Regarding Gaming Journalism: Please Ignore News That Isn't News
Recently, we've started to notice a nasty trend popping up in our world of video game journalism, and it certainly isn't helping our image. Yes, we understand there are still children out there, pretending to be journalists as they sit in their parent's basement skipping another English class at the community college. This hurts us terribly, and the professionals get lost in the depressing shuffle.
As a general rule, a news reporter of any kind isn't allowed to have an opinion. No opinion of any kind is allowed in anything they write; that is reserved for editorials. Now, we at PSXE are in violation of this rule all the time and we freely admit it, because we wish to connect with our readers on a more personal note from time to time. However, we're also not telling you to believe our opinion is news, because it never is, as there is no fact in opinion. And yet, regarding Blu-Ray, all we've seen over the past month is a ton of doomsday articles supposedly produced as "news," and yet none include even a single solitary shred of official statistics to back up their argument. Take this crap from GamerTell, for instance. The headline is clearly that of a news article, and it tells the reader that at some point during the Consumer Electronics Show, a speaker or representative stood up and made that statement (or one similar). There would be examples of - for instance - a Microsoft executive, issuing numbers that prove Blu-Ray is a sinking ship, and it could "take down the PS3 with it." There would be quotes, source citations, etc, etc, etc.
Instead, several completely random statistics are thrown in so the author can make his own opinion (as idiotic as it is) sound like fact. And GamerTell is hardly the only video game "publication" guilty of this recently, because I see it at every turn. The worst part is that many of the readers out there can't differentiate between real news and fake news. This makes things go crazy. In reality, Blu-Ray is far ahead of DVD after two years (comparing the first two years of each format), and Blu-Ray sales were most certainly up during the holiday season. In fact, they've continued to rise at a fairly steady rate since HD-DVD went down. PS3 sales continue to rise, all of Hollywood is now on the Blu-Ray bandwagon (that's what killed HD-DVD, if you will recall), and there's really no stopping it now. Of course, as DVD is the entrenched format, it will stick around for quite some time, but in no way is Blu-Ray "in jeopardy." The economy has forced a slowdown in product purchases, which is why Blu-Ray player sales were slow in the past few months, but that's hardly an indicator of doom for the format.
In short, Blu-Ray is fine, the PS3 is fine; both continue to rise, and Sony has no intention of discontinuing either. They'll both be around for a very long time, so please, ignore the non-news. Read the articles carefully. See if the headline is even remotely reinforced by the content. And please, if you're not a journalist, don't act like one. Just go do your little blog somewhere and stop pulling the rest of us down with you. You're the reason gaming journalists still don't get any respect, regardless of how hard the real professionals try to polish the image.
P.S. This, right here? It's an editorial. Loaded with opinion. Not news. GET IT?
1/9/2009 Ben Dutka