Want To Play Halo 3? See You At Church!

from the master-chief-loves-you dept

Long heralded as the savior for lagging Xbox 360 sales, Halo 3 has done much to live up to the hype, reaching nearly $300 million in sales in its first week out. Some churches may have contributed to that figure since they are throwing Halo parties to encourage teens to join their ranks of parishioners. This practice is drawing the concern of many; opponents to the idea question if allying the church with a violent video game is in the church's best interests. Church organizers argue that they need to stay relevant in order to attract new churchgoers, especially young teenage boys. Perhaps the critics would be quieted if the church groups played the religious themed video games made by Left Behind Games. But, considering the awful reviews for the religious games, it is likely that nobody would show up. Bingo, anyone?


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    madmike, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 1:44pm

    Excellent Strategy

    Can anyone really argue with any organization that changes its business strategy to stay current with the latest trends to attract a younger consumer base?

    It is just a great business model, whether you are selling music or saving souls.

     

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  2.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 1:59pm

    Priests are always looking for new ways to get some young meat. This should be illegal. These con-artist are using tax free money to buy video games. That's bullshit.

     

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  3.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 2:04pm

    Seriously, shut up. Not only are you just stereotyping, you're acting like catholicism is the only religion out there.

     

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  4.  
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    Lawrence D'Oliveiro, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 2:04pm

    Makes sense?

    Think of it as like putting health insurance advertising on cigarette packets. Sure, it's helping you reach a wider audience. But is it an audience you want to attract?

     

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  5.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 2:06pm

    Re: Makes sense?

    Of course it is the right audience. You don't preach to the choir, you preach to the souls that need saving.

     

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  6.  
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    Joshua, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 2:11pm

    I think it's hilarious

    They are bringing people to church by inviting them to come play a game where the main enemy is a religion.

     

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  7.  
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    justin, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 2:19pm

    Hey

    ur game is the best and i just love it i wish i had as many of those games as possible to give to my friends

     

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  8.  
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    Devil's Advocate, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 2:44pm

    Re: Excellent Strategy

    You mean wether you're trying to get people to cough up money for music or for the saving of their souls.

    It really says a lot about the church if it has to resort to stupid gimmicks to get people to attend. Perhaps it's the message that needs updating to fit today's youth and not the already over-zealous missionary efforts?

     

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  9.  
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    MIKE, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 2:55pm

    THE CHURCH BECOMING MORE LIKE THE WORLD.

    THE CHURCH HAS LOST A LOT OF IT'S POWER IN THE WORLD TODAY BECAUSE IT'S BECOMING MORE LIKE THE WORLD EVERY DAY. THE BIBLE SAYS TO " COME OUT FROM AMONG THEM" AND TO "BE IN THIS WORLD BUT NOT OF THIS WORLD". INSTEAD OF THE CHURCH TRYING TO BE MORE LIKE THE WORLD WE NEED TO GET BACK TO THE BASICS OF PREACHING THE REALITY OF HEAVEN AND HELL AND THAT THERE WILL BE A JUDGEMENT DAY WHEN WE ALL WILL STAND BEFORE JESUS AND GIVE AN ACCOUNT OF WHAT WE HAVE DONE.

     

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  10.  
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    Bob, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 3:05pm

    Mike, doesn't the Bible also mention..

    Love? Do you think that typing in ALL CAPS is the way to get your message across to such a diverse audience on the internet?

    I'm not saying I disagree with what you are implying, only the way you are saying it. You make it sound like the mad-man on the corner screaming "THE WORLD IS DOOMED". No one hears him, not because they can't, but because of his delivery. Speak with Love on your heart, and you'll reach many more then by just screaming at them.

    Blessings Friend.

     

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  11.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 3:05pm

    Well, they'll just account playing Halo 3 in the house of the Lord. Maybe God likes Halo too. Free ticket, right there.

     

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  12.  
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    me, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 3:15pm

    Re: Excellent Strategy

    Someone can always argue, it's just a question of whether that argument makes any sense or not.

