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Censorship Entertainment Games

NY Post Says GTA Worse Than Molesting 251

Posted by simoniker
from the double-sigh dept.
wiredbeat2000 writes "The New York Post has an inflammatory article which argues that Take Two's Grand Theft Auto is worse than child molestation and more harmful than second hand smoke. The story, which appears in the business section, calls for an outright ban of video games it claims are no better than snuff films, and concludes: 'Stay away from this [Take Two] stock - far, far away - and you'll be doing both your wallet and your fellow man a favor'." Lucky the author hasn't checked out Manhunt yet, huh?
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NY Post Says GTA Worse Than Molesting

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  • by Demon-Xanth (100910) on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @01:24PM (#7836236)
    Can people have atleast ONE avenue of escapism without having to be protected from it? I think that guy missed the point of videogames in general.
    • Don't waste your time with videogames. I've seen handguns go for $500 and less. The youth is MUCH more concerned about dancing pixels than the reality outside. Cut your hair, buy a handgun, and welcome to the real world!
      • Handguns? (Score:3, Funny)

        by Demon-Xanth (100910)
        Why should I go out and get a handgun when I own two rifles? ...and for the record, Ted Kennedy's car has killed more people than those two rifles have.

        .
    • by pezpunk (205653) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @01:27PM (#7846263) Homepage


      cbyron@nypost.com [mailto]

      "don't you think your article was a tad .... ridiculous? do you propose we ban real life? it seems that your main problem with the game was how "realistic" it is. how free the player is to do whatever he wishes. what a horrible world that would be, if all of man's urges were suddenly loosed upon the world! hah. guess what, they already are, brother. and people don't go around killing hundreds of people at a time. sure, crime happens, but it's not because of a silly video game. if only Jeffrey Dahmer, Joseph Stalin, Jack the Ripper, Osama Bin Laden, and Adolf Hitler hadn't been influenced by those naughty video games, we'd be living in a clean, christian utopia by now!

      it's offensive to you. don't play it. you think it's bad for kids. so keep your kids away from it. don't tell me how to parent. MY kids will know the difference between right and wrong, fantasy and reality. maybe if you'd tought your kids the same, you wouldn't be so worried.

      the game is a simple power fantasy indulgence, just like a comic book, a sports car, or newspaper editorial. and frankly, it is an extremely well-done game. they didn't sell millions of copies simply based on gore. sure, that's what grabs the headlines, but the game is truly a tight bit of programming with fun, rewarding, and challenging play mechanics.

      "This is 10,000 times worse than the worst thing anybody thinks Michael Jackson ever did to a little boy"

      the most amazing thing i have ever read in my life is your suggestion that IMAGINARY VIOLENCE is worse for a child than REAL LIFE CHILD MOLESTATION. you say you would rather let your child be RAPED than play a VIDEO GAME. sir, now I am the one who is deeply offended, and frightened for your children."
  • by Uma Thurman (623807) on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @01:26PM (#7836257) Homepage Journal
    Whew! Thank goodness that's still OK.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @01:46PM (#7836503)
      funny thing is that a friend of mine was walking in the 'shop district' of town late one night and noticed a homeless man standing in front of the victoria's secret shop, rocking back and forth slightly. at first my friend figured this guy was really, really drunk and having trouble standing up. then he realized that this guy was actually wacking off while looking at the giant-sized posters of supermodels in lingerie. i guess i never really gave much thought to where and when homeless men masturbate. now i know. do i get a +5 informative for this post?
      • Several years ago in NY, a woman in an apartment call the cops on a homeless couple going at it on some railroad tracks.

        The ACLU defended the homeless couple. The woman was called as a witness. My favorite line from her was 'no, I'm not against the homeless having sex.'

        hello, yeah you are...where the frell are they going to do it.....

        hey baby, lets do it on the road.
  • But..but...

    Why didn't Sega catch all this heat years ago over Michael Jackson's Moonwalker game?

  • ookay (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward
    calls for an outright ban of video games it claims are no better than snuff films,

    So now we're going to take orders from the NY Times? "Oh, dear Times.. do tell us what video games YOU claim we need to ban?".

    Also, um... snuff films are more or less considered an urban legend. Aside from (possibly) the Faces of Death series, there are no substantially proven legitimate snuff films.

