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Question Of The Week Asks: Is Lowenstein Right?

Question Of The Week Asks: Is Lowenstein Right?

February 15, 2007 | By Staff

February 15, 2007 | By Staff
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The "Question Of The Week" feature, a specific industry-related question to be answered by professional game developers reading this site, is asking whether Doug Lowenstein's incendiary comments about the game biz at D.I.C.E. were on target.

Specifically, in his final speech as President of trade body the Entertainment Software Association, Lowenstein suggested that developers who make controversial game content often refuse to stand behind their games in public:

"The publishers and developers who make controversial content and then cut and run when it comes time to defending their creative decisions... Nothing annoys me more. If you want the right to make what you want, if you want to push the envelope, I'm out there defending your right to do it. But, dammit, get out there and support the creative decisions you make."

He also directly criticized game professionals in the room for not joining the ESA-organized Video Game Voters Network, commenting: "No one has bothered to take the time to do that, and it makes me sick. What is the problem? You can not expect this industry to grow and prosper if you're not willing to take the time and effort to help it."

Lowenstein concluded: "No matter how good we are, and we're good, we can't win the war without an army. And you're the army. And most of the people in this room who have the most at stake are too lazy to join this army... Don't let others fight the fight for you, because in the end we won't have enough soldiers to succeed."

Thus, the question, which can be answered at the official Question Of The Week page until February 21st, is:

"Is Doug Lowenstein fair in his farewell speech comments that game professionals are failing to stand up for their freedom? If he is, what should we each be doing to ensure that censorship is not an issue in the game industry?"

As with the previous questions, the best responses will be compiled into an article to be published on the site, and users can either respond publically, with their name and company specifically cited, or anonymize their answers if they wish.


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