We Wrestle With the Messy Politics of 'The Division 2' on Today's Podcast

#1

Just over nine months ago, Ubisoft caught some heat when Terry Spier (creative director at Red Storm Entertainment, one of the studios working on The Division 2) said that the The Division team was "definitely not making any political statements" with the game. It felt incongruous not only with the game's basic pitch—"lawlessness and instability threaten our society, and rumours of a coup in the Capitol are only amplifying the chaos," reads the game's website—but also with the messaging that Spier himself deployed in that very interview.


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://waypoint.vice.com/en_us/article/nexy78/we-wrestle-with-the-messy-politics-of-the-division-2-on-todays-podcast
#2

Should we merge the ‘Division 2 Impressions?’ thread with this? It seems like all the points in that thread would be expressed her easily.

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#3

Oh no. Waypoint was my only refuge from the “it’s called football” argument

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#4

I’m a bit confused as to why you’d get a stick. Don’t almost all cars just do paddles now?

Edit: I don’t know how you’d make a Columbo game, but please give me a Columbo game.

#5

Probably not, though division is probably the meat of this discussion, other games discussed here would get completely flattened out, and I would love to talk about Baba or the occupation in here when I get through the pod

#6

If youre playing something like Forza with a wide variety of cars from different eras there’s value in having both, for sure.

#7

image

[image description: a sepia tone image of clouds, like an inspirational quote picture, with the words printed as if a poem, “Sunday Morning, make some toast, make some tea, that’s where I want, a butter and a jelly” Austin Walker, Editor-in-Chief at Waypoint.]

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#8

Yea I didn’t really think about having both. I wonder how deep this hole could go? How many levers could I get for my farming simulator? I have a bad feeling I’m going to have to relearn how to drive stick in a few months.

#9

Oh, man! Even with all of the caveats, Rob’s description sold me really hard on The Occupation. Wasn’t even on my radar.

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#10

I can’t answer you with any specific examples, but I can almost guarantee that if theres a game that could use some kind of wild, highly specific controller someone has made that wild, highly specific controller.

#11

CW: weight, diets, eating disorders

I haven’t been able to listen to most of this podcast yet because the opening made me angry enough that I could not focus on anything else anymore. Could we please not have jokes about how much you “miss carbs”? Could we please get some content warnings when dieting and weight loss in these sports keeps coming up?

Diet culture is killing people, it is causing and has caused enormous harm to a lot of people, it directly leads to the near-universal fatphobia this culture has, and these sorts of jokes directly uphold and perpetuate it.

I’m sure Danielle is very careful in her dieting, I’m sure she doesn’t personally hold fatphobic beliefs or intentionally make moral judgements on what bodies are acceptable, she’s been good at caveating this stuff in the past. But it hurts to, in a space I think of as otherwise safe, hear this shit come up with no warning. It hurts to hear it talked about uncritically. And it especially hurts to hear fucking jokes casually thrown out there that, whatever anyone might intend, are very much about placing a value judgement on foods based on their role in dieting.

This might seem like I’m making a big deal out of something small, and to a degree that’s true – in the grand scheme, think is far from the worst thing I’ll see or hear most days. But that’s really the point: I hear this shit every day, and just like anything else it builds and builds so that every little thing carried the weight of everything before it. And this time hurts more because this has otherwise been such a welcoming and safe space, so when this blindspot comes up it feels like the floor drops out.

Anyway, I had to get that out, I’m sorry if it’s aggressive. I want to be clear here though, I still love this site and this team, I’m still going to listen to the rest of this podcast. I only feel capable of writing all this in the first place because of the work that’s been done already.

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#12

Austin, lemme blow your mind, don’t buy expensive rugs/mats, just buy rubber caster wheels to replace the acrylic ones most office chairs come with. They are far cheaper, a set of ULine can be had for about $15.

#13

The conversation around food actually centered on how it was fantastic that F1 drivers no longer have to feel pressured to starve themselves to keep their weight down.

I agree that the diet culture has an extremely detrimental effect on our society (I’m personally in recovery from Anorexia Nervosa) but I think your criticism of the podcast in this instance is unwarranted. Danielle was not promoting a low-carb diet - if anything, you could argue that the crew were promoting eating whatever they wanted to.

