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Jack Thompson

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Game controllers are guns in disguise!
I fought the law
and the law won

Pseudolaw
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To convolute
and distort

Jack Thompson is "humanity's answer to the sarcoptes parasite"[1](or rather, was) a lawyer infamous for his agenda against video games, actively intending to create moral panic.

Thompson's legal career[edit]

Thompson blames video games as the primary cause of violence and crime among young people.[note 1] Like others of his ilk, he doesn't care about the facts, and he shamelessly takes advantage of tragedy to further his agenda. He became notorious for popping up as a news network "guest speaker" in the aftermath of school shootings to claim that the shooter practiced killing with violent video games.[2] He has even accused the U.S. Department of Defense of colluding with video game producers.[3]

He was disbarred by the Florida Supreme Court, effective October 2008, for "professional misconduct." This ended a long-running feud between Jack Thompson and the Florida Bar Association going back to 1992 (at one point he accused them of having a secular humanist agenda). What actually got him disbarred, however, is filing frivolous lawsuits and defaming various people who opposed him, even accusing them of being involved with child pornography. Having gotten his just desserts, he then claimed to be the victim.[4]

What, exactly, he is infamous for among various circles could fill an entire article by itself, but his exploits include mass-mailing thousands of game industry employees and threatening to press harassment charges against them when they responded, flooding the judge's bench with over a hundred pages of gay pornography as an illogical and crazy attempted bribe during a case, and other unintentionally hilarious shenanigans. Most of his opponents were deeply saddened to hear that this talented amateur comedian has been forbidden from performing.

Grand Theft Auto lawsuits[edit]

During the early 2000s, Jack Thompson litigated in a series of failed lawsuits against Rockstar Games over games in the Grand Theft Auto series:

  • On 20 October 2003, the families of the victims killed by teens, William and Josh Buckner filed a US$246 million lawsuit against the producers.[5] The lawsuit was later dismissed as a violation of the First Amendment.[6]
  • In February 2005, a lawsuit was brought upon the producers and distributors claiming the video game caused a teenager to shoot and kill three members of Alabama's police force.[7] The lawsuit was later dismissed.
  • In September 2006, a lawsuit was brought on behalf of the families of Cody Posey's victims, blaming his obsessive playing of Grand Theft Auto: Vice City.[8]

Penny Arcade antics[edit]

Jack Thompson has had a couple interactions with the gaming webcomic Penny Arcade, to hilarious results.

Did we mention that Jack Thompson got himself disbarred on Gabe's birthday as a birthday present to Gabe?Do You Believe That?

External links[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. This is why the popularity of Tetris has led to more people killing others by dropping oddly shaped blocks on them.

References[edit]