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Killing Rumors Is Awfully Noble But Sadly, Entirely Unrealistic

It's disheartening when truth clashes with reality.

The idea that video game journalists have to stop reporting rumors is both noble and legitimate. I started out writing little local stories for the newspapers and two things are true: 1. Reporters are never supposed to have an opinion, and 2. Rumors and anything that isn't factual should - ideally - be held back until the facts can be nailed down.

Of course, there are always gray areas. Reporting on potential threats to homeland security are, according to the exact definition of the term, "rumors." Heck, if you really want to get literal, half the headlines you see in a newspaper on a daily basis are at least partly based on rumor or hearsay. That's how the transferring of information works among humans; there's a lot of unsubstantiated things in this world. Therefore, to claim that game reporting is the only branch of journalism that commits the rumor sin is inaccurate and/or just plain biased.

However, it's certainly true that rumors probably comprise a larger percentage of headlines in this industry. And as the article (linked to above) indicates, the reasons are obvious: Websites require traffic in order to survive. In this industry, only a scant few don't really have to worry about hits; if you're GameSpot or IGN, you're not agonizing over getting eye-catching headlines on a particularly slow day. But for 98% of the game reporting world, those headlines are essential for survival. It's unfortunate but unless someone has a solution to this problem, the rumors will persist out of sheer necessity.

The bottom line is that the Internet isn't a newspaper. People talk...or rather, "talk." Whatever, they communicate, right? In order to get traffic, you need to get those people talking. You need to light up the message boards and forums; not just the comment section of your own website. Now, in one respect, this is bad form in the journalism world. That much is plain. But on the other hand, the Internet demands new rules and hence, may not necessarily ascribe to the same set of print-based rules for the trade. In a field that interacts with its readers probably more than any other industry, that interaction is critical.

We at PSXE try to only report big-time rumors, or rumors that are exclusive to our ears. Beyond that, it's mostly just about getting a discussion going when it comes to various headlines. It's the way of the world right now. And while my background tells me a lot of this would be frowned on elsewhere, I'm not entirely certain that rumors and discussion-generating topics are altogether a bad thing.

Tags: rumors, game reporting, gaming journalism, gaming industry, video game rumors

6/21/2012 9:20:07 PM Ben Dutka

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Comments (54 posts)

WorldEndsWithMe
Thursday, June 21, 2012 @ 9:47:15 PM
Reply

I like the rumors when they are based on something because keeping an ear to the ground in this business gives you a clearer picture of how to proceed as a consumer, what to be excited about, etc. That way you don't get bamboozled by the hype and for folks like me the way the industry works is just downright fascinating. There's nothing else quite like it in entertainment.

Most folks at the top won't comment on rumors nor will they speculate, so why the deuce can't the gamers do some speculating?

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Gordo
Thursday, June 21, 2012 @ 10:01:27 PM
Reply

I quite like Fleetwood Mac. Don't know what you have against them?

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WorldEndsWithMe
Thursday, June 21, 2012 @ 10:30:00 PM

huh?

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FatherSun
Thursday, June 21, 2012 @ 11:06:41 PM

@world, Fleetwood Mac are RUMOUR/ED to be creating a AAA game for the PS3 that will also run on IOS, XBOX, Android Wii, Dreamcast and all Atari consoles.

Google it!

Last edited by FatherSun on 6/21/2012 11:09:19 PM

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WorldEndsWithMe
Thursday, June 21, 2012 @ 11:16:49 PM

That's... stupid.

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Gordo
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 1:10:32 AM

Sorry World. I think you need to brush up on your 70's rock... :-)

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WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 1:49:53 AM

No... no I don't :)

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tes37
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 6:27:06 AM

The Fleetwood Mac Rumours dvd shows a lot of what went into making that album. A very talented group of individuals, especially Lindsey Buckingham.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 12:36:11 PM

The 90s was the greatest time for music.

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Metal Head
Thursday, June 21, 2012 @ 10:08:33 PM
Reply

Are conspiracy theories consider in the same realm of rumors? After all, they are base on some true or speculation of actual events. Did Kurt Cobain committed suicide?, or was murder by his wife?. We live in an age where in order to sell a product you need a rumor to get consumers awareness.

