Saturday, July 30, 2005

Video Games followup

As a followup to my column yesterday, here are two excellent pieces on the recent storm about video games, one by Steven Johnson (author of "Everything Bad Is Good For You"), the other from Daniel Koffler at Reason.

My e-mailbox is filling up with comments, too -- like this one from Kyle:

I wanted to thank you. I've been a supporter and involved in the video game industry for years and it was extremely refreshing to hear a voice of common sense in the mainstream media who seem to concentrate on doing sensational stories about how the industry is trying to breed a generation of violent killers (despite the fact that youth crime rates are the lowest they've been in years) and hearing from blowhard lawyers like Jack Thompson who seek to bring down the industry by throwing as many lawsuits as he can at it (don't be surprised if you eventually hear his name tied to this recent case). The rating system in place couldn't be more clear and it's unfair that the ESRB has to keep taking hits by parents who don't take the time to understand it and then seek to blame them for not doing their jobs.

A lot of people seem to think that the video game industry is a children's market when it's not; the largest demographic of gamers is getting older, the ones who grew up on the original Nintendo system. The video game industry isn't seeking to corrupt children, it's catering to the growing audience who are becoming more mature. Again, thanks for doing what you can to inject some common sense into a topic many people misunderstand.

Tom adds this observation:
If a kid knows 1) where to go on the internet to find a cheat, knows 2) how to download the cheat and then knows 3) how to execute the cheat...well, let's just say that he doesn't need a video game to supply porn for him. He's finding it juuuuuuus fine.