1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Two Factor Authentication is now available on BeyondUnreal Forums. To configure it, visit your Profile and look for the "Two Step Verification" option on the left side. We can send codes via email (may be slower) or you can set up any TOTP Authenticator app on your phone (Authy, Google Authenticator, etc) to deliver codes. It is highly recommended that you configure this to keep your account safe.

America's Army Under Fire From Antiwar Group

Discussion in 'News & Articles' started by hal, Aug 6, 2008.

  1. hal

    hal Dictator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 1998
    Messages:
    21,405
    Likes Received:
    18
    The free Unreal Engine based game America's Army, designed by the U.S. Army to interest young Americans in the armed services, is now under fire from Direct Action to Stop the War (DASW). The complaint centers around the "T for Teen" rating given the game, which the group argues violates The United Nations Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict, restricting recruitment of those under the age of eighteen.

    The group was holding a rally today in San Francisco in front of the Ubisoft offices. Demands include a label on the product that reads:

    And here they are...



     
  2. Unregistered

    Unregistered Guest

    They don't accuse them of affecting teenagers, but they actually accuse them of recruiting them? They're going about this in a very, very stupid way... I don't think the army have recruited any 16 year olds, as much as some of them may want to join...

    Also, how can they demand for a label that basically says the product is illegal (for, once again, absurd reasons)? if it really is illegal, they should demand it is withdrawn. What gives?

    As for the Combat Service warnings, what the heck... That's worse than the Wii's health care screens you have to endure every time you want to play...

    They're going about this in so wrong ways it's hilariously humiliating their little club imho. Much like their choice of name and how they don't live up to it by worrying about unrelated activities.
     
  3. Hedge-o-Matic

    Hedge-o-Matic New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2000
    Messages:
    204
    Likes Received:
    0
    I'd agree with this. America's Army is an obvious propaganda tool for the US Armed Forces. That the message is also illegal under international law, however, isn't something the current US government gives a half crap about, and I guess Epic has no qualms about it either.

    Personally, I would have a hard time sleeping at night if I had reason to believe my product had been used to dupe even one person into fighting a war they wouldn't have otherwise participated in. But I'm sure that a new sports car every year would make it easier to handle. The US Army can certainly dish out the cash, and as a PsyOps mission on the US public, licensing a game engine and developing a "game" using prepackaged tech is cheaper than dirt. Presto: instant reinforcement of the message that actual combat is exciting, and urban warfare is an adventure.

    Public targeting of military PsyOps is also illegal, but hey, I reference my own first paragraph.
     
  4. Sirius

    Sirius Meh

    Joined:
    May 19, 2005
    Messages:
    1,002
    Likes Received:
    0
    Ah-Hahaha!
    No sh*t! Really?
     
  5. Brits_Hit

    Brits_Hit Flak Monkey

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2003
    Messages:
    230
    Likes Received:
    0
    Well said

    I think it's in poor taste that the Army has made a game specifically to rally new troops under their command. War is not a game, and should not be glorified as one when attached to a recruiting tool.
    CoD4 is a game glorifying war, yes, but it's not saying "Hey, look how exciting and fun the Army can be! Come join us!".
     
  6. Prophetus

    Prophetus Old Fart

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 1999
    Messages:
    3,099
    Likes Received:
    7
    Puhlease...you two are so far off base. AA isn't duping people into believing war is exciting no more than Grand Theft Auto is making car jacking and murder look cool. Of course, people are more inclined to defend games like Postal and GTA against ultra-conservative groups than defend AA from ultra-left wing nut jobs.

    But hey, we can all choose to not download AA and instead, play the Canadian Military recruitment game. Personally, I choose AA.
     
  7. Kantham

    Kantham Fool.

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2004
    Messages:
    18,034
    Likes Received:
    2
    Yeah well, there are really dumb people out there, things have to be said.
     
  8. BIOS

    BIOS New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2002
    Messages:
    62
    Likes Received:
    0
    have you PLAYED america's army? not the funnest game, to say the least...

    [edit] I agree with you, Prophetus, everyone has a choice to download AA or not, and even if they do it's not the funnest experience.
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2008
  9. Prophetus

    Prophetus Old Fart

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 1999
    Messages:
    3,099
    Likes Received:
    7
    Yes I have.
     
