Posts Tagged ‘United States’

After browsing GamePolitics.com today, I came across this Entertainment Consumers Association Alert regarding the new Video Game Research bill championed by Senator Rockefeller, another blind attempt to research the nonexistent connection between violent games and “harm to children” or “violence in children”….  This Bill is a direct threat to our freedoms. I urge anyone who is a gamer to send your Senator a message through the “action alert” link at the bottom of the article to talk to your senator to tell them NOT to support this bill. You can find the Article Here

 

However, the message ECA is sending does not give the Senators the complete picture. Noticeably missing are the fact that the “link” between Call of Duty and Sandy Hook is a media fabrication, and that groups like the Brown VS EMA Hijackers are probably going to try to sway the CDC or whoever is doing this research into believing utter hoaxes to prove their claims. IF this research is as biased and fraudulent as previous research (a topic I will do a youtube video on soon), then this research is in Danger of being completely fabricated. I urge gamers to use the below message instead. It goes into this problem and the fact the Call of Duty thing is a bogus media fraud.

 

“Senator Rockefeller has introduced S. 134, the “Violent Content Research Act of 2013.” It calls for a study by the National Academy of Sciences into the connection between video games and violence. We know the answer to that question, because studies have already concluded, including federally funded studies, there is no connection.

 

• While video game sales have increased globally, violent crime has decreased according to the FBI’s own statistics,

• Countries whose video game spending per capita is more than the United States do not see the level of violence – especially gun violence – that we do.

 

Those two facts alone show there’s no connection between the two.

 

Here are more reasons this legislation will achieve little:

 

• Researchers on both sides of the subject agree that you can’t study violence, only aggression. So there is no way to really come up with answers to the questions posed.

• The charge already has the taint of bias, as the Senator has said he personally believes that there is a connection. Now, no study connected to his worldview will be free of this.

• The CDC has had questionable practices in the past when it comes to studies and their conclusions. They have ignored their own data in past studies and have done so regarding past video game studies.

* No Matter how Questionable the practices of the CDC are there are always groups trying to sway studies and laws relating to Violence in video games. In 2006, during EMA vs Brown, a group from the Midwest (The Eagle Forum) sent in an Amicus Brief that cites known hoaxes such as “Doom Will Become Reality”, a phrase supposedly said on Eric Harris’s AOL Site, as proof Harris was influenced by Doom only. Only problem is that the site was a fake site according to the FBI. I have severe concerns that a study like this will be hijacked by such groups presenting  hoaxes as evidence to sway the CDC. It will tip the Balance forwards the CDC, Severely Biasing the Study.

• No matter the outcome, at least one side will not agree with the conclusions drawn by the study.

• HHS, the FTC and the FCC have been included in this legislation; they have no role in this study and will likely see this as a way to expand their authority, politicizing the issue even more.

• The recent shootings that have occurred have not been by children. More recent such incidents have been gentlemen in their 60s or older.

• An investigation showed there is little evidence recent shooters played video games, and that the claim that they were was a fabrication by the media, especially the sandy hook reports linking Adam Lanza

to the Game “Call of Duty”. All of these reports are based on a Tabloid article that did NOT prove that Adam lanza Played Csll of duty, just said his families plumber thought he might have. The Media all cited this non-proof as proof that he did play call of duty, all at once, making up many ideas, that he lived in a basement, that he trained on the game, etc.  The Media is known for making up such claims and many fraudulent statements from them about violence in video games go unchecked… The “Doom Will become Reality” hoax listed above was used by the media to demean Doom and similar Games after Columbine.

• This legislation squarely focuses on video games, not including other media children are exposed to.

• There are numerous positive outcomes created by video game play, all of which are ignored by Congress.

• This legislation was proposed without talking to leading experts in the field.

• The legislation ignores past studies, which show that there is no causation between video games and violence, as well as reports by the FBI and the Secret Service that conclude the same thing.

• Congress is ignoring the studies have already been done. Why are we to believe that any conclusion other than what Senator Rockefeller wants will end this subject once and for all?

 

This study is a waste of taxpayer dollars and will not solve the issue of mass shootings in our country. It is a distraction from finding out the real causes and solutions.

