EA & Reddit: Bribing mods to promote Battlefront?

We have heard good and bad things both about Star Wars Battlefront. Rushed development to launch DICE’s game before the movie, lack of server browser, free DLC to tie the movie into the game, and so forth. There’s apparently another shady practice going on behind the scenes with the upcoming game.

It looks like the publisher – Electronic Arts – tried to slowly shuffle the negative voices under the rug on Reddit by bribing the moderators with early alpha access and Star Wars Festival tickets, and in return, the mods would remove the negative voices on the website.

On the Battlefront subreddit, one of the ex-moderators posted about this subject. Here’s what he had to say:

I’m the ex-moderator that finally found the time to report them for all of the shady shit they have been doing over the course of the last year. They originally demodded me due to my suspicion that the subreddit was filled with paid reputation management accounts. Since this has gone down, these accounts have been assaulting my character nonstop, trying to drag my name through the mud. Here’s the basic rundown regarding the moderators:

They accepted favors in return for moderator actions.

They farmed the subreddit nonstop for YouTube revenue by stickying videos made by the moderators and adding referral links in the sidebar.

They tried to cover up the bribery by banning users who tried to expose them

They willingly suppressed criticism of the game through moderator action

They turned a blind eye to the massive astroturfing operation that is underway in the subreddit.

They exposed personal details about users that were confided in private.

Of course I have screenshots and links to validate all of this, but I’m on mobile right now so it will have to wait until I get home. So what is the end result?

Profiteering moderators were shadowbanned

EA “community manager” shadowbanned

New moderators appointed by Admin (meh)

All moderators were given access to the closed alpha of the game with the understanding that we would censor certain submissions

They deleted this public post where the head moderator’s alternate account admitted to accepting the bribe. Here is the community reaction.

One of the moderator’s monetized videos listed as a sticky post.

A backup of our CSS where we had multiple sidebar buttons advertising monetized YouTube channels.

Free lunches from DICE, I bet they were scrumptious! Major conflict of interest. Someone else already linked the video regarding the free tickets.

Better get rid of comments and threads that call us out, says head moderator.

Taking moderation recommendations from EA employees/Affiliates.

I will not be linking to where they publicly leaked personal information, for obvious reasons.

If you there’s any more specific evidence that you guys are looking for, feel free to ask.

Just one question. Dear EA, what was the point of all this, really…?

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Anikó, our news editor and communication manager, is more interested in the business side of the gaming industry. She worked at banks, and she has a vast knowledge of business life. Still, she likes puzzle and story-oriented games, like Sherlock Holmes: Crimes & Punishments, which is her favourite title. She also played The Sims 3, but after accidentally killing a whole sim family, swore not to play it again. (For our office address, email and phone number check out our IMPRESSUM)

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