    I would be more concerned if my child was watching the WWF/WWE, Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, Sex in the City, Judging Amy
    • Re:ookay (Score:2, Insightful)

      by crombie (128709)
      It's the POST, not the TIMES!
  • priests (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @01:33PM (#7836347)
    Grand Theft Auto is worse than child molestation

    Twenty bucks says this opinionist is a moonlighting catholic priest.
  • by Palshife (60519) on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @01:34PM (#7836355) Homepage
    Is anyone else worried that this article elevates the acceptability of having sex with a child just so they can express their distaste towards a video game?
    • "Is anyone else worried that this article elevates the acceptability of having sex with a child just so they can express their distaste towards a video game?"

      The author's email address is 'cbyron@nypost.com', tell him what you think. I am.
  • by TRACK-YOUR-POSITION (553878) on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @01:44PM (#7836491)
    View this article if you must, but it's become all too common for everyone to write articles intended to piss off a great subset of people online in order to drive hits to their site. Please do not reward this silliness--remember to use proxomitron, junkbuster, whatever your favorite tool is for depriving these folks of the fruit of their agitations.
    • They dont want the hits, they want to appease their fellow nutty ultra-right wing readers. Newspapers toss them a bone to guarantee they renew their subscriptions and the "right Jebusly thing" was said.
  • by Descartes (124922) on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @01:45PM (#7836495) Homepage
    Does anyone else get the feeling that the authors of all of these anti-GTA articles haven't actually played the game?

    Ok, it is violent and often that violence is directed towards innocent people, but, violence towards innocent people is not the main point of the game. I mean, you can kill police or civilians but there are consequences. And the whole thing about the Haitians has nothing to do with innocent people from Haiti. You're in the middle of a gang war between the Cuban and the Haitians.

    I guess the real problem I have is that people seem to thing that by censoring the game that we'll get rid of violence between racial groups, etc. It's like saying movies that depict racially motivated violence should be censored. Our country will be in a sad state if that ever happens.

    I think part of the point of showing these kind of things is that we remember that they do happen. If we pretend there is no racism it won't go away, just get worse.

    I know, I'm preaching to the choir.
    • > Does anyone else get the feeling that the authors of all of these anti-GTA articles haven't actually played the game?

      Are you kidding? I suspect the article was paid for by Take Two to raise buzz about the game. Nothing sells like controversy.

      There's two publications that still seem to get a lot of press that even a media eclecticist (is that a word?) like myself can dismiss out of hand: The Register, and the New York Post. Seriously, they're rags.
    • by rifter (147452) on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @05:33PM (#7839126) Homepage

      I guess the real problem I have is that people seem to thing that by censoring the game that we'll get rid of violence between racial groups, etc. It's like saying movies that depict racially motivated violence should be censored. Our country will be in a sad state if that ever happens.

      Actually the sad thing is a major point of the game is how stupid and pointless gang and interracial violence is. In other words, it was meant to parody a real life problem and potentially could prevent such violence by waking people up to this fact. The main character is continually dragged into the middle of these conflicts but does not start them. By staying above these conflicts and befriending both sides the main character comes out on top after fighting off the myriad gangs trying to kill him.

      A major component of the game as well is the fact that gangs tend to take advantage of ethnic tensions and rivalries. The game features the sicilian mafia, southern US biker gangs, haitian and cuban gangs as well as the colombian cartels. There are various other nondescript gangs which appear to be ethnically segregated as well. The offending line "kill the haitians" is uttered by the cubano gangsters on their way to avenge deaths by haitian gangsters who have sworn "I will destroy the cubans." The whole game reads as a commentary and a parody of US gang violence and the underlying societal problems behind it.

    • Does anyone else get the feeling that the authors of all of these anti-GTA articles... are retarded fuckwits with no clue?

