Why You Should Hate Stockholders
Stockholders are the scum of the earth people in the world. They’re the people that are rich and get rich quicker by trading in the stock market. They invest their not-so-hard earned cash into a company for one purpose: to get rich. Not that being rich is a bad thing. In fact, if it wasn’t for rich people, we wouldn’t have the inventions we have today. But where does being a stockholder mean you have one ounce of business sense about the product you’re investing into?
I’ve dealt with stockholders personally at one of my jobs. As a matter of fact, one of my bosses was a big trader in the stock market for our company, and he openly admitted to me that he had “no idea how [my] department works.”. Yet, he was a manager and a stockholder. This isn’t a rare case of one person. This is the majority of people. They get some cash, get enough of it, and invest in a company so they can turn $1 into $100. If it’s not doing it fast enough, then the company must be doing it wrong. At least in their minds.
These are the people that are currently involved in video games. They are the ones in charge of our games, telling them basically what the company should make and such. We usually blame the CEO’s of these companies, which we have good reason to, but their boss is a bunch of crazed doctors and lawyers who have no idea how the gaming world works but wants that cash money. Star Wars: Force Unleashed announced recently they sold 7 million copies. That’s a good accomplishment. However, I’m sure the stockholders are in their elitist meetings debating how Force Unleashed 2 can and should sell 8 million copies. If it doesn’t sale 8 million but sales another 7 million, they being screaming that the product was a disaster and shouldn’t be made anymore. Since they own a lot of the company, you’re game might not be made again, until years and years later or unless the publishers can promise some huge sales on the next investment.
Or the stockholders just use the ol’ “it was piracy that’s done this” so that the market will think “Well, those crooked customers! We should waste government time and tax payer money and use home land security to bust software pirates!”. Let’s just get this out: piracy is wrong but pirates don’t buy video games. You can’t go to a torrent website, look at those figures and with any logical though think that if X amount was pirated, that’s X amount of customers we lost. No, because pirates aren’t buying games anyway. If you took gaming away, they’d just find something else to pirate. Do you think the navy ever caught pirates, took their plunder back, and then the pirates became upstanding citizens that joined the navy? No. They stay pirates until they die. This is very important because to stop the pirates, the CEO’s of these companies have to do something. They could look into the matter like a few select CEO’s have successfully managed to do (which is openly talk to the pirates), but that won’t stop all piracy. Those stockholders, and even the CEO, wants that solution to end all. That “solution” is DRM.
If you haven’t read recently about Assassin’s Creed 2‘s DRM, you probably should read all the details, but in a nutshell, it means if you’re not constantly online, you can’t play your singleplayer game. The game requires constant verification from Ubisoft’s severs to have your game run. What if your internet goes out? Don’t worry, you just lose your progress in your game until the servers kick back on. This, my friends, is probably the biggest reason stockholders should cease to make any discission. DRM is a much bigger failure than the war on drugs. It doesn’t even work. SPORE was cracked within weeks and the only people left with an actual game and not something that requires limited activation were the ones not buying the game. Fair? Absolutely not!
If we want gaming to get better, publishers should worry less about what makes business sense and more on what makes their customers happy. It’s not DLC creation while the game’s still being made. It’s not DRM, any for that matter, since no DRM has ever worked. It’s not high prices for video games. It’s not flooding us with video games either. We don’t need semi-annual Call of Duty games. We don’t need LEGO Monkey Island Rock Band DJ Hero Deluxe Hyper Super Edition every time you need some extra lunch money. We, as customers, should be way above the stockholders. Publishers should be more worried about us buying their game without putting root kits onto our computers to track their legit customers. Publishers also need to acknowledge that just because a game doesn’t sell very well, doesn’t mean much these days since just in America, unemployment is in the double digits. Food and family (should) come above our toys. Instead of worrying about making the biggest profit, be happy with what you get. The stockholders are investors. Sometimes investments don’t work out the way you want, but that’s where you just let the greed monsters die off and worry about making us little guys happy. The people that ultimately are your boss.