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New York State Testing Emergency Alerts Over Gaming Networks 212

An anonymous reader writes "Gamers are used to confronting invading terrorists, nuclear attacks, and natural calamities—in virtual form. But those living in New York State could soon receive warnings about real emergencies through their favorite video console. State authorities are testing a plan that would see the Emergency Management Office issue alerts over online gaming networks in addition to regular channels."
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New York State Testing Emergency Alerts Over Gaming Networks

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  • by iamacat ( 583406 ) on Thursday November 19, 2009 @04:59PM (#30163214)

    Games already contain situations that resemble real emergencies and commonly contain simulated alerts where some government official type tells you what is happening. There a possibility of the alert being ignored because people think it's just part of the game. But far worse is children getting scared or taking unsafe actions to evade perceived hazards because they really believe there is a nuclear attack in progress or that mom and dad turned into blood-sucking zombies. After all they have been taught that they can be alerted to an emergency through a game.

  • by Eggplant62 ( 120514 ) on Thursday November 19, 2009 @04:59PM (#30163216)

    I don't know about anyone else, but sometimes I go into my game and decide to say, "Go away, government, go away news, go away famiily, go away anyone and anything that isn't in the game." I escape. I shut down for a couple hours and just veg. And I don't want to be interrupted. If that means I miss some emergency alert that may save my life, well, that's life, ain't it?

  • by Amouth ( 879122 ) on Thursday November 19, 2009 @05:19PM (#30163650)

    You joke - in NC it is attempted 1st degree murder to attempt suicide.

    I remember a guy who attempted suicide - he ate the end of a .22 - failed at killing him self BUT managed to blow most of his brain stem off and became a quadriplegic. He was later convicted of attempted 1st degree murder and sent to jail (no i don't remember for how long).

  • Re:Dumb idea (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Rockoon ( 1252108 ) on Thursday November 19, 2009 @05:28PM (#30163824)
    True story from 2005 [westportnow.com]

    Connecticut emergency management officials have apologized for an erroneous message sent to state broadcasters today saying an evacuation of the state had been ordered. State emergency management officials believe someone pressed the wrong button. Instead of running a test of the emergency alert system, midday television viewers and radio listeners were told that the state was being evacuated ........... State police said they received no calls related to the erroneous alert.

  • Re:Fucking moronic (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Rockoon ( 1252108 ) on Thursday November 19, 2009 @05:41PM (#30164142)
    I posted this elsewhere but it deserves some more exposure.

    In 2005 the State of Connecticut issued an alert on their emergency system, which interrupted both midday television and radio broadcasts. The alert was a Statewide evacuation order.

    Pretty serious shit must be afoot, right?

    State police later reported that NOBODY called them to find out what was going on, and obviously people didn't evacuate Connecticut.

    The emergency system is stupid. It doesnt matter what it says on there.. if I look outside and don't directly witness something akin to Armageddon, I'm not leaving the house. If something akin to Armageddon IS heppening, then quite frankly I don'y need an alert system to tell me about it.
  • by mortonda ( 5175 ) on Friday November 20, 2009 @12:30AM (#30168064)

    It seems every time a natural disaster (or any other disaster) hits, there are always people that complain that they didn't know about it or something like that...

    How about when there was a tornado warning around here and just as I was updating the radar that would tell me approximately where it is, the Emergency Broadcast System cut in on the cable TV and dropped my Internet like a brick. Thanks for nothing, EBS.

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