The ESA And NRA Lobby Compared
Games Industry International has posted a fascinating glimpse into the nature of the political lobbying efforts of several major industries. In particular, one finding jumped out as a surprise. At $4.83 million, the ESA outspent the NRA's $2.9 million in lobbying efforts. However, a closer look reveals that the NRA dwarfs the ESA in other political expenditures, including the NRA's $19.77 million in outside spending, which includes "money spent on TV spots, mass mailings, robocalls, and other communications." In the same period of the last three election cycles, the ESA reported no such outside spending.
The article also offers a comparative look at how other organizations fit into the equation, including Google's $18.22 million lobby, Philip Morris' $9.83 million lobby, and the Motion Picture Association of America's $1.95 million lobby. Check out the full article for context and interviews on the subject, which helps to shed light on a part of the gaming business that's often ignored by its many fans and players.
[Source: Games Industry International]
No matter where you fall on the broad spectrum of opinions about guns, video games, and violence, it's worth recognizing that no political action (or inaction) occurs within a vacuum. Millions of dollars of lobbying efforts by the ESA are made to protect game makers and publishers from potential damage to their business every year. The nature of the American legislative system means that won't change anytime soon.