Games Journalism! Wainwright/Florence/Tomb Raider/Eurogamer/Libel Threats/Doritos

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snap0212

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See! What did I tell you? We can't win! :D
Well, it is sad that you guys don't write an article not because you don't deem the topic interesting enough but because you assume many people aren't interested (which means not enough hits, pretty much) and because you don't want to waste ressources on this. What's even more sad is that you'd consider it a story worth writing about were it just as different time of the year.
 

dannyodwyer

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It comes down to one person whispering is louder than a thousand people remaining in silence.
Wha? Who's whispering? Is it me?
Or am I one of the silent ones?
What about all folks who posted articles? Are they whispering too? Or are they all one person.

This thread is getting silly. I'm off to lunch.
 

Mama Robotnik

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Its not a development exactly, more something indicative of cowardly supposed journalists unwilling to get involved:

Chris Schilling is the self-described gaming critic (Twitter account here) and he has done work for The Guardian, Eurogamer, PC Gamer and many others.

His Twitter feed interaction with Rab over the last day involves heartlessly telling him to "move on" despite the fact that Rab lost his Eurogamer position less than twenty four hours ago. When veteran UK game dev Ste Pickford encourages Chris to actually write about the events - Chris declines. Rab responds with a seemingly exacerbated "Oh Chris".



You can really see how uncomfortable this entire furor makes some supposed journalists. Their utter inability to raise discussion or significant commentary over such a significant story, strongly suggests collective cowardice and/or editorial doctrine.
 

PaulLFC

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Wha? Who's whispering? Is it me?
Or am I one of the silent ones?
What about all folks who posted articles? Are they whispering too? Or are they all one person.

This thread is getting silly. I'm off to lunch.
The ones posting articles are the only ones attempting to expose this for what it is and bring people's attention to it. Saying "we're discussing it on Twitter so it doesn't need an article" and then saying "We're not doing an article because not enough people care" is just silly. For starters we don't know how many people care or don't, but have you thought about why those that don't care perhaps don't? See my last post:

I understand what you're saying, but I still think the "99% of our audience don't give a crap" thing is untested if there aren't articles on high traffic sites. If one was posted, maybe they would. If they never read about it, because the issue is confined to personal blogs which don't get as much traffic, or isolated to Twitter, then they won't give a crap, because they haven't been educated about it. Education is the first step. As soon as people learn about it, they'll care.

I've been gaming since I can remember, but years ago, did I care about stuff like this? Probably not, I don't remember doing anyway. That was solely because I wasn't aware of the issue - I was probably too young for a start. Games to me back then were just that, I didn't have an awareness of the industry and surrounding topics until I got older and started reading about it.

Now I know about it, I care. I'm guessing it'd be the same for most people. Educate them and they'll start taking an interest in the issue.
My view is that it is precisely because of attitudes like this "They won't care so we won't report it" - if you don't report it, why should they care? In fact, how could they care, when there are no articles on the sites they visit to draw their attention to the issue, to possibly make them care?
 

Victrix

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You can really see how uncomfortable this entire furor makes some supposed journalists. Their utter inability to raise discussion or significant commentary over such a significant story, strongly suggests collective cowardice and/or editorial doctrine.
Jesus that is ugly
 

carfo

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This has been going on for years and it takes a picture of Geoff with some soda and chips to spark the fire?
 

Htown

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Wha? Who's whispering? Is it me?
Or am I one of the silent ones?
What about all folks who posted articles? Are they whispering too? Or are they all one person.

This thread is getting silly. I'm off to lunch.
Okay. The thread is getting silly, though there are some posters who have done more to inform people about this situation (by taking ten minutes to summarize the story for other posters for no reward) than most major games news sites have over the last 24 hours. The thread is getting silly, though there are posters in here who have done more actual investigation in the last 24 hours than most of games writers have done in the last year.

So who are the games journalists again?
 

Dibbz

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Wha? Who's whispering? Is it me?
Or am I one of the silent ones?
What about all folks who posted articles? Are they whispering too? Or are they all one person.

This thread is getting silly. I'm off to lunch.
No you are talking to your circle of friend about how this circle of friends mentality is counter productive to your own jobs. Which is a ok in your book it seems.

Do you not see how dumb this looks?

