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Thursday, April 9, 2009

See, This Is What I'm Talking About (Re: Kotaku)

This isn't necessarily on Kotaku, but rather the commenters and culture they've created.

(By the way, if you're asking why I still go there when it makes me mad, it's because they have the most up-to-date news, and a lot of times they'll have neat features. For instance, they just had a feature about Montessori schools and Spore. It was really interesting.)

First, about a week ago, Nielsen released some numbers relating to usage statistics for the major consoles. In this group, the XBox 360 finally beat the Wii for overall usage. Here's a sampling of the comments:
"Somehow, this isn't surprising."
"It's not really that surprising that the Wii isn't played more than it is. I'm not a soldier in this ridiculous fanboy war that seems to be going on, but I honestly can't remember the last time I actually fired up the Wii."
"These stats don't really surprise me. Largest install user base and least amount of play time per user. A business success for Nintendo to be sure, but this brings of definitive issues as to the console's longevity."
"No surprise here. Own all three but one of them is in the basement storage. Next generation I will smarten up, ignore the hype, and skip Nintendo."
OK. Fair enough. I understand that there is a large group of people who don't like Nintendo.

However, today, it was revealed that the graph was wrong! It was accidentally mislabeled by Nielsen, and Nintendo actually has the highest usage of all next-gen consoles! Well, certainly, those commenters who were working off of a faulty assumption will apologize for their statements.
"To me it looks like the 360 is in second for 12 of the 13 months, and the wii is second only in the last month. Unless I'm looking at it wrong."
"It was always going to be wrong. The people who sign up to have these devices installed are not representative of the target market, most of the time, if ever. And so taking anything away from the findings becomes ridiculously subjective, in a way that makes the findings almost useless for anything other than college research papers and drawing up weak conclusions."
"In my head I was calling BS as I looked at the chart. Just doesn't make sense on so many levels. Thanks for pointing this out and reconfirming my feelings. We're wasting too much time on charts and not enough on video games!"
Oh, OK. So when the statistics show something that fits with your point of view, then the statistics are infallible. However, when they show that the console you don't like is on top, then the statistics are a pack of lies. Got it.

I especially like the first commenter. People were almost giddy when the first chart showed that the 360 was in first place, if only for one month. They were hailing it as a turnaround that would finally topple Nintendo once and for all. Now, it's only one month and of absolutely no importance whatsoever.

Meanwhile, I sit here at ↓C, trying to maintain a balanced viewpoint of all gaming as being equally important, even the stuff I don't necessarily like.