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

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Ledsen

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I'm going to bed now.

If anyone wants to keep updating and posting this, feel free to do so!


Articles/videos
Wings over Sealand articles (second article has summary) 1 2
John Walker's (Rock Paper Shotgun) blog (start with Games Journalists, And The Perception Of Corruption)
TotalBiscuit
Jim Sterling
Penny-Arcade
Gamasutra
Forbes
Worthplaying
GiantBomb

Other links
Shawn Elliot - 1 (aegies is Arthur Gies of polygon.com) 2 3 4 5 on the psychology of PR etc
Jeff Green on the way it actually works
ShockingAlberto on his view as a former games writer
Jason Schreier (Kotaku) - 1 2
N'Gai Croal initial reaction on Twitter
Chris Schilling (freelance) likes both people involved and so doesn't want to write about it
Danny O'Dwyer (Gamespot UK) on why his site won't cover this (audience is not interested) - 1 2 3
Examples of various press kits
 

GillianSeed79

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It's fine if Ryan Davis says he isn't a journalist, but he should realize I sure as shit am going to listen to/read his review of ACIII with a bit of skepticism knowing that GB was sent at $2,000 flag. I'm not saying the guy is currupt. He wasn't exactly a fan of AC: Revelations and gave an honest impression of it. Then again he is the GB's AC guy. I really would like to know what they do with the flag. If they give it away that's cool. If he just says I don't care about any of this free shit, that's fine. They should at least do a full disclosure and say, hey, Ubisoft sent us this stupid $2,000 flag - just getting it out there - but this is what we think of ACIII.
The other thing is Klepeck is a journalist and they don't shy away from making him out to be the news guy for the site. So, while Ryan can say he is not a journalist, the mere impression of a conflict of interest involving any of the staff colors the whole site.
 

EternalGamer

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Patrick Klepek just put an article up on Giant Bomb that touches on this whole thing - http://www.giantbomb.com/news/worth-reading-102612/4426/
It's a good article and I like his response. I do wish that he had gotten more specific about how he feels regarding the issue of subtle PR influence like the type that is being discussed in this thread (PR kits, dinners, social relationships with PR, etc.).

He talks a lot about trust, but I guess what i really want is more transparency.
 

RedNumberFive

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Oct 6, 2006
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Patrick Klepek just put an article up on Giant Bomb that touches on this whole thing - http://www.giantbomb.com/news/worth-reading-102612/4426/
I like Patrick, and firmly believe he's one of the good guys, but I'd be curious to see CBS Interactive's ethics and COI policies.

I have found CBS Corporation's:

http://www.cbscorporation.com/_uploads/mce_files/2012BCS.pdf

But it's a bit vague on the expectations of their sub-branches. Regardless, I would think that a lot of GB's actions (and don't get me wrong, I love the guys) are in clear violation of the company standards.
 

Lancehead

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It's a good article and I like his response. I do wish that he had gotten more specific about how he feels regarding the issue of subtle PR influence like the type that is being discussed in this thread (PR kits, dinners, social relationships with PR, etc.).

He talks a lot about trust, but I guess what i really want is more transparency.
Transparency can go a long way towards trust.
 

Codeblue

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I'm on my phone - tried to read through everything. Apologies if I missed some of your points, but let me try to address a few:

- I try not to take twitter too seriously, and I have a tendency to joke about serious issues. (See: presidential debates.) That doesn't make them any less serious. Conflict of interest in this field is indeed a serious issue.

- I think today's Silicon Knights story (among many, many others) is good proof that Kotaku is not very concerned with how angry a story might make publishers.

- Again, I can't speak for all of Kotaku, but I can tell you that I wasn't actively thinking "oh shit shouldn't cover this!" I've been busy working on a few stories (like this one, which took me a ton of time: http://kotaku.com/5954973/as-fans-say-starcraft-is-dying-blizzard-plans-some-big-changes) among many other things. Believe it or not, I don't just sit around all day reading GAF. ;) I read John Walker's stuff yesterday, loved it, briefly thought about this story, and decided to work on other things instead.

- All that said, you folks bring up some good points. Maybe I should have covered this issue! I really don't know. I think the idea of press covering press is always nuanced, and I don't like the idea of telling other people how to do their jobs, nor do I like being "journalism ombudsman." My mentality in recent months has been to just do my job to the best of my ability, refuse to make compromises, and stay away from criticizing how other media do their jobs, for the most part. Is that the right mentality to take? Dunno. Is there really an easy answer there?