      Ugh. I'm so fucking sick of this gaming is destroying society bullshit. And films. And music.
  • read, laugh, move on (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Blob Pet (86206) on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @01:46PM (#7836502) Homepage
    This isn't news. It's a piece of opinion from some guy at the NY Post. People read the Post to get riled up and nothing more.
  • by SandSpider (60727) on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @01:46PM (#7836507) Homepage Journal
    Dear sir,


    You are a disgusting human being. "People, this is insane. This is 10,000 times worse than the worst
    thing anybody thinks Michael Jackson ever did to a little boy" To paraphrase, you seem to be saying
    that you would prefer 10,000 people to molest children rather than one adult play a video game.
    That's what you mean by "10,000 time worse," isn't it? Or are you saying that, if the team that
    developed Grand Theft Auto would have, rather than making its video games, gone out and molested
    10,000 children, that the world would be a better place?

    You say that Grand Theft Auto should be banned, "just like we ban child pornography and entertainment
    spectacles such as cock fighting and dwarf throwing." Do you see the difference between a video game
    and the three items listed above? If not, I'll tell you: one of the four things does not actually
    affect a living being. Just like books and newspaper articles glorifying child molestation. Since
    living people aren't hurt, it's a protected form of free speech. It may not be mankind's most
    glorious bit of free speech, but I fear that I have to disagree with you about how it compares to
    actual crimes.

    Brian J. Geiger

    P.S. I fear I did not bother to read the rest of your article, as the basic premise seemed so flawed
    as to make it not entirely worth my while to read the rest. I'm sure there were some very good points
    about business hiding there within the rhetoric. Good luck with that.
    • by iainl (136759)
      Thats a good letter, but I fear you may have made a mistake. Emails to this moron will just boost his ego at having made an article that caused discussion. Emails to his editor about how you feel about being informed that you could improve your impact on society by abusing children rather than playing a computer game, along with pointing out how many other readers might feel similiarly insulted given the very, very large sales figures this series has recorded, might get more done.
    • by xalres (668363) on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @02:50PM (#7837247)
      My letter
      The Grand Theft Auto series was meant for people with enough maturity and common sense to realize it's just a game and not reality, just as movies like The Godfather and Scarface are for those mature enough to see them as works of fiction. Obviously you can't be counted among them.


      I fail to see how you can rationalize statements like "This is 10,000 times worse than the worst thing anybody thinks Michael Jackson ever did to a little boy". I know this was said to shock a reaction out of people (at least I hope it was) but it was still a poor judgement call, especially for someone who writes for a news outlet such as the Post. There are scant few things in this world worse or more deserving of the harshest punishment available than child molestation and publishing computer games doesn't even come close.

      Perhaps the biggest issue I have with your editorial is that you demonize a company for taking the same creative liberties that movie creators have taken for decades. I know you have a moral issue with the games, that's your prerogative, but your point was lost on me when you started making radically untrue blanket statements and comparisons (see above). If you're not mature enough to handle such content, at least have the respect to let those of us who are enjoy our entertainment without being compared to pedophiles.

      Thank you.
    • In all seriousness, if Christopher Byron thinks that GTA: Vice City is worse than child molestation, then clearly he was never molested as a child.
  • by UV_Haze (561159) on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @01:57PM (#7836656) Homepage
    As much as I like GTA the author of this article does make some very pertinent points.

    Here in Canada there was a court case finding that kiddie porn art (i.e. no kids were harmed, these were drawings and paintings) were found to be illegal and so the same laws applied to these paintings.

    Taking this one step further like the author suggests, I can envision some wacky japanese game where you get to play a sexual predator. The goal of the game is to prey on women and neighbourhood children. Getting extra points for doing things like luring kids with candy or the promise of toys, and performing date rapes on unsuspecting college girls.

    I'm pretty sure a game like the one I described above would not be allowed to be sold in Canada. The majority of society would disapprove of this type of video game. I, myself find it very disturbing.

    I guess the bigger question is why, as a society, do we allow the simulation of illegal/immoral actions video games and not others.? Where is the line (so to speak) and why do we draw it where it is? What is the nature of the video gaming that makes some of these things appropriate? Is escapism an appropriate defence for sim murder but not for sim molestation? And if so, why not?

    This will become even more important with the next generation of systems that will allow for more realistic everything, including AI.

    So I've played philosopher for today. Maybe not very well. But tehre are a lot of good questions out there about this sort of stuff. GTA is only getting the pain right now because it's the game that is currently pushing the envelope...

