EA Chief: Game Violence Worries Are a "Perception Problem"

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EA Chief: Game Violence Worries Are a "Perception Problem"

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Electronic Arts CEO John Riccitiello says there's zero evidence of a link between games and violent behavior but the game industry still has to wrestle with the perception that there is.

Numerous studies conducted over the years have found no links between videogaming and violent behavior in the real world, but that doesn't mean people have stopped looking at games for easy answers to hard questions about terrible things. The mass murder at the Sandy Hook Elementary School last year launched a new round of questions, accusations and soul-searching about what role, if any, videogames play in turning people into crazed mass murderers, but while most members of the industry were happy to cooperate with U.S. Vice President Joe Biden's inquiry into the matter, there were some who were against it, saying that taking part in the investigation was an implicit admission of responsibility.

But Riccitiello, one of the higher-profile industry figures to attend the hearing, disagrees - not because he thinks games might be responsible for causing violence, but because he believes it's necessary to actively fight the belief that they do.

"There's been an enormous amount of research done in the entertainment field about looking for linkages between entertainment content and actual violence, and they haven't found any," he told analysts during an earnings forecast conference call.

"I could give you long stories about how people in Denmark or the UK or Ireland or Canada consume as much or more violent games and violent media as they do in the United States, and yet they have an infinitely smaller incidence of gun violence, but that's not really the point," he said. "The point is that direct studies that have been done, hundreds of millions of dollars of research that has been done has been unable to find a linkage because there isn't one."

But despite the utter absence of evidence that videogames are damaging and the U.S. Supreme Court's decision to affirm the First Amendment rights of the medium, a significant portion of the general public remains unconvinced. That's the battle that Riccitiello believes the industry must now fight.

"Having said all of that and with all - if you will - humility about the world we live in, we understand that while there may not be an actual problem, given all the finger-pointing going on in the press, there appears to be the perception of a problem, and we do have to wrestle with that," he said. "Ours is an industry with an association that has risen to that call many times before, and will, as we move forward. We're responsible, we're mature, we intend to be part of the solution."

Sources: Develop, BBC

Permalink

Andy Chalk:

But despite the utter absence of evidence

Sorry, I had to. Just kidding though. I guess its good that these studies exist and that they seem to want to stand up the the finger pointing media.

Well, at least he isn't COMPLETELY retarded. Though I get the feeling he only cares because video games make him money.

Oh crap, I agree with Riccitiello.

Evidence or not, we don't have any substantial evidence either way but the games industry has to fight as if it is trying to denounce secondhand smoke.

Perception is more important than facts in America. It's also especially more important in politics.

???? How the hell did that troll say something that intelligent? OK people we need to brace for the rebound effect the next thing he says in public will be the most brain damaged thing you have ever heard in your entire life and make you feel like the whole world if full of morons who believe him.

For once, I'm agreeing with him. The problem is that, when people hold a belief this strongly -- that violence in video games transfers into real life violence -- then it's near impossible to reason with them. It's like telling a cigarette smoker not to smoke because it's bad for them: they understand it is but won't change their habits. As long as people with cooler heads prevail, and the industry itself isn't pulling back, this will all boil over.

Well at least I can agree with that guy on something. Surely if no such link exists than any inquiry would reveal such and anyone whose confident enough that no such link exists shouldn't have a problem with such an inquiry.

Today:- I hear gun related violence was big before video games were introduced. I guess violent video games must be the cause of the problem then.

Yesteryear:- I hear gun related violence was big before movies were introduced. I guess violent movies must be the cause of the problem then.

Lets face it, the second amendment needs to be amended. It was written for a time post war and needs to be re-written for a modern America. Can't blame entertainment forever, and entertainment can't blame media either. That's like blaming everyone with an opinion that they're the problem.

Well if there is one videogame company that knows about negative perception, it would be EA.

AT God:
Oh crap, I agree with Riccitiello.

