When Will They Learn? Yet Another Video Game Law Declared Unconstitutional

from the try,-try-again dept

Some politicians, it seems, will never learn. Despite being court after court after court after court striking down each state law that would ban the sale of video games to minors, the various states have to keep trying... only to have the laws thrown out in court again. Following a temporary injunction from late last year that stopped the law from going into effect, the court has now granted a permanent injunction against the law, noting that the evidence presented by the state in support of the law was unconvincing. It tried to use some of the various studies trying to show a link between video games and violence, but the judge recognized all the typical problems with such studies, and gave some good quotes in response: "it could just as easily be said that the interactive element in video games acts as an outlet for minors to vent their violent or aggressive behavior, thereby diminishing the chance they would actually perform such acts in reality....Not only does the Act not materially advance the state's stated interest, but it appears to discriminate against a disfavored 'newcomer' in the world of entertainment media. Thus, 'singling out' the videogame industry does not advance the state's alleged goal." Why do we get the feeling this won't be the last such lawsuit or law we'll be hearing about?

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  • identicon
    ali baba, 3 Apr 2006 @ 7:38pm

    They will never learn

    politicians will always be politicians... they will never learn. maybe it's because they don't really like to accept the fact. or just maybe its because of their superego.... who know. the fact is... they will never learn

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 4 Apr 2006 @ 7:23am

      Re: They will never learn

      Thanks for recapping the article a second time. We needed that about as much as we need this post making fun of you.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Steve, 4 Apr 2006 @ 12:38pm

      Re: They will never learn

      Government big enough to supply everything you need is big enough to take everything you have .... The course of history shows that as a government grows, liberty decreases. -- Thomas Jefferson

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Pemrick69, 3 Apr 2006 @ 7:50pm

    Who needs to learn what?

    And the problem with this law is... what? Why are we debating whether exposing a minor to violence is bad? The movie industry already decided this, by restricting the sale of tickets and movies to R-rated movies, and the music industry decided that mature content shouldn't be sold to minors, with the use of the parental advisory sign. (Did they update this too a new system? If they did, I wouldn't have noticed.) So, how exactly would declaring a law to restrict the sale of video games with mature rated content to minors "discriminate against a disfavored 'newcomer' in the world of entertainment media"? Because the other entertainment outlets are... already forced to follow these rules?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Mike (profile), 3 Apr 2006 @ 7:52pm

      Re: Who needs to learn what?

      Why are we debating whether exposing a minor to violence is bad? The movie industry already decided this, by restricting the sale of tickets and movies to R-rated movies, and the music industry decided that mature content shouldn't be sold to minors, with the use of the parental advisory sign.

      Both are cases where the industry has agreed to do this *voluntarily* themselves. In neither case is the government involved.

      The constitution is pretty clear that the gov't cannot restrict free speech...

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Tyshaun, 4 Apr 2006 @ 7:50am

        Re: Re: Who needs to learn what?

        Why are we debating whether exposing a minor to violence is bad? The movie industry already decided this, by restricting the sale of tickets and movies to R-rated movies, and the music industry decided that mature content shouldn't be sold to minors, with the use of the parental advisory sign.

        Both are cases where the industry has agreed to do this *voluntarily* themselves. In neither case is the government involved.

        The constitution is pretty clear that the gov't cannot restrict free speech...


        Mike, you are absolutely wrong, at least about the music censorship. The music ratings systems were a direct result of the congressional hearings held on music lyrics in the 1980's. Remember when groups like Twisted Sister and Ice T had to get up before congress and explain their lyrics to everyone? If memory serves Al Gores wife was the major champion of this one. Sure, in the end the music industry "voluntairly" put ratings on the msuic, but it was to avert the federal government coming up with it's own standards.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Joel Moore, 3 Apr 2006 @ 8:54pm

      Re: Who needs to learn what?

      And the problem with this law is... what? Why are we debating whether exposing a minor to violence is bad? The movie industry already decided this, by restricting the sale of tickets and movies to R-rated movies, and the music industry decided that mature content shouldn't be sold to minors, with the use of the parental advisory sign. (Did they update this too a new system? If they did, I wouldn't have noticed.) So, how exactly would declaring a law to restrict the sale of video games with mature rated content to minors "discriminate against a disfavored 'newcomer' in the world of entertainment media"? Because the other entertainment outlets are... already forced to follow these rules?

      You are misinformed. Selling a CD with an "Explicit Lyrics" label on it or letting a 13 year old into a rated R movie is not against the law. Games already have a voluntary rating system just like movies and music.



