A battle between gamers and Jack Thompson, a lawyer who has spent years combatting the sale of adult entertainment to minors, boiled over in the last few days as a result of a mod that was developed for the game "Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas."
The group of GTA modders, called the Fighting Hellfish, apparently met Thompson's challenge to create a video game based on a story line he devised in which a young man is killed by a 14-year-old gamer. Thompson reportedly offered to donate $10,000 to charity if the game were designed. But now Thompson appears to be backing down from his challenge, saying the original proposal was a satire and that gamers simply didn't get the joke.
Now those behind gaming site Penny Arcade have stepped up and donated the promised sum to the Entertainment Software Foundation, a group that supports numerous children's funds and programs. After Thompson's contact information was subsequently posted online in a few online forums, many in the gaming community have taken it upon themselves to contact him personally, demonstrating just how dangerous it can be taking on such a hot-button issue in the age of easily dispersed information.
Slashdot has a collection of key links that round out the story.
Blog community response:
"Thompson now claims that his repellent suggestion was "satire," and we must conclude that his financial offer was also satire, some new breed of satire apparently that I'm sure is just hilarious to people in need."
"It seems he probably originally did mean it to be satire... He was thinking "Do this outrageous thing that you won't do, and I'll donate $10,000". It turns out it's not that outrageous, and it was easily done. He thinks it's outrageous, because the theme is killing people that are supposed to be "on our side", but he doesn't realize that it's just a game, and games can go beyond the realm of what is acceptable in "real life" and still they themselves be acceptable."
--Enigma Man on Slashdot
"Jack Thompson, You bring politics back to life."