I Used To Get This Call Every Day: David S. Gallant Has Been Fired For Making A Game About His Job

I Get This Call Every Day

Right now, I’m feeling all sorts of stupid human emotions: fury, anger, hate, sorrow…my hand is shaking on the mouse; it’s scratching the desk a little. But none of that is comparable to what I’m imagining David S. Gallant is feeling right now. He just got fired. “So what?” you may be thinking – happens every day to people, right? It’s the REASON as to why this has happened that’s really grating against my flesh.

You may recall his game I Get This Call Every Day. Essentially you play as David himself as he works his day job (though it’s not any more) as a phone operator for the Canadian Revenue Agency (CRA). You answer a call from a complete dimwit and try to deal with their problem, yet they end up being a right fuss and completely incompetent at doing just about anything. You can attempt to co-operate with them or you could just go ape shit at them and most likely be fired…in the game. It’s a simulation, sort of, as you go through all the proceedings that David used to every day.

But let’s just make this one point very, very, crystal clear:

THE WHOLE THING IS FICTIONAL!

Got that? And no, I’m not going to calm down because the National Revenue Minister, Gail Shea, ended up seeing the game according to this article, and she wasn’t “amused” by it. The result? David has now lost his job there.


Hang Up

I Get This Call Every DaySo this is what happened, from what I can gather, as David refused to comment on the whole situation, so more firm details aren’t yet available. Gail Shea sent the Commissioner of Revenue at CRA, Andrew Treusch, to “investigate” the game and to make sure that no confidential taxpayer information was compromised. Fair enough, but did I mention the game was entirely fictional and just based on true events? With that being the case, you might think that they wouldn’t find anything in this investigation that compromised anyone’s privacy. There’s NOTHING in the game that should cause them to think that is the case.

Regardless of if they found anything that they deem a risk to someone’s privacy, they’ve now fired David, and there’s nothing we can do about it. Some have theorized that perhaps depicting this soulless place of work as the misery that it actually is inside a game scares them. Obviously, they don’t want that bad rep going around, not like it didn’t exist anyway, but I can assure them that they look a million times more demonic than before. And I have no idea what the following quotation is about – it was written to The Star about the game by the Minister’s communications director, Clarke Olsen:

“The Minister considers this type of conduct offensive and completely unacceptable.”

And you, Gail Shea – I find what you’ve caused just now entirely offensive and completely unacceptable.

Yeah, okay, I’ll level with you – David hated that job, as he made clear to me previously, so “woo, freedom” and all. But the man has to pay rent, and I’m sure we all know how much of a shit that can be. If you want to help out, you can do as others are doing and go and purchase I Get This Call Every Day and also vote it up on Greenlight (you never know).

Others might be taking a different approach, as discussions of a Canadian Revenue Agency Appreciation game jam are fluttering about on Twitter. Mike Bithell has even gone and written up a little proposal on his Tumblr.

This world, man, this bloody world…

  • Lanvarok

    Scumbag government… Personal life shouldn’t have any effect on work life. If you do your job efficiently and courteously, then I believe you should be rewarded.

  • http://humespeaks.tumblr.com Hume

    I want to sympathize. I am not a public servant, but I know that a lot of public servants would not be fired for making games about their jobs. That said, here are a few points from the code of ethics he agreed to:

    * Public servants shall perform their duties and arrange their private affairs so that public confidence and trust in the integrity, objectivity and impartiality of government are conserved and enhanced.
    * If a conflict should arise between the private interests and the official duties of a public servant, the conflict shall be resolved in favour of the public interest.
    * Respect for human dignity and the value of every person should always inspire the exercise of authority and responsibility.

    Yes, that covers private life, too. So does your fat pension. Public service involves dealing with the public, some of whom are statistically guaranteed to be idiots. If you don’t like it, don’t swear the oath and don’t take the job.

    Or, you know, get fired and get a bunch of attention for it. Successful tactic is successful? Naah, just trollin’.