    • by Anonymous Coward
      > Here in Canada there was a court case finding that kiddie porn art (i.e. no kids were harmed, these were drawings and paintings) were found to be illegal and so the same laws applied to these paintings.

      That's because the Canadian legal system is messed up. The point of child pornography laws, originally, was stated to prevent child from being sexual abused--over time, this point has been expanded to things which might hypothetically lead a child into becoming coerced or influenced into sexual abuse.
    • I'm pretty sure a game like the one I described above would not be allowed to be sold in Canada.

      And I'm pretty sure lots of Canadians who wanted to play it would just "pirate" it.
    • Okay, I'm stepping out on a limb here, but I think that they don't make sim-molestation games because the majority of the population finds it icky. I know there's anime that deals with it, but for the vast majority of people, child molestation and rape is a really nasty subject. Personally, even simulated molestation and rape would turn my stomach.

      --trb
    • The answer is... (Score:3, Insightful)

      by abulafia (7826)
      ...That the Canadian legal system has taken a wrong turn.

      In the name of protecting women from degrading images, they have banned lesbian porn repeatedly [www.xtra.ca].

      Canadian courts need to recognize that free speech means that things you don't like might be said, and that's OK.

      Before anyone gets excited about a USian attacking Canada, the U.S. isn't doing any better [sacurrent.com], and that bugs me, too.

      Full Disclosure: I used to work (volunteer) on a magazine who had issues banned by Canada. Thank Gloria Steinem for keeping

      • Your link was irrelevant to the topic. What is relevant is that a similar kiddie-porn-art law was overturned in the U.S. earlier this year.

        As for what you linked to, that is hardly the Patriot Act II that was passed. Look at it sometime. And where were you when this passed through Congress anyway?
    • Ok mark this as troll or whatever but you seem to be losing the point here THIS IS A VIDEO GAME not real life and i dont give a flying crap who you are or where your from comparing a video game to any form of child molestation or child porn and saying the game is worse is just SICK
    • by *weasel (174362) on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @05:16PM (#7838914)
      i hate to get up on teh soap box, but just in case you weren't just playing devils advocate (or slashdot troll)...

      here in america we have this thing called 'free speech' and a 'free market'. if protected free speech is found 'inappropriate' by most the 'free market' - people don't buy it and it goes away.

      we don't need laws to keep a sexual predator sim off the store shelves - we leave that up to distributors and consumers. if businesses don't want it on the shelf, and consumers don't want to buy it - it quickly disappears - if it ever got published in the first place. if it only exists in someone's private space - then why should I care if no person or animal is harmed?

      Canada is starting down the slippery slope of defining 'appropriate'ness of free speech. and once that truly happens then it won't be long before it all goes.

      after all, if child molestation and rape depictions aren't protected, then why should murder be protected? and what about fistfighting or war? you can't have a willing recipient of an assault rifle after all. what about obscure sexual fetishes that violate current canadian law? (think scat, beastiality, probably even things such a multipartner and oral/anal if its anything like most archaic US state laws)... then you'll lose unnecessarily harsh or ill-timed criticisms (of government, citizens, religion), etc, etc...

      furthermore, there is nothing in art today that hasn't be created before. human civilization hasn't fallen apart for depicting nudity, sex, murder, rape, or even child molestation in art or literature in the 4000 years of recorded history. (rape was a core concept in the original tale of Sleeping Beauty & child abduction and molestation was the prominent event in the myth of Zeus and Ganymede)

      Don't get me wrong, I loathe and despise child molesters and rapists, and the people who would create content to promote or condone such acts.

      But much as I hate them, I feel strongly enough about our rights to free speech that I would vote to support their rights to say, write, and draw anything they want so long as it doesn't hurt anyone. I wouldn't go into a store that sold that kind of product, and I wouldn't associate with anyone who purchased it -- but I'm smart enough to realize that the individuals in society are mature enough to decide these things for themselves.
    • Taking this one step further like the author suggests, I can envision some wacky japanese game where you get to play a sexual predator.

      Actually, such games exist in Japan, and while controversial, they are legal. There are Japanese superhero comics glorifying sexual predators as well.

