Reader Dean has sent in a letter he received from the office of the honourable Kerry Shine, Queensland's Attorney General, regarding the need for an R18+ rating for video games. While the AG wasn't in a position to reply, Derran Moss, his Senior Policy Advisor, was. His response is thought-out, if a little generic, and makes mention of the SCAG discussion paper. Sadly, in the sixth paragraph Mr Moss shows just how narrow-minded our politicians are about video games:
Effective enforcement of the R18+ classification may also be difficult to achieve where the product is located in the home and parents/guardians are unlikely to have the skills, time or opportunity to appropriately monitor computer game use by minors under their supervision.
The sheer dumbness of this statement stuns me. What sort of skills does a parent need to stare at a computer screen or the classification sticker on the box? How hard is it to not buy an inappropriate game or take it away if a mistake is made? No harder than doing it with DVD movies, which do have an R18+ rating and haven't caused kids to go on murderous rampages, despite being available in homes.
To Moss' credit, he does admit that adults "should be entitled access to R18+ classified computer games", so there's hope yet for Queensland and the rest of Australia.
Oh, and to any politicians against R18+ who may be reading this, please stop with the "can't be regulated at home" argument. It's bullshit.
I've included JPEGs of the letter after the jump, if you'd like a read. [Thanks Dean]