 

It is within your power to guide this conversation responsibly and not simply blame entertainment. I ask that you represent me, your constituent, by doing so.  If you have any questions on this or other similar issues please contact Jennifer Mercurio, the Entertainment Consumers Association’s Vice President and General Counsel, at jenn@theeca.com.

 

Thank you for your time and consideration.”

 

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Checking Gamepolitics today I learned the truth about Obama’s Violent game’s conference between the ECA and the Senators, hosted by Joe Biden. According to the ECA, the whole thing didn’t go down well and the senators still blindly believe “Video games cause violence”. I quote:

Senators are convinced that there’s a connection between video games and violence. One has even said that a proposed study is simply “laying the groundwork for new regulations on video games.” We know that’s not true – so write to them today.

Yes, even when presented with the facts that violent crimes have decreased since 1980, while video game sales have increased, and that other nations that consume more video games than the United States don’t see the same level of violence, those we talked to pressed forward with the need to legislate video games and waste money to find a connection between games and violence we know doesn’t exist. These Senators believe that playing games leads to real world violence. They have even gone so far to say in private discussions they disagree with the Supreme Court’s decision that video games are free speech.

We’re not going to take these insults and lies. Video games don’t lead to violence and are protected free speech. That’s reality. We need gamers to speak up and tell Congress this.Write to your elected officials and then spread this action everywhere you can.

This year is going to be a rough one. No matter how many facts we present, folks seem to want to stick to their fantasy that we gamers are time bombs waiting to go off. It’s insulting to me, it’s insulting to you, it’s insulting to us and just not true. Take action now.

Keep on gaming,”

 

 

This is, Frankly Disgusting… Number 1) None of these senators even care that people don’t want video games regulated,  As gamers we have to stop this mess NOW. We can do it. We need to mail our Rep’s and Our Senators, but their message refuses to show the real issues, the media fabrications, the nonsense, the real reason behind school shootings.  The Representatives will assume the default message is  just Industry Rhetoric. Why would they listen to it? You must send them a much more detailed message like the one I have put below. One that shows the scapegoating by the media and how violent games have nothing to do with real crime. This is really important.  My message is a lot longer than theirs but covers a lot of stuff that very few people know about but is all true and people simply are not talking about it. If people want to use this message, go ahead. Edit it and choose the parts you agree or disagree with if you want, but make sure to tell them that A) Violent media studies never have proven violent crime is a result,  and that B) Special interest groups in the CDC Study will try to hijack it with hoaxes, for extremist groups did that before at the Supreme Court, quoting the “Doom will Become Reality Hoax”, which was actually not on Harris’s real site but a fake site made after Columbine.

This is really important. This could be like the columbine moral panic on “Doom” times 5 if you don’t act… Seriously.

Title : “Regulating Violent games solves nothing!”

“As your Constituent, I would like you to know that I am not happy about all the scapegoating happening surrounding violent games by the Government, and if you don’t know this already, the scapegoating has been going on for over 10 years (since Paducah!), and it continues without anything to legally stop it.

Most comes from the media who are fueled by right wing extremist groups who are pro censorship such as the The Eagle Forum, the Parents Television Councel and others. For years they have been sending people on to talk shows especially right after school shootings, to make up utter lies about violent games such as the “fact” violent games make kids violent, the “fact” violent games break down the inhibition to kill, and the “fact” that violent games are military training tools. None of these are true.

The truth is that, video games don’t make anyone violent, no study has ever been done even linking video games to violence, the aggression studies have been misquoted by people with anti-video game agendas on talk shows as proof they cause violence, without proving which studies they are talking about. One was a guy who was trying to sell a book. The other guy is a Defense Attorney for Murderers who gets them all to say “Video games made me do it” and is trying to get people to believe it, so he can win as much cases as possible. In fact no study has ever linked video games to Violence at all. Why do we need a study to link them now?

