RPI Game Exhibit Nixed Over Terrorism Concerns; FBI May Be Involved

March 7, 2008 -

On Monday GamePolitics reported on a brewing video game controversy at Rensselaer Polytechnical Institute in Troy, New York.

The dust-up centered around objections by RPI's College Republicans organization to a planned exhibition by a visiting artist. Wafaa Bilal (left), an Iraqi who is on the faculty of the Art Institute of Chicago and whose brother was killed in the current war, was scheduled to present a hacked version of Night of Bush Capturing, an al Qaeda propaganda game at the campus.

Bilal's exhibit, however, has been canceled by RPI administrators over terrorism concerns as well as protests by some students and alumni. As reported by the Albany Times-Union, Bilal said:
 

It feels like a military camp, not an educational institution.


Bilal maintains that the intent of his exhibit is to show how U.S. strategy in Iraq has helped al Qaeda recruit new members.

Alumni Christopher Lozaga was among those who objected to Bilal's appearance:
 

So long as RPI sponsors these kinds of events, giving absolutely no consideration to military alumnus, friends and family of the university, I will not contribute a dime to the school.


On Wednesday Bilal was removed from an RPI classroom by administrators during a meeting with students. Said media arts professor Branda Miller:
 

It was very unsettling for me and my students. It would be unfortunate if Wafaa Bilal's art exhibition remains closed. The whole point of art is to encourage dialogue.


Bilal told the Times-Union that RPI officials, on orders from school president Shirley Ann Jackson, questioned him about the game mod and whether it portrayed an attack on President Bush. He was also told that federal law enforcement agencies, including the FBI, were planning to attend his exhibit. 

While not commenting on Bilal's case specifically, an FBI official said:
 

I can state that there are situations where it would be appropriate for FBI agents to attend events which are open to the public if the FBI believes that there might be information relevant to national security. FBI agents can attend these events even if an investigation is not opened. But they would only report on information which is relevant to a threat to national security.'


RPI VP William Walker told the Times-Union: 
 

The university is considering various factors relating to the exhibition, and has suspended it pending a more complete review of its origin, content, and intent. Rensselaer fully supports academic and artistic freedom. The question under review regards the use of university resources to provide a platform for what may be a product of a terrorist organization or which suggests violence directed toward the President of the United States and his family.


RPI student body president Julia Leusner added:
 

If Bilal was making a point about the vulnerability of Iraqi civilians to the travesties of the current war, I failed to see it, as did every other student I spoke to.


UPDATE: Newsday has picked up the story. Look for this to get some national attention. From Newsday:
 

"By taking [the exhibit] away, they destroyed the entire objective of it, which is conversation," Bilal said. "I think they're buying time as a tactic here, so they don't look bad. Let's call it what it is, censorship."

Bilal is no stranger to controversy. Some of his work was destroyed at an exhibition at the University of New Mexico, and he's also had government officials confiscate his work from an exhibit in Baghdad.


UPDATE 2: As expected, the RPI story has gone national. Here is Associated Press coverage in the Washington Post.

Comments

I think pulling the exhibit was a bad thing. I think the fostering of dialogue is a good thing. If you don't like it, don't go.

@ JBentley

Well, "freedom of speech" squawking aside, I think this is where the controversy is. A lot of people are yammering and I'm not sure that more than a handful actually KNOW the content of the exhibit.

I so wanted to see this.

@ZippyDSMlee

As i said, the terrorists have won.

I think the school's Alumni are speaking louder than the FBI in this case.

I'm already thinking we lost the war on terror. They won,we're terrified.

I am sorry to see that this will not be shown. So much for the fredom of speech. I guess if anyone finds out that I am against the war in Iraq, I will be labeled a terrorist sympathizer. I better not tell anyone.

If Bilal was making a point about the vulnerability of Iraqi civilians to the travesties of the current war, I failed to see it, as did every other student I spoke to.


It looks like she doesn't talk to very many people. Of all the people who said they attend school or had in the last article, most were supportive of hostign the exhibit.