      Probably the more you try to repress sex in a society the more people will be driven to seek outlets for that sexual desire. It is better that they do it through video games and pornography IMHO than that they do somethin

    • by dolo666 (195584) *
      To me games are about having fun. Subject matter is in context and can not be viewed out of context very well at all. That said, I think that if many sexual predators played rape games, they might not need to rape: they might expunge the need to do so from their systems, if it was realistic enough, and that might spare the children and women plagued by these misfits and miscreants!!

      You may find fewer crimes in general as a result. Especially if it's a good game, then everyone's playing it anyway and they a
    • The problem is that Grand Theft Auto III is very obviously patterned after some very well known mafia movies. If those movies are ok, why aren't videogames?

      Not long ago, an official from Australia called for the ban of Project Gotham Racing 2 [smh.com.au] because it "...sends the wrong message to young people. It is actually glorifying speed and power." So videogames are bad despite the fact that this game is at least advertised as being like the Fast and the Furious films.

      The problem is not that videogames are
    • Here in Canada there was a court case finding that kiddie porn art (i.e. no kids were harmed, these were drawings and paintings) were found to be illegal and so the same laws applied to these paintings.

      Here in the US, there was a court case finding that kiddie porn art was constitutionally protected free speech, as no actual children were harmed in the making. (For the curious, check the 2000 and 2001 Supreme Court decisions. I don't have the time to look it up myself.)
  • by iainl (136759) on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @01:58PM (#7836666)
    Isn't the New York Post a Newscorp product these days? Owned by Rupert Murdoch, and part of the same conglomerate that brought us:

    Fear Factor
    Temptation Island
    Freddy Got Fingered
    Aliens Vs. Predator (the game)
    etc.?

    Come to think of it, I wonder if this is in any way, shape or form connected with the fact that this company is also responsible (certainly in license at least) for Simpsons Hit 'n' Run, a game that steals so much from GTA that its a wonder that Take Two haven't sued?
  • My response... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @02:04PM (#7836740)
    My response...

    I am a 28 year old adult male who happens to play video games. I'm not going to bother with an introductory, and I'm going to get right into it.

    To quote the article, "People, this is insane. This is 10,000 times worse than the worst thing anybody thinks Michael Jackson ever did to a little boy"

    Insane? You're calling playing a video game, something that isn't real and is meant for a mature audience 10,000 times worse than MOLESTING A YOUNG BOY *not* Insane?

    Have your head checked. There almost isn't a crime worse than taking advantage of a minor in a sexual fashion. It's beneath human behaviour.

    The author argues that there is a ratings system that is unenforcable and means nothing, and is irrelevant.

    The ratings system in Video Games is virtually identical to movies. Movies are rating G, PG, AA, R and X/NC17. Games are rated as E(veryone), T(een), M(ature) and A(dult). There is a fifth category who's acronymn I am not aware of, but the category is for the very young, toddler aged, and educational. Adult is reserved for anything containing sexually explicit content, similar to NC17. Mature is the equivalent if AA. T equates to PG, and E is the gaming G.

    If a parent buys a child who is under the age of majority, and the game is rated M for mature, how is that the gaming companies fault? The parent should be made aware of the ratings system. Every game box sold in Canada and the US has the rating printed in large black and white letters right on the front of the box, including what the ratings mean. It's as ludicrous as a person suing Take Two, Sony, Rockstar for 244.5 million dollars because their kid took a loaded gun from their house and shot at a highway, killing someone, then blaming Grand Theft Auto. The game is not responsible here. How did the child get the gun? Why was it loaded? Why wasn't it in a locked case out of the reach of children? Why weren't the kids taught by the parents that shooting at a vehicle is not a particularly good idea?

    If video games had this much of an influence on the youth of today, I should be a homicidal maniac. I've played video games since the days of the Atari 2600, and have seen just about everything there is to see in a video game. I've dumped enough quarters into arcade games that I should be able to spit fireballs from my hands while screaming death phrases at the tops of my lungs, because that's what video games teach you to do.

    Oh, but Vice City is "realistic," you say. Realistic huh? So if I look in one direction, see 3 cars driving down the street, then turn around 180 degrees, see 3 more cars, and then turn around again and those original 3 cars have disappeared (which is what happens in the game), that's real, is it?

    I can take a car and drive at approximately 2 mph, hit a hydro pole and send it crashing to the ground, because that's real is it?

