It was a tragic month in August for the video gaming community after a gamer started shooting at a “Madden” qualifier event in Florida.
Video game maker Electronic Arts canceled several “Madden” qualifier events after the fatal shooting in Jacksonville. Two people and the gunman were killed during a live stream of the “Madden NFL 19” tournament.
EA chief executive Andrew Wilson has said that he was “filled with shock and grief” and that staff had been “working non-stop to do what we can” in response to the shooting.
The company has pledged to donate $1 million to a fund it is setting up for the victims of the fatal shooting.
EA said: “The events… in Jacksonville will impact the gaming community forever. We can’t begin to understand the pain so many are going through.”
The company tweeted, “Contributions will go to the victims, including the families of Taylor Robertson, Elijah Clayton and all those who were affected.”
Social media was impressed with the company’s move, with one user on Twitter Syernide, tweeting, “This should be shared with as many people as possible. This affects all communities as we lost member of our gaming family. EA has set a shining example of what we as gamer could and can achieve together even if we play different games.#gamedev #gaming #support #fundraiser”
Players Taylor Robertson, 28, and Elijah Clayton, 22 were both killed in the shooting. The shooter, David Katz, was 24 years old.
“We have made a decision to cancel our three remaining Madden Classic qualifier events while we run a comprehensive review of safety protocols for competitors and spectators,” said EA Chief Executive Officer Andrew Wilson.
The event where the shooting broke out was a qualifying tournament for the Madden Classic.
“It is an unthinkable tragedy that Taylor Robertson and Elijah Clayton, two of our top Madden competitors, lost their lives in this way. They were respected, positive and skilled competitors, the epitome of the players and personalities at the heart of our community,” said a company statement.
“We’ve all been deeply affected by what took place in Jacksonville,” said Wilson. “This is the first time we’ve had to confront something like this as an organization, and I believe the first time our gaming community has dealt with a tragedy of this nature.”