Last edited by Metal Head on 6/21/2012 10:10:03 PM

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WorldEndsWithMe
Thursday, June 21, 2012 @ 10:27:31 PM

For example?

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LimitedVertigo
Thursday, June 21, 2012 @ 10:14:16 PM
Reply

I've learned there are PSXE rumors and then there are N4G rumors :)

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Sir Shak
Thursday, June 21, 2012 @ 10:58:17 PM

And there are PSXE rumours that are submitted to N4G. :)

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FatherSun
Thursday, June 21, 2012 @ 11:00:50 PM

G4N= Good 4 Nothing!

Seriously though N4G is like throwing dice. You never know what may come up. Its a melting pot of fact, fiction, rumor and speculation. With some myths and fairy tales thrown in.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Thursday, June 21, 2012 @ 11:13:52 PM

Shak, all articles unique to PSXE are submitted to N4G. As is typically the case at every single other video game source on earth.

You would know that if you weren't always so hell-bent on being - wait for it - a di**.

Last edited by Ben Dutka PSXE on 6/21/2012 11:14:31 PM

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LimitedVertigo
Thursday, June 21, 2012 @ 11:34:11 PM

Ben you're far more calm about things than I would be. I would have banned his ignorant ass a long time ago.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Thursday, June 21, 2012 @ 11:45:45 PM

Unfortunately, besides the ever-present attitude, he hasn't violated any policy.

Although after he accused me of lying about a rumor I posted and started that mocking topic in the forums, he's on the thinnest ice imaginable.

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Lawless SXE
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 7:09:24 AM

Ugh, N4G... what a f**king cesspit.

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Underdog15
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 9:43:33 PM

Yeah, the forums are where di**s are always welcome. XD I always wonder about those kids...

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Sir Shak
Monday, June 25, 2012 @ 3:58:56 AM

Yes, I'm quivering in my boots, Ben.

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FatherSun
Thursday, June 21, 2012 @ 10:55:57 PM
Reply

"I love rumors! Facts can be so misleading, but rumors, true or false, are often revealing."

Col. Hans Landa

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ZenChichiri
Thursday, June 21, 2012 @ 10:56:10 PM
Reply

I think it's personally alright to report rumors, because like you said, it creates discussion about the topic at hand. The thing about the Internet is that there is a comments section and we can all talk how we feel about a particular subject. Print based media doesn't have this, as if we want to comment on something we would probably have to send it to an opinions section of a newspaper, and how slow is that!

It's up to us to critically think about the rumors based on the current evidence presented to us. It's not the messengers fault that people blindly believe everything they read.

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Beamboom
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 4:38:02 AM
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I dunno, a serious news site has just as big a need for traffic and headlines as gaming sites, so I don't think "the need for traffic" is a valid excuse at all. That more represent the *temptation*. Just like any other temptation that makes press ethics so incredibly difficult in practice.

Tabloid papers (the paper version) are selling their entire newspaper on their headlines. Their entire business(!) is depending on their front page. Yet, still the press ethics applies to them too, as they obviously should.

No serious paper post any unconfirmed rumor just cause they "need the extra sales". No, they do proper research, and *then* publish it once they find there is any truth in the rumor.

I think the same should apply to *every* kind of journalism.


Last edited by Beamboom on 6/22/2012 5:28:31 AM

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 9:50:28 AM

You actually believe that about journalism, do you Beamboom?

And by the way, while all sites require traffic, the biggest sites are basically guaranteed that traffic. That's the biggest point you're really not getting, and it changes the entire situation.

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Beamboom
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 10:39:34 AM

I do believe - no strike that, I *know* that serious journalists don't just publish anything they receive in the mail with no further research if only it can create big enough sales/traffic/good headlines. Just imagine how reliable the news would have been then... :D

And even if they did, it doesn't change anything regarding the principles of journalistic integrity.

All In My Opinion, and I now talk in general, principal terms, not about any specific genre. Maybe you are right that the gaming press have less integrity than the rest, what do I know. But it should not be like that.

So in short, I agree with that article.

Last edited by Beamboom on 6/22/2012 10:45:36 AM

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 10:44:06 AM

Nobody said they published every random thing they got in the mail. I said even the most serious news reporting often has no choice but to include rumor and hearsay, even if they make it clear that it's unsubstantiated. There are nasty things like deadlines in this industry, and if you think that doesn't affect how much truth and rumor gets into a story, you've obviously never worked in this field.

