I think the major problem with this "issue" is that there is no other symbol to denote health that is in use in the United States, where a lot of these rooty-shooty games are made. There may be other symbols for this in other countries, but there is no other set standard symbol for "you can heal with this" that won't confuse today's kids, other than a pill (which is ambiguous) and a needle. Plus, a lot of newer games don't even bother with medical kits anymore, for obvious reasons.
Unfortunately, this is what happens when a symbol, which shouldn't be owned by the company making such a fuss about this, faces genericide - even though that isn't the appropriate term here. There really isn't one to use! That's how specific this Red Cross debate is.
Unlike "Legos" meaning toy building bricks, "Jell-o" meaning flavored gelatin, or "Escalator" meaning, well, an escalator (Otis lost that trademark completely by their own stupidity), the Red Cross symbol meaning health shouldn't be covered this way. It's supposed to be well known for times of war and emergency, and if that has been propogated through awareness of Red Cross, or its use in video games, then so much the better.
Don't blame Red Cross for this. Blame Johnson & Johnson for this.
I'm not sure I can buy the "dilution by irrelevance" bit, because as common knowledge indicates, the Red Cross symbol means medical assistance, safe haven, and nothing much else. The "healing" motif is still there, that's why it was being used to symbolize health in video games in the first place. Provided that a person isn't a total idiot that has somehow blocked all external stimuli, I don't think anyone will see a medic vehicle and think anything else. That's a good thing.
I'm not sure where exactly you're getting the idea that it's "childish" to expect the red cross symbol to accurately and consistently represent medical buildings and vehicles and not be diluted by other irrelevant uses.
On the other hand, there are symbols for poison , like skull and crossbones, that have been confused with piracy. Especially with children. Not so with the Red Cross.
Last edited by Csonicgo on Dec 16 2012 at 07:24