Your R18+ Rating Submissions

The period of public consultation on the issue of whether Australia should have an R18+ rating for videogames is drawing to a close. You have until February 28 to make a submission. Many Kotaku readers already have, and we're going to share them with you.

Last week we asked you to send us your submission to encourage your fellow Kotaku readers to have their say as well. We said we'd publish your closing 250-word comments. So for the rest of the week we'll be highlighting some of the best in individual posts.

This submission comes from Cameron Chu, who writes:

There should be no question that Australia needs a R.18+ classification introduced. No longer are video games designed strictly with children as their core target. The age of the average Australian that plays computer games is now 28, making it absurd that the Government continues to censor and ban video games that adults are more than mature enough to play. However, it is common sense to prevent minors from obtaining such games which are excessively violent or sexual. That is why a R.18+ classification is a necessity, meeting the demands of both sides of the age spectrum.

There are consequences for being the only developed nation that does not have a R.18+ rating. Inevitably there will be games that blur between what could be considered 'R18+' or 'MA15+', and risk being shovelled into the latter, the highest that we have as it stands. This has occurred already; with the release of 'House of the Dead: Overkill', the Government has ironically unleashed a game with insane amounts of profanity and violence freely available to minors due to the incompetencies of a system that is supposed to prevent it.

While nay sayers of such a scheme will immediately point out that minors can easily bypass such a system, that is not the case. If established into law, there will naturally be penalties for breaking the said law; as such, there will be a disincentive for retailers to sell R.18+ games to minors due to the lingering possiblity of a fine or imprisonment. The Government should not stop the few reckless people that behave irresponsibly at the cost of the majority that don't.

We are a democratic country that believes in the freedom of choice; the Government should start reflecting it.

In case you’re yet to state your case, here’s how to do it.

The call for public consultation (AG.gov.au) The Bond University Interactive Australia report (for helpful research insights)


Comments

    HoTD Overkill is the perfect example of why our system is flawed. Well done Cameron :)

    Can i please ask a very important question. What happens after the 28th of Febuary? Although Submissions close it could still take years to get the legislation changed. IMO this is all a waste of time, Mr Atkinsons has his beliefs set in concrete and WILL NOT change his mind. I have submitted my thoughts but i know its all in vain. I hope i am wrong but will not be dissapointed when nothing happens.

    Yes all submissions i have read have all stated very true facts but after a while it all sounds the same, Why not just send a document in just saying YES, i am for R18+ classification or NO etc... The A-G offices dont have the time to read through all the thousands of submissions sent to them, where a big fat bold YES or NO would have the same impact as a long, fully thought out letter that states the same facts as thousands of submissions before it.

    There's always lobbying your state AG to implement an R18 rating in consultation with other AGs who aren't as backwards as SA's.

    The rating scheme is nothing more than an agreement between states. There's no constitutional or other legal reason why a state could not add an R18 rating of its own and amend the state legislation (which is what enforces the NCC) accordingly.

    Atkinson's just a convenient foil for the other AGs so they don't have to do anything. They do technically have other options.

    May i ask what options the they have?

    The AG's job is to pass or ban laws that would affect the OFLC, If OFLC laws were on state by state basis, do you think that the states would already have the classification in by now.

    Currently the SA election is neck and neck at the moment so we will have to wait and see if the Libs get in and have an AG that is willing to have the R18+ rating.
    God i feel so dirty after saying that

      "The AG’s job is to pass or ban laws that would affect the OFLC"

      No, it isn't.

      The OFLC doesn't make laws, states do. The NCC, and the body that carries out the ratings, are nothing more than an agreement between states - and any state could choose not to participate.

      Or, more realistically, to participate up to the extent that the OFLC is allowed to go, and then to add a separate R18 option on a state basis. If it's really only Atkinson who's against the idea, the other states could share the cost of doing that.

      All they'd have to do is amend the state legislation that makes selling anything RC an offence, by adding something to the effect of "unless rated R18 by whatever body we set up".

      Eventually I suspect SA would join in (since it'll look pretty ridiculous being the only state where R18 games are banned), and then the whole thing can be farmed back to the OFLC.

      But it's fundamentally wrong for the SA AG to be telling Victorians what they can and can't watch. He can only do that with the Victorian AG's agreement. And we can vote against him.

      And I wouldn't be so confident about the Liberals being any better on this - have they promised they'll support an R18 rating? No, they haven't. They're just as conservative on the issue as Atkinson.

      Your best bet other than Gamers4Croydon would be the Greens and the Libertarians.

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