Furthermore, the entire point I'm making is that when you rely on the Internet for survival, the rules change, like it or not.

Last edited by Ben Dutka PSXE on 6/22/2012 10:45:18 AM

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Beamboom
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 10:58:00 AM

Of course deadlines is a huge challenge for a working journalist. In particular on the internet, I believe that's widely known.
One can easily end up being just a distributor of press releases, and that's not what journalism is about.

I should now add, not to brag but because it's relevant, that I've worked for Norways biggest commercial broadcaster and media house for almost a decade (TV 2 in Norway, I believe my employee blog on their site is still accessible should anyone doubt my word here), so I got *some* insight and understanding of journalistic challenges.

And yes, internet as a media channel has earned a really bad reputation for sloppy journalism. Something that the bigger, more serious institutions *try* to work against. But it's not easy, especially not when Joe Average and his entire family can publish whatever they like, almost wherever they want.

What I don't agree with you in though, Ben, and that is most of all on ideological grounds, is the attitude of, "ain't nothing we can do about it. It's just how it is. We gotta survive".
I respectfully disagree there. I think - and hope - serious journalism also got a place on the internet. Even if it costs them a few hits in the short term, I believe they will earn on it in the longer term.

And if these thoughts makes me naive, then I shall continue to live happily as that. :)


Last edited by Beamboom on 6/22/2012 11:23:07 AM

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WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 11:53:43 AM

You do realize that if this site and most others only reported straight up official news they wouldn't be here any more right?

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Beamboom
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 12:03:16 PM

World: Journalism is not about re-distributing official press releases at all. But sadly, that's what many associate with the title nowadays.

"Journalism is what somebody doesn’t want you to print. Everything else is publicity."
—Jim Hall, Beginning Reporting


Last edited by Beamboom on 6/22/2012 12:06:18 PM

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 12:12:24 PM

I'm sorry Beamboom, but as I said in the article, unless you've got a solution, the facts remain. Journalistic integrity and serious reporting absolutely does have a place on the Internet, and it even exists in some places.

But unfortunately, it will only exclusively exist (without pursuing headlines to keep the site afloat) if the source in question isn't concerned with going out of business due to a lack of traffic. And sadly, there are very few such sites.

I have always been the most ardent upholder of ethics in journalism. ...but things really do have to change when you're faced with brutal reality. If you've got a solution, though, I'm sure thousands of sites out there would love to hear it.

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Beamboom
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 12:45:25 PM

I think that deep inside we all know the solution. It's just a tough one to follow.

This challenge is nothing new, it's not something that came with the Internet. This discussion is as old as the profession itself.
There has always been the hunt for the best headlines, best stories, the breaking news. And in that rat race corners has been cut, chances have been taken, temptations has been too strong and mistakes have been made. It happens today, it happened 20 years ago, it happened when our dads were kids.

And this discussion will remain for as long as there is free press, and will be discussed by thousands of journalists across the lunch tables every single day.


Last edited by Beamboom on 6/22/2012 12:51:46 PM

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 2:17:24 PM

The Internet has changed things drastically because it's the first interactive exchange of communication where readers can instantly reply.

That is what fuels so much of the gaming journalism industry right now, because 99% of it is online. And the field of journalism has never faced this kind of thing before.

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Underdog15
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 9:50:43 PM

haha, you seriously believe that live broadcasts, especially ones reporting "on site", get all the facts before they tell you anything about it?

Lol, in developing stories, the story changes constantly!!!! And if you don't report on it first, someone else will. So, you go with the info you have so far and say that it isn't yet confirmed. And if the story does change, you used journalism buzz words and phrases like, "There's been a new development" or "I've just received word..." or "This just in, it appears that...."

And if you actually worked in broadcasting, you would KNOW this to be the case. Maybe those Norwegians are all 100% different from the rest of the world, but the facts are that people will tell you news as they hear it, call it "developing" or "we've received word from an unconfirmed source" and then follow up with, "we'll keep you updated as we learn more". THEN you have free range to be completely wrong, AND say you reported it first! lol

That's not tabloid journalism. That's HOW it's done right. And it's how you stay relevant.

