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Thread: Newsweek: Conventional Stupidity

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    Default Newsweek: Conventional Stupidity

    I don't know if you've seen the latest Newsweek, but in this issue the article "Conventional Wisdom" (perhaps the most obnoxious and clearly biased feature in the magazine) attacks Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, claiming that it will teach "little Johnny to become a pimp or a thug". That's funny, because last I checked the game was clearly intended and RATED for adults.
    Anti-gamers whine for a ratings system that will protect children from controversial content. They get what they wanted, yet it DOESN'T STOP THE WHINING. When will these imbeciles learn that video games aren't just for kids? And when will the video game industry learn that it's smarter to defend their rights rather than sacrificing them in an attempt to appease parents' groups who refuse to be satisfied?

    JR

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    when these people die and we are the old generation.
    Fear your thoughts because they become your words
    Fear your words because they become your actions
    Fear your actions because they become your habits
    Fear your habits because they become your character
    Fear your character because it becomes your destiny

    Therefore: Thinking and nurturing positive thoughts, at any point in your life, can change your destiny.

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    aycarumba.

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    It's these kind of people who are making it harder to enjoy video games and for ne wpeople to get into playing and even collecting like us...
    My Gaming Collection (Now at Google Drive!)

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    Im going to steal a car and slam it into liebermans house then jump out and beat him to death with a baseball bat.

    then im going to shoot a fireball at his corpse and jump on his wifes head.


    <@Carey85> I-75 is the second busiest freeway in the country behind I-95
    <@NE146> u r

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    I had a subscription to Newsweek for a year, it seemed the best written stuff was on the letter page. Also, they always had articles about new rap and hip-hop albums, hardly anything about rock music.
    John

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    Default Re: Newsweek: Conventional Stupidity

    Quote Originally Posted by ManekiNeko
    attacks Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, claiming that it will teach "little Johnny to become a pimp or a thug". That's funny, because last I checked the game was clearly intended and RATED for adults.

    That's a good point IF the ratings were enforced (like VHS/DVD purchases). According to a Dateline investigation, 90% of the time stores sell "M"-rated games to underage kids. So kids are seeing adult-themes when they shouldn't.

    Rather than have a voluntary rating system that is not enforced, let's make the ratings mandatory. That way like cigarettes, alcohol, and movies, stores MUST obey the ratings on the cover or face government prosecution for selling to minors.

    I'd rather see this solution than see the M-rated games removed by censorship and negative publicity.
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    Feh...movies aren't enforced except at the theater. The only thing little Johnny pimp can't rent until they're 17 is porn. They can go in and rent R rated movies at most local video stores. Some t heaters have stopped bothering to check too.

    If parents don't regulate what their kids buy and play, then it's their own fault...not hte game makers. That's like saying "Cigarettes killed my husband and it's the tobacco makers' fault cause he smoked 3 packs a day and refused to try and quit." It was the husband's fault for not trying to quit when he KNEW the shit was toxic and dangerous. Similarly, if you don't like games like GTA3 (I don't personally) don't let your kids play em!!! If they go over to some friend's house and play it...YOU'RE the one who let them go. As parents, parents don't seem to realize that they're the ones that have the say in what kids get to do. The people behind these kind of complaints are morons.
    scooterb: "I once shot a man in Catan, just to watch him die."

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    Parents can't monitor their kids 100% of the time. When I was an underage teen, I got my hands on nudie videos... and my mom and dad had no clue. Same applies to games. This is where the law steps in to act as surrogate parents and ensure underage kids don't get their hands on porn videos, violent game, cigarettes, or alcohol while their parents are away at work.

    Surely you are not advocating repealing laws and selling beer and wine and smokes to 14/15/16-year-olds? I hope not, because these items don't belong in the hands of immature juveniles. Neither do porn vids or M-rated violent games.
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    And also, somethings are running about that in the game, you rape women and stuff. you dont RAPE women. My dad came up to me and asked me if i had the game where you pick up women off of the side of the road, and rape them. Where the hell did he get that idea??? of course i told him I didnt have it...(even though I did.)

    Also, my mom told me that she heard this guy talkin about this game where you rape women, and pick up prostotutes.
    Somebody once told me to get a life.

    I told them I sold it for money to buy video games.

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    Parents are as much to blame as the kids, IMO. I think a lot more parents are buying these games for their underage kids than kids going out and buying them themselves. Also, around here, Walmart enforces the age ratings on games/movies. So does our local movie theater. Both can and WILL ask for photo ID for proof of age.

    This is where the law steps in to act as surrogate parents and ensure underage kids don't get their hands on porn videos, violent game, cigarettes, or alcohol while their parents are away at work.
    I don't know about you, but as far as the videos, cigarettes, and alcohol go, those were things that were already in MY house when I was growing up that my parents owned themselves.

