Today On Sunrise: Seamus And Jim Wallace Of The ACL Discuss Oslo And Modern Warfare 2

Earlier this morning Kotaku's very own Seamus Byrne discussed Modern Warfare 2 and the Oslo attacks with Jim Wallace from the ACL. Just in case you missed it, we thought we'd post the video here.

Let us know what you think in the comments below.


Comments

    I can't watch the video at college, anyone care to summarise?

    Or does "ACL makes unbased, self-righteous arguments; Seamus doesn't get a word in" pretty much sum it up?

      Seamus makes opening statement stating how ridiculous the claim is and how the terrorist's actions were clearly motivated by many other things including his fundamental Christianity and far right views. Jim Wallace dismisses it as a cheap attempt to distract from the serious issues, goes on to make a cheap attempt to distract from the serious issues, gets far more air time.

        So basically how we all expected it to play out.

        Being given more talk time didn't exactly help him when all he manage to do was contradict himself and shout out 'YOU PEOPLE' and 'YOU CANT PROVE I'M WRONG'. I think he did more to prove Saemus' point than Saemus himself was able to.

      Pretty much.

      Seamus: Brief intro.
      Wallace: Lengthy intro and rebuttal.
      Mel: Closed it all down and Seamus is left hanging with the ACL left looking like the goodguys instead of the extremists they are.

      The guy responsible for the attack says he used Modern Warfare 2 as a training simulation for his attack. The ACL takes this as meaning the violent game was responsible for influencing the guy to make the attacks, and cites the same completely invalidated study as they always do trying to make out that the violence in the games "pushed him over the edge".

      There is absolutely no indication in the statement that this was the context the game was being used in. I think most gamers know how the mission-builders in these games can be used to construct life-like representations of buildings if you know the layout. Take forge in halo, you can construct just about any scenario in that you wanted. That doesn't mean the game itself is responsible, that just means an already disturbed individual is using the game in a way it's not intended.

      I also find it reprehensible that after Jim was given the opportunity to make such a scathing retort to Seamus (which didn't actually address any of the issues he brought up you might notice) Seamus was not given due opportunity to rebut the comments made. Instead Jim was given free reign to make a self-righteous remark about the accusations, spout a load of nonsense about the scientific peer-review process which he clearly does not understand, and that was it.

      "no one who believes in the fundamentals of the christianity, could possibly do this."

      Didn't christian people start dozens of wars and slaughter, burn, rape and pillage millions of people and towns?

      Yeah they did, all in the name of their fancy "God"

      Mr Jim Wallace, you sir are a moron, these leading 112 academics probably mentioned its about an EXTREMELY rare thing, the port arthur massacre was not caused by video games

      Nor was Charles manson "inspired or trained" by video games, or Jack the ripper, or countless other psychopathic serial killers. You MAY, have a tiny shred of evidence that 1 in 10,000 people who plays games is a nut, but they all watch TV, and eat junk food, and do hundreds of every other things in daily life.

      Point is, its quite likely multiple things in their daily life attribute to this, also they're freaking disturbed...... Dumbass!

      several more things. How many Academics disagree with the 112?

      What kind of life did this guy have growing up? he was 32 or so, i believe. A lot could have happened and gone wrong throughout his life.

      I'm a 23 year old Atheist whos played violent games for 10 years, yet surprise surprise, i've never tried to kill anyone....

        I must agree with “yngtommy” due to me playing Perfect World International. PWI has the exact same strategies as in any other violent type of game. Some might use it to train for something they are already contemplating and in some cases is does provoke you to anger when these “HIGH LEVEL” characters “PK(Player Killer)” you while you are doing a quest. This happens over and over, then you feel SO helpless and normally get fed up with it and try to fight back in the game. This has a very violent subconscious and conscious effect on one’s psyche. PWI also has “Magical” characters in it and it does not teach me anything about magic, but it does teach me to use magical spells etc on my enemies when I’m in PK mode. On the PVP(Player Verses Player) servers it’s even more so. Our society is already so Brainwashed with violence that we no longer have any sort of consciousnesses of the WRONG in the violence. It becomes part of life. Today’s games are build with much more realism and the effects, power, skills etc which you achieve in-game makes one feel sort of “invicible” and it makes you feel superior to your opponents. It has NOTHING to do with “Christianity”. I’m a fully believing “Christian” and I know that even I get SO angry with these “enemies/opponents” that I even want to PK them back. If it was in REAL LIFE, I know I would knock a few of my opponents over the head with a GIANT hammer or something ! So I guess people who play these games should much rather REMEMBER that it is only a game and should treat it only that way ! LOL

    Not much of a debate. 2 opinions were provided, no opportunity to rebut.

