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Judge Clears Bully For Publishing

Hemos posted more than 7 years ago

393

stupid_is writes "The BBC are reporting that Judge Ronald Friedman has cleared Bully for publication in Florida. Jack Thompson is, predictably, critical of the decision, stating "You did not see the game, you don't even know what it was you saw." after Take-Two gave him the game, along with someone to play the game for him to watch before he made a decision." This is a follow-up to our story last week about Take-Two handing over copies of Bully per court order.

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393 comments

Ringbarer Interactive Entertainment 2007 schedule (-1, Troll)

ringbarer (545020) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454061)

Purveyor of racist anti-islamic Slashdot troll postings, Ringbarer, today announced the formation of Ringbarer Interactive Entertainment - providing games for Linux.

"With the recent announcement that Linux is still not ready for the desktop, we thought it was time that Linux users had more games to play than poorly coded Tetris clones, Tux Racer, and that hilarious applet where you stop Bill Gates from installing Windows over Operating Systems that don't exist anymore.

To that end we have created a new dynamic episodic series of franchised Interactive Entertainment Experiences, catered for the Linux demographic. So we'll be forcing the games to be registered and installed online because we know fine well that Linux users would just try to steal them."

But what about the games? The 2007 release catalog promises to have something for all Linux gamers:

SIM NIGGER
Ringbarer Interactive Entertainment's flagship title - SIM NIGGER is a freeform sandbox game containing a miniature representation of New Orleans. The floods may have been drained, but that gives your SIM NIGGER opportunity to indulge in the kind of behaviour that only Niggers know and love. Smoke crack; rob tourists at gunpoint; do drive by shootings; eat stolen watermelon; loot televisions; acquire 'bling'; anally rape children; spout incomprehensible gibberish into your (stolen) mobile phone; draw welfare checks; and all that other wholesome stuff. Only with SIM NIGGER can pasty white overprivledged middle-class suburban teenagers express their dislike for Mommy and Daddy by adopting a culture that was never theirs in the first place. Featuring a meticulously marketed 'Urban' soundtrack from Eminem, Fiddy Cent, and Vanilla Ice.

Contains inbuilt advertising from Massive Entertainment who shall plaster every available in game billboard with the same picture, whilst claiming it makes the game more 'realistic', because you're stupid enough to fall for that thing.

ESRB WARNING: Contains hidden scenes of consentual fucking available by manually patching the game to include a DivX viewer and several separately downloaded gigabytes of pornography.

SPACE MARINE XENOMORPH BUGHUNT 4 - EPISODE 1
Exciting and revolutionary FPS from the makers of SPACE MARINE XENOMORPH BUGHUNT 3. Control a tough talking American Space Marine through several levels of tense, pulse-pounding point-and-click action. Listen to poorly written contrived banter which was considered embarassing when James Cameron first wrote it twenty years ago. Fight ever larger and fatter aliens which are so ludicrous that even Todd McFarlane would wipe his ass on the sketchpad if he ever drew one. Contains the terrifying "Industrial Factory" level, as well as "Sewers", "Crate Warehouse", and "Industrial Factory 2", leading to an exciting plotline cliffhanger to be resolved in SPACE MARINE XENOMORPH BUGHUNT 4 - EPISODE 2.

SPACE MARINE XENOMORPH BUGHUNT 4 - EPISODE 2
This picks up the exiting plotline cliffhanger from SPACE MARINE XENOMORPH BUGHUNT 4 - EPISODE 1. Your tough talking American Space Marine has now been turned into an Alien or something. And you get to fight through all the same levels again, except there's a purple glow on things because you're an Alien or something and you've got slightly stranger powers. And a gravity gun.

SPACE MARINE XENOMORPH BUGHUNT 4 - HIGHSCHOOL HOLOCAUST MAP PACK
We have been working diligently with the modding community to provide an exclusive Map Pack for SPACE MARINE XENOMORPH BUGHUNT 4. These maps contain pixel-perfect replicas of every High School in the United States and Canada, so that Linux gamers may indulge their angry loner stereotype with a variety of virtual weapons.

SERIOUS FLIGHT SIMULATOR 2007
Decades have work have gone into the latest edition of SERIOUS FLIGHT SIMULATOR, utilising the best in scientific physics analysis, realistic fractal terrain generation, and a flight model second only to the best that the military have to offer. All of which will go to waste because the only thing Linux gamers would want to do with it is download a 3D model of New York City circa 2001 and crash a plane into the World Trade Centre, whilst laughing nasally that they're "teaching Bush a lesson".

SPHINCTER SMELL
Somebody has farted in the NSA offices, and it's up to special operative Sam Felcher to find out who it was! Stalk and sneak your way around the poorly lit bathrooms and ventilation ducts of NSA headquarters, until you get close enough to your target to be able to nasally inhale their anal emissions.

LEMON PARTY
Like 'Mario Party' but with slightly more geriatric homosexuality.

GOATSE GOBBLIN'
Control a full-bearded man dressed in nothing but his underwear across many infurating platform levels, just for the chance to eat some distended anus.

WH3RE DA FUCK IZ CARMEN SANTIAGO?
The popular education title, updated for the Urban demographic.