    I can walk down the street and find a surface-to-air missile launcher lying in someones back yard? Great! Sign me up to live in that neighbourhood!

    Oh, but Vice City "looks" realistic, you say. Why? Just because the characters portrayed in it are not cartoonish? I can tell that they are digital representations of people. They don't look like real people to me. For one thing, people have fingers. That actually separate. And bend. And can be used to pick things up.

    Video games are NOT REAL. They are fictional. Imaginative. Fun to play.

    Michael Jackson has been charged with child molestation. That is real. If proven, that is morally disgusting.

    Shooting cars on highways is real. That is a real case currently in the US legal system.

    The bottom line: It is because of drivel like this article that I have cancelled my subscription to your newspaper.

    Good day.
  • Amusing to consider (Score:5, Interesting)

    by bugbread (599172) on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @02:08PM (#7836777)
    That editorial was beyond awesome. My favorite part:

    "This is 10,000 times worse than the worst thing anybody thinks Michael Jackson ever did to a little boy"

    If my math works right, with sales exceeding 25,000,000 copies, he would prefer if there were 25 million fewer GTA players and 250 billion more child molestors.

    Alternatively, he would find someone turning off their PS2 and molesting a neighborhood kid to be an improvement.

    I think we can guess this guy's real agenda (hehe).
    • "If my math works right, with sales exceeding 25,000,000 copies, he would prefer if there were 25 million fewer GTA players and 250 billion more child molestors."

      You know what I find funny? A couple of kids try to blamed their bad behaviour on a game they played, and the media ran with it. When I was in first grade, my school had a chocolate sale. They sent me home with some chocolate bars to sell. I ate one of them. When I realized that somebody would notice a bar was missing, I went to my mom and
    • OK, so this guy wants, instead of 1/10000 of the US population to be playing GTA, the entire US population to be child molestors. It's a FUCKING VIDEO GAME (well, there is fucking in GTA:VC). Can we get a photo of this guy, and check the plastic-to-real-skin ratio?
    • Perhaps the author of this article is actually a Priest!! Or maybe it's just a psuedonym for Michael Jackson. hmm.. The possibilities are mindboggling. :D

  • "This is 10,000 times worse than the worst thing anybody thinks Michael Jackson ever did to a little boy"

    Well, if the Catholic Church thinks it's ok...

    " - or than any lie the feds think Martha Stewart ever told them, "

    I don't feel like Martha is exactly the worst perpetrator of this sort of crime out there. She's just famous, publicly hated, and a woman. Burn her!

    "or any line in any song that Bruce Springsteen ever sang that rankled a cop in the Meadowlands."

    Yeah, but that was A-OK when Bruce did it.

  • Dwarf-throwing is illegal?! Did I miss a meeting?

  • by vitaflo (20507) on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @02:27PM (#7836994) Homepage
    "Here's a letter to the NY Post. The worst piece of paper on the east coast. Matter of fact the whole states. 40 cents in NY City, 50 cents elsewhere, and makes no goddamn sense at all. America's oldest continuously published daily piece of bullshit."

    Nuff said.
  • by MBraynard (653724) on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @02:29PM (#7837012) Journal
    But newspapers have, namely the Spanish American War, and namely the newspaper for which the NY Post is present day incarnation - William Randolph Hearst's New York Journal. See more here [humboldt.edu].

    Perhaps newspapers should also be banned?

  • Probably, just mad because he can't trade in his "Thiller", "Bad", and "Dangerous" CDs for the GTA double pack.
  • While I wouldn't go as far as the article's author has, have you ever noticed the following [may be American culture specific]:

    • Although our society seems to punish murderers worse then rapists, games about pretending to murder others are considered okay, while a game about raping others is considered indecent. Why the discontinuity?
  • by cybermancer (99420) on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @02:36PM (#7837093) Homepage
    Did anyone else get the big Victoria's Secret ad on the side of the article when they read it? You know the one with the model wearing next to nothing. The kind of thing that was classified as pornography not that long a go.

    Interesting that they would be so concerned when individuals choose to expose themselves to a game, but they would force everyone's (well, the few people that actually read their pages) exposure to risque pictures of scantly clad models without warning. Glad to know someone else is busy trying to decide what is good for us.

