Escapist Podcast: 089: Religion in BioShock, David Jaffe and Playing Nice

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I liked your outro joke Paul. It certainly wasn't good by any measure, but it made me smile.

AkaDad:

Let me put it another way. If the vast majority of people in your country said we should be able to arrest and jail people for murder without any proof or evidence and anyone who wants proof is a freak, that's what it's like to be an atheist.

In America anyone who says they don't believe in God can't get elected to office. There's something incredibly wrong with that and it's maddening to me.

But you are comparing two completely different things. (legal system and believe) But even if I accept your comparison. The problem is a think called the presumption of innocence, therefore a proof is needed to indicate they are guilty. Now you say god is guilty of not existing, doesn't he deserve a presumption of innocence? Where is then your proof? But as I've said, realy strange comparison. I have a better comparison for you.

You will say to your girlfriend (or boyfriend), that you believe, she isn't cheating on you, since there is a trust in your relationship. Wanting proof afterwards is not weird, it's actually wrong, because with proof there is no trust nor believe. That's the problem I'm trying to point out, there is no believe without proof, so proof for god is weird logic.

Can't say I'm all that familiar with election process in USA, but isn't saying "I believe in god" just a way to get more votes, not a necessity to participate, otherwise I agree with you, that would actually be weird.

If it makes you feel better i done use ADblock for anything :D

Pepsik:

AkaDad:

Let me put it another way. If the vast majority of people in your country said we should be able to arrest and jail people for murder without any proof or evidence and anyone who wants proof is a freak, that's what it's like to be an atheist.

In America anyone who says they don't believe in God can't get elected to office. There's something incredibly wrong with that and it's maddening to me.

But you are comparing two completely different things. (legal system and believe) But even if I accept your comparison. The problem is a think called the presumption of innocence, therefore a proof is needed to indicate they are guilty. Now you say god is guilty of not existing, doesn't he deserve a presumption of innocence? Where is then your proof? But as I've said, realy strange comparison. I have a better comparison for you.

You will say to your girlfriend (or boyfriend), that you believe, she isn't cheating on you, since there is a trust in your relationship. Wanting proof afterwards is not weird, it's actually wrong, because with proof there is no trust nor believe. That's the problem I'm trying to point out, there is no believe without proof, so proof for god is weird logic.

Can't say I'm all that familiar with election process in USA, but isn't saying "I believe in god" just a way to get more votes, not a necessity to participate, otherwise I agree with you, that would actually be weird.

you just absolutely made no sense.

Rakschas:

you just absolutely made no sense.

Yeah, I get that a lot, it has something to do with me being crazy and whatnot. :-) Or maybe it is just an oversight on my part. It should be: there is no believe with proof, my bad...

Re: Jaffe, I don't think it's so much that he's out of touch with other parts of the game industry. It's that he's out of touch with people in general. Median household (ie not necessarily individual) income in the US is ~$50k, and fewer than 20% of households make over $100k. ~9% of non-family households make over $100k. (Numbers from the 2010 census.)

A statement like this...

ps. I have zero idea if game reporters make well over 125K and if they do, they may scoff at this. I don't mean them any disrespect- 125k seems like a good salary to me is all :).

...could only come from someone with so much money that they are completely insulated from economic hardship and totally oblivious to the circumstances of ordinary people. (Google tells me he's worth $4.75m.)

LysanderNemoinis:
I don't think the religion-bashing is a product of "stupidity," because if the religion in question was Islam, with the exception of a very, very, VERY small minority, you would not hear anyone in the gaming community attack it. For me, I think it comes down to politics more than anything else. From numerous polls on The Escapist and elsewhere, gamers are very much on the left side of things, a very liberal community. And if you haven't noticed, liberals (generally speaking) aren't very accepting of Christianity/Catholicism where at the same time they'll fall all over themselves to stick up for and apologize for other religions (especially Islam) at the drop of a hat.

It's certainly political on some level. In the US at least, Christians hold an inordinate amount of political power and public influence, while Muslims receive a disproportionate amount of scrutiny, xenophobia, hatred, and violence. I'd be willing to wager that liberal secularists in, say, Tunisia tend to view Islam's influence over politics much the same way as many of us view Christianity's here.

