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Jack Thompson Calls Cops on Penny-Arcade

CmdrTaco posted more than 8 years ago | from the i'm-gonna-tell dept.

The Courts 913

Anon1001 sent us the latest developments in the ongoing saga between Miami Attorney Jack Thompson and Penny-Arcade. So far the story goes that Jack has filed a wrongful death suit against Rock Star, claiming that GTA is a cop killing training simulator responsible for the murder of a pair of cops. He also offered $10k to charity if anyone who would develop some ridiculous murder spree game. When someone did it, and he changed his mind and Penny-Arcade donated the cash instead. All of this is being documented on the Penny Arcade website, in phone calls, rants and comics, as well as an 'I Hate Jack Thompson' T-Shirt. (Note, Slashdot's parent company owns ThinkGeek). He has now called the cops claiming harassment. Update: 10/18 17:40 GMT by Z : It seems like this confrontation has been brewing all summer. The most recent altercation is just another link in the chain made by Thompson's reaction to Hot Coffee and his crusade against the Sims 2. Further, PA has put up the scan of the letter to the cops, and a photo of the check.

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Ah-Hahahahahaha! (-1, Offtopic)

drewzhrodague (606182) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818324)

Read that on Fark already. What's with yesterday's news, stuff that mattered?

Re:Ah-Hahahahahaha! (2, Funny)

peculiarmethod (301094) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818339)

and your name is drew... hmmmmmmmm.. plug perhaps? is THAT why all slashdots stories end up on fark after they're posted? hmmmmmm?


Re:Ah-Hahahahahaha! (1)

Kirran (923838) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818386)

For the record, the actual threat of police action against PA happened only this morning. The rest of it has been on-going.

Disbarrment (5, Funny)

Gojira Shipi-Taro (465802) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818331)

It's going to happen very soon now, as Jack is getting loonier and loonier. He keeps dancing around direct legal threats, because he knows what will happen. Soon he will slip, and soon after that he won't be a lawyer anymore, and won't THAT be a shame?

Re:Disbarrment (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13818406)

These idiots have been so careless as to post on their web site what they are doing regarding the harassment of me."

"I look forward to working with your fine Police Department to shut this little extortion factory down and/or arrest some of its employees."

Slander and lible... I hope the folks at PA sue the shit out of him for a few million, and then (irony sweet irony) donate the proceeds to some university that teaches game programming!

Of course, the guy could claim mental incompetence I guess.

("Optical?" where's the mind reading capcha today?)

Re:Disbarrment (4, Informative)

LSD-OBS (183415) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818522)

He spelled the name of the website wrong anyway.

Re:Disbarrment (5, Insightful)

mboverload (657893) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818432)

This really reminds of of McCarthy. People eventually saw him for what he was, a fucking lunatic.

Re:Disbarrment (2, Interesting)

pete6677 (681676) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818558)

Sounds like an Elliot Spitzer wannabe. For those that don't know, Spitzer is New York's attorney general who is known for shaking down corporations in the name of "fighting corruption". He started out with noble goals, but soon let the power go to his head.

IANAL & YANAL (4, Insightful)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818489)

It's going to happen very soon now, as Jack is getting loonier and loonier. He keeps dancing around direct legal threats, because he knows what will happen. Soon he will slip, and soon after that he won't be a lawyer anymore, and won't THAT be a shame?

How, pray, does an attorney get disbarred for being a loonie? Half the western governments would lose representatives, MPs, etc. on that claim. More to the point:

He has now called the cops claiming harassment.

He will now harass PA and the thing is, he knows full well how to do it and could make PA suffer in the short run.

I have no doubts he has nary a leg to stand on, bringing this all upon himself by raising himself to a Public Figure, which surrenders certain protections.

But he'd make a GREAT politician... (5, Insightful)

KingSkippus (799657) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818498)

GREAT in the sense of successful, of course, not in the sense of "good for the people."

You all are taking note of what he's trying to do, right? He's trying to transform the gamer community's reaction to his lunacy into attacks on his cause, which is, at least in his mind, protecting innocent kids and brave police officers.

It's just a matter of time before it becomes a real simple equation:

Disagreeing with Jack Thompson = Helping to kill cops

At that point, it becomes really easy to pass laws banning the types of videogames that Jack disagrees with. (Then movies, then web sites, maybe even books...)

