Rhode Island Senate Passes 38 Studios Settlement Bill

January 31, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

It should come as no shock that the Rhode Island Senate today unanimously approved legislation that encourages out-of-court settlements in the 38 Studios lawsuit. The news comes from a syndicated Associated Press report. The bill, which was floated to lawmakers by Governor Lincoln Chafee's office earlier this month and supported by the lead attorney representing the Rhode Island Economic Corp.

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EDC Attorney: We Have Had Settlement Talks in 38 Studios Lawsuit

January 15, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Max Wistow, the attorney representing the Rhode Island Commerce Corp. (formerly known as the Rhode Island Economic Development Corp.) said that he has had settlement talks in the case against 38 Studios. He says that the Rhode Island General Assembly should pass a new bill announced last week that encourages out-of-court resolutions.

"There's been enough discussion to make it clearly worthwhile to have the legislation passed," he said.

Wistow would not discuss who specifically he might have been talking to about a settlement.

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Rhode Island Lawmakers Propose Bill to Settle 38 Studios-Related Debt

January 9, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

On Wednesday legislation was introduced in the Rhode Island General Assembly that would resolve the the $75 million loan guarantee to 38 Studios and subsequent debt when the company defaulted on the loan and filed for bankruptcy in 2012. The proposal, which was submitted at the request of Governor Lincoln Chafee's administration, deals with Chapter 42-64-40 of the state's General Laws, which covers "court-approved settlements."

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Senator Coburn Targets Games Among Other Programs In His Wastebook 2013 Report

December 18, 2013 - E. Zachary Knight

Every year, Senator Tom Coburn of Oklahoma publishes a list of government programs which he feels wastes tax payer money and government resources called the Wastebook. While he tops the list of wasted tax payer money with a jab at Congress itself, it is when you get into the rest of the document that you find some rather interesting spending programs. In his opening statement to the report, Coburn writes:

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NSA Will Continue Bulk Spying Despite Lawmakers Efforts

December 12, 2013 - GamePolitics staff

An interesting report on Ars Technica reveals that the National Security Agency would continue bulk spying activities even if Congress passes a law forbidding them to do so. In fact, the agency would likely take the fight to court - though which court that would be remains uncertain.

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Report: ESA Spent $3.9 Million in 2013 Fighting Against State and Federal Anti-Videogame Legislation, Lobbying

December 11, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

According to a Wall Street Journal report (membership required), the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) spent a considerable amount of money and effort in fighting anti-videogame laws in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maryland, and New Jersey - and in Oklahoma last year. Many of the bills have either died or are locked in legislative committees waiting for approval.

The ESA is also taking aim at a federal bill, according to records and a co-sponsor of the bill.

EFF Applauds Passage of The Innovation Act in the House

December 5, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) issued a statement today praising the House of Representatives passing a bill to deal with patent trolling. The bill, the Innovation Act, was supported by a majority of House members, winning passage by a vote of 323-89. All that's left is for the Senate to take up the bill, which it plans to do before the end of the year.

While the EFF applauds the House's efforts, it also notes that the Innovation Act is by no means a perfect bill:

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ECA Action Alert: Say No to Massachusetts Video Game Research Bill

November 25, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

The Entertainment Consumers Association (ECA) has put out a special call for action specific to residents of Massachusetts, where a state senator has proposed that violent video games and video games in general should be studied by a panel (put together by the Senate) to determine if they cause real-world violence.

The bill is called S 168 and is the brainchild (we use the term loosely in this case) of State Senator William Brownsberger (D).

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Sen. Rockefeller Attempts to Amend Cybersecurity Bill to NDAA 2014

November 22, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

The chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee has attached his cybersecurity bill (S.1353) as an amendment to next year’s National Defense Authorization Act. If the amendment manages to survive the approval process Sen. Rockefeller’s Cybersecurity Act of 2013 may finally become law. S.1353, was unanimously approved by the Commerce Committee in July but has been stalled since then.

