Buying or selling Battlefield 3 in Iran is illegal. The software has been, effectively, banned from sale throughout the middle eastern country. EA, in fact, has no official resellers in Iran.
However, Battlefield 3 has been available around Iran in an illegal, pirated format since the game’s release. According to the report from AFP, raids had been conducted on these illegal sellers before the ban had even been made public. Transgressors have actually been arrested for moving pirated copies of the product.
With more than 5,000 petition signers, an Iranian Youth group vocalized the reasoning for their distaste for EA and Battlefield 3. Here it is, from their petition:
“We understand that the story of a videogame is hypothetical … (but) we believe the game is purposely released at a time when the US is pushing the international community into fearing Iran…”
Most of you readers are now probably scratching your heads over the suggestion that EA and DICE, both international companies, worked together to fuel the US and its propaganda machine. It doesn’t make much sense to me, either, but I suppose it’s easy to see a game’s release as part of a government ploy to further train and brainwash citizens…maybe?
Granted, the opinion above is probably not consistent with the majority of Iranian youth. The 5,000 signing members of this petition may represent a minority opinion that conflicts with the potentially general consensus that this is, in fact, pure fiction. It’s game, after all, and it’s certainly not the first piece of mainstream media to make a place like Iran the backdrop for “evil,” as wrong as that may be.
If you’ve played Battlefield 3, what’s your stance on the use of Iran as a story point for the fictitious military campaign within this plot? Is it part of a conspiracy to brainwash the masses, or was it nothing more than a choice born out of contemporary happenings?