I'm also not sure it fits within our goals of spending most of our energy on stories that could appeal to broader audiences. Again, I really don't know. I think it's more nuanced than has been suggested here.

But I hate that some of you are boiling this down to "site doesn't cover this? They're part of the problem!" Not every site covers the same things, and not every site is necessarily interested in media issues like this one. You're all right that this is serious, problematic, and worth talking about. But there's no dogma that everyone in the gaming industry has to cover every single serious issue. Sometimes different publications just have different goals.
Cover what you want.

The reason your tweet was lame was because you were taking part in this weird circle jerk of people trying to make this issue a joke and sweep it under the rug. If you wanted to stay out of this you should have ignored N'Gai's deliberately dense and reductive thoughts.
 

Oersted

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Honestly, yeah gaming sites are pretty in bed with PR guys.. but I'm really not understanding how it effects the end game.. the games we play.
Not only sites, even printed magazines. Like I already pointed out, I know some who did this literally.
 

Fjordson

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It's a good article and I like his response. I do wish that he had gotten more specific about how he feels regarding the issue of subtle PR influence like the type that is being discussed in this thread (PR kits, dinners, social relationships with PR, etc.).

He talks a lot about trust, but I guess what i really want is more transparency.
Agreed on both counts.

I also wish we could get some feelings from the rest of the Giant Bomb crew. They're probably the only big dedicated gaming site that visit on a regular basis. Hopefully they talk about it on the next Bombcast.
 

Rapstah

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It's fine if Ryan Davis says he isn't a journalist, but he should realize I sure as shit am going to listen to/read his review of ACIII with a bit of skepticism knowing that GB was sent at $2,000 flag. I'm not saying the guy is currupt. He wasn't exactly a fan of AC: Revelations and gave an honest impression of it. Then again he is the GB's AC guy. I really would like to know what they do with the flag. If they give it away that's cool. If he just says I don't care about any of this free shit, that's fine. They should at least do a full disclosure and say, hey, Ubisoft sent us this stupid $2,000 flag - just getting it out there - but this is what we think of ACIII.
The other thing is Klepeck is a journalist and they don't shy away from making him out to be the news guy for the site. So, while Ryan can say he is not a journalist, the mere impression of a conflict of interest involving any of the staff colors the whole site.
I'm sure they'll all handle this by mentioning it shortly on the Bombcast, and I'm sure his opinion will basically be "I agree with Jeff". Jeff has already stated his opinion on the general subject of the PR/press relation in a premium video thing he did a month or so ago, if not in more places over the years. It might have all been framed in discussing how you should review games to audiences that know nothing about games, though, in connection to that Borderlands 2 / COD comparison article that was doing the rounds.
 
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I'm on my phone - tried to read through everything. Apologies if I missed some of your points, but let me try to address a few:

- I try not to take twitter too seriously, and I have a tendency to joke about serious issues. (See: presidential debates.) That doesn't make them any less serious. Conflict of interest in this field is indeed a serious issue.

- I think today's Silicon Knights story (among many, many others) is good proof that Kotaku is not very concerned with how angry a story might make publishers.

- Again, I can't speak for all of Kotaku, but I can tell you that I wasn't actively thinking "oh shit shouldn't cover this!" I've been busy working on a few stories (like this one, which took me a ton of time: http://kotaku.com/5954973/as-fans-say-starcraft-is-dying-blizzard-plans-some-big-changes) among many other things. Believe it or not, I don't just sit around all day reading GAF. ;) I read John Walker's stuff yesterday, loved it, briefly thought about this story, and decided to work on other things instead.

- All that said, you folks bring up some good points. Maybe I should have covered this issue! I really don't know. I think the idea of press covering press is always nuanced, and I don't like the idea of telling other people how to do their jobs, nor do I like being "journalism ombudsman." My mentality in recent months has been to just do my job to the best of my ability, refuse to make compromises, and stay away from criticizing how other media do their jobs, for the most part. Is that the right mentality to take? Dunno. Is there really an easy answer there?

I'm also not sure it fits within our goals of spending most of our energy on stories that could appeal to broader audiences. Again, I really don't know. I think it's more nuanced than has been suggested here.

