The Fight Rages On In 38 Studios Lobbying Case

September 23, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

The fight over attorney Michael Corso's part in allegedly lobbying Rhode Island officials is far from over, as highlight by the Providence Journal. Last week, hearing officer Louis DeSimone issued a decision giving attorney Michael Corso seven days to file lobbyist disclosure reports or pay a $2,000 fine.

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Hearing on 38 Studios Lobbying Activities Pushed to August

July 18, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

A hearing related to the failed $75 million loan deal for former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling's video game company 38 Studios that was supposed to take place yesterday (July 17) has been rescheduled for early August. Some of the key players in the deal were asked to attend, including Curt Schilling, Michael Corso - who represented the company as its legal counsel - and Thomas Zaccagnino, one of the company’s board members.

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Congresswoman Proposes Amendment to Stop FCC From Meddling With 'State Issues'

July 16, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

US Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) has always been opposed to the FCC regulating anything, but she has been particularly outspoken about the FCC's Open Internet Order since it was introduced in 2010. To that point, Rep. Blackburn recently said that she wants to make sure the FCC never interferes with "states' rights" to protect private Internet service providers from having to compete against municipal broadband networks.

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FCC Considers Preempting or Banning State Laws That Restrict Community Broadband Initiatives

June 11, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler says that state laws seeking to stop community-run broadband initiatives have to be dealt with, but he has not said how the agency plans to take on the thorny issue. In at least 20 states there are already legal restriction in place to thwart municipal broadband networks. Many of these laws or regulations were put in place with the help of campaign cash from ISPs, telecom companies (both regional and national) and trade groups representing these industries.

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Governor's Office Met With 38 Studios Lobbyist in 2011, 2012

May 8, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Richard Licht, director of the R.I. Department of Administration for Gov. Lincoln Chafee, said that he met with Michael Corso twice to talk about getting 38 Studios tax credits. Corso is an attorney who signed a $300,000 contract with Curt Schilling's game development company to lobby government officials in the state.

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Rhode Island State Police Help Secretary of State Investigate Possible 38 Studios Lobbying Violations

May 7, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

The Rhode Island State Police have joined the Rhode Island Secretary of State’s office in investigating potential lobbying violations by a political insider who represented 38 Studios prior to receiving its $75 million loan guarantee from the state.

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RI Secretary of State Launches Investigation Into 38 Studios Lobbying Activities

May 6, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

A news report on 38 Studios' alleged lobbying of the Rhode Island government prior to its $75 million loan deal in the state has sparked an investigation through the Rhode Island Secretary of State's office, according to WPRI.

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Comcast Unleashes Army of Lobbyists to Get Merger With TWC Approved

April 23, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Not content to sit on its laurels while it waits for various agencies to scrutinize and either approve or deny its $45.2 billion merger with Time Warner Cable, Comcast has unleashed an army of lobbyists and influencers on Washington D.C.

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National Governors Association Reiterates Support for the Marketplace Fairness Action in 2014

March 12, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

With the House Judiciary Committee set to hold a hearing on "Exploring Alternative Solutions to the Internet Sales Tax Issue" soon, the National Governors Association (NGA) today released a statement reiterated its strong support for the passage of the Marketplace Fairness Act.

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Comcast and Time Warner Mobilize Lobbyists for D.C. Influence Blitz on Merger

February 14, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

The day after Comcast announced its intentions to buy out Time Warner Cable, it mobilized its army of lobbyists and consultants to gauge the atmosphere in Washington D.C concerning the deal. The company has no problem lobbying lawmakers and padding their campaigns with cash to get the job done either.

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Retail Industry Leaders Association to Push for Data Privacy Online Taxes in D.C. This Year

February 10, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) said in a new report that it would push hard for the passage of an national Internet sales tax law and for better data privacy regulations this year. In its annual policy agenda, the trade group highlighted the issues it deemed to be of grave importance this year. A federal law to deal with online sales tax is at the top of the list. The group, which represents traditional retailers, believes that having a national sales tax collection law will levy the playing field so that online-only retailers don't have an advantage.

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Report: ESA Spent $3.9 Million in 2013 Fighting Against State and Federal Anti-Videogame Legislation, Lobbying

December 11, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

According to a Wall Street Journal report (membership required), the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) spent a considerable amount of money and effort in fighting anti-videogame laws in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maryland, and New Jersey - and in Oklahoma last year. Many of the bills have either died or are locked in legislative committees waiting for approval.

The ESA is also taking aim at a federal bill, according to records and a co-sponsor of the bill.