Not that this baptism guy is a political player or anything, and not that I agree with attacking him over his choice, but I think much of the scorn comes from the same source of frustration.

And the Religious guy was hunky dory with the prospect of killing HUNDREDS OF PEOPLE! Seriously. But hey, he believes in an invisible man in the sky that controls everything, so logic can take a hike I geuss.

Agayek:

Susan Arendt:
Interesting and valid point. Hadn't considered that, but you're definitely not wrong.

Honestly, from where I sit, the most likely reason (though there will truly be as many different reasons as there are people) is going to be simple "us vs them" mentality.

In general, the kind of people who embrace gaming and embrace the gaming community, tend to be the kind of people who reject faith, for whatever reason. It's definitely not a rule, but most gamers are at least to the point of agnosticism, and a significant portion (I doubt it's a majority, but it's probably the single largest group) are outright atheists.

When you get a group like that, people that don't fall under that banner become easy targets. Much like how racial segregation allows/drives racial hatreds to fester. Gamers, generally, are not religious, and even if they are, they don't generally discuss religion among each other. As a consequence, it tends to breed a... distaste? for religious thought and a dismissal of it as superstitious nonsense.

Is that necessarily fair? No. But the thing is, gamers are just people. We're going to suffer from the same flaws and facets that every other group of people suffer from. We're not magically immune to it because it's us. Generalization, xenophobia, and the promotion of one's group at the expense of others' are all incredibly common traits throughout human history. Is it really so surprising that we would express our own versions of such?

Now, I don't want to come across as if I'm supporting it, because I'm not. When that shit happens, we need to call attention to it and try to stop it.

But we also need to recognize that we're all only human, and we're largely no better, or even substantially different (at the core), than any other group of humans out there. Fifty thousand years of evolution have hardwired us to be a tribal people. We instinctively have our "us" (generally defined by the monkeysphere, though I'm unsure of the technical term for such) and our "them" (everyone else), and we will always prefer "us" over "them".

If we ever want to change that, it will take a substantial amount of work, and it may not even be possible without changing the pieces that drive our most basic desires and instincts.

I think people tend to dislike Religion is based upon how much it pervades into society, this being most prevalent and obvious with gay marriage. I don't know how it all goes in America but in Australia it's outright banned, if homosexuals want to tie the knot they have to go to New Zealand now. The only logic in halting it is based of the Christian belief that Homosexuality is a sin... and it makes's people squeemish thinking about gay porn (they'll still make it married or not).

There also tends to be a lot of hypocrisy and logical fallicy's with Religion, gay preists touching alter boys, people who have dedicated their lives to never having sex telling people who do how it should be done, etc.
If I don't beleive in the institution it should not be influencing Goverment and public decisons... just realised the irony in that last statement.

MrHide-Patten:
And the Religious guy was hunky dory with the prospect of killing HUNDREDS OF PEOPLE! Seriously. But hey, he believes in an invisible man in the sky that controls everything, so logic can take a hike I geuss.

Think about crusades and holy wars, killing people is about finding a good enough reason, not to mention, these people aren't real. Baptism is a sacred tradition, problem with non-reality is that baptism isn't about diving in the water, it's a symbol for washing away your sins and accepting religion in your life, so the activity is not as important as what it represents. If he really took it personally, it's not about commiting virtual crimes, it's about accepting a different religion and forsake the old one, willingly I might add (you don't have much choice with killing people in this game, since they are trying to kill you). And if you think it's about an invisible man, than you will indeed never find a logic in that. But one man's logic is other man's nonsense, that's the way it is.

Btw. wasn't predator also invisible "man"? :-D

Pepsik:

MrHide-Patten:
And the Religious guy was hunky dory with the prospect of killing HUNDREDS OF PEOPLE! Seriously. But hey, he believes in an invisible man in the sky that controls everything, so logic can take a hike I geuss.

