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Submitted by dedicatedtogamers 1707d ago | article

Could NPD’s Gag Order Be a Sign of Bigger Problems?

Perhaps it is the end of an era, but Mr. Michael Pachter will no longer be sharing NPD's sales data with the gaming media, per NPD's request. However, the lack of Pachter's indispensable commentary on monthly NPD numbers is not the only thing we're seeing with NPD's announcement. Dedicated to Gamers asks some poignant questions as to whether or not this is a sign of bigger problems within the gaming industry. (Industry, Michael Pachter, Tag Invalid)

RememberThe357  +   1707d ago
The less we argue over pathetic sales numbers the better.

But I think this is much more about the NPD itself not the entire industry.

@below: I don't think we can argue that the industry is headed down a bit, but we've seen slumps in the industry and the NPD reports didn't seem to have any effect, positive or negative. But your right we just don't know and this could be about stock holder reaction as well.
#1 (Edited 1707d ago ) | Agree(17) | Disagree(3) | Report | Reply
dedicatedtogamers  +   1707d ago
Agreed. It is far more likely that this is a sign of things going on within NPD than problems with the entire industry, but the possibility remains. Even according to NPD, the industry is starting to decline, so who knows?
gamingdroid  +   1706d ago
I actually think NPD is forced to hold back their numbers, because why would the companies involved want their investors spooked and scared away.

Especially for companies that aren't doing so well don't want that information easily accessible. Why shoot yourself in the foot?!
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TruthBTold  +   1706d ago
I also believe this is about NPD not being able to provide exact figures since they don't track all sales for each platform but just from a few retailers. This means they are not a source that should be publicizing sales data when only the manufactures can provide their exact sales to retailers. They are affecting the way investors see these companies so I completely understand why they would not be posting them any longer. Perhaps sales are a lttle lower than what sony, nintendo and ms would like but the economy hasn't picked up yet. I hope next generation we get less expensive games and less expensive consoles. They should really just upgrade the technology they now have and bring out cheaper consoles so more gamers can buy, not much to learn from the tech for game designers so less time invested in creating games. No new format for sony at least. We just need improvements on what we have and bring less expensive games. Don't make 50 million dollar games. Instead we need to see more of the improvements we see of franchises which cost way less to make than new franchises requiring new engines. Gaming should be less expensive for more people to jump in and not worry about the price.
Iroquois_Pliskin  +   1707d ago
to be honest, i never really cared about Pachter or NPD.
showtimefolks  +   1707d ago
the only sale numbers i trust are those from publishers
also the other thing the only thing i care about sale numbers for is to know whether a game i really like and want a sequel for sold or not

not like these fanboys who sleep by these numbers

NPD doesn't even cover every retailer in the USA and there is no credible source for world wide sales unless sony,ms or nintendo themself give us the actual numbers

also its sad when xbox360 fanboys are happy when a great ps3 game sell less and same the other way around

alan wake deserves better sales if any ps3 owner is happy it didn't sell he has no life


its sad when crysis 2 or killzone 3 sells less while homefront sells a million fast we can talk with our wallets but a lot of us choose to buy crap we should not
jetlian  +   1707d ago
the only one without a demo. crysis 2 is also just coming out
Denethor_II  +   1706d ago
What a gay impassioned little speech, jog on.
evrfighter  +   1707d ago
A shame. Those 300+ comment npd articles were always great reads. The insults, the denial, the number battles.

They will be missed. The end of an era
RememberThe357  +   1706d ago
Haha too true. I remember getting caught up in those every once in a while and just kicking my self after for just falling into the swamp of nonsense and trying to pull some reason out of it.

I remember the days when I first got to N4G with Breakfast and POG and all those other trolls. it was comedy gold.
Anon1974  +   1707d ago
NPD tracks pretty much every industry imaginable. The idea that they're clamming up about the Games industry because the industry is slowing down is ridiculous. They get paid whether the news is good or bad. It's a research and marketing firm. And the idea the article touches on about NPD always being happy to release their numbers when the industry was good - there's some revisionist history right there as well. NPD group has always charged big bucks for the real, in depth reports. They've often discussed cutting off the media from the scraps they dole out - and finally they did.