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State Senator Pushing for Independent Investigation into 38 Studios

November 15, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

State Senator Dawson Hodgson (R-North Kingstown) is putting forth legislation today to renew his push to create an independent commission to investigate Rhode Island's investment in 38 Studios, which ultimately left the state on the hook for $100 million after Curt Schilling's game studio went bankrupt in 2012. Hodgson promises to create a bipartisan coalition to bring the bill to a vote early in the 2014 General Assembly session.

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Massachusetts State Senator Proposes Study on Violent Video Games

November 14, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

A Massachusetts state senator is pushing legislation that would study video games and their possible link to violent crime. Sen. William Brownsberger (D-Belmont) has proposed legislation (S 168) to create a special commission to investigate the influence of violent video games and to find if there is a connection with real world violence.

"As a legislator, I don’t know the answer to this question," Brownsberger said during a hearing on the bill Wednesday before the Joint Committee on Economic Development and Emerging Technologies.

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Senator Wants to See an End to Patent Trolling Demand Letters

November 8, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO) convened a meeting of the Senate Commerce Committee this week, with the goal of ending the practice by patent trolls using demand letters to extort funds from individuals and companies, according to a lengthy report in Ars Technica. The meeting brings four key personalities in patent reform to Capitol Hill to pick their brains on how to go about accomplishing such a lofty goal.

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High Voltage Software Seeks Tax Incentives Amidst Illinois Legislature Pension Shortfall Fight

November 5, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Buried in a story about a number of companies seeking incentives from the Illinois state legislature being held up by a veto by Governor Pat Quinn over a lack of pension reform, High Voltage Software's name popped up. Apparently Fred Crespo, a Hoffman Estates (a northwestern suburb of Chicago) Democrat, is pushing incentives legislation for the company, which is headquartered in his district.

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EFF Warns: Sen. Feinstein's 'NSA Reform Bill' Codifies Agency's Spying Activities

November 1, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is warning the public that the "reform bill" being pushed by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA.) does nothing to curtail the questionable surveillance activities of the National Security Agency; in fact the watchdog group says that the new bill entrenches many of the practices the NSA is engaging in already.

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Sen. Jay Rockefeller Urges Caution in Implementing New FAA Rules on PEDs During Flights

October 31, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.), who serves as the chairman of the Senate committee that oversees transportation issues, released a statement today cautioning the use of iPads and other tablet devices on U.S. flights. Rockefeller warned that having access to the Internet and entertainment during flights could impact safety.

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FAA Lifts Ban on Portable Electronic Devices During Flights

October 31, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

The Federal Aviation Administration has decided that passengers can now use Portable Electronic Devices (PEDs) during all phases of flight. The agency recently reviewed the long-standing ban on the use of devices during take-off and landing, but found that there was no scientific evidence to back up claims that such devices interfered with aircraft electronics and communication systems.

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EFF Praises Congress for Taking Aim at Patent Trolls with the 'Innovation Act of 2013'

October 23, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

The Electronic Frontier Foundation issued a statement today praising Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) and other lawmakers that have backed a bipartisan effort to combat the nefarious practice of patent trolling. Rep. Goodlatte has introduced the Innovation Act of 2013 (PDF), a bill that puts limits on the ability to use patents to troll companies and the public. The bill is co-sponsored by Reps.

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NSA Head: We Need CISPA

October 9, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

The battle over the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) is far from over and lawmakers and leaders in the government's various security agencies are pushing hard to get legislation in the Senate passed. Earlier this year the House of Representatives passed CISPA with the hopes of the Senate putting together a bill of its own. At the time the Senate let that hot potato cool by saying that it had no plans to pursue such legislation.

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GOG.com Offers Furloughed Government Workers Free Games

October 9, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

GOG.com is offering its condolences to government workers affected by the current government shutdown and doing the only thing it can to lift spirits: host a sale. First, the site that offers DRM-free games says that it will give free games to anyone who is currently at home due to the government shutdown, which has temporarily furloughed federal employees at national parks and who work for non-essential services in the country as Republicans and Democrats feud over particulars of the budget and the looming debt ceiling crisis that could see the U.S.