Yep, he may be just a lawyer right now, but he clearly has higher intentions in mind, and he's using skills that have been taught very well over the past few years to get elected. It doesn't take too much gray matter to realize that soccer moms outnumber gaming advocates by a pretty wide margin, so who would you rather have included in your base?

The crying shame of it is that given America's record of picking leaders lately, he'll probably succeed, unless at least a few people not just read Slashdot, but actually act on what they read here.

Send a message, folks, and get out and vote. And not just for the big elections every four years. Vote in your Congressional elections. Vote in your state elections. Vote for your local councilmembers. Spread the word and get your friend to vote. Don't be afraid to use that fancy gaming machine to write a fickin' letter [] now and then. What do you say, can we please stop the ensuing madness to come before it gets started?

Jack wants to protect children and cops. Hey, I do too, I just happen to think he's going about it all wrong. The question in my mind now is: Who will protect the rest of us from Jack?

Wow (1)

Tebriel (192168) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818335)

The man gets a $10k tax break from Gabe and Tycho and he goes to the cops.

The man's intelligence must be so staggering, it's beyond my comprehension.

Or maybe he's a just a loony.

Re:Wow (1)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818436)

Umm, a $10k tax break doesn't do you any good if you lose or give away the $10k. You're still down $10k, less the taxes you would have paid on the 10k.

Much better from a purely financial standpoint to not give away the money at all, with certain limited specific exceptions (I am not a tax accountant).

Re:Wow (1)

kidgenius (704962) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818476)

Yes, except Jack Thompson is out $0 and he gets the $10k break. So, he stands to gain.

Re:Wow (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13818479)

They gave the money in his name. He did not lose any money. If he can in fact write off the donation they made in his name then he has benefitted.

Re:Wow (1)

h4rm0ny (722443) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818502)

Actually, there are a few ways that charitable donations can be profitable for you. In this particular case however, the money was donated by PA, not him, so he would theoretically be saving money on this; except that he wont qualify for the tax break, PA will.

All they've done (I assume) is say in the accompanying letter, "we are donating this on behalf of..."

Re:Wow (1)

Time_Ngler (564671) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818544)

But, er, Jack didn't give away any money. Gabe and Tycho just donated the money in his name.

Re:Wow (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13818481)

Not to even try to defend the guy (he is a jackass afterall) but I suspect that he is angry that Penny-Arcade indirectly released his email address and phone number; being that PA is one of the widest read web comics I suspect that he recieved hundreds of emails and phone calls (that would annoy anyone).

Being a lawyer I would think that he would realize that what PA did (albeit annoying) is far from illegal, thus the cops can't do anything

post (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13818340)

first post

Re:post (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13818409)

Ha Ha, you fucking loser!!!

Wow (1)

valeriyk (914993) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818341)

Sounds like PA is having fun with this... AFAIK, people can say pretty much anything on their shirts... Oh well, guess litigation is always the way to go.

Re:Wow (1)

n9uxu8 (729360) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818545)

Though one can't say Prarie Ho' Companion on a shirt...


Eh.... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13818349)

He also offered $10k to charity if anyone who would develop some ridiculous murder spree game.

What the fuck does that even mean?!

Re:Eh.... (5, Informative)

cjm182 (323809) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818447)

He had a "modest proposal" [] , loosely based off Jonathan Swift's "Modest Proposal (1729)" [] only not as well written. He offered $10,000 to charity if someone would make his violent videogame idea. Of course, he backed down after groups started to actually make the game.

Penny-Arcade accused him of playing a "shell-game" and donated the money themselves, satisfied that Jack's orginal proposal had been satisfied to the letter.

Re:Eh.... (3, Funny)

droptone (798379) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818548)

So ughhh...when do we get to eat the poor? It is clear they are asking for it.

The idea was (4, Informative)

autopr0n (534291) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818462)

He wanted to make a video game about a father who's son does something violent after playing video games. The father would go nuts and kill video game developers. He offered to donate $10k to the charity of the developers choice if the game was made. A game (actually, a GTA mod) was made, and Thompson reneged on the offer

Re:Eh.... (2, Funny)

stanmann (602645) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818463)

It means that He offered $10k to charity if anyone who would develop some ridiculous murder spree game [] . It also means you don't read Slashdot all that often.

Re:Eh.... (5, Funny)

lrucker (621551) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818543)

It also means you don't read Slashdot all that often.

Well, the editors don't, so why should he?

Fascinating, but who hears it? (1)

YankeeInExile (577704) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818350)

I am fascinated by the whole story -- before this week, I had never heard of this nutjob.