LYNNDIE ENGLAND'S ABU-GHRAIB TETRIS
Of course, any collection of Linux games would not be complete without a poorly coded Tetris clone! LYNNDIE ENGLAND'S ABU-GHRAIB TETRIS is an exciting and politically savvy rework of the public domain puzzle concept. The barely conscious bodies of tortured Iraqi prisoners are falling from the top of the screen, and it's your job to stack them into amusing pyramids for the benefit of the folks at home. That'll serve 'em right for 9/11!

Many more titles are to be announced. So stay tuned to experience the future of Linux gaming!

Want to buy it (0, Troll)

with_him (815684) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454063)

For those who may not have heard of the this game before all the publicity and now as consenting adults want to buy it.

http://www.amazon.com/Rockstar-Games-P2T2I-7104252 78075-Bully/dp/B0009SQF0C/sr=8-1/qid=1161015985/re f=pd_bbs_sr_1/002-8746263-8476050?ie=UTF8 [amazon.com]

I love it (1)

with_him (815684) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454427)

I honestly had not heard of the game until this story and now I honestly comtemplating buying the game. Honest perspective here is treated with Troll and Overrated moderation. Seems like I have better Karma when I keep my thoughts to myself.

Re:I love it (4, Funny)

krakelohm (830589) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454611)

Honestly?

No, really? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16454869)

Well, if you want the HONEST truth, you most likely got modded Troll because of the Amazon referral link. Kind of sleazy.

Although the Slashdot conspiracy against you is most likely true as well...

First amendment. (2, Insightful)

Pig Hogger (10379) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454069)

Why would a judge be asked to condone prior restraint, and expected to do it???

Just how long (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16454415)

will it be till we see a mod so that players can bully Jack Thompson, eh? :)

good comment (5, Insightful)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454081)

"There's a lot of violence," Judge Friedman said. "A whole lot. Less than we see on television every night."

It's nice to see that a judge is actually comparing this to the other media that we're exposed to out here in the real world.

Re:good comment (2, Insightful)

hal2814 (725639) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454369)

"It's nice to see that a judge is actually comparing this to the other media that we're exposed to out here in the real world."

I'm not so sure. Such an argument seems to imply that if the violence were worse than what you'd see on TV, there would be some grounds to have this game forcibly prevented from sales. So while I do agree with the judge's statement, I find it a very dangerous thing to be including such a statement in defense of the game from a legal standpoint.

Re:good comment (4, Informative)

EmperorKagato (689705) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454469)

"I'm not so sure. Such an argument seems to imply that if the violence were worse than what you'd see on TV, there would be some grounds to have this game forcibly prevented from sales. So while I do agree with the judge's statement, I find it a very dangerous thing to be including such a statement in defense of the game from a legal standpoint."

If you remove Bully from publishing, you would also have to take every TV/MA TV/T show off the air.
I find the judge's defense is sound: The judge basically identified that the level of violence in this game is already approved by society.

Let's also not forget children cannot buy this game on their own nor rent it as well as parents still have the right to pre-view before purchase.

Re:good comment (4, Informative)

BlueCodeWarrior (638065) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454629)

Children can buy or own the game. Game ratings are a reccomendation, not enforced by law.

Re:good comment (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16454837)

That's right - not enforced by law. Enforced by Wal-Mart.

Re:good comment (3, Insightful)

Cyno01 (573917) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454841)

But every damn retailer follows them because otherwise people like Jack Thompson would have their balls. Movie ratings are also voluntary.

Re:good comment (1)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454471)

Well, I suspect that this is his way of applying the "community standards of decency" (which can be used at a local level to prohibit the sale of "offensive" materials") to the game. Since everybody in his jurisdiction is exposed to far greater levels of violence on TV on a routine basis, any attempts to prohibit the game's sale due to the amount of violence contained in it will be futile.

Re:good comment (2, Insightful)

endemoniada (744727) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454485)

But you have to compare it to something, otherwise you couldn't set any limits at all.

In my opinion, having guns at home, at work, in shopping malls and now even in you classrooms (since apparently even teachers are supposed to carry guns now) is a much greater risk than videogames. Add to that the violence everyday on TV, and you get a society that's just waiting to tear itself apart in fear of itself.

Long story short, Jack Thompson is an egotistic fuckhead who cares nothing for the children. If he did, he'd get rid of guns and actually do something about the physical violence not connected to videogames.

Re:good comment (0, Troll)

EdipisReks (770738) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454743)

Go back to Leningrad, Stalin. Don't you have a five year plan, or something, to do?

Re:good comment (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16454915)

In my opinion, having guns at home, at work, in shopping malls and now even in you classrooms (since apparently even teachers are supposed to carry guns now) is a much greater risk than videogames.
In my opinion, shared by our founding fathers, not having guns is quite a bit worse.

Re:good comment (5, Insightful)

tkrotchko (124118) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454881)

No, it's bad.

It's not a judge's job to put his own personal feelings into the matter.

It's wrong on a lot of levels:

1) The judge should have said "I don't rule on video game violence"
2) He should have said "I am not qualified to look at a game to decide what is okay"
3) It's not his job to look at a game at decide if it's "Okay" for the rest of the public to play.

