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EA promise to "do better" after their first Sims Summit "did not fairly represent" players

EA responds to claims it ignored black simmers during the Behind The Sims Summit

EA held their first Behind The Sims Summit last week, revealing plenty of Sims updates, including a very early look at the next game in the series, Project Rene. Despite this big news, discussion around the event has focused on EA’s lack of community representation, as they only included one “black simmer” onscreen during a stream full of other content creators. Black content creators have been a significant part of The Sims' online presence for years, creating custom content, mods and more.

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After extensive backlash from the community, EA acknowledged the criticism on The Sims' official Twitter page: "Our creator segments during the Behind The Sims Summit did not fairly represent our vast community of players," they said. "Black Simmers deserve to feel seen in all that we do at The Sims, so we're holding ourselves accountable to this mistake and will do better moving forward."

EA’s statement raised a few eyebrows in the community. Prolific streamer and Sims content creator Ebonix responded to EA’s statement, saying: “Accountability is the first step, but we know accountability without action is just dreams sold.” She continues: “There needs to be genuine, meaningful action. Unprovoked by these circumstances. We will see!”

EA then responded directly to Ebonix, saying: "You are right in your frustrations, & we let you down. We owe it to you & each of our Black creators & players to make sure you are seen & celebrated for all that you bring to The Sims & The Sims community."

The controversy has since stirred other fans to look at The Sims recent history of neglecting black cultures, despite a sizable community of black simmers. One Twitter user compiled a list of every Sims 4 pack added since launch, finding that many updates have highlighted cultures around the world, including a few dedicated to the UK. But additions focusing on African and Caribbean cultures are limited.

A petition to “improve black representation and acknowledge black culture” in The Sims lays out several ways EA could improve the situation in the future. The petition lists that EA should highlight more black content creators on stream, collaborate with black simmers for custom content as they have done in the past, and hire more black Sim Gurus - a team of Maxis employees who moderate forums and interact with fans online.

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Kaan Serin

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Kaan Serin has been floating around as a games media freelancer ever since graduating with an English/Film degree. He now spends his free time campaigning for Banjo-Kazooie’s return
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