Therein lies the crux of the problem: This guy (Thompson) is railing against freedom of expression, and the mainstream press is ignoring him in droves.

Re:Fascinating, but who hears it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13818435)

You have to be actively ignoring gaming news to not hear about this guy. He was the one responsible for the recent re-rating of GTA, which was covered by just about every major news outlet in existance.

Re:Fascinating, but who hears it? (1)

mooingyak (720677) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818456)

I've heard his name many times over, first in the late 80s. He gets mainstream press now and then.

Re:Fascinating, but who hears it? (1)

vercingectorix (678597) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818477)

An old saying: Never fight with a Pig (Thomson) because the Pig will like it and you will only get dirty. Lets end this pariah's 15 minutes and just stop listening to/posting his tantrums and out of touch rantings. It's like the whole William Hung (of American Idol fame) thing, the guy sees lots of people paying attention to him and ends up thinking he inspires people, when in reality he's just a part of a sad media freakshow. Thomson needs to be trated as the social outcast that he is and be properly ignored.

Re:Fascinating, but who hears it? (1)

Iriel (810009) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818483)

Some of what he's been doing for several years now has had its share of effects. He was involved in the case against 2 Live Crew in which some of the members were actually arrested! If I'm not mistaken (though, I could be) I do believe that's the lawsuit that started the famous Parental Advisory labels on CDs. He was the lawyer who went against Ice-T's (or was it Ice Cube?, please correct if you know) infamous song "Cop Killer".

He's been the rallying general in almost all the lawsuits against RockStar games for GTA titles, but I'm not sure if the Seattle cops are going to give him the time of day if they know that he called them while claiming that NIMF was bought out by Best Buy and is claiming to be suing Best Buy and Target for pre-ordering Bully before it even comes out.

Witness the complete and total meltdown of a mind, and I'm not joking at all.

Re:Fascinating, but who hears it? (1)

stanmann (602645) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818524)

It was the Same Ice-T that plays a cop on L&O: SVU.

Ice T's heavy metal rock group "Body Count" (1)

mindaktiviti (630001) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818525)

It was Ice T's group Body Count that did the infamous "Cop Killer" song.

Re:Fascinating, but who hears it? (5, Informative)

Yocto Yotta (840665) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818495)

Jack Thompson:

+Led the campaign against the 1989 2 Live Crew album "As Nasty As They Wanna Be", and later, Ice T's "Cop Killer."
+Filed with the FCC regarding the contents of a 2003 edition of Howard Stern's radio show resulted in Clear Channel Communications being fined $496,000 in 2004.
+Filed, in 1999, a $33 million federal products liability lawsuit against several entertainment companies, including Time Warner Inc., Polygram Film Entertainment Distribution Inc., Palm Pictures, Island Pictures and New Line Cinema, Atari Corp., Nintendo of America, Sega of America Inc. and Sony Computer Entertainment on behalf of the parents of victims of the 1997 Paducah schoolhouse shootings.
+Most recently has taken his tirade against videogame publishers Take Two (Grand Theft Auto series, Bully et. al.), Capcom (Killer 7), and EA (The Sims. Yeah really).

A great interview with Jack by Chatterbox Video Game Radio can be found at: [] .

This guy has really made himself a credible source for irrationality and brought many smiles to sane peoples faces.

Most comment points excerpted from

This Will Be Good (1)

Zediker (885207) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818351)

Its like a car wreck, you dont want to stare, but you cant look away!

Rockstar Bites Back (5, Funny)

conner_bw (120497) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818352)

This site: []

is apparently the result of some elaborate parody described here: 11598 []

Re:Rockstar Bites Back (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13818541)

Did anyone else realize.... Citizens United Negating Technology For Life Aand People's Safety

Wow (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13818353)

I sure hope they cite his ass for making a false report. Publications are not harrassment. Jack Thompson himself started this mess. Does he consider himself guilty of "harassing" the makers of GTA? ...the video game industry? loving Slashdotters everywhere?

Re:Wow (4, Informative)

schon (31600) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818417)

Thompson himself started this mess.

<imitation type="loser jack">
No, he didn't! no he didn't! no he didn't! []

The VG cats guys started it when they replied to the email he sent them!

This is good (1)

faloi (738831) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818354)

The more extreme he goes, the more orginizations and politicians will distance themselves from him. Filing charges against sites like Penny Arcade should hasten his fall to obscurity. Or at least I can dream.