So long as RPI sponsors these kinds of events, giving absolutely no consideration to military alumnus, friends and family of the university, I will not contribute a dime to the school.


So that is the real reason they pulled it. They were threatened with a loss of funding from donaters. I love that. Money rules high at RPI. Ooh. I should put that on a t-shirt.

It was very unsettling for me and my students. It would be unfortunate if Wafaa Bilal’s art exhibition remains closed. The whole point of art is to encourage dialogue.


Couldn't agree more.

Agree with kurisu7885.

Sad but true.

20 years ago, they would be sipping their wine, and nodding at his boldness in addressing a hard issue. Instead they're afraid he's a loose cannon...
-- If your wiimote goes snicker-snack, check your wrist-strap...

@ Kurisu

I agree whole heartedly and have been saying that since 9/11. The Patriot Act is the perfect example of how the terrorists have won the war on terror.

What do you mean terrorism concerns? They think Bilal is a terrorist, or that the mere sight of this game is going to make people terrorists? Of course, neither one makes sense. Perhaps he should change his name to Bob Johnson. Then he might be allowed to speak freely in this country.

For some reason, I really want to play this game now. Just because the government tells me I can't see it.

@E. Zachary Knight

Well as much as soem may not like him, Carlos Mencia said it best.

"You may as well go ahead and mail your balls to them with a letter that says "Hey Mr. terrorist, you won, I'm terrified"

Score yet another victory for God damned rightwing conservatives and their fundamentalist flunky kin. Freedom gets yet another screwing without even a reach around.

Who cares? I bet the gameplay blows.

Gods forbid anyone suggest that the impressionable, scared, confused, and angry people are easy prey to terrorists...

What this guy is saying isn't anything new, its just common sense and fact... it was seen in Northern Ireland back during the troubles there, it is seen still in Israel/Palastine on both sides, and its been seen in every country invaded for any reason, ever.

If you see your family killed, regardless of the reason, you will become angry.. human nature demands revenge.... and if someone offers you a way of getting it, you might very well take it.

The "War on Terror" is really just another form of this, a bunch of people got killed, so lets go to war to try and solve it.. doesn't work, didn't work in Northern Ireland, won't work in Israel, and won't work here.

we've all learned a very important lesson today: Do not question american foriegn policy.

One of the amusing bits in here is it sounds like the FBI is being reasonable and doing exactly what they should be doing. They hear about something that sounds suspect, they send people to observe and see if there is a problem. No intimidation, no interference, just checking it out.

RPI on the other hand is being kinda slimy and playing the 'We're not liberal! really! see! we love our troops and our beloved president!' card.

@ Neeneko

Excellent observation. The FBI, the freakin FBI for Pete's sake, are acting level headed in this situation, while an educational institution is way over blowing this deal.

They are probably worried about bad press... a sad day for American's, and by extension the world, when a place of learning and debate believes it will get worse press for allowing a thought provoking, if unpopular, idea than for preventing it.

@anonymous - Can you define asinine for me, please?

As it has been for a while, prestigious and beneficial institutes such as hospitals, private schools, and colleges are businesses (and run as such).

You better believe they are pulling his exhibit, and not because he is a threat to National Security. His presence and work, which is good or bad by opinion only, can only result in the loss of money for RPI.

Business first.

Artistic appreciation, differential dialog, reputation, and dignity are in a distant last place.

If it were a matter of National Security, then someone is ignoring the most important principle from Sun Tzu:

"If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle."

The best way to fight terror is education and humor. It seems that RPI refuses to educate, so let me try my hand at humor.

Anyone else think that "Night of Bush Capturing" sounds like some sleazy Japanese hentai game?

@ E. Zachary Knight

It's true that terrorist have terrified America, but have they truly won? Have we given up the fight to protect our boarders? Have given into Islamic extremist and given up our religion and way of life? No, I say no. We are still American's who fight for our rights and freedoms including free speech and expression as well as freedom for religion. Who are you to say they have won when the war has only just begun. I'm a former solider who fought in Iraq. I didn't fight to come home to a bunch of wimps who don't care about their freedoms.

N Thomson
Solider
Gamer
Student

Allow me to play a little bit of the devil's advocate.

