Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in Song

October 17, 2008 -

The Little Big Planet launch won't go off next week as originally scheduled.

As reported by Joystiq, Sony is delaying LBP worldwide due to concerns about Qur'an references in a single song file. SCEE issued a statement on the situation:

During the review process prior to the release of LittleBigPlanet, it has been brought to our attention that one of the background music tracks licensed from a record label for use in the game contains two expressions that can be found in the Qur'an. We have taken immediate action to rectify this and we sincerely apologise for any offence that this may have caused. We will confirm the new launch date shortly.

Joystiq reports that the tune in question is Tapha Niang by Grammy winner Toumani Diabaté. From Joystiq's report:

From the brief research we've done (um ... Wikipedia), we have yet to find evidence to suggest "Tapha Niang" (or any Toumani Diabaté production for that matter) has been criticized for possible religious offenses prior to today's development. In fact, a profile published by Taipei Times describes Toumani Diabaté as "a devout Muslim, with his own prayer room next to his office."

GP: SCEE, still smarting from the Resistance / Manchester Cathedral controversy, is likely being extra-cautious here in an effort not to step on anyone's religious toes.

Thanks to: GP reader Josh Thompson for the tip!

UPDATE: Just got this e-mail with reviewer info from Sony:

Please be sure to check out the latest PlayStation blog post regarding LittleBigPlanet for the PS3.  Feel free to move forward with publishing reviews and features, but note that SCEA will begin shipping LittleBigPlanet to retail in North America the week of October 27th. 

UPDATE 2: Kotaku has a translation of the offending passages:

Every soul shall have the taste of death...  All that is on earth will perish...

UPDATE 3: Here's the official PlayStation blog announcement. Doesn't add much, although some of the commenters are outraged.


Comments

Could Sony give WARNINGS?

 Why not, just like any other game, put a warning on the back of the case that ONE of the songs contains words that may be offensive to some cultures? I don't get why this has to be such a big deal. Plus, how many people will actually buy the game who are Muslim and who can understand this language? The game is focused toward ENGLISH speaking people, is it not? But, this one song will not change the outcome of the quality of the game. It will still be great! 

RAM

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Reminds me of the outcry over Kakuto Chojin for the original XBox.  Microsoft recalled all of the unsold copies when one of the music tracks was discovered to have chants from the Qu'ran.

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Yep.

 

Organized religion is certainly doing its part in the advancement of the species...

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

It's nothing special about Islam. 

I've worked on childrens' games before.  Geopolitical issues are class 1 bugs.  They're seen as as important as a crash.  And the geopolitical guys are extremely conservative.  We had mild inadvertant* innuendo removed, graphics changed because they portrayed negative stereotypes of certain cultures, or because it suggested negative treatment of national flags. 

Compared with these, taking a piece of a holy book out of context, not to mention a piece advocating death and destruction is pretty severe. 

*To be fair, it was deliberate but obscure enough for plausible deniability.

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

 This thing is going to have to cost Sony MILLIONS...

I was in Wal-Mart last week on Tuesday and they had the game on the shelves already...two full rows on the case with more stacked above...but when I tried to purchase it they couldn't scan it through and all the fighting I did was not enough to walk out with that game.

That means they are going to have to get all those copies back from all the stores across North America.

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Those passages sound tamer than most metal lyrics, there's probably stronger stuff in rock band or guitar hero for fucks sake. There goes hope for Rock Band: Cannibal Corpse...

Thats the kind of thing I think when I make it through a hard fight in a game or when someone in the cinema gets a phone call while I'm watching a movie!

 

Maybe they could put "Easily offended whackjob" advisories on games. "Warning, contains 2 horribly offensive references to the Qur'an." or "Warning: Contains traces of FUN! (and nuts)"

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Islam and gaming combine yet again!

Honestly, I think that passage is fucking brutal. Sounds like standard Warhammer 40k type babble.

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

We all die at somepoint, and eventually humanity is going to run itself into the ground...

 

sounds about right.

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Agreed, sounds more to me like a statement on mortality than any kind of directive or challenge.

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

I agree - nevertheless, it doesn't sound dissimilar from what you'd find in a 40K codex.


-- teh moominz --

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

It is so easy to offend people... So just dont bother trying to please those who will never buy the game anyway. Sony needs to stand up for itself and just say to those who are offended that if you don't like it, don't buy our game then. Not just change it and cause a delay. and all that over two lines of lyrics???? I just feel that this has been taken too seriously than what it needs to be though.
TBoneTony

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

That "offending passage" pretty much sums what the Bible, Torah, and Qur'an are about. They all tell you that you will eventually move on to another place and the end would come.