What about VGCats? (3, Informative)

hyu (763773) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818356)

Since VGCats were the ones who posted all his contact information, wouldn't it make more sense to go after them? Penny Arcade, who are not really a company lack Jack insists they are, really only recounted a story about Jack and nothing more.

Re:What about VGCats? (1)

NoTheory (580275) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818501)

Well, this would be difficult for a Miami-based lawyer, because Scott Ramsoomair is a Toronto-based Canadian :P

What an idiot. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13818357)

IAAL, and I gotta say, Jack Thompson, YOU SUCK.

Well, the T-shirt is a little much... (2, Insightful)

eln (21727) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818364)

I mean sure, this guy is a blowhard and a liar, but I think the T-shirt goes a little too far. However, it doesn't constitute harrasment. A bunch of geeks calling his house or hacking into his email or whatever else does, though. I don't know if that sort of this is happening yet, but you can bet it will if this continues.

Re:Well, the T-shirt is a little much... (2, Insightful)

Ieshan (409693) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818515)

Why is the T-Shirt a bit much? Thompson has publicly expressed his views against a certain industry and group of individuals, and some of those people are expressing the view that Thompson is an idiot and his opinion is asinine.

If you say that a group of people are vile sinners who are going to hell, you can bet damn right that group of people is going to publicly disagree with you. I don't really see the problem.

Re:Well, the T-shirt is a little much... (1)

eln (21727) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818556)

Except they're not saying they think he's an idiot and disagree with his opinion, they're saying they hate him, which is very different. If the T-Shirt said "I disagree with Jack Thompson," that would be a different story.

Look, I'm not saying people don't have the right to wear a t-shirt expressing hatred for someone. I just think it's over the top and uncalled for.

boobies? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13818365)


Re:boobies? (4, Funny)

72beetle (177347) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818482)

Just one, and surpise, he's a lawyer.

Beautiful... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13818366)

"These idiots have been so careless as to post on their web site what they are doing regarding the harassment of me."

In the same sentence he's call them idiots he gives the wrong web address.

Now that's liebel (4, Funny)

MacFury (659201) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818389)

Hey, looks like a written attack on Penny Arcade. They should counter sue on the grounds that they are not idiots :-)

Re:Now that's liebel (1)

Tebriel (192168) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818412)

That might not be a winnable lawsuit =p

Re:Now that's liebel (1)

Krach42 (227798) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818458)

You'd have to prove that Jack intended it as "they have an IQ lower than 50", and that this somehow tarnishes their image.

If it's just an insult, then it can't be libel.

Thank god someone is doing something... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13818369)

Won't somebody please think of the children -- and run down Jack Thompson with an 18-wheeler!

Re:Thank god someone is doing something... (5, Funny)

FidelCatsro (861135) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818451)

I will offer 10K* to the first person who makes a game involving running Jack Thompson over with an 18-wheeler .**

*10k meaning a 10k text file composed of the words "Jack Thompson is a twit" , as opposed to 10,000 in money
**This is satire , a parody of Jack Thompsons Parody ***
*** This , like J. Thompsons Satire is poor Satire .

Gouranga! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13818471)

That which brings the highest happiness.

Waaah! (1)

WilyCoder (736280) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818371)

Watch out, here comes the Waaaaaaaaah partol!

Re:Waaah! (1)

Kurrurrin (790594) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818509)

Its a Waaaaaaahmbulance, you dummy.

Re:Waaah! (1)

WilyCoder (736280) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818523)

He called the cops, not 911. Ass master.

Re:Waaah! (1)

seth50k (907196) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818528)

I believe it's Waaaaaaaaa-mbulance.

That's a paddlin'..... (1)

blankoboy (719577) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818373)

That's a paddlin'.....

Poetic justice (5, Insightful)

H_Fisher (808597) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818377)

This is exactly what blowhards like Jack Thompson deserve: to be publicly lampooned for their ridiculous actions.

What does this man think he's going to accomplish? His vitriolic actions are very unlikely to change anyone's mind about the issue of video game violence. I teach argumentative writing and rhetoric to college students; one of the first things we teach is to know one's audience. Very few people of the ultra-conservative persuasion, however, need to be persuaded - they already are fanatically against video games that contain violence, sex, etc.

And his tactics - wilfully distorting the truth, branding video game makers as murderers, setting up straw men to attack in his ravings about violent entertainment - well, I doubt anyone who's played the games he's targeting is going to burn their copy of GTA because of the things Thompson is saying.

