Australia's official games industry body has welcomed yesterday's release by the Federal Government of a discussion paper on video game classification. The paper seeks public consultation on whether an R18+ rating should be added to the classification scheme.
Ron Curry, CEO of the Interactive Games & Entertainment Association, says he is very pleased the government had finally made good on its promise to release the discussion paper, originally proposed in early 2008.
Curry adds that he was happy with the summary of the key arguments, both for and against.
"The paper is well constructed and positions both sides of the argument fairly," he says, "which is a very welcomed change to what we’ve been used to from those opposing the introduction."
However, he is quick to emphasise that this doesn't mean the industry's battle is now won.
"This is certainly the first step in a long journey, but it’s a start," says Curry. "As the paper says, there is a lot of territory between here and reaching a final outcome. Saying that, we are confident that the government will see that the majority of adults support the introduction of the R18+ classification and not just a “small number of very zealous gamers."
For those who wish to make their views heard, Curry also suggests a cautious approach.
"My advice to begin with is to very carefully read both the Discussion Paper and Submission Template," he says. "For those wanting to do the very minimum, the Submission Template allows for an easy way to give feedback to government. The most important advice is that everyone who is concerned makes an effort to ensure they contribute to the consultation and they do so in a meaningful and positive manner."
We hope to hear more thoughts on the release of the discussion paper from both South Australian Attorney-General Michael Atkinson and Gamers 4 Croydon founder David Doe later today.