Think about crusades and holy wars, killing people is about finding a good enough reason, not to mention, these people aren't real. Baptism is a sacred tradition, problem with non-reality is that baptism isn't about diving in the water, it's a symbol for washing away your sins and accepting religion in your life, so the activity is not as important as what it represents. If he really took it personally, it's not about commiting virtual crimes, it's about accepting a different religion and forsake the old one, willingly I might add (you don't have much choice with killing people in this game, since they are trying to kill you). And if you think it's about an invisible man, than you will indeed never find a logic in that. But one man's logic is other man's nonsense, that's the way it is.

Btw. wasn't predator also invisible "man"? :-D

Ah, but Predators uncloak and smite people themselves, but you know Predators are also fiction.
But I don't know, "But one man's logic is other man's nonsense", I'm not Religeous so I don't understand/empathise with the signifigance, because my brains going "it's just water this guy is saying is special".

I just don't see how he could seperate himself from killing for the sake of self defence/paranoia and at the Baptism scene. ABSOLUTLEY incapable of fathoming it.

It's like trying to understand how gravity works.

MrHide-Patten:

Ah, but Predators uncloak and smite people themselves, but you know Predators are also fiction.
But I don't know, "But one man's logic is other man's nonsense", I'm not Religeous so I don't understand/empathise with the signifigance, because my brains going "it's just water this guy is saying is special".

I just don't see how he could seperate himself from killing for the sake of self defence/paranoia and at the Baptism scene. ABSOLUTLEY incapable of fathoming it.

It's like trying to understand how gravity works.

A good comparison for you, it's like signing a bill of exchange. For someone it's signing a piece of paper, why not do it? For educated person it's a special piece of paper, because someone (the law) made it an obligation to pay someone money. Either is just about a way of thinking, bible is like law for some people.

I think giving you a choice was the problem, you didn't have another way out, but you had to accept it by clicking, if it was part of a cutscene, forced on to you, it might have been okay for him...

Pepsik:

MrHide-Patten:

Ah, but Predators uncloak and smite people themselves, but you know Predators are also fiction.
But I don't know, "But one man's logic is other man's nonsense", I'm not Religeous so I don't understand/empathise with the signifigance, because my brains going "it's just water this guy is saying is special".

I just don't see how he could seperate himself from killing for the sake of self defence/paranoia and at the Baptism scene. ABSOLUTLEY incapable of fathoming it.

It's like trying to understand how gravity works.

A good comparison for you, it's like signing a bill of exchange. For someone it's signing a piece of paper, why not do it? For educated person it's a special piece of paper, because someone (the law) made it an obligation to pay someone money. Either is just about a way of thinking, bible is like law for some people.

I think giving you a choice was the problem, you didn't have another way out, but you had to accept it by clicking, if it was part of a cutscene, forced on to you, it might have been okay for him...

Admitantly I hestiated at that Baptism part, but more in a "Do have to?" sort of mindset.
I felt Booker was of the same mindset (his reaction to the "clensing dish" sort of summed up his opinion on washing away sins; "Good luck with that pal"). Sort of felt like the Elephant in the room, these poepl beleive it does something and to me/Booker this is a waste of time, but by the end of the game I see it had a lot of context in the narrative.

MrHide-Patten:

Admitantly I hestiated at that Baptism part, but more in a "Do have to?" sort of mindset.
I felt Booker was of the same mindset (his reaction to the "clensing dish" sort of summed up his opinion on washing away sins; "Good luck with that pal"). Sort of felt like the Elephant in the room, these poepl beleive it does something and to me/Booker this is a waste of time, but by the end of the game I see it had a lot of context in the narrative.

Heh, I wanted to shoot the guy or at least punch him. :-D (but hey, I was undercover) But if we don't want to, if someone took it seriously, it's at least understandable, that he would have a problem with it. Not like he was shouting, that the game was evil and creators should burn in hell, he just couldn't play it and wanted his money back. I would say that's rather reasonable :-)

Interesting discussion about the backlash, but I'm rather disappointed that you guys/gals completely failed to mention something rather important. You all made a major effort to point out that the most extreme examples of religion are also usually the minority, albeit a very vocal one, yet you seemed to skip over the fact that this is also true of a great deal of the backlash towards the 'baptism guy'.

