A petition on AllOut.org in support of Electronic Arts’ denouncement of an anti-gay letter writing campaign has had the number of signees artificially inflated by bots.

AllOut has said that hackers have managed to add between 3,000 and 5,000 signatures to the online petition. It says that it is in the process of removing the fraudulent signees, but can verify 60,000 legitimate signatures.

The site adds it has had no contact with Electronic Arts at any time during the campaign.

“Electronic Arts customers are speaking out loud and clear: Being for equality is good for business,” said AllOut’s executive director Andre Banks. “Groups like the Family Research Council are truly on the ‘dark side’ - they put pressure on companies like EA to block fair, balanced portrayals of gay characters in gaming and other media.

“You don’t have to be a gamer to understand that it makes a real difference for Electronic Arts to present positive portrayals of gays and lesbians to its community of 100 million players.”

“We are not arguing that Electronic Arts is a perfect company, but we know that today, on this issue, they are taking an important stand that should be celebrated and supported.”