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    It's an ugly thing. On one side of the coin, it'd be nice if all stores checked IDs or didn't sell R rated movies, explicit CDs, and violent video games to kids. However in today's fast food society or Wal-Marts and other super stores, no one has time/money/patience to train the employees or make sure such policies are enforced. While a person is all for the restricted sales of such content, they'd probably be the first person in a packed check out line to holler at the clerk about speeding it up and GO GO GO and that the clerk doing their job was doing poor customer service because they took to long.

    However on the other side, how much do we want the government to step in? Gamingguy: no one is asking for existing laws on selling beer and such. Why you got this impression I have no idea. Violent video games fall under that same area as R rated movies, music with swear words/violent/sexual/provocative lyrics, and equal "R" rated novels. When the government gets involved with the control of one media, they can't stop there and they won't. They clamp down on the release of violent video games. Okay. Now they have to enforce the same restrictions on video sales to keep the video game industry happy. Then it moves onto the music scene. Then it goes onto the books we read. See where I'm going with this? It can't be just one thing, it WILL filter down to maintain a checks-and-balances system. Then there's the idea of the law parenting your children. It's flawed. Why? The children are not liable as adults for their actions. The child might get reprimanded, but the brunt of the punishment would fall to the adult responsible for the child. So we are back to square one-parents must actually be parents. Or the children are harvested for government programming and schooling, which would involve high tax dollars and be one of the biggest controversys ever.

    True, parents cannot monitor their kids 100% of the time. That's not what we are suggesting. To do so would socially cripple a child. However, the parents need to get more involved in the child's life. Find out what they do, what they like, etc. Be a part of the kid's life, don't just bring home the bacon. Instill proper values. While this won't prevent kids from playing violent video games or looking at nudie mags (hey if they aren't even REMOTELY interested in the naked body, they ain't human) they will have the values of what's right and wrong (ie not going out and raping somebody after seeing a porn or going on a killing spree) and what's fantasy and reality.

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    Yea I have that Newsweek. As soon as I saw that I just put it down and did not touch it again.

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    I have to disagree with your sensationalist "domino theory" of government tyrznny. Purchases of cars, alcohol, porn are all age restricted by the government. And yet, I can easily get my hands on any of these items with proof-of-adulthood. They have not been banned.

    There's no reason to believe age-restriction on Adult Games would be any different. The games would still be easily obtained by adults like you and me. Grand Theft Auto would still sell millions of copies... but now only mature adults would see the destructive images not easily-impressionable juvenile minds.

    I fully support the freedom to live your life and entertain yourself however you want. But only for adults. As Thomas Jefferson said, "Liberty is a privilege of the fully mature adult mind... not a plaything for children." Our children should have the freedom to buy violent/sexual games... AFTER they are fully mature adults. Not before.
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    Gamingguy: I ain't talking about letting kids have everything they want, I'm talking about NOT making the government take care of responsibilites the PEOPLE should be doing. We're also dealing with two different concepts. First, the "things where you need to be this tall to ride":

    Alcohol: it's a enebriating substance that adults over the age of 21 (in most states; the age the government hopes you are "mature" enough to know when to say when) can only purchase. Children/young adults generally don't have the sense of self control in the eyes of the government. It can be abused and can kill you if pushed too far. With this chance of abuse, government steps in. Cigarettes fall into the same category but are seen as even worse-it's been classified as a habitual drug by some.

    Cars: You can only drive after receiving your license when you are over 16 and have passed a test. You can get a license without a car, but the age limit suggests the teen should be smart and mature enough to handle a vehicle. However signing a title, registering a car, trying to lease/rent a car requires contract or contract like circumstances. You need to be an adult in order to sign for these things as these are LEGALLY BINDING documents. This same thing is seen on more mundane things like signing up for subscriptions or membership on web sites (usually having a "I'm X years old or younger" then asking for a parent or guardian's signature).

    Porn: For obvious reasons. Minors having sex is frowned upon and there's always the stat. rape thing floating about. While these may not be the reason government puts penalties on this, basically it's too much for children/young adults. They aren't mentally mature (again, in the government's mind) to handle seeing such sex acts. It really ain't art in the mainstream sense of it, it's basically video taped indecent exposure and lewd conduct (not that those things are bad... ).

    Okay now we have the "other" concept: media. This is where things get sticky and becomes a game of "where do we draw the line"? Video games pretty much fall under the same category as movies, music and such. They've been toted as art, expression, etc. just like said movies and music. It's a strange grey area that is open to so many different view points as to how much is too much when it comes to violence, sex, etc. Ratings are there to give people an idea who the movie or game is intended for.

    These mediums, expressions of thought (no matter how little plot something like GTA may have, it's really no different than watching a gory gangster movie, it's still an expression of thought) is something our founding fathers wanted to protect as such things were oppressed. To allow the government to take control of a civilian situation that we AS ADULTS should take care of, no matter how trivial it may sound, paves the way for our freedoms to be eroded away. I know its sound like I'm getting carried away with freedom of speech and all but once the ball starts rolling it will not stop and it will be our fault. It's happening now with censorship of music: words like "gun", "kill", any drug word (bleeping out "mushroom people" from System of a Down is just downright hilarious), "suicide" and probably other words I can't think of at the moment are being cut from videos we see on our favorite video channel. Just so that those words don't "influence" anyone. And it's our fault.