Bravo, Penny Arcade, for helping him do what he'd end up doing anyway: alienating anyone who might have listened to a more logical or reasonable argument against game violence, and generating more media attention for Rockstar Games et al. so they will, in turn, sell more games and continue creating popular content. For a lawyer, Thompson seems to have missed that one little maxim: "any press is good press."

Re:Poetic justice (4, Interesting)

Ieshan (409693) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818474)

"This is exactly what blowhards like Jack Thompson deserve: to be publicly lampooned for their ridiculous actions."

This is exactly what the constitution guarrentees me, you, and everyone else the right to do. Whether or not they deserve it, it's certainly within my constitutional rights. See Jerry Falwell for relevant details.

Well, it's entirely possible he's crazy (4, Insightful)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818555)

I don't mean like crazy as an insult crazy, I mean crazy in a medical sense. He really does show many signs of schizophrenia. I mean under the "delusions" sections of the diagnosis he seems ot meet 3 of the 4 to a T:

1. Paranoid delusions, or delusions of persecution, for example believing that people are "out to get" you, or the thought that people are doing things when there is no external evidence that such things are taking place. 2. Delusions of reference - when things in the environment seem to be directly related to you even though they are not. For example it may seem as if people are talking about you or special personal messages are being communicated to you through the TV, radio, or other media. 3. Somatic Delusions are false beliefs about your body - for example that a terrible physical illness exists or that something foreign is inside or passing through your body. 4. Delusions of grandeur - for example when you believe that you are very special or have special powers or abilities. An example of a grandiouse delusion is thinking you are a famous rock star.

Well he certianly seems to think people are out to get him, he seems to have delusions of reference as well, and he sure as hell has delusions of grandeur as he seems to think he's a great crusader against evil. He meets various other criteria as well:

# disorganized thinking # difficulty understanding # difficulty expressing thoughts # difficulty integrating thoughts, feelings and behavior

Now of course I am not a psychologist (though that is what my degree is in) and even if I were, you cannot diagnose a condition like schizophrenia from things over the Internet, but there's enough irrational behaviour that it certianly gives me cause to wonder. The man may honestly be clinicly crazy, and if that's the case, his rationale for his actions isn't likely to make sense to anyone.

From the World of Warcraft community. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13818388)

From the world of warcraft community, We'd like to give this insightful advice to Jack Thompson. "CRY MORE FGT" Since I can't hide behind a level 1 alt here, I'll just AC it. HAND.

I think I'm not alone in saying... (1)

Phil John (576633) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818393)

...what a complete douche thompson is.

Re:I think I'm not alone in saying... (1)

ethx1 (532391) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818467)

You are.

The rest of us are saying he is a fucking nutcase.

Bar sanctions needed (4, Insightful)

dartmouth05 (540493) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818398)

I am not a lawyer, but reading the course of communications between Jack Thompson and Penny Arcade, it seems to me that while Penny Arcade is certainly not guilty of criminal harassment, Jack Thompson has violated the Florida Bar's standard of ethics for attorneys. He is using his status as an attorney, as an officer of the court, to threaten/bully private citizens with obviously frivolous suits. (You cannot sue someone for merely e-mailing you, unless it was obscene, a death threat, causing severe emotional distress, etc.!) While not rising to the point of a suspendable offense, I believe a public reprimand from the Bar is appropriate and needed.

Cyberstalking (4, Interesting)

_KiTA_ (241027) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818540)

Jack uses a Cyberstalker law in Florida to threaten people who email him. Basically he cussess them out then ends it with "and don't email me back", and when they reply, he says they're harrassing him and to stop or he'll call it Cyberstalking.

Of course, like everything Jacko does, it's never gotten to court. If he actually let it get to a court of law he'd be thrown out forcibly.

Jack got the URL wrong (0, Redundant)

jettoki (894493) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818413)

These idiots have been so careless as to post on their web site what they are doing regarding the harassment of me.

Actually was the website for a "Queer theatre" troupe. []

I guess it's a moot point to jokingly call Jack homophobic. His attacks on Islam have already painted him as cookie-cutter Christian Right.

Re:Jack got the URL wrong (1)

operagost (62405) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818468)

Cookie cutter? Not unless you think every Christian is a belligerent lawyer with an axe to grind.

