Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

December 7, 2010 -

The Star Press (which describes itself as the "news source for East Central Indiana") writer Jeffrey M.. McCall pens a two-page editorial called "Violent video games not an issue worthy of First Amendment protection," in which he attempts to lay out a case for Schwarzenegger v. EMA.

First, an explanation as to what the author thinks the entertainment industry really wants.. apparently it isn't freedom of expression:

"As usual, when it comes to controversial media content, the entertainment industry is trumpeting its First Amendment rights -- in this case to market violent video games to minors. Don't be fooled, however; these media producers have no real interest in First Amendment philosophy. They only want to make as much money as possible, even at the expense of our kids' emotional development."

The next paragraph shows that the author is going by what the State of California said before the Supreme Court, and not his own first-hand experience with games. He talks about "Postal," a game that no young kid in America wants to play:

"The games in question feature graphic portrayals of violence, carried out by the video game players. Police officers are shot. Women are decapitated. Shooting victims have gasoline poured on them and are set ablaze. The shooters urinate on their victims."

The author goes on to cite data from the PTC's secret shopper program and recaps all the negative moments the game industry faced in front of the Supreme Court. In the end McCall believes that this case is really about money and not about First Amendment rights.

You can read the entire thing here.

McCall is a professor of communication at DePauw University in Greencastle, and the author of the book "Viewer Discretion Advised: Taking Control of Mass Media Influences."


Comments

Re: Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

He's just old and out of touch... poor guy.

Must be tough sitting on your porch shaking your cane at things you don't understand nor partake in and being left behind by the world.

 

-------

Morality has always been in decline. As you get older, you notice it. When you were younger, you enjoyed it.

------- Morality has always been in decline. As you get older, you notice it. When you were younger, you enjoyed it.

Re: Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

"The games in question feature graphic portrayals of violence, carried out by the video game players. Police officers are shot. Women are decapitated. Shooting victims have gasoline poured on them and are set ablaze. The shooters urinate on their victims."

Yet strangely, no police officers are shot. No women are decapitated. No shooting victims have gasoline poured on them and are set ablaze. Shooters never urinate on their victims. Why? Because it's a GAME. No one gets hurt. There is no more violence in Grand Theft Auto than there is in a game of Dominoes.

Re: Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

This crap is just beyond retarded.  The First Amendment  is specifically FOR situations such as this.  "This is bad so it should be banned" is the very central pillar to censorship!  No one has ever wanted to ban something that they did not think was wrongbad.  So everyone who has ever wanted to censor anything believes exactly as this person does.  Which is why the First Amendment was put into place to begin with.

-Ultimately what will do in mankind is a person's fear of their own freedom-

Re: Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

the entertainment industry is trumpeting its First Amendment rights -- in this case to market violent video games to minors.

WRONG!!! The industry is trumpeting it's First Amendment rights to create games and works of art as they see fit. They are trumpting the right to use their creative voices without undue harassment.

Guys like this seem to forget, or simply don't realize, that in the brief history of video games up to this point, they have never been made exclusively for children. Look at all the sex games the Atari 2600 had. And even before that there was an arcade game that was controlled by fondling fake breasts.

As for the "marketing violent video games to minors" part. WRONG!!! Now I'll admit that I don't watch today's kids shows, or shows aimed at kids. But I'm pretty sure I'm not going to turn on an episode of Avatar: The Last Air Bender, Wolverine and the X-Men or whatever happens to be popular and see an ad for Call of Duty: Black Ops. And I'm damn sure I won't be seeing one for Postal!!

"But they show those ads during sporting events, like the World Series or the Super Bowl, and kids watch those so they are marketing towards minors". So, does that mean we're marketing male enhancement drugs and beer to minors as well? Cause I certainly see more than my fair share of those ads during those events.

Just like books, movies, music and TV, not every single game that is made is made for kids. And until an ad for Halo: Reach or Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood shows up during the latest episode of Yu Gi Oh, you need to stop with this whole "marketing violent games to minors" thing.