Pardon me if I interpreted incorrectly, but the way you talked about the response suggested that the attitude shown in this situation is that held by the majority of both gamers and atheists. Perhaps this is not what you intended, but having made such a point of the 'vocal minorities' in religion and absolutely no mention of the same occurrence in gaming and/or atheist culture seems like something of a large oversight.

Again, correct me if I'm wrong, but the way you discussed the reaction was almost like you were trying to determine why almost all gamers felt this way.

ZombieFanatic:

Again, correct me if I'm wrong, but the way you discussed the reaction was almost like you were trying to determine why almost all gamers felt this way.

I think the main problem was, that there was no minority, which defended the baptism guy. There will always be loud haters, but this time around no minority of defenders...

Pepsik:

ZombieFanatic:

Again, correct me if I'm wrong, but the way you discussed the reaction was almost like you were trying to determine why almost all gamers felt this way.

I think the main problem was, that there was no minority, which defended the baptism guy. There will always be loud haters, but this time around no minority of defenders...

If I recall correctly, they did briefly mention there were some who defended him. My point is that on the internet, the angriest people will always be the ones heard from most, but that doesn't mean they represent a majority.

MrHide-Patten:
I think people tend to dislike Religion is based upon how much it pervades into society, this being most prevalent and obvious with gay marriage. I don't know how it all goes in America but in Australia it's outright banned, if homosexuals want to tie the knot they have to go to New Zealand now. The only logic in halting it is based of the Christian belief that Homosexuality is a sin... and it makes's people squeemish thinking about gay porn (they'll still make it married or not).

There also tends to be a lot of hypocrisy and logical fallicy's with Religion, gay preists touching alter boys, people who have dedicated their lives to never having sex telling people who do how it should be done, etc.
If I don't beleive in the institution it should not be influencing Goverment and public decisons... just realised the irony in that last statement.

You're equating your perspective on religion with everyone's, which is a fallacy in and of itself.

And reading between the lines, it's supporting my original point. You view religion and religious thought as silly or idiotic, something no one with any sense would participate in. In doing so, you generalize and dismiss those that are different from you, because clearly they're not smart enough to see all the glaring logical flaws that you yourself can see. It's obviously not because they recognize those flaws and continue to believe in the core, good message because while it's flawed, it's still, at its heart, a group of people trying to do the best they can for themselves and everyone around them.

Like I said, generalizations, xenophobia, and promotion of one's own group at the expense of others'. We're no more immune to that than anyone else is. (Conversely, other groups are no more immune to it than we are. That's one of the reasons the Catholic Church has so much issue with 'teh gayz'.)

ZombieFanatic:

If I recall correctly, they did briefly mention there were some who defended him. On the internet, the angriest people will always be the ones heard from most, but that doesn't mean they represent a majority.

Well even if so, some is not enough. :-) Try to badmouth the gays and a flame war will begin, from what I understood, this was more like a witch hunt (or the opposite of that: priest hunt?), he is a believer, get him. It's not about majority being like this, it's about majority should make more of a fuss about defending freedom of religion. :-) At least, that's what I heard, but maybe I wanted to hear that, who knows...

One thing i honestly found quite funny is the question why no-one came to defend christianity against the backlash as many would have if it had been racist attacks or homophobic attacks etc.
I'd say the answer to that is quite easy: christianity doesn't need defending. Do people come to the defence of the big bully in the courtyard immediately, the one time he's getting attacked? More importantly, would anyone wonder why it doesn't happen and think this is some kind of moral failing on part of the bystanders who'd immediately defend the small kids against the big bully?
Christianity is the biggest religion in the world, has the most the most political influence of any of the religions and is the religion of the most powerful countries in the world. And that doesn't even compare to the difference between "religion" and "non-belief" in general, because if there's one thing all religions can unite against, it's atheists. Comparing christians to minorities that have been traditionally discriminated against is not only silly because christianity has never been an oppressed minority (no, not even during the roman empire), most of the time christianity has actually been the oppressor or at least aided the oppressors.