    If the Oslo shooter actually did say what the ACL rep states, then this will just make this discussion worse. It's a strong statement for their argument.

      God that pisses me off because your average Joe watching this program sees the issue as split 50/50 between these two opinions when in reality it is nothing of the like.

        Care of reddit but this report on the BBC seems relavant
        http://www.bbc.co.uk/bbctrust/assets/files/pdf/our_work/science_impartiality/science_impartiality.pdf

        "Undue attention to a marginal opinion"

        That's the problem with the way these things are reported.

      He did say this. But in context it means "I really only played MW2 for training." Not "The most important thing I used to train for my attacks was MW2."

      Do we see the difference? He was comparing MW2 to videogames he actually likes, which were fantasy RPGs.

        What's more, it was my understanding that the training was for tactical moves in the multiplayer, nothing to do with the notorious "airport scene" that Jim fixated upon. I have not read the manifesto myself so I can't confirm this personally.

        Seriously though, Infinity Ward did us all a disservice by including that stupid scene in their game.

          Infinity Ward have nothing to apologise for.

          That scene was relevant to the story of the game, and DID NOT glorify terrorism.

            the pastor at my school pre-ordered MW2.... even the Christians play it.. im a christian and i love the game... and in no way have changed my entire world view of life. i don't want to kill my class mates. nor my teachers or anyone alike... this guy was just messed up and just used the game as a tool. if he were not able to use this as a tool he would have found ome other way of 'training' enen if its hitting flies with darts.. this guy is just disturbed.

              I must agree with "yngtommy" due to me playing Perfect World International. PWI has the exact same strategies as in any other violent type of game. Some might use it to train for something they are already contemplating and in some cases is does provoke you to anger when these "HIGH LEVEL" characters "PK(Player Killer)" you while you are doing a quest. This happens over and over, then you feel SO helpless and normally get fed up with it and try to fight back in the game. This has a very violent subconscious and conscious effect on one's psyche. PWI also has "Magical" characters in it and it does not teach me anything about magic, but it does teach me to use magical spells etc on my enemies when I'm in PK mode. On the PVP(Player Verses Player) servers it's even more so. Our society is already so Brainwashed with violence that we no longer have any sort of consciousnesses of the WRONG in the violence. It becomes part of life. Today's games are build with much more realism and the effects, power, skills etc which you achieve in-game makes one feel sort of "invicible" and it makes you feel superior to your opponents. It has NOTHING to do with "Christianity". I'm a fully believing "Christian" and I know that even I get SO angry with these "enemies/opponents" that I even want to PK them back. If it was in REAL LIFE, I know I would knock a few of my opponents over the head with a GIANT hammer or something ! So I guess people who play these games should much rather REMEMBER that it is only a game and should treat it only that way ! LOL

            That 'scene' was merely a cheap plot device created purely as a publicity stunt. It's barely relevant to the game and wholly offensive to the intelligence of anyone playing

      Whilst the guy did say something to that effect, I think the guy exaggerates by adding a "most important" to the quote. There are about 500 words on gaming in a 1500 page manifesto. Most of it refers to the Christian principles and bible passages that justify this act of terrorism (why is Osama a terrorist when this equally coherent Christian-Political ideologue gets labeled a madman). I find it ironic the ACL is trying to bring this into the debate, because it makes a far better case for banning the religious from politics.

    Translation:

    Seamus: Here are some logical points.

    Jim: Here is some zealous hate speak.

    Reporter: I didn't even understand how to pronounce Kotaku, let alone what we are arguing about.

      'Ko-tack-u'

        I do not mean to be rude, but it's Koh-tah-ku. Similar to the Japanese word Otaku.

          Ko-ta-stupidaclwanker.

          !!!

          Oh, whoops! Sorry!

    Thanks! Will watch it when I get ahold of some headphones.

    Nice work Seamus. How does it feel to be a nameless "These people"?

      I know. What was that all about. Seriously.

        Jim Wallace, keepin it classy!

        http://thewhitebull.files.wordpress.com/2010/04/jesuslovesyou.jpg

        bit disturbing, really. the extremist painting "those people" as extremists (that was the point, right?).

        Discussionst start with "these people" never end pleasantly.

        Yeah that was very childish really. Seamus was polite enough to mention the ACL and Wallace by name. Wallace just kept referring to Seamus as "these people" as if all gamers are now terrorists. I like how Wallace just shrugged off the comment from Seamus that 'if games are to be questioned in the manifesto, than so should Christianity', by just saying that 'real christians who believe in the fundamentals of Christianity wouldn't do this' (the terrorist act). Well then doesn't that same rationale apply to gamers? Real gamers who believe in playing games for enjoyment, wouldn't murder 90+ innocent people?