But I hate that some of you are boiling this down to "site doesn't cover this? They're part of the problem!" Not every site covers the same things, and not every site is necessarily interested in media issues like this one. You're all right that this is serious, problematic, and worth talking about. But there's no dogma that everyone in the gaming industry has to cover every single serious issue. Sometimes different publications just have different goals.
I appreciate the posts and everything you have written has been great but at the very least since it is a hot topic at the moment it seems reasonable that it would be posted for discussion on Kotaku, especially considering the amount of fluff that gets posted at times. Wouldn't this be considered more important information for gamers than a Mario cake?
 

Dennis

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I appreciate the posts and everything you have written has been great but at the very least since it is a hot topic at the moment it seems reasonable that it would be posted for discussion on Kotaku, especially considering the amount of fluff that gets posted at times. Wouldn't this be considered more important information for gamers than a Mario cake?
You would think so wouldn't you.
 

NoirVisage

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Sep 12, 2011
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What I don't understand is how can you consider your site to be about gaming when you will gladly report about a guy killing his wife by kissing her or a chinese teacher that dresses up as a maid because her class got good grade but then won't report about a subject that can't be more about the gaming industry than that...
except this has nothing to do with the industry, its about a writer who went off the rails, named names made thinly veiled inferences and walked off the set while eurogamer, had to clean up his mess, and the gaming forums (not just Gaf mind you) full of non industry people trying to somehow turn this story about one journo calling out another journo, into a heroic stance against corruption. We deserve a better story than something tacked on to what should have been a humorous story about Geoff with a muffin head. blown way out of proportion and the masses are now wondering why their favorite gaming rag doesn't comment on it.. because its not news.
 

Branduil

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Excellent Eriador
What I don't understand is how can you consider your site to be about gaming when you will gladly report about a guy killing his wife by kissing her or a chinese teacher that dresses up as a maid because her class got good grade but then won't report about a subject that can't be more about the gaming industry than that...
Exactly. We're not talking about Reuters here, it's kotaku.com, LOL.

its about a writer who went off the rails
Wow, just wow.
 

FStop7

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Jan 8, 2009
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And, in my humble, customer/viewer opinion, going out to eat/socialize with PR people is NOT ok.
For what it's worth this is a problem that exists far beyond games and extends deep into the realm of "Things That Are Important." Such as: the White House Press Corps often takes flack for being far too chummy with whatever administration happens to be in power. Entire news networks (three guesses who) are known for their political allegiances to political parties they're supposed to be reporting. But instead they act as PR. They regurgitate press releases. And then there's the matter of serious journalistic outlets like 60 Minutes being forced by CBS corporate to tank stories because they angered the tobacco companies - of which one of the big tobacco CEOs happened to be the son of the owner of CBS at the time.

In the sports world one of the biggest topics right now is "How did Lance Armstrong get away with doping for all those years?" And if you've closely followed that saga you may be aware that the press has had a role in that through both passivity in failing to report on things that made sponsors like Nike, Trek, and Oakley frown in disapproval as well as actively spreading talking points designed to smear whistleblowers.

Not to derail the conversation, I just wanted to give a couple of real world examples of the same issues plaguing "real" journalism as well.
 

benny_a

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Apr 25, 2009
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Is anyone asking Geoff Keighley to write up a piece on this whole thing?
I haven't seen that specific request. People have asked to hear comments from him, though.
And my post was in reply to what comments were being made journalists and Ryan Davis from Giant Bomb was mentioned.

I just wanted to point out to those that defend him that he is comparable to Geoff Keighley.

Ryan sat next to a EA sponsored pizza in the Medal of Honor Quick Look.
Geoff sat next to Microsoft sponsored Doritos and Mountain Dew.

Ryan is the host of the Bombcast
Geoff is the host of GTTV

Ryan reviews more games than Geoff in a year. Superficially they are comparable types, hence my post.
You could draw an arbitrary line in the sand why something is wrong for one of them to do but no the other but I think this comparison should invite reflection.

Edit: Quick edit before I lose my head: I want to make it clear that I don't think either of those two people are shady.
That things can be misinterpreted or being read as to go beyond what I intended. That's an issue with attaching names to your examples.

Also: If a free 360 Slim is used at the MS conference to influence you, a $2000 flag should definitely sound alarm bells.
 

Zeliard

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Shawn Elliott on the self-deception behind self-interest:

No insult, no finger-pointing intended in the following.

Pharmaceutical company companies extensively research physicians' hobbies and personal interests, send attractive spokespeople to "inform" said physicians about their products over three-star michelin meals and golf games. Without exception, these physicians insist that they are immune to unethical influence.

