Sony Computer Entertainment’s UK boss Ray Maguire believes the games industry must work harder to change negative perceptions.
Writing exclusively for MCV, Maguire has reflected on the recent Department of Health advert which targeted gaming as a dangerously sedentary pursuit.
He says that rather than being outraged, the industry must accept a large number of people hold a downbeat view of gaming: “The industry has changed more in the past five years than it did in the previous 15, but the public’s image of this industry has hardly changed at all.
These days our products address a much wider marketplace. But what strategy do we really have when it comes to good news? This is a crucial question for all of us and very much for our trade body ELSPA.”
Maguire believes that the industry has many positives to promote, such as this week’s formal opening of the Paddington Academy, co-funded with the Government.
“We have put £2.2m into the Academy, which effectively got the Government to build it.
“We have also shown at the BAFTAs that we are a grown-up industry focused on art and creativity. We have many positive messages, such as commercial significance to the UK economy, widening links with education and products that encourage social skills, even fitness. But we are not getting the message across well enough.”
Maguire hopes that the industry’s trade body ELSPA can help to co-ordinate positive messaging about the industry going forward.
“We must reach out to the public and the media with our positive actions. And we must get closer to the Government, assisting them with their tasks and becoming partners.”