Kansas Bill Seeking to Ban Cities and Towns From Building Broadband Networks Dies on the Vine

February 20, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Last month the lobbying group for various broadband providers that do business in the state of Kansas tried to ram a bill through the state legislature that would ban municipalities and towns from building their own broadband infrastructure. Today we have learned the fate of that effort via Ars Technica, and its good news for communities in the state that are desperate to have access to a decent broadband network.

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Kansas Supreme Court, Bar Association Promote iCivics

August 16, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

The Kansas Supreme Court and Kansas Bar Association announced support for promoting the use of retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor's educational video games in schools to teach students lessons about civics. Both the court and the association for lawyers in the state are advocating for the use of O'Connor's iCivics to teach children how various branches of government work.

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Rep. Mike Pompeo Urges Colleagues to Support CISPA

April 18, 2013 -

In an editorial penned for The Hill to convince members of congress to join him, Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-Kansas) says that the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) bill is a good thing. He extols the virtues of its commitment to the protection of Constitutional civil liberties and privacy because in Kansas protecting individual rights is in its citizens' "DNA."

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Wichita Man's Preliminary Hearing For Murder Charge Begins

December 23, 2010 -

Testimony in a Wichita, Kansas murder case that revolves around Madden NFL 2010 began this week in Wichita Kansas. A judge began hearing the events that lead to the death of one man at the hands of two brothers after an argument over cheating in the video game.

While playing Madden NFL 2010, 22-year-old Luke German was accused of cheating by two brothers - 26-year-old Christopher Redgate and 22-year-old Benjamin Redgate. The argument escalated, prosecutors say, into an assault with a metal pipe that lead to German's death. The brothers face second-degree murder charges for the crime. A medical examiner determined that German died of multiple blunt-force trauma injuries and strangulation.

A judge began hearing testimony about the October fight in a preliminary hearing for Christopher Redgate. His brother waived his right to a preliminary hearing in the Sedgwick County District Court.

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Zombie Game Eyed as Part of Topeka Revitalization Push

November 5, 2010 -

One component of a new initiative designed to draw visitors back to downtown Topeka, Kansas could involve a zombie-based videogame.

Students from the Washburn University Department of Art in Topeka are pitching a game that would begin with zombies, carrying anti-Topeka signs, overrunning a “boarded-up” rendition of the Kansas town. As the player wipes out the zombies, according to a story in the charmingly-named Alva Review-Courier, a “new, bright and revitalized downtown” would be revealed.

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Wii Stolen in Break-in at Senate Game Critic's Home

March 10, 2009 -

Perhaps it's for his grandchildren.

A Nintendo Wii was among items taken in a burglary of the Topeka home of U.S. Sen. Sam Brownback (R-KS), reports the Topeka Capital-Journal.

Brownback, a long-time critic of the video game industry, has twice proposed Senate legislation aimed at forcing the ESRB to play games to completion before assigning a rating. He has also taken Sony to task for the use of Congo coltan in the PlayStation 2.

Brownback, who once harbored presidential aspirations, said last year that he would not run for re-election to the Senate in 2010. Instead, he is considered a likely contender for the governor's position in Kansas.

Also missing from his home were a laptop, flat screen TV, check book and jewelry. The case is under investigation by local police.

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Another Obama Cabinet Nominee Brings Video Game Legislation Baggage

March 1, 2009 -

ABC News reports that President Barack Obama has turned to Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius (D) to fill the vacant cabinet post at the Department of Health and Human Services.

If confirmed, Sebelius will become the third member of the Obama cabinet with past ties to video game legislation. The others are Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Secretary of Commerce nominee Gary Locke.

As Governor in 2006, Sebelius pushed an unsuccessful attempt to legislate video games, saying at the time, "Video games and music lyrics promote violence..."

Ironically, in 2008 it was revealed that her son created a Grand Theft Auto-like board game and was marketing it by mail order from the Governor's official residence. At the time, Gov. Sebelius commented that she was proud of her son's creativity.

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Kansas Offers Citizens Game-like Tool for Budget Play

January 23, 2009 -

The Kansas Department of Transportation is offering citizens the opportunity to try their hand at balancing its budget - or not - via an innovative web-based tool.

Writing for the New York Times' Freakonomics blog, UCLA transportation researcher Eric Morris praises T-Link:

I can’t help but wonder how many urban planners were inspired to enter the profession by computer games like SimCity or Railroad Tycoon... these programs convey information about arcane topics like utility maintenance costs and right-of-way clearance in a fun and accessible manner...

