Mobile Games Biz Blew Opportunity to Lobby FTC

April 24, 2009 -

Mobile game makers missed a chance to get their issues on the Federal Trade Commission's radar, according to a telecommunications lawyer who tracks game issues.

Writing for Gamasutra, Steve Augustino (left) notes that a just-issued FTC report, Beyond Voice: Mapping the Mobile Marketplace, devotes but a single paragraph - out of 54 pages - to mobile gaming. The report is the result of a two day FTC town hall conference held in May, 2008.

From Augustino's article:

There is no discussion of app stores, of the impact of the carrier deck, of other handsets as gaming platforms... of innovative games taking advantage of location capabilities of phones, or any other significant development in the mobile gaming marketplace.

There also was no discussion of the PSP, DS or DSi and the implications that wi-fi and VoIP create... It’s too bad, for this would have been a good opportunity to paint a fuller picture of the games industry and also could have been a vehicle for addressing impediments to the further growth of the platform.

Augustino doesn't blame government bureaucrats for the oversight. Instead, he faults the mobile game industry for failing to take the initiative. He told GamePolitics:

I do not fault the FTC. They organized this conference based on the entities that they knew about or that expressed an interest in participating.  My point is that the games industry is being silent and that the silence could harm them.  Too much of what the industry does is defensive... The industry cannot win if it always plays defense. 

 

I think the FTC "Mapping the Mobile Marketplace" is an example of a missed opportunity for the industry to discuss its successes and to present a different image to the policy makers.


Comments

Re: Mobile Games Biz Blew Opportunity to Lobby FTC

 This seems like another example of the games industry not understanding PR and government relations. It's bad enough that they don't take any action to defend themselves whenever some half-crazed political pundit screams about how some particular video game is destroying the world.

I don't understand how they can just let something like this slip through their fingers.

 
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E. Zachary KnightInfo, or they could have left it only for people in your friends list.05/26/2015 - 7:21am
Infophileas being "family friendly." A kid could easily flip an option and be hit with a torrent of abuse they weren't expecting.05/26/2015 - 5:30am
InfophileI think Nintendo was between a rock and a hard place with voice chat in Splatoon. Leave it in, and jerks will drive off younger players. Leave it out, and competitive players won't play. Even if it were in but disabled by default, they couldn't sell it...05/26/2015 - 5:29am
Matthew Wilsonthis is a nice video on P.T https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K-85jO6nRNQ05/25/2015 - 11:57pm
Matthew Wilsonmaybe, but its still kinda sad even as a joke.05/25/2015 - 11:51pm
Goth_SkunkThe best commentary is delivered through humour.05/25/2015 - 11:36pm
Andrew EisenIt's not needed. It's a joke. Albeit one with quite a bit of commentary packed into it.05/25/2015 - 10:59pm
Matthew Wilsonmot game related, but still interesting. http://www.polygon.com/2015/5/25/8654983/jurassic-world-chris-pratt-apology the fact that this is even needed in modern culture is a embarrassment.05/25/2015 - 10:26pm
Matthew Wilsonyeah, but with no voice chat its doa.05/25/2015 - 9:48pm
TechnogeekYet, you're going to be hard-pressed to find anyone other than insecure 2EDGY4U teenagers seeing it as anything other than an extremely fun game.05/25/2015 - 8:36pm
TechnogeekSplatoon's probably the best example at this point. Gameplay-wise, it's a team-based third-person shooter with a significant online component. It's rated E10.05/25/2015 - 8:36pm
TechnogeekThe silliest thing about most of the Nintendo hatred is that they may be the last company that interprets "family-friendly" as meaning "fun for more than just the really young kids".05/25/2015 - 8:33pm
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Zenpretty well without getting "nasty". Many people are disappointed in the decision and the about face on the status of the games development.05/25/2015 - 4:22pm
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Goth_SkunkAs demonstrated by Ian's remarks, that 'market of possible fans' is apparently negligible.05/25/2015 - 4:18pm
Zeninformation while other versions had everything talked about openly.05/25/2015 - 4:15pm
ZenYeah, I've read through it and wanted to make sure I had it quoted correctly. I get there are issues, but this is horribly unprofessional and just burning a market of possible fans..many of which supported them and were waiting while getting little to no05/25/2015 - 4:15pm
Goth_SkunkOh wow. That's not even misquoted, he actually said that. Though for additional context in previous pages, he truly does not think highly of Nintendo console owners, and claims that in the industry, he's not alone.05/25/2015 - 4:12pm
 

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