A lot of you are complaining that the school is only concerned about money. Well, that is the school's business. Without funds the school will shut down, teachers will lose their jobs, and the students will lose an institution of learning. Haven't we advocated using your pocketbook to protest and censor rather than the government?

I'm not agreeing with this, but if the Alumni are threatening the school, they can either listen or declare bankruptcy.

@ N Thomson

The question is, what are the goals of terrorists? Have they managed to disrupt our way of life? Have they managed to convince our own government to restrict our liberties solely because of terrorist actions? Have they instilled in the American public a sense of fear that degrades their quality of life?

I think those are the ways in which people claim the terrorists "won" or "are winning". I don't see how those factors have anything to do with being "wimps", and it certainly doesn't imply that we "don't care about our freedoms".

I will say, however, that the current administration has absolutely done their best to amplify those feelings of insecurity and terror for their own personal gain. That's part of the problem, even while our government attempts to fight them militarily, it is simultaneously attempting to support them psychologically.

@ Gameboy

You're quite right, alumni influence should be a factor in the school's decision making process. I'm just disappointed with some of the (apparently vocal) alumni.

But without seeing the exhibit to judge its artistic value for myself, it's hard for me to decide whether or not I would want to support it, although my gut says that I don't want to see it canceled.

@ N Thomson

--------
We are still American’s who fight for our rights and freedoms including free speech and expression as well as freedom for religion.
--------

No, we don't fight for freedom of speech or religion. I guess those concepts aren't part of a "post 9/11 world". We fight only because we're still scared shitless. Because somehow meaningful political discourse in this country is a commercial with a menacing voice telling you to be afraid while your children sleep.

We lost when the government was granted unlimited and unsupervised power of surveillance on it's own people. We lost when an entire city shut down when mooninites caused mass hysteria. We lost when congress voted for a war without bothering to discuss the reasons why. We lost when we outlawed liquids on airplanes. We lost when we created the no-fly list.

We let fear get the better of us, and for that we lost. The only winners were politicians savvy enough to take advantage of that fear.

Before anyone misunderstands me, I think the school should of allowed the exhibit. No matter what you do or say, you will offend someone somewhere. At least, if they allowed the exhibit, someone may have learned something. Viewing this work might have inspired a modern day Picasso!

Besides, it's better to ask for forgiveness than permission.

@ N Thomson

I am not a "wimp". Icare about the troops and their families. I care about my freedoms and want to retain them.

Unfortunately the current admenistration has taken some of those liberties from me under the guise of the "war on terror". My fourth ammendment rights have been violated when the Patriot Act was passed. The government now has free reign to tap my phone and internet connection without judicial approval. I find that unsettling.

It is examples like that that show that the terrorists are winning the so called "war on terror"

Everytime Bush opens his mouth in defense of these bills and the war in Iraq, he tells us how we are going to die in terrorist attacks if we don't let him take those liberties away from us.

How is that not the terrorists winning?

"So much for the fredom of speech."

I fail to see where in the constitution, or bill of rights, where it is said that you are garuanteed a platform for your views. RPI is perfectly with in IT'S right to deny Mr. Bilal access to it's facilities to show off his work.

Freedom of speech, is not freedom from the reaction to your speech.

I would say that we also need to look at the less obvious ways in which the Terrorists have "won", although truly defining winners and losers in this struggle will not happen for some time.

Looking at 9/11 as a central event.. what effect has it had on global "western" society, beyond just America.

The world over, governments are restricting their people in the name of national security. Fear and paranoia is on the rise, and everywhere we are told to be on the look out and report anything we think might be strange. If we say that the goal of terrorism, is terror.. then they have certainly done a very good job. For whatever reasons, our own governments and media are only feeding this terror... be it because they truly believe we are in danger, or be it for their own gain, they are doing so.

But let us say that the goal of terrorists.. by which I mean the leaders, not the poor unfortunate souls who are so damaged by life and brainwashed by their leaders that they give their lives up and the lives of others in this way.. is not just to terrify their enemies, but to gain power.

