Are You Working on Your Presidential Debate Video? The Other Side is...

August 7, 2007 -

Yesterday the Entertainment Consumers Association (ECA) announced its support for game issue-oriented videos created for the upcoming CNN / YouTube Republican Presidential Debate.

Everyone who submits a game consumer-oriented video question in accordance with YouTube's guidelines for the debate will receive a free T-shirt from the ECA.

Think it's not important? 

Think again. Those on the other side of the issue are making debate videos as well.

Joystiq's Ross Miller offers even more reasons to make a video.


say what you want, but i'd fuck her.

that woman should not have kids if she does not know how to take care of them.

@ Orangecrush

I would vote for you :)

By and by, can any gamer ladies out there make a video backing the video game industry? I haven't seen any... So far, just mens protecting it and this lady attacking it...

In other words, you want the state to take care of your children rather than you? What you are asking for is censorship and anit-American ideals. If course, she is a soccer mom from California, so I kinda knew what she was going to say before she said it. (I almost predicted it word for word with the exeption of the school thing)

I actually talked to this woman, and she's a very kind-hearted person. She even took the time to actually elaborate on what she meant, but of course, things did seem too broad.

Here is what she wrote to me after I asked her questions about her video:

Dear [redacted],

I want to thank you for your time. I very much appreciate the time and effort you took to write your letter to me.

I think there will always be a debate as to what people think is explicit and not explicit. My video was posted to be a catalyst for expanding the discussion.

You are so right...legislation does not nurture children but a leader with a strong moral compass combined with a good heart can inspire young people to have high self esteem and confidence in themselves. Although our past leaders are not perfect the words (coined by my friend, Norman Cousins who was one of Kennedy's speech writers)...spoken by President Kennedy, "Ask not what your country can do for you but what you can do for your country"...inspired millions and empowered them to believe that their efforts could make a difference.

Children want to know that they make a difference. That they are valuable, strong and resourceful. They want to know that they are loved and valued and that they have the power and creativity to take part in designing their local environment and community at large.

I am asking this question on video to see what kind of response I might get in terms of how seriously a candidate might approach efforts to uplift and motivate youth (and all ages).

There are many points I could address in your letter but I think what I would just prefer to do is honor the time and consideration you put into your communication...and to honor your right to have a different point of view. (In some areas...I quite agree with you and other individuals who made postings on my video).

[redacted personal criticism]

I really want to wish you well. I love your sincerity and the manner in which you articulate your point of view. It is clear you have genuine peacemaking skills and those are some of the most important skills you will need when you embark on the journey of being a parent.

[redacted personal criticism]

I really wish you well...and hope you have a wonderful time sharing your enthusiasm for gaming with your future children...but most of all have a wonderful time sharing your love with them because I can tell you will have a lot of that to share with them. They will truly be lucky kids.

Wishing You All The Best,
Sharon Anne Fox

The stuff I redacted were some personal comments upon me, and aren't really related.

Needless to say, I can't really say this is "the other side" as she has her own campaign for another reason...

Lets play sum XBOX gamertag is CwalkinDaTurf..i got others but mite as well give it out here...hahaha idc bout dis lady...she has a right to shout her opinion but doesnt have a right to what we shuld be doin with our dont listen to her...haha lets play sum halo 2 already ahaha

Unfortunately people like this woman are the ones that actually come out and vote on election days. Far more of us who are serious gamers need to actually turn off the console on election day and make our voices heard!
(website coming soon)

SHutup bitch hahaha..people have the right to play video games or watever sort of violence they want..u have no right to hold freedoms like that against can do wat they want..hell im still a kid..i play Halo 2 and alt he violent games..but im still a good kid...i maintain straight A's i go to one of the top high schools in the world...and look at me...keep this stuff to urself

"As President I'd come to your house, slap you across the face, and remove your children from your home for being too lazy to take care of them yourself."

I'll vote for whichever candidate tells hippies like this woman that if violence in the media is their major concern, to turn off their kids damn TV/Console/Computer and stop buying M rated games for 12 year old Timmy! Or even better yet, why doesn't she stop worrying about media, which mirrors society (violence echoes violence people) and start focusing on redirecting the majority of the wasted money the DoD gets (more than half the entire federal budget) to programs that might benefit society, like education, health care, the arts, renewable energy, and the like. If your gonna be a hippie be a real hippie damn it.

Finally saw the video question. Boy was that nuts. I hope that we get a good question out there.

Mr. Blond: Yes, those were excellent comments. =)

Look at the 3 comments I left (under leper73). I basically debunk her claims about the dangers of violent media, the problems with the studies she may rely on, and how media violence can be helpful to kids (didn't have enough room to link to Gerard Jones' article, though).


im hoping that this question wont ever see the light of day hold on someone at the door oh its mr reality . . . .