The Link between Adam Lanza and the Video game “Call of Duty” was based on 1 UK Tabloid basically saying “This kid lived in the basement (a video gamer stereotype), and had a computer. He had posters of lots of tanks and old fashioned Military Weapons. Since Call of Duty Players can name a lot of old fashioned weapons, he must be a Call of Duty Fan!”.  This all came from a “plumber” who visited the house. This article doesn’t prove he played call of duty, but then 25 newspapers all Quoted this plumbers words as proof he was obsessed with Call of Duty and some even said Call of Duty made him commit the Massacre. See the nonsense the Media Spreads? Millions of people now believe, that Call of Duty caused Sandy Hook. But it’s not true.

The same thing Happened after Columbine. Some unknown party made a fake Eric Harris Aol Site with a page that said “The fires will go off in the 21’st, Eric harris Hates you all, Doom will become reality!”.  This spread around to people and then the media quoted the “Doom will Become Reality” part and immediately everyone thought Doom Triggered the Massacre. Only Problem is that Harris never wrote these words, the site was made on April 21’st. It was proven by he FBI. But no one listened. One News article verifying that it was a fake Aol Site was taken down to cover it up by someone…. The media makes up bogus claims right and left about violent games. FOX News hired a fake hack psychologist to say “Bulletstorm causes rape because Rape is a violent crime, and since Bulletstorm is a violent game, it has caused rape!”. Millions Believed this.  A preacher recently said at a public function of some sort, that “Pornography releases Endorphins, it’s like a cocaine High, the more you view pornography the more you need that high, till Heterosexual Porn doesn’t satisfy you anymore, you then jump to Homosexual Porn, then to Bestiality or then to Pedophilia. Look at all the Rapists and Child Molesters who said they were addicted to Porn. These Violent Video games are the same way”. He basically said it in a way to make some people think Violent games lead to child molestation.   In the Columbine case, the Hoaxed page was used as evidence in the Supreme court case EMA Vs Brown. It was submitted by a Right wing pro-family Group who is anti-violent games. I fear some similar group will use this or other bogus claims (imagine if they use the Child Molestation one…..), in the upcoming CDC study as evidence… This must not happen. It’s not true and things like this could lead to Regulation when no evidence of a problem exists…

Legislating violent games will not cause Tragic School Shootings to stop. Doom didn’t have anything to even do with Columbine. The CHS Massacre was a revenge crime against the police in Colorado, and according to a freedom of information act request for documents the FBI was keeping secret,

Eric Harris was Raped by the Police in an arrest in 1998. This triggered the revenge crime, Not Doom.

We still don’t know why Adam Lanza killed 26 people. Why jump to conclusions till a real investigation gets done?

Thank you for your time and consideration.”

Back on gamepolitics.com, there was a poll that asked how much gaming legislation impacts voting choices, and many ignorant fools kept saying that it didn’t… But it does…. One of our candidates, wants violent games banned, and he is still in the race, and it’s preposterous to assume that if people vote for him, that the gaming industry will survive, for his comments, in 2008 proved that he wanted “something to be done about retailers who sell violent games”…I am obviously talking about Mitt Romney. According to this site, his words in the 2008 election were quite proving if his motivations. I quote :

“I want to restore values so children are protected from a societal cesspool of filth, pornography, violence, sex, and perversion.”  “I’ve proposed that we enforce our obscenity laws again and that we get serious against those retailers that sell adult video games that are filled with violence and that we go after those retailers.”

Notice not once did he say that he would “go after” retailers who sell them to kids, just sell them, PERIOD…  If you think that the gaming industry would survive after this, you are crazy. He is clearly talking about Shutting down ALL retailers of any game with violence included, 99% of violent games today… It’s obscene to think that in America, that politicians can get away with such freedom tarnishing regulations.  It shouldn’t even be allowed in this country, anything that could allow for an effective ban of violent games to all age groups. It’s what the morons who attack games want. Romney’s speech proves it!.  Nevermind all his BS on the cesspool of filth and how he claimed Harris/Klebold “drank from this cesspool” when in fact it was proven through a freedom of information act request that a police rape incident in Jan 1998 triggered the school shooting as a revenge crime… (Look it up)..