If Power is their goal, and many would say it is, then they are also doing very well indeed.. and beyond just the obvious. 9/11 was the direct cause of the current war on terror.. the cause of the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, and of the current lack of support for a true process for peace in Palestine/Israel. Those who support these wars like to think that they will be able to destroy the terrorists, but it is just not that simple.. every father, every son, ever mother, every brother, every loved one that dies, has a chance of leaving behind someone who loved them and is now alone.. and each of those is a prime target for recruitment, in their grief and rage at the loss of somebody they loved.

This is why we will never defeat Al Queda by invading countries or killing people.. quite simply put, we cannot win the war against terror with traditional military tactics, not even with trade and financial measures.. this is a war of ideology, and it will only be won by changing the minds of those who the enemy traditionally recruits, by politics, by alliances and talking... and, as much as we hate to admit it, by careful surgical strikes that nobody ever knows about.

@ Steve
@ Lumi

I did say that they did make us scared, but that doesn't mean because we are scared we act solely out of total retaliation. We have given up some things to improve others, but didn't we do the same thing or something similar when Japan attacked Pearl Harbor? But yes there has been a couple of generations between that and now. Plus being in a Post 9/11 era doesn’t mean we have given up those freedoms. They maybe suspended on those who are suspected of terrorist activity. But other wise the rest of America isn’t much affected. We still have news papers printing there version of the story Fox News televising their view. We still have people going to Churches, Synagogues, and other places of religious gatherings. We still exercise the rights of speech and expression here without fear of Uncle Sam arresting us because we said or wrote something they didn’t like. But if you are in fear of that your just paranoid. Granted paranoia is more common since 9/11 but we shouldn’t let it run our lives.

N Thomson
Solider
Gamer
Student

@ JBentley

Technically you're correct, but I think the real question is whether or not their decision was justified. Was there really anything in the exhibit to warrant canceling it? Did he really deserve to be pulled out of that classroom?

I think it's pretty obvious that the CRs never saw this exhibit before raising all this fuss.

"We are still American’s who fight for our rights and freedoms including free speech and expression..."

"Who are you to say ... "

Yeah... that pretty much sums up the whole justification of the war right there.

Pretty much the usual "We're over there fighting for your Freedoms so SHUT UP! You don't have the Right to speak in opposition of what's going on or being told by the 'approved" messages of the government."

Yep. This war really makes sense. :/

Nightwng2000
NW2K Software
Nightwng2000 NW2K Software http://www.facebook.com/nightwing2000 Nightwng2000 is now admin to the group "Parents For Education, Not Legislation" on MySpace as http://groups.myspace.com/pfenl

"The university is considering various factors relating to the exhibition, and has suspended it pending a more complete review of its origin, content, and intent."

" Rensselaer fully supports academic and artistic freedom. "

These two comments are in direct opposition to each other.

Hey, I agree that the reason this exhibit got pulled was probably financial. I just wish they'd stop pretending they supported freedom of speech in the same breath.

@ N Thompson

I'm afraid you miss the fundamental contradiction in your post. You claim that America still has it's rights of free speech and freedom of expression. Yet you admit that the freedom is restricted to those suspected of Terrorist activity. saying, "But other wise the rest of America isn’t much affected. "
I take it 'The Rest' means the non-arab, members of america?
If so, don't you realise that by making one rule for one segment of the country's population you've already sacrificed the freedom of your citizens?

Also what exactly is a Solider? is that some sort of adhesive polymer agent? or was spelling not a high priority on the US Army entry exam?

@lumi
And this is where I believe the controversy should be. Over whether his work constituted an eminent threat, whether his work is 'art' that NY state and RPI wished to fund and give a platform to, NOT about the "freedom of speech" that people think is an all encompasing right to say what ever you want with-out reprisal.

Freedom of speech is about letting you say what ever you want with out criminal charges being applied, not about preventing people from hating your guts for saying it.



"you are technically correct, the best kind of correct." - futurama

@N Thomson

"We have given up some things to improve others, but didn’t we do the same thing or something similar when Japan attacked Pearl Harbor?"

