EU Tells Videogame Industry To Protect Children; Doesn't Explain From What

from the disconnect dept

Just as even more research is coming out showing the lack of any evidence that playing violent video games leads to violent activities, it appears that EU politicians have decided that they don't care about the facts, but will simply go with the false fears that the video games are dangerous. The EU has now warned the industry that it needs to come up with a way to keep the games out of the hands of kids, within the next two years. At least that's better than just coming out with a new law, but it does seem misguided (especially given the evidence). Besides, what's wrong with parents determining what's okay for their kids to play?

Filed Under: eu, europe, protect the children, violent video games


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  • identicon
    geh, 23 Apr 2008 @ 8:04pm

    geh

    just what we need, another round of this tirade about legislating morality...

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

  • identicon
    Madfoot713, 23 Apr 2008 @ 8:09pm

    Or else?

    I have a question: what if they don't find a better way? No more videogames? Honestly, what are they going to do?

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

  • identicon
    Dkp, 23 Apr 2008 @ 8:22pm

    It should not be the industries problem is the parents

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 23 Apr 2008 @ 8:26pm

    This is a broad paintbrush "warning" which is about as useful as a wet napkin against a bullet. Game developers who push the edge of social acceptance (Take Two and RockStar specifically) "should" be the only people really worried. Unfortunately someone in the law making division needs to understand the Streisand effect since all this type of undefined nonsense does is give game developers free advertising and they will USE it because no matter what, more advertising means more sales.

    Most games have a two week self life before being relegated to "one box on display" at most. Someone compared this to a book store at one point, you can find 10 year old books in a bookstore but you can't find a year old game in an game store. So, this sort of "vague" thing is going to become nothing more than a marketting item for some folks in terms that they are "controvisial" and the Streisand effect will kick in to generate more interrest than is really deserved.

    I guarantee my current game will be less than a stellar fit for "protect the children", the content is based on an IP which is really dark and not "currently socially allowed". But that is how the story has been told to millions of fans over many years via books and role playing systems so I want to cater to those folks. In order to cater to the people who know/follow the given storyline am I now supposed to water everything down to "protect the children"?

    As with the past, this is the sort of law/suggestion/whatever which governments make which simply open everyone up to lawsuits. Your story is not nice, I think I'll sue you because I thought it was offensive. We'll turn that into a class action because character A was kinda redish and that is offensive to XYZ group.

    Any type of "generalized" item such as this simply opens up yet another industry to lawyers with no morals who will chase ambulences. Oh, damn, guess Jack Thomson isn't all that bad..

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

  • identicon
    Sean, 23 Apr 2008 @ 9:00pm

    "Facts?"

    As much as you usually make incredibly valid, well articulated points, this is just you trying to be somewhat hyperbolic in using the word "facts." These studies do not produce facts, they produce results, and these results are not facts - they are data. Your wording with "facts" is a poor attempt at trying to make the EU look like they ignore fact, while in reality they ignore studies done on children about video games. Frankly, to call it a "fact" that it hasn't been shown in x amount of studies that games cause violence is silly, because if it has happened in one child ever, then it isn't a fact.

    You can call this nitpicking, but I consider it a pretty amateur move to try to call these results "facts" and try to prove your point with it.

    You make too many great points to let yourself fall to this. You may want to say "studies" or "experiments", but they are far from "facts".

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

    • identicon
      SomeGuy, 24 Apr 2008 @ 5:28am

      Re: "Facts?"

      "Frankly, to call it a "fact" that it hasn't been shown in x amount of studies that games cause violence is silly, because if it has happened in one child ever, then it isn't a fact."

      So, let me get this straight. You hold that if one kid at one time plays video games and then acts violently, it's a fact that video games cause violent behavior -- but it's not a fact that they don't despite hundreds of thousands of kids playing video games and NOT becoming violent constantly? Is something only a fact if it agrees with your point of view?

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

      • identicon
        Sean, 24 Apr 2008 @ 6:50am

        Re: Re: "Facts?"

        Well, basically, yes. If they say as a fact, which means it is true and 100% accurate, video games have no link to violence, and then in just one case it does have a link...then it is not a fact.

        It's just silly to call it a fact.
        "JFK was assassinated Nov. 22, 1963." Is anybody going to not call this a fact?

        "Video games do not cause any violence whatsoever in any child ever, as has been proven by studies on several thousand (out of hundreds of millions) of kids." haha, you want to call this a fact?

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

        • identicon
          SomeGuy, 24 Apr 2008 @ 9:16am

          Re: Re: Re: "Facts?"

          No, though I'll not that in your subtle claim that these studies haven't covered a sufficient population of the children in the world that you casually ignore basic rules of statistics.

          So, here's the thing. One said says, Video Games Cause Violence! The other side says, the research doesn't show that: there's no link. YOU say that if some violent kid plays video games, that OBVIOUSLY refutes all that research. And what's more, the EU isn't even saying that, they're just holding to the fact that video games are dangerous.

          There's no evidence that playing violent video games leads to violent behavior: THAT I will call a fact, and it will remain so until refuted.