Corporations like Coca Cola spend $10 billion a year or more on advertising campaigns with messages that college undergrads -- here I'm speaking from experience as a former instructor -- unfailingly insist they're uniquely insusceptible to.

Either these corporations are somehow recklessly burning revenue by the billions and somehow raking in unprecedented profit despite the sheer stupidity of their business practices or people are prone to maintain flattering though entirely unrealistic images of themselves. Unfortunately for us, replicated psychology experiments point to pervasive self-deception. Fortunately for us, while it's practically impossible for us to accurately monitor our own self-interest, we're marvelous at pointing it out in others. And this is the why the appearance of impropriety matters so much.

Tomes of research on the topic are out there and anyone remotely interested in cognition will encounter the experiments again and again. For those unfamiliar with it I recommend starting here: http://www.amazon.com/Honest-Truth-Dishonesty-Everyone---Especially-ebook/dp/B006IYFCIM/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1351217599&sr=1-1&keywords=The+Honest+Truth+About+Dishonesty:+How+We+Lie+to+Everyone---Especially+Ourselves
Jeff Green on the hard link between games writing and PR:

It's all about access. The magazines and sites want to cover the big games, the hyped games, because that's what brings in the readers/subscribers/viewers/hits/etc. The same goes for any part of the entertainment business, really. In order to GET this access, the press has to "play ball." Most game companies explicitly tell all their employees not to talk to the press under any circumstances. In many (most) cases, it's a fireable offense if they do. It's considered breaking an NDA, or violating confidentiality.

So, except for on rare occasions, when the rare enterprising reporter is able to contact the rare game company employee willing to speak (almost always off the record), the *only* way a press outlet is going to be able to get you those sweet, sweet Assassin's Creed screen shots is by dealing with the game companies' official spokespeople/representatives---i.e., by going through the PR departments. Piss off the PR departments, and say goodbye to your access. Believe me, I know. I had it happen to me multiple times at CGW. "Playing ball" can even include showing up at whatever stupid, contrived "media event" the PR department has organized as part of the marketing plan. Should a press outlet actually decide that, hey, they'd rather actually decide for themselves what's news, and maybe that event is some kind of horseshit thing they'd rather not attend, there can be repercussions for that too. Again, I had it happen to me personally. ("You don't want to attend? FINE! We'll give the next screens to your competitors!")

In short, if an outlet decides that part of their editorial mission is to provide you with the latest/greatest "sneak peeks", screens, "first looks", whateverthefuck, if they decide they'd rather you get it from THEM rather than their competition, then they better suck it up and play along. You wanna defy them? Good luck getting access. The game companies hold all the cards. (And again--this is no different from other entertainment fields--movies, music, TV, etc.)

Now, some companies are better, more open, less dickly than others. Some will let their designers speak a little more off the cuff (rather than following scripted bullet points). Some will provide a remarkable degree of candor, or a level of access normally not seen. But, for the most part, they have little incentive to do so. They've got the press by the proverbial short hairs.

But the press certainly has some choice, in some matters. You do NOT have to accept free shit. You do not have to tweet with the hashtags the companies tell you to. You do not have to take even one free drink or travel on their dime. You can play ball without compromising your own personal integrity. But you ALSO have to acknowledge that, to some extent, you ARE playing ball, and that it is not always going to look particularly noble or brave. That's why you have to try extra hard not to do dumb shit, not to LOOK like the shill you're desperately trying not to be. Because everyone else thinks you are. Including some of the companies you're covering. THEY see you as part of their marketing plan.

Others have said it better than I the last couple days, including Jim Sterling in his great piece. But this was just me helping to answer the "how it came to this" in the post quoted above.
N'Gai Croal in 140 characters or less:

N'Gai Croal said:
Wondering if publicists are actually as all-powerful as message board conspiracy theorists make them out to be. #GameJournalismEthics
N'Gai what are you doing? Take some cues from your fellow podcasters.
 

NihonTiger90

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It's a good article and I like his response. I do wish that he had gotten more specific about how he feels regarding the issue of subtle PR influence like the type that is being discussed in this thread (PR kits, dinners, social relationships with PR, etc.).

He talks a lot about trust, but I guess what i really want is more transparency.
They do go a bit hand-in-hand, don't they?