If he is seriously planning on making it illegal to simply sell any game with violent content, how far will he  go is the real question. How would Amazon.com and other places be affected? I know that I plan to get several FPS games this Holiday season and into my birthday, next march. This kind of dark ages, knee jerk, save the children bullshit regulation is uncalled for.  This country should be ABOVE complete bans of violent entertainment, to EVERYONE. Every other country is for this crap. We are supposed to be civilized to know that my  freedom as an adult to buy violent games MATTERS…

That’s why I say, that voting for Romney, is voting for the death of the gaming industry, porn, etc…. He WILL try to legislate morality and there WILL be no gaming industry left when NO stores are legally allowed to carry any game with violent content in them..  Back in Brown VS EMA the Supreme court struck down a law trying to do just this. Don’t be fooled by the claim that the CA law would have fined retailers who sell violent games  to kids. The law used Obscenity clause language to determine how the board of censorship in CA would judge a game. If the game is offensive to  them they would claim that it lacks “scientific, literary, and educational value” and they then would fine any store that carries it. Stores, not knowing just WHAT games would be effected would pull ANY game that COULD be fined, effectively banning violent games without a strict law saying that this should happen… DONT VOTE FOR ROMNEY!

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EFF_logo_notype_black (Photo credit: ElectronicFrontierFoundation)

If you thought SOPA and ACTA were the end of Copyright fraud BS legislation you are wrong… Enter TPP, the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement. This is like SOPA X10. The treaty is secretly being discussed among certain countries, including US and Canada. No one knows the entire text of it. It’s being done in secret. But a leak revealed that BS copyright infringement Censorship is part of it.  Not only does it demand that ISPS shut down any site that “allegedly” infringes,  it requires “internet incendiaries” (without even saying what these are) to shut down anyone’s access if they repeatedly commit alleged copyright infringement.  It also requires the internet to be filtered for any “alleged” copyright infringement, therefore possibly censoring the following material, which all could be seen as copyright infringing:

-Actual Copyright infringement themed sites, aka Warez, etc. Shut down. But they deserve it so moving on.

-Any site that could allow people to post infringing material, facebook, youtube, blogs, etc. Youtube, facebook, Blogs

-Any and all video game modding sites.

-Any and all file hosting sites, 4shared, the late megaupload, dropbox, filefront, any of the video gaming related file upload sites such as 3dgamers archive, atomic gamer, etc,  any of them! ALL SHUT DOWN. No more gaming files online, ANYWHERE, for people in any of these countries.

-Any Site that posts music, such as soundcloud, reverbnation, youtube, etc. Already soundcloud made the do not advertise on list of a big advertising site, for being a “piracy” related site, so did every single file hosting site I mentioned here and many more, INCLUDING Several gaming related ones.

-Any site that post lets plays of video games. The right to display a game is a copyright issue. Many lets plays get taken down by alleged copyright infringement claims on youtube. Some are fraudulent but some probably are not. I absolutely love lets plays and if this bill gets passed then lets plays WILL be targeted next.

-Any site that allows “legal” mp3 downloads, Itunes, Amazon Mp3. Don’t tell me the copyright moguls won’t use this to shut them down too. I am calling it. Amazon SHUT down due to this. The entire site would go, not JUST the mp3 portion. No more amazon.

What is left not on this list. Just news sites. Really. That’s it.

But that’s just the tip of this pathetic shit covered iceberg of a law..

Besides having to filter “possible” or “alleged” infringing sites, the ISPS also have to block them and copyright holders also have to be told about any site that is allegedly infringing on their copyright. Already dozens of idiots on youtube are abusing the ContentID system to claim they own copyright on anything they want, without proof. Imagine how much that will increase after this. Pretty much any site online could be taken down for ANY reason just for an ALLEGATION of an infringement by someone who Might not even OWN the copyright!  I highly suggest that anyone who is into any of the above to visit EFF and click the take action button so that your REP’s and Senators know about this… I already have… The copyright moguls have already successfully shut down megaupload (Without SOPA) and the Files I UPLOADED THERE for my modding blog, something I am VERY Pissed off about. I had LEGAL, Non Infringing files uploaded to megaupload because it was the only site that would host bigger files. He decided my files needed to be shut down. None of my files were infringing. All they were video game mods. I lost them all due to this BS. Imagine of ALL the gaming archives get shut down due to “infringement”. EVERY SINGLE GAMING related file would be deleted. ALL of them. No more patches. No more mods. No more skins, no more editing tools. Thousands of addon maps ALL GONE, nevermind all the mp3 download sites, music sharing sites, file upload sites such as 4shared, all the lets plays. THIS is the future that is coming if people don’t stand up to this. This could potentially Destroy 99% of what is cool about the net. Seriously. All of the following sites would be removed if this is not seriously attacked like SOPA was. People talking to their REPS should be really important if you like any of these sites:

Amazon
Youtube
Facebook
Moddb
Itunes
3dgamers archive
ANY and All of the following gaming sites:
Seriously
Duke4ever
Doomworld
TESNexus
Doom3world
Fallout3nexus
Planethalflife
Func-Messgboard (look it up)
Quaddicted
Unrealsp.org
Beyondunreal.com
Payne Reactor
Planet Deus Ex
The Admirals Command Chamber
Tenfourmaps.telefragged.com
Underworldfans quake review site
Darkplaces
Zdoom.org
Gzdoom website
D2x-xl
Kmquake2
Prboomplus
Doom Legacy
DarkXL
DukePlus
Eduke32 website
Reverbnation
Purevolume
Soundcloud
4Shared
Myspace Music
Myspace
4Shared
Dropbox
FileFront/Gamefront
Atomic Gamer
Rapidshare
4Filehosting.com
Completegamer.net
Mediafire.com
Sendspace.com
Vimeo.com
Zippyshare.com
Blogspot
Wordpress

The treaty is being negotiated by the Executive branches of the countries without the Congress getting involved. It’s really important that fans of any of the sites listed above Contact their REPS about this.  This is a SERIOUS breach of due process, civil rights and internet freedom. The more I see the copyright moguls do this the more I want to puke as I see America turn into a Communist state.

Now to change the subject for a second, to anyone who is anti-censorship,   my previous posts (this one,  this one, and this one) on the 1999 Anti-Doom Article BS goes into How the media lies  get propagated to the extreme to fuel censorship. In particular one News Article after Columbine dared to claim Harris made a doom mod that allowed him and another shooter to practice in, all with features Doom Could not do then. I am bringing this up because even though I wrote the articles 2 months ago, they still have yet to get really noticed. I highly suggest you read them as well.

 

The Erosion of Freedom has been down due to lack of any real anti-gaming nonsense being spread around via Gamepolitics. But over the last few weeks a new threat has popped up, far exceeding any anti-gaming legislation that has been considered in the US Congress of recent note: SOPA.

This bill, allows copyright holders to A) Shut down any site that fits the below categories, B) Shut down support from Paypal to the site, and C) arrest anyone associated with the site if the site…. COULD be used to infringe on copyright. It’s cleverly worded because most of the time It tries to mask copyright infringement as “Theft of US Property”.  A blog talking about the language of the bill (here) basically goes into detail into why this bill is so bad. First it tries to start with language that suggests that the bill will only target “foreign infringing sites” (any site outside the US that infringes on copyright). That’s bad enough but if you only read that part you’d assume that US sites are unaffected. Not so.

The next part is where it gets REALLY controversial. Any site or “Part” of a site (even if US Based), if used by users for “primarily” for copyright infringement (worded as “theft of us property” or even “counterfeit goods”) or “enables” copyright infringement, according to the attorney general, the copyright holders can have the site shut down, it’s funding revoked via PayPal, etc, And Internet Service Providers, MUST do everything in their power to get the site shut down, funding removed via PayPal, etc. Then the DNS service that gives your browser the IP address of any site you type in the address bar must remove the site from it’s records, therefore blocking all access to the site to any ISP.   Even worse, if any site is found to be not conforming to a high standard of non-copyright infringement, it too can get the same treatment! Even if this is not found to be deliberate “non-conforming to the high standard”, it is still in violation of this bill. So any site that accidentally allows possible or recorded copyrighted material be posted on it is to be shut down. That is about 99% of the internet that fits into that category.