Re: Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

Protip: Airbender is one word.

-------------------- Making sure I retain my INSANITY

Re: Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

s far as I know Postal 2 was NEVER advertised except by word of mouth and at gaming events.

Re: Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

The shooters relevant to kids now? Black Ops and Halo: Reach. Trotting out the Postal games just doesn't cut it.

Re: Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

You can thank Leland Yee, PR wizard for that. He can pull out games from obscurity like no one by using them as cannon fodder for his retarded anti-games rethoric. It´s super effective!

------------------------------------------------------------ My DeviantArt Page (aka DeviantCensorship): http://www.darkknightstrikes.deviantart.com

Re: Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

Similar to how some people pull out Phantasmagoria as a relevant game, even though that was made in the mid-90's.

Re: Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

A professor of communication who does not see how the same arguments would seem ludicrous if he replaced "game" with "movie" and, instead, described any of a number of unrated DVDs that have been appearing on store shelves for years now?

This hypocrisy blows my mind. Thank Kratos I'm sitting down.

Re: Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

I love how people state their opinion is "common sense"...igorning that the idea is controversial in scientific circles...so as to imply that any difference of opinion must be illogical. 

Re: Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

Ah.. 'common sense'.. the code word for saying that you have absolutly nothing to back up your opinion but want people to take you seriously anyway...

Re: Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

This would NOT let adults buy the games at all. It would be a banning on them as well since no store would sell a game the government says is obscene. Just like how porn films are banned form just about all stores so they can keep a family friendly image.

Re: Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

By his logic nothing deserves free speech...  Just another anti-capitalism ranter. 

Pwnage of Empires Xbox 360 Indie RTS

Re: Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

Hold the phone there man, I'M Anti-Capitalism and I 100% disagree with this douchebag.

Better yet, how the hell is this Anti-Capitalism?

-------------------- Making sure I retain my INSANITY

Re: Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

 I don't really give a shit about what the industry wants.  I want my personal rights to choose what media I consume and create.  This is about having the government get their foot in the door and regulate content.  

I'm still amazed by this sort of logical fallacy: the idea that every time an entity has a monetary interest in something, that that thing must automatically be bad.  

These particular journalist then should have no problem with the government running the press.  After all, the news outlets have a vested economic interest in a free press to produce news content.  Because these media outlets benefit economically from free speech, then a free press is therefore bad.

Another thing I don't get from this journalist and others of their ilk is this idea that "the children" are somehow the principal money source.  $60 is a lot of money, and children sure as shit don't carry that kind of grit around to a point where they are keeping the industry solvent.  Its ADULTS who even have the kind of disposable income to do so.  If games were mostly $5-$20 affairs, then perhaps the industry is supported by kids.  

Re: Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

This is disgusting on so many levels.

------------------------------------------------------------ My DeviantArt Page (aka DeviantCensorship): http://www.darkknightstrikes.deviantart.com

Re: Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

I think I've heard of this guy.  One of the "old school" of thought like Anderson.  Ironic he takes the EMA to task for not paying attention to the research but he fails to note how often Anderson has been criticized by scholars of late, nor does McCall note the increasing body of research finding no link between games and youth violence.

Just embarassing to science...

Re: Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

trouble is, even if that were the case, and i probably is.

the laws would inhibit private citizens rights to make any sort of games of their own for any reason.

and given the popularity of politcal games atm among other types, this would basically say that these forms of expression should be deemed illegal, since they aren't expression of anything.

but isn't an expression of violence still an expression we all must face from time to time? be it verbal, physical, or virtual?

it'd also make silly little titles like "Gerbil in a Blender" from joe cartoon illegal under the terms of being animal cruelty.

to boot, it'd allow for an open hail storm against most other media types, especially in the movie industry, since their content is similar, and getting moreso as 3D FX gets better.

