The Alan Titchmarsh Show On Videogames

By Kieron Gillen on March 22nd, 2010 at 7:42 pm.

Sigh.

Because we really probably should post it even though no-one has the time to take it properly to task. I suspect we’d have said something similar to The Sixth Axis’ Open letter to ITV. You have to feel for C&VG’s Tim Ingham, who even by appearing on the show is pretty damn brave. Putting aside the research seemingly pulled from thin air, the latter-day attempt to link the Bulger killing to videogames is openly disgraceful. Watch and despair.

UPDATE: C&VG Uncover some interesting stuff about the vehemently anti-violent entertainment Julie Peasgood. She voice-acted in the old, terrible game Martian Gothic. The word you’re looking for is “Hypocrite”. It doesn’t mean that she’s particularly judgmental of large, African water-dwelling mammals.

As the Sixth Axis note, if you want to compose a polite complaint to ITV, here’s their contact details. I stress, polite.

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254 Comments »

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  1. DMcCool says:

    Its programs like this that make me have to grimace and look embarressed every time I explain my life-ambition to anyone from this country. I mean I’ve gotten good at my “media representaiton of games is awful” lines, but I look foward to the day I won’t have to repeat them to everyone I meet, y’know? Like I have to justify myself because I want to make games.

    Shame on you Alan. Get back in the garden.

  2. Daniel Rivas says:

    Well, hmm.

    There was me thinking this sort of attack on video games had gone out of style. The whole affair seems bizzarely retro.

    Ho hum.

    • Frankie The Patrician[PF] says:

      That’s exactly why I don’t want to watch it…cause I’m afraid my hippie haircut would return If I did…*shivers*

    • Veret says:

      I for one feel safer knowing that these brave folks are defending us from intelligent discourse.

      In all seriousness, though, what’s the problem? There are plenty of talking heads that can rabble-rouse, but it doesn’t look like they have the clout to effect any real political change; cooler heads will prevail. I hope.

  3. M says:

    Yeees. I watched this. As with most gaming-related things, it’s not awful, just stupid. The cinema analogy in the first few minutes is golden.

  4. MarkSide says:

    Gaaarrrrgke! : (

  5. Phoshi says:

    I love the way he avoids the existence of DVDs, and doesn’t think games have ratings.

    • TeeJay says:

      Well actually due to a legal screw-up the UK doesn’t currently have any legally enforceable ratings for video games.

      Also, although the government has said that the UK is switching from BBFC ratings (for some games) to compulsory PEGI ratings for almost all games, it hasn’t actually passed the relevant laws yet nor is it clear that he powers have been passed over from the BBFC to the VSC yet.

      In fact I have found it difficult to establish what the law is now and what it is going to be if the Digital Ecomony Bill is passed, in terms of the exact criteria used for different ratings, on what basis any game would ever be banned or refused classification, what games/downloads/mods/etc will be required to get PEGI certification or how they are going to regulate digital downloads, online games, mods and indies.

      I have started a thread about it hre if anyone can shed any light on it:

      “Censorship and control of videogames in the UK?”
      http://rockpapershotgun.com/rpsforum/topic.php?id=2177

    • TeeJay says:

      Sorry, make that “until 21 January 2010″ – they had to repeal and reinstated the Video Recordings Act 1984 to make it legally valid.

  6. Premium User Badge

    Lambchops says:

    Yeah, the Bulger reference was utterly ridiculous.Although if it hadn’t been for that point MacKenzie would have come off a bit more reasonable – at least he admitted he didn’t really know much about the subject and his concerns were understandable and you get the impression that talking to him reasonably for a while you might convince him that games wont lead to a slide into moral corruption.

    Peasgood on the other hand was an absolute joke, clearly unwilling to listen and spewing off crowd pleasing vitriol.

    Tim did his best, bless him, but it was clear much of the audience just didn’t want to listen.

    • Kieron Gillen says:

      To be generous, I hope MacKenzie was misremembering the whole Child’s Play part of the Bulger story – also disproved – and thinking the movie was a game.

      KG

    • Nick says:

      That woman is completely vile.