What's next? People can ask a judge if TV show is okay? A magazine? A book?

Where does this power stem from to rule on the contents of video games? I've never heard of it before.

This is beyond a slippery slope; it's a cliff. Look, I get that this Jack guy doesn't like video games and violence. Great. Fine. He should be allowed to campaign against them. Free speech works both ways. But that doesn't mean anyone has to take this guy seriously. The judge actually took this guy seriously for a week. That should bother everyone. I'm not commenting on whether Jack has a point; I'm simply questioning this judge putting himself in a position to judge.

Re:good comment (2, Informative)

John Betonschaar (178617) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454883)

It's nice to see that a judge is actually comparing this to the other media that we're exposed to out here in the real world.

True, but OTOH, he might just as well have compared it with one of the 100s of other games already on the market, that have so much more violence in it. It's actually pretty rediculous if you think of it, that a judge even has to decide on this. I mean, you cannot even kill people in this game IIRC. Games like Postal, Hitman, GTA, etc. etc. etc, they're already here, and there's much more realistic violence in them.

The game has become controversial because it's title might give the impression it's about bullying people, but that's just not true, which you'll find out when you actually play the game. A member of parliament over here actually literally said in an interview the game should be banned 'because it rewards bully behaviour'. The fact that his comments were taken seriously by other members is quite disturbing, considering the fact that probably none of these people even saw the game and still formed an opinion on it. If you read reviews of it, you'll find that the game actually *punishes* you for bullying, and rewards you for following classes and gaining respect by doing 'the right thing' (tm).

GNAA FP (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16454083)

FUCK THOSE NIGGERS! GO BACK TO AFRICA!

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You did not see that game... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16454095)

...you don't even know what you saw?

Does that make any sense to anyone?

Re:You did not see that game... (3, Insightful)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454251)

...you don't even know what you saw?

Thompson seems to be implying that the judge is some kind of idiot who was completely unable to interpret what he saw happening on the screen while someone else, knowledgeable in the game, was playing it for him.

Now, I've never seen the game. But based on what games I have seen/played, I can't imagine that anyone with an above-room-temperature IQ and a heartbeat would be unable to interpret what's happening on the screen. I mean, games these days have fairly realistic 3D graphics; it's like implying that one can't figure out what's going on on the screen because it's anime.

Re:You did not see that game... (2, Interesting)

Dan East (318230) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454395)

You're taking it out of context. From the next sentence in the article, "Mr Thompson criticised the decision to have an employee take him through the game, arguing he could have avoided making violent choices."

In other words, since it was a pre-release version, and since the judge was only shown what the Take-Two employee decided to demonstrate for him, it's hard to tell what the judge actually saw. I can't even count how many games can be played in a much less violent way if so desired (like not using fatalites in Mortal Combat, or not doing head shots in TFC, etc). Entire areas of the map could also be avoided (like fighting inside of shcools).

Dan East

Re:You did not see that game... (1)

EmperorKagato (689705) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454521)

The game has already been reviewed by the ESRB which they have already taken extra measures to ensure a justified rating.

Re:You did not see that game... (5, Insightful)

rkcallaghan (858110) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454637)

Dan East wrote:
You're taking it out of context. From the next sentence in the article, "Mr Thompson criticised the decision to have an employee take him through the game, arguing he could have avoided making violent choices."
In other words, since it was a pre-release version, and since the judge was only shown what the Take-Two employee decided to demonstrate for him, it's hard to tell what the judge actually saw. I can't even count how many games can be played in a much less violent way if so desired (like not using fatalites in Mortal Combat, or not doing head shots in TFC, etc). Entire areas of the map could also be avoided (like fighting inside of shcools).
This case involves Jack Thompson and a judge that thus far has demonstrated his ability to act fairly. Despite Jack's reputation himself as an annoyance, the Judge agreed to actually look at the game before making a decision. Then, upon seeing it, he drew parallels to existing societal norms. So far these are the actions of a rational man; and they're just what we know from a news article.

I know what happens when you assume, but in this case I am going to go out on a limb here and suggest that if Judge Friedman felt he was being decieved, he would have stated so. If I may as well, I'll take the leap that if Jack felt Judge Friedman was being decieved, he would have no problems fufilling his obligation to the court to say so. In short, with lack of evidence to the contrary, and no history of foolish behavior in this case on the part of Judge Friedman -- I am going say that Judge Friedman did his job, and its judicial armchair quarterbacking on your part to think otherwise because a news article did not detail every step of the trial to your satisfaction.

~Rebecca (IANAL, but damn this is my second law related post today)

Re:You did not see that game... (1)

Turn-X Alphonse (789240) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454867)

MK is a funny old game though. Try playing the original trilogy these days.. the violence is hillariously B-movie.. yet we had all that screaming over it.. but that's off topic.

If I was the guy sent to play the game I would ask the judge to tell me what to do. I'd be his hands in effect. That way the judge can see anything he likes and I just have to perform it. I see no other reason to pull this off and make the judge feel he saw everything he needed.