    Also, it would be freaking awesome if my church had a Halo party, usually we just play Mario Kart.

     

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  13.  
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    Killer_Tofu (profile), Oct 9th, 2007 @ 3:18pm

    Re #10

    When that day comes and I have to stand in front of Jeebus and tell him what I've done, I will point to all the video games I beat.
    Then he will give me a thumbs up, a high five, and let me pass.
    Then we will play some FPS together and call each other a hacker when one of us does too well for too long.
    It'll be great.
    Hear that Jesus? I challenge you!!

     

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  14.  
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    Matt Smith, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 3:25pm

    Re: Makes sense?

    I'm pretty sure when it comes to religion or cigarettes, your trying to appeal to EVERY audience. I don't see a problem with it. It depends on the angle that your looking at it from really... I understand why a church would do this, I mean, look at the situation from a step back, they probably think kids who play violent video games are in need of spiritual guidance. Now the church isn't threatening death on anyone who doesn't come play, it's still a persons choice if they want to or not, so nobody is doing anything wrong here.

     

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  15.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 3:26pm

    Religious fanatics will do whatever it takes to get converts. Hypocricy is a small price to pay to keep your support base strong. Not a lot different to politicians really.

     

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  16.  
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    Bob, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 3:37pm

    If a church has to use video games to attract church-goers, then the religion it preaches probably sucks.

     

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  17.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 4:18pm

    Why do religious fanatics love to shout at people with all caps?

    Why would I listen to any message from somebody so ignorant and inconsiderate?

     

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  18.  
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    Doc, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 4:28pm

    Re: THE CHURCH BECOMING MORE LIKE THE WORLD.

    Would Jesus use ALL CAPS? Probably not...

     

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  19.  
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    Doc, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 4:31pm

    Like the great evangelist of the 19th century, D. L. Moody said, "The Church should me more fun than the corner bar." Playing Halo3 or bumper pool or other games is just fine and dandy for youth groups... all fire and brimstone makes for zero attendance.
    Really, I'm a christian, and play Halo, Guitar Hero, Half-Life... I'm still devout, pray 30 minutes a day, read my bible, lead a small group bible study... I'm mature enough to know the difference between electrons and reality.

    Rock on,
    Doc

     

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  20.  
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    Kevin, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 4:48pm

    Personally, I'm still waiting for them to try to "save my soul" by inviting me to a porno watching party. That would definitely increase attendance! Heck, they could even get strippers to work the party and hand out Chick tracts, and then afterwards they could try to convert them too! Just don't forget the hookers.

    Now that's what I call a good time!

     

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  21.  
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    Kevin, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 4:52pm

    Re:

    I'm mature enough to know the difference between electrons and reality.

    Most people would argue that electrons are reality. Without them our atoms fall apart, and then where does that leave us? With no reality, that's where. A lack of a sound understanding of science is what got us into that whole "Intelligent Design" mess...

     

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  22.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 4:55pm

    Re: THE CHURCH BECOMING MORE LIKE THE WORLD.

    Quoting the bible to make a religious point, nice try but useless. Heaven? Hell? You still believe in that? "Lets brainwash thee as we" is kinda outdated. Religion is dead, get used to it. Maybe it's a stereotype that priests and boys.. you know, but you have to agree they're not helping their case by pulling stunts like that.

    Hell am I paying church taxes for them to get satellite TV? Better internet than me? Cause that's what this thing called church does with our money... why not use it to lure in young kids? Wait I thought that was illegal... Guess religion is above law.

     

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  23.  
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    spaghettihead, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 5:09pm

    I came out of a fundamentalist background, so I hear the old tapes being played about coming out from the world, but I also attend a wonderfully relevant church now with my kids and I enjoy how they make their services approachable.

    I don't go to church for the message. I don't even go to save myself from Hell or get myself 'in' with God. But - I'll go for punch, pie and a little first person shooter action.

     

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  24.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 5:17pm

    lol religion. lol jesus. lol.

