|Posted on May 22, 2013 at 6:30 PM|
It's interesting, since the Microsoft XboX One11! conference, there's been more and more information coming out. From required online connections to the whole used game fiasco getting a little more detailed. However, in my last blog (right before this one) I gave a little jab at the gaming press on the fact there were "whoos!" and people hollering their excitement instead of simply clapping. Applause is fine, especially at a whiz-bang media event like this one with flashy lights and awesome hair, but cheering and "yeah!"s is borderline unethical. As a journalism graduate, I simply find it kind of fun to pick on them at times. Yes, I know it gets old. Call it a guilty pleasure, like eating at Shakeys all you can eat buffet.
Well, funny story. As it turns out, it wasn't the gaming press at all. I suppose I'll have to find some other thing to bitch about regarding them (my dart board is ready).
Apparently, Microsoft had people set up around the tent to incite clapping, and some also gave out "whoos" which explains the weird "whoos" that came and went throughout the whole thing.
Thanks to Neogaf user Into for the heads up and the users for the pics.
It's kind of funny that the two guys I said weren't cheering at all are pointing this out. I never doubt these two, they're good at their jobs and are great representatives of what "gaming press" needs to be. Not "gaming enthusiast press" which most are. They've always been pros, walking a solid line between being a gaming fan, but also doing your job and doing it well and not getting wrapped up in hype or BS. Good on 'em.
Though this doesn't change the fact that the gaming press still needs to come a long way, it does refocus the direction of my complaint. Sure, it wasn't the press, but as I said "Who invited the high-schoolers?" Gaming press has had a bad track record on professionalism, it's easy to make such a mistake because, as noted in the program, only press were supposed to be attending the event.
Turns out Microsoft invited those "high-schoolers," and probably did it for just that type of reaction. As though things couldn't get worse for their public relations at this point, now it's come out that all the cheering were Microsoft employees at the back of the room and around the edges of the tent. Were they hired to get vocal reactions? Or were they just employees at the event that were excited? It was on the MS Campus, afterall, but if that's the case then why were they there in the first place at a press event? Either way one things if for certain: it wasn't the press, because there was nothing to get excited for press-wise, and it wasn't gamers because there was nothing there to get gamers excited to the point of cheering. Whether there intentionally or they just straggled in, it at least explains the cheers that erupted over Internet Explorer.
Now this tactic, intentional or not (probably intentional considering it was supposed to be closed) isn't new, and maybe if it were a decent press conference nobody would have thought twice on it, but it wasn't. It was bad, and when things are bad, people start digging to find out just how bad it really is and making it worse along the way. Regular "bloggers" and people "planted" in an event are there for a reason and it's not to report anything. They're there to convey excitement. But with the disaster this Xbox One thing seems to be going through right now (and hey, they could still turn it around), it's just adding fuel to a fire that Microsoft built and arguably risking burning their whole brand down along with it.