase that I'd have to kiss ass to keep the license I would own.

It's illegal. Period.

I don't give a damn if you don't like what people post on a forum, that is why moderators exist to police those forums and it is an entirely separate domain than owning a product license.

I and the vast majorty of customers do not pre-agree to anything except to pay the stated price to play the full game. Your idea of add-on terms has never held up in court and never will. Full disclosure is the only legal, moral, decent way to conduct business.

NEVER is it tolerable for any term to be added after the fact, after a two party contract (paying and getting license) has been met by both parties. If you can't understand this basic principle of right and wrong, you are utterly lost about basic consumer rights.

It is completely illegal. I and everyone have never bought a game under the context that we couldn't have free speech. If a private website wants to censor that, let them piss people off by doing so, but it never negates a prior contract that did not specifically spell out that term.

Once it specifically spells out this god-like power of censorship, to the point where everyone realizes the contract they're getting into, only then will it be enforcable as a retraction of contract.

You sadly miss the entire point of a two party agreement. Neither can make vague nonsense statements then come back later and claim those allow for voiding the meat of the contract... the whole purpose for it.

NOBODY can basically make up the rules. Get a clue, PLEASE!

"Spreading the rumors, it's very easy because the people who write about Apple want that story, and you can claim its credible because you spoke to someone at Apple." -- Investment guru Jim Cramer
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