I hope this does not come off as offensive or dismissive, I just think that being overly-sensitive can be just as detrimental to both the recovery of the individual and to making changes in the way that society treats the subject,

Food is good and so is Waypoint. :heart:

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#14

A word of warning about Kids YouTube for anyone with children like Patrick, it’s a bizarre nightmare of procedurally generated content mashed together with little regard for the sometimes terrifying videos it results in. More info on that here (content warning for some genuinely gross and mildly shocking videos being used as examples):

I’m not sure if much has changed on this, but I’d advise caution with letting a kid go unsupervised on the app.

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#15

Yeah I was thinking “isn’t the Youtube Kids app and its algorithms fucked just in a different way to regular Youtube?”

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#16

I’m much more upset about the missing carbs joke than the rest, but I still think a content warning should have been there for the rest. I couldn’t hear the part you’re describing because I was too busy thinking about what came, without warning, before.

I know Danielle did not mean it in the way it came across, I know she does not hold beliefs about the morality of food or bodies, I know that she in fact works hard to fight her biases and prevent harm from being done with her words and actions. But no one can erase the context in which these jokes and conversations happen, and the context we live in means that this joke causes harm.

If finding ways to ignore these sorts of things have helped your recovery, I am genuinely happy for you. It has not helped me, and it has not helped anyone in my family. It has, rather, contributed to relapse, exacerbated other mental illnesses, evoked past traumas, and provided cover for others to harass and shame us.

And like I said, I know this is a relatively small thing, that it is more the previously accumulated bullshit that made this so upsetting. But it still hurt, it still made the podcast harder to listen to, it was still a fuckup, and it is not unwarranted to ask that people continue to do better. Waypoint has gotten better about this stuff, but they still sometimes have blindspots with it.

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#17

all of the ‘footballs’ used to have their own name- american football was ‘gridiron football’ soccer was ‘association football’ and rugby was… well ‘rugby football.’

then you also have canadian/australian rules, but those (like american) are more properly modifications of gridiron. its not really important (outside of people who pretend people that refer to association as ‘soccer’ are wrong, even though its actually a more accurate way of describing the sport then just saying ‘football’ for most of the english speaking word) but it is a neat look at history and how language and culture evolves over time.

and yes, its real weird to see parents posting every bit of information about their kids online. a scant few years ago, their was a trope about parents showing their kids baby pictures to a prospective date and it was portrayed as incredibly embarrassing. now many people don’t bat at an eye at posting their kids entire life online. i have an infant, who is in daycare and when we were doing the paperwork i brought up that we wont be posting pictures of her online and we would like them to try not to post pictures of her on their social media accounts (i get that it will likely happen in group shots or whatever, i asked that they didn’t tag her if it happened though.) they looked at me like i had grown a second head right there in front of them. it literally never occurred to them (and presumably any of the other parents there) that even if you ignore the privacy issues of those platforms, maybe putting a kids entire life on the internet without them getting any say in it is ethically dubious

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#18

Hey, I wanted to ask a sincere question if you don’t mind? I guess CW for diet?.

I’m currently on a diet if you could call it that, but I’ve at least made the conscious decision to cut carbs. Coincidentally, in work people had ordered pizza and I said “I miss carbs” in full sincerity. Is there a problem with this? I don’t want to upset anybody in work without realising I’ve even misstepped.

I hope this makes sense, and doesn’t cause any grief.

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#19

The one saving thing I think is they added a control feature recently so your child can only view videos from accounts you have approved.

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#20

So I mean, I think the answer is that it’s complicated. The biggest problem with this joke in the podcast is that the podcast (and waypoint as a whole) is a platform, with power associated, and therefore there is I think a higher standard of responsibility than the average person going about their day has. In the situation you described, I think it comes down to how well you know the people present, whether they know about your diet and your reasons for going on it are. If I had to make some sort of call, I’d say odds are no one was badly hurt or offended – the reason it’s called diet culture after all is that it’s pervasive and most people aren’t conscious of it – but that going forward just try to be conscious of your language and your context. To think about how you may be reinforcing biases or trends you don’t want to.