Re:Jack got the URL wrong (1)

jettoki (894493) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818557)

"The Bible doesn't promote killing innocent people," Thompson said. "Grand Theft Auto does. Islam does. Islam promotes the killing of innocent people. The Quran requires the infidel, whether Jew or Christian, to be killed. ... That's a core essence of the religion. ... Muhammad was a pirate who killed infidels and who advocated the killing of infidels. Not a nice guy. Osama bin Laden is in keeping with his fine tradition."

Okay, Radical Christian Right. Comprised primarily of belligerent lawyers, preachers, and daytime TV hosts with a collective axe to grind. I meant no offense to normal, goodly right-wing Christians.

Huh? (1)

mike.newton (67123) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818419)

Worst. Summary. Ever.

Re:Huh? (1)

Mr.Intel (165870) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818497)

You misspelled 'Evar'.

Oh, this is nice... (1)

Karma_fucker_sucker (898393) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818422)

This latest controversy is part and parcel to a complicated dispute over Thompson's bizarre offer to donate $10K to charity provided that a developer create and distribute a violent game of Thompson's specification in which the victims were industry executives and their families.

What would that prove?

what a jackass.

His Next Suit Will Be... (1)

Evil W1zard (832703) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818423)

Against the motion picture industry when the aliens attack since they released movies like Mars Attacks and Alien which are obviously trainers for how aliens should kill people and take over the earth...

Oh sweet irony prevail and let this man get run over by a delivery truck from EB Games full of violent video games...

Superiority (2, Interesting)

Gadgetfreak (97865) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818425)

It seems that most of his quotes seem to deride the geek community, particularly gamers, as somehow not being as intelligent as he is. I'm not surprised at all that he's gotten this kind of backlash, particularly from a group that typically doesn't like to let an issued a challenge go ignored.

I'm also surprised that he hasn't been more thoroughly bashed by Penny Arcade. I would have expected some sort of Fruit F*cker episode gone wrong.

Re:Superiority (1)

Drey (1420) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818553)

Well, there's always the comic that ran at CAD [] .

Complete sentences please. (1)

Kaz Kylheku (1484) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818434)

The fragments in this Slashdot story are hard to decipher.

The sick thing is... (1)

Caspian (99221) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818437)

...he'll probably win. At least in the first court battle. Consider the current political climate. Not only Republicans, but high-profile Democrats as well (thank you, Hillary Roddham Clinton) are coming down hard against those eeeeeevil video games.

Now, on the other hand, it's good that it's Penny-Arcade being threatened and not, say, some random shmoe with some unknown little Website. Penny-Arcade has enough fame to make this a high-profile case, which means a lot of flak will be generated for Jack Thompson and his defenders, which means that the "good guys" have a fighting chance of winning-- maybe even in the short term, and not the long term. If, instead of picking on Gabe and Tycho, he'd decided to pick on, say, some random video game lover, the "good guys" wouldn't stand a snowball's chance in Hell.

Hypocrite. (2, Insightful)

smose (877816) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818440)

Evidently, Jack believes it to be acceptable to harass video game developers, but sees this as a one-way street.

This is what freedom of speech is all about, Jack. Say what you will. You are free to listen to what others have to say in return. Harassment law ought not prevent you from being hung by your own words.

Ignore the bully? (2, Insightful)

Bollenator (733651) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818445)

On the one hand, I almost feel compelled to call the Seattle PD (local for me) and plead with them not to take any action based on Mr. Thompson's ludicrous and exaggerated claims; on the other hand, I can't imagine anyone taking that man seriously after all the negative press he has been receiving. It's almost as though the more he gets ragged on, the more intense he gets about beating the video games industry into the ground.

I do love Penny Arcade as much as the next guy (perhaps moreso if the next guy doesn't like them :P), but this situation with Jack Thompson reminds me vividly of the classic bully/attention-whore syndrome in elementary school. The more flak people give this guy, especially negative, he's just going to keep coming back for more. You know what would really hurt him? Neglect and disregard. If somehow everyone was able to see what a boisterous gasbag this man is and just learn to ignore everything he barks, he will lose his bite. So for Mike and Jerry, while reading about their antics of antagonizing Mr. Thompson are often hilarious and eye-opening, they may be just making the matter worse for most involved.

In any event, this too shall pass; I just hope it passes before our friends at Penny Arcade get slapped with a real-yet-bogus lawsuit by this litigation-happy doofus.


What a little baby.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13818448)

Cry more n00b!

Hah (4, Funny)

slackmaster2000 (820067) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818453)

Ok, if GTA is a "cop killing training simulator", then what does that say about the compentency of our police force?