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Beamboom
Saturday, June 23, 2012 @ 2:13:56 AM

Underdog,
yeah, HAHA, ROFL etc, I am such an idiot. Haha! LMAO.

It is *extremely* rare that something unprepared goes straight on air. I have not ever experienced that, but I won't say it never happens. There are always exceptions, but I have never ever heard about a producer who lets anything through at just a whim. In fact, the producer usually don't even receive anything to *consider* broadcasting unless it's already gone through some sort of quality insurance.

But in regular broadcasts on regular days with regular news it *never* happens. When the announcer say something like "this is just in" it means a journalistic work is already done on that text, or "we will get back to this story as it evolves" means that journalistic work is going on as he/she speaks. The text on the telepromter is written by someone. It's not just a twitter feed or something. :D

To allow me to be a bit frank, it is a bit sad to see what you guys think the job of a journalist is, that it's just copy-pasting of text written by others, an easy job that anyone could do, that their only purpose is to pass on rumours and speculation as fast as possible. It is not like that. And yes, it is a bit sad to see.


Last edited by Beamboom on 6/23/2012 2:41:50 AM

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___________
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 6:04:23 AM
Reply

as long as their not pie in the sky stuff ive always liked them.
allot of the times they end up being true, and sometimes its interesting to get others thoughts on it.
it is concerning however how much is leaked these days!
i mean, as IGN said when talking to watch dogs executive producer how the hell did you keep it a secret!
everything under the sun has leaked days, weeks, months before its announcement!
$ony and the PSP GO leak though has to take the cake!
that was freaking hilarious!

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tes37
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 6:16:43 AM
Reply

Rumor and speculative reporting is fine by me, especially from this site. I know there is no intentional misinformation given or bs going on.

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Lawless SXE
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 7:16:02 AM
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I dunno. I don't mind rumours so much. They're something to get excited about, even if nothing comes of them. What really annoys me is the sensationalism. Headlines designed to capture attention, even if the article that they lead to is ridiculously droll. Trying to make mountains out of molehills. I see it on a pretty regular basis and it just gets on my nerves.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 11:59:21 AM
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Here's the thing, if you (like many of us here) keep an eye on gaming news around the industry every day then you have a broad base of knowledge from which to draw when considering rumors. How likely are they? How unlikely? What would happen in this case or that case if X is true? This drives discussion, participation, and new member signups. These things are critical for survival in an internet environment.

Furthermore, this is entertainment, not crime reporting. You will see the same at any pop culture or movie news online magazine.

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Beamboom
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 12:16:59 PM

I agree in what you say here about this being just entertainment, and should be treated as such. Fair enough. It's not serious news reporting. True.
Still, in my humble opinion the journalistic principles should remain across ALL media.

You as a journalist should differ from an amateur in that you know your craft, you do what the amateur blogs don't bother doing. And you should do it *well*!
What else can possibly differ your work from any other blog out there? *Anyone* can re-post rumours and press releases. Anyone!

We could add another, related problem to the discussion too: What's your opinion on paid content? Someone pays for an article to be published. It's still not crime reporting, just entertainment. Is that ok too?

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WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 12:43:54 PM

That's where journalistic integrity comes into play, though you may report on the fact that(hypothetically)someone accidentally mentioned Heavenly Sword 2 in their LinkedIn profile (which qualifies as a rumor that the game is confirmed) you don't take money to defend the ending of Mass Effect 3. If you did nobody would take you seriously.

As far as online magazines versus lunatic blogs go it's up to the discretion of gamers to decide which is which and I never have a difficult time doing that.

Furthermore, in this particular entertainment milieu people expect headlines every day and the fact of the matter is more often than not when you actually call up Sony or MS or Epic or Naughty Dog and ask for comment on the latest rumors they will not comment.

It should also be noted that what we all say as fans does ultimately seem to have some effect on the games being made, so the more noise we make in favor of or against things as details emerge the better the game turns out. The more opportunity to speak up, even on rumors, the better.

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Beamboom
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 12:59:57 PM

You do mix a lot of different topics and discussions here now, World. You must separate between the press and consumers. What we as fans do and express is completely irrelevant. And journalism is much, much more than just picking up the phone and ask for a public statement.