    I wouldn't be surprised if they didn't have an article bashing Victoria's Secret ads a few years back, but now that they are paying the advertising budget they need to find a new target. Maybe Take-Two should just put an ad on the NY Post site. Isn't this sort of thing extortion (buy an ad from us or we will give you a bad review?)

    I quit listening to other people's opinions a long time ago.

  • HA (Score:3, Funny)

    by falcon5768 (629591) <Falcon5768 AT comcast DOT net> on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @02:51PM (#7837259) Journal
    I wonder if he even knew about Manhunt... which IS a game based around a Snuff film????? Maybe manhunt 2 will have HIM killed in the begining?
  • For those who dont know, the NY Post is little more than a regonal Tabloid, they have no honest reporting anywhere in the paper and very often copy other peoples articles from other papers with a yellow journalistic slant. NO one around here honestly takes them seriously, which is exactly how we should take this peice of garbage
  • by tprime (673835) on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @02:59PM (#7837366)
    This guy needs a "one on one" meeting with Tommy Vercetti.
  • Hum. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by skinfitz (564041) on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @03:02PM (#7837395) Journal
    You can kill a cop, steal his gun, and then use it to shoot someone else. Or you can pick up a prostitute and have sex with her in the back of your stolen car, then beat her to death - or shoot her, bludgeon her, whatever you want.

    He's right - you CAN do that. You know what? You can do that in real life too!

    Someone should tell the cops - oh and stop investing in condom and gun companies.
    • When I read that line I remember thinking: "You can drive a taxi, take people to the hospital, and put out fires, whatever you want."
    • He's right - you CAN do that.
      Yeah, but people are doing it in the game "for fun". Isn't that twisted?
  • Reading the New York Post is worse than playing GTA.
  • I can see it now... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Captain Beefheart (628365) on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @03:25PM (#7837675)
    When this toad comes strutting back to his column for the next installment, he'll preen for a good paragraph about the huge reader response and quote some eloquent people who agreed with him, thereby implying that the response was largely positive, never mind the legion of people, gamers or otherwise, who express confusion and outrage at him favorably comparing pedophilia to playing a videogame.

    I did a little research on this guy, and he has several non-fiction books under his belt with the same hellfire-and-brimstone invective. They also didn't cause so much as a blip on the cultural radar. Yet in an interview at Salon.com [salon.com], he has the gall to say, in response to asking why he had no problem with saying in his column that Martha Stewart had a nice ass, "One of the things I try to do in these columns that I write -- I consider this as kind of a personal mission -- is to try to purge our language of political correctness. It just stultifies. Isn't that what provocative, memorable language does? It forces back the frontiers of expression."

    So this guy sees his newspaper column as the beacon of a lingual crusade? I think what we're dealing with here is delusions of granduer, which goes partway towards explaining his vehemence about GTA: Vice City. (But I will not pick apart what he wrote about the game, not for a Bill O'Reilly nutball of the print world.) That, and the fact that he's no spring chicken or versed in videogames, otherwise he couldn't claim the game's visuals were almost photorealistic.

    Bah. Don't grace this hack with an e-mail.

    • Bah. Don't grace this hack with an e-mail.

      Agreed. Email his editor. Email every other @nypost.com address. Hell, email every newspaper you can think of. But not this guy. If he expects the world to slave to his opinion, then imagine his shock when the world turns on him.
  • Second hand smoke? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by JabberWokky (19442) <slashdot.com@timewarp.org> on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @03:29PM (#7837735) Homepage Journal
    Speaking of the oft cited "truth" that videogames are bad for you, has there ever been a scientific study that has shown second hand smoke does anything other than distress people with asthma? The WHO did several studies that said it was safe.