This is precisely the problem. That guy cannot comment because he is friends with both parties. Can't stick his pen in the ground and stand by it. Has to make sure everyone is happy and just skirt around huge issues.

This is how majority of gaming journalists look from the outside. One big circle jerk.
 

Ath

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I did expect more of the big gaming sites to be reporting on this by now. I mean, the furore alone should prove that this is of massive interest as a news story and that more people should know about it. That more of the big sites haven't been doing so strikes me as quite depressing.
 

Jackpot

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UK libel laws are most likely to blame here.
No they aren't. They aren't as one-sided as you seem to think. No one forced Eurogamer to cave so easily. That's on them.

edit: jesus



The last tweet exemplifies exactly what Rab was talking about. What a goddamn pussy.
 

gofreak

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Jun 8, 2004
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You can really see how uncomfortable this entire furor makes some supposed journalists. Their utter inability to raise discussion or significant commentary over such a significant story, strongly suggests collective cowardice and/or editorial doctrine.

I think in this case he's uncomfortable because of personal relationships with both parties. Which is understandable enough.

Although he did seem happy enough to finger-wag a little at Florence, I guess.
 

McBradders

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Follow the money!

(Needs a Jeff Gerstmann/Bombcast gif but it's literally all that's been going through my head reading the latest posts in this thread)
 

cameron

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You can really see how uncomfortable this entire furor makes some supposed journalists. Their utter inability to raise discussion or significant commentary over such a significant story, strongly suggests collective cowardice and/or editorial doctrine.
Amusing how the dude couldn't resist the urge to tell people to move on, but starts squirming the moment he gets called out on it.
 

ClosingADoor

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I did expect more of the big gaming sites to be reporting on this by now. I mean, the furore alone should prove that this is of massive interest as a news story and that more people should know about it. That more of the big sites haven't been doing so strikes me as quite depressing.
What exactly do you want them to report? There is some videogame journalist drama, it isn't exactly interesting for the mainstream audience that those bigger sites write for.
 

Margalis

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There are plenty of us talking about it on twitter if you want unofficial quotes - or read our posts in this very thread. Most of us have been preaching to the choir about this stuff for years.
Maybe things would change if instead of posting "r u guyz cereal??!? HNGNGHGNGH" on Twitter you approached it in a way that conveyed some seriousness.

Just a thought.

Quite frankly "most of you" have not been preaching about this in public in any medium. I anything most of you immediately circle the wagons every time something like this comes up.
 

Corto

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No you are talking to your circle of friend about how this circle of friends mentality is counter productive to your own jobs. Which is a ok in your book it seems.

Do you not see how dumb this looks?



This is precisely the problem. That guy cannot comment because he is friends with both parties. Can't stick his pen in the ground and stand by it. Has to make sure everyone is happy and just skirt around huge issues.

This is how majority of gaming journalists look from the outside. One big circle jerk.
Singling out individuals is meaningless (edit: and it was what damned Rab in the first place). The reaction to this needs to be transversal to games writers on different outlets. The system of PR dependency is completely established and people that will write about this need to be cautious about this stuff because it's not just a matter of their own jobs on the line it's the whole outlet employees livelihood on the line. It's easy for us as anonymous forumers to google people, their professional and personal connections and post them in here as we don't have nothing at stake. Even Rab in his original article was pretty much cautious and exerted more prudence than that.
 

Ponn

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See! What did I tell you? We can't win! :D
I think gaming "Journalists" could start winning by remembering the journalist part of their title. The disturbing trend of gaming journalists has come to light alot more lately and the responses and defenses have been a bit appalling. Like the Amazon/Nintendo debacle that continues to go unreported and researched, the sheer laziness with responses from a so called journalist being "Well we asked Amazon and they said no comment so we didn't want to push them and make them angry and lose our valuable source"

Are you fucking kidding me?! Yea great source you have there, what did you hit the contact customer service button at the bottom of the main screen? And I also keep seeing another poor excuse keep popping up "Well the majority of readers don't want to read about this" As a journalist, your job is to report the news. Not to decide what to spoon feed your audience. When you start with the spoon feeding you have an agenda and that makes me question your integrity. And if your whole audience doesn't find a critical thinking article worthy of alot of hits at first thats on you. When you have been feeding them mcdonalds their whole life and you try to give them some veggies and they revolt tno one else to blame but your shitty low brow reporting. Doesn't mean you throw your hands up and say "Welp I tried" it means you act like a journalist and keep reporting the news. Instead of the billionth Top Ten whatever list.
 