Re: Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

by his "logic", neither do movies, music, or television

岩「if Phyllis Schlafly wants to undo Women's Rights, she should lead by example and get back in the kitchen」

岩「…I can see why Hasselbeck's worried about fake guns killing fake people. afterall, she's a fake journalist on a fake news channel」

Re: Opinion: Games Don't Deserve Protection

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MechaTama31to be done, and some people really need jobs.07/11/2014 - 5:41pm
MechaTama31Info, I think you don't really understand just how crappy a lot of the jobs are that provide the "basics" that you assume will just continue to be produced under such a system. There's very little pride or prestige to be had from such jobs, but they need07/11/2014 - 5:40pm
Andrew EisenMaskedPixelante - That's probably because it's now available on the Wii U eShop for $8.07/11/2014 - 5:18pm
InfophileThat's not how human psychology works. It's all about "Keeping up with the Joneses." When everyone around you has a new fancy smartphone and is talking about that cool HBO series, do you want to be the one left out?07/11/2014 - 4:05pm
Matthew WilsonThe issue is most people would settle for the basics and not work. That is why we would need very heavy automation to make a system like that work. Almost all labor intensive tasks would have to be done by robot.07/11/2014 - 2:32pm
InfophileOf course, that's a gross oversimplification. The idea, have a basic safety net that pays for what's needed to live. If people can find a job and are willing to work, they get more money which can be spent on comfort and perks.07/11/2014 - 11:33am
InfophileIt's quite possible to get an economy to work with a basic minimum standard of living. You just need perks for the people who do work. Everyone gets food and a home. Everyone who works also gets an iPhone.07/11/2014 - 11:32am
MaskedPixelanteIn the continuing adventures of "Stuff I figured would be overpriced on eBay but isn't", 15 bucks for a copy of Mario and Luigi: Superstar Saga.07/11/2014 - 10:04am
SleakerI didn't gather the same conclusion.. Seems like they are focusing on devices & services still, just not calling it 'devices and services'07/11/2014 - 8:57am
PHX CorpMicrosoft CEO readies big shakeup, drops devices and services focus http://www.theverge.com/2014/7/10/5887143/satya-nadella-microsoft-ceo-employee-email07/11/2014 - 8:45am
MechaTama31declared that everybody should have them. Somebody still has to produce them.07/11/2014 - 7:44am
MechaTama31I do mean the developers/governmet. And money is not the only thing of value. I am including the food, housing, etc that everybody is supposed to get for free under this system. In the real world, those things don't exist merely because an authority has07/11/2014 - 7:43am
InfophileAs automation gets better and better, the number of jobs absolutely required keeps diminishing. How many people these days do you think are actually needed to keep everyone alive? Most people just make our lives more convenient and entertaining.07/11/2014 - 4:43am
Matthew Wilsonthat kind of system only works when most people (around 70 to 80 percent ) do not need to work.07/11/2014 - 1:21am
TechnogeekConjured up by who, though? If by the players, then it's not really "on a whim" since they're kind of putting work into it. If you mean the developers/government, then hello and welcome to monetary sovereignty.07/11/2014 - 12:34am
MechaTama31I'm just saying, when everything of value can be conjured up at a whim, that's not an economy. That's a fantasy.07/11/2014 - 12:15am
TechnogeekHonestly, though, what I find most thought-provoking about the article isn't the guaranteed minimum income aspect at all, but a more fundamental point: that we treat poverty as a moral failing on the individual, rather than a design flaw in the system.07/10/2014 - 11:53pm
TechnogeekOr, if your concern is that people won't even bother to work at all if their basic needs are met...well, let me put it this way: do you really want people like that in the workforce anyway?07/10/2014 - 11:51pm
TechnogeekAlso, you raise a valid question, but I'd argue that as things stand we're artificially limiting the amount of "gold/silver" that could be produced. The whole "work a job you hate to pay the bills" thing meshes poorly with the entreprenurial spirit.07/10/2014 - 11:49pm
TechnogeekSeriously, though, it looks at how in-game economies work and what lessons can be applied to reality, focusing primarily on multiple currency systems. Such systems do exist in real life (food stamps, for example), although generally aren't seen as such.07/10/2014 - 11:43pm
 

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