This is how these firms work. There's hundreds of research firms out there that compile reports and then sell their information without a word of it ever being leaked to the public. The brokerage industry is built on analyst reports that most of the public never get a chance to see, and when they do see that information it's almost always whitewashed. I'm speaking from a decade of experience here.

NPD made their decision and just like stock brokers and fund managers, when you're privy to this type of information, you pay for it with the understanding that you're going to use this for your clients and not redistribute this information by blabbing it to whoever will listen.

And comparing NPD figures to VGChartz is laughable. VGChartz is run by a fanboy who was kicked off Neogaf forums for spamming them up with his guesstimates. Then he made a site. NPD one commented that in North America, their sample size of the Videogame Market was sitting at over 60%. VGChartz, they estimated, had about a 2% sample size then they guessed the rest and made adjustments when real numbers where made available.

I think this article misses the mark simply because they don't understand exactly what the NPD group is. Video game tracking is just one small part of what they do.
HolyOrangeCows  +   1706d ago
ROFL. NPD protects its information (that it SELLS) from being given away for free by Hackter, and a bunch of nonsensical speculation spills out about the game industry.

"Everyone knows which of the big three is responsible for the gag order. I'll give you a hint: It's the one that's at the bottom each month"
You nutty fanboys....

Priorities change. The NPD was giving that info away for free for a long time. It's a very small amount of info compared to everything that they research. It's likely that they just decided to allow it, but changed their mind. Pachter might have been giving away the info closer and closer to the time it releases, too, and that could have annoyed them; if he was giving the info away once it became old, it might not be that big of a deal to them.
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dedicatedtogamers  +   1706d ago
If it was as simple as NPD "protecting the information it sells", they would have asked Pachter to stop sharing it YEARS ago, wouldn't you think?

No, something else is going on, whether sinister or simple. It's not just a matter of Pachter giving away their numbers for free.
saumer  +   1706d ago
Organizations do go through changes in operating procedure.
Vherostar  +   1706d ago
I think its a good thing as 90% of the sales articles on here are NPD and most people think its the whole world when its just America so at least we can concentrate on articles covering the whole world instead of 1 country more often?
Balt  +   1707d ago
Sales talk leads to less sales overall. Face it and deal with it. It does. It's like a bad review -- it can lead to bad sales. Well, word of slow sales can ressult in worse and worse sales. This isn't the golden era of gaming. Gamers today are shallow and fickle people. They want the best and will accept nothing but -- Only, the best to them is the game with the most sales.

*cough* COD *cough*
Vherostar  +   1706d ago
Thats it I mean thats why MS like to toot there own trumpet about NPD sales every month but NEVER talk about worldwide sales where they been beat nearly every week of the year by Nintendo and Sony. As a lot of people don't realise NPD is only America and buy a console thinking it's selling so high they gonna have somebody to play on it at least not realising it's gonna be an American most likely meaning LAGGG as I used to find out all the time playing gears.. It was great playing against my UK buddies never had any lag not even a little bit but put me against a bunch of Americans? I was rubber band man! It wasn't my connection as my lovely 50 meg fibre optic eats XBL for breakfast.
Loner  +   1707d ago
Greenberg will still give us 360 numbers

@ below

Nah both sales and game news
I contribute more to the site than you
Loner submissions - 36
Qeuffy b submissions - 0
#3 (Edited 1707d ago ) | Agree(1) | Disagree(14) | Report | Reply
Queefy_B  +   1707d ago
Greenberg will still give us 360 numbers,

