Since dumbasses with no medical knowledge at all keep spreading that the quarantine situation or COVID-19 itself are just another Evil Plot™ from governments all around the world to gain power and remove citizen rights, let me try to explain why this idea is completely idiotic:
For those who think COVID-19 itself is a “hoax” of sorts:
The specific symptoms and necessary care for COVID-19 patients make it an extremely poor option for a hoax: the cost to treat diseases is not always proportional to its mortality rate, and this is one such case – the care that needs to be provided to COVID-19 patients is extremely expensive, despite the (relatively) low mortality rate, mostly due to the pulmonary symptoms. Most countries have free universal healthcare, a few having nearly 100% coverage, and the current pandemy has been consuming a lot of public resources, while the coverage of any actions by governments has made it hard for corrupt politicians to embezzle public funds – none of this is beneficial to governments and if they wanted a “made-up pandemy”, there are countless diseases and conditions that could be used for fearmongering without the cons of COVID-19.
Most governments also couldn’t use this situation in beneficial ways like suddenly raising taxes or forcing public servants to work for free due to these measures being extremely unpopular and facing resistance and the fact that most people are not working/being paid.
Additionally the current government lost popularity in most countries heavily affected by the pandemy.
For the conspiracy theorists who think pharmaceutical companies spread the virus or blew the number of cases out of proportion to sell drugs and make a profit: if that was the case, new and miraculous patented drugs would have been introduced. Instead, one of the drugs that’s been getting the most attention and research is hydroxychloroquine, a very old and cheap drug (specially out of the US) that tropical countries and their public healthcare systems already had in stock.
For those who think quarantines are pointless or that just “sick people” should isolate at all:
Our previous idea that assymptomatic cases would rarely ever spread the virus has been proven wrong. People who don’t sneeze or cough at all can spread the disease, even without dumb shit like licking subway poles or spitting on goods at the market.
The proportion of cases that are completely assymptomatic is likely to be far higher than what we initially thought, and the vast majority of cases have mild and unspecific symptoms – there isn’t any easy and reliable way to say who is infected or not, so the idea that “only the sick” should quarantine does not work. Across the world, specially in countries with less dire situations, many are still only testing for COVID-19 in highly symptomatic patients and those who had direct contact with suspicious/confirmed cases – despite community transmission being confirmed in these places.
In economic terms this quarantine has been detrimental to governments and nearly all companies, big or small. The idea that it would be inforced without need by the people in power makes no sense.
Finally, if your way of thinking is simply that the mortality rate isn’t that scary so we should just end the quarantine for young people and “hope for the best”, I just have no words for you, other than suggesting you reevaluate your life.
“How many of the poor and sick must die?” is always one of capitalism’s calculations, but even to pose the question, “How many of the rich and powerful must die?” takes some work. That means thinking it, repeating it, writing it on walls. It means implicit threats, rent strikes, and the destruction of Amazon and Google’s neighborhood surveillance systems. It means sabotage, theft, leaking, doxing. Socially distanced group demonstrations are more trouble than they’re worth, and you can’t canvas door to door in a pandemic. But those aren’t the only tools we have, and the systems are exceptionally fragile right now. It’s time to put them on the defensive.
I’ve seen some news reports with doctors changing their minds about using a face mask if you aren’t sick. It’s not so much about the minimal protection a lone face mask can provide in a public space, and more about the fact that many covid-19 symptoms are asymptomatic. It’s more about acting as if you have the virus because you actually can have it and not know it. Also face masks provide a public visual reminder of our need to social distance. For these reasons if you have one or can make a face mask for yourself, you should use it to mainly protect other people and help set a standard.
How much current corona situation has impacted game development?
We’re in somewhat uncharted territory here, but there’s the “short term” answer (which is what’s happening today) and the “long term” answer (that is speculation at this point). I’ll try to cover my general thoughts on those two answers.
As somebody working in the industry, I’m seeing most major game publishers and developer studios make the switch to employees working from home. I, coworkers, friends, industry contacts, etc. have all working from home for a few weeks now. So many people are working from home that we’re really stress testing all of the corporate network infrastructure, finding all of the issues with the system and generally exploring some new territory with it (especially trying to get a new hire set up during quarantine/shelter in place orders). I really hope that we’re able to leverage this to support more remote development in the industry.
From the player-facing perspective, we’re seeing pretty big spikes in engagement. There’s a lot more people playing now than there were a month ago. I suspect this is because of a combination of factors - professional sports and television shows have stopped production, movies and theaters are all shut down, people can’t go out to socialize and are stuck at home, and so on. As a result, they’re increasingly switching to video games for entertainment. This has been good for game publishers, some of whom (like mine) have actually leaned into it by spending more on marketing to encourage players to try (or return) to our games.
The biggest looming specter is the long-term economic damage that the virus will do. The game industry isn’t an island - even though people are playing more games today, we’re starting to see some pretty enormous long-term economic effects from the pandemic. Here in the US, we had an unemployment rate of 3.5% (about 5.8 million people total) in February. Within the last three weeks, approximately ten million more people have filed for unemployment, putting us on par with the 2008 recession’s worst unemployment numbers. This is absolutely terrifying, because the crisis still isn’t over. There’s going to be a lot of long-term economic damage.
