Reports Of Xbox One's Handling Of Used Games Mobilizes Playstation Fans
from the opportunity-is-knocking dept
We recently discussed the somewhat mishandled release announcement for Microsoft's new gaming machine, the Xbox One. While a big part of the problem was a lack of firm answers to gamers' questions, it's clear that something is going to change in how the new Xbox handles used games. The rumors vary, but we know that the used games market that has existed for the past several decades is going to be altered to come under stricter control of Microsoft directly. Reception of this news has been cold, but it isn't just Xbox fans reacting.
No, the ultimate effect of Microsoft's actions may end up being a highly mobilized Playstation fandom and a massive opportunity for Sony if they want to grab it. You see, famousmortimer of the popular gaming message board, NeoGAF, decided to bring the wants of the customer to Sony's attention through a simple Twitter hashtag, #PS4NoDRM.
I can say, for sure, that the past week's PR nightmare for MS has not been lost on Sony and they, in fact, do have a used game 'solution' working and have been going back and forth for months on whether to use it. This past week is pushing them strongly into "Yeah, let's not use that."He then suggests that readers politely tweet several high-ranking Sony executives, indicating that they want a free and open used game market, and including the aforementioned hashtag. While he later went on to say that he didn't expect any of this to become much of a movement, that's exactly what it became. Not only did something like 14,000 tweets with the hashtag go out across Twitter, it has become big enough that even the mainstream press is reporting on it.
The campaign has reached dozens of news sites including NBC News. Even now, people are tweeting messages with the hashtag in hopes of getting Sony's attention.Several Sony executives have replied with encouraging tweets, suggesting that, at the very least, they're seriously listening. And listen they should, because that isn't just the sound of gamers typing on their keyboards ringing over the Twitterverse. It's opportunity. Real opportunity.
"It's much larger than I ever imagined," Dodd told me this afternoon. "Honestly thought the post would go about 2 pages." As of right now, the NeoGAF thread has 105 pages and 467,690 pageviews.
Imagine what happens if Sony issues an official response to this campaign. Imagine further that this response acknowledges the fans, thanks them for all of their interest, and firmly states that, on its system, the used game market will go on unhindered. Let's say that a company that has an unfortunate reputation on consumer rights flips the script completely in the gaming arena and positions itself as the consumer's choice compared to Microsoft. What would the market's reaction be? It would be huge.
Finally, if you believe that used games don't harm game sales, but rather spur them along by creating added value, then this should represent the easiest no-lose choice in the gaming business's history. Now let's see if Sony hears opportunity knocking through those corporate walls.