    • Jimbo says:

      Amen. He shoulda punched that white trash ho, right back into the kitchen where she belongs!

      (I thought he did pretty well)

    • Edgar the Peaceful says:

      Jimbo – I hope that was some heavy, heavy irony in a Chris Morris stylee.

    • Captain Bland says:

      @Edgar agreed. It would be disappointing if the anger this thing (rightly) provokes in gamers turned to misogyny. The lady was hardly alone in making offensive, uniformed statements about games. The entire thing was constructed by ITV to present the audience with what they wanted to hear: anti videogame anger. Tim Ingram is a hero for facing that.

    • Jimbo says:

      Of course, might as well joke about it. We are about 5 years and a billion pounds worth of tax revenue p.a. beyond ever needing to try and justify ourselves to these people. Those days are long gone.

    • Blackberries says:

      Yeah MacKenzie wasn’t too bad. He at least voiced his main fear as just that – a fear – rather than trying to say it would definitely become the case. And as you say, he came off as though he would be open to a reasonable argument to the contrary.

      That woman on the other hand was despicable (though I hope Jimbo is being ironic..!). Loudly asserted that games “were addictive” without any nuance or more importantly evidence, and pretty much just tapped into the crowd’s tabloid-and-shows-like-this-generated preconceptions. To which there’s a certain bizarre and depressingly ironic circularity.

      Tim did admirably, and I hope there were at least some viewers who would have listened to what he said. Nobody successfully disputed any of the points he was making, particularly the main one: children should not be playing adult rated video games, and shops comply with the laws in place which ensure this is the case. It renders pretty much moot the talk about the effect on children.

      I would have liked him to have pushed harder against the idea that (if this is indeed what any of them were saying? They may have been only referring to children) adults and indeed people in general somehow can’t separate fantasy from reality. True, games are interactive (thus engaging), but this interaction still only amounts to twiddling your thumbs, and this still doesn’t mean people will unthinkingly start mimicking them, zombie-like.

      Final point: anyone else find it interesting that while Time addressed Alan and the other panelists when he was speaking, the other two, especially the woman, spoke to the audience. She was basically raising her arm to them. See my previous point about tapping into their preconceptions.

    • somnolentsurfer says:

      A bit more reasonable apart from the bit where he made the absurd request for proof that society wouldn’t go to pot in twenty years.

    • FunkyBadger says:

      @KG:

      MacKenzie hasn’t got a great record when it comes to misrepresenting horror for his own personal ends, mind.

    • battles_atlas says:

      Yeah before we all start making bedfellows with MacKenzie, this is the guy that came up with the story of Liverpool fans pissing on and robbing dead fellow fans at Hillsborough. Then he apologised and retracted the claim, then he unapologised and restated it. An absolute heinous cunt. I’ve no idea why he’s allowed on tv – I’d like to see someone express similar views about the 7/7 or 9/11 victims and still have any career.

      In regard to the actual show, this entire discussion is entirely pointless. Games are big business now, thus even the Daily Mail and its video arm The Alan Titchmarsh Show can’t touch them. Politicians get plenty of opportunity for knee jerk responses to games whenever a young person does something unfortunate and the Mail wheels out the virtual straw man to project blame on. Unlike in most other cases however, politicians have done very little, because games are a huge industry now. They’ll happily legislate against any adult that happens to have contact with a child, because no CEO will have a problem with it. Games though are untouchable.

  7. Alexander Norris says:

    I was linked to this by some of the RPS chatroom crew and only got halfway through before wisely deciding I would stop.

    I’d just replaced my keyboard, y’see.

    • Unaco says:

      I didn’t even get that far in. About 10 seconds and then I just knew it would annoy me.

    • Mario Figueiredo says:

      Yes, I couldn’t see it in its entirety myself either, when it was linked on the Observer (or Sunday Papers, can’t remember) comments here on RPS. That women was making me go red eyed.

      Don’t see the point of putting up a complaint. It will only aggravate the thing, giving this seems like those typical morning/afternoon shows for lonely house wives and the elderly.

