Official Says GTA V District Could Ruin Reputation of Real Town

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Official Says GTA V District Could Ruin Reputation of Real Town

GTA V neighborhood's "druggie hipster vibe" isn't a good look for a Scottish town, could damage tourism.

Local officials from the Scottish city of Hawick have a bone to pick with Rockstar Games and Grand Theft Auto V. According to the representatives, using the name in the new game "could destroy" the town, misrepresenting it to the world and killing tourism.

In the real world, Hawick is a town known for its wool and their rugby team. In GTA V's city of Los Santos, there just happens to be an area also named Hawick: It's a neighborhood known for its dilapidated appearance and "drug addict hipster vibe."

Hawick is located south of Edinburgh, where Rockstar makes the Grand Theft Auto series. GTA games often include references to the studio Scottish heritage, including location names. Needless to say, Hawick councillor David Paterson is not amused by the shout-out:

"I am absolutely disgusted - there is a lot of history and a lot of good things happening in the town," he said. "We have got a lot of good things planned for this coming year. It is going to destroy the good reputation of the town."

Meanwhile, Scottish parliament member John Lamont has taken a more diplomatic approach, inviting Rockstar execs to meet and discuss the ramifications of their choice.

"I, like many other Hawick residents, was shocked to hear that the name of the town had been used in Grand Theft Auto V," said Lamont. "Not only is it a game which includes violence, sex and drugs, but the game's producers themselves describe the area of Hawick in the game as having a 'drug addict hipster vibe'. While some may take the view that any publicity is good publicity, I am sure that many local residents will see this as an insensitive move from Rockstar North. The game undoubtedly portrays Hawick in a bad light and is likely to sell tens of millions of copies over the next year."

Lamont added that, based on their use of the name, the team at Rockstar "clearly do not know Hawick well."

Source: BBC South Scotland

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I had never heard of Hawick before this so well done to David Paterson to alerting the world to this, I'm sure everyone will keep quiet about it.

Now, there's a few ways for me to examine this story:

1) Rockstar did add in Hawick for the hell of it and didn't consider whether it was possible that there would be a real impact on the perception of the community (most unlikely option, IMO);

2) Hawick officials are using the 'violent video game is bad' message to score some more political points, which, considering there would've been other references to other Scottish cities in previous games as this article claims, makes more sense given GTA V's rising popularity;

3) Being from around the area, maybe Rockstar's making a commentary on what Hawick is actually like, which is hard to say considering I live across the ocean and know jack shit about what local regions are like.

I am leaning more so to either options 2 or 3, but I won't rule out option 1 just yet...

Just because it's like something in a game it doesn't mean a place that happens to share its name is actually like that. It also doesn't mean there's any real connection other than names.

Ha

Yes I agree GTA misrepresents the real world Hawick.

GTA Hawick has sunshine, rather than just rain and clouds.

And "drug addict hipster" isn't necessary worse than "drunken brawlers that piss on their own front doors".

Don't these politicians have something important to do? No? Right, my bad, they're politicians. Scottish politicians at that. It's cute that they think they have a voice.

Jamous:
Just because it's like something in a game it doesn't mean a place that happens to share its name is actually like that. It also doesn't mean there's any real connection other than names.

I don't know. Pretty much every Guilford I've ever been to is the same. I suspect they mass produce them, but the point remains.

I know Hawick, it's a depressing little grey town near Selkirk, on the way to Innerleithen (which is an awesome place). Vaguely interesting old buildings on the high street, nice scenery nearby because it's Scotland. Nothing of note, no GTA player will ever make the connection between it and Hawick Los Santos.

This is nothing but a cynical maneuver by a small time politician to drum up some exposure on the back of something infinitely larger than himself. Nobody knew Hawick was named after a Scottish town before, about an hour after reading this nobody will care and Lamont and Paterson will have to think up some other way to get their names in the papers.

So if Game A uses the name "Greensburg" for one of the towns in the game, then all places in the real world that happen to share this name -hundreds in the U.S. it is the name of at least a street or neighborhood in every state nearly- are going to take personal offence and feel it is misrepresenting them?

It is just a NAME people... calm down.

fix-the-spade:
I know Hawick, it's a depressing little grey town near Selkirk, on the way to Innerleithen (which is an awesome place). Vaguely interesting old buildings on the high street, nice scenery nearby because it's Scotland. Nothing of note, no GTA player will ever make the connection between it and Hawick Los Santos.

I don't know man. You never know what kind of people will now shy away from a small Scottish town for fear of hispanic ganglords :P

Micalas:
I don't know man. You never know what kind of people will now shy away from a small Scottish town for fear of hispanic ganglords :P

I'd be more worried about getting waylaid by Alex Salmond running around with his Claymore yelling freeeeeeddooooommm!!!. Much scarier.

This is a stupid thing to get angry about. My families' last name is in Red Dead Redemption, going by this logic I should be angry at Rockstar for using my last name in such a barren place.

fix-the-spade:

Micalas:
I don't know man. You never know what kind of people will now shy away from a small Scottish town for fear of hispanic ganglords :P

I'd be more worried about getting waylaid by Alex Salmond running around with his Claymore yelling freeeeeeddooooommm!!!. Much scarier.

