Thursday, 28 May 2009

Free Speech? Or not?

So, an update on the whole Rapelay mess. Apparently, after being hassled about it by Westerners for a bit, the Japanese sexgames industry is feeling a bit sheepish about all their violent rape games and is instituting a voluntary member-policy discouraging them. (So it's not a law. It's just red faces.)

EDIT: Apparently there was an incorrect news story somewhere and this hasn't actually happened.

EDIT AGAIN: Okay, now it has.

I don't know what to think. I'm capable of telling the difference between fantasy and reality, I know that most people who play these creepy things would not hurt a real person, and I'm not generally pro-censorship. On the other hand, if the industry is pressured to make more games about consensual relationships instead, I can't help but feel that's kinda a good thing...

Of course, the creepiest stuff is probably that made by doujin circles, who the anti-Rapelay movement has never heard of, and who won't be affected by a policy in an industry they're not officially part of.


סיגי said...

You gotta be kiddin me.
This is such a sanctimonious, hypocritycal,mouth gagging morall coersion.

How is it ok (or any different than)running through the streets and blow heads of passerbies (Postal or GTA)? While this game might not be a very pleasant sight to some people (perhaps even me), you cant start making discrimanation between the expressions that you like and those that you don't, because one day you might end up on the minority side while the majority shutting you up (or down).

This exactly what was 20 years ago with music and 50 years ago with comics and before that with books...

Rapelay games are for those who want them, and when you (not you personally) start to forcefully pressure the creators of this product from making those games, you are certainly hurting them and those who wants it.
Remember next time it might be you!

Even smut deserves protection.

Whiner said...

If it were an actual *law* my opinion would be more firm. I don't like censorship laws.

But voluntary restrictions are not quite the same thing. They can have a chilling effect. They can change the financial viability of a subject. They *encourage* you to do something else because it's easier. But they don't actually stop you.

So I'm saying, a change in the landscape that encourages a bit more consensual sex out of the ero-market is not a bad thing in my eye. :)

סיגי said...

An "encouragement" indeed, like when Tony Soprano making "suggestions".

First of all, an update is in order.
It seems like the goverment is there after all.

Secondly, while I am very much enjoying the free market and I'm a supporter of a vendors right to choose the enviorment he works in - Why can't a man choose the people he will work with? What about a KKK member who hates those damn Niggers and Jews? Why is he forced by the govement to not make discriminations when he is hiring someone to help him out?
Quite frankly these two situations seems very similar to me.
The brute 'free market' ideology, which you apply here, can be very cold.

I have to admit, its a little difficult to formulate it all to concrete ideas, but my instincts just cry out.

Another Issue is ESOC's purpose and position.
Isn't ESOC's purpose is to *Rate* games?
Why is all the sudden they decide which game they don't want to rate?
And it's position is of a monopoly (another thing which the goverment battles). Imagine what if a major corporation with no competition, which provides you a vital service without which you won't be able to live (or just live in a modern society), singles you out and denies you of service? Sure, you could start your own banking buisness (if we are talking about a bank) or create your own internet (if we are talking about a communication provider) or electricity and etc... no one stops you from doing anything, but most likely is that you will die. BTW, according to what I know, USA have a strong consumery mindset and lots of competition between buisnesses, there are many countries in which the situation is radically different and such a scenario is even more frightening. I heard you guys can even change your electricity provider.

I can understand if perhaps the ESOC decide on a new rating system, and maybe even give this game a category of its own, but anything else (especially refusal of service to any company that produces such games even on an unrelated issue) is simply wrong and should be out of their jurisdiction.

And finally - look, I guess that the thing that got me going and started my resentment campaign, was your gloating. The fact that you were happy that you managed to squash by force a certain idea (as opposed to if the idea would have fizzled itself by lack of demand).
Personally, I don't really like this game either (although mostly maybe I simply don't care), but I do hate Neo-Nazis, and if a Neo-Nazi game would have been refused for reviewal by the ESRB, I would have been just as outraged (which incidently I was when the city tried to shut down that Nazi parade, a few years ago).