    • Jockie says:

      Got as far as the vile woman making an ignorant point and receiving applause for her effort, before shaking my head in disdain and turning off.

    • Zerai says:

      I suppose there are benefits to not being a native english speaker, and going directly for the soundbite at 6:16

  8. Premium User Badge

    Ging says:

    I was sort of waiting for the audience to rise up as an angry mob with pitchforks and flaming torches whenever Tim was speaking.

    • Blackberries says:

      I was cringing, constantly worried they would begin to jeer him like they cheered the others. That would have been disgusting.

  9. Mman says:

    Funny this came up; I had the show on and changed the channel quick when the mention of upcoming stuff said about a games discussion, as experience (along with the use of charged words like “corrupting” in the preview) gave me a big hunch it would be some crap like this and I see I was right.

    Oh well, just another show to add to the “don’t even have it on as background noise” list; like I did with Richard and Judy when they had an equally disgustingly biased lynching.

  10. cliffski says:

    Wot I sent :D
    ==
    I have just seen a clip of ‘the alan titchmarsh show’ where the topic of videogame violence was discussed. It is telling that the only coverage mainstream media will give to the videogame baftas is to decry all gamers as violent kids with low self esteem and suffering from depression. This is truly tragic.
    It seemed that the discussion was carried out more as a lynching of the industry and an attempt to whip up the audience into an anti-games rant than any serious attempt to actually cover the topic.
    I run a UK video games company. I contribute to UK taxes, I do not make violent video games. My games have been used to teach the values of maintaining relationships to autistic children, and to teach politics at school and college level. The only comment that I can applaud on the show was the admission that the average video gamer is in their thirties, something which flew straight over the head of your presenter who seemed to think all games are played just by children, and that you ‘watch’ rather than play them.
    Alan titchmarsh has never been Jon Snow or Jeremy paxman, but his wafer thin grasp of the issue he was discussing just shows him to be more in the intellectual league of the Jeremy Kyle show. Please do not insult the intelligence of your ever-dwindling audience (many of which will be playing games rather than passively absorbing this entertainment any more) by getting alan to reach above his level. He failed.
    ==
    Don’t worry people, in ten years time only idiots will still be watching TV. The rest of us will be playing games :D

    • Edgar the Peaceful says:

      Fantastic. nicely put.

    • othelios says:

      I don’t often login to comment, but after reading that you’d made a game for autistic children (Kudos 2, I presume?) I just had to reply and commend you for doing so. My sister is autistic, and the only game she plays is The Sims. I’ll be sending her the link to your site, Kudos 2 in particular, and see what she thinks of it.

      Thanks

    • H says:

      Cliff, do you think there’d be any problem with submitting (an edited) copy of your comments to ITV at all? I’m rubbish at writing letters and I think a standard copy and paste jobby would be ideal. (I’d naturally leave out references to running a games company, fr’instance!)

      H

    • Nickiepoo says:

      Between this and GSB I quite like you.

  11. jsutcliffe says:

    Facetiously, I don’t think I’d trust Titchmarsh in any discussion of games unless Viva Pinata is involved.

  12. TooNu says:

    Hello.
    That programe really was the wrong place for a debate such as that. Tim being the only one with any knowledge on the subject on a programe with 3 old people who clearly have no idea baring the “bait” lines they hear on radio, see on TV or right-wing newspaper.

    Though I don’t think Tim said anything wrong and in 10 years time his view will be vindicated. Parental control and a good moral code ftw, non-interest in your childrens activities ftl.

  13. PureKamikaze says:

    I stopped watching after the chick started talking. Her first sentence just made my stomach turn.

  14. Tom O'Bedlam says:

    Damn those wargame videos. I got about halfway through before I had to turn it off or I’d throw my laptop across the room. Lot of respect for Tim Ingham for standing his ground though.

  15. Emma Vieceli says:

    Gosh, I’m SO glad that was a nice, balanced debate. Well done to Tim – he was a trooper. I could not have held my cool for that long…and I’m not even speaking as a war gamer myself. That clip just made me SO angry.

