Brendan O'Connor: R18+ Will Help Secure Jobs For The Future

Speaking to students at the University of Ballarat, Brendan O'Connor claimed that introducing an R18+ rating for video games in Australia would help maintain the growth of the video games industry in our country.

“An adult classification for video games will provide better guidance for parents and remove unsuitable material from children and teenagers,” claimed O'Connor.

“It will also create further opportunities for Australian computer game developers, distributors and retailers – and that’s a great thing for students studying at the University of Ballarat.

“Australia’s local game design industry boasts more than 50 companies and over 200 game titles and it is growing strongly along with the international demand for new games,” he continued.

“We want to create opportunities for our young people in diverse parts of the economy. The games industry is an increasingly important part of our creative economy that we should support.”

While we do spend a fair amount of time fending off the argument that video game publishers want an R18+ rating for commercial reasons, we do appreciate the sentiment - even if we're not quite sure it'll make that much of a difference.

Despite some rumblings from Victorian Attorney-General Robert Clark, Brendan O'Connor re-affirmed his belief that we would have a final decision on R18+ this July.

“When making their decision," said O'Connor. "I urge State and Territory governments to consider the value of the computer gaming industry to Australia’s economy, as well as the need to provide better guidance for parents and greater protection for young game players."


Comments

    I really wanna buy this guy a beer. He bloody well deserves one!

      Too right mate. He really does deserve one.

        Well I'm sorry, but he can't have one. Nor can you.

        While beer might be fine for people over the age of 18, it's completely unsuitable for people under that age, and therefore nobody should be allowed to have it regardless of their age.

          Dammit.

          Let's ban driving cars then too, as that's clearly unsuitable for anyone under 16, so therefore nobody should drive cars.

            Don't forget to ban sex. Can't have kids possibly being exposed to that.

      hell fuckin yeah he deserves a carton

      Hold your horses, don't celebrate the man too much over this one issue. He's also one of the people still very strongly pushing for a mandatory ISP filter.
      I agree, this is a win, *IF* it happens, but I'm not counting on this passing smoothly just on his say so.

    Brendan O'Connor,

    You sir are a legend!

    Adults get their games, children will be protected, more money flow and people get jobs!

    Whats not to like about R18?!

      It corrupts kids! It'll lead to violence! It'll cause murders! It'll....

      Wait, no it won't. *shrug*

      >Adults get their games, children will be protected, more money flow and people get jobs!

      HEAVENS NO!! R18 will result in more violent games being made! Kids will get their hands on it like they so easily do with R rated films, p0rn, cigarettes and booze! We just don't know how to stop them from accessing those naughty things, we've tried nothing and we're all out of ideas!

      Ahh it's fun to role play an ignorant person/bad parent.

    A voice of reason.
    Lets hope its loud enough.....

    It's incredibly heartening to see a politician who isn't intimidated by the impassioned and influential 'moral' conservatives ... and to be honest, I thought I'd never see the day.

      A few people here seem to be forgetting that this is the same man who is a passionate supporter of the mandatory filter.
      He has some definite faults, and shouldn't be defined solely by some smart things he's said more recently (this).

        Not forgotten, and not defining... merely pointing out that he hasn't caved to loud conservative minority viewpoints, and gets a +1 for that.

        If you want to talk mandatory filters, though, I have some other words to say about ol' Bren...

    As much as I'm pro R-18 and am happy with Brendan O'Connor's support for the issue, I just don't buy this statement. And if a pro R-18 gamer doesn't buy it, then you can bet that the nay-sayers or even people in the middle ground won't buy it.

    I can't help but think that this claim will do more harm than good.

      I have the same worry...

        What happens though if there are state AGs who don't agree with him? Could the federal government then brute force in legislation to change the rating system regardless?

          @Mark,
          Yes, I am not 100% sure how but the Aus federal government does have a way of forceing the issue. They have control of the ratings system ultimately.

          Territories yes States no.

          It's in the constitution of the states.

          Each state can technically set up their own independant legislation to deny sale of rated content.
          The reverse is also true. With no defined adult code one QLD politician was trying to get a petition going to introduce legislation along the lines that any game that was RC could be legally bought there by adults. Circumventing the Federal Classification system.