        Also, Ku-tack-u??? lol, way to do your homework Mel/Sunrise...

    I've sent Sunrise and email telling them exactly what I think of them giving Jim Wallace a soapbox to try and exploit an act of terrorism in order to further their agenda.

    He calls Seamus's statement a cheap attempt to distract from the serious issues. That pretty much sums up the entire debacle.

    The raging hypocrite.

    As for his 112 academics, how come they haven't been cited in the past?

      Most likely because they do not want us finding out that there are only 112 papers and nearly all of have Graig Anderson on them.

        I imagine that they're a little like Michelle Bachman's Noble laureates that support creationism. Completely fictitious.

    So wait... If this guy played mass effect 2 - does that mean he learnt how to build a fully working normandy in his backyard? If so i might head over there and steal it now...

    Must... Supress... Rage...
    What annoys me so much about his argument is that he expressly states just because a few people react badly to something, it needs to be banned. I'm sure if you compared violence comitted as a result of videogame influence to violence committed in the name of the bible, the result would sway pretty heavily in one direction.
    If we follow the ACL's logic, we would need to ban a whole range of things that certain individuals have adverse reactions to. This is not the answer.

      Great choice in name!

        Uh this seems to have gone to the wrong comment.

    What was the audience feedback rsults?

      Stopped by the sunrise website to check that out myself. Seems like a fair number supporting "these people" with a scattering of ban video game posts.

      Then again it is rather hard to tell as the sunrise site wants to keep the discussion to the same level as the video above. All posts are truncated about about 300 characters. About as useful as twitter for presenting a valid and concise argument/opinion

    Gotta say Seamus, that was a pretty shallow attempt at laying the blame back at the ACL in a way. I thought we as gamers were above the finger pointing on our side of the debate. I know you didn't have a lot of time but surely you could have come up with a getter argument than "Well, you Christians are at fault too!"

    Having said that, I'd really like to know who these 112 "experts" are that the ACL kept bringing up. We know there's countless studies that prove the opposite to what he was claiming, so I really want to know who these 112 are and what exactly they are saying.

      +1. He should have focused on evidence. Documented evidence.

      That said, it was never going to be a fair debate, so whatever.

      Seamus went out of his way to say he didn't blame Christians, but if the ACL was going to start blaming video games, it was important to note that fundamentalist Christian beliefs were far more influential on the bastard's motives than video games.

        +1 the Cracks.

        @Michael, the ACL guy didn't address the issue at all. Seamus's position was that the whole thing was the ranting of a mad man - you can't just pick one small component to push forward your own case. If you going to blame video games for this attack, you must also take issue with the stated underlying inspiration for the attack. They guy wrote a detailed 1500 page manifesto, referring repeatedly to bible passages which justify and inspired his Christian warfare. In what way was Seamus being cheap? In that he provided a full context for the video game quote? Is this cheap now.

        "It's not fair! I can't win the argument if your going to dismiss my arguments with facts!"

      His argument wasn't "you Christian's are at fault," his argument was that it was as stupid to try and blame what this man did on his Christianity as it is to blame it on the fact that he played video games, and he mentioned the fact that the manifesto has thousands of references top Christianity, compared to dozens about games.

        Yes, I understand what he said and agree with what he said. But the fine nuances of an argument are lost in morning television, and much better left to paper submissions.

        Instead of doing anything that could even halfway be considered an attack, I think he should have focused his limited screen time on the (many) facts that really haven't been finding their way to the masses.

          Given what he was there to discuss, I think the point Seamus makes remains the most logical facts to work from.

        The most annoying part of that whole piece was that the excerpts Jim used from the manifesto were used completely out of context. Also what Seamus said was entirely correct. The killer wrote a 112000 word document and the main headline to come out of it was 16 words about a video game not the thousands of words about how the bible and other christian scriptures influenced his actual feelings about the attack.

        That's right people, he cited MW2 as "training" and that gets the media attention but he also cites religion as "Inspiration" and no one goes anywhere near it. Then the media sides with the ACL when Jim Wallace come out and blatantly attacks "there people" (the games industry) about the fact that 16 words out of 112000 were cited as the reason behind that attack.

        I don't know whether this is just me but i seriously beeive that this has outlined a major flaw in not only australian media but also the world media. That they are willing to go after anything, no matter how outlandish the claim, just to avoid pissing off religious groups of any denomination. I am ashamed of channel 7.

    Seamus hardly got to say anything other than a brief intro whilst Jim Wallace was allowed to blather away as per usual. Way to go Sunrise, way... to... go.

      Would Seamus have had any airtime if Jim was up first tho?

    Hope this works on my phone when I finally get a chance to watch it

    Ugh, Jim actually said that Modern Warfare 2 is what caused Anders to "go over the edge" and go on his massacre.

