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Jack Thompson Calls Cops on Penny-Arcade 913

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the i'm-gonna-tell dept.
Anon1001 sent us the latest developments in the ongoing saga between Miami Attorney Jack Thompson and Penny-Arcade. So far the story goes that Jack has filed a wrongful death suit against Rock Star, claiming that GTA is a cop killing training simulator responsible for the murder of a pair of cops. He also offered $10k to charity if anyone who would develop some ridiculous murder spree game. When someone did it, and he changed his mind and Penny-Arcade donated the cash instead. All of this is being documented on the Penny Arcade website, in phone calls, rants and comics, as well as an 'I Hate Jack Thompson' T-Shirt. (Note, Slashdot's parent company owns ThinkGeek). He has now called the cops claiming harassment. Update: 10/18 17:40 GMT by Z : It seems like this confrontation has been brewing all summer. The most recent altercation is just another link in the chain made by Thompson's reaction to Hot Coffee and his crusade against the Sims 2. Further, PA has put up the scan of the letter to the cops, and a photo of the check.
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Jack Thompson Calls Cops on Penny-Arcade

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  • Disbarrment (Score:5, Funny)

    by Gojira Shipi-Taro (465802) * on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:01PM (#13818331) Homepage
    It's going to happen very soon now, as Jack is getting loonier and loonier. He keeps dancing around direct legal threats, because he knows what will happen. Soon he will slip, and soon after that he won't be a lawyer anymore, and won't THAT be a shame?
    • Re:Disbarrment (Score:5, Insightful)

      by mboverload (657893) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:11PM (#13818432) Journal
      This really reminds of of McCarthy. People eventually saw him for what he was, a fucking lunatic.
    • IANAL & YANAL (Score:4, Insightful)

      by ackthpt (218170) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:16PM (#13818489) Homepage Journal
      It's going to happen very soon now, as Jack is getting loonier and loonier. He keeps dancing around direct legal threats, because he knows what will happen. Soon he will slip, and soon after that he won't be a lawyer anymore, and won't THAT be a shame?

      How, pray, does an attorney get disbarred for being a loonie? Half the western governments would lose representatives, MPs, etc. on that claim. More to the point:

      He has now called the cops claiming harassment.

      He will now harass PA and the thing is, he knows full well how to do it and could make PA suffer in the short run.

      I have no doubts he has nary a leg to stand on, bringing this all upon himself by raising himself to a Public Figure, which surrenders certain protections.

      • Re:IANAL & YANAL (Score:5, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @02:15PM (#13819058)
        How, pray, does an attorney get disbarred for being a loonie?

        Why, dear reader, by doing exactly what the parent poster indicated:

        "He keeps dancing around direct legal threats, because he knows what will happen."

        We tend to call that "barratry" here in the US. And yes, it is actionable.
    • by KingSkippus (799657) * on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:18PM (#13818498) Homepage Journal

      GREAT in the sense of successful, of course, not in the sense of "good for the people."

      You all are taking note of what he's trying to do, right? He's trying to transform the gamer community's reaction to his lunacy into attacks on his cause, which is, at least in his mind, protecting innocent kids and brave police officers.

      It's just a matter of time before it becomes a real simple equation:

      Disagreeing with Jack Thompson = Helping to kill cops

      At that point, it becomes really easy to pass laws banning the types of videogames that Jack disagrees with. (Then movies, then web sites, maybe even books...)

      Yep, he may be just a lawyer right now, but he clearly has higher intentions in mind, and he's using skills that have been taught very well over the past few years to get elected. It doesn't take too much gray matter to realize that soccer moms outnumber gaming advocates by a pretty wide margin, so who would you rather have included in your base?

      The crying shame of it is that given America's record of picking leaders lately, he'll probably succeed, unless at least a few people not just read Slashdot, but actually act on what they read here.

      Send a message, folks, and get out and vote. And not just for the big elections every four years. Vote in your Congressional elections. Vote in your state elections. Vote for your local councilmembers. Spread the word and get your friend to vote. Don't be afraid to use that fancy gaming machine to write a fickin' letter [vote-smart.org] now and then. What do you say, can we please stop the ensuing madness to come before it gets started?

      Jack wants to protect children and cops. Hey, I do too, I just happen to think he's going about it all wrong. The question in my mind now is: Who will protect the rest of us from Jack?

