As I said before, gamers are becoming more and more diverse by the minute. But for every 80 year old grandmother collecting skulls in Halo 3 there exists a ten-fold cluster of people who are uninformed and unfamiliar with gaming. This is fine; no one should be obligated to learn about something in which they have no interest. But when news programs start blasting out embarrassingly alarmist headlines such as "'SE'XBOX?" and clueless commentators are given a forum to make gross inaccuracies about video games, then you can't fault grandma for giving your 360 the stink eye.

It seems that every youth-oriented tragedy of the past decade has been tied to gaming. Excluding feelings of sympathy and sorrow, one of the first thoughts I had after the Virginia Tech massacre was "I wonder how long until someone tries to publicly blame this on a FPS?" Answer: less than 8 hours from the first victim's death. While gamers are slowly percolating into most areas of society, news programming teams still appear to be sorely missing a gaming advocate. But all is not terrible. The big boys are stepping in, and voices are being heard. To their credit, EA stood firmly behind Mass Effect after the "'SE'XBOX?" nonsense. And Cooper "I know very little about this thing I'm so strongly against" Lawrence later retracted her statements after actually witnessing someone play the game. Mark that as a small victory for gamers: a strike was made against us, and we fought back. Freedom of the press is one of the pillars of a great society, but let's do our best to keep them honest.



This article was originally published on Joystiq.

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