Please don't go to the video and be rude to the lady. She sees violent entertainment as a valid issue and she's raising a question about it to politicians. Given that people like her don't read game sites like we do, they are less likely to understand the medium. The appropriate way to handle this sort of situation is to calmly explain that games, like other media, constitute free speech and that it isn't a realm where the government should be getting involved.

People like these are the threats to gamers' rights and lifestyles, not Jack Thompson, and not even the politicians. Aside from letting our officials know that we don't want them telling us how to raise our kids, we need some sort of combined effort to tell these parents that their fears are unfounded, and that viewing some violence may have some beneficial effects on their kids.

These are the types of voters the politicians want to pander to. People who will accept talking points as answers and make decisions based on sound bites.

I wouldn't be surprised to find out that she's a Romney supporter planting an easy question for him to dish out a canned response to. It's a cornerstone of his campaign.

I want to see a candidate who will pledge to fight for constitutionally protected speech, even if they don't necessarily agree with the content. Ultrareligious conservatives like Brownback and his ilk would ban Harry Potter books for teaching kids witchcraft and black magic, if they thought they could get away with it.

Silly soccer moms like the one in the video are the ones that empower politicians to think they have a chance at breaking the most important right our founding fathers believed in. (and hey, if it gets defeated in the courts, it was 'activist' judges shooting down a 'common-sense' law, right?)

I wonder, as a teacher, how she feels about the government trying to impose 'creation science', 'intelligent design', and other pseudo-scientific mumbo-jumbo as part of a child's education. After all, you can't 'nurture childhood' by telling a kid they share 99% of their DNA with chimps. They will grow up to act like monkeys!

Ah yes, the moral sewer. Good call.

im willing to bet if theres enough questions at least one will get posted

Since this the GOP debate, Romney has been all over this issue of late. Just search him. Brownback as well.

These are exactly the arguments that need to be made not to each other, but to those like Sherona who believe what they say, who believe that it's the government's job to regulate everything. Well, good, effective regulations are already in place. The MPAA and the ESRB do their job, but if a parent doesn't use these FREE systems and guidelines, where do they get off blaming the people who make those media?
This is what we're up against. Paranoid blame-pushers and ignorant bandwagoners. This should not be a hard fight to win once we get vocal about it.

"As President of the United States, what will you do to nurture the childhood of these youngsters?"

And now a word from our news corespondent Morbo:

"Government doesn't work that way! Good night!"

Can you folks help me pull a short list of prominent Republicans and Democrats that have been supporters or sponsors of video game legislation?

So far I have Brownback, Clinton, Lieberman. Any other big names you can pull from the GP archives? I will be working on a video and want to hit all the big names.



"If that were the case all those laws wouldn’t have been passed in the first place."

And guess who the biggest supporters of those laws are? Yup, parents. Same with any scapegoating that has ever happened. The only people who support these laws, are parents, or people who think they should be allowed to tell parents how to raise their kids. IE parental wannabes, or people who believe their children are perfect, and it's just everyone else who is incapable of raising their own kids.

Ask any WASP mother about their children, and how they were raised. Now ask the same question, but about the neighbor's kids. Yeah outside negative influences will be mentioned, but it'll usually fall back to criticism that the neighbor parent is "letting" the kid be exposed to it, or that they "raised them wrong, so they can't help it if they're influenced".

The ONLY time outside influence is the majority blame, is when it's happening to YOUR kids, because the only other thing you could blame is your upbringing methods or genetics, which obviously the parent wouldn't want to do...
-- If your wiimote goes snicker-snack, check your wrist-strap...

@Father Time

It was shown on CNN. They already replayed the Democratic one once, and they'll probably replay it again closer to the Republican debate.

I would empower parents to make the right choices.

Vote for LightWarrior for president!


I think I'm going to ask them "If you plan to interfere with game sales, are you going to do the same for books/movies?"
It'll never get chosen, but at least I'll be able to say I'm politically active.

"On the other hand, society puts any faults in your child squarely on your shoulders as a parent"

If that were the case all those laws wouldn't have been passed in the first place. Gamers are the de facto scapegoat for all society's wrongs ever since Mortal Kombat first came out. Before that it was LARPers. Before that it was rock fans. Before that it was comic books. Before that it was witches. It's never been the fault of the parents.

Call me a skeptic, but what are the odds that our side of the argument is even going to be presented to the canidates? Let's face it, it's at least 100 times easier to try and preach on the alleged EVILS of games, rather than try and defend them.

I'm willing to bet $5 that our questions never get asked, and that the questions of how to regulate games do.

-.- But I'm pessimistic about politics anyway.

^They probably won't choose questions that defend video games. I'm still convinced this youtube debate idea is the same old thing, except for the fact that multiple people are asking the same old questions.
-What are you going to do for my welfare?: (insert welfare plan that would never go into action)
-What about crime? (I'll do a lot if you get me in office)
etc. etc.

oh i thought they haven't happened yet. Err how do i get to those debates anyway?

