ESA Chief: 'Active Shooter' Game Does Not Represent Gaming Industry


A recent video game depicting a school shooting was decried Monday by the CEO of the Entertainment Software Association, a trade group for gaming companies.

But Mike Gallagher said Monday during E3, a huge gaming convention in Los Angeles hosted by the ESA, that "'Active Shooter' is not the industry."

The controversial video game appeared last month on Steam, a website on which developers sell their games, and quickly sparked online outrage. More than 100,000 people signed a petition asking Bellevue-based Valve, which operates Steam, to pull the game off the site.

Valve eventually did just that, saying the Russian developer who made the game was a "troll." Valve has faced controversy in the past over what it allows onto Steam, and the company said in a blog post last week that it would let game developers publish nearly anything on the site, as long as the content wasn't "illegal, or straight up trolling."

Some criticized Valve online for the move, saying the company should take more responsibility. Others say it fits within Valve's values to be agnostic and let creative work stand as developed.

Valve has not defined exactly what falls within the "trolling" category.

Gallagher met with Valve after the incident, and on Tuesday said he commended the company on its "thoughtful" response to the situation. He noted that Valve said there is more to come on the topic, and said he believes Valve is "absolutely motivated" to do the right thing.

Valve wrote in its blog post that it would create tools for people to control and filter what games they saw on site.

"Active Shooter" was never released on Steam, and Valve has made it clear it will never make it back on the site.

"'Active Shooter' was not in the best interest of anything," Gallagher said. ___

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