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This is a question Political Correctness Gone Mad

Freddy Woo writes: "I once worked on an animation to help highlight the issues homeless people face in winter. The client was happy with the work, then a note came back that the ethnic mix of the characters were wrong. These were cartoon characters. They weren't meant to be ethnically anything, but we were forced to make one of them brown, at the cost of about 10k to the charity. This is how your donations are spent. Wisely as you can see."

How has PC affected you? (Please add your own tales - not five-year-old news stories cut-and-pasted from other websites)

(, Thu 22 Nov 2007, 10:20)
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Typo of doom

A few years ago, when I was about six months into a new job, I was participating in a presentation remotely. We’d been commissioned by a rather large educational company to create a web site that allowed children to play games against each other. This is fairly common these days but at the time it wasn’t so much.

It was early in the development stage, and we’d knocked together a 2D beat-em-up, mortal kombat style game. The kids could simply fight against each other using the arrow keys and space bar to punch etc. It was both graphically and technically simple, but had been a bit of a mare to put it together.

Through the design phase the client had specified that they would prefer one character to be of a ‘Caucasian’ origin and the other of an ‘African American’ origin, in order to appeal to the various minority groups and appear welcoming. The intention was to have a variety of characters upon completion, but if the client wanted it for the prototype; who are we to argue? We settled upon a stocky, punkish sort of fellow with a green Mohawk, and as the other character a tall, black gangster kind of dude.

We’d also inserted a chat screen below the main action, where the two kids fighting could communicate with each other, just for banter etc.

All was going well with the presentation, and my boss, on-site with the client, was talking them through it before allowing one of the big honchos to play a little game against myself, whom was safely nestled back in our office, hundreds of miles away.

We began and I noticed the movements of the client’s character were a bit erratic, and I initially assumed it may have been a lag issue, until I recognized he kept moving away from me. So obviously I figured he was confused which character was his, so I attempted to help using the chat screen, and sending the following helpful message.

“I’m the punk, you’re the bigger guy”.

Except, during the creation of the peripheral device known as the keyboard, some intelligent bigot had decided to place the B key right next to the N key.

My quick follow up of…

*bigger

…convinced no one that I wasn’t a racist. :(

I can only imagine what my boss’s face must have looked like…
(, Thu 22 Nov 2007, 14:40, closed)

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