The Elitism Of Current Day Tech/Software/Gaming Companies


For a long time, Skyrim players dreamed of a Skyrim MMO game and pleaded with Bethesda to create one. Bethesda listened, and what Bethesda delivered was NOT a MMO Skyrim, but a MMO that had nothing to do with Skyrim.

Ipad users have pleaded with Apple to have a REAL file system. So Apple listened … and what Apple delivered was a FIles app that is NOT a real file system.

A lot of Gaming companies have been putting SJW politics into their games, and their sales have been going down. So, what do they do? … they make new games … with more SJW politics and tell their customers that they are the problem. Battlefield V is already being reported to be 50% in places. And The Witcher TV series has hired writers that brag about being Patriarchy Destroyers, and have “diversified” the cast at the dismay of many long time Witcher fans who see this as forcing identity politics down their throats and watering down the entire culture of the game … i mean, isn’t one of the main points of making a Witcher TV series is to at least cater to Witcher fans to make sure that they are guaraneed viewers … and THEN second, construct the TV series in a way that can also cater to the general public without pissing off the very people that should be guaranteed to watch it?

Ive tested a lot of Music streaming service apps … I find the UI in most to be totally horrible. In Spotify, it is not intuitive getting your music library to only show downloaded music. The offline switch, only makes music in your library that you have NOT downloaded … unplayable. You STILL see the non-downloaded music in your library.It makes no sense. If your offline, it’s unplayable by DEFAULT .. because .. your offline. duh. The secret is to go into filters and filter for downloaded only. I’m still not sure what the offline switch is for, i guess is your online but don’t want to play something that hasnt been downloaded? but really, do people really do that?

And I’ve downloaded generic localized music players too … A LOT … that literally will take my music file folder with music labeled 01,02,03 and RESTRUCTURE the order for no apparent reason and there is no way to sort by file name. And I mean, there are A LOT of top of the list music players that do this. Its unbelievable.

What is going on? Why are so many companies and app developers doing stupid crap? Why are so many insistent on telling us what we want, instead of listening to what we want .. and producing a product we want? Who are making these apps? Who are in charge of these decisions? Do they live is such a technological bubble world that they can’t produce common sense apps that do simple things the way most reasonable intelligent people in the real world would expect to do it?

When did this elitism seep in? Perhaps I’m old fashion, but I always thought businesses were designed to make money, yet I am seeing businesses not only choosing, but in some instances, bragging about making decisions that are financially hurting the company. It’s mind boggling to me. And to be fair, its our fault too, the consumer. I think these tech giants know we are going to end up buying their product anyway. In some instances, its a choice of bad or worse, like in Ios Vs Android, where I either choose Apple telling me how I’m supposed to use their phone or Android letting me do what I want at the cost of stability and privacy.

Perhaps I’m getting older and grumpier, but I think we are in some troubling times. I remember when I used to play around as a kid on my IBM PCjr on Norton and look at the sectors of my floppy disk and change the screen output after it was loaded to say something different on the screen by searching the sectors on the drive for the appropriate machine code output and changing it . It took me forever to figure it out, and I was so happy when i did. Today, there are people that will argue with me that they have TOTAL CONTROL over their files in Itunes … because … they can click on them and play them. Its like something is missing … the curiosity is gone … the adventure is gone … having to reinstall your operating system for the 34th time because you were playing around with crap trying to so something … is gone.

We are heading for a time when these same corporations and app developers will have TOTAL CONTROL, and they are already half way there. You won’t own your games, you wont own your music, you won’t own you movie/TV collection, you might not even own a car at that point… and the concept of OWNERSHIP will be lost to corporations that ALREADY are producing products that are half baked, arbitrarily restricted, and walled gardens to control you … and all the farts like me who remember what is what like to have control over … you know .. the crap you BOUGHT …. will be dead and gone … and this control will be the new normal and nobody will bat an eye. And of course, I could go on about how the psychological implications of a society that doesnt own crap will be more prone to Socialism and even Communism … but I’ll save that for the Thurott political website.

rant over.

now get off my lawn 🙂

Comments (42)

42 responses to “The Elitism Of Current Day Tech/Software/Gaming Companies”

  1. skane2600

    I suspect that if all the players who are obsessed with alleged SJW politics in games stopped buying them, it would have a negligible effect on sales.

