Connecticut Town Cancels Videogame Cull

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Connecticut Town Cancels Videogame Cull

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The Connecticut town says it has accomplished its goals of "raising awareness."

In the wake of the mass murder at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, citizens of the nearby town of Southington organized a "Videogames Return Program," scheduled to take place on January 12, which would allow people to exchange violent videogames for gift vouchers that could be used for other, more family-friend forms of entertainment. The collected games would eventually be destroyed.

But now the program has been canceled. The SouthingtonSOS group said in a statement that the response to the initiative has been "swift, positive and supportive," but that its two primary goals - raising awareness of violent videogames and "inspiring conversations at home" - have been accomplished, and thus the actual collection and destruction of games is unnecessary.

"Based on the success of our first two objectives, and a re-evaluation of the logistics involved in the physical return process, we have decided to cancel the return of violent video games on January 12, 2013," SouthingtonSOS said in a statement. "Having achieved our essential goals the return program has simply become an unnecessary step in our basic mission. This action will also serve to reduce public inconvenience."

If I was a man prone to speculation, I might suggest that it's possible the group is trying to avoid an embarrassment comparable to that suffered by the 2009 videogame cull in Winnenden, Germany, which attracted virtually zero attention from the public at large. Or it could be - and I certainly hope that this is the case - that it took seriously the argument of psychologist Christopher J. Ferguson, who expressed concern that the focus on videogames could distract attention from the real problem and possibly make the situation worse, not better. Either way, the cancellation of a dubious response to a horrific event is almost certainly the best possible outcome.

A substitute for the promised vouchers for other, more family-friendly forms of entertainment will be given to family who have had "the violent videogames conversation with their children" will be provided by the Southington Chamber of Commerce.

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What awareness? All I saw is unjustified finger pointing. You don't blame stuff like that on video games, you blame them on the person.

Me thinks they gave up when gamers who know more swear words than your average vocabulary does words, rose up and voiced their opinions. :P

"inspiring conversations at home" - I can just about hear it now. "Give me my fucking games back!"

They need to be made aware that violent media isn't the problem.

Andy Chalk:

A substitute for the promised vouchers for other, more family-friendly forms of entertainment will be given to family who have had "the violent videogames conversation with their children" will be provided by the Southington Chamber of Commerce.

On days like these I almost wish to be a parent, residing in the lovely town of Southington. If only to tell them I've had a "violent video game conversation" with my kid, and that violent video games are, in fact, pretty dang awesome.

The Connecticut town says it has accomplished its goals of "raising awareness."

I'll have to use that line in future when I am caught out being an utter asshat and realise I need to pull out at the last minute of doing something incredibly counter-productive.

"inspiring conversations at home"

Yeah, distracting conversations about who is really out of control when they so quickly decided on the modern equivalent of book burning over the actions of one clearly mentally deranged person.

So are we saying I could trade my games in with the Southington Chamber of Commerce claiming they are all new hit titles that sell for 40-60 monies then go buy more games and easily replace the ones I sold with goty editions? The excuse does sound a little flimsy as to why this is now cancelled. Maybe they realized that all the kids are also the ones who fix all the electronics at home and can actually work the parental lock on the tv? Did the leader of this group get parental locked out of all the good cable shows?

Now we're all aware of how dumb you are.

I'm more concerned about the precedent the very idea of the thing sets. As I said on a previous thread regarding the thing, what is this, the fucking Dark Ages? Are we going to start burning witches next?

You know what's a great form of family entertainment? Sitting down at the dinner table having a meal together. Really, that works (even with angry, emo teenagers). I wonder how many of these families who are up-in-arms about video games actually spend any measurable amount of time together. But, hey, we've got a nice scapegoat to go by!

I'm thinking they either realized, as the article stated, that this would be a complete failure or the amount of money required (ie > $15) would be too much. How much can a small city afford for an operation like this anyway?

You mean it wasn't the comparison to Nazi Book burning that changed their mind?

It's all about political action until it gets expensive. Easier to just point fingers.