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

    • identicon
      oregonnerd, 24 Apr 2008 @ 11:00am

      Re: "Facts?" and empiricism

      If you're going to use the empirical model, there is no such thing as a fact, there's a lack of disproof. "Cause" and "effect" are after all hypotheses. The empirical model was constructed in order to have what amounted to a simple test of "truth" and was in fact originally constructed as an engineering tool. "Science" when applied to the social sciences means accepting a number of assumptions--things that haven't even made it to hypothesis level.

      As for your use of English... "As much as you usually make incredibly valid,"...that "as much as" should probably be an "although".
      --Glenn

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

  • identicon
    Stefan Mai, 23 Apr 2008 @ 10:17pm

    I'm so sick of the slashdot "Besides, what's wrong with parents determining what's okay for their kids to play?" mentality. Simple fact: lots of kids live with very little parental interaction nowadays. More than ever. That means, "what's wrong" has a simple answer: "they don't". That doesn't justify getting the government involved, but this logic is just disgusting.

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

    • identicon
      ToySouljah, 23 Apr 2008 @ 10:37pm

      Re:

      You are right the government should not get involved. The industry should not get involved either. The parents should...if they do not want their kids playing a game because of its content....do your job and don't let them play it...or at least explain that it is a game and that they can't go around and kill people and wait for them to get up or spawn somewhere. Parents are always up in arms about their kids doing stuff and looking for someone to point the finger at. They need to stop pointing the finger and learn to discipline and teach their children. If they are not up to the task then they do not need to be having children. Also, who is buying the games? I don't know many kids with $50 or $60 to blow on a game. So if a parent buys the game without even knowing what it is then they are again ignoring their children. Read a review or look (and understand) the rating. If you buy a game for a 12yo that is rated MA (for lets say violence, strong language, etc) then you have no one to blame but yourself since you have basically consented to the purchase. It is not the peoples job at the game store to warn you either since most parents do not really care to hear about a rating system...they just want their kid to "shut up" about buying it. So as parents we need to take control of our kids and not pass it off to the TV, government, or the video game industry...it isn't their job or responsibility...it's ours.

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

    • identicon
      Gunnar, 24 Apr 2008 @ 4:46am

      Re:

      Simple fact: lots of kids live with very little parental interaction nowadays

      Not the gaming industry's problem.

      Personally, I'd much rather have the kids with little supervision in their homes playing GTA or Manhunt 2 than out with their friends bored and looking for something to break.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 24 Apr 2008 @ 5:31am

      Re:

      It's not that "let parents raise their kids" is disgusting logic, but the fact that parents don't. That's disgusting. At best we're treating the symptom. If Politicians want someone to go after, start making parents liable for the bad behavior of their children, rather than the gaming industry.

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

  • identicon
    Jamie, 24 Apr 2008 @ 3:07am

    Video game violence

    I just read that the most popular video game in history is Sim City. That's got to say something. The marketplace has spoken and they've said that violence isn't king. There are bad books, bad movies and yes, bad video games. Give people a little more credit, they'll buy what they want. As they obviously have.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 24 Apr 2008 @ 5:32am

      Re: Video game violence

      Yeah, Sim City was great. You could build up a nice city and then level it with earthquakes and fires and tonadoes... Destruction on a massive scale. Wonderful.

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

  • icon
    Killer_Tofu (profile), 24 Apr 2008 @ 5:38am

    Re #12 AC

    Don't forget, you could call in Godzilla too!
    That was my favorite.

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

  • identicon
    James, 24 Apr 2008 @ 7:21am

    BARF

    I get really, really sick of hearing about things we must do "for the children", or to "protect the childrent". Give me a F***ING break; adults live in this world, too.

    If you want to protect the children keep them at home in a locked box and leave the rest of us the F*** alone.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 24 Apr 2008 @ 9:18am

      Re: BARF

      "If you want to protect the children keep them at home in a locked box and leave the rest of us the F*** alone."

      What you and the governments fail to realize is that this will not protect the children, because children will eventually become adults and will have significant issues when they find that the world is not, in fact, just their locked box.

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

  • identicon
    James, 24 Apr 2008 @ 7:22am

    ,,and

    apparently I can't spell children. LOL

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

  • identicon
    oregonnerd, 24 Apr 2008 @ 11:02am

    politicians and "facts"

    Since when were politicians supposed to tell the truth? Wine and circuses!!
    --Glenn

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

  • identicon
    Bat17, 24 Apr 2008 @ 11:56am

    Video or Games

    The EU accepts that there is no conclusive evidence that the games cause problems, but prefer to err on the side of caution.
    This is not about banning the games, it is about clearly classifying them and publicizing the standards used.

    There seems to be no arguments about legal classification systems for DVD's so why not for games?

    -- peter

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

  • identicon
    Sean, 24 Apr 2008 @ 1:05pm

    Facts

    Anybody trying to say it is a fact video games do not cause violence is being silly. Anybody saying video games do cause violence is being silly. Anybody trying to say that one piece of technology can make all children behave a certain way is silly. I don't understand why people try to draw conclusions about something that pertains to hundreds of millions of children. To say it will not lead to violence ever in a child is just stupid.

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

  • identicon
    Some kid, 31 Mar 2010 @ 5:01am

    If anything...

    If anything video games let me be violent on them so I'm not in real life. :)

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


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