That being said, i don't think anyone should have to prove they have "good reasons" to return a game. Given electronic sales, there's no damaged product the seller can't resell (thus no direct loss) so provided they haven't played much of the game (say, no returns after having played 15% or more), "i want to return it" should be the only thing needed. What are game purchases, some kind of suicide pact? I can go to the store and return anything else i just bought. I might not be entitled to get the full price back if the package is opened, but with digital sales that's not an issue.

Rakschas:
To take religion seriously, to be devout, you have to constantly and without interruption take things seriously, that have no foothold whatsoever in the plane of physics and science. That notion can and ultimately will come into conflict with similar concepts, as introduced in video games.

I disagree with premise one here that I quoted. Seems to me that you are committing the fallacy of broad generalization, that is you assume all things are like one thing that shares a similar trait. Specifically you assume that just because a religious person takes on faith the words and stories in there religion, that they have to do so for all words and stories.

For example lets say someone believes in god. OK, they may have no definitive proof of that besides, "because religion says so", but they choose to take it on faith. And so they take that one thing seriously despite not having the logical backing to prove it.

But where your argument falls apart is when you say that because they choose to believe in that one thing, then they must believe in all things. See a religious person will (probably) not see the religious stories as fictitious, so to them there is a clear difference between that of their religious beliefs and that of fiction stories.

So to that person there is no cognitive dissonance between belief in fictional stories and belief.

Now you could attack the idea that religious beliefs are fictitious but that would be a different argument.

NWJ94:
Really appreciate what you said Susan about the knee jerk reaction to Christians. I'm protestant Christian; the kind of Christian that thinks Fox News is the most hilariously dumb thing on the face of the planet, believes in evolution, supports gay marriage, and is Pro-choice, but still Christian and a man of faith.

It's always really bothered me, particularly on this site which I otherwise love, how fast people are to paint religious people as idiots and mindless sheep who all belong to the "God hates gays" and "Believe or go to hell" type. Myself, and many many other Christians, utterly despise the kind of stereotypes the fringe element has made and always try be a counter example, but often in gaming communities it really feels like a losing battle. Thanks for making me feel a little better and not so much the odd one out.

Getting a little to sappy here so any-who great podcast as always, love having something to listen to during my Friday commute.

Well while I understand what you say I do have to say that there are only two types of people that are spoken about. Those that have changed our life in a positive way or those that have changed it in a negative way. I know people like you exist in all religions and in large number. However I do not think about you since I have the guy on the corner with pictures of aborted babies screaming at me for being a sinner, the one on the bus talking down to me since I do not follow his life path, the woman insisting I must fix myself because I was born male and therefore oppress women for fun.

We (the public) do not notice you as you are not yelling at us. I know it is not easy but try to take some comfort in the knowledge that the hate is directed at the loud ones just people fail to say that. I mean if all positive forms of religion had fireworks and metal music behind them at all times maybe we could pull the attention away from the few morons and help fix the image. However since the act of being a good person does not coincide with the notion of "hey everyone look at me I am doing awesome stuff for people!" I fear this will be a hard fight as you must show the loud as the few and the silent as the many.

Preconceived notions are always fun to deal with especially when they are medical.

Nude volleyball was a big thing in the naturist community and therefore in popular culture in the 1950s through the 1970s. Its was a THING, so it became the comedic answer of choice that everyone in the 1950s and 1970s would know. It is what might be considered a lost meme. I'm actually rather shocked that Susan Arendt doesn't know why nude volleyball is a thing.

tkioz:
On the subject of adblock (I'm a pubclub member FYI) there are things you need to understand, I don't know the average age of your audience, but people in their early to mid 30s have been online for 10-20 years now, we saw the very very worst of the advertising industry online, we saw the growth of popups, popunders, flash, gifs, etc, etc, etc, etc. some of us we'll never tolerate advertisements again, the well has been poisoned, our goodwill is gone, blame the people who ruined it, don't blame the people who were pushed into avoiding all advertisement online, don't just complain about how we're selfish (as I said I give you money every year, three years running now), you need to woo us back, and complaining wont do that.