    • waethorn

      In reply to skane2600:

      Last time I looked, BF5 sales were in the toilet.

      • skane2600

        In reply to Waethorn:

        Sales go up and down all the time, that's not evidence of any particular theory.

        • Thom77

          In reply to skane2600:

          EA told their costumers that if they don't like the "creative" decisions in the game, then dont buy it.

          Some gamer youtubers are boycotting the game, and promoting their hundreds of thousands of followers to boycott the game. Comments in BF5 videos show a huge amount of apathy for the game because of EA's attitude and the rewriting of historical battles to serve diversity when there are real historical situations in WW2 that included women that they could of used.

          Sales are down so much that a AAA title from a beloved franchise whose new game has been hyped for the past year ... is 50% off in short order.

          But there is no evidence.

          Meanwhile, Rockstar stays away from SJW politics, doesn't lecture or mock their customers, doesn't tell their customers to not buy their game, and delivers a masterpiece (Red Dead Redemption 2) that keeps true to the time period with realistic characters for its time period, including women right movement that nobody is complaining about because its not forced, its done fluidly ... and in 3 days they sell 725 MILLION COPIES which is 2nd all time to GTA5.

          Both are AAA, much anticipated widely known franchises.

          One company's main purpose was to "wake" their customers.

          The other company's main purpose was making an awesome game.

          Come on, don't be purposefully obtuse.

  2. vernonlvincent

    Yes - down with social justice. Boo social justice. Social Injustice all the way!


    • Daekar

      In reply to vernonlvincent:

      The end result of universal prosperity and happiness is desired by anyone with half a brain. The means usually advocated to achieve it (wealth redistribution, institutionalized discrimination, speech suppression), not so much.

      • skane2600

        In reply to Daekar:

        The negative means you mention are pretty much how wealth disparity was achieved in the first place.

        • Daekar

          In reply to skane2600:

          If we were fresh out of the Middle Ages, where anybody above the merchant class usually got there with the point of a sword, you'd have a chance of being correct. In the 21st century, you haven't a hope of being right unless we decide that every entrepreneur and productive individual who ever lived that climbed the economic ladder by their own ability also stole, discriminated based on arbitrary genetic traits, and tried to suppress free speech... well, it doesn't make a darn bit of sense when put like that, does it?

          The idea that economics is a zero-sum game was cutting edge back in 1600. We now know that this isn't the case now, and that wealth can be not only transferred by trade or theft, but also created. This means that your success doesn't come at my expense by definition.

          • skane2600

            In reply to Daekar:

            Nothing in my comment indicated that I was talking exclusively about the 21st century, yet it's ludicrous to claim that exploitation of people for money or power halted in the Middle Ages. Nevertheless, the primary indicator of success in the US is the wealth of one's parents. Wealthy conservatives implicitly acknowledge this truth with their concern over what they characterize as a "death tax". Surely in a true meritocracy children don't need to inherent money or property from their parents, if they are "productive" they'll "climb the economic ladder by their own ability".

  3. AnOldAmigaUser

    I imagine you get all worked up about the "war on Christmas" too.

    Sort of odd to hear people talk about the elite skills it used to require to work with PC games and then complain about elitism. Perhaps stopping at "Perhaps I am getting older and grumpier..." would have been better. Get over it, we are all getting older and grumpier. It is the natural condition of humanity.

  4. maethorechannen

    I always thought businesses were designed to make money, yet I am seeing businesses not only choosing, but in some instances, bragging about making decisions that are financially hurting the company.

    I think it's primarily caused by a belief that in the end they will make more money. They assume that people who aren't left leaning loud mouths will carry on buying their products. By pandering to the left they'll be far less likely to face calls for boycotts (and if they do face a boycott from the right, it'll be a far quietter call). And because the cargo cult of youth is strong in marketing departments and as the young almost always skew left compared to the old they look like they're down with the cool kidz.

    Obviously, it doesn't always work.

  5. Adlton

    Well, I do not feel that strongly about my entertainment. Most of this is easily explainable as sound bussines decisions (walled garden part and reacuring fees especially). Other things like more inclusive and diverse games are easily made trying to capture wider audience.