    “I’m categorically against violence as entertainment” <—oh, yeah? Well, we'd better burn most of the literary canon and throw the bible in while we're at it.
    *sigh*
    frustration.

    • Rited says:

      Don’t get angry Emma – these people are just another dying breed, a relic of a different generation when games were a strange and geeky fringe hobby to be feared and misunderstood.

      Now it’s an industry of billions of dollars a year with people of all ages and from all walks of life playing games regularly, on everything from their Sky boxes to Facebook, their iPhones, handhelds, consoles and PCs…

      Quite simply, times have changed. This bunch of fear mongering biased idiots just haven’t adapted to it, and are trying to get a rise from ITV’s 6 remaining viewers to vindicate their own outdated and ill-informed perspectives.

      Their loss, our indifference. :)

    • Emma Vieceli says:

      SO true ^_^

  16. IdleHands says:

    Bravo to Six Axis for articulating gamers feelings without turning into a raging imbecile (which is pretty much what happened to me when I watched this). Of course Tim Ingham should now get a medal for not just walking out of the studio, and also he has balls of steel for not fleeing when the audience became a more menacing mob.

    I gotta say one thing I notice about ‘gaming’ sections on TV shows is how the presenter reads out game titles. Seriously listen to Titchmarsh as he reads the titles, I know he may be trying to emphasise the violent names but it comes off like he’s reading a completely foreign language. After that you can tell how this segment is going to play out.

    • Clovis says:

      The way he read “Left for Dead 2″ made it sound like a game about beating people up and leaving them to die in the streets.

      Which is mostly true, really.

    • Gorgeras says:

      Yes except backwards. People die in the streets, then you beat them up or shoot them.

    • Heliocentric says:

      Zombies are people too.

    • Tei says:

      Heliocentric:
      Zombies are people too.

      And so.. the meme has run full circle and is appropriate again.

    • Blackberries says:

      Also: “Call of Duty 2: Modern Warfare”. Though even one of the people reading out the awards at the BAFTAs made the same error.

      Speaking of which, did you also like the eyebrow-raised, mocking tone with which he announced the existence of a BAFTA awards for – gasp – video games?

  17. Alex Bakke says:

    I’m saddened to say that I expected exactly that. That woman is stupid. Tim Ingham is lovely. MacKenzie looks like a nice chap, I agree about the Bulger mistake.

  18. mister k says:

    The audience there makes me shudder. I guess for morons like these to exist there must be an audience, but I suppose I had forgotten quite how insular gaming can be. Booing someone for quoting a survey is quite impressively moronic though.

    • cliffski says:

      the audience is people free during the daytime and with no desire to do anything more fulfilling than watch alan tichmarsh talking.
      They are not the cultural or intellectual elite :D

    • Feste says:

      Another example of the wonders of the mid-afternoon audience is Jeremy Vines’s show on Radio 2. What was the phrase? “You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy.” Yep, that’s pretty accurate.

  19. SomeGuy says:

    What about things like Macharium, Osmos, everything that popcap make.!!11!!!!1

  20. airtekh says:

    I’m so angry that my hands are shaking as I type this.

    I feel so sorry for Tim Ingham; it’s like you can feel the hatred of everyone in the room turn towards him when he opens his mouth.

  21. JamesOf83 says:

    Poor Tim. Spoke with logic and reason, fairly and politely. All upon deaf ears. Alan’s fluffing of the fact that DVDs are just as easy for people to watch at home as games are to play is astounding.

    The entire video made me want to scream. Not that it matters, as the target audience of that show are not a generation of gamers. All it will take is time really. By the time I have grandkids, everyone in power will have been raised in a time where games are commonplace.

    • Colthor says:

      @JamesOf83:

      Yeah, progress is old people dying. Complain if it makes you feel better, but it won’t change anybody’s mind.

  22. Grezza says:

    Kelvin McKenzie, the man who accused Liverpool fans of Pick Pocketing dead Hilborough victims, claimed that Liverpool fans urinated on the police on the pitch and beat up a police man trying to revive a fan, trying to take the moral high ground about video games?
    Give me a break.