If you're going to bring up Pearl, at least make sure the reaction was the same.

The US government is behaving more like during the McCarthy era. "Are you or have you ever been a Muslim?"

The point of terrorism is to use a country's public against them. In that essence, the terrorists HAVE won. You're willing to give up certain freedoms in order to achieve the illusion of safety from the terrorists. But the terrorists know that all they need to do is yell "boo", and your country practically wets itself in the dive for cover. So really while you're safer from the Reids, and other small-time, wannabe, ineffective idiots who do things like bring guns to the airport, you're no safer from the "real" terrorists, the competent ones who spend 5-10 years putting together sleeper cells to pull off 9/11...

This is a classic example of public panic. The mere mention of art that examines the issue of the vulnerability of Iraqis to recruitment, and suddenly everyone's running around like it'll cause 9/11 times 100 (that's 91,100 btw... ;) TA:WP ftw!)
-- If your wiimote goes snicker-snack, check your wrist-strap...

"Also what exactly is a Solider? is that some sort of adhesive polymer agent? or was spelling not a high priority on the US Army entry exam? "

Character assassination is not particularly attractive

Maybe they freaked out cause of the name?

@JBentley

"Over whether his work constituted an eminent threat, whether his work is ‘art’ that NY state and RPI wished to fund and give a platform to, NOT about the “freedom of speech” that people think is an all encompasing right to say what ever you want with-out reprisal."

You're right. It's not freedom of speech. It's about an educational institution (or more importantly, it's financial backers) that claim to support artistic freedom, clamping down on an artist.

It's the principle of the thing. Educational institutions are supposed to be places where artists can push the boundaries without being told they are going "too far". Obviously the alumni have forgotten this.
-- If your wiimote goes snicker-snack, check your wrist-strap...

@ Colonel Finn
@ all

Thank you for your correction of the spelling of Soldier, but none the less your missing my point to enforce the security of our freedoms and rights sometimes we have to give them up to get them back. Yes we still have them. I'm not making this a religous bias or racial bias discussion, that's not the point here. The fact that he is presenting a hacked version of a game regaurdless of who made it and it's content is a large concern. Would you as a board member of a school allow one of your professors of your school allow some one to make a presentation with illegal owned software. Would your ethics as a board member allow you to let it continue? Mine would not reguardless of what is being presented.

N Thomson
Soldier
Gamer
Student

Honestly I fail to see how this is 'Art' or how he contributed to the discussion. He put his face in a game that someone else made. Wow. The original product brings up serious questions about the war and public relations from opposite sides of the conflict. Sticking his face in it does not add to this, and attempting to justify it by saying that he's attempting to bring up commentary on the suffering of average Iraqis doesn't hold water to me.

Also, it looks as if this is a travelling exhibit , which means the content of the work would have been visible before getting to RPI.

You know, unless there's some specific real world data or information that explains how to get past America's defenses or assassinate the President, then I really don't see what the fuss is about.

The exhibit sounds, to me, like a way to see through the "enemy's" point of view. Now I put "enemy" in quotes like that because as we know quite well, defining the "enemy" at this point in time is like trying to contain a fart in a jar.

It's not like back in World War II where the enemies were the clearly defined Nazi (or is the plural "Nazis") of Germany? They had uniforms, insignia, and were damn proud of being who they were. Granted, they were also damn proud of purifying the human race to meet their warped belief system.

I had an interesting discussion with people on another forum who do not believe in the concept of "Evil". They believe that what Evil can not exist as a "True Evil" because what may be Evil to us, is another culture's Good. Case in point, the Nazi (Nazis) believed that they were doing the greater good by following Hitler and exterminating all other non-aryan races. In this case, the Radical Muslims (and I do mean Radical as not all Muslims think this way) believe that what they are doing by fighting America is for their greater good.

Now from what I can tell, the whole notion of this exhibit was to give us, the people of the USA, a chance to see things from the Radical Muslim's point of view and try to understand WHY they thought they are fighting the good fight and why they think they are fighting for truth, justice, and the non-national way.

BUT NOOOOOOO!

