Everything's coming up Mitchell
Billy Mitchell has been a controversial figure in the arcade world for years. Having held multiple records for the original Donkey Kong arcade game, his process was made famous in the 2007 documentary King of Kong. His records were later revoked however, after claims that he cheated using tricks such as emulation and unsanctioned joysticks. Now, official record keeper Twin Galaxies has decided that his records were legitimate after all.
According to Twin Galaxies, this reversal comes after a new opinion brought to light by computer science expert, Dr. Michael Zyda. According to Zyda, any irregularities in footage of Mitchell achieving his scores could come from degrading hardware rather than intentional trickery:
Recently, on behalf of Mr. Mitchell, Dr. Michael Zyda, an individual who holds a Bachelor of Arts in Computer and Information Science from University of California, San Diego, a Master’s of Science in Computer and Information Science from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and a Doctorate of Science from the University of Washington School of Engineering, and who has been qualified as an expert by California and federal courts, concluded that the game play on the subject tapes could in fact depict play on original unmodified Donkey Kong arcade hardware if the hardware involved was malfunctioning likely due to degradation of components.
Twin Galaxies is committed to ensuring fairness for all parties and to allow and consider any new information that becomes available. In addition, Twin Galaxies seeks to disclose all and any evidence so that individuals can form their own judgments. To this end, Twin Galaxies openly and publicly takes note of Dr. Zyda’s expressed expert opinion in regard to providing a method by which the videotape content in question might have been produced.
This may not be enough to convince everyone that Billy Mitchell isn’t the villain he’s been painted as, but it seems to be enough for Twin Galaxies. They’ve even gone so far as to remove the original reports/discussions of the alleged misconduct from their web site. For his part, Mitchell said that he was “relieved and satisfied to reach this resolution”.
It's really important to note here, that technically, his records were restored only on the Historical Database, which is essentially a Wayback Machine for Twin Galaxies. On the current leaderboards, Billy is nowhere to be seen.
Of course, Billy still gets to say he's got records, but he seems self-delusional. He can say in his statement that his scores are re-instated, but that's not what TG is actually saying.