Hello! As a side note, I’m actually very happy someone finally brought this up.. I was going to write a post as to why I do that but my response to this will suffice!
To begin, I fully understand your perspective and I think it’s quite normal to come into this genre of “art/photography” with said perspective.
But let me bring up an example of an instance within real world photography that I’m sure everyone within the practice can relate to..
Let’s say I am out walking around with my camera and find a very interestingly placed water bottle. Envisioning the photograph, I fiddle around the subject to try and “capture” what I was envisioning. For the sake of my example, we’ll say I got a decent shot of the water bottle and I went on my way. Now, that water bottle certainly wasn’t my “property” and anything else seen in the photograph certainly isn’t mine either. So later that night I upload the photograph onto Flickr and respectfully request no one to reuse it without my permission because it is rightfully my photograph. Now how is this venture of mine any different? I took the shot, therefore the photograph is mine. Sure the content within isn’t mine..but I took the time and effort to capture a piece of time and eternalize it within a photograph. Whether it be in a “digital” reality or reality it self.. I think that practice within photography is universal.
Though these are video games, the principle still works if your honest about your work. What I mean by honesty is by giving the developers credit for everything SEEN in the photograph. I hold a right to the photograph itself, the shot I took.. but I do not hold credit for what you see in the photograph.
Now.. everyone will have differing opinions on this, just like you do :]. In-game photography certainly hasn’t been around the block long and debates on whether or not it can be truly justified as “photography” will surely arise in the future if more people take up the genre as an artform. None the less, I see what I do as photography.. because what I do in my real world work, the principles and discipline that is used, is used in my in-game photography as well (and then some).
In the end, sssquid.. I’m very pleased to know you enjoy my blog! I am also extremely appreciative of the critisicm you have portrayed in your comment, thank you!