Happy times.

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

 I don't understand why a quote from someone's religious text would offend them. The few video games that come out of Muslim countries are full of Qur'anic references and that's obviously fine. One would think they would be grateful to Sony for speaking one of their beliefs? I know it's a violent couple of lines but it's in there. This would make more sense if it was delayed to avoid offending everyone else. ¯\(o_0)/¯

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

It's just how they are, man.

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I AM DOOMED TO HAUNT JACK THOMPSON'S DREAMS UNTIL HIS CRUSADE AGAINST VIDEO GAMES ENDS.



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I AM DOOMED TO HAUNT JACK THOMPSON'S DREAMS UNTIL HIS CRUSADE AGAINST VIDEO GAMES ENDS.

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

ANDREW EISEN WINS THE INTERNET!!!

 

 

Seriously, Andrew. Good show.

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I AM DOOMED TO HAUNT JACK THOMPSON'S DREAMS UNTIL HIS CRUSADE AGAINST VIDEO GAMES ENDS.



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I AM DOOMED TO HAUNT JACK THOMPSON'S DREAMS UNTIL HIS CRUSADE AGAINST VIDEO GAMES ENDS.

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Oh goody.

Towelheads ruin everything for everyone. Nothing new here.

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Hey maybe these islamofascists are on to something. We should try the same thing regarding DRM. After all if big giant Sony caves in so quickly with very little media coverage or credibility it may be worth exploring...

-------------------------------------------

"The most difficult pain a man can suffer is to have knowledge of much and power over little" - Herodotus

--------------------------------------------------------------------------- "The most difficult pain a man can suffer is to have knowledge of much and power over little" - Herodotus

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

To be seen to be messing around with Islam is the last thing a company wants. This is actually quite costly due to the closeness to release, and also it puts it into the public realm that there may be some content in there that is offensive to Muslims, if Sony didn't make a statement on it no one would have been any wiser.

Sony are trying to avoid the situation that the Danish newspapers had with those Mohammed cartoons that were met with many protests, in which some Muslims called for the murder of the people involved. It again comes down to the issue of whether non-Muslims should be governed by Islamic principles and its affects over "freedom of speech". If it is decided that this content is offensive to Muslims, shouldn't we ban all content which shows homosexuality for instance? Because that is also offensive to most religious folk.

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

But in this case, they would be getting upset because of a song that was made by a Muslin, with a different group of Muslims getting upset about it.  So their disagreement is being forced onto the rest of us by one group winning out over us all.  Makes as much sense as all PS3 and 360 games being edited to an E rating because some group of grandma gamers wants the violence gone because they are offended by it.  The small group is appeased, but the rest of us are paying for it.

Jeremy Powers aka Zen
Panama City, Fl.

Zen aka Jeremy Powers
Editor and Host of the Zenspath Podcast (now on iTunes)
www.ZensPath.com
XBL: "PsychoticZen" PSN: "Zenspath"
Nintendo Network: "Psychoticzen", 3DS: "0860-3238-7260

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Damn it,  how can i play Fallout 3 and LBP at the same time before gears 2 comes out?

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Couldn't they release the game on schedule and have one of those "you NEED to update to play this game" patches to disable the "offensive" song?

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Yes and as I understand it, they're doing that in addition to the recall so that anyone who got the game early will be taken care of as well.

 

Andrew Eisen

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Pandralisk, O Pandralisk

Wherefore art thou, Pandralisk?

 

(just for teh lulz, mind)

-- teh moominz --

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

He would either fill half the page with his usual hateful bullshit, or he would rage that someone quoted the koran.

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

LOL

He'd probably be typing with his forehead by this stage ;)

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Wow! 

On that note from Sony this gives me a grand idea!  Let's get DRM added as an offense to [insert religion here] shall we?  We've seen religion seems to be the great equalizer when it comes to the big companies in the media biz.

"Volume helps to get a point across but sharp teeth are better."

"Volume helps to get a point across but sharp teeth are better."

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

ROFL! I just posted the same idea before reading your post.

-------------------------------------------

"The most difficult pain a man can suffer is to have knowledge of much and power over little" - Herodotus

--------------------------------------------------------------------------- "The most difficult pain a man can suffer is to have knowledge of much and power over little" - Herodotus

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

-hmm-

Let's see now

I remember playing a demo for the first Bloodlines games. This game had violence and clearly biblical references. Fallout 3 has, admitted by the Lead Designer himself, a quote from the Bible. And yet, Christians do not have seem to have a problem with this. And the few that do is told to simply not buy the game. Why can't it be so for the (few) people who maybe have the problem with this game?