I can understand being disillusioned with ads, but when around 45% of site users have adblock, as mentioned by Susan in the Podcat, it seems a little much. This is pretty much half of your audience taking your content for free. That seems like a completely unsustainable business model. My stance is simply this, don't take content for free. Either watch the ad or join a premium club, like you've done. No matter how bad the ads are I cannot get over the idea that I am stealing this content. A 15 second ad is the least I can do to reimburse the content creator.

Splitzi:

I can understand being disillusioned with ads, but when around 45% of site users have adblock, as mentioned by Susan in the Podcat, it seems a little much. This is pretty much half of your audience taking your content for free. That seems like a completely unsustainable business model. My stance is simply this, don't take content for free. Either watch the ad or join a premium club, like you've done. No matter how bad the ads are I cannot get over the idea that I am stealing this content. A 15 second ad is the least I can do to reimburse the content creator.

I would say that about half of the 45% of people don't even realize, they have adblock on on this website, since it is defaultly on. I don't think it's about some malicious plan of deliberately stealing.

But one sarcastic thanks from Mai'dah and my eyes went slowly for the corner of my browser and when I saw the red color I actually felt really bad, unfortunately there is no load previous save to fix this, so my sincere apologies, will try to visit a lot of content here with adblock off for few extra ad view. :-) (really wondering how many people turned off their addblock after watching this podcat...)

Agayek:

MrHide-Patten:
I think people tend to dislike Religion is based upon how much it pervades into society, this being most prevalent and obvious with gay marriage. I don't know how it all goes in America but in Australia it's outright banned, if homosexuals want to tie the knot they have to go to New Zealand now. The only logic in halting it is based of the Christian belief that Homosexuality is a sin... and it makes's people squeemish thinking about gay porn (they'll still make it married or not).

There also tends to be a lot of hypocrisy and logical fallicy's with Religion, gay preists touching alter boys, people who have dedicated their lives to never having sex telling people who do how it should be done, etc.
If I don't beleive in the institution it should not be influencing Goverment and public decisons... just realised the irony in that last statement.

You're equating your perspective on religion with everyone's, which is a fallacy in and of itself.

And reading between the lines, it's supporting my original point. You view religion and religious thought as silly or idiotic, something no one with any sense would participate in. In doing so, you generalize and dismiss those that are different from you, because clearly they're not smart enough to see all the glaring logical flaws that you yourself can see. It's obviously not because they recognize those flaws and continue to believe in the core, good message because while it's flawed, it's still, at its heart, a group of people trying to do the best they can for themselves and everyone around them.

Like I said, generalizations, xenophobia, and promotion of one's own group at the expense of others'. We're no more immune to that than anyone else is. (Conversely, other groups are no more immune to it than we are. That's one of the reasons the Catholic Church has so much issue with 'teh gayz'.)

I'm all for people believing what they want, but in all honesty I do think that it's silly to take something off of face value and not based off any form of evidence. But I'm not going to go onto forums and start trying to convert people to atheism, that's just smacking my head against a brick wall.

But the issue was people were really crawling up this guys ass about not going through Bioshock because of his fundamental beliefs. Now whilst I think it's silly, I'm not one to tell him what to do, freedom of choice and all that. I was sitting next to a Pastor on a train once and he got talking to me and all that jazz, and I didn't feel the complusion to smackhim over the head with my personal beliefs. So whilst there are people that kick the hornet's nest, it's still a vocal minority on both sides.

Also the fact that this is Bioshock Infinite, its as they said in the Podcast, if this was any other game it wouldn't have been such a hot topic. A guy messaged me once when I was playing the original and he told me that he didn't want to play Bioshock because of the Plasmid syringes. Drugs and whatnot.

I choose not to use ad block because I want to support the people who create content I like. It's the same reason I always buy music I like instead of copying it. When someone makes something I like, I want to give them money so they keep making more of it. In a way, it's ultimately my selfish desire to have good content that leads me to this conclusion.

see I would like to think that Susan chose too talk about the bioshock baptism guy simply to start a religious debate in the comments. Successful troll? maybe.

Lincoln Thurber:
Nude volleyball was a big thing in the naturist community and therefore in popular culture in the 1950s through the 1970s. Its was a THING, so it became the comedic answer of choice that everyone in the 1950s and 1970s would know. It is what might be considered a lost meme. I'm actually rather shocked that Susan Arendt doesn't know why nude volleyball is a thing.