    • He is actually crazy (Score:5, Interesting)

      by s20451 (410424) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:39PM (#13818707) Journal
      It's not an act -- the guy is actually loony. (Or at least, he has an extremely active imagination.) Here [tripod.com] are some other famous outbursts by him.

      One example: in 1988, he ran against Janet Reno for DA of Dade County:
      Thompson's unique campaign message was that Reno was unfit for the job because, as a closeted lesbian with a drinking problem, she was great candidate for blackmail by the criminal element. Jack never explained why this remained a threat even after he exposed her "secret." Reno cruised at the polls.
      • by FleaPlus (6935) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @02:20PM (#13819096) Journal
        It's not an act -- the guy is actually loony.

        The Wikipedia article [wikipedia.org] on him also includes this curious tidbit:

        Following the Flores case Thompson became prominently involved in First Amendment issues, particularly concerning the possible effects of sexually violent material. The Florida Supreme Court ordered that he undergo psychiatric testing during this campaign, which he successfully passed. He later quipped that this made him one of the few sane lawyers working in the state. The specific reasons that prompted the court to require Thompson to be tested, and on what grounds they compelled him, are unknown.
        • by mo^ (150717) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @02:53PM (#13819429)
          For the sake of reference, in the UK at least, any person working with sexually extreme material (violence, paedophillia, masochism) is usually required by the authorising body to undergo psychiatric checks to ensure no alterior motives exist, or to pre-empt and issues arising.
    • Re:Disbarrment (Score:5, Informative)

      by ValourX (677178) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:47PM (#13818782) Homepage
      On the off chance that someone who is dealing with Jack Thompson reads this, here is the procedure for filing a complaint against a Florida lawyer [floridabar.org].

      I would do it myself, but you have to be in some way involved with the lawyer (client or opponent) to file a complaint, it seems.
  • Eh.... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:02PM (#13818349)
    He also offered $10k to charity if anyone who would develop some ridiculous murder spree game.

    What the fuck does that even mean?!
  • by conner_bw (120497) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:02PM (#13818352) Homepage Journal
    This site:

    http://www.citizensunitednegatingtechnology.org/ [citizensun...nology.org]

    is apparently the result of some elaborate parody described here:

    http://www.gamesindustry.biz/content_page.php?aid= 11598 [gamesindustry.biz]

  • Wow (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:02PM (#13818353)
    I sure hope they cite his ass for making a false report. Publications are not harrassment. Jack Thompson himself started this mess. Does he consider himself guilty of "harassing" the makers of GTA? ...the video game industry? ...game loving Slashdotters everywhere?
  • What about VGCats? (Score:3, Informative)

    by hyu (763773) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:02PM (#13818356)
    Since VGCats were the ones who posted all his contact information, wouldn't it make more sense to go after them? Penny Arcade, who are not really a company lack Jack insists they are, really only recounted a story about Jack and nothing more.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:03PM (#13818357)
    IAAL, and I gotta say, Jack Thompson, YOU SUCK.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:03PM (#13818366)
    "These idiots have been so careless as to post on their www.pennyarcade.com web site what they are doing regarding the harassment of me."

    In the same sentence he's call them idiots he gives the wrong web address.
  • Poetic justice (Score:5, Insightful)

    by H_Fisher (808597) <hvfisherNO@SPAMhotmail.com> on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:05PM (#13818377)
    This is exactly what blowhards like Jack Thompson deserve: to be publicly lampooned for their ridiculous actions.

    What does this man think he's going to accomplish? His vitriolic actions are very unlikely to change anyone's mind about the issue of video game violence. I teach argumentative writing and rhetoric to college students; one of the first things we teach is to know one's audience. Very few people of the ultra-conservative persuasion, however, need to be persuaded - they already are fanatically against video games that contain violence, sex, etc.

    And his tactics - wilfully distorting the truth, branding video game makers as murderers, setting up straw men to attack in his ravings about violent entertainment - well, I doubt anyone who's played the games he's targeting is going to burn their copy of GTA because of the things Thompson is saying.

    Bravo, Penny Arcade, for helping him do what he'd end up doing anyway: alienating anyone who might have listened to a more logical or reasonable argument against game violence, and generating more media attention for Rockstar Games et al. so they will, in turn, sell more games and continue creating popular content. For a lawyer, Thompson seems to have missed that one little maxim: "any press is good press."

