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EA Settles Overtime Lawsuit 54

Heffenfeffer writes "Gamasutra reports that Electronic Arts is settling their class action suit with their programmers to the tune of $14.9 million. It also turns out that one of the named plaintiffs of said lawsuit was the spouse of the formerly anonymous blogger "ea_spouse" who wrote a scathing commentary on EA over a year ago which may have formed the basis of this suit."
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EA Settles Overtime Lawsuit

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  • by sirius sam ( 963847 ) on Wednesday April 26, 2006 @02:59PM (#15206739)
    The games industry can pay low wages and make people slave because it's "cool" and people want to be in it. Sad really.
  • Re:Shocking... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Jaysyn ( 203771 ) on Wednesday April 26, 2006 @03:00PM (#15206750) Homepage Journal
    The real suprize is that EA lost, especially in this employee-hostile day & age...


  • by s16le ( 963839 ) on Wednesday April 26, 2006 @03:05PM (#15206781)
    It is easy to say that people should not accept a job, or that they can quit. However, if they have a family to support, or have a medical condition and need the money or insurance coverage, not having a job for a few weeks while they find a new one might not be an option.
  • by Burlap ( 615181 ) on Wednesday April 26, 2006 @03:13PM (#15206827)
    just how much of that money each employee will actually see...
  • by nocomment ( 239368 ) on Wednesday April 26, 2006 @03:17PM (#15206854) Homepage Journal
    Maybe all that OT is the reason they suck?
  • by Shihar ( 153932 ) on Wednesday April 26, 2006 @03:26PM (#15206912)
    The issue is that video game programmers make substantially less then other programmers. The reason why this is so is because a lot of people want to specifically do video game programming instead of some other more lucrative type. In this case, their low wages really are their own fault.

    The key to happiness in this world is to find something that brings you some satisfaction and that pays enough to keep you happy. Some people are have very low needs and are happy with $20,000 and a job they find fully rewarding. Other people are happy making $100,000 on a job they would quit without even the curtsy of a two weeks notice they ever won the lottery.

    A few lucky people get the best of both worlds and work a high paying job that they love. I have met workaholic business owners that fill this exact category. One guy in particular that I know well over 80 hours a week owns a massive house with a dozen cars that he never uses because he is only home for more then a few days a month. He is probably going to die of a heart attack in the next 10 years, but he truly loves what he does and would probably do it for much less. I have also met people that dropped out of high school, got no education, and are working shit jobs that they hate for shit pay.

    Most people though, they really fall somewhere in-between. They balance self fulfillment in the working world with money. You don't go to school for a sociology major expecting to get out of college and run into a pile of money. People make their choices. This programs are no different. They have intentionally picked a field with poor pay. Using the education they already have they have the option of finding higher paid work. If making video games is what they really love to do though, then they need to find a balance. Is the shit pay worth the job? If it isn't, get the fuck out.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 26, 2006 @03:39PM (#15207022)
    Who is at fault, the rapist or the girl who didn't take a gun when she went shopping?
    Who is at fault, the dictator or the people who neither flee the country nor attempt a futile revolution?

    Newsflash -- the powerful always oppress the weak, and sometimes the weak have no option but to bend over and take it. Those like you who stand on the sidelines and sneer at the weak for not being powerful can fuck off and die. The rest of us, we appreciate it when the legal system steps in to ensure that everybody receives fair compensation for the hard work they do.
  • The thing is... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by JarinArenos ( 955039 ) on Wednesday April 26, 2006 @03:42PM (#15207046) Homepage
    The fact that they did indeed lose, despite the current business climate speaks volumes about just HOW BAD things were. Once things came out, it was simply impossible for the court to turn a blind eye to EA's reprehensible business practices.
  • by Sylver Dragon ( 445237 ) on Wednesday April 26, 2006 @06:14PM (#15208250) Journal
    While it's true that minimum working standards are non-capitalistic, that does not make them de facto bad. Take a look back in history at the working conditions of the 1920's. Worker safety was a joke; if you were sick, too bad, work or don't get paid; if you get seriously injured you were probably out of a job and well on your way to being dead broke. Pure capitalism is not functional, in the end it will degenrate into a form of feudalism (technically oligarcy) with a huge seperation between the have's and the have-not's. This will, almost inevitably, lead to civil unrest. In fact, in the early part of the 20th century, this is exactly where it lead. Workers unionized, and there were a lot of violent clashes. In the end, it was realized that there needs to be a balancing factor in the worker-employer relationship.
    If you look at the relationship between a worker and his employer it is naturally coersive. The employer has a measure of power over worker. Yes, technically the worker can leave at anytime, but this involves some level of risk, so the worker will be inclined to stay with a known quantity, rather than taking the risk; this is just human nature. The goal of employement laws is to prevent the employer from abusing this power, in order to pervent a race to the bottom condition, much like the US had in the 1920's. Which would lead to civil unrest.
  • by syousef ( 465911 ) on Wednesday April 26, 2006 @11:17PM (#15209733) Journal
    Some people are have very low needs and are happy with $20,000 and a job they find fully rewarding.

    The flaw in that logic is that anyone can get sick without warning. The idea of being poor but happy is a charming but dangerous little fantasy. At the end of the day you need to make sure you can live with yourself and don't hate every waking moment but the fact is most people go to a job to earn a living, and living involves unexpected costs sometimes.

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