As for putting words in the Qu'ran to music, one artist apparently already did this? as I understand it?

I don't know whether or not it is correct that moslems are not allowed to put expressions in the Qu'ran to music or
not. My best bet would be that if you asked one type of Imam, he would say OK while another type of Imam would say NOT OK. In the wahabistic tradition of Saudi-Arabia, I'm pretty sure that this would ne be big no-no - but this is only 1 (one) interpretation of the Qu'ran or the Hadiths.

And perhaps more to the point:

Isn't the point of this cute, harmless game, Little Big Planet, to teach people that we're all one earth and to respect each other. Then why can't the game have referenceres from the Qu'ran in it - as a way of saying moslems are just like you and me - and still the game can be looking cute...

 



 

 

 

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Realtl depends on how big a deal it is to have that text with music.  If that's one of those major things, like staying kosher, keeping the American Flag from touching the ground, or using "The Lord's" name in vain, then changing the game to not do something offensive lends itself more toward the idea you're describing at the end of your comment.

Inclusion is good.  Appropriate inclusion as viewed by all parties is ideal, I think.   Better a gumbo with distinct flavors than a melting pot that only tastes like one thing, no?

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

'Isn't the point of this cute, harmless game, Little Big Planet, to teach people that we're all one earth and to respect each other. Then why can't the game have referenceres from the Qu'ran in it - as a way of saying moslems are just like you and me - and still the game can be looking cute...'

 

bingo EXACTLY what i was thinking. Seems completely daft.

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

So daft that it couldn't possibly be a PR stunt?

JUST saying...

-- teh moominz --

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Anybody else think this MIGHT be a last minute PR stunt to garner headlines for LBP in the properly mainstream press?

Would be an expensive way to do so, but it might also attract more sales from the largest audience to whom LBP is well suited. It's also the audience that's least likely to have heard of LBP to date.

Just a thought...

-- teh moominz --

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

That would probably make sense if the game had not gone gold and was already being shipped out.  It will likely cost them more to have all the games reshipped, edit the songs out, then send the new "gold" disc to the factory and likely throw away all those bad discs(unless they reuse them somehow) then the extra free PR press they get from this (which probably wont be much, if any with the election and economy in the news atm).


Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Fair point


-- teh moominz --

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Why bother honestly?  They stand to lose MORE people than they would ever gain, and already had so many people chomping at the bits to get their hands on this game.  Just look at how much the beta codes were going for on ebay just so people could play for a short time before the game was released.  Plus, this isn's Rockstar lol.

Jeremy Powers aka Zen
Panama City, Fl.

Zen aka Jeremy Powers
Editor and Host of the Zenspath Podcast (now on iTunes)
www.ZensPath.com
XBL: "PsychoticZen" PSN: "Zenspath"
Nintendo Network: "Psychoticzen", 3DS: "0860-3238-7260

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Hang on... I've not checked teh GAF or N4G in quite a while, but are people saying that they won't buy this game now?


-- teh moominz --

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

That's just insane, it's not using them in any insulting manner from what I can tell, it's like saying that Biblical references in Vampire movies (Cry Little Sister from the Lost Boys for example) are somehow 'offensive'.

If the song was used in poor context, or in an insulting manner then fine, and I'll admit not to know the minutae of Islamic beliefs, but this isn't as though it were like the cartoons that got so famous by causing outrage, or the rather poorly placed prayer call in another computer game, it's simply words from a backing track without context.

I wonder if there are any Islamic GP readers who could clarify to me whether this could be considered offensive, or whether Sony are just PCing themselves into stupidity?

I don't have a problem if it IS considered offensive, to be honest, it shouldn't delay it by much, and Sony should have researched that up before going into production, but this appears to be over the top political correctness for the sake of political correctness, which probably causes more religious tension than it fixes, since people will just assume it is Muslims being over sensitive, when in truth, it's Sony being over sensitive.

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

the quran literally means the word of god. And using it in this kind of way is offensive because to us it is an insult on god and the message of the quran.  Same thing with showing a picture of the prophet mohammed (may peace be upon him) it destroys the real meaning of the quran and creates arguments (an example of this would be the argument that christians have among themselves about what color jesus was does it really matter what color he was no it doesn't thats one reason that we don't have pictures to represent anybody just there name) and not to mention that it is idol worship.

la illaha illa allah mohamedon rasoul allah. there is no god but god mohamed is the prophet of god.