I remember a spot in GTA 3 where I could hide under an overpass and the cops would all jump off the top to their deaths...this would continue indefinately and I found it rather amusing. And now that I know that this is what would happen in real life, I'm going on a crime spree rampage during which I'll wipe out the town's entire police force by crouching near an overpass.

This is circular (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13818461)

The more press you give him, the more outrageous and stupid bullshit he pulls. Eventually he will get on The Today Show, Nightline, whatever fucking show has a lot of morons watching and he will say ONLY what he wants to say and try to make everyone believe it. The news agencies see "games kill people" stories as good for ratings so they usually side with whoever is being "killed" and villify the "killers" as much as possible to add hype and excitement.




Not sure its been mentioned here (5, Informative)

Kirran (923838) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818465)

Though I'm sure many following this mess know about it. Jack has also recently recieved a letter from Dr. David Walsh of the National Institute on Media and the Family. In this letter (published on Dr. Walsh distances himself and his organization from Jack. His comments tend to really get to the core of what Jack does, "Your commentary has included extreme hyperbole and your tactics have included personally attacking individuals for whom I have a great deal of respect." He's like a kid on a playground. Someone does something he doesn't like and he starts yelling about getting his daddy to get them, because his daddy is a cop or a lawyer. Only he is the lawyer...

i don't know what to do (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13818466)

jack t. sucks, and so does penny arcade. i'm confused!

Max Payne and Jack Carver Countersue (1)

digitaldc (879047) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818488)

Their training simulators deal with thugs and criminals and they have since countersued for defamation of character.

Let's call the cops on SLASHDOT (1)

Work Account (900793) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818499)

Rob Malda harasses my eyes everytime I read a same-day dupe and fourteen grammar/spelling errors in a three sentence story summary.

I am developing a railgun... (1)

PrimeWaveZ (513534) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818500)

That will shoot ball bearings at things. I am going to use it for hunting, but I'm sure people will use it against police officers and other people not deserving of that fate.

I look forward to Jack Thompson's lawsuit against me and the pinball machine manufacturers for programming children to use my soon-to-come railgun against police officers.

Libel, bannination (disbarment) (5, Interesting)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818517)

Quoth the jackass: "I look forward to working with your fine Police Department to shut this little extortion factory down and/or arrest some of its employees."

Extortion factory? That's not a stated opinion, that's stating a (supposed) fact. Better get your own law team together, because libel's a bitch. I'd like to see how many lawyers it will take to get Jack off.

Because you all need to be protected... (3, Funny)

OgTheBarbarian (778232) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818520)

Jack Thomson is trying to SAVE YOU! Ever since the first Lemming exploded the video game industry has been corrupting your minds. You all clearly lack the ability to discern sliding a CG mock-up car through a crowded bus stop in Carmageddon from real world laws and morals. GTA and Bully will spell the end for all the decent God fearing folk of your great nation! Won't someone please think of the children?!!! *SOB!* *WEEP* *MOAN* What's Next?! GTIB?!!! (Grand Theft Investment Banker) GTE?!!!! (Grand Theft Election) What kind of example would that set for the financial and political leaders of the last bastion of freedom and high-holiness in the world?

Cheap laughs (1)

FishandChips (695645) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818527)

Imho, it's no bad thing for the games industry to have some shots put across its bow. A great deal of exploitation goes on, a great many sharp practices happen since vast sums of money are involved, and anyway no industry is above scrutiny and criticism. There are genuine and valid concerns about the impact of some games on kids, too. Indeed, on games generally if they are played to the point of being a substitute for growing up into a real life. Left to its own devices, could the games industry be trusted to behave for one moment? I doubt it - no other industry can be. Just check out fast food, pharma and smokes.

I don't know anything about Jack Thompson and maybe he is a nutter - but anyone who is subject to this kind of vilification has usually scored a bull's-eye somewhere and, besides, it takes more guts than most of us have to stand up to the plate and say what you believe in when these are the consequences. Try it sometime before scoring cheap laughs off the guy.

When I think of Jack Thompson... (3, Funny)

Chicane-UK (455253) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818530)

..i'm immediately reminded of Walter Peck from Ghost Busters. []

Hopefully when the phoned up the police to ask them to arrest the Penny Arcade guys, the police officer on the phone said "You do your job pencil neck, don't tell me how to do mine!" ;)

If he's aware of the t-shirt..... (4, Insightful)

8127972 (73495) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818531)

....then he (or one of his minions) is aware (or will be aware) of this thread here on Slashdot. Seeing what a over-reacting media whore he seems to be, I suspect that this discussion will be referenced on whatever media outlet he ends up on (likely Fox News, if you want to call what they do journalism) to prove that we "nerds" are a bunch of psychos who are addicted to violent video games and our threats to "run down Jack Thompson with an 18-wheeler" as the AC who posted that comment said will be used as proof of that.