If you noticed, I did mention nudist colonies. But I felt that fell outside the purview of the question - a nudist colony isn't something anyone does clothed, ergo, anything done at a nudist colony would be an invalid answer.

Of course, if you want to argue that I'm overthinking a Family Feud question...well, there is that. :)

MrCollins:
Ha! Take this, I'm using an ingenious system to block ads, and I'm flaunting it at you. Look at it, look at it now!!!
It's the best.
image

In other news, I think you guys didn't really discuss the main point (or at least the interesting proposition) in what Jaffe was saying, the idea of what size an audience would be needed to sustain a writer and the potential for good writing that would come from financial security. I feel that by spending more time talking about his silly salary figure and lack of editorial (which really where peripheral to the idea) and the arguments over it. You are just adding fuel to the flames?

I wonder, and have a question for you, at what point do you think that it is not productive to talk about the silly arguments that happen and instead discuss the issue? Is it better to ignore the unproductive arguments and bickering, or do you feel the need to report the vitriol?

Love the podcat, keep up the good work.

First, we're not reporting - this is a discussion, not a news show. Secondly, I very much wanted to bring up geek culture's apparent desire to just be angry at someone. I'm very frustrated with how gleefully people are willing to pick a fight, even if that fight completely ignores the main thrust of the original comment. I wasn't looking to discuss Jaffe's proposal, but rather the angry response to a single detail in it - ok, he overshot the salary by a lot, so what? But that's what people latched onto and ran with because...why? It's the why I wanted to explore. Where is this anger coming from? Does our culture feel more comfortable being negative rather than positive, or even neutral? Was it simply because it was a very emotional week? Is it that Twitter has evolved into the social media platform you use when you want to be pissed off about something? I don't know the answers to any of those questions, so I raised the matter for discussion.

NWJ94:
Really appreciate what you said Susan about the knee jerk reaction to Christians. I'm protestant Christian; the kind of Christian that thinks Fox News is the most hilariously dumb thing on the face of the planet, believes in evolution, supports gay marriage, and is Pro-choice, but still Christian and a man of faith.

It's always really bothered me, particularly on this site which I otherwise love, how fast people are to paint religious people as idiots and mindless sheep who all belong to the "God hates gays" and "Believe or go to hell" type. Myself, and many many other Christians, utterly despise the kind of stereotypes the fringe element has made and always try be a counter example, but often in gaming communities it really feels like a losing battle. Thanks for making me feel a little better and not so much the odd one out.

Getting a little to sappy here so any-who great podcast as always, love having something to listen to during my Friday commute.

But its tough to say x is good when your scripture clearly argues x is evil. I mean, ESPECIALLY as a protestant christian where a huge aspect of protestantism is "scripture alone" so it becomes even harder to argue against scripture. How much scripture can you ignore before you can no longer identify as a protestant or even a christian?

You can take the other way out, which is what I actually do, and look at yourself as a cultural or secular christian/Jew/muslim/whatever. In that case, you consider others of your faith community much more as a nation/ethnicity/culture and less of a faith itself. A kind of "this is my background, this where I come from, and this is my family even if I don't agree with them on alot" kind of position. But then you wouldn't actually take articles of your faith all that serious anyhow (think christmas/easter christians).

I don't know, in many ways having a faith makes you seem crazy (if you hold too strongly to it) or hypocritical/dishonest (if you hold too weakly to it). And just so its clear I am not trying to turn you to the dark side or any such thing, I am merely pointing out why people seem to turn on those who claim to be a part of an organized religious. those who are spiritual, for example, kind of escape these issues altogether

Eric the Orange:

Rakschas:
To take religion seriously, to be devout, you have to constantly and without interruption take things seriously, that have no foothold whatsoever in the plane of physics and science. That notion can and ultimately will come into conflict with similar concepts, as introduced in video games.

I disagree with premise one here that I quoted. Seems to me that you are committing the fallacy of broad generalization, that is you assume all things are like one thing that shares a similar trait. Specifically you assume that just because a religious person takes on faith the words and stories in there religion, that they have to do so for all words and stories.