Yea because i bet thats all you would be on n4g for loner is for sales news,certainly not game news.
#3.1 (Edited 1707d ago ) | Agree(9) | Disagree(5) | Report | Reply
KotC  +   1707d ago
Then why do you comment in "100%" of "all" sales related news? Just wondering because I clicked on your comment history and you spend all your bubbles talking about sales and you're one of the first to post in every one.
Kon  +   1707d ago
KotC just pwned you, sorry.
Queefy_B   1707d ago | Not a reply | show | Replies(1)
KotC  +   1707d ago
Everyone knows which of the big three is responsible for the gag order. I'll give you a hint: It's the one that's at the bottom each month. This way they can save face and make up whatever numbers they want.
theunleashed64  +   1707d ago
how about some proof that sony had something to do with this? or are you going to pull another lie out of your ass? *gets ready for the spinning*.
Dart89  +   1707d ago
He's just mad cuz he can't play many exclusives this year so he has to play numbers xDDD.
ct03  +   1706d ago
There's no proof, but it does make sense.
Have you read how much spin Sony has had to put into their PR over the last few months?
With no really positive numbers to report, they instead babbled on about the Playstation ecosystem and whatnot.
Parapraxis  +   1707d ago
LMAO, what a retarded concept

Yes, it must have been the almighty Sony who forced a foreign company to withhold their own personal data.

take off the tinfoil hat bro
lodossrage  +   1707d ago
you must be really dense if you believe that nonsense.

Why would Sony (the ones you imply) be responsible for the gag order? They've let it be shown for what four years of the ps3 getting outsold in the U.S. Why would they all of a sudden have a gag order be invoked now?

If anything, they probably don't even care considering they're outselling the 360 worldwide.
#4.3 (Edited 1707d ago ) | Agree(7) | Disagree(1) | Report | Reply
MrBeatdown  +   1707d ago

Sony isn't telling NPD to withhold numbers just because some idiot fanboys like to make a big deal about them being in last place. Those that give a crap about the numbers yet are too stupid to realize that NPD numbers don't paint the whole picture are part of a very small minority that Sony doesn't need to waste their time on.
insomnium2  +   1707d ago
You of all the people here really have the nerve to judge Queefy_B? He was replying to Loner right? Do you know what he is? Have you seen his comments? Do you know what you are based on this comment alone? Un-freaking-believable....smh. ..
lee_ten  +   1706d ago
Masterchef2007  +   1706d ago
Who cares if sony is in 3rd place? Its the games that matter and we have many AAA exclusives to play this year so its nothing to be ashamed of.

So i am happy to own a console thats in 3rd place if it gives me the best games to play, most features and free multiplayer its more than worth it. You should buy a PS3 and Jump In.
#4.6 (Edited 1706d ago ) | Agree(0) | Disagree(0) | Report | Reply
morganfell  +   1706d ago
By his logic Microsoft is able to gag the majority of the world.

For me personally the bigger issue in the article is the referencing of Pachter as providing "indispensable commentary"
Stealth20k  +   1707d ago
thank god the fanboy shit is overwith
Pedobear Rocks  +   1707d ago
I don't think this has much to do with the companies themselves (though I'm sure they would rather release the infomation themselves as they see fit) but more to do with the likes of VaGChartz, Pachter and other analysts coat-tailing off of NPD numbers each month to try and make themselves look legit.

You want pay NPD big bucks for those and you keep your mouth shut...that is how it should be.

Then we can just worry about Annual reports to give the real story and talk about games in the meantime.
dedicatedtogamers  +   1707d ago
And then there's the issue as to whether Pachter is really an analyst at all or just a shill. I don't know of professional analysts in any industry who give their analysis to the public for free.
hazelamy  +   1706d ago
don't give a stuff about the npd numbers personally, but anything that gets pachter to shut his cakehole is all right by me. :)
Masterchef2007  +   1706d ago
Forcing him not to share NPD data will not shut this guy up.
Jdoki  +   1706d ago
I suspect this has more to do with profit than any reflection on the industry.

I am only speculating, but I would think NPD is a subscription based service that releases the numbers every month along with a load of other reports and data.

People like Pachter sharing those numbers every month, means a lot of media outlets / analysts don't have to subscribe and can cherry pick the numbers without the context of the backup reports.
#9 (Edited 1706d ago ) | Agree(0) | Disagree(0) | Report | Reply
macky301  +   1706d ago
Pachter gags on dick,..

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