Risible

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This has been going on for years and it takes a picture of Geoff with some soda and chips to spark the fire?
That's the most amazing thing about all this. It's an amazing string of coincidences. I'm dubbing it "The Perfect shitStorm."™

It starts with something as innocuous as the photo of Geoff, that has been circulating for quite a while now with no incidence. Things start to get stirred up r.e. games journalism and Rab decides to write an article. He happens by chance call out the one person who has easily verified ties to a company she has written about extensively. That person makes mention of libel and the parent company of Rab just panics and censors him. Wainright panics and starts a Nixon-like deletion campaign. It's just a string of coincidences and bad decisions.
 
D

Deleted member 30609

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This seems super embarrassing for the weird, incestual UK gaming press
 

aeolist

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The big problem here is that the people who are defending atheistium don't understand Rab's point to begin with.

He's not saying she and others doing the same sorts of things are corrupt, and the quotes were not supposed to prove that. He's saying that doing such things gives the appearance of nepotism and as press that's something one should avoid at all costs.

The "she's just a fan of the series" defense doesn't work either, because if you want to be a reporter then one of the things you are choosing to give up is the ability to act like a big fan publicly.
 
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I think the only way it can happen is if readers start exclusively funding the writers covering games.

At the moment the money trail in 'games journalism' predominantly leads back to games publishers. They treat games journalism as an extension of their marketing dept, and unfortunately there are writers who get their purpose confused, and who are flattered to be a cog in that machine or who feel they are indebted to games publishers. In fact it looks like some rookie writers have their position as a writer advanced by publishers (by way of exclusive access etc.) only to then feel they have to support the publisher in turn (see: Laura Wainwright, 'I love you Korina!' etc.)

I mean, think about that. Games publishers are effectively 'planting' drones among new generations of writers by helping them along their career paths.

Actually makes me think of a site like Polygon...with so many established names, they could have broken out and tried an alternative funding method.
This is an interesting article about money and games journalism (title doesn't mean what you think). Here's a quote on how the money situation worked with published magazines (as opposed to the free sites we get now):

(Please don't kill me RevStu.)
 
D

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Yes, it is literally only the UK press that is in such a state.
No, but it's certainly where the spotlight is being shined at the moment. But, hey, you're right, it isn't like it's much better anywhere else.
 

snap0212

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What exactly do you want them to report? There is some videogame journalist drama, it isn't exactly interesting for the mainstream audience that those bigger sites write for.
I may be wrong about this but weren't the Gertsmann stories ridiculously huge back then? So saying "no one's interested" might not be true. Again; I could be wrong about this.
 

SolidSnakex

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No, but it's certainly where the spotlight is being shined at the moment. But, hey, you're right, it isn't like it's much better anywhere else.
It's where the spotlight is, but it speaks volumes that so many US gaming sites don't want to touch this story.
 

PaulLFC

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What exactly do you want them to report? There is some videogame journalist drama, it isn't exactly interesting for the mainstream audience that those bigger sites write for.
Oh dear. Are you seriously telling me that the wider issue here isn't of interest? Why exactly do you think such a huge issue isn't of interest? I'm intrigued.
 

Clear

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What worries me is the amount of play this is getting compared to that ex-CVG journo who went on a Twitter rampage only a few weeks ago describing in no uncertain terms how corrupt Future publications are, and how he had seen on multiple occasions review scores being manipulated satisfy PR people.

I can't even remember the guy's name now. How sad.

One of these cases blows the whistle on long-standing institutionalized payola, and the other is a minor spat between two journos... hmmmm....
 

hammster

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What worries me is the amount of play this is getting compared to that ex-CVG journo who went on a Twitter rampage only a few weeks ago describing in no uncertain terms how corrupt Future publications are, and how he had seen on multiple occasions review scores being manipulated satisfy PR people.

I can't even remember the guy's name now. How sad.

One of these cases blows the whistle on long-standing institutionalized payola, and the other is a minor spat between two journos... hmmmm....
Rich Stanton.
 