  10. Brits_Hit

    Brits_Hit Flak Monkey

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2003
    Messages:
    230
    Likes Received:
    0
    The difference is, AA markets itself as a recruitment tool, not just a video game.
    GTA doesn't come with a brochure that outlines stealing cars or banging prostitutes in real life.
     
  11. Twrecks

    Twrecks Spectacularly Lucky

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2000
    Messages:
    2,606
    Likes Received:
    1
    Patriotism and Religion aren't "products", quick some call my publisist! Go watch Starship Troopers 3 "Marauder", I found it too be a hilarious spoof.
     
  12. Prophetus

    Prophetus Old Fart

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 1999
    Messages:
    3,099
    Likes Received:
    7
    Dude, your argument is people are stupid enough to play a game like AA and join the Army simply because it is a recruitment tool. If so, then people who play GTA are stupid enough to steal cars and bang prostitutes.

    I'll concede AA is a type of advertisement to show off the "good" parts of joining the military, but you should be smart enough to concede that GTA is also advertising a lifestyle that appeals to more teenagers than AA. If that isn't true, then explain why the numbers of teens playing GTA is higher than AA? You can't say that AA is a recruitment tool and therefore "programs" teens into believing war is cool without accepting the fact that games like GTA can and does do the same thing, with or without the claim of "recruitment".

    BTW, I have nothing against GTA or AA. To me, AA like GTA isn't shoving anything down people's throats. AA has over nine million users, but the Army only recruited 31,000 people in fiscal year 2008. Of those 31,000 over 50% stated they joined for financial (needed a job) reasons. 30% joined for the free college and tuition assistance of over $30,000 after they complete a 2 or 4 year enlistment. 15% joined for "patriotic" reasons. 5% joined for travel. So a game with over 9 million users only obtaining a small amount of the 31,000 recruited is not that significant. But it is still cheaper than paying millions for a 20 second TV advertisement.

    For the record, AA isn't the only game out there. Australia has the Australian Defence Force ADF: Aviator. If the USA is violating "International Laws" of targeting under age teens, then Australia is grossly at fault. They allow 16 year olds to apply (http://www.defencejobs.gov.au/recruitmentCentre/under17/) with support for children over 10 years old to maintain a My HQ account to secure desired jobs in the military. And Canada allows 16 year old teens to apply as well (http://www.tamilcanadian.com/page.php?cat=466&id=3942). In the USA, you have to be 17 and have your parent's consent. So file a complaint to your country first about breaking international law.
     
  13. JaFO

    JaFO bugs are features too ...

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2000
    Messages:
    8,408
    Likes Received:
    0
    While it may or may not affect teens ... I really wonder how a game about killing people can get a T-rating.

    And while it would have been ok if it had been just a game and sold as such, AA clearly has never been sold as such. The entire site is filled with propaganda-material promoting the supposed 'values' of the american army.

    Anyone can see that it is meant to be a recruitment-tool for the American Army.

    As such it really is illegal by practical any law in the world.
    then again ... the USA has a long history of ignoring international law whenever it suits them.

    Besides ... what good is a game about killing people when there's no blood ?
    This thing needs the M-rating.
    Or is a game featuring a single hidden sex-scene really that much worse than a recruitment-tool for an organisation specializing in murder ?
     
  14. Prophetus

    Prophetus Old Fart

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 1999
    Messages:
    3,099
    Likes Received:
    7
    I agree with the "M" rating.

    JaF0 here is the actual article:

    http://www2.ohchr.org/english/law/crc-conflict.htm

    It basically states that no military will recruit people under the age of 18 into hostilities. The USA isn't violating anything in this article. Article 3 states:

    recruitment into their national armed forces under the age of 18 years shall maintain safeguards to ensure, as a minimum, that:

    (a) Such recruitment is genuinely voluntary;

    (b) Such recruitment is carried out with the informed consent of the person's parents or legal guardians;

    (c) Such persons are fully informed of the duties involved in such military service;

    (d) Such persons provide reliable proof of age prior to acceptance into national military service.

