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Gamers Take Jack Thompson to Task

Filed under: Video Game Politics
Posted by Allison on October 20, 2005 9:57 AM
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Despite my plea to ignore Jack Thompson and stop playing his ugly little games, the crew over at the Penny-Arcade forums opted to go in the opposite direction. Instead of kicking Thompson to the curb, they chose to contact the Florida Bar Association, which, according to Ars Technica has resulted in an official investigation into Thompson's legal practices.

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Again, I suggested we all ignore Thompson, as, at the time, I believed the only way to make such an egomaniac go away was to stop feeding his ego. However, hours after I published my plea, Thompson upped the ante.

As explained in my editorial, Penny-Arcade donated money in Thompson's name to the Entertainment Software Association Foundation after Thompson failed to follow through on his satirical promise to do so. This didn't make Thompson happy. So, in typical Thompson form, he threatened Penny-Arcade, stating the web comic publisher needed to remove the story, "or else". When Penny-Arcade refused, Thompson called the police. That's right, a man who practices law for a living thought such a refusal warranted police action.

Penny-Arcade has posted the letter Thompson sent to the Seattle police department. The letter reads, in part:

A Seattle business by the name of Penny Arcade... employs certain personnel who have decided to commence and orchestrate criminal harassment of me by various means... This company has done this because I dared to go on CBS's 60 Minutes in March and again in July to explain a wrongful death lawsuit I have brought on behalf of two police officers and a police dispatcher in Fayette, Alabama, who were shot in the head and killed by Devin Moore who obsessively trained on Grand Theft Auto: Vice City to kill them.

As you may know, this incredibly violent Rockstar Games product is actually a 'cop-killing' murder simulator. There are a bunch of computer geeks out there who think that the video game industry has a constitutional right to paint a bullseye on your back and on your officers' backs... That is what this criminal harassment of me by Penny Arcade is all about. They're even selling an 'I Hate Jack Thompson' t-shirt, but that is just the tip of the iceberg. These idiots have been so careless as to post on their www.pennyarcade.com web site what they are doing regarding the harassment of me.

I look forward to working with your fine Police Department to shut this little extortion factory down and/or arrest some of its employees.

This was the Penny-Arcade forum members' call to arms, which I applaud whole-heartedly. Thanks to a handful of gamers, whom Thompson has always assumed are too stupid to be able to separate games from reality, the man's law license is being reviewed. Even if nothing happens, the gaming community is, today, making Thompson sweat heavily. I'll take that over simply kicking the man to the curb anyday. Nice work, gamers. Nice work.










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