Evidence or not, we don't have any substantial evidence either way but the games industry has to fight as if it is trying to denounce secondhand smoke.

Quoted for truth. I was always a supported of the argument of someone being less than healthy to begin with if they can honestly say "I saw it in a game" to justify negative actions. However,the prospect of having to overcome such ingrained confirmation bias in the world's news media is quite the order. True,metal and comics did it,but,to my knowledge,we have the unfortunate reality of having so many atrocities attached to our passtime,many of which are recent. The ostriches of the media can easily deflect our valid counterarguments with "Look at Oslo. The guy that did that said he trained with Call of Duty." or something similar. And to them,that's the end of it. How can we sway such firmly rooted perceptions without making them feel like they were right?

Yikes how bad is it when you can actually agree with Riccitiello? Well at least his self interest coincides with mine in this case. Tip of the hat Riccitiello, but I still have my eyes on you.

Well said, Riccitiello...?

Man, that combination of words sounds weird.

MPerce:
Well said, Riccitiello...?

Man, that combination of words sounds weird.

I know. Don't you hate it when someone you despise says something intelligent and reasonable?

pfft... the gun lobby is just trying to pass the buck onto other different forms of media so that gun rights and more importantly gun sales aren't affected.

You want to tackle the Violent video games perception Ricciteillo?

Start at the source of it which is the apologists at the NRA.

As others said, I'm astonished that Riccitiello managed to say something pretty cool for once. Perhaps this is a shift in his whole philosophy! Perhaps he will get rid of shady business practices and become a beacon of hope for all things video games! Or, perhaps we're in the Matrix, and this is just a glitch.
Or maybe he just likes his money.
Probably the money thing.

There must be something wrong in the universe because I actually agree with something Riccitiello said.

While there isn't a link between video games and the violence problem we have in an age where people want to point the finger at everything except their cause I think the game industry has to stand up for itself. If the game industry remains silent then people just go "see, see, they are guilty because they don't have a response to our wild accusations!".

John Riccitiello is speaking. Quick grab the torches and pitchforks!
Wait.... what is he saying? Oh...

Good on you Riccitiello, I'm not sure if I agree, purely because I don't think I'm capable of agreeing with you.
It's a defense mechanism, nothing personal. I'll just reason it as the enemy of my enemy is my friend.

Mojo:

Andy Chalk:

But despite the utter absence of evidence

Sorry, I had to. Just kidding though. I guess its good that these studies exist and that they seem to want to stand up the the finger pointing media.

Ah,how I enjoyed that show....But taht aside,well, what do you know, he speaks the truth for once....Am I going nuts again?

What alternate universe did I fall into, Riccitiello is actually speaking some fucking sense?

Ah yes I agree with EA but I agree with 60-70% of what EA says but... what they do about it is different lest we forget

AT God:
Oh crap, I agree with Riccitiello.

Evidence or not, we don't have any substantial evidence either way but the games industry has to fight as if it is trying to denounce secondhand smoke.

Actually, when you have that much research showing no connection between the violence and violent media, you have substantial evidence that video games don't cause violence.

I can't believe that Riccitiello said something I completely agree with. These are crazy times.

Well, he also thinks Medal of Honor: Warfighter's critical reception was a perception problem. Nothing against his stance on violence, but he's not exactly the type that would willingly submit to the truth if it goes against the interest of his company.

We're responsible, we're mature

Look at the Dead Space video above.

Aikayai:
Today:- I hear gun related violence was big before video games were introduced. I guess violent video games must be the cause of the problem then.

Yesteryear:- I hear gun related violence was big before movies were introduced. I guess violent movies must be the cause of the problem then.

Lets face it, the second amendment needs to be amended. It was written for a time post war and needs to be re-written for a modern America. Can't blame entertainment forever, and entertainment can't blame media either. That's like blaming everyone with an opinion that they're the problem.

