Last summer, it came to light that the organisers of E3 had left personal details of thousands of media people (including some of our own) in a file anyone online could access. Welp. It didn’t exactly make anyone keen to return to that cacophonous hellhall. But this year they’re really trying not to leak addresses, phone numbers, or anything, for real. In an update about plans for this year’s show, the ESA say “You should also know that we’ve upgraded our media registration process, which received a lot of attention this past summer.” Yeah, some.
“Earning back your trust and support is our top priority,” the ESA said in today’s statement.
“That’s why we rebuilt the E3 website with enhanced and layered security measures developed by an outside cybersecurity firm. This included updating our data management processes, including the handling of personally identifiable information, and we will no longer store that data on our site. We have also changed our registration practices and will collect the minimum information necessary to complete your registration.”
The ESA had left details of 2025 journalists, bloggers, YouTubers, streamers, financial analysts, and such who attended E3 2019 in a publicly-accessible file. These included names, physical addresses, phone numbers, e-mail addresses, and other information people would rather not have out there. The ESA did not apologise in their initial response, though they did say they “regret this occurrence” so that was grand. Mere days later, media lists with thousands more entries from earlier years were found too.
But this year you can definitely trust them.
With large companies like Sony and Electronic Arts stepping back from E3 to run their own marketing events, the ESA have been trying to turn the trade show into more of a public event. They started selling public passes in 2017 and this year will up the number of those to 25,000. And this year, they said today, they are “collaborating with industry insiders and new creative partners, including the tastemakers at iam8bit.com, to reinvigorate the show and, frankly, to shake things up.” So they’ll have slightly subtler designs on the promo t-shirts you keep to line the cat’s basket?