EA Australia Responds To CHOICE 'Shonky' Award, Appreciates The Feedback, Has Made Changes

Yesterday EA Australia was awarded a 'Shonky' by CHOICE, Australia's largest independent consumer advocate, for charging customers $2.48 per minute to complain during the Sim City launch debacle. This morning EA responded claiming it appreciates the feedback, and touted some of the changes it made during, and after, the Sim City situation.

"We apologise to our players in Australia who were charged while calling to get support for their games," said Snezana Stojanovska, Regional PR Manager, APAC and Developing Markets. "We agree with the sentiment that customers should not have to pay unreasonable costs for support, and have taken immediate steps to rectify this situation.

"During the Australian evening hours, we switched the premium service number to a Melbourne local rate phone line as an interim solution. In addition to phone support, players always have an option for free live chat, email support, and community resources on Answer HQ, EA’s online support community.

"Thank you for your candid feedback, and we hope these changes improve the support experience for our Australian customers."


    We at EA hear you and understand that you don't want to pay for support. So with that in mind we removed support altogether. You're welcome.

      We will be implementing support codes with our games. Owners of new copies will get up to 10 minutes of support at the lower call rates. Owners of used games will have to purchase support coupons from the EA website prior to calling, or will have to pay $2.48 per minute.

      Last edited 30/10/13 11:33 am

    Free VOIP chat through Google voice to their US support numbers always do the trick :)

    "players always have an option for free live chat" - I've tried to use this when they weren't in crisis mode, and they weren't up to it.

    EA charged me twice for Simcity when I bought it. I used their Live Chat platform to tell them their error. The wait was about 20 or so minutes and they fixed it within 5 minutes. I really don’t know why more people would use this option, rather than calling.
    I'm not defending EA at all, I just find that customer support (especially with US based companies) is always better left to online options.

      Same with telstra too. Modem died, took 2hrs on hold to get to talk to someone about it. Seperate occasion had a Phone problem, went online, chatted to someone within 10 minutes.

        Yep Telstra's live chat is great. No wait, and my problem was sorted in 10 minutes.

          Agreed. I used it as well, and saved the chat log which was a perfect reference point for some later complaints I made.

      I had some errors with the SWTOR edition I ordered and used their livechat... the results were incredibly unsatisfactory in that on three separate contacts I got three contradictory stories and it took an incredibly long time for them to check past contact history and see what was up.

      But that was launch week, and God only knows what kind of madness those places devolve into during a product launch.

    "We here at EA love our customers, they have money, we love money.... money is good"

    During the Australian evening hours, we switched the premium service number to a Melbourne local rate phone line as an interim solution...Am I misreading it or is this essentially saying that if you live in Melbourne and call during their evening hours, you get local rates, any other time are the normal fees, and if you live anywhere else, you have to pay national call rates?

    Came here preparing to be grudgingly impressed and lift boycott... Didn't happen.

    Though to be fair... I don't know what I was expecting.

    When I think about it, it's a US company. They can't reasonably be expected to staff a call centre in every country they sell to, and they can't afford to foot the bill for millions of post-sale international callers who aren't generating revenue.

    They're big... but not big enough for that level of support.

    LiveChat makes sense for realtime response. @freezespreston might've been taking the piss about removing the phone number because it's expensive, but I don't actually see that as too bad an option. Save people (or their wallets) from themselves. It's not like it was ever a GREAT option anyway.

    Thank you EA for your considered response and all your tireless effort, but how about you just go and fuck yourselves...

    EA support? Isn't that some kind of oxymoron? We would have better luck dividing by zero.

    haha! ea sucks! they lost touch with today's gamer - the self entitled turbofeminist

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