Sony’s PlayStation 4 is designed to feel impenetrable. The machine — jet black, almost brutalist in shape — conceals its function to the untrained eye. Power on and disk eject buttons, as well as the actual disk drive, are almost invisible. It’s as if Sony hopes to imbue the object with a sense of mystery and awe. The PlayStation 2 played with similar emotions at the turn of the millennium, sitting bolt upright like the Monolith in 2001: A Space Odyssey. But the most recent PlayStation looks more like the headquarters of a galactic government. Its secrets, though, couldn’t be more terrestrial, originating deep within Earth’s crust and at the hands of workers across the globe. Far from being detached from the environment, the PlayStation 4 is an object hewn from its materials and inhabitants. As the climate crisis chastens and public awareness grows, environmental concerns have finally made their way to the video game industry. Sony recently signed up to the United Nations-backed initiative Playing for the Planet, while it’s broader “Road to Zero” initiative aims to “achieve a zero environmental footprint by the year 2050,” including goals to curb climate change, conserve resources, and promote biodiversity. But precisely… Read full this story
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