An item which aired on CBC's "The National" on February 26 is irresponsible, inaccurate and damaging, says slot machine manufacturer Konami Gaming. The company will pursue legal action.
The report by journalist Dave Seglins claims that a few older Konami machines contain a "subliminal message," implying that this may affect the behavior of the player but the story does not specify how, if at all, this could occur. Mr. Seglins was told in an interview with Konami C.O.O. Steve Sutherland that the machines in question are actually some of the lowest performing machines, based on house averages, within the Konami game library
"The performance of these machines directly disproves the CBC's theory, but the reporter conveniently neglected to mention that in his piece," says Sutherland. "The reporter did not ask for the data that shows these machines generate less revenue than comparable machines. Broadcasting a story based on controversial and vague theories, despite the facts which refute those theories, is irresponsible and impugns the integrity of an honest company."
In addition, the CBC reporter neglected to include that the psychologist he interviewed for the story, Philip Merikle, wrote in the Encyclopedia of Psychology that "there is no independent evidence indicating that embedded subliminal words, symbols or objects are used to sell products. Furthermore, even if such embedded subliminal stimuli were used, there is no evidence to suggest this would be an effective method for influencing the choices that consumers make."
The CBC story was also misleading by creating the impression that subliminal perception is a more powerful influencer. Merikle wrote in the same encyclopedia, "A common theme that links all extraordinary claims regarding subliminal perception is that perception in the absence of an awareness of perceiving is somehow more powerful or influential. This idea is not supported by the results of controlled laboratory investigations."
The CBC presented no evidence and no first-hand accounts to support any of its claims.
The report shows that five of the same symbol appear for 200-milliseconds on the screen at the start of a game on four (three in Canada) game titles developed in 2001. "Even though this has absolutely no effect whatsoever on the outcome of the game, we have still offered conversion kits for every machine," adds Sutherland.
"Konami will pursue its legal options related to what it considers irresponsible reporting on the part of CBC, and the resultant impact on the integrity of Konami Gaming," says Sutherland.
About Konami Gaming, Inc.
Konami Gaming, Inc. is a Las Vegas-based subsidiary of KONAMI CORPORATION (NYSE: KNM). The company is a leading designer and manufacturer of slot machines and casino management systems for the global gaming market. For more information about Konami Gaming, Inc., please visit http://www.konamigaming.com
Leah Steinhardt, Marketing Manager
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