"Based on the success of our first two objectives, and a re-evaluation of the logistics involved in the physical return process, we have decided to cancel the return of violent video games on January 12, 2013," SouthingtonSOS said in a statement. "Having achieved our essential goals the return program has simply become an unnecessary step in our basic mission. This action will also serve to reduce public inconvenience."

So in other words "It was too expensive so we're not actually going to go through with it, but we're going to call our operation a success anyway."

If by awareness they mean brought about a tired conversation with no significant data to support it I agree, they have raised awareness.

Eclipse Dragon:

"Based on the success of our first two objectives, and a re-evaluation of the logistics involved in the physical return process, we have decided to cancel the return of violent video games on January 12, 2013," SouthingtonSOS said in a statement. "Having achieved our essential goals the return program has simply become an unnecessary step in our basic mission. This action will also serve to reduce public inconvenience."

So in other words "It was too expensive so we're not actually going to go through with it, but we're going to call our operation a success anyway."

It would've been more dignified to just admit that they were wrong and apologize for being ignorant. Too bad we can't have nice things like that.

We don't outlaw beer when drunk driving became a problem... wait, we DID outlaw beer.. once... it... created organized crime... yeah..

I'm guessing this fell through due to a combination of not enough funds and backlash from people who have more brains than they do.

I mean hell, why can't they just admit that the problem was that someone with serious mental issues had easy access to automatic weapons? And no, I'm not one of those 'guns are to blame' people. I support the second amendment. I just believe that there should be a whole mess of regulations and the like in place for potential gun owner (such as extensive background and mental checks, mandatory safety courses to go through, what you can own where, etc.).

The care and recognition of mental health needs a major overhaul though. Last year I was institutionalized for two and a half weeks, and the care I and the others were given was utter crap. I spent three days in a waiting room before I was actually admitted, which was over-occupied with the seemingly fine, a guy who thought he was Jesus (who at one point stripped naked), a few homeless, a handful of Rikers inmates, and some screamers/criers. At no point did I see any doctor while I was there (psychologist or medical), nor was much attention given to anyone aside from when medication was given out (which I was never told what the pills I was given were supposed to do) and meal time, which even in those instances we weren't given a whole lot of attention.

To top things off, they never made clear why I was put there (I heard three different reasons why I was put there, not one of them true), and the few times I was able to see someone for help, it did nothing (one was a social worker who told me that it was my fault that I was still there, and the other was a group program where everyone just sat around for a few hours and did nothing, not to mention it also made me miss lunch on every occasion).

Yeah they raised enough awareness of how large douchebags they are for furthering their own agenda on the backs of all the victims of a terrible tragedy that is in fact largely unrelated to the matter.
More than enough awareness indeed. Great success.

Give those people a medal.

Eclipse Dragon:

"Based on the success of our first two objectives, and a re-evaluation of the logistics involved in the physical return process, we have decided to cancel the return of violent video games on January 12, 2013," SouthingtonSOS said in a statement. "Having achieved our essential goals the return program has simply become an unnecessary step in our basic mission. This action will also serve to reduce public inconvenience."

So in other words "It was too expensive so we're not actually going to go through with it, but we're going to call our operation a success anyway."

Gah... fucking ninja'd...

Yeah, I cant read that statement without snickering. I should remember this when something comes up that I said I was going to do, but decided it really wasnt worth the effort.

thesilentman:
What awareness? All I saw is unjustified finger pointing. You don't blame stuff like that on video games, you blame them on the person.

Precisely.

Just how retarded is the average human now? I'm seriously concerned when literally the only thing that happens is scapegoating caused by manipulated media.

so it was a publicity/trolling stunt.

okay.

its hard to argue that observing simulated violence everyday doesn't effect people negatively when observing actual violence everyday certainly DOES effect people negatively. I don't support the move because as people have pointed out its merely a symptom to the overall problem that comes off as a blame game from one form of media to another. Truly, it is a problem that people will grapple with forever, but the only true cure we know to violent activity is strong parental/guardian influence to craft and shape people into upstanding human beings.

As long as we are finger pointing though (hypocritical I know :P), lets call big pharma out on being the main creator of multiple violent psychosis and psychotic behavioral problems in society. As well as being the sole contributor to the worlds most unregulated and abused criminal drug market that has resulted in death and decay of human society that effects us all daily.

so in other words, We dont have any cash for these vouchers so yeah we were just being media whores.

