BlackListed

Gorrath

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CaitSeith said:
Gorrath said:
CaitSeith said:
Karadalis said:
The real idiocy of this all is:

Kotaku isnt even really blacklisted...

They are just being ignored by two publishers. Not by the entire industry.

Said two publishers havent even colaborated in their decision to ignore Kotaku for all we know...

Kotaku is simply using the word "blacklisted" because it sounds so much more evil and generates more clicks then simply saying "Bethesda and ubisoft dont call back anymore!"
Blacklisted is a term used when a publisher or developer denies contact and review copies to a reviewer. It's been used like that before, and it doesn't require to involve the whole industry to use the term; because each company has their own blacklist.
I believe the confusion is because usually blacklisting is used to mean when a group of major industry players keep a list and jointly deny contact/hiring/some other benefit from whoever's on the list. The practice itself is unethical and in some instances illegal. To call a single entity refusing to speak to another single entity "blacklisting" fits the technical definition but should not be conflated with the unethical, industry-wide practice. So while some might call what Ubi or Bethesda did "blacklisting" it seems a cheap attempt to have the reader conflate it with the unethical/illegal practice that involves collusion. Whether or not Kotaku means for their readers to conflate the two I can't speculate but it's a pretty poor way to describe the situation in my opinion.
It's cheap only if you expect the reader to not be familiar with gaming journalism terminology.
I've never, myself, ever seen the term used that way and I frequent multiple games journalism outlets. So yes, a writer should expect that their use of a term like "blacklist" may cause confusion among their readers. What's more, one should be particularly careful about using a term that often implies unethical and often illegal practice when referring to activity that is neither. I've no idea who started using blacklist to mean what you say it means here but it was not a good choice then and it's surely not a good choice to continue the practice, especially when you write a piece designed to make yourself seem like a terribly aggrieved party.
 

TheMysteriousGX

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Is it really spoiling the release of a game when you're saying there's going to be a sequel to a franchise that's done really well?

I mean, would I have to worry about Take Two cutting me off because I let people know they're working on Grand Theft Auto 6? Is that really a surprise?

I mean, sure, Intro script and casting call stuff. ~oh no~, whatever will Bethesda do, besides revel in some premature hype. ~oh no~, Assassin's Creed is getting another game and it'll have a grappling hook, stop the fucking presses.

Publisher: "Play ball or we'll cut you off."
Readers: "We're okay with this."

Don't get me wrong, everybody involved is well within their rights to do what they're doing. I'm just indulging myself in some slippery slope fallacy. I mean, last year we had a group of people asking a Publisher to cut off a Review site because they thought the game was scored too low for the wrong reason. Between that and the reaction to Kotaku revealing they've been cut off from Bethesda for two years and Ubisoft for one, I wouldn't exactly be shocked if more EA like behavior started cropping up.

After all, the readers certainly aren't backing up the press, so maybe inflate those scores a bit more lest Daddy Publisher gets sad.
 

ShakerSilver

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altnameJag said:
It should be noted that what Kotaku leaked regarding Fallout 4 were the very revealing documents pertaining to the entire intro sequence of the game.
https://archive.is/7Nk2o
http://kotaku.com/leaked-documents-reveal-that-fallout-4-is-real-set-in-1481322956
If you've played the game, then you can see that it was very accurate.
 

cleric of the order

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dirtysteve said:
Until the pubs weigh in, we have only Kotaku's word on why they were blacklisted. And their word is't worth much.

A senior Bioware dev went for the jugular on Twitter, not representing the company mind you, but his own views.

Penny Arcade have also released a comic

http://www.penny-arcade.com/comic
It's worth reading the editorial with it too. We're starting to get more and more views on what the industry really thinks of Kotaku and their ilk, and it's not pretty.
I actually Really like this one.
The monk and the scorpion is one of my favorite stories.
Also it doesn't have blatant memes
 

dyre

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I haven't been around for awhile, but why does everyone hate Kotaku? They're not really Pulitzer quality journalists, but I find their articles to be pretty good by the standards of "games journalism." Even their click-baity stuff usually actually delivers whatever the headlines imply.

In terms of gaming-related news from sites that I frequent/have frequented in the past, I'd say:

Ars Technica > Kotaku > Destructoid > Escapist > IGN > Gamespot
 

TheMysteriousGX

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ShakerSilver said:
altnameJag said:
It should be noted that what Kotaku leaked regarding Fallout 4 were the very revealing documents pertaining to the entire intro sequence of the game.
https://archive.is/7Nk2o
http://kotaku.com/leaked-documents-reveal-that-fallout-4-is-real-set-in-1481322956
If you've played the game, then you can see that it was very accurate.
Yes, the Intro sequence. The part that, in my youth, would've been spoiled months in advance by the demo. If it were the ending, or the twist, or literally almost anything else, I would expect Bethesda to care.

But it's the intro. The bit of the game that goes on the disc that comes with the magazine. The hook upon which you snag the player for the rest of the game. The ideal part of the game to start the hype machine.