    Absolute bullshit, he'd been planning it for years based on his political and religious ideals.

    I hope this whole issue gets swept under the rug again and we go back to focusing on the real issues in life, like Pastafarianism.

      Also Kotaku, stop going on Sunrise... if they don't even want to learn how to pronounce your site name before going on air they really just prove how far the entire team has their heads up Koshies ass.

        +1 stop going on Sunrise.

        They won't give Jimmy boy airtime if they can't find someone to legitimise his extremism.

        If you are going to go on I would insist that it is even airtime with each side is given a chance for rebuttal.
        you know... an actual debate and not a Jim Wallace soapbox.

        If you don't defend yourself they'll use that 'ol journalism chest nut "They declined to comment" -- which makes you look like you've got something to hide. :D

    Pretty poor, with only one question being asked and no follow-ups or responses given. Seems like the ACL guy got a lot more air time to bash gaming.

    I think they should have let the CL guy go first. They aways seem to get the last say in this stuff.

    And Sunrise SHOULD NOT have showed any game footige while eather of them where talking. It was distracting from what was beinging said. I think you should ask if you could go on again, by your self, to talk about this stuff on a regular bases. Soemone needs to start talking to the people as people.

    That was not an interview, that was a dilibrit bashing from the ACL. You see it over in the US as well when they have skeptics for things, and they get the skeptic to talk, and then they just bash him verbaly in to the dirt. thats what happend here.

      not to mention they overlayed it with some eminem to make it seem like its those darned kids and there darned music.

      I have a feeling that the ACL provided the ingame footage that wasn't seamus playing

    no longer available...is that just me or...?

      Try a different browser. Didn't work in Firefox (probably due to plugins) but did in IE.

    That was neither a discussion nor a debate nor was it journalism. Sunrise as a news source has about as much credibility as the Herald Sun online reader comments section. Seamus did as well as possible within the very limited framework of whatever you want to call that media mess.

    Seamus did well but we all know the ACL would bring up "studies" and "experts" that "confirm" the link between violent videogames and violent behaviour. He should've beaten them to the punch with research and studies that say otherwise.

      Or refer to the government report on all the studies.

    If violence in games is enough to push one man over the limit then I see the ACL's point, however the fact that he denies the influence of religious fundamentalism in these attacks renders everything he says moot.
    You can't blame a single facet of the man's identity as a sole contributor to this outcome. Every stimulus and interaction the man ever had led him to do what he did - not just gaming.

    @ Jim Wallace: So, the hunting and Norway's military conscription were less useful as 'training' than a game? So, as a gamer, I'm more lethal than Wallace, a trained SAS soldier? What a crock.

    It's funny how Seamus (kudos to him if I may do so) calmly pointed out all the factors and how the likes of ACL are not giving attention to the gunman's religious belief yet when his turn came Wallace started out attacking Seamus - calling his claim a cheap shot.

    It's almost ironic and childish considering that the ACL are the ones making the first cheap shot by using the Oslo massacre as a "reason" to not go ahead with the R18+ rating.

    Mr. Wallace, they have tried this before with the likes of the Columbine and high school gunman Michael Carneal. In both cases it was claimed that games were used for training and in both cases the claims were proven false. The Oslo massacre is no different.

    Oh the old "No true Scotsman" argument. "He can't be a Christian for doing this" when the only thing that you need to be to be a Christian is a belief in the Judaic god and Jesus Christ his son.

    He claims you can't judge all Christians for this, but you *can* judge all gamers for this. Yeah pull the other one, I hope your party loses more seats in the next election.

      No, you will have to get get rid of the Bible, Torah and the Koran. They are the thing that incite all this violence.
      BS. The guy is nuts; probably always was!

    Jim, Sir, Your a fn moron! Its just getting damn ridiculous nowadays with all this nonsense. I'm sick of all the qqing, and crying all these minority partys do nowadays, be it against gaming or otherwise. Its damn frustrating and I wish it would stop.

    I won't continue on about it, because I'm sure I'll start to rant. But besides that, good work Seamus, I liked how you straight away jumped to the point of him being a christian fundamentalist. Its true, Jim, so it's not a cheap attempt, you damn idiot.

    No reply allowed to Jim Wallace?

    I still maintain that religion kills more people per year than video games. I Don't care what religion, it just does. I don't see katamari causing people to go out and role up entire continents. but i do see most religions having their extremists.

      Hey, that's not friggin' funny. I let me cat out one morning and before I knew it, he was sucked up into a katamari ball along with my neighbours car and a highway overpass.

      Granted, my cat loved it, like everyone who gets rolled up, but it was nerve wrecking for me.

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