Apparently some people got a stick of patriotism so far shoved up their bum that they can't be bothered to think what other people think. It is too much of a challenge to their beliefs that if they were ever to doubt our own "goodness" that their entire society would crumble and the terrorists would win.

To this, I reply with a smack across the head, a smack across the back of the head, a good shaking, and a loud "GET OVER IT!" I would then proceed to take them to the exhibit for a chance to widen their horizons.

Now as far as the FBI are concerned, they just want to make sure there's no sensitive information in this exhibit. Stuff such as actual real life pass codes, blueprints of real world buildings, detailed plans to take down our government, or build bombs.

That stuff is illegal for a reason!

But say I make a game where I'm a super-cyborg or robot with an unlimited supply of ammo and Secret Service agents all happen to drop missiles that are automatically loaded into my missile turret once I step on said dropped missile. I go on a rampage, blow away planes, hell let's say I have rocket boosters that let me fly. I single-handedly decimate D.C., blow up the White House with a couple missiles and bullets, and then grab W. with a mechanized robo-arm and crush him while doing the "I'm crushing your head" bit.

A game like that is pure fantasy and in no way related to anything in real life. It may just be one person's way of venting at the current administration by imagining to be this near-invincible robot who single-handedly blows everything up.

The controls are "Up, Left, Down, Right, Jump, Shoot" with up and shoot launching missiles. Except in flying levels where missiles are infinite and smart bombs that wipe out the screen are finite.

Oh sure, this will teach terrorists how to build a super robot and go on to destroy D.C.! (Sarcasm)

Finally, I do not deny that there is propaganda out there. Whether it be "enemy" propaganda or Patriotic propaganda, it's still propaganda, and by STUDYING said propaganda, we LEARN from it, see through the eyes of others, and gain a level of clairvoyance.

I say let the exhibit go and just let bygones be bygones.

Sheesh!

~Otaku-Man

@Jaberwock
"It’s the principle of the thing. Educational institutions are supposed to be places where artists can push the boundaries without being told they are going “too far”. Obviously the alumni have forgotten this. "

Funny, I thought they were for-profit institutions devoted to providing education to a paying customer.

The students and the alumni are voting in the most dirrect way they can, their donations.

Why aren't they allowed their freedom of speech in saying "We do not support this?"

"The students and the alumni are voting in the most dirrect way they can, their donations.

Why aren’t they allowed their freedom of speech in saying “We do not support this?”

They ARE allowed their freedom of speech. They have every right to say, when they give money, this money can't fund this or that. The thing is, the school invited the artist to do lectures and if he's invited he should be given the freedom to lecture as he sees fit, no matter what groups it offends.

@N Thomson/JBentley

"The fact that he is presenting a hacked version of a game regaurdless of who made it and it’s content is a large concern."

Are you seriously trying to twist this discussion into a discussion of the LEGALITY of a MOD?

You have got to be kidding me.

Irregardless of the way he produced his piece, the fact is they are objecting to the subject matter, not the means. If he had produced this game by hand, from scratch, you can bet the Republican students union would still have their panties in a knot about this...

He could have animated it with pencil and crayon, and they'd still be screaming about it.

"Funny, I thought they were for-profit institutions devoted to providing education to a paying customer."

I guess that would depend on RPI's stated goals, especially the stated goals of it's art department.

Is it an institution where the only goal is to churn out educated members of society ready for the workforce? Or is it an institution that has among it's goals the encouragement of radical thinking towards advancing fields of thought?

If they're going to get pissy about what kind of art gets produced there, why bother having an art department?
-- If your wiimote goes snicker-snack, check your wrist-strap...

"The thing is, the school invited the artist to do lectures and if he’s invited he should be given the freedom to lecture as he sees fit, no matter what groups it offends. "

I couldn't dissagree more.

This is exactly what I've been saying. He's angered their paying customers, who have said "We will stop paying you, till you stop presenting this matereal."

If RPI wishes to continue because they believe the message is important enough that they're willing to lose paying customers, that is their RIGHT. Not their obligation as many are suggesting.