    • Re:Poetic justice (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Ieshan (409693) <ieshan@gmaTWAINil.com minus author> on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:15PM (#13818474) Homepage Journal
      "This is exactly what blowhards like Jack Thompson deserve: to be publicly lampooned for their ridiculous actions."

      This is exactly what the constitution guarrentees me, you, and everyone else the right to do. Whether or not they deserve it, it's certainly within my constitutional rights. See Jerry Falwell for relevant details.
      • Jerry Falwell! (Score:4, Interesting)

        by Laebshade (643478) <laebshade@gmail.com> on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @04:46PM (#13820688)
        I took your advice, Ieshan, and looked up Jerry Falwell [wikipedia.org]:
        In November 1983, Larry Flynt's sex magazine Hustler carried a parody of a Campari ad[4], featuring a fake interview with Falwell in which he admits that his "first time" was incest with his mother in an outhouse while drunk. Falwell sued for compensation, alleging invasion of privacy, libel, and intentional infliction of emotional distress. A jury rejected the invasion of privacy and libel claims, holding that the parody could not have reasonably been taken to describe true events, but ruled in favor of Falwell on the emotional distress claim. This was upheld on appeal. Flynt then appealed to the Supreme Court and won a unanimous decision on February 24, 1988 (Hustler Magazine, Inc. et al. v. Jerry Falwell, 485 U.S. 46); the ruling held that public figures cannot evade First Amendment protections by attempting to recover damages based on emotional distress suffered from parodies.
    • by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:24PM (#13818555)
      I don't mean like crazy as an insult crazy, I mean crazy in a medical sense. He really does show many signs of schizophrenia. I mean under the "delusions" sections of the diagnosis he seems ot meet 3 of the 4 to a T:

      1. Paranoid delusions, or delusions of persecution, for example believing that people are "out to get" you, or the thought that people are doing things when there is no external evidence that such things are taking place. 2. Delusions of reference - when things in the environment seem to be directly related to you even though they are not. For example it may seem as if people are talking about you or special personal messages are being communicated to you through the TV, radio, or other media. 3. Somatic Delusions are false beliefs about your body - for example that a terrible physical illness exists or that something foreign is inside or passing through your body. 4. Delusions of grandeur - for example when you believe that you are very special or have special powers or abilities. An example of a grandiouse delusion is thinking you are a famous rock star.

      Well he certianly seems to think people are out to get him, he seems to have delusions of reference as well, and he sure as hell has delusions of grandeur as he seems to think he's a great crusader against evil. He meets various other criteria as well:

      # disorganized thinking # difficulty understanding # difficulty expressing thoughts # difficulty integrating thoughts, feelings and behavior

      Now of course I am not a psychologist (though that is what my degree is in) and even if I were, you cannot diagnose a condition like schizophrenia from things over the Internet, but there's enough irrational behaviour that it certianly gives me cause to wonder. The man may honestly be clinicly crazy, and if that's the case, his rationale for his actions isn't likely to make sense to anyone.

    • This is exactly what blowhards like Jack Thompson deserve: to be publicly lampooned for their ridiculous actions.

      No, this is exactly what he wants. All this 'public lampooning' feeds the beast. There is no bad publicity for this guy. Like that cheesy Merlin mini-seires from 1998, the only way to destroy the evil witch is to FORGET JACK THOMPSON. Turn your backs. Ignore him. If he wasn't controversial, producers wouldn't be seeking him out an putting him on news shows. The game news media attraction to him,

  • by dartmouth05 (540493) * on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:07PM (#13818398)
    I am not a lawyer, but reading the course of communications between Jack Thompson and Penny Arcade, it seems to me that while Penny Arcade is certainly not guilty of criminal harassment, Jack Thompson has violated the Florida Bar's standard of ethics for attorneys. He is using his status as an attorney, as an officer of the court, to threaten/bully private citizens with obviously frivolous suits. (You cannot sue someone for merely e-mailing you, unless it was obscene, a death threat, causing severe emotional distress, etc.!) While not rising to the point of a suspendable offense, I believe a public reprimand from the Bar is appropriate and needed.
    • Cyberstalking (Score:5, Interesting)

      by _KiTA_ (241027) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:22PM (#13818540) Homepage
      Jack uses a Cyberstalker law in Florida to threaten people who email him. Basically he cussess them out then ends it with "and don't email me back", and when they reply, he says they're harrassing him and to stop or he'll call it Cyberstalking.