PaulLFC

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What worries me is the amount of play this is getting compared to that ex-CVG journo who went on a Twitter rampage only a few weeks ago describing in no uncertain terms how corrupt Future publications are, and how he had seen on multiple occasions review scores being manipulated satisfy PR people.

I can't even remember the guy's name now. How sad.

One of these cases blows the whistle on long-standing institutionalized payola, and the other is a minor spat between two journos... hmmmm....
While I agree, whatever brings more attention to this problem is a good thing.
 

Corto

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What worries me is the amount of play this is getting compared to that ex-CVG journo who went on a Twitter rampage only a few weeks ago describing in no uncertain terms how corrupt Future publications are, and how he had seen on multiple occasions review scores being manipulated satisfy PR people.

I can't even remember the guy's name now. How sad.

One of these cases blows the whistle on long-standing institutionalized payola, and the other is a minor spat between two journos... hmmmm....
He partially retracted from his rant afterwards. And even tried to put the onus on GAF for believing in an one disgruntled man rant without trying to confirm his accusations. To his (dis)credit though, he was drunk.
 

Clear

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hammster said:
Rich Stanton.
PaulLFC said:
While I agree, whatever brings more attention to this problem is a good thing.
Thanks guys.

But don't you think that the reaction between these two stories is wildly disproportionate to the seriousness of the actual issue?

I almost hate to say it, but it feels a bit stage-managed to me. An institutional issue has been turned into a very personal one between two (no disrespect to Rab) fringe players on the scene.

Eurogamer (did) employ both these guys, and lets face it, they are one of the most tabloidy (in terms of editorial and approach) gaming sites around.
 

funkystudent

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Any updates this morning?

MVC main any comment or has she come out of hiding to make a apology?


Also LOL @ Chilling and "just move on"

oh and

"Chris Chilling ‏@schillingc
@Davies_S_Neuro I'm not telling Rob to move on. And he left of his own volition. I'm not writing because I'm too close to those involved.


Well duh... thats the whole point of this clusterfuck.


Man. If people think US game writiers are a joke I hope this shows how useless the UK press have been. Outside of one or 2 guys its just worse in every way possible. I would say the relationship between the press and PR is even tighter. And also since the industry is smaller everyone is a bit more cut throat and you have less of a sense of comradeship you see from a lot of US guys.
 

Dibbz

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One of these cases blows the whistle on long-standing institutionalized payola, and the other is a minor spat between two journos... hmmmm....
It's more than that. It's about how the gaming media is now an extension of PR and marketing for gaming publishers. They gladly take freebies and in return will market and advertise whatever these big companies want them to do. It's a pretty big problem and is more than just a spat between two people.

This just begs the question why should we trust these people? Who are they ultimately writing for? Publishers or consumers?
 

FlutterPuffs

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Let's leave the guys who got gifts after doing the OT alone. It isn't journalism, and all they did is a thread about a game they loved.

I would've taken the gifts in a heartbeat.
 

Ath

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What exactly do you want them to report? There is some videogame journalist drama, it isn't exactly interesting for the mainstream audience that those bigger sites write for.
Perhaps something similar to the Forbes article, A summary of the events, with some commentary on them. Some mention about the UK's libel laws and how it led to the allegations that legal action against Eurogamer was threatened, and what this story says about the current state of video games journalism.

I dunno, I personally thought that these events were bringing out issues that need to be given exposure. You're right that the mainstream audience that the larger sites cater for probably wouldn't be interested in the story, but if they're not reporting the stories in the first place then they'll never become interested right?
 

SolidSnakex

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"Chris Chilling ‏@schillingc
@Davies_S_Neuro I'm not telling Rob to move on. And he left of his own volition. I'm not writing because I'm too close to those involved.
Not exactly the same situation, but it still proves his point

Recently, the Games Media Awards rolled around again, and games journos turned up to a thing to party with their friends in games PR. Games PR people and games journos voted for their favourite friends, and friends gave awards to friends, and everyone had a good night out. Eurogamer won an award. Kieron Gillen was named an industry legend (and if anyone is a legend in games writing, he is) but he deserves a better platform for recognition than those GMAs. The GMAs shouldn't exist. By rights, that room should be full of people who feel uncomfortable in each other's company. PR people should be looking at games journos and thinking, "That person makes my job very challenging." Why are they all best buddies? What the hell is going on?
People not being able to do their job because of friendships.
 
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