The other thing to remember is not every gaming company sends out the same press kits with every game to everyone, so it's hard to point a finger at who got what unless they tell us (again, back to transparency). I know from personal experience the "press kit" I got for my NCAA Football 11 review was 4 pages stapled together, lol. But again, at least translucency would be a big help.
 

Syriel

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Wait, did I miss something? Is this based on something specific?
When Activision wanted media to review one of its new iOS games a few years back it offered to send out/did send out a brand new iPod Touch to any media that would review the game.
 

NoirVisage

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Sep 12, 2011
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Exactly. We're not talking about Reuters here, it's kotaku.com, LOL.



Wow, just wow.
wow all you want, it would have been a better piece had he contacted the people he decided to call out as he did. "he's got blood on his hands but he's not a murderer"..seriously, i respect journos that are renegades, but out of everyone in this fiasco, i feel sorry for eurogamer..they were done dirty by who ever greenlit the original article and Mr. Florence who decided to walk (something i admittedly would do if my stuff was amended, but in this situation it definitely had to be)
 

NervousXtian

Thought Emoji Movie was good. Take that as you will.
Feb 7, 2010
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Ore-Gone.. not Ory-Gone.
Would it be cliché to tag quote here..?
Yes, because you wouldn't even be addressing what I wrote and basically just giving me a big "fuck off".. which isn't allowed on GAF last time I checked?

Why not discuss what I wrote? Other than the fact that actually further discussion instead of posting basically a "fuck off" to me.

I stand by what I wrote. I think the gaming press delivers mostly what most gamers actually want... and if you notice you basically have the same people over and over in this thread talking about how bad it is without discussing what is actually wrong with it.

You can give a few examples, but they really seem to be the exception than the rule... go to any large gaming site now and you see exactly what you'd expect.. let me break down IGN at this moment.. front page:

Silent Hill Revelations review (btw they ripped it), Borderlands Legends preview, Is Game Box Art Corny? (fluff piece like you see on GAF all the time), Assassins Creed III preview that goes over the prior games, Halo 4 webseries review, Harvest Moon 3DS story, Twisted Metal being available digital, TF2 story, Top 10 MW kills this week (lol), UC3 update, story on violent games (story on a German study)... there's more but you get the idea..

It's not all PR bought crap. Some of it maybe, but it's just general gaming news and stories.

Honestly, it's not that offensive. I guess according to some I should be, but I just can't get up in arms about it.

While I think there's a debate to be had there, that's a tangent to this discussion.
Not sure most of the people in this thread actually want to discuss things like that to be honest.. wish they would.. it'd be a far more entertaining and enlightening conversation than breaking down some guys tweets.

The games that sell dictate what games get made next.
..as they should. In the end games don't become million sellers by being terrible games. I don't see the charts really getting lit up by games that are universally panned.

I know many on GAF hate CoD with a passion and want nothing more than for it to fail.. but then again the millions who buy it and play it could really care less.

The movie business is no different.. big bloated mindless blockbusters can do gangbusters, not sure why thinking something like CoD which is the greatest equivalent to the summer blockbuster would be any different.

The public buys what it wants, what their friends tell them.. and yeah probably what the gaming press tells them.. but it's just one part of the equation. Yet scan the all-time list and pick out the universally praised games that are truly bad games... do the same for movies. Take out personal taste, and just judge it in context.

Ignore iPhone games.. that's one place where this discussion is actually fully true.
 

Gomu Gomu

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Jul 16, 2008
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Good write-up from GB. At least they addressed the news, and made their stance clear. See the thing GB does, that no other website does is that it's about the personalities. After some time following the site, you begin to understand how they think. I know I said they need to address this news one way or another, because it IS news and a big one. But in reality I knew that I personally didn't need it, because even though I live half way across the planet from them, I feel like I know them and I can trust them. Something I can't say about any other website, really. Especially not after them not talking about this news.
 

Htown

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Feb 19, 2008
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wow all you want, it would have been a better piece had he contacted the people he decided to call out as he did. "he's got blood on his hands but he's not a murderer"..seriously, i respect journos that are renegades, but out of everyone in this fiasco, i feel sorry for eurogamer..they were done dirty by who ever greenlit the original article and Mr. Florence who decided to walk (something i admittedly would do if my stuff was amended, but in this situation it definitely had to be)
So your take on this is basically "snitches get stitches?"
 

Izayoi

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Jul 25, 2010
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One of the most embarrassing parts about this entire debacle is that several of these so-called journalists have the balls to say that this whole thing is "no big deal." Really? And you want people to continue taking you seriously? The amount of immaturity in this industry has never been so glaring as it has in the past few days.
 

