Ted Price posted an insightful blog at the Insomniac Games website speaking against a law that could possibly restrict access to video games, going further than the current industry imposed ratings system that already exists in the US.
“It’s very important to note that no other form of media has to contend with this kind of restriction,” states Price. “It’s not illegal for those under 17 to attend a R rated movie, to read a Stephen King book or to listen to Howard Stern. But if the Supreme Court rules against the game industry, it could be illegal for someone under 18 to buy Resistance if the game is deemed inappropriate for minors under the new law. And as content creators, if there is a chance that our games will appear in an “Adults Only” section of game stores we will have to restrict what we create to avoid going out of business. To me such a situation is tantamount to government censorship.”
Ted Price goes on, asking the press to help raise awareness on issues that affect gaming as an industry and an art form.
“What I’d love to see are more game news outlets focusing on big issues like this,” says Ted. “Game sites can encourage gamers to take a stand and tell their representatives that games deserve the same protection as other art forms. We have the strength of hundreds of millions on our side. We need to take advantage of our numbers to make it crystal clear to our government that a law like this cannot stand.
“And one article doesn’t do it. Those who are reporting the news should be treating this case with the gravity it deserves – giving us frequent updates, interviewing those involved, opining on the outcome and explaining the consequences of a decision that goes against gamers.”
We in Australia are no strangers to such issues. The R18+ rating in Australia has gone quiet recently, but the Standing Committee of Attorneys-General will be meeting in December and the ratings system, as it applies to gaming, will be on the agenda. We’re currently looking at ways to help everyone get involved in ensuring the correct outcome.
Watch this space.