@ JBentley:

"Honestly I fail to see how this is ‘Art’ or how he contributed to the discussion. He put his face in a game that someone else made. Wow. The original product brings up serious questions about the war and public relations from opposite sides of the conflict. Sticking his face in it does not add to this, and attempting to justify it by saying that he’s attempting to bring up commentary on the suffering of average Iraqis doesn’t hold water to me."

Serious question: have you seen the exhibit? Do you know what's in it?

"Funny, I thought they were for-profit institutions devoted to providing education to a paying customer."

Part of that education they're supposed to be providing is the atmosphere of the campus, the opportunity to experience and be exposed to things they couldn't get elsewhere. Students can get "an education" at any of countless colleges and universities; they choose their schools based on many additional factors, not the least of which includes the attitude of the school at large toward important issues.

"The students and the alumni are voting in the most dirrect way they can, their donations."

You're correct, but I think that people are overlooking the fact that there are probably at least as many students and alumni who will be voting the opposite way with their donations as well.

@ N Thomson

"The fact that he is presenting a hacked version of a game regaurdless of who made it and it’s content is a large concern."

Why exactly is that?

"Would you as a board member of a school allow one of your professors of your school allow some one to make a presentation with illegal owned software."

Illegally owned? How do you figure that?

"Would your ethics as a board member allow you to let it continue?"

I can tell you that in 2005, one of the games at the RPI Game Symposium was a Half-Life mod. I can also tell you there are a HELL of a lot more copies of Half-Life floating around that campus than there are registration keys for it. Should the gaming curriculum fail them for using a pirated copy (illegally owned software) to create a mod (hack) as a part of their class project, regardless of the educational or artistic value of said mod?

@Ian Cooper

"They ARE allowed their freedom of speech. They have every right to say, when they give money, this money can’t fund this or that."

As I said, it kinda betrays the principle of the institution. If you are attaching conditions to your donation, then you don't really believe in the principle most educational art institutions are founded on.

Funding the arts is tricky that way.

I can understand not wanting your donations to fund the art department, but if you agree the money can be used for art, then really it seems a rather sad restriction to limit the kind of art, or the range of ideas allowed to be expressed...
-- If your wiimote goes snicker-snack, check your wrist-strap...

What's bothered me is that it is the government, for the most part, that keeps telling us "Teh terrists are around every corner and they want to git you!"

If we had just ignored them after cleaning up New York, we would be a freer, happyier place. Terrorists don't attack to kill people, they attack to incite fear, to create change. To fight them would mean refusing to change, refusing to fear. Instead we have enacted a ton of new laws, beefed up check points in our airports, and regularly are reminded by the government about how scared we should be, "We are now at threat level tangerine, report your neighbor if he has excess facial hair!"

I won't say the terrorists have won the war, but they certainly won that battle. They have a whole country quaking even though they don't have many weapons, not much of an army, or indoor plumbing in their caves.

I'm not afraid of the terrorists anymore. I'm afraid to fly because of the airlines. Airports and airlines might as well be another country, seeing as how laws are different there, you have to pass through customs, and they hate foriengers (to be clear about this, I'm not talking non-Americans, I'm talking non-Airliners).

@ Jabrwock

"As I said, it kinda betrays the principle of the institution. If you are attaching conditions to your donation, then you don’t really believe in the principle most educational art institutions are founded on.

Funding the arts is tricky that way.

I can understand not wanting your donations to fund the art department, but if you agree the money can be used for art, then really it seems a rather sad restriction to limit the kind of art, or the range of ideas allowed to be expressed… "

Eh, it is really, REALLY a stretch to refer to RPI as an "education art institution". RPI is an engineering school; the art department has seen HUGE advances in just the last few years, since Shirley Ann took over. In a nutshell, the whole art thing is new there.

That said, I'd have no problem with someone making a donation and saying "this is only to be used for math" or "this is only to be used for electronic art" or "this is only to be used for purchasing akido mats for the union club that meets every Monday and Thursday night" (though at that point you should probably just buy the mats yourself and donate those). But there's a ton of room between "you must use this money for this" and "you may use this money for anything except for an Iraqi art exhibit".