      Of course, like everything Jacko does, it's never gotten to court. If he actually let it get to a court of law he'd be thrown out forcibly.
      • Re:Cyberstalking (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Em Ellel (523581) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @02:20PM (#13819101)
        Jack uses a Cyberstalker law in Florida to threaten people who email him. Basically he cussess them out then ends it with "and don't email me back", and when they reply, he says they're harrassing him and to stop or he'll call it Cyberstalking.

        So let me get this right, if the people who email him just add "and don't email me back" to end of THEIR initial email, HE cannot legally respond? Sounds like FUN.

        -Em

    • The most likely way that he would receive professional discipline would be as a result of one or more well-reasoned, viable complaints to the bar.

      I believe this [floridabar.org] is the proper form.
  • Superiority (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Gadgetfreak (97865) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:10PM (#13818425)
    It seems that most of his quotes seem to deride the geek community, particularly gamers, as somehow not being as intelligent as he is. I'm not surprised at all that he's gotten this kind of backlash, particularly from a group that typically doesn't like to let an issued a challenge go ignored.

    I'm also surprised that he hasn't been more thoroughly bashed by Penny Arcade. I would have expected some sort of Fruit F*cker episode gone wrong.

  • Hah (Score:4, Funny)

    by slackmaster2000 (820067) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:12PM (#13818453)
    Ok, if GTA is a "cop killing training simulator", then what does that say about the compentency of our police force?

    I remember a spot in GTA 3 where I could hide under an overpass and the cops would all jump off the top to their deaths...this would continue indefinately and I found it rather amusing. And now that I know that this is what would happen in real life, I'm going on a crime spree rampage during which I'll wipe out the town's entire police force by crouching near an overpass.
    • Re:Hah (Score:4, Informative)

      by yoyhed (651244) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:35PM (#13818656)
      Along the same lines, try the hospital parking lot in Staunton Island when you have 5 stars. There's a short fence at the top of the walls, so when the FBI cars come flying into them, they get some serious (hilarious) air before crashing to their deaths in huge piles.
    • Re:Hah (Score:5, Funny)

      by Chris Burke (6130) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @06:23PM (#13821766) Homepage
      Oh yeah, GTA trains you in all kinds of important cop-killing techniques and strategies:

      - To start your rampage, you'll need weapons and armor. Civilians can get shotguns, pistols, kevlar vests, and double-ended dildos (for hand to hand combat, of course...) from their local police station.

      - Stealing a cop car is a great way to start a murder rampage. The best way to do this is to find a car with one cop, and try to open the passenger door. The cop will unlock both doors as he gets out, and leave the keys in the ignition. You can then get in through the passenger door as he runs around the car to catch you, and drive off.

      - If you only commit a minor crime, such as bludgeoning a hooker to death with a double-ended dildo in the middle of the street, the police will forget about you in a few minutes.

      - For more severe crimes, such as beating a police officer to death with a double-ended dildo, you will have to duck into various dark alleys until you find one marked with a star that will cause the police to forget about you.

      - If the heat gets too hot to handle, try spray painting your car so the police won't recognize you. Changing cars won't work, though. The police aren't dumb, you know!

      - If you do lose the police by spraying your car, refrain from immediately bludgeoning one with your dildo, or they'll recognize you. You have to be patient. It can take up to thirty seconds for the police to forget about the dozens of cops you killed.

      - If defeat is inevitable, try to let an on-foot officer catch up to your car so he can arrest you. Despite the trail of destruction behind you and the cop guts stuck in your tire treads, the officer will forgive and forget for a measely $100 bribe. You'll be dropped outside the police station without any of your weapons, so make sure to run back inside and re-arm.
  • by Kirran (923838) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:14PM (#13818465)
    Though I'm sure many following this mess know about it. Jack has also recently recieved a letter from Dr. David Walsh of the National Institute on Media and the Family. In this letter (published on www.gamepolitics.com) Dr. Walsh distances himself and his organization from Jack. His comments tend to really get to the core of what Jack does, "Your commentary has included extreme hyperbole and your tactics have included personally attacking individuals for whom I have a great deal of respect." He's like a kid on a playground. Someone does something he doesn't like and he starts yelling about getting his daddy to get them, because his daddy is a cop or a lawyer. Only he is the lawyer...
  • by Red Flayer (890720) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:20PM (#13818517) Journal
    Quoth the jackass: "I look forward to working with your fine Police Department to shut this little extortion factory down and/or arrest some of its employees."

