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Thompson threatens Microsoft over GTA4, ignores Sony

Kyle Orland

Everybody's favorite lawyer is at it again, this time sending a heads up letter to Microsoft chairman Bill Gates promising to "undertake various means to prohibit and stop the sale of [Grand Theft Auto 4] to minors." The letter, a copy of which was sent to Joystiq, warns Microsoft against "participating in any fashion, directly or indirectly, in such sales to minors." We can only guess than indirect participation would be simply allowing the game to be released on the Xbox 360, and we doubt that Microsoft will be willing to give up its day-and-date bombshell just because of a vague threat from Thompson.

In the letter, Thompson cites an Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility report which shows game retailers like Target and Best Buy are actually "doing a better job of controlling sales of violent video games to children." Wouldn't a study that shows retailers doing a worse job have been a better choice? Also, wouldn't such a letter have been more effective going to a retailer than a console maker that has little to no control on point-of-purchase sales ratings enforcement?

And why is Thompson targeting Microsoft while ignoring Sony, which is also planning to host GTA4 on its system later this year? Last year Sony was public enemy No. 1 for allowing GTA in Japan. Has the PS3's launch-time troubles made them a less attractive target?

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