I suppose never being taken seriously again beats admitting you were wrong.

Andy Chalk:

[...] Or it could be - and I certainly hope that this is the case - that it took seriously the argument of psychologist Christopher J. Ferguson, who expressed concern that the focus on videogames could distract attention from the real problem and possibly make the situation worse, not better. Either way, the cancellation of a dubious response to a horrific event is almost certainly the best possible outcome.

What IS the real problem?

Triaed:

Andy Chalk:

[...] Or it could be - and I certainly hope that this is the case - that it took seriously the argument of psychologist Christopher J. Ferguson, who expressed concern that the focus on videogames could distract attention from the real problem and possibly make the situation worse, not better. Either way, the cancellation of a dubious response to a horrific event is almost certainly the best possible outcome.

What IS the real problem?

Depending on your point of view, it's either lack of proper care/treatment for the mentally ill, or gun control.

canadamus_prime:
I'm more concerned about the precedent the very idea of the thing sets. As I said on a previous thread regarding the thing, what is this, the fucking Dark Ages? Are we going to start burning witches next?

Sadly, 1200 years of evolution doesn't change much. We're still basically the same dumb monkeys then that we are today. We just have flashing lights to make us feel superior. That's not to say we can't learn from failure or history, but it's still up to the person whether or not to step into the future.

And once again simply taking responsibility for ones action fails again. At least they won't be getting respect from anyone for a long time... thats good right?! RIGHT?!

Loki_The_Good:

canadamus_prime:
I'm more concerned about the precedent the very idea of the thing sets. As I said on a previous thread regarding the thing, what is this, the fucking Dark Ages? Are we going to start burning witches next?

Sadly, 1200 years of evolution doesn't change much. We're still basically the same dumb monkeys then that we are today. We just have flashing lights to make us feel superior. That's not to say we can't learn from failure or history, but it's still up to the person whether or not to step into the future.

Yep, it just goes to show that it just takes one or two reactionary idiots and all of the social progress society has made in the last 1500 years goes down the shitter.

Triaed:

What IS the real problem?

I think it is a lack of proper treatment and care for the mentally ill, mental health services in America (from what i've seen and heard) are a joke. i've never been involved with the mental health services here in Australia, so i don't know what it's like

money spent: 0
fame gained: internet
win win

those guys are profesional trolls.

Since they talk about alternate ways to compensate people that hand in games I would say it's much more likely whoever organised it had virtually no budget, and they suddenly realised that handing out expensive gift vouchers in return for something they weren't going to make a profit from was a really expensive demonstration.

Hey, money talks.

thesilentman:
What awareness? All I saw is unjustified finger pointing. You don't blame stuff like that on video games, you blame them on the person.

I wouldn't be looking to place blame at all. That's a reactive response, the only way to truly come out of this better is to create a proactive response.

What was it that caused them to do this?

Once you have those pieces how can you reduce them?

That to me is the only correct answer. One should look to prevent future tragedies instead of pitch forking over previous ones.

(And of course I'm pro-putting violent people in jail, but each lost life and each imprisoned person is a failure of humanity as a whole).

Sometimes we can't "fix" folks, you can't prevent every tragedy, but it would be nice to approach each tragedy with a level head and try to fix the causes rather than merely eliminate the symptoms.

Where's the source for this news?

Eclipse Dragon:

"Based on the success of our first two objectives, and a re-evaluation of the logistics involved in the physical return process, we have decided to cancel the return of violent video games on January 12, 2013," SouthingtonSOS said in a statement. "Having achieved our essential goals the return program has simply become an unnecessary step in our basic mission. This action will also serve to reduce public inconvenience."

So in other words "It was too expensive so we're not actually going to go through with it, but we're going to call our operation a success anyway."

The problem is that studies on if violent video games make people are all over the map. The 2001 Anderson study said there was a relationship while the 2001 Sherry and 2009 Ferguson studies showed no relationship and a 2011 Ferguson shows a positive effect. Furthermore a 2010 Ferguson paper showed the studies that showed relationships were poorly designed.

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