And the general impression I get is... well... as I've said previously, a lot of them just seem to repackage the same information. This might not be the case with VG247, but... as I say, I have no opinion on that.
Anyhow, some of you may be aware - as it seems to be becoming a bit of a thing on the social media - that VG247 recently wrote up an unflattering preview of Uncharted 4, following a hands-on session at the Tokyo Games Show.
Except... the game they actually played wasn't Uncharted 4, but the remastered version of Uncharted 2. Cue embarrassment. Cue the lobbing of firebrands and venomous orbs.
The article was removed once developer Naughty Dog pointed out the error, and VG247's editor Matt Martin has since come out to apologise... though, inevitably, the original article still exists online.
As you'd expect, the site's now coming in for some serious flack. But is that fair?
Back when Digitiser was a Teletext thing, and not just another website vying for a bite of the online pasty, we had zero competition. Alright, there was a games page on Ceefax, but we were the only real, viable, daily games magazine.
Even then, Digi was a hungry beast that needing constant feeding. Heck, a big part of why we started writing stupid stuff, coming up with the characters and whatnot, was because we needed to fill space. We needed stuff to write about, and there wasn't always stuff to write about. Or if there was stuff, often it was too boring to report on unvarnished. Hence the stupidity; to relieve our own boredom.
Nowadays, I can't imagine the pressure felt by those running websites. There must be no time to stop and catch your breath - the pace of Internet consumption must make it feel like running on an atomic treadmill.
If you're not engaging enough, not punchy enough, not current enough, people are going to click away from your site... maybe for ever. No clicks means less advertising revenue. Less advertising revenue might mean your site could go under.
We had it easy with Digi, relatively speaking... but even we screwed up from time to time. And when I say "from time to time" I mean "often". Plus, when we did cock things up, we never had the Internet breathing down our necks telling us what idiots we were. We were able to shrug it off and move on.
Fact is, games journalists are human beings too. It's too much to expect them to be infallible. In certain quarters, there seems to be an expectation of them to be above making mistakes.
I dunno whether that's a righteousness borne of jealousy, due to a mistaken perception of games journos as the privileged, because they're all earning six figure salaries, and do nothing but play games all day. Or whether it's because people just feel really passionate about games, and games journalists are an easy target. Or whether it's because some people are simply dickflaps.
Whatever the case, all we can hope for is that journos - like everyone else - try to do their best. The writer of the "Uncharted 4" preview seemed to have at least a passing familiarity with the series, but I don't know if I remember every last moment of Uncharted 2... and I loved it. I'm sure - in the surroundings of a busy game show, where you're looking for stuff to write about - it's a mistake any of us could've made. Alright, it's a stupid mistake to make... but aren't they all?
None of us can expect to breeze through life without making errors, but what matters most is how you then respond to that. And VG247 responded in the best way possible, by raising their hands and admitting they ballsed up. There was no passing the buck, or making excuses. Expecting every writer, every editor, every site, to be 100% correct,100% of the time, is unrealistic.
Then again, so is expecting the Internet to give people a break when they put a foot wrong. But I live in hope.