This is going to have ripple effects in every industry, including ours - people who aren’t working are much less likely to buy video games, DLC, etc. They tend to avoid buying expensive new game consoles like the PS5 and Xbsx, which means that expected game sales on those platforms is likely going to dip as well. New experimental games will likely get cancelled and we’ll probably see the bigger publishers circle the wagons and stick with more conservative, safe bets. Hiring will probably slow down. We saw this during the financial crisis of 2008 and we’ll probably see it again in the upcoming years.
This is because late capitalism has always been a death cult. The tiny-minded incompetents in charge cannot handle a problem that can’t be fixed simply by sacrificing poor, vulnerable, and otherwise expendable individuals. Faced with a crisis they can’t solve with violence, they dithered and whined and wasted time that can and will be counted in corpses. There has been no vision, because these men never imagined the future beyond the image of themselves on top of the human heap, cast in gold. For weeks, the speeches from podiums have suggested that a certain amount of brutal death is a reasonable price for other people to pay to protect the current financial system. The airwaves have been full of spineless right-wing zealots so focused on putting the win in social Darwinism that they keep accidentally saying the quiet bit out loud.
I’m getting lots of messages and comments and stuff telling me I need to talk to a doctor. I know. I talk to my doctor every few days, to update him. He’s given me lots of breathing medications and machines to keep this under control and I know what symptoms, if not alleviated by the machines, indicate that I should go to the ER. It’s okay. I’m not an idiot. I talk to my doctor.
The situation in the Philippines is at a fever pitch. It isn’t the Coronavirus that’ll kill us, it’s the government.
Here’s the situation.
The Philippines, especially the crowded Metro Manila, was victim to an incompetent government that badly mishandled the pandemic. There was a lockdown that FORCED COUNTLESS WORKERS TO WALK HOME FOR UP TO 8 HOURS BECAUSE DUTERTE SET UP MILITARY CHECKPOINTS BEFORE EVEN ADDRESSING THE MEDICAL ISSUES. This included the elderly. Their hometowns literally had to send trucks to bring them back, and these were the lucky ones.
There was a protest in Sitio San Roque because the people HAD NO FOOD and were ASKING THE GOVERNMENT FOR FOOD and there was EXTREME POLICE RETALIATION
Duterte said that “front liners should be grateful they died for a cause” and said for violators of Quarantine to be shot dead
Competent and attentive mayor Vico Sotto was sanctioned by the presidential admin that has so far done little to nothing in response to this crisis beyond granting Duterte emergency powers and an excess of billions of pesos which he has planned around but failed to disseminate with urgency. Most consider it the admin being angry that Vico Sotto’s competence makes them look incompetent in comparison, which makes them angry. It’s also important to note that his actions they consider a violation of rules (re: transportation of citizens) happened prior to the rule being placed, which means he can’t be retroactively punished for it anyway.
And Senator Koko Pimentel, who violated protocols DESPITE JUMPING THE LINE TO TEST FOR THE VIRUS, TESTING POSITIVE FOR CORONAVIRUS, entered a HOSPITAL without TELLING STAFF HE TESTED POSITIVE and infected the hospital, because he wanted to be with his wife for her delivery. And he WAS NOT PUNISHED FOR IT, despite the government’s insistence on harshly punishing violators, which has so far only extended to the poor.
And as a more positive aside, the Vice President, who THE DUTERTE ADMIN HAS BEEN ATTEMPTING BUT FAILING TO PUSH OUT FOR YEARS, has been providing the needs of the people as Duterte has failed to, through free shuttles for front liners as well as massive donations for much needed equipment.
And they’re trying to target her the way they’re targeting Vico Sotto.
We just expect systems to work when we’re in positions of privilege. And it reminds me of an argument I had a really long time ago with one of my friends, who had a couple of kids and was like absolutely running herself ragged, running errands.
…She was describing like, ‘and then I work all day and then I take these kids and I teach them all these things. And then they go to bed and then I run out and get groceries and I do all these errands.’
I was like, ‘wait, why don’t you take your kids out ever to run errands?’
And she said, ‘well, I don’t think that would be fair to them.’
And I was like, ‘okay. But like what you’re describing as a world in which, like, Micah will wake up every morning, open their fridge, and imagine that milk appeared there overnight.’ …
That’s sort of how I felt when I didn’t realize we’re all – in terms of groceries and resources and supplies – we’re all Micah. We’re just imagining our milk appears in the fridge. The wheel turns and all our sustenance is provided. And other people knew that that wasn’t true. But it can be very surprising.
We don’t we don’t have to come to a place where we go: “It was worth it.”
I think that’s just so sick that we get forced into a place where we think we have to go, “Well, it was worth it for this result.” Well, you know, are we going to tell [someone who] lost a child…[that] we want to get them to a place where they go, “well, it was worth it.” …I mean, what a sick thing to put someone in the position to do.
No, we don’t have to come to a place where we ever say that it was worth it. But we can come to a place where we go, God made it matter. God made it matter.
Why is the US government bidding against its own states to get PPE and ventilators? So Trump can redirect the scarce resources to the states that voted for him.
…MA Governor Charlie Baker to Trump: “We took seriously the push you made not to rely on the stockpile. I got to tell you we lost to the feds …I’ve got a feeling that if somebody has a chance to sell to you or to me, I’m going to lose every one of those.”
“Price is always a component,” Trump said. “Maybe that’s why you lost to the feds.”…