Earmarking donations is a really common thing, it doesn't bother me too much, really.
 
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Zenemulator...it's not just a slap job that makes "some" work..they do it for each which is why they work so well. I would rather have the quality over just a slap job.07/30/2014 - 5:48pm
ZenMatthew there is a difference between "worked" and "accurate". You play the Nintendo VC titles they play as damn close to the original as possible. The PSP would just run them as best they could, issues and all. And Masked...EACH VC title has their own07/30/2014 - 5:48pm
MaskedPixelanteOnce again, the 3DS already HAS a GBA emulator, it just can't run at the same time as the 3DS OS.07/30/2014 - 4:54pm
Matthew Wilsonyou cant street pass in ds mode ether, and if moders can make a gba emulator that runs very well on the psp as I understand it. you are telling me that Nintendo devs are not as good as moders?07/30/2014 - 4:49pm
Zenperformance. Halo 1 and 2 worked great because they actually did custom work on each of them...just like Nintendo does now lol07/30/2014 - 4:08pm
Zenexisting hardware while the GBA has to be emulated completely. Same reason the 360 couldn't run most Original Xbox games correctly, or had issues because they just did "blanket approach" for their emulation which led to game killing bugs or horrible07/30/2014 - 4:07pm
ZenSora/Matthew: It's not just Miiverse, but the whole idea of streetpass and things like that would be affected if the OS is not running. And just because a 3DS game can be downloaded and run does not mean that GBA can as easily. Those 3DS games use the07/30/2014 - 4:06pm
E. Zachary KnightSleaker, How is that different from every other credit card company targeting high school and college students?07/30/2014 - 1:40pm
Sleaker@EZK - I think some people are concerned beacuse it's a predatory technique targetted toward younger people that don't understand on top of offering the worst interest rates of any retailer around.07/30/2014 - 11:33am
MaskedPixelantehttp://www.joystiq.com/2014/07/30/europe-gets-long-detained-shin-megami-tensei-4-at-cut-price/ "Sorry you had to wait a year for SMT4, would a price cut make it sting less?"07/30/2014 - 10:29am
NeenekoI would hope not. Though it is not unheard of for store specific cards to be pretty good.07/30/2014 - 8:17am
E. Zachary KnightDoes anyone, or at least any intelligent person, expect a retail branded credit card to be anything close to resembling a "good deal" on interest rates?07/30/2014 - 7:13am
SleakerGamestop articles popping up everywhere about their ludicrous new Credit card offerings at a whopping pre-approval for 26.9% APR07/29/2014 - 10:19pm
Matthew Wilsonhttp://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2014/07/podcasting-patent-troll-we-tried-to-drop-lawsuit-against-adam-carolla/ the podcasting patent troll scum is trying to turn tail and run.07/29/2014 - 9:50pm
MaskedPixelanteOf course it's improved. At launch, Origin was scanning your entire hard drive, but now it's just scanning your browsing history. If that's not an improvement, I dunno what is!07/29/2014 - 8:59pm
Papa Midnighthttp://www.escapistmagazine.com/articles/view/video-games/columns/experienced-points/12029-Has-EAs-Origin-Service-Improved-Any-Over-the-Last-Two-Years07/29/2014 - 8:25pm
Sora-ChanSo it's just a matter of having better emulation software. If it can be done with a 3DS game, with all the memory and what not it takes up, it can be done with a GBA title through emulation.07/29/2014 - 7:30pm
Sora-ChanOther VC titles for the NES and Gameboy had the same setup where you couldn't access the homescreen without quitting out of the game til a later update when those games were released for the public outside of the founder program.07/29/2014 - 7:28pm
Sora-Chanthe 3DS can, and does, run GBA games, as seen by the founder gifts, which included a number of GBA titles. As for running GBA games and still having access to the home screen, I beleive it's more of the game emulation software needs to be updated.07/29/2014 - 7:27pm
Matthew Wilsonthe 3ds already swaps os's with the original ds. plus I dont think people expect miverse interaction when playing a gba game.07/29/2014 - 6:06pm
 

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