    If you think maximising the profits and making long term bets is elitism then fine i guess that is elitism (elitism is hell of a profitable thing, ask your nearest Hedge Fund/Law Firm/anything white collar where they get their employes). And creators have every right to put their political bias in things they create.

    Convinience is extremley powerfull engine for tech adoption. If Apple didn't nail convinience and UX friendlines they probably wouldn't be around anymore. After they became profitable with that approach everyone else wanted to copy page from their book.

    I do not play a lot of games personally sometimes i would play grand strategy games like CIV, EU or HoI and few RPG's. I remmeber rather vividly that it was rather big thing for me when I was teen that my caracter in many Bioware RPG-s could be gay. it brought them quite few bucks from me. People like to be represented in culture and games are part of it, thats not surprising fact. And of course that game studious will try to caer to markets that are not young male, they may be rahter clumsy about that but thats again somehing to be expected.

    There is a lot of people around that have disposable income and are not part of traditional gamer demographic, that has to be on every studio executive's mind and they are going to cater to them.

    Also, this is Paul's lawn :)

    • lvthunder

      In reply to Adlton:

      Why should sexual orientation be in games at all? Unless the game centers around that of course?

      • Daekar

        In reply to lvthunder:

        Because some people believe that it's a core part of a person's identity. I don't actually understand those people or why they think it's such a defining characteristic once you move past the very low bar of sophistication that is stereotyping, but there it is. Personally, all of the gay folks that I know are just normal people, and if they were placed in a videogame it would never be a relevant characteristic in any way (exactly as for straight people) unless sex was part of the story. Personal/sexual attraction and affection can be important as a motivation for a character, so it IS a legitimate thing, especially in story-heavy RPGs. I personally like the approach Bioware took in SWTOR.... let everybody hit on everybody, sleep with everbody, etc. Watching a YouTuber play a pan-sexual horndog character was a riot.

      • Adlton

        In reply to lvthunder:

        It was 2009 IIRC when i bough DA:O. And in 2009, in part of world that i lived at that age, it was one of few things that took gay caraters as something normal. It was nice touch and relatable.

        Why s. orientation shouldn't exist in RPG? It is a characteristic that exist, and personal realtionships are somewhat big part of RPG.

        And it's nice when pice of culure is realtable.

        • coreyp

          In reply to lvthunder:

          Why s. orientation shouldn't exist in RPG? It is a characteristic that exist, and personal realtionships are somewhat big part of RPG.

          It should exist. The issue is that most companies make insulting stereotypes instead of making good characters

  6. Greg Green

    I’m not sure elitism is the right thing to blame, but there does seem to be a decline in managerial abilities and/or coding abilities. Both MS and and Apple don’t seem to be as good as they were a decade ago.

    Maybe it’s the US tax code causing management to focus on acquisitions to improve returns rather than products that causes some of this.

  7. jimchamplin

    You completely lost me with the "SJW" whining. If you had a point, you buried with complaining that not everybody is a white male.

    Not accusing you of being an unrepentant gasbag, but you did go about 10% Alex Jones there.

    [Tosses a cigarette on your grass]

    • Daekar

      In reply to jimchamplin:

      SJW extends far beyond the exclusion of people of particular race and gender because of past actions of people that are placed in that subgroup. However, for the purposes of the games I've seen, it's an overall preachy attitude that extends to pushing the idea of equal outcomes for all, pushing negative male stereotypes of stupidity or hyperviolence, or generally painting other identity groups with the same brush rather than treating people as individuals. It's the artistic equivalent of the crap the news has been screaming about for 10 years now to such a degree that people who have done nothing wrong feel bad about who they are because of their race or gender.

      To be unrepentant, one must first have done something to repent for. Desiring gender- and racial-blindness in art and life rather than identity politics is not something to repent.

      • jimchamplin

        In reply to Daekar:

        The core of the issue is representation. Letting other people feel like they're actually part of something instead of having to see it through the eyes of someone who isn't like them.

        White straight men get lots of representation and don't feel the need to change anything. People who are not them get less and hope for more. That's the entire situation. I will end my participation in this topic with this clear and simple description of the problem. Do not bother replying as I will not follow up.