      The problem here is that the older generation that's making these laws hasn't figured out that games aren't just for kids anymore. Because they are so out of touch with modern culture, they don't seem to understand what is happening to the game-playing demographic.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Vinnie, 4 Apr 2006 @ 8:37am

        Re: Re: Who needs to learn what?

        You are misinformed. Selling a CD with an "Explicit Lyrics" label on it or letting a 13 year old into a rated R movie is not against the law.

        Actually in many states (maybe all of them?) it is illegal to let a 13 year-old into an R rated movie and the theater can be fined or even shut-down if it happens habitually.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 4 Apr 2006 @ 2:37pm

          Re: Re: Re: ........

          " 'You are misinformed. Selling a CD with an "Explicit Lyrics" label on it or letting a 13 year old into a rated R movie is not against the law.'

          Actually in many states (maybe all of them?) it is illegal to let a 13 year-old into an R rated movie and the theater can be fined or even shut-down if it happens habitually."


          That's not entirely true either, a parent or guardian can escort someone under the age of 18 into an R rated movie at the theater. NC-17 is another issue, but how often do NC-17 movies make it to the big screen (very rare)...



          "The only thing consistent with people that commit acts of violence is that they are most likely victims of violence themselves. Since things like parenting aren't manditorily taught in most schools it's far easier to create scapegoats than to blame parents for not ending the cycle of violence. Two things that don't come with instructions are babies and money. Imagine how much better society would be if they actually taught the important things in school."


          I agree with the thought, but have you considered that in a homeschool environment you CAN teach the important things like parenting and finances. If you look at the statistics, homeschooled children have an 80% higher full scholarship rate to colleges than public school students. Why? First there is a one-on-one atmosphere that promotes faster learning (instead of repeating the stuff several times for the two or three kids in the back of the class). Then you have self-paced learning to boot, meaning if a kid obviously understands a subject well s/he will go through it in less time that a public school is required to repeat it.



          "Government big enough to supply everything you need is big enough to take everything you have .... The course of history shows that as a government grows, liberty decreases. -- Thomas Jefferson"


          I think we have had enough examples of that recently to really sound the alarm. 'What's that, you want private property? Well, this company is willing to pay higher taxes on the land so we are going to take it from you.'

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Sean, 4 Apr 2006 @ 3:46am

      Re: Who needs to learn what?

      The problem with the law is the fact that it would just be the start of something. They wouldn't stop there. Eventually they would try to ban violent videogames outright. There is a rating system in place on video games. Parents are the ones to blame! Watch your kids, play games with them, make sure that what they play is appropriate for their age group. People think that tv, movies and video games are good babysitters. Don't just plunk your kids in front of a tv. Spend time with them. You can't blame all problems on the entertainment industry.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Vinnie, 4 Apr 2006 @ 8:41am

      Re: Who needs to learn what?

      The videogame industry already has a self-imposed rating system. If stores don't follow it, or parents don't pay attention to it, it's not the videogame producer's fault.

      I would think that gun's rights advocates would be all over this, remember videogames don't kill people, people kill people.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 4 Apr 2006 @ 10:00am

        Re: Re: Who needs to learn what?

        remember videogames don't kill people, people kill people.

        ...tell that to the kid in china who overdosed on WoW a few months back.... and died.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 4 Apr 2006 @ 11:47am

          Re: Re: Re: Who needs to learn what?

          The video game did not kill that person. That person killed himself because he apparently had something wrong with his brain. There was NOTHING in the game that FORCED him to keep playing.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 3 Apr 2006 @ 7:51pm

    damnit, politicians need to get with the time, set up an agency just for technology, like netforce. they need to know what is going on, figure out the technology issues, like internet, video games, spam, patent issues. then all our taxpayer dollars wont go to waste in court when it could go to something usefull like this agency that has knowledge on the issues

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 3 Apr 2006 @ 8:29pm

    The only thing consistent with people that commit acts of violence is that they are most likely victims of violence themselves. Since things like parenting aren't manditorily taught in most schools it's far easier to create scapegoats than to blame parents for not ending the cycle of violence. Two things that don't come with instructions are babies and money. Imagine how much better society would be if they actually taught the important things in school.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 3 Apr 2006 @ 9:57pm

      Aren't video games just babysitters?

      Parent's need to raise their children; this is not the responsibility of the government.

      child: Dad will you play ball with me?

      dad: Leave me alone, I'm watching Jerry Springer. Go play a video game.

      child: (mumbles under breath) Loser!

