In 2013, after the announcements at E3, the world learned of a 24 hour check in policy and a no lending/trading/used game policy for the newest Microsoft console Xbox One. And the internet exploded. People HATED that and they shunned Xbox.
June 19, 2013 at 2:00 PM, six days after E3 2013 ended, Xbox released an announcement on their website xbox.com with two major facts.
An internet connection will not be required to play offline Xbox One games
After a one-time system set-up with a new Xbox One, you can play any disc based game without ever connecting online again. There is no 24 hour connection requirement and you can take your Xbox One anywhere you want and play your games, just like on Xbox 360.
Trade-in, lend, resell, gift, and rent disc based games just like you do today
There will be no limitations to using and sharing games, it will work just as it does today on Xbox 360.
Congratulations Geeks. We won. Now what? Do we push forward and argue the price? Do we fight the Kinect? Does this victory even matter anymore? Is it too late for them? And then there is the big question:
Do we even bother buying an Xbox One?
Yes. Yes we do and it is vitally important for all of geekdom that we do.
Before I go further let me admit two things. I am a Nintendo fanboy foremost but I’ve thrown my hat (not figurative – I actually wear a hat) behind Microsoft in the last generation. I choose them over PS3 (although I eventually did buy a PS3 years later). I am on team Microsoft. The second thing I have to admit is that I was planning on buying an Xbox One before this came out; no lend and 24 hour check-in and all. So now that you are aware of what my biases are you understand why they don’t matter.
Geeks are a weird bunch. There are so many of us and we are so varied. We love to take sides and we live to argue. It is very rare that we agree or unite on anything. We can’t agree on what makes a better movie? Who is a better Captain? What is a better system? Or what is a better game? Is this a bad thing? Not at all. Geeks are varied and that’s a great thing!
But for once geeks united, almost unanimously, and against the Xbox One and we said NO. NO MICROSOFT. NO. WE DO NOT LIKE THAT. Microsoft caved. Geeks won! Microsoft listened to our complaints and they changed things. They even entitled their announcement ‘Your Feedback Matters’.
So now Geeks have a responsibility. We have to buy an Xbox One.
Geeks spoke out as a united front, the likes that had not really been seen since Star Trek’s cancelation, and we got a major corporation to change its product. They adapted their major product, one that will be a landmark for almost a decade, based on the feedback and complaints of the geek community. They altered it to meet our wants and our needs.
Now we have to buy an Xbox One. In our capitalist society if we want to punish a company we refuse to buy their product. This means if we refuse to buy their Xbox we are punishing them for listening to our feedback. So if we don’t buy an Xbox all we say to the business community is that we aren’t worth paying attention to, that we shouldn’t have a say
More and more we are being taught that the opinions and cultures of geeks and nerds don’t matter. Iron Man 3, Wolverine: Origins, The Dark Knight Rises and Man of Steel show us that comic book movies are no longer for comic book fans. If they were – SPOILER WARNING – The Manderin wouldn’t have been an actor, Batman wouldn’t have quit twice in one movie, the Merc with the Mouth wouldn’t have his mouth sewn shut and ruined, and Jonathon Kent would never have told Clark to let children die. Comic book movies, of which I am still a fan, are being mined for their name and appeal without consideration for the audience that made them big names.
The Wii, smartphones and FB have taught us gaming isn’t for gamers anymore. Nintendo made the majority of their money on the Wii from mini-game collection and casual gaming products. A company that essentially created the hard-core gamers ignored us to make a system nearly devoted to casual gamers. FB and smartphone do much the same. In November 2010, io89uigital Trends stated that “with 36 million downloads, Angry Birds is one of the most mainstream games out right now”. Why bother making a AAA game when you can make a casual one like Angry Birds and make $36 Million.
Even clothing store like Stitches or Walmart, stores that would often rather be caught dead before selling ‘geek apparel’ have actively sold Mario and/ Batman shirts thanks to the mainstream appeal of shows like The Big Bang Theory.
So if we want to continue to be heard, to be respected and if we want to continue being a force worth listening to, we have to back up our decisions. We have to stand up for what we fought for. We have to support our wins or else the companies will never listen to us again.
It works for any product. For example: Say we all complain that Siri’s voice is bad and we want a new one and they change it, we have to support our win. If we want a sequel to our favorite book and beg the author until he complies, then we better buy the book.
We’ve seen it in history. Fan made such an outrage when Sir Arthur Conan Doyle killed off Sherlock that he had to bring him back and fans bought the stories.
The last thing we want to re-eneact the what happened with the show Jerico. A popular show that got low ratings. It got axed after season one and after a massive write in campaign by fans, got renewed. Season Two aired and ratings dropped, and stayed at, and all time low for the show. It quickly got re-canceled.
Geek have proven they have the power to change things if they wish but that powers only means something if we follow through; if we support what we’ve fought for and reward what we got changed. Otherwise the power will quickly vanish.