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

I'm not Muslim but from what I understand, putting words from the Qar'an to music is, in and of itself, offensive.  And that's fine.  I'm sure Sony didn't intend to offend anyone and taking steps to make sure they don't is admirable.

That said, a day zero patch (which, as I mentioned above, has already been created) should be adequate.  There is no need to recall and delay the game for the entire world.

 

Andrew Eisen

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Apparently the song is 2 years old. And written by a devout muslim.

Why the hubub now?

 

 

 

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Because, just like every religion it seems, while they are both of the same religion they don't view it the same way.  So Sony is making these changes to please one small group over everyone else.  It's like the whole "christian metal" thing (drives me nuts honestly) where some people find it ok because of the content, while others just find it insulting because it has anything to do with metal.

Jeremy Powers aka Zen
Panama City, Fl.

Zen aka Jeremy Powers
Editor and Host of the Zenspath Podcast (now on iTunes)
www.ZensPath.com
XBL: "PsychoticZen" PSN: "Zenspath"
Nintendo Network: "Psychoticzen", 3DS: "0860-3238-7260

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Oh man, christain metal is one the biggest insults to me. Did you know they claim to have christain un-black metal? Its just so frigging stupid.

(and yet i though a comment like religion must die is harsh, lol)

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

i agree, but as i was told a little bit ago, not everyone has online conection. Right zen? XD

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Yep, that's prety much how that sadly has to go. Still going to drive me made have to send the games back since I found out a bit ago that my stores already have them in for next weeks launch.  So I will have the game in my hand TONIGHT (note: still not able to actually BUY it until next week originally), but now it may be late November until we get it back again. 

Zen aka Jeremy Powers
Editor and Host of the Zenspath Podcast (now on iTunes)
www.ZensPath.com
XBL: "PsychoticZen" PSN: "Zenspath"
Nintendo Network: "Psychoticzen", 3DS: "0860-3238-7260

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Fine.  Then offer a trade in program for those few users.  Problem solved and there's still no reason for a worldwide recall.

 

Andrew Eisen

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

The problem with this is that it ca't be solved like how they did the Wii Guitar Hero III replacement.  That was for a tech glitch that didn't actually offend anyone, just annoy them.  This has the potential of getting a group of different religeous groups up in arms at Sony for releasing this "offensive" game.  If they swap the copies out, they will still be abe to say that it was released in the first place which can have a large impact on their system and game sales if enough Muslims decide they can not have a PS3 because it may support some form of insult to their religion.  So even if the replacement is made available day one somehow, those "uncut" copies will still be used as ammo.  Look at GTA: San Andreas for example.  Even though you had to use a 3rd party device to unlock the content, and the worst of it was only on PC (and the nudity was another patch that was not on the disc) people still to this day use it as ammo against Sony and other companies (yes..this is pointed at you Jack..your one of the few stupid enough to keep this going).

Jeremy Powers aka Zen
Panama City, Fl.

Zen aka Jeremy Powers
Editor and Host of the Zenspath Podcast (now on iTunes)
www.ZensPath.com
XBL: "PsychoticZen" PSN: "Zenspath"
Nintendo Network: "Psychoticzen", 3DS: "0860-3238-7260

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

It really comes down to who wants to be the bigger man (for lack of a better phrase).  Sony, in my opinion, should address the concerns of this minority but not at the expense of everyone else.

Likewise, offended Muslims should not expect Sony to address their objection at the expense of everyone else.

 

Andrew Eisen

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

Got my stopwatch on how long JT wil take to respond on that.

But yeah, honeslty, in my opinion, developers and creators should mayby check first what they put in. I mean, it doens't hurt right? Kinda like an essay, check it over so that the grammer and spelling are good. (Irony is that my typing sucks haah)

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

I'm kinda surprised JT hasn't tried to go after some of the more umm.. colorful Japanese games that can only be bought online(unless there is some retail store that has them..unlikely).  On the above game though, you would think they would have discovered the songs before the game went gold.

 

Re: Little Big Planet Release Delayed Over Qur'an References in

I think Jack is smart enough to realise that trying to purge the internet of porn is a losing battle. And besides if those games are hosted on Japanese servers, I don't think an American law can get rid of them. Although Jack sending a judge Japanese porn would be kinda funny.

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