John Rau Spokesperson: R18+ Reports Are “Misleading”

John Rau Spokesperson: R18+ Reports Are “Misleading”

John Rau Spokesperson: R18+ Reports Are “Misleading”We’ve just gotten off the phone with the David Washington, spokesperson for John Rau, who has expressed concern about reports stating that South Australia would go ahead with an R18+ rating regardless of whether there is a consensus at the upcoming SCAG meeting.

According to him, South Australia would only go ahead with an R18+ rating if the Federal Government were to make the changes required on a statutory level for them to do so.

“The Gamespot story is a bit misleading,” claimed Washington. “We wanted to clarify that if the Federal Government decides to go ahead with an R18+ rating we will follow suit. But if the Attorneys-General leave without a consensus, and the Federal Government decides to drop the issue, we won’t be going ahead with an R18+ rating.

“But, that said, from all of the signs we’ve been hearing at a Federal level, it looks like the Federal Government is going to go ahead with R18+.”

We also spoke to Ron Curry, CEO of the Interactive Games and Entertainment Association, who claimed that the logistics of having separate states with separate ratings would be a “logistical nightmare”.

“For videogame distributors it would be extremely difficult – especially when games rated MA15+ in some states are rated differently elsewhere. They would require different advertisements for different states, different print ads, different TV ads. It’s difficult to see how it would all work.

“And what happens when they distribute the games? The games would have to have different classification logos on the box. Logistically it would be very difficult.”

It’s possible that there has been a slight misreading of John Rau’s statements, and possibly a slight misunderstanding on the Attorney-General’s part on the process of how an R18+ rating would be introduced. But, on a positive note, it seems that the Federal Government is already making preparations for an adult rating regardless of the outcome of the SCAG meeting.

Somehow, eventually, it seems we may finally receive an R18+ rating in Australia.


  • Oh, a GameSpot article that wasn’t entirely representative of the facts, but instead was filled with questionable lines of reasoning in order to generate page-hits based on a hot-button issue for all gamers?

    Say it isn’t so!


    • /facepalm

      What’s that? Gamespot *totally making shit up* to get page views?
      Or maybe just not having any idea about the issue…

      I’m unsure which is worse =/

      (Kudos to David Washington for being more diplomatic about it than I am capable)

      • Gamespot were not making stuff up at all. I think it was probably John Rau’s slight misunderstanding to be honest. I would have written the exact same story had I done that interview. I have to give credit where credit is due – I’m a big fan of Laura Parker from Gamespot. She does great work.

        • Nowhere in the quotes linked does he even come close to suggesting that. Maybe I’m not seeing something because I’m familiar with the people and the law, I don’t know.

          The closest is “Rau says it will be up to each state to either adopt or reject an R18+ classification for games”, but that is in the event that the *feds* go it alone.

          He also mentions SA potentially having a different scheme. In the same way that the ACT and NT do, in allowing the sale of X18+ material.

          I, honestly, do not know how someone who is familiar with the classification system in Australia would come the the conclusion that Ms Parker did. If there’s something I’m missing, please tell me.

          • I don’t think you’re missing anything, you may be right, but I felt like defending her, because I know Laura is very good at her job.

  • I can kinda see where Mr. Rau is coming from. Allowing the States to govern their own classifications could be a positive. Doing it that way, would mean that an overly conservative state couldn’t restrict the freedoms of the country as a whole, and an overly liberal state couldn’t force questionable smut on the rest of us.

    On the otherhand, having a game rated for seven different states would undoubtedly cost more than a unified rating. Considerably more. Probably not such an issue with the heavyweights, but it’d practically be a cockblock for indie developers, who struggle even with the current rating system.

  • While I get that adult gamers are excited to have an SA AG who supports an R18+ rating, the fact that he wants to abolish the MA15+ rating in his state (So the ratings would go G, PG, M, R) is ridiculous. As a 16 year old gamer, there is content that is rated MA15+ that *shouldn’t* be rated R18+. The fact that this man wants to scrap the MA rating and reclassify all existing games in that rating as R without individual assessment is, in my opinion, stupid. I’m in NSW, so hopefully he won’t effect me, but if he influences the other Attorneys General to adopt similar positions then I won’t be a happy person.

    • Even if other states follow suit, there’s basically no hope the ACT would. So EB and GAME and other online retailers would just move their online presence to be officially in the ACT. You’d then be buying them in the ACT, just like it’s perfectly legal for (adult) people across Aus to buy their pron DVDs mail order from the ACT.

  • Another kick in the crotch of hope that a 30 year old man who can legally own a Car, Cigarettes, Alchohol, Firearms, Swords (unregulated), Knives (unregulated), Bows (unregulated) and Custom built Death Rays (unregulated) all of which can be deadly when misused, could finally play a round of Mortal Kombat without people thinking he’s going to walk outside and start teleport punching people (Is that still one of Scorpions moves? I don’t know I can’t play the game.)

    I have a new catch cry for this, I hope it catches on.

    “Won’t somebody think of the Adults?”

    • Where do you live that swords and knives are unregulated? Cos in Rau’th Australia, they are.

      (see what I did there? yeah. >.>)

      • In his live action role playing world down at the local park. I hear Lightening Bolt +2 is also unregulated.

        • You can walk into any Big W, and buy a knife. Sure it’s a kitchen knife, but there is forms to fill out swearing your not about to go stabbing people. Heck the checkouts are automated so a 10 year old with a Twenty can do it without anyone realising.

          As for Swords, I bought a cheap set of crap Samurai Swords some years ago from China town for $20. My Friend paid $300-ish for his actual proper for real and sharp Rapier he uses in Fencing, no forms, no license just hand over the cash and take your pick.

          So in all seriousness deady weapons are easy to acquire.

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