Branduil

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Sep 20, 2006
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Excellent Eriador
wow all you want, it would have been a better piece had he contacted the people he decided to call out as he did. "he's got blood on his hands but he's not a murderer"..seriously, i respect journos that are renegades, but out of everyone in this fiasco, i feel sorry for eurogamer..they were done dirty by who ever greenlit the original article and Mr. Florence who decided to walk (something i admittedly would do if my stuff was amended, but in this situation it definitely had to be)
Yeah he should have asked permission before saying something that would hurt their feelings :(

So your take on this is basically "snitches get stitches?"
Pretty much.
 

bernardobri

Steve, the dog with no powers that we let hang out with us all for some reason
Dec 5, 2008
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Wait, did I miss something? Is this based on something specific?
Here's the editorial by Tycho. In short, they didn't want to even look at the Nintendo DS believing it was a "gift" from the publisher to the reviewer, but the DS was signed by John fuckin' Carmack and was offered from the first moment to be auctionable in order to raise funds for Child's Play.
 

megalowho

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It's fine if Ryan Davis says he isn't a journalist, but he should realize I sure as shit am going to listen to/read his review of ACIII with a bit of skepticism knowing that GB was sent at $2,000 flag. I'm not saying the guy is currupt. He wasn't exactly a fan of AC: Revelations and gave an honest impression of it. Then again he is the GB's AC guy. I really would like to know what they do with the flag. If they give it away that's cool. If he just says I don't care about any of this free shit, that's fine. They should at least do a full disclosure and say, hey, Ubisoft sent us this stupid $2,000 flag - just getting it out there - but this is what we think of ACIII.
One thing they do is post videos of them opening a lot of that stuff up. I've never seen anything that made me raise an eye when GB deals with PR crap in those mailbox vids, it's pretty much indifference to mild annoyance all around. Those guys are as jaded as it gets at this point.

As mentioned, Jeff has given his thoughts a few times in some form or another about what happens to all that stuff as well as the bigger topic at hand, they'll probably touch on it again during the Bombcast. As for me, GAF and Giant Bomb are 90% of my gaming internet consumption precisely because a trust has been built up over time that I'm going to get honest opinions from established perspectives, whether I agree with them or not. That, and for entertainment purposes.
 

Gannd

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Apr 27, 2012
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except this has nothing to do with the industry, its about a writer who went off the rails, named names made thinly veiled inferences and walked off the set while eurogamer, had to clean up his mess, and the gaming forums (not just Gaf mind you) full of non industry people trying to somehow turn this story about one journo calling out another journo, into a heroic stance against corruption. We deserve a better story than something tacked on to what should have been a humorous story about Geoff with a muffin head. blown way out of proportion and the masses are now wondering why their favorite gaming rag doesn't comment on it.. because its not news.
Which publication do you work for? Because, wow, you really do not get it.

Firstly, you're not in the game industry. You're not. Anyone writing for the games press is not in the video game industry and that is part of the problem.
 

Corto

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Dec 5, 2008
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www.neogaf.com
except this has nothing to do with the industry, its about a writer who went off the rails, named names made thinly veiled inferences and walked off the set while eurogamer, had to clean up his mess, and the gaming forums (not just Gaf mind you) full of non industry people trying to somehow turn this story about one journo calling out another journo, into a heroic stance against corruption. We deserve a better story than something tacked on to what should have been a humorous story about Geoff with a muffin head. blown way out of proportion and the masses are now wondering why their favorite gaming rag doesn't comment on it.. because its not news.
It has everything to do with the industry. You can repeat your narrative time and time again but that won't change the fact that Robert Florence in his original article denounced the incestuous relationship between Games press and PR in UK. To an extent that some journalists or games writers or whatever you want to call them, don't even take notice of their behavior and the damage they're doing to their peers that abhor those practices. On the beginning of this whole mess I also posted that Robert shouldn't have named David Cook and Lauren Wainwright in his piece, I wouldn't, and if I was his editor (I'm not an editor or work in the industry) I would talk to him trying to show that that was a weakness of his article. But you have to agree that in no part of his article he says David or Lauren were corrupt, only that their behavior could be misunderstood as untrustful and that ultimately it would hurt them. The whole mess that originated from that is terrible, considering its consequences, but it's accessory to Robert initial article. There is an incestuous, promiscuous relationship between PR departments and video games press. If the games press wants to keep any shroud of credibility it better address this or sooner or latter.
 