     

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  25.  
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    raize221, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 5:55pm

    I, like many people, believe in God, however I have never supported the idea of trying to convert others to a religion other than their own. Though I have to say I actually support this idea as long as it is not used for the sole reason to convert.

    I used to attend youth group through my local church regularly (I've since out-grown the high school crowd) and we used to get together and have Halo parties just as well. The idea wasn't so much about what we were playing during a church-related activity, but rather that we were all doing something we liked to do with people we could openly discus our beliefs with.

    The point is that while it's not quite the same as screaming battle cries and profanities at your close friends during a deathmatch, but rather about taking a part in an activity you enjoy while getting to know people withe similar beliefs. Sure, churches could use it as a tactic to attract a younger crowd, and I'm positive that many are. But for the most part, I'd like to believe that their actually interested in providing a safe and stress-free place for teens to do something fun.

    Either way, I don't think it can hurt... The most common reason I've heard for trying drugs is that, "There's nothing better to do."

     

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  26.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 6:17pm

    Giving teens a safe place to do fun things with others is one thing, great idea, but brainwashing the young to get them into your cult is entirely another matter .....

     

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  27.  
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    Karl from Port Angeles WA, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 6:35pm

    Re: Re: THE CHURCH BECOMING MORE LIKE THE WORLD.

    I just want to know, does your state have a tax that you pay that goes to the church? Churches get most of their budget from tithes. Most church youth groups Ive been to have used such things like LAN parties or bowling nights to take time and hang out, and if you want to bring a friend to share the time with then thats cool. I dont know here in the northwest we arent as in your face convert to my religion or DIAF as other places in the country so I cant speak against you. Yes as a Christian I dont like people that are very pushy about your salvation, does that mean I dont think we should share the gospel? No.

     

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  28.  
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    common_sense, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 6:58pm

    mad mike said it right, "It is just a great business model, whether you are selling music or saving souls."



    the problem is, most churches are like businesses and membership clubs nowdays. that's hardly spiritual and exposes the true motive of simply getting numbers into their organization. the end does not justify the means.

     

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  29.  
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    jmedem, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 6:59pm

    Re: Re: Re: THE CHURCH BECOMING MORE LIKE THE WORL

    hello halo rocks

     

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  30.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 7:25pm

    "the problem is, most churches are like businesses and membership clubs nowdays. that's hardly spiritual and exposes the true motive of simply getting numbers into their organization. the end does not justify the means."

    This is the whole point of all cults. Get the marks in, get control, get money, feed them a lot of hocus pocus to con them into thinking they will be happier, the leaders get rich and powerful. Everyone is happy.

     

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  31.  
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    PT, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 10:40pm

    Re: Re: Excellent Strategy

    Changing the message might help. But that could also upset established religious dogma which would never get anywhere except create confusion and more splintered groups.

    It also doesn't help that the Church is tied so closely to the media circus surrounding Intelligent Design and Creationism. It's not doing the Church any favors to convince youths to join their congregation if those supporters continue to espouse ridiculous ideas that the earth is 6,000 years old (with pseudo scientific evidence to back them) and evolution is seriously flawed (without even understand what evolution is).

    I dare say, maybe the days of religion in the West are slowly coming to an end?

     

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  32.  
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    PT, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 10:45pm

    Re: I think it's hilarious

    All they see is what the media see's. Flashy game, a lot of explosions, and a lot of youth's drooling to play it. It would be a miracle, indeed, if these church leaders knew what the game's underlying message was really about.

     

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  33.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 11:07pm

    "I dare say, maybe the days of religion in the West are slowly coming to an end?"

    Unfortunately not, I suspect. Way too many people still insist on being told what to think. The masses, it would seem, still prefer fear and superstition to science and knowledge.

     

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  34.  
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    Chris, Oct 10th, 2007 @ 9:59am

    "Way too many people still insist on being told what to think."
    And you knowledge isn't based on authority? Almost all knowledge is based off of the authority of another, scientist base their knowledge off of other scientist; Christians base their knowledge off of God.