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    .treo., 3 Apr 2006 @ 9:18pm

    violence in gaming vs IRL

    uhmm they will ban the sale of a video game to a kid because of its content, but any kid can walk into a store and buy a gun, AFIK, theres no min. age to buy a gun in the states?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Michael, 4 Apr 2006 @ 2:18am

      Re: violence in gaming vs IRL

      The minimum age to buy a firearm in the United States is 18 and 21.

      You must be 18 to buy a rifle, and 21 to buy a pistol.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Arthur, 3 Apr 2006 @ 9:21pm

    video games

    oh my god. leave us kids alone. if you ban video games minors they are ganna grow up to be sissies. there is on guy in florida, shot 20 bullets hit 1 person. he never playe a video game. a kid in highschool shot 5 bullets, killed 7 people. that kid played doom4, and half life, and halo. fuck you fucking politicains, stop it, or your asses will be killed, god damn just give it up. Jails are already overcrowded. if you ban them, come on idiots, you can them illegaly. i know someone who got halo 2 weeks before it came out. so fuck you, there is no way out. i'm ganna kill you with unreal tornament arsonel weapons

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Mike, 3 Apr 2006 @ 9:38pm

      Re: video games

      "oh my god. leave us kids alone. if you ban video games minors they are ganna grow up to be sissies. there is on guy in florida, shot 20 bullets hit 1 person. he never playe a video game. a kid in highschool shot 5 bullets, killed 7 people. that kid played doom4, and half life, and halo. fuck you fucking politicains, stop it, or your asses will be killed, god damn just give it up. Jails are already overcrowded. if you ban them, come on idiots, you can them illegaly. i know someone who got halo 2 weeks before it came out. so fuck you, there is no way out. i'm ganna kill you with unreal tornament arsonel weapons"

      This is the reasons why some kids shouldn't get their hands on violent games. Whatever happened to good ol' spanking to learn some respect?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Mystik, 3 Apr 2006 @ 10:34pm

      Re: video games

      Stupidity like that only comes from no schooling, way too much friggin gaming and leet-speek.....this is the stupidity that the stupid politicians are banking on to get those bills passed.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Eileen, 3 Apr 2006 @ 9:56pm

    funny, #8. very cute. unfortunately, you're just a litte too subtle for this crowd.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Butt Fukula, 3 Apr 2006 @ 9:59pm

    Eat my +7 staff!

    Fuck a bunch of laws trying to fuck up some games.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Arthur, 3 Apr 2006 @ 10:00pm

    The goverment must die

    Im gowing two kil the goverment

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Jimmy Jimmerson, 3 Apr 2006 @ 10:02pm

    Knock Knock

    SHUT UP YOU BUTT FUKULA!!!!!1!one YOU DONT BE KNOWIN STUFF!!1!^ I BET YOU LIKE DUDES TO PLAY WI:TH YOUR JOYSTICK

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Will Smith, 3 Apr 2006 @ 10:05pm

    YO!

    Whut up peeps!? I'm a man in black and a black man! I played GEX on my 3DO for like a week, yo! It was tight like Mary-Kate! Later, I played Mutant League Fooseball! Then, I played some other shit with my ass!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    CYBERDEMON, 3 Apr 2006 @ 10:12pm

    ROAR! ARRR!

    SOME BITCH ASS JUST SHOT ME DICK OFF WITH A BFG. I GOT HARD AND BEAT HIS ASS WITH MY CLUB DICK. I MADE SOME EGGS AND CHILLED WHILE THE DORF LOOKED AT THE PENTAGRAM GOAT ASS TEXTURES AND MADE SOME BACON. HE STARTED WORSHIPPING SATAN AND SUCKING COCK. THEN HE SHOT ME DICK AND BALLS OFF AGAIN WITH A SHOT GUN. HE HELD THE SHOT GUN IN ONE OF HIS LEFT HANDS AND LOADED IT WITH HIS OTHER LEFT HAND. THEN HE ATE ME TWIG AND BERRIES AND JERKED OFF MY NUTSACK. HE STRECHED IT OUT AND JUMPED ROPE WITH IT WHILE HE SHIT ON HIS MOMS BALLS. SHIT WAS GETING IT FROM A MUTANT IMP PENIS WHILE IT DRANK PISS AND SHIT BULLETS. WELL, I GUESS IT'S TIME FOR ME TO SUCK JESUS OFF AND BEAT DAN BROWNS NUTS OFF.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    ass nuts deluxe, 3 Apr 2006 @ 10:17pm

    WHUT UP CRAKA!