  23. mandrill says:

    I got to the bit where the blonde bint started spouting and had to stop watching. This is a blatant attack on games, gaming and gamers, by the telvision industry. Who (rightly) feel that they are losing viewers to gaming and can see no other way to compete.

    Sad. Very sad.

    • mandrill says:

      That being said, I wouldn’t blame Alan Tichmarsh for this. He’s just a bloody gardener and not even a journalist. There was an editorial agenda behind this and I’m willing to be t it cam from the very top.

  24. Seras says:

    Excellent effort by Tim

    • kromagg says:

      If there’s anything I took out of this, it’s that Tim Ingham fucking rocks.

  25. Joseppe says:

    Why bother to complain? They know their audience, clearly (they’ve packed a studio full of folks who applause on cue), and it’s not us. I’m not saying that you should never complain, but this is like asking FOXNews (sorry, US here) to provide more balanced discussion on the healthcare debate.

    • Blackberries says:

      Fun fact: NewsCorp are a big (the biggest? Can’t find out for certain) stakeholder in ITV, the broadcaster of this programme.

    • Bobsy says:

      As I understand it (though I may be wrong) Newscorp are the largest stakeholder, but not a majority stakeholder.

      Although I may be thinking of ITN.

  26. PaulMode7 says:

    People are always scared of any powerful social and artistic forces which arise in a culture.

    The process is this: “Here is something new and powerful ==> I feel scared ==> This must be VERY wrong, because I feel scared ==> The people I care about might be hurt by this very wrong thing ==> I care most about my children”

    Great little article illustrating the point with loads of examples: http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/14.04/war.html

    This happened with pinball as well: I’ve always been amused by that! The New York Mayor, Fiorello La Guardia, who enacted a pinball ban in the 1940’s wrote that the machines robbed the “pockets of school children in the form of nickels and dimes given them as lunch money”.

    In general, this is such a known phenomenon that I’m fairly happy to just ignore it. Expecting sane debate from Alan Titchmarsh is like expecting astute critical commentary from Loose Women. The audience doesn’t WANT that: listen to them applaud when that ludicrous woman starts up her drivel. They want to have their preconceptions reaffirmed, because old people don’t have the mental energy to change their opinions easily.

    The prevailing wind *is* changing for games, though. A few years ago, I would tell people that I was in a small company which made games, and they would say, “Oh, so you’re the ones corrupting our children then? Ho ho.” Now they’re much more likely to tell me about some iPhone game they like, or tell me that they play Wii games with their kids, or that they remember playing such-and-such a game when they were young.

  27. Wallace says:

    This made me sad, but then I saw this: http://botherer.org/2010/03/21/the-merton-phenomenon/
    and suddenly everything seemed alright again.

    • Premium User Badge

      Lambchops says:

      I love the Ben Folds Merton tribute. It really is a thing of wonder.

  28. kulak says:

    I’m NOT saying Alan Titchmarsh should be dragged out of his house at 2 in the morning and flogged with car aerials till pulpy.

    but i will say it would make better television than the torrent of shit i just glimpsed.

  29. PaulMode7 says:

    Having said all that, I am now going to send a complaint, because we should at least TRY to refute this kind of stuff.

  30. Ace says:

    I cannot wait for the currently older generations to die and get the fuck out of the way.

    • Paul B says:

      I think you’d think differently if you were one of the older generation. And I’m sure not all of the older generation share the views expressed in the video. Although, on the other hand, maybe a Logan’s Run type society where you were offed once you reached thirty, wouldn’t be all bad? ;)

    • Blackberries says:

      Oh they’re not all bad. One of my favourite games-related anecdotes is some years ago from when I was playing Timesplitters 2 with my grandfather in the room. I was trying to get a bonus objective for draining all the whiskey barrels in the Chicago level, but was flummoxed when I shot one and the game didn’t acknowledge it.

      My grandfather, silent until then, pointed out that I hadn’t shot it at the bottom, so it couldn’t have fully drained. That worked.

