EA apologizes for censoring Colin Kaepernick’s name out of song in ‘Madden 19’

Former NFL quarterback and social justice activist Colin Kaepernick, left, receives the Amnesty International Ambassador of Conscience Award for 2018 from Amnesty International Secretary General Salil Shetty in Amsterdam, Saturday April 21, 2018. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)

Video game publishing company EA has apologized for removing Colin Kaepernick’s name from a song included in the soundtrack of Madden 19.

The soundtrack for the game, which is in its public beta testing phase, features the YG song “Big Bank,” in which rapper Big Sean references the former NFL quarterback. But in the soundtrack included in the game, Kaepernick’s name is censored.

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According to as statement released on Friday by the company, it did not have the rights to include Kaepernick in the game. As a result, one of the developers working on the game believed that this included any and all reference to him, including the lyric, and therefore his name should be removed from the game.

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“We made an unfortunate mistake with our Madden NFL soundtrack,” EA said. “Members of our team misunderstood the fact that while we don’t have rights to include Colin Kaepernick in the game, this doesn’t affect soundtracks. We messed up, and the edit should never have happened. We will make it right, with an update to Madden NFL 19 on Aug. 6 that will include the reference again. We meant no disrespect, and we apologize to Colin, to YG and Big Sean, to the NFL, to all of their fans and our players for this mistake.”

Others quickly came to the defense of Kaepernick, including Big Sean, the rapper who wrote the player into the lyric and other athletes.

Kaepernick recieved widespread attention for kneeling during the national anthem while he was an NFL player to protest racial inequality and police brutality in the US. He has had difficulty signing with other teams since he opted our of his contract with the San Francisco 49ers and has filed a lawsuit against the league as he believes he’s been blackballed by owners in the league.

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Madden NFL football is one of the top selling video games in the world. A new edition of the game is released every year.

Keapernick was also not featured in last years edition.

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