    The US Military (and I'm positive my Canadian and Australian brothers) doesn't recruit people under the age of 18 without meeting all those requirements listed above. 17 is the absolute minimum age of recruitment. If people still consider that a violation, then there are many other "civilized" nations violating these laws far worse than the US.
     
  15. SiN-BiN

    SiN-BiN New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2004
    Messages:
    608
    Likes Received:
    0
    I like Americas Army :p. Very fun game.

    Regardless of how I feel on the matter, I don't think these people are going to make any difference to the production of the game at all. As said, the has just looked the otherway in the past in the face of such things.
     
  16. Hedge-o-Matic

    Hedge-o-Matic New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2000
    Messages:
    204
    Likes Received:
    0
    Except that the military has been caught (on tape) multiple times lying and threatening kids who signed early enlistment forms and then tried to back out when they were eighteen to force them to join. "Games" like AA encourage kids of the 15-17 age range to more seriously consider the army's early enlistment program.

    Arguably, recruiting tools like AA circumvent this. Also, the military has intimidated and threatened parents who try to talk their kids out of enlistment, or following through with their early enlistment papers.

    This is entirely false. Military recruiters are effectively immune from prosecution for any misstatements or misrepresentations they make during the recruiting process. Many recruiters have been recorded saying the most egregious lies, and none face any serious consequence. Also, I've many friends in the military (or out of it), and every one has some story to tell about recruiters lies to them.

    "Reliable" is the key word here. The military is so strained right now that they often choose to look the other way when given plausible deniablity as to a recruit's age. Though "Moral Waivers" allowing the military to recruit violent felons and gang members are a more effective tool (and Iraq now has a blanket of gang graffiti to prove it), bureaucratic haze can let a questionable recruit be shipped off to front lines long before the paperwork gets thoroughly vetted.
     
  17. Leonardo

    Leonardo Old fart on top the mountain.....

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2006
    Messages:
    1,010
    Likes Received:
    0
    I'd buy that for a dollar! :lol:
     
  18. Six Ways

    Six Ways Third Contingent

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2006
    Messages:
    84
    Likes Received:
    0
    Generally speaking, I'm against the idea of AA. Essentially because it IS, no matter what people say, an attempt to dupe people into seeing the army as cool and exciting and subsequently join up. It may well be that it doesn't work very well, but they're only going to try and improve it.

    On the other hand, it's almost entirely up to you to not be a retard and believe that it portrays a realistic, or even remotely plausible picture of what life in the army is actually like. For instance, I've downloaded and played it (it's ok, not at all great) safe in the knowledge that at the end of the day it's just a game and there's no way in hell I'm joining any army, let alone the US army (regardless of the fact that I'm English....).

    So I think if you're already smart enough to not want to go get yourself killed fighting for extremely dubious reasons against whoever the finger's pointed at this month, you're smart enough to play the game and enjoy it, or not, for what it is. If you're not....then there's already a high chance you're gonna sign up.

    But that doesn't excuse the fact that it's an underhanded and fundamental deceiving recruitment tool - which puts it in exactly the same class as all other military recruitment. Hedge-o-matic makes some good points - the military basically takes whatever it can get.

    I see every reason for it to be an M rated game.

    Finally, for the GTA vs. AA argument - granted, not many people are convinced either way, but the important point is that AA is sold as a reliable source of information about the military, whereas GTA is sold as pure fantasy. The US Army is lying to you, Rockstar is not.

    EDIT: Twrecks, I think you're too quick to say that patriotism isn't a product. Obviously, it's not, but that doesn't mean it's not being sold as such. Same for religion in other contexts.

    Lemme guess - tl;dr? :p
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2008
  19. -=WolverinE=-

    -=WolverinE=- New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2006
    Messages:
    227
    Likes Received:
    0
    The military is always in the need of fresh meat, because wars are so damn well payed.

    Maybe something like this:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tGEz31RA4es
     
  20. Kantham

    Kantham Fool.

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2004
    Messages:
    18,034
    Likes Received:
    2
    Let's not forget falling off the tallest building in the city and get resurrected in front of some hospital.
     

Share This Page