It's in the game: how EA tackles piracy


It's in the game: how EA tackles piracy

Electronic Arts is one of the most successful video games publishers on the planet, but with that success comes a sustained piracy threat. Now the company is fighting back, as TB&I finds out.

When it comes to publishing video games, they don’t come much bigger than Electronic Arts (EA). Founded in 1982, the US company began making games for home computers and has since diversified to consoles, laptops, mobile phones, social networks and e-book readers. At least three of its game franchises (which include supplements) have sold more than 100 million copies worldwide and in 2012 it made around $4.1 billion in revenue.

Inevitably, EA’s success has brought its problems. As the company has built up its brand by selling huge numbers of games, the ears of the pirates, the unscrupulous rulebreakers seeking to cash in on content creators’ success, have pricked up.

“Piracy is one of our biggest problems,” says Vineeta Gajwani, senior counsel for trademarks and copyright at EA. “As we sell more and more products online, we are seeing more piracy online. We have also seen a lot of fast-follows and ‘clones’ of our social games—and many of them use very similar artwork, graphics and layouts to our games.”

EA, piracy, video games, Electronic Arts, cybersquatting