GameSpot Scandal Backlash, Boycott
In by far the biggest news of the week, GameSpot's Jeff Gerstmann gets fired for handing out a low review score and refusing to change it in the face of...external influences. At least, that's how the story goes, as Eidos, GameSpot, or Gerstmann has never actually verified the facts. But most believe this is the case, and now, the backlash and outcry is getting a little crazy.
First, the message boards erupted with thousands of posts that were very anti-GameSpot oriented, which caused a moderation nightmare and sparked even more action. At last report, over 500 individuals have canceled their pay subscription to the site, with many more threatening to do so unless an explanation is given. But they've already moved past this, and some very upset GameSpot fans are starting to get organized. They're not talking about a simple boycott of the site; they're talking about boycotting the advertisers that use GS for promotion.
An e-mail has been sent to a variety of sites earlier today, and here's what it says-
"Since Gamespot does a lot of thinking with their wallet, we thought we’d speak their language. We’re not just calling for a boycott of Gamespot as a whole, but for a boycott of their ADVERTISERS. Let’s send a message to the people that choose to do business with Gamespot, that they are associating their products with a dishonest organization. If just a few of these companies pull their ads, maybe Gamespot will get a clue."
Well, that's ambitious. We get the feeling people are going to continue buying great games and avoiding the bad ones, so perhaps this boycott would impact a gamer's enjoyment of his/her hobby. Then again, it's a righteous cause, so kudos for that. We'll see what comes of this (probably nothing), but either way, it now seems readily apparent that this scandal isn't going to go away so easily. Sorry, GameSpot.
12/1/2007 Ben Dutka