          Basically the states legislation is why you cannot get X-Rated stuff in most states legally. Yet can drive to ACT and bring it back.

          Classification enforcement is left to the Police force of each state to investigate and bring notification of charges laid to the board. Needless to say majority of them have better things to do than chase up individual breaches of the Restricted Content material.

        I'm at the point where I know anything logical said for the pro R18+ campaign will do more harm than good. Those lobbyists just won't listen to reason and like to turn everything into a negative.

      Well, I guess you could argue it'd help jobs in retail since people wouldn't have to resort to importing games that are RC here but freely available everywhere else.

      But the number of games actually getting RC probably isn't great enough to make a significant impact. At least not until they ban something really huge like a GTA or COD and the publisher takes a stand on principle and refuses to release a cut down version here.

      well, to some extent it will help create jobs. there are probably a LOT of people working at games companies right now working on crappy licensed games for kids because it's the only stable form of income in the aus game industry. the r18 will ease up on some of the restrictions of what can be put into a game, so all these industry people can pack up their bags and form their own company making adult games.

      This is the reasoning to why I don't buy this claim:

      Each year in Australia lets say 3 - 4 games are refused classification, which is quite generous.

      In the case that an R-18 rating is introduced, I don't really think the retail sector will benefit SIGNIFICANTLY from these extra 3 - 4 games being available each year.

      I also don't expect that the video games industry will suddenly change focus to adult games just because one insignificant (in the profits sense) country has changed it's classification scheme. I don't believe that the Australian games industry will change focus either. I mean it's great for them to be free of censorship. Who doesn't want that? (oh right ACL :-S ). I just don't see how this is going to significantly increase profits, and hence jobs. "R-18 games" isn't a sector waiting to explode once R-18 is introduced.

      Just my two cents and opinion.

      :-)

      This is exaclty what i was thinking too.

      We certainly have a politician playing on side now huh

    But what about the children?!? also your argument is propaganda……

    yer i'm not really sure where he gets the idea that a few games not being ban in the country each year will "create further opportunities for Australian computer game developers, distributors and retailers".

      @googootz
      If you can work less restricted in a (very) competitive environment, you more opportunities to reach more audiences.

      That's sort of the idea he's going with. Not every programmer wants to make pokemon games, some want to make Left 4 Dead 2 or Gothic 3.

      I don't think you get what he just said. lol

    I'm all for the rating, but don't agree with that inference.
    I think by this point, he's just keeping the issue in peoples' minds, and thereby putting more pressure on the Attorneys General to do something at their next meeting in June.

    Call me crazy, but I would (begrudgingly) live without an R18+ rating if the government gave local developers financial assistance equivalent to what they give the film industry - I think that would make even more jobs.

    (But I think O'Connor's a great guy, all the same!)

    I really dont care that much, even thou i am 11yrs old i really dont care as long as they dont put a R rating (Possible) on battlefield 3

    What you guys are all missing, is that at this point in time, every single game must go though the clasification process. Meaning we do not get any independent devoper games on xbox or ps3.
    I noticed on my xbox an indy game section. its empty. I go online and do some resesach and find out their are a lot of games that are not relased at all in australia due to it being way to expensive.

      Well... people are aware of it, but it's a different issue entirely - Microsoft are (effectively) the publisher of any indie games and our classification board don't tolerate the peer-review system Microsoft have in place.

      That means that because the classification board need to have their say, it would cost MS a helluva lot of time and money to get them all classified. A lot of the games aren't worth the time spent to make them, so we miss out.

      Somehow Apple's review/filtering/classification system is fine (although, still not exactly legal) and that's the really frustrating thing.

    I just want to play Mortal Kombat when it comes out. I would prefer to buy it but should the powers that be prevent me from doing so, you can bet that reading the newsgroups will solve this problem for me.

    That picture is not of Beendan O'Connor

    The Attorney Generals will shoot it down again, I guarantee they will, and then morons like the ACL will have another false credence to lay behind their outrageous claims.

      If that happens the government will step in and do something about it.

    Our fight means nothing if already-RC games aren't even given a chance to be reclassified into R18+ (should it go ahead)...

    http://au.gamespot.com/news/6305149.html

    Obviously the Australian Christian Lobby hasn't brought him yet.

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