Re:You did not see that game... (0)

Cpt_Kirks (37296) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454281)

Jack never makes a hell of a lot of sense. I've seen him on TV practically drooling.

I think the poor guy really needs his meds adjusted.

Thompson said what? (3, Interesting)

iainl (136759) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454097)

Don't lawyers normally get into some sort of trouble for calling Judges incompetent twats who don't know how to do their job?

Re:Thompson said what? (4, Interesting)

nuzak (959558) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454233)

Jack Thompson is special. He's found that if the Florida Bar takes disciplinary action against him, he can simply sue them and they'll roll over onto their backs, whimper, and pay him twenty grand or so.

I suspect he can be disbarred in any state where he practices pro hac vice, but I doubt other states bars will even want to hear it. And this case was in Florida anyway.

Re:Thompson said what? (1)

Kierthos (225954) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454371)

Yeah, it should be a contempt of court charge, at the very least.

Re:Thompson said what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16454585)

That's not contempt of court, it's merely out of order. If he said it again in court in violation of an order to conduct himself appropriately, that would be contempt. Could get him disciplined by the states bar association, but we all know how unlikely that is.

Re:Thompson said what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16454691)

Meh... I hate Thompson, but he should be able to express his opinion on a ruling. IMO, too many judges are over zealous, power tripping asshats.

Y'know... (1)

Cleon (471197) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454099)

I'm half-tempted to buy a bunch of them and give them out to 12-year-old kids just to piss off that obnoxious, self-righteous, arrogant, schmuck Thompson.

Can I send my cousin over to your house? (1)

with_him (815684) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454175)

Then I won't have to buy one for him. I am sure that it would make his parents made if that helps your decision.

Re:Y'know... (1, Redundant)

ctid (449118) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454333)

Since the game has a Teen rating in the USA and a 15 rating here in Europe, I think that buying a copy and giving it to a twelve year-old would only be helping Mr Thompson's case!

Re:Y'know... (1)

SScorpio (595836) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454789)

Yes, because a Teen rating is "suitable for ages 13+" and you know how the maturity ratings of children change so rapidly in a year. This is just like letting a 12 year old in to see a PG-13 movie.

So.. (4, Interesting)

dr_dank (472072) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454135)

''You did not see the game,'' Mr Thompson told the judge at Friday's hearing. "You don't even know what it was you saw."

Unless I missed something, Thompson hasn't seen the game since it's unreleased and is criticising the judge who did see it. Amazing.

I'm starting to think that this guy is a clever guerilla marketer who brings attention and boosted sales to his clients via the media and legal system. Just look how well 2 Live Crew sold records after a protracted legal battle waged by Jack Thompson.

Re:So.. (1)

coolgeek (140561) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454391)

I agree dr_dank. I think Jack is pulling a few pages from John Dvorak's playbook.

Re:So.. (4, Interesting)

DangerSteel (749051) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454425)

I think you may be onto something. It would be brilliant to hire him to "fight" your game in court with obviously losing strategies like he has been applying. How much would that be worth to a company?

Re:So.. (0, Redundant)

Fly (18255) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454737)

I think you are ignoring the point. The point Mr. Thompson is making is that there is a possible conflict of interest for the person who played the game for the court. The court wants to know what a typical game experience would be like to know whether it would incite angsty teenagers or angsty twenty-somethings to violence. The person playing the game does not share the motivation, and in fact that person is motivated to show that the game is not too violent. The person demonstrating the game has the power to influence what the evidence will be be for the court.

Re:So.. (1)

MorderVonAllem (931645) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454747)

"I'm starting to think that this guy is a clever guerilla marketer who brings attention and boosted sales to his clients via the media and legal system. Just look how well 2 Live Crew sold records after a protracted legal battle waged by Jack Thompson."

www.World 1-1.tv did this as their opening show. The last line was "this message brought to you by jack thompson media, a division of rockstar games"

i'm glad to see more people connecting the two...

Jack Thompson needs to learn a lesson here. (1)

Pizentios (772582) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454141)

Jack Thompson needs to settle down. We are getting tired of his constant law suits, which almost seem to be monthly at this point. When is he going to realize, we don't care and that people will buy the game off the net even if he got it baned from his state. Personally if i was the judge, after his remarks i would have thrown him in jail.

Re:Jack Thompson needs to learn a lesson here. (1)

Enoxice (993945) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454223)

I'm not tired of his crazy antics. They are a constant stream of entertainment. Watching him is practically better than playing video games!

Re:Jack Thompson needs to learn a lesson here. (1)

Ant P. (974313) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454705)

I'd want him locked away, just out of pity for the people who have to put up with him directly.

Re:Jack Thompson needs to learn a lesson here. (2, Interesting)

soft_guy (534437) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454273)

Fred Phelps (the "God hates fags" guy) behaved in a very similar manner to Jack Thompson over a long period of time. Eventually he was disbarred. Jack Thompson will probably get himself disbarred eventually.

Re:Jack Thompson needs to learn a lesson here. (1)

nuzak (959558) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454449)

Phelps's behavior was and is several orders of magnitude more brazen and outlandish than Thompson's ... though I must say, even though he's not the living picture of restraint, Thompson's little bit about the video game depicting the murder of Take Two's CEO would indicate that he's lost a little bit more of his sanity recently.