For example lets say someone believes in god. OK, they may have no definitive proof of that besides, "because religion says so", but they choose to take it on faith. And so they take that one thing seriously despite not having the logical backing to prove it.

But where your argument falls apart is when you say that because they choose to believe in that one thing, then they must believe in all things. See a religious person will (probably) not see the religious stories as fictitious, so to them there is a clear difference between that of their religious beliefs and that of fiction stories.

So to that person there is no cognitive dissonance between belief in fictional stories and belief.

Now you could attack the idea that religious beliefs are fictitious but that would be a different argument.

patterns of behaviour and thought, however insane, that are shared by the vast majority of your peers are impossible to be identified as insane by oneself.

Rakschas:
snip

A. Your assuming that I am a religious person, and that is why I am defending religion. This is wrong, I am an atheist.

B. What your describing is known as the "band wagon fallacy", which states that just because something is believed by the majority does not make it true.

C. Your statement does not counteract my claim in any way.

... waaaait. I haven't heard this story before. Dude was OK with his onscreen self trespassing, murdering, kidnapping, but baptism - a clearly insincere one no less - was a bridge too far?

If he didn't like the religious themes, then fine. But if he was trying to say that he sincerely thinks that something his onscreen character does somehow changes the reality of what he is, then he is either profoundly broken* or he is lying.

( * Can't differentiate fiction and reality + pays money to be the one acting out violent fictional acts = profoundly broken. Actually, just the first one = profoundly broken, but the second one makes it worse.)

Eric the Orange:

Rakschas:
snip

A. Your assuming that I am a religious person, and that is why I am defending religion. This is wrong, I am an atheist.

B. What your describing is known as the "band wagon fallacy", which states that just because something is believed by the majority does not make it true.

C. THIS DOESNT PROVE ANYTHING. *MADLAUGHTER*.

A. No I dont assume that and at no point i say that i do. I dont because I dont need to.

B. It is not. The bandwagon fallacy is something similar that relates to peer pressure, a phenomenon that is included in the hypothesis, but that said hypothesis is not exclusive to.

C. It does.

And before i make you waste any more effort: We each have stated our claims and presented our arguments. I dont see something more fruitfull coming out of it, this being the internet and all.

Still in the process of listening to the podcast, but just want to say this is one of the greatest podcasts you guys have put up (and I've been listening since day one).

On the whole baptism thing, I could only nod along as you guys discussed it. There's a lot to be said about the "silent majority", the majority which is misrepresented by the fringe extremists. I myself was brought up as a Catholic, and no way identify with the anti-gay, anti-birth control, etc extremists. Sometimes, I just want to scream "can't we all just get along?" Then I think of these guys:
image

Your "Play Nice" tactic, Susan is pure gold. I wish more people would follow it. The world would definitely be a better place if more people took the time and effort to do that "tiny thing" that will make someone's day/week/hour/whatever.
And Justin is 100% right about Steam. The holiday season and the summer sale are just insane times, we're just gifting games left and right, it's so great, awesome warm and fuzzy feeling.
Agreed, Susan, we're all spread out, I have virtually NO true geek/gamer in my immediate "RL" circle, and it can sometimes feel very lonely. Thank goodness for places like the Escapist! :)

And yes, driving/flying can really, really, really suck. They need to invent teleportation ASAP. Seriously.

Finally, I hadn't renewed my Pub Club membership because I wasn't using the "extra features" anymore (the Pub Club forum, the slot on the TF2 server, etc), but after listening to this podcast, you reminded me why I subscribed in the first place, went back and renewed it. You guys need to stay on the map, and that's just my small contribution. Stay awesome, podcat people!

I admit, I use ad-block. I hate ads, it's that simple. What I didn't know, was that it hurts the sites I block ads on. Thanks to you informing me, I have decided to (and just did) sign up for the Pub Club. I want to support my favorite gaming site. I don't say this to get any "yay me" replies. I just want you guys to know that what you say matters. This goes with the theme of being nice, and talking about things and meeting people half way. Thank you for giving me knowledge I didn't have before, and I'm glad I can repay you in some way.

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