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Games need to find their voice

UK games industry encouraged to enable paradigm shift in order to dominate entertainment space

Thursday 11 August 2005/... One of the architects of UKTV today called on the computer and video games industry to reposition itself if it wants to become the primary entertainment medium of the 21st century.

Adam Singer, member of the Ofcom Content Group and Group CEO of MCPS-PRS Alliance, was keynote speaker at the Edinburgh Interactive Entertainment Festival (jointly owned by industry bodies ELSPA and TIGA). In front of an audience of senior industry professionals and opinion formers, Singer outlined his thoughts on how gaming could move forward to replace television as the mass medium, encompassing the concepts of edcuation, entertainment and information.

Singer said: "Games are going through a struggle to find a voice. Film took its time to develop a language. Film started its life in slot machine at the end of piers. The growth of game and their containment in arcades, on platforms or cartridges is analogist to the early box containment of films. Broadband is to games what projection was to movies."

To date, the games industry has positioned itself as the "teenage rebel" of the entertainment milieu. In order to move into mainstream acceptance, games have to become more than just a form of entertainment. As Singer suggests: "The definition of a medium is to be able to communicate three things; stories, truths and eroticism. If you can't do all three things, then you're not a medium."

Roger Bennett, director general, ELSPA, said: "Over time games will become as integral in the classroom as they are in the home, for education as well as entertainment. The games industry is already a strong force in the cultural and economic mix in the UK and we believe that Adam's vision for the future is not that far off."

EDITORS NOTES

About ELSPA - http://www.elspa.com

ELSPA (The Entertainment & Leisure Software Publishers Association) was founded in 1989 to establish a specific and collective identity for the computer and video games industry. Membership includes almost all companies concerned with the publishing and distribution of interactive leisure software in the UK.

ELSPA's activities include: Official Chart and Industry Reports, Anti-Piracy UK and EU, PR and Communication, Events. More information on all these activities can be found at http://www.elspa.com.

The UK Interactive Leisure Software Industry - Facts & Figures from ELSPA/Screen Digest/Chart-Track:

  • The UK is a world centre for games development.
  • In 2004, UK sales of video games, other leisure software products and games consoles topped £2 billion, for the third year running.
  • Over 22,000 people are employed in the UK leisure software sector.

About Adam Singer

Adam Singer created and launched the 24-hour coverage of Parliament in the UK and launched and run the Discovery Channel in the UK and Europe. Adam was also one of the architects of UKTV (the Flextech joint venture with the BBC). Formerly COO of John Malone's TCI International, and CEO of Telewest plc, he has also been a non-executive director of the Scottish Media Group. He currently sits on the Ofcom Content Board & joined the MCPS-PRS Alliance as Group CEO in February 2005.

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GamesIndustry International is the world's leading games industry website, incorporating GamesIndustry.biz and IndustryGamers.com.

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