Former FCC Chairman: ISPs Need to Implement Data Caps

October 24, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Michael Powell, a former Federal Communications Commission (FCC) chairman (under President George W Bush) and now President and CEO of the National Cable and Telecommunications Association (NCTA), recently said that ISPs should be moving with urgency to implement data caps on their customers.

His remarks, chronicled by Multichannel News at the recent Cable-Tec Expo in Atlanta, were in response to a question about data caps.

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Activision Hires Prominent D.C. Lobbying Firm to Tackle Sen. Jay Rockefeller's Video Games Research Bill

September 9, 2013 - James Fudge

Activision Blizzard has hired a prominent Washington D.C.-based lobbying firm to take aim at legislation to research video games.

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Report: The ESA Spends More on Lobbying than the NRA - On Paper

July 16, 2013 -

In an extensive report on lobbying efforts in Washington, Games Industry International reveals that the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) spends more on lobbying efforts than the National Rifle Association - on paper, at least. But in reality a good lobbyist knows all the tricks of influence peddling through other spending that doesn't have to be reported because it isn't technically considered lobbying.

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IBM Executives to Lobby Hard for CISPA

April 15, 2013 -

According to The Hill, IBM - as a strong supporter of the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) - will send over 100 executives to Washington D.C. to hold nearly 300 meetings with lawmakers over a two-day period.

"We’re going to put our shoe leather where our mouth is," Chris Padilla, vice president of governmental affairs at IBM, told The Hill.

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ESA Hires Washington Insiders for Lobbying Efforts in D.C.

March 13, 2013 -

The Hill reports that the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) has hired former Capitol Hill aides Ali Amirhooshmand and Danielle Rodman. Amirhooshmand and Rodman will serve as directors of federal government affairs for the games industry lobbying organization.

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How Georgia Lawmakers Are Working to Keep its Citizens' Broadband Connections From Improving

February 13, 2013 -

If a town or city wants to have their own broadband infrastructure, they should be able to build it as long as it doesn't cost the state it is in taxpayer dollars. But there's a quiet movement - a greasing of the wheels, if you like - to put a stop to that by telcos and low-end broadband providers that rely on old infrastructure. The latest state to try and legislate limits on what towns and cities can do to improve broadband is in Georgia, where state lawmakers have introduced Georgia House Bill 282, or "the Municipal Broadband Investment Act."

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Vice-President Biden's Task Force to Meet With Advocacy Groups, Lobbyists to Discuss Gun Violence

January 9, 2013 -

Reuters is reporting that the National Rifle Association, victims of gun violence, gun safety groups, gun owners, and unnamed representatives from the film and video game industries will meet with Vice-President Joe Biden's task force set up to come up with solutions and answers in the wake of the Sandy Hook elementary school shootings in Newtown, Connecticut that resulted in the death of 20 children and six adults.

EMA 2013 Scholarship Applications Now Being Accepted

January 8, 2013 -

Applications for the scholarships to be awarded by the EMA Scholarship Foundation are due by March 1, 2013, the Entertainment Merchants Association announced this week. These academic scholarships will be awarded to employees of EMA-member companies and their immediate family members who plan on "undertaking undergraduate and graduate study on a full-time basis." Those selected for the scholarships will receive up to $6,000 total, which will be issued on an annual basis. More details below:

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Comcast Lobbyist Admits Using 'Internet for Poor' Program as Leverage to Influence NBC Universal-Comcast Merger

November 1, 2012 -

The lead lobbyist for Comcast freely admits that he used the promise of a new low-cost internet service for poor people as leverage against the FCC when the company was seeking to merge with NBC Universal in 2009. The news comes from a Washington Post profile DC lobbyist David Cohen, who has led Comcast's policy and lobbying efforts in the capital for over a decade.

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CCI Addresses Selection of Former RIAA Lobbyist to Review Evidence in 'Six Strikes' System

October 31, 2012 -

Last week we wrote a story about how the Center for Copyright Information (CCI) had named Stroz Friedberg to be its "impartial and independent technology expert" to review claims of copyright infringement as part of the new "Six Strikes" enforcement rules. The "Six Strikes" system was agreed upon by the MPAA, RIAA, and five major ISPs but one of the core tenets was that it would have an independent body to investigate the validity of claims of copyright infringement against file-sharers.

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NetCoalition Closing Soon, to be Replaced by The Internet Association

October 24, 2012 -

Longtime Internet trade group NetCoalition is slowly shutting down its advocacy and lobbying operations after a decade of services to the technology industry. The news comes from new termination reports during the recent lobbying quarter from the three major firms that conducted D.C. business for NetCoalition (TwinLogic Strategies, Jochum Shore & Trossevin PC and Moore Consulting). Those reports state that these groups will no longer be working for the group.