And I don't think it should be up to the readers to separate nonsense from reality, fact from fiction. That's what we got the editors and journalists for, that's what they should do for us.

In fact, it should be *the* major difference between "fanzines"/blogs/forum posts/readers letters/whatever, and the professional press.


Last edited by Beamboom on 6/22/2012 1:02:12 PM

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WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 1:10:50 PM

You cannot, cannot, cannot separate readers from articles with the advent of the internet. It cannot be done with any hope of success. This IS the paradigm. These things are interrelated.

Shall we strip away editorial commentary as well? If you could wave a magic wand and make the whole of the internet gaming business a bare bones fact posting machine it would be devastating to the industry as a whole.

Last edited by WorldEndsWithMe on 6/22/2012 1:13:06 PM

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Beamboom
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 1:22:52 PM

... While I believe we not only can, but must.

And surely commentaries has existed long before the Internet? I don't see how that is related to the topic either.
Have what you've read in magazines and newspapers over the years been just bare bones facts? Of course not. That sounds more like an encyclopedia... :)

I trust you don't get insulted by me saying so, but I get the impression that you got a rather vague and limited definition of what the journalistic profession really *is*.

At least you're not alone. Look at IGN: Is it just me or do *every* writer over at IGN have the title "editor"? What the **** is that all about?
An editor is a profession of its own, different from a journalist, and the synergy between an editor and his journalists is an *essential* part of what we discuss here. You can't have a staff all made up of editors, that hollows out the entire title!


Last edited by Beamboom on 6/22/2012 1:45:31 PM

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WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 2:02:06 PM

No worries, falsehoods don't offend me. IGN has those titles up because the writers are considered "news editors" and journalism includes editing.

You do seem to be advocating an all out fact machine with no room for the broader sort of reporting that is most definitely a part of journalism. So no my definition isn't limited, it is, as per usual, the literal dictionary definition.

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Beamboom
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 2:14:24 PM

Well then I don't understand why you think that's what I am advocating here, but so be it.

But an editors job is ironically not to edit articles. An editor is the person who assigns articles to journalists and oversees (part of) a publication. It's typically the one who a journalist pitch an idea to for an article, as his closest superior. The editor is one level of quality insurance on the way from an idea to a published article.

But I think we managed to squeeze the last drop out of this discussion anyway.

:)


Last edited by Beamboom on 6/22/2012 3:31:20 PM

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WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 2:24:43 PM

I'm just saying it doesn't compute. If someone I knew sat at a restaurant table near Kojima and overheard some things about Ogre you bet I'd report on it even if it's unofficial.

As far as the convo goes I agree, though I'd add that again where the internet is concerned the old newspaper style setups are on the outs and you have mostly a number of job descriptions all packed into one. I long for the days of one job per person.

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Beamboom
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 3:00:03 PM

Many stories start out like that, World. But a real journalist would not jump right on the gun. He would check if for example it was known where in the world Kojima was at that moment in time, if he was in town at all. Could it even be confirmed that he was in that restaurant? That further strengthen the validity of what your source says.

How about the company Kojima was with at that restaurant - are they known? Can you find out who they were? Can they say anything? Maybe even tell you *more* than what your friend heard, based on what you already know?

... And voila, all of a sudden you might have several sources, more details, and a *real* story.

Or what if you could not find out where he was, it wasn't even known that he where in the country at all? Or that if you contacted the person Kojima supposedly were with, what if he said he wasn't even out of office that day?
What if it turns out... That your buddy didn't really hear too well what they talked about through all the restaurant noise other than he were pretty sure he heard "Ogre" and talk about a video game, he don't know Kojima *that* well but it sure was a Japanese guy at least... Would you still report on it?

You know... *That's* journalistic work. Not to just push the "publish" button as fast as possible! That's what you and I can do, jump straight to the forums and shout, "GUYS! Guess what I HEARD from a buddy today!!!!11!11". Post it on your blog, tweet'n'shout!

That's the difference. Or *should* be the difference. And that's why we need, and always will need, real journalism.