        I am a very opinionated person with strong beliefs that lean on the side of liberty over complacency, but I respect the site's de facto standard of decorum.

        I.E. I've said my part and have nothing more to say. No point in belaboring it. There's far more important things to talk about anyway.

      • skane2600

        In reply to Daekar:

        Racial and gender blindness would be perfect if the world started today.

        • Daekar

          In reply to skane2600:

          So we start doing the right thing today. Why does the existence of history justify doing the wrong thing?

          • skane2600

            In reply to Daekar:

            "Why does the existence of history justify doing the wrong thing?"

            You're begging the question. In any case it's not the "existence" of history at issue, it's the effect that history has on the present.

            If I stole from you yesterday, you wouldn't want to reset everything today with me keeping your money. Directly or indirectly white males have benefited from the reduced competition that has resulted from the discrimination toward others. In many cases, it's not our fault, but we shouldn't deny the facts or fight to maintain our relative privilege.

            • Daekar

              In reply to skane2600:

              You want to punish people for the sins of their great grandfathers? Seriously? By that logic, I should hate the Germans and Japanese for WWII, not live then for their vibrant cultures and industrial prowess. That's not how justice or logic work in the real world. I will take responsibility for my own actions. If some dead guy I happen to be descended from did things that are unacceptable in today's ethical framework, I have no guilt and such a situation requires nothing from me.

              Trying to apply an alien ethical framework to historical actions is the product of ignorance, not enlightened intellectualism. If you must judge people (it seems many people can't help it), judge them by their own standards, not your own, because that is the only way you will get any answers worth the trouble.

              • skane2600

                In reply to Daekar:

                "You want to punish people for the sins of their great grandfathers?"

                No, you are just making a straw man argument. BTW, some of these "sins" as you call them are still happening today. Your pattern seems to be to pretend this evil is in the past: the Middle Ages, now 150 years ago.

                People try to solve problems all the time that they weren't personally responsible for creating. You're under no obligation to help and nobody has forced you to do so.

                • Daekar

                  In reply to skane2600:

                  Please explain how advocating for racial/gender blindness (true equality) is denying facts or attempting to maintain privilege. Please also explain how anything except racial/gender blindness is not punishing people for their genetic or cultural heritage. Because one involves treating people the same, and the other involves discriminating against them.

                  The fact that these "sins" still occur sometimes today is quite beside the point, because they have nothing to do with punishing innocent people. That's like my suggesting that you should lose your right to vote when I commit a felony because you share my genetic heritage. This only makes sense if you view people as primarily members of a group, not as individuals.

                  As far as the problem that I'm under no obligation to help with, I have been helping with it my entire life. I was raised to value everyone equally regardless of whatever arbitrary racial or gender definitions society chooses to label them with, and that's how I live my life. I'm not such a fool to think that people that look different than I do somehow are less capable and need me to hold their hand - that's a bunch of racist nonsense.

  8. Daekar

    Well... I can't do much more than agree with you. The number of games I'm willing to support is at a record low thanks to SJW nonsense and totally insane levels of micro-transactions (which aren't even micro-sized) or lootbox greed. So far Nintendo has been good about it, and that's one reason why they keep getting my money - they have great characters and franchises, with classic male heroes and powerhouse women that are just awesome without needing to smack you in the face with their gender, ethnicity, etc. For example, if you told Samus Aran that she needed 3rd-wave feminism, she'd shoot you in the face and laugh because she's not designed to be a victim or be symbolic of cast-off oppression or whatever. She's just awesome in any context, not awesome because she's female and overcoming the patriarchy. The way EA and Activision-Blizzard are going, they'll never see another cent from me.

    I think part of the problem is that you and I entered computing during a time when there was a certain amount of knowledge and intelligence required to make them useful, and they were designed with that in mind. Now, they are generally designed for the lowest common denominator, which means for people that don't know what it means to control your files, wouldn't understand what to do to achieve it if they did, and don't care anyway. This has resulted in two things - a much greater number of people who are using technology in a rudimentary fashion without knowledge of how anything actually works, and a much greater amount of control wielded by the tech companies.