They are blaming entertainment because the real culprits got our representatives and media in their pocket. I am of course speaking of the legal prescription drugs and the mental health institution. You shouldn't be worried about taking guns away from people who want to protect themselves because criminals and those involved in mass shootings are usually mentally unbalanced and they don't have registered guns. They will get the guns illegally regardless of what rights you take away from people.

Anywho I am starting to digress but I just wish people would educate themselves on the real problem and not just follow the line of bread crumbs that the media is trying to lead you towards so you can become a carrier pigeon of their propaganda.

Wait This is the SAME Riccitiello EA CEO that runs Electronic Arts in this Universe??
Am I daydreaming Or will there be >unforseen consequences<???

OMG! *max. confused*

Aikayai:
Today:- I hear gun related violence was big before video games were introduced. I guess violent video games must be the cause of the problem then.

Yesteryear:- I hear gun related violence was big before movies were introduced. I guess violent movies must be the cause of the problem then.

Lets face it, the second amendment needs to be amended. It was written for a time post war and needs to be re-written for a modern America. Can't blame entertainment forever, and entertainment can't blame media either. That's like blaming everyone with an opinion that they're the problem.

How would you amend it and why? And before you answer that question try your hand at this one: What is the purpose of the Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America?

Do you happen to know the statistics for how many violent crimes involving guns are carried out with legally purchased and possessed firearms? How many use illegally obtained firearms? How about how many firearms laws there currently are and how well are they enforced?

The Second Amendment is no more the problem than TV, Movies, Video games or Music are. Take away the right to arm ourselves and you take away our ability to defend ourselves and our families.

And remember this one thing, "Any time someone says there ought to be a law, there most likely shouldn't be." Laws are powerful things and if they are written hastily and without consideration of unintended consequences we can find our freedoms slipping away.

First they came for the communists,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a communist.

Then they came for the socialists,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a socialist.

Then they came for the trade unionists,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a trade unionist.

Then they came for the Jews,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a Jew.

Then they came for the Catholics,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a Catholic.

Then they came for me,
and there was no one left to speak for me.

I've got a bit of a love-hate relationship with this guy...

He says such smart, intelligent and well reasoned things.
He does such stupid, retarded and idiotic things.

Riticello is absolutely right here. The more gamers scream, whine, stomp on the floor and run to their bomb proof closets every time violence and videogames are mentioned in the same sentence, the worse things are going to become. We all know there is nothing more than coincidental linkage between violent games and acts of extreme violence. We all know what redeeming qualities games do have. We should be willing to stand up and trumpet those facts from the rooftops. If that means going to the table in government or the media, so be it. We don't have anything to hide.

Scorpid:
Ah yes I agree with EA but I agree with 60-70% of what EA says but... what they do about it is different lest we forget

This is my problem, he goes and makes statements as the ones shown in the article here that i completly agree with.
But then i remember that EA shitty Marketing and PR are one of the main things that have fueled the 'Violent games' discussion for years.

It's Bizarro Riccitiello!

Now I'll just wait for him to announce a return to producing innovative single player games that focus on perfecting their genre. Go on my son!

Zachary Amaranth:
Perception is more important than facts in America. It's also especially more important in politics.

Not to forget America's legal system. When someone is getting convicted with almost substantial evidence, then it is also about 'perception' or, so a spineless lawyer would say.

Ken Sapp:

Aikayai:
Today:- I hear gun related violence was big before video games were introduced. I guess violent video games must be the cause of the problem then.

Yesteryear:- I hear gun related violence was big before movies were introduced. I guess violent movies must be the cause of the problem then.

Lets face it, the second amendment needs to be amended. It was written for a time post war and needs to be re-written for a modern America. Can't blame entertainment forever, and entertainment can't blame media either. That's like blaming everyone with an opinion that they're the problem.

How would you amend it and why? And before you answer that question try your hand at this one: What is the purpose of the Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America?

Do you happen to know the statistics for how many violent crimes involving guns are carried out with legally purchased and possessed firearms? How many use illegally obtained firearms? How about how many firearms laws there currently are and how well are they enforced?

