Electronic Arts said Thursday that the company did not purposely omit Colin Kaepernick's name from a song it licensed for its latest game.
The video-game maker came under fire when it was discovered by a Twitter user that Kaepernick's name was censored from YG's song "Big Bank," which is used in the soundtrack for "Madden NFL 19."
"We made an unfortunate mistake with our Madden NFL soundtrack," EA said in a statement issued Thursday evening. "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 August 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."
Big Sean, who makes a guest appearance in the song and performs the verse that references Kaepernick, weighed in on Thursday before EA issued its statement. Kaepernick later thanked Big Sean in a tweet.
Much love brother! Thank you for having my back!✊🏾 https://t.co/yKz3nBMiPb— Colin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7) August 2, 2018
In the song, Kaepernick's name is referenced about halfway through Big Sean's verse when he says, "Feed me to the wolves, now I lead the pack and s---. You boys all cap, I'm more Colin Kaepernick."
Kaepernick drew attention to social inequality issues during the 2016 season by kneeling during the national anthem as a means of protest. He pursued free agency in 2017 but wasn't given a tryout. He filed a collusion suit against the league's 32 owners last October; the case is ongoing.