Video Game Warfare

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When the 9/11 tragedy took place, a few observers noted the fact that the terrorist attackers managed to use our own technology against us. It appears that they’re continuing to rely on that strategy, but this time with video games.

 

The U.S Armed Forces have used video games for a few years now as a means for recruiting—and to a lesser extent, training—prospective military personnel. In particular, the Army employs first-person-shooter games, in which the player assumes the role of a soldier in a high-intensity combat situation.

 

Well, according to a new report from Reuters, a handful of militant Islamic groups based in the Middle East have used their more tech-savvy personnel to alter these games. After the changes, the players’ characters’ in the games are transformed into urban guerrillas who are matched up against U.S. troops. The games—which have ads posted on some of these radical organizations’ Web sites—are used for the same reasons the Army uses them: as a recruiting and training tool.

 

Unfortunately, there isn’t much anyone can do about this. Thousands upon thousands of people modify games around the world, and the industry is essentially powerless to stop them, unless they try to mass-produce, market and sell the altered versions. Besides, call me crazy, but I just don’t think Al Qaeda would show up in court to refute charges of copyright infringement.

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