April 30th, 2006

GP Reader Shows Off Pixelante Shirt... and Devices

Today we bring you the Pixelante finery of GP reader Chris Shiherlis.

He's got no head, apparently, but, man, does he have gear. Chris, what is all that stuff?

By the way, we've sold 151 Pixelante shirts, thus surpassing our goal of 150. Thanks to all the GP readers who made this happen! All proceeds, of course, go directly to the Get-Well Gamers Foundation.

We still want to publish your picture in your Pixelante shirt, so send them in. We'll be taking the ad link for the shirts down at the end of the week, just before GP heads off to E3. But you can still buy a Pixelante shirt by clicking here, and that link will stay active indefinitely.

By the way, sometime after E3 we'll have GP shirts available for purchase. These won't be for charity, however. Proceeds will go toward keeping GP afloat. More info on that as it becomes available.

GP: You can discuss this story via the "comments" feature (click below), or in the new GamePolitics Forums...

Anniversay Day: Pat Boone Celebrates Parents Television Council

Aging singer Pat Boone, once known as "The kid in the white buck shoes" (GP kids you not) writes an op-ed in today's World Net Daily celebrating the Parents-Teachers Association (PTA) and the Parents Television Council (PTC).

Boone notes that 2006 is the 11th anniversary of the PTC. GP notes that the PTC, which encompasses video game activism within its scope, recently urged Oklahoma legislators to vote in favor of that state's video game legislation. The bill, HB3004, passed both houses unanimously and now appears on its way to Gov. Brad Henry for signature.

Of the PTC, Boone says: "This year marks the 11th anniversary of the Parents Television Council, the organization that has led the national effort to restore responsibility and common decency to the entertainment industry, particularly television. This valiant group of dedicated people has determined to help concerned parents and teachers accomplish their goal of nurturing fine, moral and honest kids."

"Now more than 1 million members strong, the PTC has gained worldwide recognition as America's largest and most influential watchdog organization. "Watchdog"? You flinch? Has that word become a pejorative? A negative? As if we don't need 'watching'? C'mon, get real.

GP: Now GP's not saying that Boone is two-faced, but we chuckle as we recall him singing Alice Cooper's "No More Mr. Nice Guy" on his sad, failed attempt to rock out with the 1997 album In a Metal Mood:

I got no friends 'cause they read the papers
They can't be seen with me
And I'm feelin' real shot down
And I'm gettin' mean

No more Mister Nice Guy
No more Mister Clean
No more Mister Nice Guy
They say he's sick, he's obscene...

GP: You can discuss this story via the "comments" feature (click below), or in the new GamePolitics Forums...

Anniversary Day: Walsh, NIMF Celebrate 10 Years of Media Activism

He may the one thing that the ESA, ESRB and Jack Thompson all agree on: they don't like him.

Despite that - or perhaps because of it - Dr. David Walsh, 60, president of the National Institute on Media and the Family (NIMF), is celebrating the organization's 10-year anniversary.

An Associated Press report terms Walsh "low-key" for a crusader. GP would tend to agree, and add that gamers may not often agree with Walsh, but he always treats them with respect.

"We're not, in any way, any kind of a censorship organization," Walsh told the AP. "We're not anti-media. We believe very strongly in the importance of the First Amendment."

"The real impact of media violence is, it starts to shape how it is that we treat one another - from 'have a nice day' to 'make my day,' Walsh quipped. "The 15-year-old brain is not the same as a 30-year-old brain, and so things are not going to affect it the same. And that's true of alcohol and it's also true of violent video games."

Walsh cites last summer's Hot Coffee scandal as NIMF's biggest moment, and it's true that Walsh's National Parental Alert moved Hot Coffee from a web-only story (broken by GamePolitics) to a mainstream sensation via his contacts with U.S. Senators Hillary Clinton (D-NY) and Joe Lieberman (D-CT).

"We were the nonprofit that exposed the fact that there was explicit pornography in the best-selling video game on the market. And the producer of that game denied for a month that it was there," recalled Walsh.

In demand as a speaker, Walsh made some 200 speeches last year. He also was a guest on a December GamePolitics podcast.

Things are certainly not in warm-and-fuzzy territory between Walsh and the video game industry just now. As reported on GamePolitics, NIMF's 2005 Annual Video Game Report Card was harshly critical of the industry, including awarding a failing grade to the ESRB. Walsh plans to call a national conference in September to address video game ratings.

The ESRB, in turn, was equally scathing in its reaction to the Video Game Report Card, saying, "NIMF's real agenda... is to destroy the commercial viability of games it deems objectionable. Unlike NIMF, ESRB's job is to be a neutral rater, not a censor... The ESRB rejects this year's MediaWise Report Card just as we did last year..."

To be honest, whatever one thinks of the NIMF-ESRB controversy, there were some other glaring problems with the 2005 report card, including its ridiculous assertion of a cannibalism trend in games and its disputed claim that the National PTA concurred with NIMF's findings.

Walsh also made big news when - in a story broken right here on GamePolitics - he publicly distanced himself and his organization from vitriolic anti-game activist Jack Thompson.

GP: You can discuss this story via the "comments" feature (click below), or in the new GamePolitics Forums...