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The Sony censorship policy and what caused it

Discussion in 'Gaming' started by Bryan^H, Apr 18, 2019.

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  1. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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    My first paragraph (about men having more money to buy stuff and power in industries to influence their products) is just historical fact. Men DO have more money than women (putting aside the reasons why that is), men have had more money than women for many generations, and men have traditionally run nearly all businesses, especially big corporations that put out things like magazines, books, and produce TV shows. So the men will decide what gets made based on who is buying the product (which is usually men). There's a reason by demographics have always focused on 18-30 year old men: they have disposable cash.

    I still disagree that men are more visually oriented than women. Women's magazines have articles about sex, along with pictures of hunky guys with big muscles and elaborate photo spreads for fashion or decor. Women have traditionally been raised to care more about their image, clothes, makeup, hairstyle, etc. and studies have shown women (because of their cultural upbringing) are more aware of the fine details in their surroundings. The real debate we're having isn't whether or not men or women are more stimulated or intrigued by the things they see, but whether or not there's ample sexual content (from racy ads to straight-up porn) being targeted to them and why that is. Women enjoy those things just as much as men, but generations of conditioning from society tells them not to or at least not to express that publicly. Again...why do you think Fabio became a celebrity when he was just a romance novel model? It wasn't because the books were good.

    Conversely, men are also just as stimulated by text as women. Men's magazines like Maxim are full of articles and not just pictures for a reason.
     
  2. Message #62 of 106 Apr 26, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2019
    Bryan^H

    Bryan^H Producer

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    Exactly. When porn magazines were still big how many were geared toward women? They were almost exclusively male specific magazines. And using a less extreme example -- Playboy Magazine was enormously popular among men, then Playgirl magazine entered the market. And that magazine was always just moderately successful, but it turns out the majority of people purchasing that magazine were gay males, so the content was changed in accordance to that fact until the magazine eventually ended.

    This alone should be a good barometer in gauging how women approach visual sexual stimulation.
     
  3. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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    Bryan - by your logic, Marvel didn't make a movie starring a black superhero (Black Panther) for so long because no black people went to see Marvel or superhero movies until 2018. Had black people been interested in seeing a black superhero, Marvel certainly would have made a movie like that sooner, right? (And before anyone tries to suggest that there were narrative or business reasons behind making BP later in the franchise, I'll just point out that it was one of the highest grossing Marvel movies that wasn't an Avengers film and is the only one to have actually won several Oscars.)

    You're suggesting that the existence of a product comes alongside the existence of the market for it. I think that's false. The ways that companies market products to people, or even come up with the products that they want to market, is way more of an art than a science. There are decisions made by people, often arbitrarily, that affect entire industries. So the fact that there is no DOA Xtreme Beach Volleyball featuring naked cartoon men that is targeted at female gamers is not indicative of whether or not women would buy and/or enjoy that, it's indicative of the fact that the people who have the ability to actually make such a game are simply choosing not to. (And for what it's worth, there is an entire genre of anime devoted to pretty gay male cartoon characters that women LOVE.)

    As I said before, what you're talking about is a cultural thing, not a biological or physiological one.
     
  4. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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    I just saw a couple different sites reporting in the last few days that Sony has sort of clarified the situation. Basically, it's not that they created NEW rules for the content of games on their platforms, but rather these rules have existed for a long time and they're not starting to really apply them and enforce them, albeit on a possibly case-by-case basis. I doubt that's going to make anyone here happy, and even I think the "case-by-case" situation is kind of stupid (it really should be all or nothing) but that's their explanation right now.
     
  5. Message #65 of 106 Apr 30, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2019
    Bryan^H

    Bryan^H Producer

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    https://www.businessinsider.com/sony-metoo-censorship-playstation-games-2019-4

    "The new guidelines are in contrast to Nintendo, which told the Wall Street Journal that sexually explicit games can be sold on the Switch as long they receive a rating from a national agency like the Entertainment Software Rating Board. Platform holders actually haven’t ever released any games that the Board has given an Adults Only rating, but M-rated games can have some sexual content and are common on all platforms."


    The report says that Sony hasn't made written changes to the policy, but multiple developers who spoke under the condition of anonymity told the Journal they have been asked to make changes to fit within the company's guidelines for sexual content. The developers said Sony lacked written guidelines regarding sexual content, and repeated requests for adjustments were inconsistent.

    "You don't know what they will say until you complete the work and submit it for review," the head of a Japanese game studio told the Wall Street Journal. A Sony official told the Journal that the policy was "introduced kind of suddenly," which is why the company hasn't offered written guidelines yet.



     
  6. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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    The stuff I read was more recent than that article and said that Sony hasn't issued any new guidelines, just started to enforce the old ones. The developers were caught off guard because they weren't used to actually abiding by the guidelines in the past.
     
  7. Bryan^H

    Bryan^H Producer

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  8. Bryan^H

    Bryan^H Producer

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    Boy oh boy. I CANNOT WAIT until Cyberpunk 2077 hits shelves. Then, and only then will we see either Sony's true hypocrisy by ignoring their policy in favor of BIG sales numbers, or they enforce their policy and have a "cut" version leaving PS4 owners furious!

    Sony's short sighted policy will hinder them on a large scale sooner or later. and there will be laughter when it happens.
     
  9. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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    Well, so long as Cyberpunk 2077 doesn't have the player taking upskirt panty photos of teenage girls or simulating rubbing oil all over naked anime girls, then I think CD Projekt Red and Sony will be fine.
     
  10. Jeff Cooper

    Jeff Cooper Cinematographer

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  11. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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    For what it's worth, that link points out that the PS4 version of the game is $18 cheaper. Whether that's because Switch game carts cost more to manufacture or because they figure the lower price could offset the cut content and appeal to consumers, who knows.
     
