EA Sports: Preparing to Drop Tiger Woods? - TheStreet



) -- One of

Tiger Woods'

most loyal sponsors may have begun second-guessing itself.


Electronic Arts


insisted many times that its relationship with Woods hadn't been affected by the scrutiny over his extramarital adventures, the media began to take the constancy of Electronic Arts' support for the golfer for granted.

It seemed that Woods was in the clear with Electronic Arts.

But then on January 13, online gamer's guide


reported that Electronic Arts had discreetly sponsored a survey about Tiger Woods on Web survey site

Greenfield Online


The survey questions tried to gather the public's views of Electronic Arts' EA Sports division and EA Sports'

Tiger Woods PGA Tour Online

game, on the heels of the revelations of Woods' extramarital affairs.

The survey begins with general questions about sports games, then surprises survey takers with questions like:

"EA SPORTS makes a Tiger Woods video game. Has the controversy made your impressions of EA SPORTS more or less favorable, or has it had no impact?" and "Has the controversy made you more or less likely to buy a Tiger Woods related video game in the future?"

EA Sports has indeed been a force of loyal partner to Woods, compared to


(T) - Get Report



(ACN) - Get Report



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Gillette division and

TAG Heuer

, who have all either dropped or limited Woods' ads. At the beginning of the month, EA Sports' president Peter Moore even dedicated a blog posting to "Tiger Woods PGA Tour Online," calling it a "breakthrough experience."

With news of the survey circulating the Web, some are beginning to wonder whether EA Sports has been harboring doubts about its relationship with Woods all this time after all.

-- Reported by Andrea Tse in New York

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