John Cridland, director general of the Confederation of British Industry, recently spoke out about the importance of the arts in education, emphasising the need for British schools to push them alongside other subjects because of their value in creative industries. He used the UK’s video games industry as an example, but rather than saying something lovely about all our British developers, he called them “spotty nerds.”
“One of the biggest growth industries in Britain today is the computer games industry,” said Cridland in an interview with The Independent. “We need extra coders – dozens and dozens of them but nobody is going to play a game designed by a spotty nerd. We need people with artistic flair.”
If I’m not mistaken, Cridland is suggesting that people with a bit of acne who are pretty enthusiastic about games are simply unable to possess artistic flair.
Jason Kingsley, boss over at UK’s Rebellion, has a thing or two to say about this. In a statement on Rebellion’s website, he writes: “To belittle pure academic achievement with words like nerd or geek is something done by bullies, and is surprising coming from someone in a position to influence the career choices of many young people, some of whom respond to social pressure in ways that may not benefit them in the future. To be a nerd is to be passionate about something, and surely we should want everyone to be passionate about their career?”
I met a video game developer once. He had beautiful skin. Dunno what this Cridland chap is talking about if I’m honest.