Of course, you have the full right to gloat as much as you want to, however it doesn't mean it is very dignified.

P.S I'm not familiar with the American law. Does it allow a business to discriminate to whom it gives service based on the religious or any other ideological characteristics?

Whiner said...

Wait... huh? Where the heck do you get 'gloating' out of me reporting something happening? *I* did not have anything to do with it! *I* did not squash anything. I first heard about this happening ON A HENTAI FORUM! I don't even live in the USA. Did you get sent a link to this blog by mistake or something?

All I'm doing is reporting on what's happening, and adding my personal commentary that I don't like censorship and don't like the fact that there are so many creepy rape games either. This is a gaming blog, so if a game gets banned for any reason and I hear about it, I'm likely to talk about it.

You're lucky you're attempting to argue with someone who's actually on your side, because otherwise your hyperinflated comparisons would be quite likely to piss off whoever you were talking to. A group of shops deciding to only stock free-range eggs because the fuss over animal welfare has currently made caged eggs unappealing to the market doesn't even vaguely compare to race hatred, and by stating that it looks the same to you, you make yourself look dumb and discredit your case.

Market pressure already affects games in all sorts of ways. You've heard about the story of 'Six Days in Fallujah', I hope?

סיגי said...

First of all I must apologise.
English is not my native language (as you must have noticed from my dreadful grammatical mistakes), and thus perhaps my choise of words was a little exaggerated and out of order.
I guess that "gloating" was a little too harsh. What I meant was to adress the fact that you saw such an occurrence as a positive thing and maybe even happy because of that. Can you offer me a more appropriate sentence/word for this situation?
Also, I did not mean to acuse *YOU* personally or any of your henchmen (LOL), by saying "you" I meant the "hypothetical you", the you who hypothethically in a hypothetical situation with a hypothetical omnipotence in a hypothetical world would have acted like the ESOC. I am sorry if I have interpretaded you in a wrong manner, it just that you showed contentment with what happenned so I ascribed (is that the right word for the sentence?) you as beign on the ESOC's side.
The point I was trying to make is that you (not *YOU* but, all of us) shouldn't be happy or think that it is a good thing when your enemies ( I'm looking for a weaker word for 'enemies') fall this way, because tomorrow it might be you.

And no, I stumbled on your blog by accident while looking for an english version of "Princess Maker". I remember playing the 2nd 9 years ago' and it was pretty good and original.

As for my points, you missunderstood me (or what's more likely I just haven't explained myself properly).

I was not comparing the stores right for denying particular items with racial hatred.
The first example (of racial exlusion) was to show that free market can be cold. That is it.
It wasn't a comment on the banning situation, it was just to show that sometimes the free market gets restrictions, and just because you can, doesn't mean you should.
I gave this example because you stated that if it is voluntary then it necessarily good (have I missunderstood you?). So this example was just in case you are a die hard extreme 19th century British libertarian.

My argument relating to the Rapelay mess was that this is not a case of a bunch of stores deciding not to buy a certain product, like what was reported with Amazon (where I also feel something is wrong due to their position in the retail world, but I guess they have the right to do whatever they please with their property), but rather a monopolistic organization which is needed to be passed through in order for most of the shops to even consider about buying this game, decides on a simple whimp (or not), to deny a vital service from a certain element. The ESOC is not a group of shops (and quite frankly, I'm not sure that such an organaized group would't constitute as an unlawful cartel), deciding what to buy and what not, but the only body which purpose is to rate any game that goes through them in order for shops to make informed proprietary decisions.

Yes I am familiar with the Falluja story, and while not liking it as well, this a *completely* different situation where the creators of the game, anticipatibg a negative consumer reaction and poor sales,have decided not to relesae the game.
While with Rapelay, its like the National Veterenarian Asociation not wanting to check and give a seal of approval to a certain meat producer thus criticaly limiting its ability to sell and effectively driving it out of business (assuming that veterenarian meat checks are not madatory by law).

P.s Where are you from anyway?

סיגי said...

So what that's it?
You don't want to respond?
Fine, but at least say that, don't just leave me hanging there...