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Report: Former RIAA Lobbyist Firm Hired as Independent Technical Expert to Review 'Six Strikes' System

October 22, 2012 -

Next month the "Six Strikes" system to deal with online piracy and illegal file-sharing will be fully operational in the United States. The new rules - mutually agreed on by several major ISP's and trade groups representing intellectual property holders (the RIAA, and the MPAA) required that copyright infringement claims be investigated by an external company. This was one of the sticking points for ISPs and rightsholders seemed to happily comply.

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Entertainment Software Association of Canada Gets New CEO

October 19, 2012 -

The Entertainment Software Association of Canada announced that Jayson Hilchie is the new president and CEO of the lobbying group for the Canadian video game industry. Before taking on this new leadership role, Hilchie previously served in a similar role at Nova Scotia Business Inc., where he helped foster growth in that region's video game industry by aiding such studios as Longtail, Frontier Developments, and Radian6 establish offices in Halifax.

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Fourteen Tech Companies Form the Internet Association

September 19, 2012 -

Fourteen of the country's most recognized tech companies have banded together to lobby Washington on tech issues with the formation of a new trade group called The Internet Association. Companies joining this new group include Amazon, AOL, eBay, Expedia, Facebook, Google, IAC, LinkedIn, Monster Worldwide, Rackspace, Salesforce, TripAdvisor, Yahoo, and Zynga. The group is being led by Michael Beckerman, whose previous job was former deputy staff director of the House Energy & Commerce Committee. MIA from the list were Apple and Microsoft.

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An Analysis of Google's Kansas City Fiber Deal

September 7, 2012 -

Republican FCC commissioner Ajit Pai thinks that the Google Fiber in Kansas City is the cat's pajamas, calling it a model for other metropolitan areas to follow. He says the deal shows that "it is critically important that states and local communities adopt broadband-friendly policies when it comes to rights-of-way management."

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Retailers Exempt from SEC Disclosure Rule on 'Conflict Minerals'

August 24, 2012 -

While companies like Sony, Nintendo and many other are being called out for their use of "conflict minerals," a new SEC policy about disclosure of these materials being funneled out of the Democratic Republic of Congo will apparently not affect retailers.

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Zynga Spent $75K Lobbying for Online Gambling

August 16, 2012 -

Public documents unearthed by the Wall Street Journal reveal that social games maker and publisher Zynga spent right around $75,000 in lobbying fees to get its point across to lawmakers in Washington D.C. and Sacramento. So what is on the company's agenda? It wants online gambling legalized so that it can start offering players of its online social games real-world cash.

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Cybersecurtity Act Sponsors Have a War of Words with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce

July 30, 2012 -

Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) and the co-sponsors of his Cybersecurity Act of 2012 are not pleased with the conservative lobbying group the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and are firing back at the group for what they call "mischaracterizations" about the latest revisions to the bill. More specifically, Senator Lieberman is upset over a letter that the group sent to U.S. Senators urging them not to support the bill. The group opposes the further regulations the bill would put on U.S.

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Will we ever get Half-Life 3?:

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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
E. Zachary KnightSo a journalist reporting on general gaming news mentions a specific developer and their game involved in said news, and it is suddenly some nefarious conspiracy to hide a conflict of interest. I think someone is reaching for validation.10/02/2014 - 10:53am
Andrew EisenYes, imagine anyone insisting that two utterences of the phrase "Depression Quest creator Zoe Quinn" wasn't influenced by something happening in the future!10/02/2014 - 10:52am
Sleaker@Pap Midnight - So wouldn't it be any journalist writing about general gaming culture would need to disclose any and all links/ties to said general gaming culture to be ethical? Also @EZK to use you're own methodology, I'm still curious on the question10/02/2014 - 10:49am
KronoSure none of those are reviews, but it is positive exposure, which as illustrated by The Fine Young Capitalists, is pretty damn important for getting people to check out your work.10/02/2014 - 10:32am
Krono@Midnight and of course the article most people mention and insist was no way influenced by him being romantically involved only days later, and her friend beforehand here: http://goo.gl/xCzivK10/02/2014 - 10:29am
Papa MidnightThe term "lovers" might be pushing it given the apparent time frame, but I understand what you're saying. Even if they were friends at the time, then that may present impropiety. However, that calls for a Magic-8-Ball level of speculation.10/02/2014 - 10:26am
 

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