    I tried a remarkable number of music players for local files and I found ONE that was acceptable out of all those that I tried, and that's Media Monkey. The rest are just too simple, don't let you sort by enough fields, have slow UI response, don't parse embedded album covers in mp3s properly... collectively, that whole app genre is a mess. Going to Spotify isn't any better, really, there's just more garbage to look through via the terribly-restricted UI. If they wanted to make themselves indispensable, they could at least add sortable/filterable tags that DJs would value, like tempo, time signature, etc.

    I think that we're going to see a bit of a reactionary swing in the opposite direction as people realize how much they've abdicated to the tech companies, but it's never going to be like it was. The problem is that money doesn't flow to those who offer powerful software which empowers the user after they learn how to use it. It flows to those that offer stripped-down software that barely does enough to justify the name but is easy to use.

    I expect that even Microsoft will submit to those market forces of mediocrity at some point, and desktop Linux will then, if it still exists, be one of the only refuges left for those who value their independence from corporate control. This is one of the reasons why I have become so interested in open-source software over the last few years - the pattern is vast and obvious, and open-source is about the only thing I can see that might stem the tide.

    Waethorn's comment about 1984 is actually more accurate that I'd like to admit in some ways. The Dystopian future is already real, it's just leading us gently by the hand in a direction that leads to darkness and collectivism/power concentration at the end of a long winding road. The interesting thing is, most of the people contributing to this aren't doing it on purpose, it's not some evil global conspiracy. There's a long and perpetual cycle of wealth/power concentration and diffusion you can follow through history, and we happen to be headed towards an unusually effective concentration of power on this cycle. As long as technology doesn't change things so much that the cycle ceases to progress, everything will be OK in the end.

    • waethorn

      In reply to Daekar:

      Ingsoc is short for English Socialism. The way they accomplish this is to break down genders, race, nationalism, and speech so everything is a gray hodge-podge of non-identity. Eliminating identity is the way to achieve a dystopian future. In 1984, Ingsoc would declare war against another nation, then changed it to yet another one a day later, confusing citizens until they just repented and towed the party line, whatever it would be on any given day. Speech was brutally cut down to prevent free thought. Everybody wore the same gray clothing because anything else was deemed offensive and non-neutral. The elites ruled the world, and the citizens were just disposable human resources, brainwashed into doing their bidding.

      The difference today is that we have technology, disguised as shiny baubles, to feed the consumerist slave mentality.

  9. Chris_Kez

    I was about 10 or 11 when BattleTech and then MechWarrior came out and I remember being flattened by the idea of LosTech-- that in the future there could be these amazing technologies that no one knows how to recreate anymore because all the knowledge and infrastructure that went into their development is gone. I think we're nearly there.

  10. Usman

    I half get your question and half not. Yes we wanted a Skyrim MMO, but hey Bethesda doesn't want to do that. The part I get is your feeling of "Why are they not doing this thing the will be so cool and make them money, who wouldn't want a Skyrim MMO?", the part I don't get is, how is not doing that now dubbed as "elitism". They likely have dev teams that probably had enough of Skyrim or want to do something else.

    With regards to Apple not having a filesystem on the iPad, Apple has always been the one dictating users how to use their products. Using an apple product by default means you follow what the see as best. I see the elitism issue there, but that's been their identity for years. At this point, it's expected.

    What I would describe as an example of elitism is Sony at the launch of the PS3 and Microsoft at the launch of the Xbox One. They both had great success in the generation before those respective launches by being consumer friendly, then their hubris made them think they could do no wrong and cause them to falter their own product. Same thing with Steven Sinofsky and Windows 8.

    Elitism is not seeing a problem that is of your own making and saying it's all fine because you've been smelling your own farts for so long (terrible analogy, I know). It's also when you dictate the correct way is your way only.

    If a new feature or game has to be built from the ground up or a system has to be reimplemented that isn't a major show stopper for x percentage of people then it's down to time and money. In software development, there's always priorities; it comes down to time it takes, and the impact.

    And now coming to the SJW comment. Like what do you mean by that? I'm not a BF player, but lets just say hey in CoD there's now female characters, I couldn't give two horse shoes what I'm playing as. What's deemed as an SJW politics in video games? I loved Horizon, is Aloy being female an SJW political movement? The characters in the game were pretty diverse too, did that effect the game mechanics or story in anyway? I don't like reactionaries at all, completely discredited Anita Sarkesian way before gamergate (back when clips of her saying she didn't like video games, and she doesn't play those games either and uses other lets players gameplay), but can people seriously describe what's so "SJW" about different character gender and race in a game.