    Extortion factory? That's not a stated opinion, that's stating a (supposed) fact. Better get your own law team together, because libel's a bitch. I'd like to see how many lawyers it will take to get Jack off.

    • by WormholeFiend (674934) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:36PM (#13818668)
      I saw that too... I hope smokinggun keeps on top of this case, because it's going to be funny to read the court transcripts, when Jack explains how a reneged promise to pay $10K was turned into an extortion scheme.

      Jack to Judge: "Your honor, these youths tried to extort me $10K by donating $10k to a charity in my name!"

      Disbarilarity will ensue.
    • Actually, yeah -

      First, it can be expected to be taken seriously - after all, the guy is a lawyer, and he is filing a complaint with the police. So either he expects that statement to be taken seriously or he's filing a falce claim.

      Second, he's an attorney lodging a complaint - extortion has a very specific legal definition and meaning, it isn't a word an attorny lodging a complaint with the police would be throwing around lightly. He either is actually accusing them of extortion or he is incompetent and is
  • by OgTheBarbarian (778232) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:20PM (#13818520)
    Jack Thomson is trying to SAVE YOU! Ever since the first Lemming exploded the video game industry has been corrupting your minds. You all clearly lack the ability to discern sliding a CG mock-up car through a crowded bus stop in Carmageddon from real world laws and morals. GTA and Bully will spell the end for all the decent God fearing folk of your great nation! Won't someone please think of the children?!!! *SOB!* *WEEP* *MOAN* What's Next?! GTIB?!!! (Grand Theft Investment Banker) GTE?!!!! (Grand Theft Election) What kind of example would that set for the financial and political leaders of the last bastion of freedom and high-holiness in the world?
  • ..i'm immediately reminded of Walter Peck from Ghost Busters. [imdb.com]

    Hopefully when the phoned up the police to ask them to arrest the Penny Arcade guys, the police officer on the phone said "You do your job pencil neck, don't tell me how to do mine!" ;)
  • by 8127972 (73495) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:21PM (#13818531)
    ....then he (or one of his minions) is aware (or will be aware) of this thread here on Slashdot. Seeing what a over-reacting media whore he seems to be, I suspect that this discussion will be referenced on whatever media outlet he ends up on (likely Fox News, if you want to call what they do journalism) to prove that we "nerds" are a bunch of psychos who are addicted to violent video games and our threats to "run down Jack Thompson with an 18-wheeler" as the AC who posted that comment said will be used as proof of that.

    Why not tone down the rhetoric and give him the type of attention he deserves, which is NONE whatsoever?
  • I would be amused (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Council (514577) <rmunroe.gmail@com> on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:21PM (#13818538) Homepage
    I always like to ask right-wingers ranting about games and sex causing social decline, "Yeah! I mean, do you know what's happened to rates of violent youth crime and teen pregancny in the last ten years?" They always answer that they're at unprecedented levels, and then are thrown off when I tell them that they've actually been falling quite steadily. Teen pregancy is even at its lowest rate since we began taking statistics in the '40s, down from the all-time high in 1991.

    What would be really amusing to me is if they discovered, in 20 years, that untold psychological damage to children was done by The Sims. People spending all day running households like gods, torturing and killing families and developing these horribly twisted personalities. I mean, take a horribly violent, depraved movie -- for example, Saw, and ask what game the creators would probably enjoy playing?

    In all seriousness, I think people are both more fragile and more resiliant than they're usually credited with. We handled torturing animals with sticks in the backyard 50 years ago, and we'll handle GTA. And I was going to say something about child-rearing, but then I realized that the last thing anyone wants is more advice on raising kids from a childless twentysomething, so I'll leave it at "the world is probably not coming to an end".
    • by zoomba (227393)
      Just as a bit of a reality check. The most vocal politicians against violent games have been democrats. Liberman and Hillary Clinton being the biggest names behind the recent crusades.

