Red Cross: 600m videogamers may be war criminals
Modern games flagrantly violate humanitarian law. Apparently.
Move aside, Milosevic. Out of the way, al-Bashir. It's the world's videogamers who should be hauled up on war crimes charges, some members of the Red Cross seem to think.
During the 31st International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent, which took place in Geneva last week, attendees were asked to consider what response the organisations should make to the untold zillions of deaths that can be laid at the feet of videogamers.
Delegates "discussed our role and responsibility to take action against violations of IHL in video games," reported the conference's Daily Bulletin.
Not a game for war criminals?
A Red Cross promo received by Vulture Central today
There is "an audience of approximately 600 million gamers who may be virtually violating international humanitarian law (IHL)," it noted.
The key word there, folks, is 'virtually'. Ruthlessly gunning down civilians, fellow combatants and/or extraterrestrial visitors may be a crime if you do it for real, but not if you merely imagine the action, even if helped by the realistic visuals of the likes of Battlefield 3 and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.
As an corollary, there's a small piece in The Economist this week which considers violence in videogames.
The article doesn't come to a specific conclusion, but it does contain a chart which reveals that while videogame playing has rocketed in the US since 1995, with sales growing from $3bn to a peak in 2008 of $22bn, violent crime has fallen, from just under seven incidents per 1000 members of the population to 4.5 in 2008. ®
Not the same
It's one thing to find that piece of enemy scum, place your crosshairs over them and blow their brains out in a game. It's quite another to do it in real life where one knows someone is actually going to get hurt/killed. And the kind of person who would willingly do it IRL is so far gone, I rather doubt the game has much influence.
Are they considering "Risk" a breach of human rights as well? Chess?
This is just a piece of PR grabbing straight from the PeTA game book and it is shameful for an institution such as the Red Cross to stoop so low.
> This is just a piece of PR grabbing straight from the PeTA game book and it is shameful for an institution such as the Red Cross to stoop so low.
They didn't, they just stuck a note on a conference agenda. This story is essentially just click bait bullshit from the Daily Mail and various other sensationalist crap spraying outfits.
The red cross are doing exactly what they are supposed to be doing at a red cross conference; debating issues that may have an impact on IHL and finding ways to promote awareness of this law.
Meanwhile, back in the real world
America still hasn't closed Guantanamo, the UK still locks unaccompanied immigrant children up indefinitely, Syria is a nightmare, Iraq is a nightmare and Afghanistan is a nightmare, but hey, lets go after game players hey?
Remind me what the Red Cross is for again...
You have just unlocked the achievement: "War Criminal"!
... I'll get me coat. It's the one covered in the (pixellated) blood of the innocent.
Don't forget the main evidence of war crimes...
War crimes are ALWAYS performed by the loser.
However, there is the good ol' motto : "War does not determine who is right, only who is left" :)