 

Now the Kansas Department of Transportation has come up with a neat way to both educate the public about its services and get valuable feedback about customer preferences, using a game-like format. The T-Link Calculator allows you to set transportation policy in Kansas and see the fiscal results of your choices...

 

By presenting the information this way, [KDOT] reaches out to voters (particularly younger ones) who are accustomed to interactivity and immediate feedback from their information sources. I have a feeling that many people who would never think of sitting down and reading the state budget will warm to playing “transportation god” on this site.

Moreover, the site makes it clear that we can’t ask for everything from our government; tough budgetary choices have to be made...

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Will we ever get Half-Life 3?:

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Papa MidnightI don't think I've used the forums since the Wordpress days.10/02/2014 - 12:13pm
NeenekoI keep forgetting we even have forums.10/02/2014 - 11:48am
ZippyDSMleeA shame we can't have good convos in the forums, seems to me its time to nuke and restart fresh on them.10/02/2014 - 11:45am
Papa MidnightOh, no problem! Just wanted to let you know that it's what we're discussing. By all means, join in!10/02/2014 - 11:36am
E. Zachary KnightNeeneko, No problem. In juicy conversations, key points of discussion get pushed off quickly.10/02/2014 - 11:36am
NeenekoA rather scary censorship. I have known too many people and small companies destroyed by such pressure, so this unnerves me at a pretty personal level.10/02/2014 - 11:36am
NeenekoMy bad, I always have trouble working out what is going on in shoutbox10/02/2014 - 11:34am
Papa MidnightTo a point stated earlier, it very much is a form of indirect censorship. Rather than engage in rhetoric and debate, one side has instead chosen to cut-off opposing viewpoints at the knees and silence them via destroying their means of income.10/02/2014 - 11:28am
Papa MidnightNeeneko: the topic of Intel's dropping of Gamasutra is indeed part of this very ongoing conversation.10/02/2014 - 11:26am
NeenekoThis can't be good... http://games.slashdot.org/story/14/10/02/1558213/intel-drops-gamasutra-sponsorship-over-controversial-editorials10/02/2014 - 11:25am
Andrew EisenAnd there's also the consideration that the fact that a former IGN editor was one of the people who worked on the game's localization may be unknown (although in this specific case, probably not. Drakes been very visible at events IGN covers).10/02/2014 - 11:24am
Papa MidnightAlso, let's face it: people seem to believe that a conflict of interest can yield only positive coverage. Who is to say that Audrey Drake did not leave on bad terms with IGN (with several bridges burned in their wake)? That could yield negative coverage.10/02/2014 - 11:23am
Papa MidnightThat's a fair question, and it's where things get difficult. While Jose Otero may not have any cause to show favor, Jose's editor may, as may the senior editor (and anyone else involved in the process before it reaches publication).10/02/2014 - 11:21am
Andrew EisenWould such disclosure still be required if Fantasy Life were reviewed by Jose Otero, who wasn't hired by IGN until sometime after Drake left?10/02/2014 - 11:19am
Papa MidnightIn that case, a disclosure might be in order. The problem, of course, is applying it on a case-by-case basis; As EZK said, what's the cut-off?10/02/2014 - 11:19am
E. Zachary KnightAndrew, a disclosure would probably be in order as she likely still has a strong relationship with IGN staff. My follow up question would be "What is the statute of limitations on such a requirement?"10/02/2014 - 11:09am
E. Zachary KnightSleaker, my hyperbole was intended to illustrate the difference and similarity between direct censorship and indirect censorship.10/02/2014 - 11:07am
Andrew EisenOpen Question: Former IGN Nintendo editor Audrey Drake now works in the Nintendo Treehouse. Do you think it's important for IGN to disclose this fact in the review of Fantasy Life, a game she worked on? Should IGN recuse itself from reviewing the game?10/02/2014 - 11:07am
E. Zachary KnightSleaker, My thoughts on disclosure: http://gamepolitics.com/2014/09/25/what-your-gamergate-wish-list#comment-29598710/02/2014 - 11:02am
Sleaker@EZK - using hyperbole is a bit silly. I'm asking a serious question. Where's the line on disclosure as relates to journalistic involvement in the culture they report on?10/02/2014 - 10:59am
 

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