  31. Mac says:

    We should ban Rock n Roll while we are at it …. oh …

  32. Premium User Badge

    sonofsanta says:

    Tim’s a bit of a hero for being brave enough to put himself up against that level of short-sighted head-in-the-sand level of debate. He must have known what he was walking into.

  33. noom says:

    I want to shoot that woman in the face. With everything that videogames have tought me in the past 20 odd years, I of course feel this to be a socially acceptable method for conveying my opinions.

    It may indeed be the only way I know how.

  34. HexagonalBolts says:

    *explodes*

  35. Po0py says:

    Unlike those old farts, our generation have grown up playing video games. We are now at the age that a lot of us are becoming parents. The old farts will disappear into old peoples homes where such horror’s as Wii-More wielding children are kept far away. New parents will sit with their children and play Mario and when said children express a desire to kill their online chums through the medium of first person shooter games we will tell the children what our old farty parents told us when we expressed a desire to watch horror films late at night. “Wait till your older, youngling.” And thus, the problem will sort itself out.

  36. robrob says:

    Sith Axis would be an awesome name for a band.

  37. Premium User Badge

    Vandelay says:

    Saw this when a commenter posted it in The Sunday Papers comments section. I really can’t bring myself to watch again.

    Have to admit, I missed the Bulger slip up (probably because it would have been before my time/when I was very young and I didn’t know the details – although, someone mentioning connections to Child’s Play does jog a memory,) but I did think Mckenzie was at least willing to have some form of debate, rather than
    Peasgood’s obvious decision to go on the programme and stick to the opinion she already held on something she knew nothing about. When she started quoting random studies that supposedly showed links between violence in children and games I was getting pissed off, but when the audience openly booed Tim for mentioning a report that was very well documented and conducted by someone well respected I was really fuming.

    Titchmarsh’s completely bizarre comment that it was much harder to control what kids played in the home than what they went to see in the cinema was just laughably baffling – as was him completely ignoring the existence of DVDs, which would have refuted the point even if it had of made any sense in the first place.

    In fact, I don’t think this being broadcast was as bad as people make out. We should be writing to congratulate ITV for showing the public this footage. Who in their right mind would side with the closed-minded people here, who had done zero research and made completely ludicrous statements? Who could walk away from seeing that video and not be on the side of the polite, well articulated gaming expert, instead of the baying mob and the woman who shouted completely opinionated comments?

    Tim took a bullet for us here and showed everyone what those that speak out against gaming are really like.

    • Gav says:

      “Who in their right mind would side with the closed-minded people here,”

      The people that read the Daily Mail and Daily Express and that is a lot of imbeciles. Hate brings more people together than love and kindness ever has. Probably something to do with the embrace of Schadenfreude as an acceptable religious philosophy.

    • Premium User Badge

      James G says:

      @Vandelay @Gav

      Brooker seems appropriate here.

      Wait, Brooker seems appropriate everywhere.

    • Premium User Badge

      Vandelay says:

      @Gav
      I was actually being a bit facetious. Of course there are people that would believe the crap being spouted by Peasgood, but hopefully the numbers are outweighed by those that can see how ridiculous they all looked when they started up the lynching crew.

  38. Clovis says:

    Old dude: “I am not a wargamer … I rejected it quite early in life.”

    Wha?

    Also, I’m not familiar with racism being a major problem in video games. Where did Blondie get that from?

    Violent, depressed people liking video games (shocker!) and video games causing violence and depression are not the same thing. Tim should have made that point before mentioning the other study which actually looked at causation.

  39. Premium User Badge

    Jerricho says:

    That really is absolutely appauling programming. Fair play to Tim for keeping calm while sitting on the drumhead.
    While I might initially agree with Kieron that benefit of some manner of doubt might be given to Kelvin on the subject of the Bulger murder, it is indefenceable that it was not immediately corrected.
    Julie Peacegood quoting that awful American study which showed NO causal links at all is shocking and … kudos again to Tim for not breaking into open laughter, the jeering from the audience when he mentions the Byron study is just… sorry, are we actually watching a pantomime?

    Titchmarsh’s assumption that no-one keeps movies in any format in the home is just embarrassing.