But that’s not the worst part…. No no no. The bill also states that no copyright holders will be held liable for purposely targeting sites that Don’t infringe on their copyrights, allowing them to target crap they hate (youtube, megaupload, rapidshare, blogs, facebook, amazon Mp3 downloads, game “modding” sites, etc). The Whole site would be shut down if part of it was even ACCUSED of copyright infringement. Keep that in mind.

The real problems are two fold Problem 1 is that any site that hosts user content (social networking, blog hosts, youtube, reddit, cracked.com, etc) “enables” copyright infringement, because it’s very possible to post copyrighted things on these places. The entire site would be shut down once some copyright holder complains. Now the bill provides for no system to back up the complaint so that innocent parties accused of copyright infringement can fight the accusation when their site did not violate copyrights, so there is in all intents and purposes, no due process for this bill.  But even worse, the real issue is that this bill seems to be designed to allow copyright holders to shut down any site they think could be used for copyright infringement, even if the complaint about the site is false. Copyright holders over the years have shown time and time again, that they are willing to take down youtube video’s, and more, with fake DMCA requests, when the video doesn’t even violate their copyright in the first place. Yes, taking down sites/video’s is happening now, sites that do not infringe at all. UMG (universal Music Group) has been taking down video’s that post songs that they don’t even hold the copyright for! It’s been happening on youtube for at least a year.

I mentioned the list of types of sites I thought would be affected. Here’s why I think they would be. Youtube has dozens of user uploaded video’s posting illegal copyrighted music on it. It’s illegal to post this stuff, youtube doesn’t take it down. But there are MILLIONS of video’s on youtube, and most do not infringe copyright. Then you have a part of the bill that penalizes “streaming” of copyright material, such as posting video’s of someone playing video games as video walkthroughs, on youtube. The bill says that anyone found guilty of streaming such copyrighted material is fined and jailed for 5 years, at the most.  Any person posting video’s of any video game, reviews of any video game that even mention copyrighted material of the game (character’s names, etc),  any band’s live performance, legal or not, (even the band themselves, on youtube’s site for that band), their kids singing along to a song being played on the radio, or even performing the song, even without it’s music in the background, would be arrested and jailed for 5 years.

But the sites that could be shut down aren’t limited to youtube, facebook, and other social network sites. Blog hosts could be shut down. How many blogs out there have not posted one copyrighted thing on them? Very few. At least 1 per host, probably hundreds to thousands. And remember that if the host “enables” copyright infringement, it’s gone.  So any host that even allows such content to be posted (that’s all blogging hosts, wordpress, Blogger, all!), would be affected. You’d get shutdowns of many known services quickly if this bill was enacted into law.  Amazon would be targeted, for it’s wonderful Amazon MP3 Downloads. Under the bill’s vague description, Amazon would be found to be hosting copyrighted material, even though they legally distribute the digital forms of these songs to people who pay for the digital version of the albums.  Then Amazon would possibly be shut down, or at least amazon MP3 would be gone. Any site that allows up and coming to host or market their music, online such as soundcloud, reverbnation, lastfm, etc could get targeted. Copyright holders would not stop at things that are copyrighted by them. They don’t need to. UMG is already doing this on youtube. Why stop at youtube? They want the authority over anything like youtube! Any of the sites listed above could be gone.  Then next would come facebook. Poeple post pictures that could be copyrighted all the time on facebook. Screenshots of video games, pictures of comic books, photo’s, artwork, some picture of the front cover of any DVD (my friend gets these posted to facebook all the time when he buys them), would get facebook shutdown. Then Myspace, for similar reasons.