    So far sounds like my response is pretty much disagreeing with you or not understanding your premise. I do agree with you that, yes we are no longer owning things, it comes down to the economics of owning. I just spent £80 purchasing 6 Blu-rays of Digimon Tri. Yes I will own them forever and potentially play them whenever I want, I've also had to for the first time in ages, swap out a disc to play a movie (I know such a first world millennial problem). £80 is a lot of money, that's nearly years worth of Amazon Prime Video and Netflix. Regular forms of purchase now have to compete with streaming services. Consumers will choose high convenience and low cost, compared to purchasing, ticks both boxes.

    This rental/subscription model isn't just consumer goods, it's in business applications as well, Adobe Cloud and Office 365 are successful because of the low monthly recurring cost rather than large lump sum. Same thing with cloud, Amazon, Google and Microsoft are just renting out server capacity, not every business can afford to purchase new hardware due to scaling issue, out dated ness or even failure. They can however rent server space and scale as needed and theoretically, as they scale, they should be increasing their revenue to cover the cost of that scale up.

    This is a progression of the systems we've had before (renting a la blockbuster, redbox/lovefilm) now just amplified due to the digital capabilities we have via fast internet and cloud hosting services that allow these solutions to exist. Like you said could be an old man thing ?? that times are changing and so are the business practices.

    • Thom77

      In reply to Usman:

      I believe it is a form of elitism when a company basically tells their customer who want product A ... that they don't feel like making it and here is product B, take it or leave it. It's elitist because they are saying TO THE CONSUMERS that either 1) they know what the consumer wants more then the consumers do (I'm smarter then you) or 2) We don't care what you want and we will make Product B without worry because we know you will buy it anyway (Be happy with what you have, peasant)

      I mean , come on, EA is literally telling people that don't like their agenda driven games full of microtransaction to NOT BUY THEM. I mean there is something seriously wrong here when a company is telling people NOT to buy their product. At the very most, you sit in the conference room, make a decision that you know are going to anger your consumer, and privately say to each other, "Screw them. This is the direction we are going." ... but to mock the consumers is something that is bizarre to me, and its happening elsewhere like the NFL where players are telling fans "Just dont come to the games if you dont like us kneeling"

      Yes ... that is a form of elitism through and through, an air of invincibility that is derived from a company becoming so big that they lose site of HOW THEY GET PAID to begin with.

      And to make it clear, I don't believe having a female or black or (insert minority classification) in a game is SJW. But I think we all know when an agenda is being pushed, and I believe reasonable people who are intelligently informed on the gaming scene can blatantly see that there is an agenda being pushed and i don't think a lot of gamers (enough to make BFV reduced to 50% off) really want to be lectured to in their video games NO MATTER WHAT THE AGENDA IS. And to be clear, some developers are literally admitting it.

      I believe 100% that if the gaming developer scene started having Christian employees in mass (instead of SJW) and they started pushing pro-Christian themes in their games ... most of the SAME PEOPLE complaining now would be complaining about that too. I honestly don't think most gamers are sexist or racist or (fill in the blank)phobics ... I think they just don't like agenda driven games ... they want interesting stories that make sense because it is intelligently written, interesting characters that are interesting because of who they are and the decisions they make... not because they check a box on the diversity scale. And I think a lot of gamers (and people in general) find it intellectually insulting when situations or themes or characters are BLATANTLY manipulated for the SOLE purpose of pushing an agenda, in such a way, as to make the game artificial and turn it into just an TOOL to preach their ideas unto others .... they feel used and manipulated.

      They just want to play cool, fun games with cool, fun characters with cool, interesting stories ... without feeling like the only purpose of the game they are playing is actually to push an agenda.

      I responded to your reply instead of some others because it was reasonable and non-emotional, which i appreciate. Hope I have clarified myself. I want to make clear that my main point is that companies are making decisions with detrimental results and turn around and just dont care, and keep doing it, and the SJW angle was just ONE example out of many - I'm not on a crusade, its just boggles my mind to witness the slow train wreck.

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