Honestly, if not for Bethesda blacking out Kotaku, I'd have thought the leak was intentional considering it was in the aftermath of that hoax.
 

ShakerSilver

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altnameJag said:
Yes, the Intro sequence. The part that, in my youth, would've been spoiled months in advance by the demo. If it were the ending, or the twist, or literally almost anything else, I would expect Bethesda to care.

But it's the intro. The bit of the game that goes on the disc that comes with the magazine. The hook upon which you snag the player for the rest of the game. The ideal part of the game to start the hype machine.

Honestly, if not for Bethesda blacking out Kotaku, I'd have thought the leak was intentional considering it was in the aftermath of that hoax.
True, the leaked info may have been rather innocuous despite being leaked over a year before Bethesda would introduce the game proper, but the fact that Bethesda was willing to break ties with Kotaku over this shows how much the industry wishes to control information for their releases and how they expect the press to follow along with this.
 

FEichinger

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altnameJag said:
~oh no~, Assassin's Creed is getting another game and it'll have a grappling hook, stop the fucking presses.
This short passage is precisely why there was no reason whatsoever for Kotaku to publish the leaks. It's trivial information that we would've received on the terms of the source eventually. Kotaku chose not to respect that and instead publish it on their own terms. The result is a broken working relationship - with the appropriate consequences.

It's highly ironic that you used the phrase "stop the presses" here: a phrase that refers specifically to urgently publishing special information, rather than continuing with the existing print run.
 

crimson5pheonix

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What Bethesda and Ubisoft did was somewhat petty and couldn't have happened to a nicer bunch of people. I'll care when it happens to someone other than Kotaku.
 

TheMysteriousGX

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ShakerSilver said:
True, the leaked info may have been rather innocuous despite being leaked over a year before Bethesda would introduce the game proper, but the fact that Bethesda was willing to break ties with Kotaku over this shows how much the industry wishes to control information for their releases and how they expect the press to follow along with this.
That's exactly what I don't like about it, to be honest. Given the timing, I cannot see the reason Bethesda would object to this sort of thing besides sending a message.

There's no way in hell we're going to get ethical journalism if we don't try and prevent publishers from stopping any journalism.
 

Atmos Duality

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Ethics in gaming journalism is gaming's unicorn.
You can discuss it at any length, but if you search for it you only find horses.

Case in point: There is no breach in ethics, nor does this have anything to do with gaming journalism, because Kotaku (by their own words and actions) AREN'T JOURNALISTS.

But even if they pretended to be journalists, it'd still be a farcical claim.

What really happened: Three for-profit private companies had a falling out (get it? hurr) over control of proprietary information. Information whose sole purpose is to lead consumer cattle around by the nose with hype and "juicy bits" of info leaks.

Bloggers regurgitate and spin what they're given because they're far more about "entertainment" than "facts". They're far more concerned with opinions, audience retention and audience shaping (politics).
This mode describes Kotaku, and virtually all mainstream press. (not just gaming, but news at large these days)

Entertainment is fun, but ultimately a fabrication made to amuse. (not about ethics)

Journalists investigate; they dig for information to find the truth, regardless of whether their quarry wants them to or not. Journalism is concerned more with ethics, because only in pursuit of the truth can ethics be found.

(there's more to it than being nosy obviously; the Paparazzi are extremely nosy, but for the purposes of entertainment [celebrity worship and rumor-mongering] than anything of factual or ethical merit.)
 

Gorrath

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dyre said:
I haven't been around for awhile, but why does everyone hate Kotaku? They're not really Pulitzer quality journalists, but I find their articles to be pretty good by the standards of "games journalism." Even their click-baity stuff usually actually delivers whatever the headlines imply.

In terms of gaming-related news from sites that I frequent/have frequented in the past, I'd say:

Ars Technica > Kotaku > Destructoid > Escapist > IGN > Gamespot
Somewhat maybe partially tongue-in-cheek my list goes:

Ars>Escapist (though Escapist is my favorite)>Destructoid>IGN>Gamespot>Gamefaqs>/v/>my grandmother>a piece of toast>Kotaku
 

TheMysteriousGX

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FEichinger said:
altnameJag said:
~oh no~, Assassin's Creed is getting another game and it'll have a grappling hook, stop the fucking presses.
This short passage is precisely why there was no reason whatsoever for Kotaku to publish the leaks. It's trivial information that we would've received on the terms of the source eventually. Kotaku chose not to respect that and instead publish it on their own terms. The result is a broken working relationship - with the appropriate consequences.

It's highly ironic that you used the phrase "stop the presses" here: a phrase that refers specifically to urgently publishing special information, rather than continuing with the existing print run.
I feel it works on a couple levels, yeah.

That's the trick though, isn't it? Why publish something you know first, when you could publish the PR team's regurgitated press release at the same time as everyone else?