  12. Edwin-S

    Edwin-S Lead Actor
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    Cutting content to supposedly protect me from myself is going to have consequences. It is going to make me think long and hard on whether to spend money on a PS5. I don't need SONY to be my Mother or my Father. I can make my own decisions on what I think is appropriate for me to see or play.
     
    Jeff Cooper likes this.
  13. Bryan^H

    Bryan^H Producer

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  14. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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    I'll be honest: I think if we're entering the age of companies taking a little more control over the content of their internet-connected ecosystems, then that is a GOOD thing. I hope this doesn't count as too political of a point, but the rampant toxicity that allowed things like white supremacy and anti-semitism and anti-vaxxers to become issues that we actually have to deal with in 2019 comes from a similar source as misogyny and the treatment of underrepresented groups in media. I say kudos to Sony for having a policy and actually adhering to it, even if the exact way they began adhering to it was sloppy.

    There will be errors, there will be mistakes, and they can be fixed. I am highly skeptical of random internet geek sites (I don't use the term "geek" as an insult) posting specific anecdotes about what one gamer is running into and pretending that this is representative of what the other 90 million PSN accounts will encounter. But overall, I think the trend of games trying to represent both a diverse set of ideas (which, yes, does include the weird underage anime girl stuff) as well as content that Sony wouldn't be embarrassed to have on their platforms is good.
     
  15. Message #75 of 106 May 21, 2019
    Last edited: May 21, 2019
    Bryan^H

    Bryan^H Producer

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    Weird to me that this, available to buy readily at any time on the PS4 gets a free pass which looks like underage girls topless engaging in depraved debauchery, yet anime girls that are goofy looking, and cartoonish are impossible to gauge their ages--as they are dumb looking cartoons--- with no nudity in bikinis (AKA Cheesecake) are banned. Like I said from the start it is the hypocrisy, or double standard that bugs me the most. If Sony had a definite rule set that their censored content followed it would be easier to swallow, although not by much.
     
  16. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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    Bryan - ok, let's examine that scene from God of War III.

    -Are you saying that kind of content is inappropriate and should never have been in a game at all?
    -Is that an interactive moment where you can control your character doing things to those women? Or is it a cutscene?
    -Are those women actually, explicitly stated as being underage? Or are you inferring that?
    -Is the scene played out as a serious moment in a serious game or as a sexually-stimulating moment in a sex-centric game? Or is it a mix?

    Keep in mind that the specific kind of content that Sony is having a problem with in games right now is really quite minor. They aren't wholesale rejecting DoA Xtreme Beach Volleyball, they're just rejecting like 2 items in the added side mode. You can still watch girls play volleyball in sexy bikinis that show a ton of skin, but they don't want streamers to be sharing live videos of players using the joysticks to rub oil on the girl's boobs. The other games that have questionable content deal with young characters and Sony not wanting to encourage the sexualization of children, which is not exactly a bad policy, and doesn't apply to something like God of War.

    I feel like the reaction in the gaming community has been a bit overblown. Sony is unhappy with like 0.001% of the content in like maybe a dozen anime girl games from Japan, and people are acting like Sony is completely cancelling hundreds of projects. The reality is that they're not doing much, even though I do understand that people are upset they're doing anything at all.

    (For what it's worth, as a big fan of the God of War games...I think the topless scene shown and the sex stuff didn't exactly make the first few games better. You can argue the appropriateness for the story and the content being reflected in the rating, but the latest God of War had none of that and was probably the pinnacle of the franchise.)
     
  17. Edwin-S

    Edwin-S Lead Actor
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    Sony's policy is insane. It is okay to have a female character get her head crushed in Mortal Kombat, with blood and brains flying everywhere, but a side game of rubbing oil on an anime girl is a no-no.

    That is what is pathetic about censorship; the arbitrary nature of it. Rubbing a cartoon girl's body bad. Punching her head off her shoulders is a-okay. It is sick because it sends the message that beating her is fine while doing anything the slightest bit sensual is sexual abuse.
     
  18. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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    Edwin - their policy is about sexual content, not violence. I also think you focusing on the female characters getting hurt in MK instead of the male characters, which make up most of the roster, is obfuscating the issue. In those anime games, there are ZERO male characters being treated as sexual objects. I'm not trying to suggest that the sex games should be more equal opportunity, but rather highlighting the fact that their focus solely on female characters means they're in a completely different world than stuff like MK.

    Mortal Kombat treats women and men the same, as people that give and receive extreme violence. The games Sony has issues with are treating women exclusively as sexual objects. Specifically, they're treating UNDERAGE GIRLS as sexual objects.
     
  19. Jeff Cooper

    Jeff Cooper Cinematographer

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    Oh really? Exactly how old are the anime girls in those games?
     
  20. Edwin-S

    Edwin-S Lead Actor
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    I am comparing one act committed to a female character to another act committed to a female character. A policy that says it is okay to host a game that has violence against women in it while demanding cuts to a game over something as sexually mild as putting suntan oil on a woman's body just shows how stupid and arbitrary SONY's censorship is. And it is debatable as to whether applying oil to a body could be construed as sexual. IRL, plenty of women have suntan oil applied by their husbands and boyfriends without it being considered a sexual act. Rubbing or touching a woman's body only becomes an issue if she objects to the act or demands the person stop and the act continues.

    Bringing up that MK has more violence committed toward men than women is a deflection and completely irrelevant. The fact is the game contains violence against women which is apparently fine with SONY while SONY declares that merely touching a female in a mildly sexual way is tantamount to a pornographic sex act that requires immediate excision. It is sick.
     
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