  40. Shadrach says:

    Aaah yes. This is one of the reasons I stopped watching TV a long time ago. Thanks for reminding me ;)

  41. mere_immortal says:

    Problem with shows like this is that the audience have already made up their mind as to their stance on the issue being discussed.

    Tim puts over absolutely valid points and argues them well, yet is arguing against what is basically an avatar of the audience on stage spouting baseless claims and her own opinions.

  42. westyfield says:

    I want to give Tim Ingham a hug, he sure needs one after that.

  43. Gpig says:

    It appears VH1 is using a slightly different format for Remember the 90’s.

  44. jti says:

    Why is it always like that? The most idiotic people get to voice their stupid preconceptions to the world… It’s the same in Finland too concerning the gaming. Alan should’ve stayed with his gardens. I liked him doing his gardens talk. I should’ve known he’d participate this sort of thing too.

    Well, as we all know, Elvis worshipped Satan and gaming is full of violence that explains ALL the problems you’ve got there. NOT.

    I’m so angry I could eat my sofa.

  45. Frankie The Patrician[PF] says:

    I’d prefer not to watch it…maybe later. Did they actually pulled some CONCLUSIVE social psychology study up their arses or did they just connect various inconclusive studies and urban myths while ignoring the studies saying otherwise? And why do I feel like I’m asking a rhetorical question? :)))
    And I must say, KG, I really loved your article about violence in PCG around the year 2000…best opening paragraph in an article about violence in games ever and all.. And splendid pictures too.
    Well, back to the analysis of Mrs. Dalloway…off I go

    • Kieron Gillen says:

      Frankie: My mind’s lost that completely. What was my rough take?

      KG

    • Frankie The Patrician[PF] says:

      The opening was about two friends. They were both healthy boys and all…but then one of them started playing videogames (ATARI, my rough guess?). As the time carried on, they got separated and one of them started using drugs, getting into brawls and some other criminal activities, p’haps. And then we learn the one playing videogames was you. A marvelous climax. And psychological, too.
      -F

  46. Feste says:

    Just sent an email of complaint to ITV, we’ll see what I get back. Regarding the selling of media to minors, Bill Harris has a very interesting post here: http://dubiousquality.blogspot.com/2009/12/ftc.html. In short, in the US less mature-rated games are sold to minors than 18-rated videos, 20% of test shoppers as opposed to 54%.

    Where are the talk show segments decrying the violent and sexualised films such as Twilight?

  47. Matty says:

    Given that this nonsense went out on The Alan Titchmarsh Show and not Newsnight does it really matter?

    • cliffski says:

      politicians pander to the tchtmash crowd, not the newsnight crowd.

    • Garg says:

      @Matty: Past game coverage on Newsnight Review is often largely disparaging. They’re both a symptom of the well entrenched prejudice that’s existed for ages, and shows no real sign of disappearing any time soon. Basically we need to wait for the old to die off, and just hold the fort until then.

    • Nick says:

      Ever see Paxman discussing the original GTA with one of the DMA guys? (I think it was one of them anyway..).

    • Edgar the Peaceful says:

      @Garg. But the intellectual press, in part, are starting to engage with gaming as a ‘legitimate’ art. See Lanchester’s article in The London Review of Books:

      http://www.lrb.co.uk/v31/n01/john-lanchester/is-it-art

    • Adam Whitehead says:

      Yeah, Paxman’s interview with the designers of GTA back in the day was pretty horrendous.

      (going by memory)

      Paxman: “Wait, are you telling me that adults actually play these games?”
      DMA Guy: (genuinely bewildered) “Well, games are very expensive and there’s an 18 sticker on the front, so yeah, they do.”

      Not Newsnight’s finest hour.

  48. Inigo says:

    Julie Peasgood . . . Harroway (voice)

    How about that.

  49. Roadrunnerr says:

    Am I the only one who sees the resemblence between him an Nick Griffin?

  50. Ubernutz says:

    As a viewing experience, this is harrowing. I am harrowed. Poor Tim deserves a hug and a hot mug of cocoa. With marshmallows.