Almost all of Phelp's entire family is lawyers who act the same way in and out of the courtroom, and they all continue to practice with the exception of Freddie himself. As far as I know, Thompson acts alone. I'm sure he has his supporters, but none quite so monomaniacal.

Re:Jack Thompson needs to learn a lesson here. (1)

Phisbut (761268) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454587)

Fred Phelps (the "God hates fags" guy) behaved in a very similar manner to Jack Thompson over a long period of time. Eventually he was disbarred. Jack Thompson will probably get himself disbarred eventually.

What freightens me though is, how long will it take to have him disbarred? Are the standards so low that he actually needs to tell a judge to fuck off 42 times before he gets punished? I am far from very knowledgeable about law stuff, but from a lay man point of view, seeing a lawyer ridicule the justice systems like he does and not being disciplined, that's pretty amazing.

Re:Jack Thompson needs to learn a lesson here. (2, Funny)

Turken (139591) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454499)

which almost seem to be monthly at this point.


Ahhh... so THAT explains it! Someone get the man some Midol!

Re:Jack Thompson needs to learn a lesson here. (1)

jspectre (102549) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454773)

sorry, but this is the good old u.s.a. where the rich get richer, the poor get poorer and everyone has the right to sue thy neighbor.

do you know how many completely frivilous lawsuits are brought to court every day? as long as you're willing to pay your lawyer and court fees you can sue anyone for anything. and if you lose, you might have to pay for their lawyer too. but nothing is going to stop this money making scheme, it pays the lawyers their hefty salaries and the salaries of the courts too.

the game isnt the problem (2, Interesting)

192939495969798999 (58312) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454159)

if your kid is playing the game, then that's at least X minutes he or she isn't out actually bullying kids. How about taking some measures against actual bullies, instead of just going "boys will be boys" when Jerk Junior beats up yet another kid for lunch money, or kicks yet another puppy, or lights yet another cigarette at age 9? I'd be more concerned about the kid who shows up at 9 am on a school day to buy the game...

Re:the game isnt the problem (4, Interesting)

Frymaster (171343) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454327)

if your kid is playing the game, then that's at least X minutes he or she isn't out actually bullying kids

well, i doubt real bullies would play this game anyways, since the objective is defeat bullies, not be one.

if anything, the game has the potential to have a strong message of empowerment for all those kids who spend recess stuffed into lockers.

Way to go JT. (3, Funny)

Endo13 (1000782) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454167)

Now you've got both feet stuck in your mouth. Let's see if you can fit anything else in there.

Anamotical distortions (5, Funny)

tygt (792974) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454263)

We already know he's got his head up his ass, so with his feet stuck in his mouth, which is part of his head, which is up his ass..... damn, that's getting right convoluted!

Re:Way to go JT. (5, Funny)

Tackhead (54550) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454297)

> Now you've got both feet stuck in your mouth. Let's see if you can fit anything else in there.

Q: What do you get when you cross Ouroborous with a Klein Bottle?
A: Jack Thompson, the only man who can simultaneously put his feet in his mouth when he's already got his head up his ass.

Re:Way to go JT. (1)

tulmad (25666) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454309)

I'm just amazed he can get both feet in his mouth when his head is stuck so far up his butt.

Free Will (2, Insightful)

Nalanthi (599605) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454171)

Mr Thompson criticised the decision to have an employee take him through the game, arguing he could have avoided making violent choices.

If a game in which someone can make choices to make the game less violent and has defending other kids as a key game play element actually exists how is this a bad thing. Its Art/storytelling and a slap-dash of decent morality. Free will is important. Choices between good and evil in a game allow people to explore these choices without real world impact.

Re:Free Will (1)

iainl (136759) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454259)

It's also possible to make it through most of the GTA games with minimal 'civilian' casualties. That little fact fails to stop Thompson insisting that they're rape and murder simulators, simply because the game carries on working when his sick little depraved mind continues to play out his own violent fantasies.

Re:Free Will (2, Insightful)

endemoniada (744727) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454537)

You have to admit though, the game does very little to promote peaceful solutions to its problems and obstacles, and very much to insinuate that you use violence. How about the assassination-missions in Vice City? How do you kill someone without violence?

Trust me, I think JT is a major dumbass just like everyone else, but to say that a game like GTA does NOT promote violence is actually stretching it a bit :)

Re:Free Will (5, Funny)

Doctor Memory (6336) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454455)

Thompson's criticism also presumes that the judge merely sat passively and watched. Who's to say he wasn't sitting there telling the player "Hey, that kid with the glasses! Punch him! Again! Kick him! Take his lunch money! YEAAAH!"