      Funny enough, the attempt to censor violent media has long been the crusade of the democrats. Tipper Gore became pretty well known when she went after violent lyrics in rap music in the 90s.
    • Re:I would be amused (Score:4, Interesting)

      by stlhawkeye (868951) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @04:20PM (#13820322) Homepage Journal
      I always like to ask right-wingers

      Ooo! Ooo! I'm one. I'll try to answer.

      ranting about games and sex causing social decline

      Oh wait. No, I don't buy that line. Uberconservative Republican hacks like Senator Hillary Clinton [dailyillini.com] might want our tax dollars to investigate violence and sex in games, but I'm one conservative who does NOT. LESS governmenting spending on this bullshit.

      "Yeah! I mean, do you know what's happened to rates of violent youth crime and teen pregancny in the last ten years?" They always answer that they're at unprecedented levels

      Hmmm. Maybe I'm NOT conservative, because I don't believe that either. It's the George Bush cronies and conservative right-wing nuts like Senator Clinton, Howard Dean, and John Kerry [factcheck.org] who have recently been found playing up false numbers for activities that we generally frown upon as being measures of moral decay in our society. No, Republicans, screw you, I'm not buying into that line.

      and then are thrown off when I tell them that they've actually been falling quite steadily.

      Amen brother. And what's been happening for the last 10-15 years? Unprecedented prosperity, even when you consider the recession a few years ago. Crime rates almost always drop when people are making more money.

      Teen pregancy is even at its lowest rate since we began taking statistics in the '40s, down from the all-time high in 1991.

      Go go gadget condoms!

      What would be really amusing to me is if they discovered, in 20 years, that untold psychological damage to children was done by The Sims. People spending all day running households like gods, torturing and killing families and developing these horribly twisted personalities. I mean, take a horribly violent, depraved movie -- for example, Saw, and ask what game the creators would probably enjoy playing?

      uhhh.. The Sims 2 is actually on the list of morally reprehensible games that Jack is crusading against. Seriously.

  • by Faust7 (314817) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:27PM (#13818585) Homepage
    You all may want to check out the ChatterBox [chatterboxgameshow.com] interview with Gabe and Tycho that was done this past Sunday. Gabe talks a little about his recent conversations with Jack Thompson. Apparently the first thing Jack said after calling Gabe up and establishing his identity was:

    "Let me tell you something, idiot."

    This utter professionalism is well-reflected in the text of his fax to the Seattle police.

    "There are a bunch of computer geeks out there who think..."
    "These idiots have been so careless as to..."

    I can only imagine what some of his non-game-related correspondence is like.

    Also, this has probably been posted before, but here it is again: the ChatterBox interview [chatterboxgameshow.com] with Thompson. Lunacy thrown into the sharpest relief.
  • by shadowmatter (734276) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:41PM (#13818734)
    ... the crazier Jack Thompson seems to be. Apparently he ran against Janet Reno for the Office of Dade County State Attorney back in 88. He made some pretty ridiculous claims, including that Janet Reno uses call girls [apfn.org]. He's also gotten in an e-mail flamewar with a 14-year old [croqaudile.com], and his quips make the youngster look like Socrates by comparison.

    I hope if the mainstream media begins to give Jack Thompson air time, since he is fast becoming a "celebrity", these past deeds are brought up. To ignore them does not accurately portray his real character.

    - shadowmatter
  • by Gruneun (261463) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:42PM (#13818738)
    for Jack Thompson to release a book and benefit from all this free publicity.

    Oh, wait a second [amazon.com].
  • It is worth reading the email that Jacko sent just before filing his complaint:

    "This story is completely false and defamatory. Take it down or else." [penny-arcade.com]

    And Tycho's reaction to it:

    "It is critical to establish that this letter isn't anything to worry about. We've been sent worse by better."

  • by NYTrojan (682560) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:51PM (#13818831)
    The florida bar association

    Center for Professionalism:

    Carl J. Zahner
    czahner@flabar.org
    Terri Anderson
    tanderso@flabar.org
    Paula Stephenson
    psteph@flabar.org
    from http://www.floridabar.org/TFB/TFBOrgan.nsf/54E05CD 1C9D5551885256B61000B58D2/AE11AE39767C4F8685256B74 00523C2E?OpenDocument [floridabar.org]
  • by tyates (869064) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:53PM (#13818850) Homepage
    This is how lawyers "solve problems". They sue people. Another way to solve the problem of kids and uberviolent video games would be to make an online web page with a list for parents so that they can click on a game and see how violent it is, and decide whether they want to buy it for their kids. Then you publicize that web site so that parents know its out there. That's how a reasonable and intelligent person would solve the problem. But when all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail, and when all you have is a law degree, everything looks like an actionable lawsuit. So he types up a brief in his underwear while he's watching an episode of "Boston Legal", and he thinks he's making a difference.
  • If only... (Score:3, Informative)

    by wynterwynd (265580) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:53PM (#13818854)
    Gosh, if only there was some way for us to channel our annoyance into something that could undercut the very base of Mr. Thompson's power. If only there was a governing body monitoring the practice of law in Florida that we could contact and ask that they look into his legal harassment of satirists. If only their contact information was this:

    Florida Bar

    Complaints - Phone
    - Attorney Consumer Assistance Program
    - (850) 561-5600 + 1 + 5673
    - ACAPflabar.org

    If only there were a ton of witnesses to his wanton bullying who were willing to corroborate these claims and perhaps get his license to practice law suspended.

    Well, I can dream can't I? =)
  • by Anita Coney (648748) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @01:54PM (#13818858) Homepage
    It appears he's even launched a DNS attack against Penny Arcade's server! He's brought it to its knees. That bastard!
  • From PA's site (Score:5, Interesting)

    by jayhawk88 (160512) <jayhawk88@gmail.com> on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @02:08PM (#13818992)
    "I guess Jay Leno is going to be there (at the ESA convention, where their friend Robert will be presenting the $10k check)".

    Dear God and Jesus,

    My name is Jayhawk88, but then you already know that. I know I haven't been the best person in the world, and I don't go to church very much, but if you could see to it that this Jack Thompson v. PA feud receives national media attention, I promise to be a good Christian from now on. I will give to the needy, love my fellow man, and praise your name if you will give me Jerry Holkins debating Jack Thompson on The O'Reilly Factor.
  • by xant (99438) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @03:37PM (#13819872) Homepage
    Jack Thompson proposes a game in which a father kills innocent people related in some way to gaming, as revenge for his son's death. Someone actually made that game as a mod--and this is irony, if you missed it--to Grand Theft Auto.

    If JT wants anyone to play his game, and get vicarious revenge on the game industry, they have to purchase GTA to play it.

    Well, I don't own a copy yet. Guess I'll go get one.

    BTW, if your reply to this post defines "irony" for me, I'll fucking stab you. Damn, video games do make you violent!
  • Where's the game? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by mcheu (646116) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @05:09PM (#13820969)
    The guy article says this guy welched on a verbal contract where he offered to give $10K to charity (still waiting apparently) if someone developed a game involving pissing on people and killing game store clerks. Apparently the game was made, because Penny Arcade stepped up and paid off the charity reward, which is part of this "harrassment".

    So what ever happened to the game?
  • by Lew Payne (592648) on Tuesday October 18, 2005 @06:50PM (#13822048) Journal
    Many years ago, we (Meow Media, Inc - parent company of Persian Kitty's Adult Links) were sued [firstamendmentcenter.org] by Jack Thompson in what later became a landmark sixth circuit [uscourts.gov] court of appeals first amendment case. Granted, we were vindicated after two years of legal expenses... but it still cost us several hundred thousand dollars in attorney fees, expert witness fees, and appeals fees (which required a second set of attorneys).

    While Jack Thompson's lawsuit was grinding its way through the court of appeals, another copy-cat attorney by the name of John DeCamp decided to sue us (Meow Media) for the Columbine shootings [freedomforum.org]!

    Soon, every attorney with expensive car payments was jumping on the bandwagon, in [what I perceive as] an effort to collect a "nusiance" settlement from us and other defendants. In fact, this practice became so common and popular that PBS FrontLine ran a feature story [pbs.org] on our collective plights.

    Fortunately, when the Court of Appeals ruled in our favor on the Paducah lawsuit (and reaffirmed this when they rejected the appeal for reconsideration), the other defendants were quick to drop their lawsuits, else face an action sounding in tort. However, that too required attorney fees and retainers for each case, in each particular venue.

    For those of you who have not yet gone through lengthy and cumbersome litigation... there is not much you can do to recover the costs involved with defending yourself from most tort litigation. Sure, we could turn around and sue the families of the deceased children who were killed by the shooter... but that's not exactly good publicity, nor does it make for a sympathetic jury.

    So here I sit today, a few hundred thousand dollars poorer, watching history repeat itself.

When in doubt, mumble; when in trouble, delegate; when in charge, ponder. -- James H. Boren

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