The Critical 'I'

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Thursday, December 18, 2003

As I've noted recently, the television industry is going bonkers over the defection of younger viewers, and is grasping at straws over what to do. Acknowledging that videogames is one of the non-television activities that is pulling away eyeballs, attempts are being made to integrate gaming and traditional TV programming.

While I don't doubt this news, it's reports like this that turns me off to Wired so much. Check out this bit:

As for now, the age-old defense from veteran Hollywood producers and TV executives that "no one wants to watch people playing video games" has been tossed out the door with the huge success of poker TV shows.

If people can watch poker players sitting around the table, they certainly could watch the vibrant worlds of video games come to life in new and interesting ways.

Talk about specious reasoning! I'm certainly no fan of the recent poker tournament fad on TV, but to compare it to videogame gawking is idiotic. You might as well use spectator sports as a comparable example. With the poker shows, the big draw is observing the body language and nuances from the participants; you don't get that from watching a bunch of guys acting jittery while sitting in front of a videogame console. This is typical geek wishful thinking.