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Republican Senator: CISPA-Like Senate Bill Close to Being Introduced

October 8, 2013 - James Fudge

Republican Senator Saxby Chambliss (Ga.), the top Republican on the Senate Intelligence Committee, said today that the Senate is "very close" to introducing legislation that would encourage the private sector to share information with federal agencies. A counterpart to the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) that passed the House in April of this year, the as-of-yet unnamed bill would also provide blanket immunity to corporations that share data so they wouldn't have to worry about getting sued by customers.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein Working on CISPA 'Companion' Bill

September 27, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

While the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) failed to win support from the US Senate earlier this year, not every Senator has given up on passing some sort of legislation related to cybersecurity. This week Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-California), chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, introduced a bill that is meant to "complement" CISPA and aims to encourage information-sharing between private companies and the government in the name of cybersecurity.

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Lawmakers, NSA Argue For and Against Spying Programs

September 27, 2013 - James Fudge

While lawmakers, feeling the heat from constituents back home (or deeply disturbed by reports on spying well before the public became outraged), consider reforms to U.S. surveillance programs operated by the National Security Agency, NSA Director Keith Alexander is asking the public for help in defending them.

The head of the top spying agency in the country urges citizens to remain stalwart in their support of the program, lest something bad happen to them on the scale of what happened in Kenya earlier this week.

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Report: Government Shutdown Would Not Stop NSA Spying Programs

September 26, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

No matter what side of the issue you are on, the looming government shutdown over raising the debt ceiling in Washington D.C. may shut down some important services but it will never stop the Nation Security Agency's (NSA) spying programs. At least that's what this report in The Hill notes. A government shutdown is imminent on Oct.

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Capitol Hill Focuses On Gun Control, Despite Media's Fascination With Violent Video Games

September 25, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Despite the national media's fascination with the Washington Navy Yard shooter's violent video gaming habits, lawmakers on Capitol Hill focused on the need to shore up rules on guns in the United States. Democratic lawmakers and anti-gun groups focused their efforts on the push for a vote on background checks legislation, according to Polticio. During that debate there's was very little talk about violent video games.

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South Australian Attorney General Wants to Scrutinize Ratings Classification Board

September 20, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

South Australia Attorney General John Rau recently told the Australian Broadcasting Network (ABC) that the country's new video game classification (R18+, which went into effect in January of this year) rules are not being applied properly to games and the ratings process needs further scrutiny from the country's policy makers.

4 comments | Read more

StopWatchingUs to Hold D.C. Rally Oct. 26

September 19, 2013 - James Fudge

On October 26 organizers of StopWatchingUs will hold a rally in Washington D.C. on the anniversary of the Patriot Act. StopWatchingUs is a nonpartisan coalition of organizations, individuals, and companies that oppose the unconstitutional mass surveillance being conducted by the National Security Agency. The collective seeks "a full Congressional investigation of America’s surveillance programs, reform to federal surveillance law, and accountability from public officials responsible for hiding this surveillance from lawmakers and the public."

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House GOP Takes Steps Towards Internet Sales Tax

September 16, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Despite opposition from fellow House members and a majority of constituents, some Republican lawmakers are pushing forward with Internet tax proposals as part of a comprehensive package on the topic similar to the Senate's Marketplace Fairness Act.

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Super Podcast Action Committee - Episode 69

September 16, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

On Episode 69 of the Super Podcast Action Committee, hosts Andrew Eisen and E. Zachary Knight talk about the "unique nature" of Valve Software's "family sharing program" for Steam, Fox News and Dr. Keith Ablow making a concerted effort on connecting video game violence with real-world violence, and a whole lot more. Download Episode 69 now: SuperPAC Episode 69 (1 hour, 1 minute) 28 MB.

Poll: 'Likely Voters' Do Not Like the Marketplace Fairness Act

September 13, 2013 - James Fudge

From the "we-could-have-told-you-that-without-a-poll department" comes this story from Politico about the public's opposition to Internet taxes. The polls - conducted for two separate conservative groups - found that most voters oppose federal Internet sales tax legislation and suggested that lawmakers who voted for it could face serious challenges in the 2014 mid-term elections.

