FIFA 21 EA Gate: After the scandal, EA stops giving gifts to footballers and celebrities

FIFA 21 EA Gate: After the scandal, EA stops giving gifts to footballers and celebrities

FIFA 21 EA Gate

EA Sports has been in the blizzard ever since their employees' illegal activities were brought to light. The case, called EA Gate, broke out with the spread of screenshots of a conversation, in which an employee of the company was intent on selling FUT cards to a user for thousands of Euros each.

Le Electronic Arts' preliminary investigations, which began immediately after the reports, confirmed and highlighted "some questionable activities involving a very small number of accounts and objects", against which, the entertainment giant promises, serious measures will be taken . Cards illegally placed in the ecosystem will be deactivated, while employees involved can expect severe punishments.

These days, many players have wondered how it was possible to make direct selling of FUT cards, a practice normally not allowed. In Ultimate Team it is in fact possible to buy packages only through FIFA Points. Well, this is possible through the "Content Granting" function for the exclusive prerogative of customer service managers, who thanks to it can distribute FUT items directly to the players.

Content Granting can be implemented in three distinct occasions:

Worldwide Customer Experience Granting: An Electronic Arts employee can award FUT items to players who have been shown to have accidentally deleted them, or who have lost them due to a glitch or an EA Sports error; Testing & QV: in this case a content is assigned for testing and quality control purposes only. Usually this practice takes place on test servers, which the community of players cannot access; Discretionary Content Granting: This program is used when EA Sports intends to make gifts to celebrities and professional footballers who have distinguished themselves for their contributions to the FIFA franchise. The items delivered in this way are not exchangeable and can only be used by the receiving account, and represent only 0.0006% of the total, therefore they have no particular impact on the ecosystem. This system does not involve Content Creators. Well, it is possible that in the EA Gate the offending employee made use of the third way, therefore Electronic Arts has decided to disable the Discretionary Content Granting indefinitely. We look forward to the developments and the outcome of the internal investigations.

EA Disables FIFA Discretionary Content Granting Indefinitely Amidst 'EA Gate' Scandal

EA has halted all FIFA discretionary content granting for an indefinite period of time as it investigates allegations that an employee, or at least someone involved with EA FIFA, has been selling rare FIFA 21 Ultimate Team items on a makeshift black market for real money.EA gave an update on this scandal, which the community has dubbed 'EA Gate,' and explained how it has launched a 'rigorous investigation' on how this could have happened and how it is narrowing down which accounts received content through this 'illicit method.'The company has also made clear that any accounts that have received items that were 'transferred nefariously' will be permanently banned.

These items, which are meant to be earned through gameplay or other engagement (i.e. a Twitch broadcast), were granted to other accounts by one or more EA accounts, which were 'either compromised or being used inappropriately by someone within EA.'


Content granting or purchasing player items in exchange for money is in no way condoned by EA, as it 'runs counter to the game's competitive integrity, is a violation of EA’s User Agreement, and is not something we tolerate.'

While EA's initial investigation uncovered that this questionable activity only involved a small number of accounts and items, it is still unacceptable to the team.

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Following the investigation, EA will take action against any employee found guilty and any items that have been granted through this manner will be removed from the FUT ecosystem and the accounts that had these items will be permanently banned.

'Regardless of these actions, we appreciate how concerning this is to all of our players, and we apologize for the impact of these improper grants within the community,' EA wrote. 'We also appreciate how extremely annoying and frustrating it is that this practice might have come from within EA. We’re angry too. We know that the trust of our communities is hard-earned, and is based on principles of Fair Play. This illicit activity shakes that trust. We’ve also been clear since the creation of Ultimate Team that items cannot be exchanged outside our game, and that’s key to how we keep our game safe from manipulation and bad actors. This is a breach of that principle, as well -- and we won’t let it stand.'

For those who are unfamiliar with content granting, it is a process in which certain in-game items are directly distributed to a specific account. In FIFA, these items can be a player, a kit, or a consumable.

The three most prevalent ways content granting occurs is through Worldwide Customer Experience, Testing & QV, and Discretionary Content Granting (Athletes, Partners, & Employees).

A Worldwide Customer Experience granting is for when a player accidentally deletes content, content goes missing due to a technical glitch, or a mistake was made by EA and a player is given to them as a make-good.

Testing & QV is for when content is granted for testing and quality verification. This usually occurs on dedicated test servers and isn't seen by the global player base, but sometimes these tests must occur in the live environment to ensure all is working as it should.

Discretionary Content Granting is for when EA wants to 'recognize contributions that have been made by certain Pro Footballers, celebrity partners, or even our [EA's] own employees.' These items are always non-tradeable and can only be used by the account to which it was given.

These items only account for 0.0006% of the total player items in the FIFA 21 ecosystem and have no impact on the odds of any account receiving a specific player or item through normal means.Have a tip for us? Want to discuss a possible story? Please send an email to

Adam Bankhurst is a news writer for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter @AdamBankhurst and on Twitch.

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