Who Cares? Jack Tretton Cares.
Think we game journalists don't have any impact on the men who sit at the forefront of the industry? Think we're just typin' away for our own benefit, to try and drive traffic as high as possible? Think we're just trying to faithfully serve our readers? ...okay, the answer to the last one is a definite "yes," but don't think for a second that the head honchos from Sony don't care about what is written about them and their company.
SCEA president Jack Tretton handled Sony's hour-and-a-half conference at E3, and we must say, he did very well. We've seen him speak before at plenty of other events, of course, and along with the now departed Phil Harrison, we always thought Tretton was both informative and engaging. But as journalists, we have a responsibility to report the bad along with the good, and that includes our own opinions when editorials are involved. So what happens when we interpret some of Sony's news as bad? Well, Tretton says he "bleeds" when something like that happens. At the end of a bonus one-hour roundtable after the E3 conference, the last question asked was, "Do you ever get nervous when you say something and you see all the keyboards light up at the same time?" Tretton replied:
"I get nervous every time that I open my mouth. I'd love to tell you that I don't read everything that gets written, and you know, I do, let them all eat cake. I bleed with every word that's written. You can't make everybody happy, not everyone is going to agree with you. I care about some unknown guy that responds to one of your blogs and trashes something I said. It's tough to make everyone in your family love you let alone everyone in the world. It's the price of admission, but yeah, it freaks me out."
We often forget how easy it is to sit back and judge from the comfort of our own chairs at home, safe from scrutiny or backlash (for the most part). We always have to appreciate the job requirements for something like "SCEA president," because we sure as heck don't want to be up on that stage! But we still soldier forth in our jobs as he does in his; if Sony doesn't do so well, and the news is bad - 'cough' the PS3 launch 'cough' - we're gonna tell our readers about it. But when things start to go right, guys like Tretton will reap the rewards of our words. It's just the nature of the business.
7/18/2008 Ben Dutka