    --
    Evan "I hate being around smokers for asthetic reasons"

  • by *weasel (174362) on Tuesday December 30, 2003 @04:37PM (#7838416)
    funny how grand theft auto is really nothing but an interactive version of Scarface (which Vice City makes nearly a literal translation) -- yet scorcese is a visionary while the video game needs to be banned. cute hypocracy.

    at lest this guy isn't calling for a ban on violent content in video games. oh wait... no... he essentially is by calling the rating system 'unenforceable' (no more unenforceable than the MPAAs rating system) and by suggesting the legitimacy of spurious game-blame lawsuits (suits that contend games make people killers)

    the silver lining is that the medium is still gaining momentum. i just hope it sticks to its guns and lets developers make whatever they want, and lets the gamers decide what gets supported with their money.

    american media industries that -have- stuck to their guns:
    literature, painting, rock music, sculpture, film

    american media industries that haven't stuck to their guns:
    roleplaying games, comic books, cartoons

    one set of these media is heralded as art, as 'legitimate'. individual works are judged on merit and the media itself carries no preconceived notions of 'allowable' or 'appropriate' content.

    the other set of these media is heralded as fit only for children. why? because of self-censorship of content.
    TSR took 'offensive' material out of D&D. ensuring that under no circumstances would anything other than cartoony child-safe good and evil be depicted. similarly with comic books and cartoons.

    these industries willfully decided that only child-safe content should be created in their styles and media. so now their content is wholly marginalized and looked down upon based solely on its media.

    consider japanese anime and their comics. sure, we make jokes about tentacle pron but they are not regarded derisively as child's materials in japan. they are individually judged on content, not with a blanket assumption based on its media.
    why? because their industry -didn't- decide that tentacle pron was inappropriate for comics, or nudity and demons inappropriate for roleplaying games.
    • funny how grand theft auto is really nothing but an interactive version of Scarface (which Vice City makes nearly a literal translation) -- yet scorcese is a visionary while the video game needs to be banned. cute hypocracy.

      Scorsese didn't have anything to do with Scarface. It was directed by Brian DePalma. Screenplay by Oliver Stone, et al. I agree with your point though, there ought to be a market for adult video games. I heard the other day that the average age for video game players is around 28. Wow.
  • Shall we also ban violent movies and books? Oh wait -- there's that First Amendment.
  • Just before christmas I saw ads for the 11:00 news. Basic premise:

    "This video game lets you tie up and shoot prostitutes and is ultra violent. Games have gone too far"

    And the kicker that had me chuckling for a good 5minutes, all the footage they showed was from Duke Nukem 3D with those pixelated strippers.

    People will continue to get uppity about video games just like they get uppity about some books. These are the same people that don't think evolution happened, science is a joke, and then argue using sc

  • I will now stop playing GTA and go molest a child. Apparently you would prefer that I did.

    From,
    A Concerned Ex-Gamer


    How long until I expect a response?
  • The Author of the Article goes into Great Depth on what you can do in the game.

    For Example:

    "You can pursue your goal by killing Haitians, of course, but you can also kill anyone (or everyone) else. You can machine-gun them, beat them with baseball bats, chop them up with machetes or run them over with stolen cars.

    And when you do, everything will look incredibly and shockingly real, with blood spewing everywhere.

    You can kill a cop, steal his gun, and then use it to shoot someone else. Or you can pick up
  • From the article:

    "Besides: By what preposterous reasoning can one argue that once someone turns 17 years of age it magically becomes OK to glorify mass murder? Are we saying that it would have been OK for that Beltway Sniper guy - who was apparently in his 40s - to have been allowed to play 'Grand Theft Auto' before going on his killing spree, but it wouldn't have been OK for that young teenager who went along with him to have done the same?"

    So the author is proposing a moral quandry that has no basis in
  • So, if you selectively remove sentences, you get this: New York-based Take-Two Interactive is a Nasdaq-traded company in the video game business. Over the last couple of years, the company has been one of Wall Street's hottest stocks, climbing by more than 500 percent to a high of nearly $42 per share earlier this year. The latest installment in the company's best-selling "Grand Theft Auto" series - "Grand Theft Auto: Vice City" - has been on the market for a little over a year now and has already sold
  • ...where is the line in making videogames that allow for users to simulate illegal activity?

    If, for example, the gratuitous violence and prostitution of GTA is okay (I enjoy the game), then who's to say that a game as a rapist isn't? Obviously, even in America people would shrink from a rapist game, but where is the intellectual or moral line drawn? Is the line drawn merely by what will sell?

    In movies, which I argue are the most relevant comparison, the MPAA rating system serves as a social control, bec

"A great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices." -- William James

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