Re:Free Will (2, Interesting)

businessnerd (1009815) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454643)

The problem here, and also the problem in a lot of other cases where people tyr to ban games/movies, is that those who are demonizing these games, have no idea of what they are actually about. From what I have read about "Bully", the game is about making choices, not about murdering your classmates. The player is confronted with many common schoolyard situations and has to make the choice to either take the high road, or the low road. Furthermore, if one does take the low road and decide to harm his/her peers, bad things will follow. You are punished, people think you're a dick and don't want to be your friend, etc. Does this sound familiar? Possibly to what happens in real life? Given, the audience here at slashdot, I'm sure many of us were picked on by bullies during school. Where are we now, and where are the bullies? In my situation, I have a well paying job and a college degree from a well respected university, and one of my bullies is barely a high school graduate working at a supermarket and going nowhere. I think this game reflects this pretty well, from what I've been told. Also, Thompson claims this game is a "Columbine Simulator" yet I remember reading that there are NO GUNS featured in the game. The closest thing is a bat.

Addressing the bigger picture, we often see this with movies time and time again. Some titles that come to mind that were very controversial BEFORE being released: "Bubble Boy"(don't make fun of immune deficiacy people), "Saved" (don't let people know how self-righteous and hypocritical fund. christians are), "The Ringer" (don't make fun of the special olympics) and the list goes on. All of which were chastized for one reason or another, because they allegedly made fun of a group of one group or the other. Most of these groups were going off of previews and had not actually seen the movies, or talked to anyone involved in it like a director to find out exactly where this movie goes with the controversial topic. How can one disagree with a movie you have not seen!!!!!!!??????

A similar story I saw on Digg was that a man wants to ban "Fahrenheit 451" (yes that's right the book by Ray Bradbury about book burning) from his Texas school distric because his daughter told him that there was foul language and innappropriate material. He confirmed his daughter's claims not by reading the book himself (oh no heaven forbid), but rather by thumbing through the pages to the parts that had the innappropriate material outside of their context. Just for that reason I decided to pick up the book and start reading it. Honestly, although I'm only about halfway through, I have not found anything in the least bit offensive, in or out of context (although i'm hoping for a steamy sex scene in the second half of the book).

Nice... (-1, Offtopic)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454189)

I have this story still pending from when I typed it in on Saturday morning.

Re:Nice... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16454665)

I have this story still pending from when I typed it in on Saturday morning.

Why do you care? The story got posted, stop whining that it wasn't yours. And why should *we* care?

choice quote (1)

Scrameustache (459504) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454197)

Mr Thompson criticised the decision to have an employee take him through the game, arguing he could have avoided making violent choices.

So, he's arguing the game is a public nuisance because you can choose non-violent solutions?

That guy is really an insane jackass.

Re:choice quote (0, Redundant)

k_187 (61692) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454229)

No, he's saying the employee would be biased.

Re:choice quote (1)

Scrameustache (459504) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454355)

So, he's arguing the game is a public nuisance because you can choose non-violent solutions?
No, he's saying the employee would be biased.

So the game would be a public nuisance because the employee would be biased, then?
Riiiiight. Sure.

Sigh. He's saying the employee would be biased? DUH!
Wow, your reply sure is super extra insightfull and not at all a useless stating of the obvious completely missing the point of what you replied to! /sarcasm

Thompson is trying to get the game banned on the insane notion that videogames hypnotises kids and turns them into mindless killers unable to refrain from acting out the violent acts the game conditioned them to emulate.
That can't be if the game allows you to choose the peace&love way, then the kids would have to be concious entities making choices of their own free will.

Re:choice quote (1)

k_187 (61692) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454439)

No, he isn't able to illustrate that it would be a public nuisance because the employee would be biased.

Re:choice quote (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16454379)

It occurs to me that a child playing with a Barney toy can make some pretty violent choices. (It's a friggin' dinosaur!)

Re:choice quote (1)

Atheose (932144) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454503)

"Mr Thompson criticised the decision to have an employee take him through the game, arguing he could have avoided making violent choices."

I can make violent decisions or choose to avoid making violent choices in REAL life, so should we ban real life as well?

Re:choice quote (1)

Scrameustache (459504) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454799)

should we ban real life as well?

It's certainly unsuitable for children; mandatory sterilisation for all! ;-)

I just don't know anymore... (3, Insightful)

CUatTHEFINISH (970078) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454213)

I'm tired of hearing, "Ban this video game!" "Sue that company." "OMZFG HOT COFFEE?!?!" A video game is a video game. The ESRB does a fairly decent job in giving them good ratings. They have no control over what users can do to alter the game. It's just a simple fact of what the parents allow the children to play. If the children can understand it's just a video game, you can't auto-aim in real life, etc., then I really don't see what the problem is. Maybe I'm just giving common sense the benefit of the doubt, but I think these stories are absolutely ridiculous. Virtual Reality is meant for people to get away from their everyday lives. It's not even in the slightest meant to be a model for real life actions. I guess this topic just grinds my gears.

Technicality (2, Insightful)

Alchemar (720449) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454547)

You made the point that "Virtual Reality is meant for people to get away from their everyday lives. It's not even in the slightest meant to be a model for real life actions."

Virtual Reality is by definition a model for real life actions. Video games are meant for people to get away from their everyday lives. There are Virtual Reality simulators which are fully intened to teach people how to kill, most of them in use by the US goverment. Video games still strive for realism in some way. What makes them fun is where they deviate from reality, video games let you do things that you wouldn't be able to do in real life.

Yes - the grenades blow up and have realistic shrapnal due to the new physics processor.
No - that does not mean we are really being invaded by an alien lifeform.