The Second Amendment is no more the problem than TV, Movies, Video games or Music are. Take away the right to arm ourselves and you take away our ability to defend ourselves and our families.

And remember this one thing, "Any time someone says there ought to be a law, there most likely shouldn't be." Laws are powerful things and if they are written hastily and without consideration of unintended consequences we can find our freedoms slipping away.

I'm sorry but I don't think you look at crime statistics outside the US. I live in the UK and have no problem "defending" my home, nor do we have over 8000 gun crimes reported every year. Even Russia has a better gun record...

If I had my way, firearms would only be obtainable with a licence and armed forces training as a minimum requirement. The second amendment can be amended for the modern age, no matter what some 70 year old politician says. Remember the french during the first world war? They charged cavalry, men on horseback, into machine gun fire because their Generals were too attached to the old way of fighting. Modern military tactics were developed and rules of engagement changed. So why can't the second amendment?

Not owning a gun doesn't make you any less manly, or any less able to defend your homes from any invaders. Why is it unreasonable that the right to bear arms could be changed to war time only? Or that firearms over a certain caliber be outlawed? If you really need a gun that badly, why do you need an M16 over a 9mm? These things no one is willing to address, so nut cases are free to rampage when they please and destroy the livelihoods of the individual, people like you or me.

Until someone is brave enough to stand up to the gun cabinet in government, these problems are going to continue until one day a potential Einstein or Hubble is killed and America is the only loser when that happens.

Says the guy making Military Shooters left and right... Military Space 3, Military Effect 3, Militarystrike and Medal of Honor: Brown People Fighter.

Aikayai:

If I had my way, firearms would only be obtainable with a licence and armed forces training as a minimum requirement.

So what about those of us who have issues with joining a military but just want to hunt? Do we have to go against our some of our beliefs and possibly kill people just to have the right to hunt animals on our own property?

The second amendment can be amended for the modern age, no matter what some 70 year old politician says. Remember the french during the first world war? They charged cavalry, men on horseback, into machine gun fire because their Generals were too attached to the old way of fighting. Modern military tactics were developed and rules of engagement changed. So why can't the second amendment?

You can't really compare the evolution of military tactics to gun control. Military tactics had to evolve to accommodate new technology like tanks, machine guns, and the like. However, guns haven't evolved; they are still point barrel pull trigger, the only differences between guns today as compared to a century ago is accuracy and how many bullets are shot. That said, gun control has never been perfect and I don't think it ever will be. ...I honestly don't have a good answer to this part.

Not owning a gun doesn't make you any less manly, or any less able to defend your homes from any invaders.

I don't know. My place has a lot of big rooms and the only weapons I have are a shotgun and a dulled katana. If I had to defend my home against an intruder with a gun I'd probably end up dead because gun-toting baddie+open area+you with katana=death.

Why is it unreasonable that the right to bear arms could be changed to war time only?

Because criminals who don't obey gun laws now won't obey them then, while law-abiding citizens will. Suddenly, all the criminals have guns and all the citizens who are their victims don't.

Or that firearms over a certain caliber be outlawed? If you really need a gun that badly, why do you need an M16 over a 9mm?

OK, that one is reasonable. I've never understood the need for the "big stuff" anyways.

These things no one is willing to address, so nut cases are free to rampage when they please and destroy the livelihoods of the individual, people like you or me.

Please, nut cases have been doing this for a long time before guns entered the picture.

Oh Christ, this thread has already devolved into a pro-gun/anti-gun argument. At least it's remaining relatviely civil, but it won't take long for it to go downhill. (Yay for optimism!)

Anyway, most here seem to be equally confused as to why it's coming from Riccitiello as opposed to, y'know, someone sane. In fact, my first, instinctual thought was that "Oh, he's trying to claw back some credibility and dignity." Hardly shocking, but I certainly agree with him. I did think that not participating in tests just makes us look like we have something to hide.

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