4 comments | Read more

RI Lawmaker Wants Subpoena Power in EDC-38 Studios Deal Review

September 12, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Rhode Island State Representative Karen MacBeth (D-Cumberland) wants the House Oversight Committee to grant subpoena power to a group of lawmakers looking into the Economic Development Corporation's 2010 deal with 38 Studios. Rep. MacBeth says that she wants to extract documents and compel appearances by key figures in Rhode Island's investment in Curt Schilling's now-bankrupt game development studio.

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Which group is more ethically challenged?:

Shout box

You're not permitted to post shouts.
TechnogeekRegion locking bans seem like something that'll be very difficult to pass into law. I'm fully on board with the subtitle requirement, though.07/02/2015 - 10:00pm
MattsworknameFor example, all games with any for form of spoken dialoge should be i subtitled, and region locking in any form should be illegal07/02/2015 - 9:03pm
MattsworknameDoes anyone feel that there should be a set standard for all games in terms of certain basic features. Ie subtitles, region lock, etc07/02/2015 - 9:01pm
MattsworknameSo, now that the Article stuff is over, I want to bring up another subject07/02/2015 - 9:01pm
PHX Corphttps://trustygem.wordpress.com/2015/07/02/windows-10-insider-preview-phase-3/ My Thoughts on Windows 10 Insider Preview07/02/2015 - 6:17pm
Matthew Wilsonhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?t=18&v=CbGmrySQLIg looks like Inafune is giving capcom the middle finger.07/02/2015 - 5:05pm
TechnogeekUnfortunately, the shoutbox moves fast enough that I can't find why I got that impression, so if was indeed erroneous I do apologize.07/02/2015 - 4:34pm
TechnogeekBut yeah, as far as my earlier comment re: you and the article, I did get the impression at some point that you felt there should have been some sort of reprecussions for the article's existence.07/02/2015 - 4:34pm
TechnogeekI got expletive-censored for posting something a few weeks back wherein I expressed my shock that I agreed with you about something, Skunk; so you're not the only one being hit with that stick.07/02/2015 - 4:31pm
Andrew EisenI know you don't. And you haven't recently so all's well.07/02/2015 - 4:25pm
Goth_SkunkI don't think I misrepresented anything.07/02/2015 - 4:24pm
Andrew EisenHeavy profanity is not permitted in the Shout box. Words like "moron" are but we ask that our readers not resort to name-calling.07/02/2015 - 4:23pm
Goth_SkunkSo I can't say a 4-letter curse word, but Mechacrash is free to call me a moron. Acknowledgment: Mecha was warned about his conduct, but his post was not edited, as mine was.07/02/2015 - 4:20pm
Andrew EisenWhat people took issue with was your misrepresentation of what the author said. Now that you're criticizing what she actually said, no one has a problem (though they might disagree with your opinion).07/02/2015 - 4:19pm
Andrew EisenThat's not comparable at all. One is advice, one is a rule.07/02/2015 - 4:17pm
Goth_SkunkBut apparently, people seem to take issue with my justification and have been jumping down my throat about it for... 24 hours?07/02/2015 - 4:17pm
Goth_SkunkAnd now we've just had an example wherein I was forced to moderate myself in order to minimize offense.07/02/2015 - 4:16pm
Goth_SkunkThat's what this whole conundrum's been about! I strongly disapproved with the Wired article writer's suggestion and made that opinion known here in the shoutbox.07/02/2015 - 4:16pm
Andrew EisenPlease keep such strong language out of the Shout box. Anyway, that's fine. If there's something you want to write about. Go right ahead. Don't like someone's suggestion? Feel free to say so.07/02/2015 - 4:13pm
Goth_SkunkIf I get a response "this rape scene you wrote was offensive. You should've done it differently. Consider examples A, B, C, or D" I would happily take it under advisement should I decide to write something similar in the future.07/02/2015 - 4:12pm
 

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