joshwent's forum posts

#1 Posted by joshwent (2172 posts) -

A private company can't just do whatever it wants. They are immune to law? If abortion is illegal in a country I can't just open up a "private" clinic. If it's against the law it's against the law, and in this case Australia may have a law that would force Valve to offer refunds.

Okay, not really at all what I was saying there. A company can't break the law, sure. I can't open Josh's Murder Co. and go around killing people because it's a "private" business.

I'm just saying that when governments make specific laws that dictate the policies of a privately owned company, it can cross some sketchy lines. A business should be free to create their return policies as they see fit, just as consumers are free to not shop there if they don't like said policies.

#2 Posted by joshwent (2172 posts) -

@sodapop7 said:

@splodge: Thanks for posting that. I've been looking for a reasonable perspective on all of this and you finally provided one.

Seconded. It's immensely refreshing to see a high profile person try and cut through the divisive nonsense to try and engender an actual discussion. I'm not familiar with TotalBiscuit at all really, but he concisely summed up my entire frustration with all of these issues in a very positive way.

I've felt shitty for days, feeling that the voice of reason (or at least a voice that could be heard above the screaming from all sides) regarding all of this stuff has been finally snuffed out. That essay helped a lot.

#3 Posted by joshwent (2172 posts) -

I'm increasingly saddened to see folks welcome government intervention and litigation in a private company's policies with open arms. But I understand. If you want something done, you're happy to have the biggest unimpeachable bully in the room on your side.

Just don't complain when that behemoth crushes something you didn't want it to. You created it.

#4 Edited by joshwent (2172 posts) -

@vincentavatar said:

We might as well be the ones making threats.

I'm glad to see that you're passionate about improving things for everyone, but this kind of sentiment is misplaced masochism that doesn't improve anything and at most make innocent folks aggravated. If a person on the street next to me is being attacked, and I do nothing, I'm to blame. If an anonymous person is digitally doing something terrible somewhere to someone else someplace, I can't stop that. It's simple, I just physically can't intervene. And accusing all of us as being part of the problem because of the reality of that situation only makes things worse. Especially with this kind of context:

Let’s throw our support behind the Cara Ellisons, Leigh Alexanders, and Anita Sarkeesians of the world.

You set up a false dichotomy here where if I don't fully support all women who do game related things, I hate those women and am trying to oppress them. It's precisely this kind of growing sentiment which has made things as heated as they are. I refuse to support Anita when she intentionally manipulates and misrepresents the content of games to try and prove her points. I refuse to support Leigh when her articles condemning hatred are brimming with divisive insults themselves. I will never, ever resort to personal insults at them for doing anything they want to do, but insisting that I might as well be someone calling rape threats to a person's home and saying that I'll murder their family if I disagree with a thing a person makes, is honestly pretty disgusting.

I don't mean to be overly blunt as you clearly mean well, but "speaking up" is an empty gesture. The people harassing others online know that it's wrong. That's why they do it. Internet jerks aren't going to see a bunch of blog posts from people no one knows and think, "Oh no! Maybe that death threat was hurtful. I certainly won't be doing that again.". More realistically, they'll never even see the blog posts in the first place. Patrick has 65,000 followers on twitter. And he is one of many well known public figures who spread the word whenever this kind of shitty thing happens. My condolences and finger-wagging are meaningless. And the victims are clearly not suffering in silence. This abuse is widely reported.

Blaming silence, blaming culture, blaming anything other than those who do it, is only serving to confuse these issues and enflame the situation. I've been thinking today a lot about things I've read in the past few weeks and the past few years, because these problems are not new, and it began to overwhelm me that no actual solutions are ever sought after. Patrick posts a link to the head of Twitter saying that they don't need any new tools to deal with harassment, and people comment on how terrible that is... and move on. We've cultivated an online culture where linking to something and "speaking up" about how it's bad is enough to satisfy people.

What if instead of all of the impotent articles condemning "gamerz" and "game culture" as somehow birthing these monsters, the powers of Kotaku and Polygon and Gamasutra combined to make some change in the real world. State and Federal police are technologically outdated and underfunded (infrastructure wise, not so much with weaponry as we've tragically seen) and are basically incapable of effectively pursuing and prosecuting online harassment. What if those sites petitioned their governments to rectify that situation. What if they showed how they're doing it, to make it easier for you to contact your local police and fight to have them better able to deal with online threats. What if they didn't stop until new laws were passed clearly outlining the steps that one can take to report this kind of violence.

What if they did anything at all to actually create positive change, rather than shaking their prose heads in disapproval, and then moving on to next week's harassment.

The sentiment behind "speaking up" is a good one, but unless you're actively working towards a tangible goal, you "might as well" be doing nothing.

#5 Edited by joshwent (2172 posts) -

what the hell is that from? Looks like a funny movie.

It's Gentlemen Broncos, the third film from the brothers that made Napoleon Dynamite. It's not fantastic and completely falls apart at the end, but it has a few very memorably funny moments, delves into some interesting places, and they really capture the real life nerd attitudes well (which I actually thought they failed at in Napoleon). If nothing else, it's absolutely worth it to see Sam Rockwell do this...

#6 Posted by joshwent (2172 posts) -

Somewhere, a few years ago, the gaming media's meaningful push for more diverse games skewed from blaming the very real "young white male" marketing focus of AAA games, and became pinned on those "young white males" themselves. It quickly changed from "There's a problem" to, "They're the problem". And that's been the theme of many of Alexander's and writers like her's essays ever since. They hollowly declare, "We have to be better!" which not so subtly translates to, "We already know we're better, so let's point out those jerks we can collectively agree are worthless so we can validate our superiority while we do nothing to actually change things for the better."

Fights were started, identities were cemented, lines were drawn, and thanks to it everything is more "toxic" from folks on all sides by the minute. Meanwhile, technological advances are making it infinitely easier for games that break the generic mold to be made.

We'll achieve the strived for diverse landscape of games, but not through media attacks and then attacks on those attacks. Not through ad-nauseum attacks on "gamer culture". It'll be people just... making those games.

#7 Posted by joshwent (2172 posts) -

It's easy when you follow some simple guidelines

#8 Posted by joshwent (2172 posts) -

You can get the PS4 camera (which, though not amazing, enables voice commands and 3D motion tracking) for $60. Hell, you can get a fucking 360 for $150.

If Microsoft has some ingenious plan to get everyone to hate them... well done?

#9 Posted by joshwent (2172 posts) -


#10 Edited by joshwent (2172 posts) -

Messing with Twitch is one thing, but now these assholes have fucked with Activision. I'd be surprised if legal action doesn't drop, hard.