May 20, 2007
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wow all you want, it would have been a better piece had he contacted the people he decided to call out as he did. "he's got blood on his hands but he's not a murderer"..seriously, i respect journos that are renegades, but out of everyone in this fiasco, i feel sorry for eurogamer..they were done dirty by who ever greenlit the original article and Mr. Florence who decided to walk (something i admittedly would do if my stuff was amended, but in this situation it definitely had to be)
Why would he have needed to contact the people he mentioned, he already had the relevant public quote(& bear in mind he named "journalists" who could easily have responded with an actual article rather than hiding behind a broken legal system).
 

Curufinwe

Member
May 20, 2009
31,241
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except this has nothing to do with the industry, its about a writer who went off the rails, named names made thinly veiled inferences and walked off the set while eurogamer, had to clean up his mess, and the gaming forums (not just Gaf mind you) full of non industry people trying to somehow turn this story about one journo calling out another journo, into a heroic stance against corruption. We deserve a better story than something tacked on to what should have been a humorous story about Geoff with a muffin head. blown way out of proportion and the masses are now wondering why their favorite gaming rag doesn't comment on it.. because its not news.
Clueless to the last.
 

NoirVisage

Banned
Sep 12, 2011
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It has everything to do with the industry. You can repeat your narrative time and time again but that won't change the fact that Robert Florence in his original article denounced the incestuous relationship between Games press and PR in UK. To an extent that some journalists or games writers or whatever you want to call them, don't even take notice of their behavior and the damage they're doing to their peers that abhor those practices. On the beginning of this whole mess I also posted that Robert shouldn't have named David Cook and Lauren Wainwright in his piece, I wouldn't, and if I was his editor (I'm not an editor or work in the industry) I would talk to him trying to show that that was a weakness of his article. But you have to agree that in no part of his article he says David or Lauren were corrupt, only that their behavior could be misunderstood as untrustful and that ultimately it would hurt them. The whole mess that originated from that is terrible, considering its consequences, but it's accessory to Robert initial article. There is an incestuous, promiscuous relationship between PR departments and video games press. If the games press wants to keep any shroud of credibility it better address this or sooner or latter.
if you don't understand how that bolded part kills any good points he may have had, and why the the other outlets could care less (especially since HE HIMSELF left eurogamer) you're not seeing things clearly at all.


It's pretty interesting how he keeps commenting on the writer of the article but not on the articles actual argument.
i can't because he poisoned his points, its also why no other outlet will touch this story.
 

Htown

STOP SHITTING ON MY MOTHER'S HEADSTONE
Feb 19, 2008
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no, my take on it is that he went about it in a very underhanded way and this fallout is needless drama.
So, again, in the case of the writer who had his article on journalistic appearance and ethics censored after it was posted vs the website that censored the article due to someone threatening legal action, you are sorry for the website and criticizing the writer. Because the writer was the underhanded one.
 
Nov 10, 2010
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It's fine if Ryan Davis says he isn't a journalist, but he should realize I sure as shit am going to listen to/read his review of ACIII with a bit of skepticism knowing that GB was sent at $2,000 flag. I'm not saying the guy is currupt. He wasn't exactly a fan of AC: Revelations and gave an honest impression of it. Then again he is the GB's AC guy. I really would like to know what they do with the flag. If they give it away that's cool. If he just says I don't care about any of this free shit, that's fine. They should at least do a full disclosure and say, hey, Ubisoft sent us this stupid $2,000 flag - just getting it out there - but this is what we think of ACIII.
The other thing is Klepeck is a journalist and they don't shy away from making him out to be the news guy for the site. So, while Ryan can say he is not a journalist, the mere impression of a conflict of interest involving any of the staff colors the whole site.
Can someone link me to this $2000 flag thing everyone is talking about?


It's a good article and I like his response. I do wish that he had gotten more specific about how he feels regarding the issue of subtle PR influence like the type that is being discussed in this thread (PR kits, dinners, social relationships with PR, etc.).

He talks a lot about trust, but I guess what i really want is more transparency.
Best thing about GB for me, is that I don't have to think about that stuff. Any PR wankery is usually discussed in the podcast (usually with complaints too!) or done in a mailbag video anyways. I really can't imagine how one can be more transparent then they already are without burning bridges.
 
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