@Father Time

The Democratic YouTube debate already happened, last month. There weren't any questions on games, but there was a pretty ugly spat sparked between Clinton and Obama that continued for a while. :)

If it's not too much trouble, could someone post the actual page on YouTube for this video? My computer has video issues, and it's not showing up here, but it will on the actual site.

gentlemen start your cameras. When we get to the democratic debate (featuring hillary clinton) this may get ugly.


"lets be honest shes just asking for someone to tell her that her problems are not her fault"

As a parent, you like to believe that you are doing the best job you can in raising your kids. Admitting to being a bad or inadequate parent is a hard thing to do.

On the other hand, society puts any faults in your child squarely on your shoulders as a parent, when really it's a combination of many things. A bad kid is not necessarily entirely the fault of bad parenting.
-- If your wiimote goes snicker-snack, check your wrist-strap...

She sounds so angry, it seems she has some issues of her own.

true like i said maybe im just over reacting

She does not point out video games specifically, though. That's a definite plus.


"maybe im over reacting wouldnt be my first time. but it just seems like shes complaining “i saw something bad and its up to you to make sure nothing bad ever happens again” "

I'm pretty sure that's what she's asking too, but she at least worded it in such a way that there's wiggle room to talk about "providing tools to parents" without resorting to "I'm gonna tell people what they can and can't buy/make"
-- If your wiimote goes snicker-snack, check your wrist-strap...

Why should parents have to filter what their children watch, why should they put in the effort it takes to raise a child? Let the government do it, we all know it's a good thing when the government gets as much power as they want.

Why not legislate against bad parenting, why are bad parents never an issue when someone shoots up a school or stabs a nurse?

I've seen more people try blame Harry Potter for child violence than I have bad parenting.

Oh that's right, you shift the blame over to the easiest target, that way you avoid all responsibility just like you did when raising the child..

Good game America.

i understand jaberwock, lets me say this at age 5 i fell in an amusement park, it was a nasty landing i still have a scar today, so whos fault was it that i fell or was it just bad luck, my opinion is that its bad luck, but i fear that some people would try and legislate all luck (good and bad) out of the world

maybe im over reacting wouldnt be my first time

but it just seems like shes complaining "i saw something bad and its up to you to make sure nothing bad ever happens again"

its this kind of bullshit that politicians feed off of and thats what bothers me most.

lets be honest shes just asking for someone to tell her that her problems are not her fault

I would hope that smart gamers who made videos for the debate would be careful to walk the line between both sides of the issue. reiterating the importance of minding the welfare of our children while at the same time minding the constitution. If you come at it from a solely GAMER perspective, I seriously doubt it will even make it in to the republican debate and the woman above will.

We need to stay away from the "US vs THEM" mentality... it indeed takes a village yadda yadda...

I am so sick of the idea that children are horribly fragile and will crack at the first exposure to violent images. Especially when the idea comes paired with the theory that if you just shelter children from this "dangerous" media they will grow up to be model citizens and know how to handle real life.

Okay. For one, she didn't specify games and used the vague "media." On the other hand, though, she asks the government to [nurture] the children. Parent's job, maybe?

And, to defend myself, I simply can't put up a youtube debate video. First, I don't have a digital camcorder or any other fancy video equipment. My dad has an old camcorder, you know, the VHS ones. Ugh. Second, I shake like a leaf in front of a classroom, imagine me in a youtube video. There we go.


"Shoot the Germans, anyone?"

My father in law played that one. :)

The one thing I *do* like about her question is that it's pretty open-ended. It doesn't ask "how will you regulate the industry", even if that's what it implies. So it leaves it open to the candidate to talk about educating parents to use the tools available, if that's what the candidate supports instead of regulation...
-- If your wiimote goes snicker-snack, check your wrist-strap...


Actually it may be a debate video. Specifically CNN has taken to accepting Youtube video questions for republican candidates during it's airing of republican presidential debates.

@ vera

tnx for sharing spam


It's times like these I wish I wasn't camera shy and would join YouTube.

@Black Manta, Gameboy

I'd just like to add to your points in that I wonder what methodology this woman used to conclude her students are getting more violent. Did she see them point their fingers and shout "bang" at each other, and assume they got if from Halo? Kids have been playing games like that ('Shoot the Germans,' anyone?) way before their were video games, TV, or Ron Jeremy. Did she catch two students kicking each other and assume that learned it from Jet Li? Again, schoolyard fights are hardly a recent phenomonon.

Also, how does she conclude that it's the media that's responsible for her students' behavior? I mean, heaven forbid trouble at home (parents divorced, fighting, etc.) might have something to do with it.

To reiterate, not only it she ignoring the chicken-egg argument, it would also seem that she is focusing primarily on one factor and treating the others as secondary. Now, unless she elaborates on this matter, I can't be sure. None of us can be sure. It would be great if she came on this site like many critics have recently.
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