Last edited by Beamboom on 6/22/2012 3:18:43 PM

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WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 3:57:30 PM

Wouldn't work, if you don't get it up straight away you get scooped. When something happens, it is literally up on the sites that get you hits in under a minute. If you stay alive, then you have time for investigations like interviews, statistic analysis, gaming trends etc. Get it up, get people involved, then see if the people involved will comment. Amazingly they do tend to listen as per the Lara Croft rape incident.

Last edited by WorldEndsWithMe on 6/22/2012 4:05:57 PM

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Beamboom
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 4:21:19 PM

But your friend told *you* what he heard, not everyone else out there? Surely that'd give you time to do some research? To just post it as it were is just *lazy*, that's what I'd call it. And to call proper journalistic work a "fairy tale"? Just... wow.

I must say I am a bit confused, puzzled by your tone here.
I talk about journalism as a craft, as the three year long study that it is (at least here in Norway), from a much much broader perspective than just this site or any given individual, or even just gaming journalism.

But first and foremost, I want to advocate what professional journalism is and why we need it, that the internet doesn't render professional journalism obsolete. I'd rather say quite the contrary. In todays insane level of noise we need good journalism work more than ever!

Anyone can post a rumour. That's what we got Facebook and Twitter for. That's not journalism.


Last edited by Beamboom on 6/22/2012 4:28:11 PM

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Beamboom
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 4:31:40 PM

Opps, sorry, I didn't see your latest edit until I reloaded the comments just now. So please ignore parts of my comment above. Luckily my main points still stands. :)

But I'm heading for bed now. I'm sure we can continue the discussion at another time should the opportunity arise. :-)


Last edited by Beamboom on 6/22/2012 4:32:32 PM

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WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 5:29:02 PM

Oh okay I'm talking about just reporting in the gaming world. Investigative journalism in gaming is usually a wash because nobody really answers your questions unless they have agreed to an interview first. The day in day out is scanning twitter feeds, facebook pages, job postings, press releases and the like. If you stop to build a full "story" on everything your gaming website will not survive. As you can see this entire place is run by Ben and he's already way too busy to investigate every rumor at the expense of hits.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 8:36:37 PM

Beamboom, I really just think there's a disconnect between what you're saying and the harsh reality of the Internet world.

Nobody is disagreeing with you, per se. But that purist approach simply cannot fly if you wish to survive in certain environments. That's all we're saying.

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Beamboom
Saturday, June 23, 2012 @ 5:16:19 AM

If you by "environment" mean the Internet medium as a whole, I disagree. I don't think that can be described as *one* environment, but many.

If however you by "environments" mean certain working conditions, categories/types of employers, I fully agree. In certain environments it becomes meaningless to even discuss what we here talk about, because of the very nature of that environment. The places where you're not really a journalist, but a text monkey competing with other text monkeys.
But those environments should only be an early stepping stone for someone building a journalistic career, in my humble opinion. A phase.

I have deliberately avoided turning this into a discussion about "how can you maintain journalistic integrity working for an employer with no money, few advertisers, no resources, network or expertise".

However, I've been there too (I'm an old man, remember :D):
Back in my younger days, before I started working for TV2 I built a site covering clubbing/nightlife in our capital.
That was a site based on 80% voluntary work, built on pure hobby basis and enthusiasm. We eventually got rather large and got sold to a publishing company, giving us all a decent kickback after all those years. But the years before that were hard. Real hard. We all had to have a second job (or do studies) on the side.

So I understand how it is to work under similar conditions. It really is damn hard to get anything done at all, nothing comes for free. And it gets *particularly* hard once you get your site levelled up from being something that nobody cares about anyway to being a tiny competitor on a very flooded market.

But now, in retrospect, I have to admit that although I learnt a lot those years I didn't do much more than stumble into essentially every single journalistic pitfall there is. Omg how many stupid things I did. :D
I didn't *really* learn that much about journalism until I started working in a more professional environment.

So, yeah. A stepping stone. I wish for all budding journalists the chance to work for a professional employer. It really is a *world* of difference.
And just to round off where I started: I believe such working conditions has a place also on the Internet.


Last edited by Beamboom on 6/24/2012 3:36:50 AM

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xnonsuchx
Friday, June 22, 2012 @ 4:44:48 PM
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Wow! It's like you read a recent rant or two of mine. ;-)

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