But even worse, IMHO, is the impact this would have on the Gaming Community, especially modding sites. Any mod that includes any piece of the game’s copyrighted material, that is hosted on any site that is dedicated to modding, would get the site shut down. This would affect 100% of the modding sites. Because every game has at least one mod that distributes original copyrighted material for that game in it. Every time we modders made a modified version of an enemy/character  in a game, we have to include the new skin, for  the model for that enemy. Most of the new skins are modified versions of original game ones. Since copyright applies to any thing based on the original assets, any mod being hosted on any modding site that this applies to would get the site shut down.  That would affect most Every modding site out there. There would not be a game that’s primary modding site would not get shut down for this. 99% of doom mods feature enemies that use modified original graphics. Many mods import other game’s characters into their mod, so that the copyright holders of other games would get involved too, especially EA, who supports SOPA.  Even worse, if you include something that looks inspired by something in another game, without copying the original asset, you would be held liable because idea’s are also copyrighted. Once someone makes an enemy for a mod for some video game that is a clone of another enemy from another video game, the site would be shut down. And this would also apply to websites of commercial games that do the same thing. Enemies that look totally unique are a rare thing now. Serious sam 3 had an enemy that looked like a bland rip off of another enemy from Doom 3. Don’t expect copyright holders to not attack such rip offs. Entire games could get banned, nevermind mods. But the modding community is far from the worst facet of the gaming community to be affected. Any time someone mentions content from a video game, or posts screenshots from anything done in that game (even mods for that game), copyright holders will get involved. You post a screenshot of your best score, and then the site you posted on could get shut down. It really is a scary thought how broad this bill is.

Then comes the takedown of lets plays. Every time you do a lets play you are posting copyrighted material. Most Developers, turn a blind eye to this. But some won’t after SOPA.  If the hundreds of copyrighted songs on youtube doesn’t get it shut down, this will.  Even if youtube doesn’t shut down, lets plays will probably be deleted to lessen liability like I mentioned above.  Millions of guys do lets plays on youtube. Its a great source of humor, and entertainment. And it actually gets some games noticed.  But the copyright holders will definitely target this, if SOPA is enacted into law.

Now you might be saying that big sites like facebook, myspace, youtube, would fight this. You’re right. But in the process they would remove any content to lessen the liability on them. That means any user content that could be copyrighted would be removed, By them. Think of the effect this would have… Sites that would not be shut down would remove the content anyway, so the content, would be gone, even if it isn’t infringing. This makes it obvious that this bill was designed to censor things anything the copyright holders don’t like. This bill is not about piracy. In fact most pirates would not be even affected by this bill. Real piracy is done on foreign “warez” sites that upload copyrighted illegal (and very often virus infested) copies of video games, software, etc, in 100’s of parts to sites such as megaupload, rapidshare, etc. To truly stop internet piracy, you have to target the source, the referrers’ of these links to such download sites, the warez sites themselves. This cannot be done by a US law, for most are foreign.  To find such sites, all someone has to do is type words associated with pirated material into a search engine, such as warez, or gamez. Very few real hardcore piracy happens on  most of the sites that could be affected by this bill. So no, this bill is not trying to fight piracy. In fact IMHO it was crafted over obvious paranoia over piracy.  How else do you explain a bill that makes it possible to shut down sites that could host pirated material… It’s either that or it was purposely designed to censor things that the copyright holders don’t like.

This is a great chance to mention that people CAN do something about this. Call your representative and tell them you think this bill is bad for the reasons I mentioned above. There is a site, americancensorship, that has a link to do this and a link to allow people to call their congressman. I suggest people do this now before 99% of the good part of the internet could be gone.

The "sigil of Lucifer", used by mode...

Image via Wikipedia

You had the moral panic in the 50’s surrounding “graphic” comic books and how they cause delinquency in kids. Caused by a German Psychologist mentioning nonsense such as “bondage” in Wonder Women Comics, and how Batman and Robin were “Gay Lovers”. The readers effected by the Comic Books, supposedly, were kids.

Now we jump 20 years later to  the Dungeons and Dragons moral Panic. The main claim in this moral panic is that kids were being possessed by Devils. Why? The nature of the table top RPG, made it so that the players would “role-play” as fictitious characters, making it so when their character did something, they would often say “I am” doing the action. Extremist religious groups took that as a sign that Satan was possessing them.  You got dozens of groups attacking DND for supposed satanic ritual content, and demonic summoning allegations came soon after. Who was the “victim” in the Panic. Kids… Again.