    Anyway, I've explained myself enough on this. Bottom line: it's up to the parent to raise the kid, not the government. If we need the government to step in and enforce something truely petty (in the scope of government concerns, it's damn petty), we have failed as an independent society. Check your individuality at the door and make sure your barcode doesn't get smudged when they tattoo it on you.

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    I agree with YoshiM. In Michigan, however, the legislature agrees with gamingguy. They are making sales of M and AO games to a minor a misdemeanor with a 90 day / $1000 penalty. Article at gamespot:

    http://gamespot.com/gamespot/stories...907789,00.html

    I suspect that the measure (if signed into law) will be overturned by the judiciary (either Michigan's or the US Supreme Ct.) on free speech grounds. The previous Indiana state court decision notwithstanding (i.e., "games are not speech") I think that if the issue is properly presented to a court, there should be no way that the judiciary will finally conclude that games contain no speech, or that the ideas in games are "too dangerous" to fall in the hands of minors. At least, I think that that would be the result if we are talking about violent games. Since the cultural norm in the U.S. is to be hung up about sex (sex is shameful and dirty, didn't you know? ), I think that the courts would be much more likely to go along with a ban on sales of sexually explicit games to minors.

    Since (as far as I can tell from the article) the Michigan legislature is going strictly with the ESRB rating system, which does not differentiate between violent and sexually explicit content (as far as I know), I think that a court would find that the measure sweeps too broadly, encompassing both truly horrific sexual content (bad! ban it!) and merely distasteful violent material (legal as all heck! ). I see the Michigan measure going down like a gut-shot chocobo.
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    Clarifying (because I don't think you guys are understanding):



    I consider a game involving hookers and rape equivalent to >>>pornography<<<... and therefore should not be purchased by minors. Whether that porn comes as VHS or PS2 makes no difference. It shouldn't be put in the hands of juveniles.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gamingguy
    Clarifying (because I don't think you guys are understanding):

    I consider a game involving hookers and rape equivalent to >>>pornography<<<... and therefore should not be purchased by minors. Whether that porn comes as VHS or PS2 makes no difference. It shouldn't be put in the hands of juveniles.
    I guess you mean a game that graphically depicts hookers and rape, right? Or rather, realistic depictions of your avatar raping hookers. And if you're talking about the ultra-realistic digital portrayal of sex acts, consensual or otherwise, well, I'm uneasy about my hypothetical kids playing a game involving that.

    I'm still not sure that I want the government regulating the industry with criminal sanctions, though, if the images shown are detectably not real. Should selling Custer's Revenge to a 15-year old be a criminal offense?

    Or would you even want text adventures involving rape and hookers made illegal? Is the following sentence pornographic? "bargora is raping a hooker." Or "Cheryl the hooker tells bargora that she was raped the previous week."

    As far as whether the status of ultra-realistic digitally generated images, I believe that the Supreme Court recently decided that purely digitally generated "child pornography" created without the use of real children is not "child pornography" under the law. But then, I suppose that doesn't answer whether it's "obscene". I could look up the case, I guess.

    We are of course free to disagree. (Bush v. Gore? )
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    Quote Originally Posted by bargora
    Should selling Custer's Revenge to a 15-year old be a criminal offense?
    IMO: Yes. If Custer's Revenge was a video, it would be classed as pornography and adult-only material. The game should be treated the same.

    I find it difficult to comprehend how some of you say, "Porn should not be sold to minors by law," but then say, "Pornographic games should have no restrictions."

    Can you guys explain that contradictory stance?

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    Alrighty, Gamingguy, I think you need clairification on pornography. Going with YOUR definition of "pornography": "I consider a game involving hookers and rape equivalent to >>>pornography<<<... and therefore should not be purchased by minors." Now then, you also state that should the game be a video [with above defined content] it would be a porno. Break it down further, it seems you "consider a [insert media form here] involving hookers and rape equivalent to >>>pornography<<<". So Pretty Woman is a porno? I know there are older Western style movies (like 80's) that had rape, are they pornos too? They don't show the actual penetration/lewd acts to bring arousal (as the definition of pornography states), but going by your definitions, these are pornos. Just because it's GOT hookers doesn't make it a porno. Rape is delicate as it is and I haven't seen this item in games since Custer's Revenge (as the object of the game) and Phantasmagoria (in a cut scene, showing how the demons possessed the heroine's husband, no player-controlled raping involved). If you see an unobstructed view of the act being done (not a car bumping about like GTA, the lights going out and your health rising in Golgo 13, not even the censored bar covering Larry doing the prostitute in Leisure Suit Larry 1) THEN it's porn.

    Bargora's right, we agree to disagree. While I probably didn't say it outright, I believe the kids SHOULD NOT get their hands on the violent/porn stuff. But the government should not get involved in the restrictions. This is the same mentality that brought on the "caution-contents are hot" and other related labels on coffee cups and whatnot.

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