[WATCH] Maltese FIFA superstar’s permanent ban spurs hacks on EA accounts

The outspoken and rebellious FIFA gamer from Malta was banned for vulgar comments he made on the game's developers which inspired others to do the same

FIFA gamer Kurt Fenech
FIFA gamer Kurt Fenech

Kurt Fenech, a controversial celebrity in the FIFA gaming circles, has been banned from FIFA competitive gaming, which ban inspired a number of as yet unknown hackers to take over Electronic Arts (EA) employee social accounts.

EA, the game publisher behind the FIFA games, has been the subject of visceral verbal abuse in the last few years over what players claim is their obsession with money and not bothering to fix the issues with their game.

The reason behind Fenech’s first ban was due to comments he made in Youtube videos to harshly criticise the developers of the game. His videos usually feature his brand of complaints and criticisms of the game expressed in an ersatz British accent and a deadpan stare.

“These guys, they live in this delusional world where they think they're doing a good job. They think everything's fine, when in reality it's not. In reality, every single one of these employees who has worked on the last couple of games should be unemployed right now. That's what should happen to them,” he says in one video.

In another, he is seen spitting on a scarf brandishing the EA logo. This despite Fenech’s pecuniary success from FIFA gaming—in 2018, Fenech (or Kurt0411) won $20,000 after placing third at the FIFA eWorld Cup 2018 Grand Finals in London.

In a Youtube video he uploaded last week, Fenech notified his fans that he had just been notified that his ban from competitive FIFA gaming was now permanent.

What followed is a wave of online abuse at the expense of EA employees and staff who said in a statement on Friday that community managers of the game were repeatedly told to kill themselves.

"Verbal attacks/toxicity hurts us all," they said.

The attacks culminated in a number of as yet unknown fans of Fenech hacking the employee Twitter accounts.

While hacked, one of these accounts posted a fake announcement that said that Fenech was no longer banned and that the company apologised for suspending him.

These EA staff Twitter accounts have remained offline for the time being.

"One thing's for sure: there's a revolution on the way. You have to pick a side. And choose a side wisely. You can't come after me and do nothing about your game. Enough is enough. Karma. It's about damn time you start caring about us. We deserve justice. We deserve a damn football game," Fenech said in a reaction video.

Gaming website Kotaku published a blog post on Sunday, claiming that Fenech "isn’t unbanned, likely never will be, and continues to post slightly terrifying videos to his Youtube page in which he and everyone watching is taking a video game about football way too seriously."