    Yo, check it:

    I beat off with pigs blood while playing tetris on CD-i.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Francis Mintits, 3 Apr 2006 @ 10:19pm

    HEY

    I like to make characters in video games look like they're doing it.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Mystik, 3 Apr 2006 @ 10:30pm

    Video games are our friends

    You must understand that if video games can be seen as additives to youth violence, look at movies, and extracirricular sports like football or martial arts or any kind of contact sport. Those could potentially lead to youth violence (only taken from a view of stupid politian pigs).

    I play video games alot. I love the fact that I can do almost anything in them. Video games are like books but are interactive and make your own story.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Prince of Darkness, 3 Apr 2006 @ 10:31pm

    Hey there...

    When I look at pictures of Satan my dick gets hard. I like to turn on the oven range for awhile and then put my nuts on the glowing red element. I usually burn them untill they bleed.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Prince of Darkness, 3 Apr 2006 @ 10:31pm

    Hey there...

    When I look at pictures of Satan my dick gets hard. I like to turn on the oven range for awhile and then put my nuts on the glowing red element. I usually burn them untill they bleed.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    westwind, 4 Apr 2006 @ 12:16am

    Gaming didn't cause those posts...

    ...mothers drinking while pregnant did. It's unfortunate that all gamers get lumped together in the minds of the lawmakers. Yes, you little shits, you're bringing this on yourself, and the rest of us too.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Tin Ear, 4 Apr 2006 @ 12:33am

    Good article, but

    I'm not going to justify most of these replies with anything resembling forethought...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    complete insanity, 4 Apr 2006 @ 1:26am

    stfuartfm

    freedom of speech is freedom of speech, you can't always be there to cover your childrens ears or their eyes. if you would follow your kids that closely they would never grow up anyways and there would only be more problems. it is no surprise that kids today seem so foreign, most parents haven't taken the time to teach them or get to know them. kids today grow up in fantasy and then the lie of what is taught to shelter and keep them safe sets in suddenly and then what you try to say after that is nothing that is to be believed. word of advice...stop lying to your kids.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Andrew Strasser, 4 Apr 2006 @ 2:00am

    Video games are a learning console.

    Though there are those games which seem to be explicit in some ways. I have to say that video games are what teach the younger generation how to use the computers, they will need their entire life, better. This judge has made a very good choice and deserves some credit as he actually researched the subject before jumping into any major decisions like most judges so often do. I think this judge is a credit to the judicial system and wish more judges would take a second and think outside the box.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 4 Apr 2006 @ 3:42am

    ...and what is the minimum age to purchase a shotgun? (which is also a firearm)

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Wizard Prang, 4 Apr 2006 @ 7:01am

    Forget video games...

    ...how do we prevent kids from reading some of the replied on this thread?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    deviantion, 4 Apr 2006 @ 4:13pm

    god knows what

    Hmm, but not that many americans are motivated enough to actually go out and buy a chemistry/math/etc book and learn it for themselves (in no time flat really but anyway). Additionally, there are several fundamental problems with homeschooling as it also creates an environment in which a child could be subjected to subjective subjects, which may not necesarily be bad but it does hinder a child from making his/her own stand on things, based on cold hard facts. Really i think a combination of all 3 of the learning systems should be encouraged as all 3 have their benefits (especially the last one in my opinion)

    BUT, that is completly beside the point

    Ok, so about video games ...
    Sure, if only the average american parent would pay more attention to their children, all would be dandy, but thats not the case. As a result, the government Has to step in to make up for lost ground. Either create local "better-parenting" seminars for new and old mothers alike, which is a more long term plan methinks, Or teach children that the negative behavior shown in video games is well, negative, which could be inserted into any health class.

    O'course, you could always ban exessively violent video games to minors (btw, minors as in 18yr olds? thats a bit harsh .. 16 yr olds are pretty smart kids too), but ... no.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    luser hater, 4 Apr 2006 @ 7:54pm

    It will never work

    The US government can do what it like to rate games there. The vast majority of the people I know, both in school and out of it, did not buy many of thier games, downloading them off the internet and from torrents, and copying them from LANs. Good Luck enforcing all that copying!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    me, 26 Apr 2006 @ 5:43pm

    yup

    exactly, we need technology training, like the existing diversity trainging (pr w/e its called)
    so when a dumbass politician does something stupid like this, hews forced to go there..and maybe be half-a dumbass ^_^

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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