I'd be more worried about Hawick, Los Santos's reputation getting ruined by people thinking it's crawling with Groundskeeper Willy-like stereotypes

I seriously doubt most people would've made the connection and of those who did notice I'd wager most of them would think it little more than a coincidence and then move on with their lives without even thinking there'd be any similarity between the two places. Newsflash: names tend to not be all that unique.

Or it could just be that they thought it would sound kinda like Havoc since everyone already pronounces it Havic.

But whatever happened to "any similarities or likenesses to real people etc....." being valid.

I live in Scotland, have done all my life and I could not possibly have even told you that Hawick existed nevermind where it was. Also, it most certainly isn't a city as the 2nd paragraph of the article said.

I don't think there is an appropriate amount of time I could say,"Really?" over how stupid a notion that just because a place in a game has the same name people will think the real place is like that. #u(%ing Stupid.

Yup, GTA V will totally destroy the reputation of a tiny 15,000 person town that 99% of the world has never heard of or cares about.

Though to be fair, the game was developed by Rockstar North, which is based in Edinburgh, so I doubt it was a coincidence.

Did GTA IV ruin tourism for New York? No? Pardon me if I think you're talking out of your ass.

PlasmaCow:
I live in Scotland, have done all my life and I could not possibly have even told you that Hawick existed nevermind where it was. Also, it most certainly isn't a city as the 2nd paragraph of the article said.

I live in Edinburgh and I had no idea it existed either :/

This reminds me of a the time a town called Batman (no seriously its in Turkey) wanted to sue Christopher Nolan
http://www.pastemagazine.com/articles/2008/11/turkish-town-batman-sues-christopher-nolan.html

Tallim:

PlasmaCow:
I live in Scotland, have done all my life and I could not possibly have even told you that Hawick existed nevermind where it was. Also, it most certainly isn't a city as the 2nd paragraph of the article said.

I live in Edinburgh and I had no idea it existed either :/

Ditto. Haw-where?

At first I thought this was an Onion article.

Have these townspeople ever come to think that this is a FICTIONAL REPRESENTATION of a fictional city in a game? I see what this cannot do to the Scottish town. Just laugh it off and go about your day, Mayor of Hawick.

I think the English should be more outraged about New England besmirching their good name. Honestly, who wants to be associated with a bunch of sweater-clad yuppies?

Being from Hawick I can assure you that dilapidated and drug addicts are definitely words that come to mind when thinking of the place.

I don't care. I'm not an idiot who thinks that a fictional place in a game is an accurate representation of a real place that's not even in the same country as the fictional place.

I've never heard of the place and never knew it was real until now.
I guess we're just not allowed to use the real names of places anymore. Everything should be "ZKjsvduw89ef2384t$sville" so no one is offended ever.

I live in Scotland and I've never heard of Hawick until this, so technically its improved its reputation hasn't it?

Damnit. According to popular media Hawick was the last place I could go for a quiet holiday, after South England was lost to all those Rage virus zombies, that Cloverfield monster sacked New York, Cardiff being invaded by rubbery aliens every other week, San Francisco was attacked by that nerve gas from Alcatraz, the whole of Australia turned into a post apocalyptic wasteland, Italy got covered in poisonous Tiberium pollution from that asteroid, those Antartic research bases are just lousy with shapeshifting aliens, and Sleepy Hollow's still got a skull filled tree in it that leads straight to Hell.

I always loved my little stays in peaceful Hawick, but as I've now been reliably informed by this videogame that there was a place called Hawick in a completely fictional world and it had social issues, I shall never return in case I catch the Hipster virus.

I can't comment specifically on Hawick, but based on my copious research of Danny Boyle films (specifically Shallow Grave and Trainspotting), I know that Scotland is a place as morally bankrupt, hyperviolent, and drug addled as anything depicted in GTA.

JonB:
I think the English should be more outraged about New England besmirching their good name. Honestly, who wants to be associated with a bunch of sweater-clad yuppies?

We begrudgingly accept that we don't have Clam Chowder. It's give and take, give and take.

Michael Epstein:

"I, like many other Hawick residents, was shocked to hear that the name of the town had been used in Grand Theft Auto V," said Lamont, drawing heavily on his huge, lit joint; and twirling his 9mm pistol.

if anything, it will bring more tourists. who wouldnt want to visit a place they drove around in GTA?
also i never heard of this town before. now i did. thanks to GTA 5. so your wrong mr city official.

Also you know there is a town called "Hell" in Norway. do we give it a bad name every time we go to hell in games?

Strazdas:
if anything, it will bring more tourists. who wouldnt want to visit a place they drove around in GTA?
also i never heard of this town before. now i did. thanks to GTA 5. so your wrong mr city official.

Also you know there is a town called "Hell" in Norway. do we give it a bad name every time we go to hell in games?

Same here, although the fact the place has shown that their a bunch of dicks has probably removed any chance I would visit, so their acts rather than Rockstar has done the damage. Funny since they could have capitalized on it.

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