Why not tone down the rhetoric and give him the type of attention he deserves, which is NONE whatsoever?

Well, duh!!!! (0, Flamebait)

Pig Hogger (10379) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818534)

There are a bunch of computer geeks out there who think that the video game industry has a constitutional right to paint a bullseye on your back and on your officers' backs...
Well, chubby, as long as law enforcement officers will act like assholes who think that civilians are an inferior life form, it is only fitting that some people would paint targets on your backs. Maybe one day, the remaining ones will develop brains (you know, natural selection, survival of the fittest, etc...) and will manage to learn to behave less assininely and thus will be acceptable to lowly civilians.

this is like a bad accident (1)

Some_Llama (763766) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818536)

I know it is entertaining to watch, but the more publicity you give this guy, the better it is for him.. just ignore the asshat but put your efforts into undoing his attempts at passing bad legislation with your representatives...

IF we can stop the rubbernecking it will go a long way to getting this guy the recognition he deserves, which is none...

I would be amused (5, Insightful)

Council (514577) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818538)

I always like to ask right-wingers ranting about games and sex causing social decline, "Yeah! I mean, do you know what's happened to rates of violent youth crime and teen pregancny in the last ten years?" They always answer that they're at unprecedented levels, and then are thrown off when I tell them that they've actually been falling quite steadily. Teen pregancy is even at its lowest rate since we began taking statistics in the '40s, down from the all-time high in 1991.

What would be really amusing to me is if they discovered, in 20 years, that untold psychological damage to children was done by The Sims. People spending all day running households like gods, torturing and killing families and developing these horribly twisted personalities. I mean, take a horribly violent, depraved movie -- for example, Saw, and ask what game the creators would probably enjoy playing?

In all seriousness, I think people are both more fragile and more resiliant than they're usually credited with. We handled torturing animals with sticks in the backyard 50 years ago, and we'll handle GTA. And I was going to say something about child-rearing, but then I realized that the last thing anyone wants is more advice on raising kids from a childless twentysomething, so I'll leave it at "the world is probably not coming to an end".

Bad taste on both sides? (2, Insightful)

theSpaceCow (920198) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818550)

Let me be the first to say that Jack Thompson is verifiably batshit loco insane. He has twisted a simple premise (he believes that violent media has a role in violent behavior in some kids and adults, and since there's no sure way to know how these impressionable kids will react, we shouldn't sell it to them) into a media-whoring shouting match the likes of a mentally unstable street preacher. Let me also say that Gabe and Tycho enlighten me and entertain me on nearly a daily basis and I love them to death.

That said, I still think that both sides have handled the situation fairly poorly, as I see it. First off, if Jack really wants to change things, he should have offered his $10,000 toward nonprofit research that proves the positive mental effects of nonviolent games. If you tell the 16-year-olds of the world that being good at Tetris will get them laid, Rockstar would be bankrupt in a week.

On the other hand, I feel the guys at PA have sunk to the same shameful ad hominem depths as their opponent with their "I hate Jack Thompson" shirt. It's their right to sell it, of course, but it shows no class and seeks to profit from causing misery to a specific individual. I happen to think they also should have donated their $10,000 to starving families and dying children, and not the Entertainment Software Association. Sure, it's funny that "Jack Thompson" is sending the ESA a check, but all they're really doing is furthering their own agenda and probably funding lawyers -- I had hoped that out of this debacle people in need would see some benefit, but I guess that's too much to assume.

jezus christ (1)

goarilla (908067) | more than 8 years ago | (#13818552)

this guy is beeing hated more and more doesn't he understand that's not a good thing

i cant believe this since when do we blame entertainment for our actions, since when has society turned his back on own actions and turn to scapegoats?
people have been wearing those nice Copkiller t-shirts for ages and they never have been sued
Why go against the games industry when hollywood itselfs has a more longstanding 'copkilling' reputation
or did u forget movies like goodfellas, reservoir dogs, ... should martin scorcese be put in prison
i dont think so

he deserves prison equally as the developpers at rockstar imho
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