(May 2003 - March 2007.) Tama's thoughts on the blogosphere, podcasting, popular culture, digital media and citizen journalism posted from a laptop computer somewhere in Perth's isolated, miniature, urban jungle ...

Victoria leads the way on Australian Games Ratings

Wednesday, October 06, 2004
After the banning of the adult oriented game Manhunt, The Age notes that the politicians in Victoria have noticed that the distinct lack of an R18+ category for games is stupidity incarnate:
The Victorian Government wants R ratings to be applied to computer and video games despite the Office of Film and Literature Classification review board banning the controversial video game Manhunt. [...] Under the Victorian proposal, the game could be considered for an R rating, meaning it could be sold or hired out to anyone over 18 years of age. Attorney-General Rob Hulls said the Bracks Government had pushed for uniform laws covering all mediums, but the Howard Government had refused to support the move. R ratings apply for films and literature, but the highest rating for computer and video games is MA15+. The banning of Manhunt last week also prompted the Interactive Entertainment Association of Australia to describe the legislation as socially out of sync. "As part of a national classification regime, the Federal Government needs to act to resolve a clear gap in the system whereby computer games, unlike films, are not subject to R18+ or X18+ ratings," Mr Hulls said. IEAA chief executive Beverly Jenkin said the guidelines failed to recognise that more than 70 per cent of video game players were aged over 18 and 20 per cent aged over 39.
With any luck, the Victorian amendment will pass swiftly, the Office of Film and Literature Classification will see the sense in the amendment, and it will become Federal Law. I suspect that transition might be easier under a Latham-led Labor government (although I'm not 100% sure after Latham's conservatisim in other areas. Still, it's a lot more likely than Menzies Howard seeing sense!) Sadly, I still think that's the only way Western Austalia will get an R18+ game ratings category, because as a whole our state is nothing, if not conservative.


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