I don't think Garnett and Jeff are giving the audience enough credit when they say "The audience doesn't want journalism". Completely disagree.
It's like saying people only want to read fluff entertainment pieces instead of hard news. It just simply isn't true. There are people who want to know how the industry works, especially those who want to work in it.
Saying that no one wanted an investigation into the 38 Studios debacle, for example, just isn't correct.
I'm disappointed that you guys (and pretty much every journalist in the industry this week) all immediately brush off any notion that people that write about games are too cozy with PR people as "bullcocky" or "conspiracy theory". As soon as it's mentioned, you circle the wagons and form a defense line. A lot of people see a problem with *that*, and rightly so I think.
As for "I wish people cared this much about shit that really mattered".
I think people's perception of how you do your job *does* matter. If you *appear* to be bought off, whether you are or not, how is that going to affect your career and reputation?
To be fair, Jeff C has a point about being more concerned about things like the election.
Garnett has a point that Jeff K is more of a presenter now, which is true, but the site *currently* issues reviews. If Gametrailers was simply trailers and Jeff's video pieces, I don't think people would make *as* big a deal, although I think people would still question how the game is covered on their site.
Andrea - Personal relationships with PR is the norm in a lot of industries. Getting free swag and free games is not.
I cannot seriously believe Garnett is trying to compare advance press coverage with getting free PS3s. If you're not I'm sorry, but that's the way it came across.
Garnett - I guarantee that no one thinks it's suspicious if someone goes to E3, tries a demo and gives it a favourable impression. However, if you go on a trip paid for by the company and then write a favourable impression, that's going to make people sit back and think "Hmmmm".....
It's all about how it's presented. Come on, I would think that's obvious to everyone.
As for what people want, they want coverage that comes across as objective, and I think that applies to people who read all kinds of journalism - except Fox News watchers maybe.
I will say that I actually think WC/Shack has solved part of the problem by having sponsors that are only peripherally related, which helps a lot.
Most people were mostly making fun of Jeff K for what happened. What happened right after that (and what you didn't talk about) is what people are upset about.
Robert Florence wrote a piece on Eurogamer including the name of one person, Lauren Wainwright. . That person's parent company *allegedly* threatened to sue Eurogamer, because of the libel laws in the UK. Eurogamer then turned around and edited the article and removed the "offending" part of the article. Now Florence is out of a job, but it's not been specified whether he left or was fired.
Wainwright tweeted a promo thingie for a chance at a free PS3, the tweet was something enthusing Tomb Raider. Turns out she's a freelancer for Square Enix, so there's a definite conflict of interest. Now it looks like she used her parent company to force Florence to retract his pointing out her conflict of interest and got him fired.
THIS is why people are so furious, because this is a prime example of what you guys are talking about. There's no opinion here and no trust based on her actions, because whether she is or not, now she looks like a shill for Squeenix.
This was the important part of the story and you guys didn't even touch on it. Totillo is on Neogaf right now saying "it's a non-story".
Once again, the wagons are circled, the defenses are raised. "Nope, there's no problem in games writing" (since you don't want to call it journalism).
This is important because people in all walks of life should be accountable for how they do their job and games writers seem to think they are above it. I can't say I'm particularly surprised that you guys didn't cover the important part of this story, but I am damn disappointed in you for not doing it. This is the kind of games journalism I think that people would like to see.