It's become very common for gamers to protest against shitty actions taken by gaming companies. And that's undoubtedly a good thing. But it's a bit counterintuitive that a lot of these people are the first to agree with anti-left, pro-free market ideas. Because when you really think about it, the gaming industry is perfect example of how destructive unregulated capitalism can be and how far these millionaires (and billionaires) will go to get more and more money, and it seems a bit naive to think that these issues occur only in the gaming industry, and that unregulated capitalism would work just fine outside of it. So let me try and expose some parallels:
- Devaluation of the workforce in favour of CEOs and executives: The most emblematic case of this was Activision-Blizzard laying off 800 employees after making a record 7.5 billion dollars in 2018 (that's more than the GDP of several countries, and 7% up from 2017), while its CEO Bobby Kotick made 26.8 million dollars in the same year, 306 times more than the average Activision-Blizzard employee. When the capitalist system lacks regulation, CEOs will always get abnormally huge paychecks while treating the workforce as commodities that can be easily laid off and replaced. It's rare that you know the names of the people behind the most popular games, for example. Do you know who was the director of the last CoD? Maybe the last FIFA? Anthem? Wolfenstein II? Far Cry 5? You most likely don't. Because if you do, you'd feel bad when they're dismissed.
- Tax evasion: Rockstar North has paid a total of ZERO pounds in corporate tax in the last 10 years, but claimed 42 million pounds in tax relief. Taxes are supposed to be used for the good of the people. Don't you feel bad paying your taxes while these companies with more money than you'll ever see are literally stealing from you? Big corporations will always try to avoid paying taxes, and that has become quite a standard in most industries. Because they only want more money, doesn't matter if a few people will end up not having food or hospitals or education because of that.
- Predatory microtransactions and electronic gambling: Corporations will do everything in their power to get all the money. Doesn't matter if they're exploiting people with addictive tendencies to spend the little money they might have, as long as they're getting that money. Doesn't matter if kids are being bullied into spending money. Doesn't matter if they're ruining the game for people who don't spend. They don't care about anything other than more and more money inside their pockets. In an unregulated capitalist environment, powerful people are happy to exploit the lower classes so they can get even richer, and only want the lower classes to have enough money to give them, but not enough money to actually change anything.
- Nothing is political (unless we can make money from it): AAA companies will always try to avoid picking any sides or doing anything that might divide their audience (unless it can make them even more mountains of money). That's why David Cage said that Detroit: Become Human was "mostly about androids", or why Ubisoft insisted that The Division 2 was "not making any political statements". They know that, if they say they're being political in any way, they'll get a massive backlash from the community and will probably lose money. Big corporations will never do anything because they believe in it, because they only believe in money. Nike didn't side with Colin Kaepernick because they thought it was the right thing to do. They did that because they thought they could get even richer (and they did!). Pride Month has become a big capitalist exploitation party, too.
I think these are a few of the important topics that I noticed where the gaming industry exemplified what unregulated capitalism is like. If you can remember any more examples, I'd appreciate if you can help me expand this list, too. I know most of you are against at least half of those things, so if you're a super anti-left, pro-free market person, please explain to me your train of thought.Last edited by LuccaCardoso1 - on 04 October 2019