- So, Salon.com has just posted an article entitled 'Why can't gay dwarves get married in Middle-earth?', and subtitled: 'Video games have been ahead of the real world in accepting same-sex marriage. Why doesn't a new online "Lord of the Rings" game allow it?'

So, is the piece a useful half-elf or a bit of a cave troll? It's actually an extremely well-researched, well thought-out piece which touches on a lot of the relevant issues regarding LGBT-relevant content in games, and even gets Rockstar on the hook to talk about the same-sex kissing in Bully:

"Rodney Walker, a spokesman for Rockstar, says the Rockstar team thinks of their games not like films, with static storylines, but as worlds that allow players to make their own choices, and Rockstar tries to shut down as few of those choices as possible. "If you're planning to take a vacation to California, you don't say to yourself, 'Where am I not going?'" Walker says. "When people talk about what's allowed in a video game, it's not about permission, it's about experience ... The thing that's so exciting about video games, which is why we think the medium is so popular right now, is because ... you can have an actual individual experience.""

Anyhow, apparently the reason why they're not allowing single-sex marriage in The Lord Of The Rings Online is to do with squirrel color: "When fans complained on the message board about an erroneous squirrel color, Turbine promptly corrected the mistake. Turbine had released a screen shot of a forest scene featuring a gray squirrel, but Tolkien once wrote in a letter that he hated gray squirrels." Jeez, that Tolkien, what a squirrel bigot! Uhm, OK, this isn't the exact reason, but it's an extension of the authenticity/Middle Earth argument, so it all flows along similar slightly cuckoo lines, apparently.