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An Open Letter to Don Mattrick: The Xbox Community Wants to Talk to You
Dear Don Mattrick,
My name is Danny Peña, founder of Gamertag Radio. I’ve been part of the Xbox Community since I played your first console back in Nov. 2001 in New York City. One of the things I loved about that event was getting to know the people that worked on it behind the scenes. At the event, I got to meet an Xbox exec whose name was J Allard. He was at the event from the beginning until the end, talking to the fans and getting everyone excited for the next big thing. Years later, Microsoft was getting ready to launch the Xbox 360. J Allard came to our show just to talk about the console. (Thanks to a former employee, Trixie, for helping make that happen.) There was no PR involvement; it was J Allard himself who said yes to our request. He got us excited once again by just talking to us instead of depending on the media.
Weeks later, there was an Xbox 360 launch event called Zero Hour where fans got to play the console days before launch. The event was for the hardcore gamers, the ones who would spend hours–even days–in line just to be the first to buy an Xbox 360. Not only that, but former Xbox execs, J Allard and Peter Moore, held a great community Q&A session with indie sites at the event. They answered questions about the present and future of Xbox 360.
Gamertag Radio has been a proven and established voice for the community. Our track record speaks for itself, and we are asking for the opportunity to speak with you and ask questions the community has been curious about since the reveal of the Xbox One.
We believe something in your message is missing, and your relationship with the community has been damaged. In our eyes, the trust many of your customers had in the Xbox team–which was what set Xbox apart from the competition–has been lost. What made Xbox so unique in the past was its relationship with its gaming community. Something changed in 2009 and it has not been the same since. I believe you have lost touch with the community. Yes, the MVP program is a wonderful thing, but instead of the Xbox team being made up of people who are passionate about your product, we are only seeing the business side of the Xbox product. The focus on community has taken a back seat. Since 2009 we have seen less and less interaction with the gaming community and more messages like we got during E3 2013.
For the record, here are some of our past interviews with Xbox executives:
J Allard Nov 2005
J Allard and Peter Moore Q&A at Zero Hour – Nov 2005
Q&A with Peter Moore – June 2006
E3 2007: Interview with Peter Moore
E3 2007: Speed Interview with Peter Moore
E3 2007: Interview with Jeff Bell
We appreciate you taking the time to read this letter and we look forward to speaking with you soon.