Yes - you can see the new hat on your character when you equip it
No - putting a hat on does not suddenly give you the real ability to cast fireball

Re:Technicality (1)

CUatTHEFINISH (970078) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454669)

Touché. You got me there if you want to use the technical definition of "Virtual Reality." But I'm also sure you have an idea of where I'm coming from, even if I did not word it 100% correctly. Curse that Webster and his definitions *shakes fist*. -_-

Re:Technicality (2, Funny)

bunions (970377) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454707)

> Yes - you can see the new hat on your character when you equip it
> No - putting a hat on does not suddenly give you the real ability to cast fireball

Well, crap, why the hell am I wearing this thing then?

Re:I just don't know anymore... (4, Insightful)

tdc_vga (787793) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454733)

I wish people would read: http://www.lectlaw.com/files/cur78.htm [lectlaw.com] (or one of another billions sources or the actual case files) before always mentioning "the coffee case." I am studying to be a lawyer and 9 out of 10 people who reference a case have never read the case, the facts, or otherwise, but still are "horrified" at the results. I was speaking with a Federal Judge yesturday and he told me how people constantly come up to him and call him and activist judge for his decision in XYZ case, but when asked if they've read the case they more than 90% of the time will say no, but they heard about it on the news.

I know this is Slashdot and no one reads that article, but please at least read the points of your post(s), because you only spread more FUD or at the very least misinformation.

Cheers,
    TdC

Re:I just don't know anymore... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16454825)

Maybe you should take some of your own advice and make sure you know what you are talking about before commenting. "Hot coffee" that people are talking about here refers to a mod for Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. It has nothing to do with the McDonalds case.

Ever thought of this, Judge? (1)

krell (896769) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454255)

"If you don't like it, don't play it". Keep this in mind and laugh the frivolous lawsuits out of the courtroom, please.

In case of Bully v. Bully FL Judge finds for Bully (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16454261)

I'd love to see that headine in a gaming magazine.

Old news (2, Informative)

theaddkid.com (983011) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454267)

I am sorry if I am wrong but wasn't this covered some 217 years ago........ "Madison's version of the speech and press clauses, introduced in the House of Representatives on June 8, 1789, provided: ''The people shall not be deprived or abridged of their right to speak, to write, or to publish their sentiments; and the freedom of the press, as one of the great bulwarks of liberty, shall be inviolable.''1 The special committee rewrote the language to some extent, adding other provisions from Madison's draft, to make it read: ''The freedom of speech and of the press, and the right of the people peaceably to assemble and consult for their common good, and to apply to the Government for redress of grievances, shall not be infringed.''2 In this form it went to the Senate, which rewrote it to read: ''That Congress shall make no law abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble and consult for their common good, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.''3 Subsequently, the religion clauses and these clauses were combined by the Senate.4 The final language was agreed upon in conference." Or does this not apply to forums of speech that some people don't like.

Interesting (4, Insightful)

Bombula (670389) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454319)

This Bully issue is interesting because it highlights the salient point so often missed by those who criticise violence in entertainment: context. To a thinking person, it is obvious that entertainment involving beating a schoolmate bloody with a bat is more disturbing than entertainment involving a bodybuilder blowing up aliens with a bazooka, despite the fact that - objectively at least - murder is worse than assault. The context being so much closer to home - a kid with a bat is much nearer to actual reality than a bodybuilder blowing up aliens - is where the disturbance factor comes in, and it's pretty much impossible to quantify closeness-to-home realism which makes it a challenge for the courts.

Re:Interesting (1)

poot_rootbeer (188613) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454889)

To a thinking person, it is obvious that entertainment involving beating a schoolmate bloody with a bat is more disturbing than entertainment involving a bodybuilder blowing up aliens with a bazooka

Yeah? This "thinking person" takes exception to your statement that one form of fictional entertainment is "obvious"ly more disturbing than another.

Show, don't tell. If you have empirical proof suggesting one is more disturbing, please share it. But don't belittle those of us who draw different conclusions than you do.

Must be running for president... (2, Insightful)

creimer (824291) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454321)

Mr Thompson told Miami newspapers that he did not plan to continue his campaign against Bully.

After he gets his 15 minutes of national media to rant against violent video games, he's not going to continue his campaign against this "Columbine simulator" that will undoubtly increase school violence?

Re:Must be running for president... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16454655)

Here's a scary thought: What if he is planning to run for some sort of public office? So far he's been the crusader against violent games that turns our kids into remorseless killing machines. You slap that on a campaign poster, you are going to get a lot of votes from the "family values" voters.

It doesn't even matter that he really hasn't made much of an impact. It's the press coverage we've seen so far. There's enough evidence for an average joe to do a simple google search to see that Jack Thompson has indeed stood against the "evil" game developers.

Regardless of how big the ego of the slashdot crowd have, we don't quite cover a significant amount of the registered voter populations. The ones that vote on family values and conservative ideals are a lot more likely to win elections(especially in Florida), and that is exactly the crowd Jack Thompson is playing his tunes to.

I sincerely hope that I am just being paranoid.