     

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  35.  
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    Brian, Oct 10th, 2007 @ 12:34pm

    Re: Re #10

    How many Achievement Points do you get for beating Jesus at Halo3? I'll bet it's alot...

     

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  36.  
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    common_sense, Oct 10th, 2007 @ 6:15pm

    Re: cults

    "This is the whole point of all cults. Get the marks in, get control, get money, feed them a lot of hocus pocus to con them into thinking they will be happier, the leaders get rich and powerful. Everyone is happy."

    I agree. I know of a few 'churches' or spiritual groups that meet in homes or other smaller venues that do not engage in membership drives, fundraising, or other modes of furthering a 'business'. They're strictly limited to the sharing of beliefs and providing support to each other. Anyone reading the New Testament of the Bible can clearly see this was the example performed there. The modern church at large doesn't resemble it in the least.

     

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  37.  
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    PT, Oct 10th, 2007 @ 10:58pm

    Re:

    Knowledge based off of a foundation of evidence and data isn't open to ambiguity, unlike basing knowledge off a religion.

     

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  38.  
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    MIKE, Oct 11th, 2007 @ 4:08am

    Re: Mike, doesn't the Bible also mention..

    sorry, i tend to type a lot in caps. i was'nt yelling, just trying to get a point across. thanks!

     

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  39.  
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    mike, Oct 11th, 2007 @ 4:10am

    Re: Re: THE CHURCH BECOMING MORE LIKE THE WORLD.

    sorry. i tend to type in all caps. i was'nt yelling, just trying to get a point across.

     

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  40.  
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    mike, Oct 11th, 2007 @ 4:19am

    Re: Re: THE CHURCH BECOMING MORE LIKE THE WORLD.

    yes, i do beleive it. yes, your right. religion is dead, but Jesus is alive and well (and coming soon). nothing i can say will make you believe that,but i hope and pray He will open your eyes to the truth before it's too late. call me a "crazy Jesus freak" if you like. on judgement day we will see who is right, but i'm not going to miss out on heaven because i would rather live in sin

     

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  41.  
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    mike, Oct 11th, 2007 @ 4:28am

    Re: Re: Re: THE CHURCH BECOMING MORE LIKE THE WORL

    no, my state does not have a tax to support the churches. bowling nights, youth softball is ok because it's outside the church house. Jesus said "my house shall be called a house of prayer"- not a house of rock concerts and halo partys. don't get me wrong-i like video games. just the house of God is not the place for them. and no, i do'nt mean being pushy. i mean "speak the truth in love" and "the truth shall set them free. i've seen too many people turned away by pushy "christians".
    thank you.

     

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  42.  
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    mike, Oct 11th, 2007 @ 4:33am

    enough said

    i've said what i had to say. some will agree, some not. it has been that way since creation. hopefully i've said something that will help someone. goodby and my prayers be with you.

     

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  43.  
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    Hippie Jay, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 9:13am

    Games

    In the later stage of social development it is good for kids to interact; it shouldn't matter if its either a video game, watching a movie, or playing outside.

     

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  44.  
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    Lucas Ammons, Dec 10th, 2007 @ 8:02pm

    Re: Video Games In Church

    I am a avid video game player. I own over 20 games. (the halo series included) it took me awhile to stop think about the message Bungie was trying to sell along with the game. The message is: Beware False Prophets! The Covenant a alliance alien races has launched a lesser jihad; a struggle where material weapons are used, this war is agianst all humanity which the covenant see as infidels. The covenant believe that a network of infidels space-borne super weapons known as halos are in fact they way their gods (aka the forerunners) achieved a higher state of conscienceness by activating the rings. This misguided religious furver has blinded the Covenant religionus leaders, the prophet hierarchs of Truth, Mercy, and Regret to the weapons real purpose to cleanse the galaxy of all life large enough to sustain a parasitic lifeform known as the flood.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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