Fast forward to the Metal Moral Panic of the 80’s. Subliminal messages were corrupting the kids. To make them drink, do drugs, have sex, worship satan, rape babies, sodomize Nuns, want to marry sheep, and worse!  Of course all of that is BS. There is no such thing as a backwards or subliminal message that actually does what the proponents of subliminal or backwards messages claim. It’s impossible for you to make out 1 frame out of many 60 frames per second animations to see the “hidden” sex scene. If you can’t see it, neither can your subconscious. With backwards messages, the claim is that your mind reads things backwards so you can understand the messages, deep down inside…. But that doesn’t make sense either….  But who were the targets of these damn hidden satanic subliminal messages in all the rock and Metal Records…. Kids… Again…

Then the damn evangelists in El Paso kept telling the police that satanic cultists who were either Mexican American or Metal-heads were secretly molesting kids, and “Eating Babies”.  No proof found… Yet another moral panic… The Victim… Kids. Babies. Metal-heads are eating our babies. Oh Joy!

Now you have the 15 year old set of 5 moral panics surrounding violent games.

A)  They make kids violent. Enforced by dozens of “studies” that the media keeps on claiming prove this violence, but they are flawed and only prove aggression. The victim… Kids.

B) They train kids by either breaking down the inhibition to kill, or make kids a better shooter in real life. The target… Kids.

C) They are being marketed to kids due to all the “ads” they see everywhere… The target of all these ads…  Kids.

D) Video game console makers use a mineral called “coltan” from the Congo to make their PS2/Xbox/etc. It’s mined using child labor. The victim – Kids.

E)  Violent games are used as a recruitment tool for the US military. To recruit… Kids.

Notice a pattern? In all these moral Panics kids are the purported victim.  Comic books make kids delinquent. DND makes them possessed. Metal makes them Satanists. Video games make them violent. These are all the major moral panics of the 20’th century. Bigger ones from the 1700’s like the Salem Witch Trials don’t count because they were before the 20’th century. In 3 of these moral Panics (Comic Books, Metal, Violent Games), the government cracked down on the entertainment in question, regulating and censoring it, just to “save the children”. To me, to start a massive moral panic, you need kids as the victim. Everyone assumes they are all innocent and can’t do any wrong, and when a massive entertainment industry giant starts “harming the children”, everyone starts to overreact, and strongly attacks the industry for fake allegations that have been completely fabricated in some cases. In the metal moral panic, very few real bands really were using backmasking and subliminal messaging and the parents groups kept misinterpreting lyrics to demonize the bands. The “satanic” bands like Slayer are fairly rare in Popular Metal, even then.  Most metal bands write about societal issues and Satan is rarely brought up unless it is to tell the tale of him possessing, or enticing people, to show the ills of temptation, in bands that write lyrics like that (Iron Maiden, did lyrics like this a lot). In the DND moral panic, roleplaying was mistook for possession. In the Coltan, video game, and Comic Book Moral Panics, nonsense was willingly made up to demonize the Artform inflicted. Coltan is mostly mined in Australia. Not Congo. And it’s used in ALL forms of electronics, from Cell phones to stereo systems. Not just for PS2’s. But the panic spreaders failed to mention either. They also claimed that 85% of the Coltan mined was from Congo, an inflated number. Wikipedia shows that less than 5% of Coltan comes from Congo. In the Video Game Moral Panic, nonsense was made up to make it look like School shooters were influenced by violent games, often times hoaxes were used and cited by newspapers, and to make it worse, psychologists actually spent the time to write books filled with nonsense claims about violent games being used in the military to break down the inhibition to kill. Then all the right wing attacking groups kept on making up new lies. This by far, is the worst example of scaremongering seen in ANY moral panic.

Can you name a single recent (within the last 50 years) moral Panic where kids aren’t the victim? I can only name one, the panic over Terrorism in the US that has been going around, fueling both Racism towards Muslims and the War on Terror. In that moral panic, the religious right perpetrate most of the scaremongering and the targets are random people. Not necessarily “2 year olds”.  It’s all about “saving the children”, in all these moral Panics.

I started something, anti-censorship,pro-freedom politcal minds might find interesting. Every sunday night, for 35  minutes or so, I discuss censorship issues, on violent games and occasionally, metal. I record it an upload it on youtube. For people who are interested go here and click on the link on the right that says “the erosion of freedom radio show” under playlists. Then choose the episode you want to watch (currently there is only the debut episode). Enjoy

– Blackplague222