Is this coming out on Xbox? (1)

mei_mei_mei (890405) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454339)

I'd never heard of the game before these lawsuits but now I MUST have it. Anyone know if it'll be out on Xbox? Some sites say it's been cancelled. May hev to finally buy a PS2 :-(

All work and no play... (1)

endemoniada (744727) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454377)

Seriously, now he's not only telling parents they no longer are responsible for parenting, but he's even going up against a judge saying he doesn't know how to do his job!

Someone need to slip dear ol' Jack a chillpill before his head explodes. On the other hand... If it does explode, we can continue blaming lawyers for all that's wrong in this world while having proof: The heads of lawyers are prone to spontanious explosion! Keep all children at a safe distance!

Idea toshut up Jack Thompson (1)

gorehog (534288) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454463)

How about someone actually produces a Columbine Simulator? And trademarks the name, and then sues Thompson for trademark infringement?

It could prolly be a build on fy_office....

Re:Idea toshut up Jack Thompson (1)

businessnerd (1009815) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454715)

unfortunately, I think Jack's got prior art :(

The best part will be... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16454501)

...when JT turns around and claims that after some high-profile bullying incident that clearly the game was at fault. Because obviously, nobody ever bullied anyone before this game came out.

Re:The best part will be... (1)

endemoniada (744727) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454569)

The best part will be when he realizes his mistake, and starts rightfully blaming the parents for not doing their god-damn job.

Re:The best part will be... (1)

B3ryllium (571199) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454681)

I'm sad to say, you live in more of a dream world than he does. Heh. :) "Realizes his mistake", that's a good one. :)

Well how about that? (1)

Weaselmancer (533834) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454619)

Finally, judges being clueless about software played into our hands for once. He probably took those two disks home and put them in his toaster.

Incorrect Headline (4, Insightful)

ewhac (5844) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454635)

If any are watching, I wish to request of the editors that the headline to this article be changed.

Despite the fervent wishes of certain unbalanced extremists, prior restraint in publishing is not recognized in US law, except in cases of national security, and only then when circumstances are extraordinary. Right to publish is automatic. Thus, the Judge did not "clear" anything for publishing, as judges do not have that right in this country.

A less misleading headline might be, "Judge Refuses to Block Publication of 'Bully'", or, "No Reason to Block Take-Two's 'Bully', says Judge", or,"Take-Two's 'Bully' No Threat to National Security".

Schwab

MOD PARENT UP (1)

ThatsNotFunny (775189) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454935)

There's a big difference between Publishing and Distributing...

This is great news comrades! (4, Funny)

Hamster Lover (558288) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454675)

The glorius courts of the Motherland have done their work and examined the game in question and approved it for the new communist man. In response, the Central Committee has increased the vodka ration to two bottles a month in celebration of this great triumph! Once again the Motherland supports your right to freedom by ensuring that only the best books, magazines, movies and games are available to the mindless sheep tireless workers of the revolution.

Re:This is great news comrades! (1)

singingjim (957822) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454831)

This wouldn't even be an issue if Wacko Jacko wasn't such a putz. You don't see a huge groundswell of support for this man. Just a few likeminded loonies.

In typical fascist style... (1)

singingjim (957822) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454735)

Wacko Jacko is probably the one who hasn't even seen the game. Like a religious loony will criticize a TV or radio program without every seeing or hearing it.

"avoided making violent choices." (2, Insightful)

future assassin (639396) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454765)

''You did not see the game,'' Mr Thompson told the judge at Friday's hearing. "You don't even know what it was you saw." Mr Thompson criticised the decision to have an employee take him through the game, arguing he could have avoided making violent choices.

Isn't this a good thing? At least the player has a choice and not like tv/movies where you have to watch gore all the way through (unless you can make yourself to pick up the remote) . At the end of the day its parents responisbility to monitor what they buy their children and what their children do.

Avoid making violent choices. (4, Insightful)

icejai (214906) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454827)

Mr Thompson criticised the decision to have an employee take him through the game, arguing he could have avoided making violent choices.

I think this is the most telling of Mr Thompson's state of mind.
He may not have realized it, but he just defeated his entire standpoint against any videogame. What he says is completely true about games, and about life in general. Yes, kids *can* do violent things, but it's up to the individual to "avoid making violent choices" in video games and in life. It is the responsibility of the parents to teach their kids how to deal with frustrating situations, and to be the prime example.

Mr. Thompson is really setting a bad example to the very kids he's trying to protect. Avoiding "making violent choices" involves restraint. But him lashing out at everyone and everything, using his lawyer status as a tool to frighten others not as knowledgable in law to do what he wants done, is sending the opposite message.

This doesn't matter! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16454875)

We have Lieutenant Horatio Caine of CSI Miami to protect us!
In the future, if you're gonna watch somebody's back, let me know about it so I can watch yours.

Child Serial Killer for the PS3 (1)

Isaac Azathoth (646002) | more than 7 years ago | (#16454933)

Yup,

That's going to be the name of my game.

The game will consist of a child racing to eat as many boxes of breakfast cereal as possible in an eating contest. I'll blame the name screw up on the folks in marketing.

It should prove to be entertaining watching the media feeding frenzy....

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