Why not just be the unofficial PR shills for the publishers? That's all we readers really want.
 

eberhart

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CaitSeith said:
Amaror said:
CaitSeith said:
Personally i would not consider what kotaku did or what bethesda or Activision did as something ethically wrong. Kotaku can publish information if they think it's important to the public and Bethesda and Activision don't have any obligation to supply anyone with free copies of their game or promotional material. No matter if they call themselves Journalists or bloggers.
But considering to outstanding ethical questions you mention in your post, there allready is a guide for ethical journalistic behaviour.

http://www.spj.org/ethicscode.asp

Doing a quick scan of that kotaku may be in the wrong here:
Avoid undercover or other surreptitious methods of gathering information unless traditional, open methods will not yield information vital to the public.

I think we can all agree that the leaked information was not vital to the public?
I think that's debatable. Is the revelation of a specific game being developed vital info for the gaming community? Because when official revelations are made, the gaming community goes crazy (of joy and/or anger).

The question here is, what can be defined as vital for the gaming community?
I don't think "gaming community" and "public" are interchangeable here. This particular line of defense would exonerate every shit pulled by the worst paparazzo-driven rags. Because their publications can be defined as "vital for community of people obsessed with private lives of others". Or, you know, a section of the public they're catering to.

I read that part as pretty specific. Certain methods are acceptable when those methods alone can yield information vital to *the public*. Not "people who enjoy certain stuff". So no, "undercover and surreptidious methods" are not acceptable when goals can be defined as click-baity self-interest and, perhaps, delivering some low-quality entertainment to their readers. Bethesda abusing their workforce? Ubisoft cheating on their taxes? EA investing even more money in testing acid on puppies? This is something that could be defined as "vital to the public". Too bad Kotaku has something 9,000% more effective than a dozen of blacklists in terms of preventing them from reporting on something like that. Being Kotaku.
 

ShakerSilver

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altnameJag said:
One also has to wonder how complicit the gaming press has been in regards to the information control of corporate gaming. The relationship is rather profitable for both parties - make hype pieces and give out info at the companies discretion and continue to be invited to exclusive press events, get more info, generate more clicks and ad revenue. The way Kotaku talked about their "blacklisting" to me seemed more like whinging that they were punished for acting poorly in the business relationship, rather than standing by their actions.
 

CaitSeith

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eberhart said:
CaitSeith said:
Amaror said:
I think that's debatable. Is the revelation of a specific game being developed vital info for the gaming community? Because when official revelations are made, the gaming community goes crazy (of joy and/or anger).

The question here is, what can be defined as vital for the gaming community?
I don't think "gaming community" and "public" are interchangeable here. This particular line of defense would exonerate every shit pulled by the worst paparazzo-driven rags. Because their publications can be defined as "vital for community of people obsessed with private lives of others". Or, you know, a section of the public they're catering to.

I read that part as pretty specific. Certain methods are acceptable when those methods alone can yield information vital to *the public*. Not "people who enjoy certain stuff". So no, "undercover and surreptidious methods" are not acceptable when goals can be defined as click-baity self-interest and, perhaps, delivering some low-quality entertainment to their readers. Bethesda abusing their workforce? Ubisoft cheating on their taxes? EA investing even more money in testing acid on puppies? This is something that could be defined as "vital to the public". Too bad Kotaku has something 9,000% more effective than a dozen of blacklists in terms of preventing them from reporting on something like that. Being Kotaku.
First define who you mean as *the public* then. Because, who else but the gaming community reads news from gaming sites (or Kotaku)?
 

Revolutionary

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While I somewhat agree that what Bethesda is doing here is shitty (But you know still illegal, so I can see Bethesda's point). It's entirely unreasonable to expect people who care about ethics in games journalism to rush to the defence of Polygon and Kotaku AKA literally the worst publications in terms of ethical journalism.
In principle this is something they *might* be mad about, but these outlets that are the main source of all the things those people complain about. Well grey, I guess you're just like everyone else, and only care about ethics when it bothers you personally.
 

Mangod

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ShakerSilver said:
Here's the thing though: the only reason that the companies have the power to blacklist Kotaku so easily is because of how Kotaku and other press outlets have so gleefully acting as the PR-branch of the AAA industry. [a href=http://i.imgur.com/ZkzjJVm.jpg]They've all been so complicit in the bullshit the AAA industry tries to peddle[/a], never willing to criticize unless they think it will earn them more controversy clicks (like leaking some game documents).
Sooo... basically what happened with "new media" and Apple when iOS 9 was announced? (skip to 25:00)

 

TheMysteriousGX

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ShakerSilver said:
One also has to wonder how complicit the gaming press has been in regards to the information control of corporate gaming. The relationship is rather profitable for both parties - make hype pieces and give out info at the companies discretion and continue to be invited to exclusive press events, get more info, generate more clicks and ad revenue. The way Kotaku talked about their "blacklisting" to me seemed more like whinging that they were punished for acting poorly in the business relationship, rather than standing by their actions.
Well sure, being bought and paid for is always more profitable than being the press. Is the game press actually "press", or are we content with third-party PR firms?

I don't like the latter option, myself. Might as well just stamp "9.5" on the box of every AAA release.