The lights are on
A conservative advocacy group that specializes in filing content complaints to the FCC isn't a big fan of the Brown v. Entertainment Merchants Association decision.
As I'm sure you're aware, earlier today the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a California law barring the sale of violent video games to children on first amendment grounds. The 7-2 decision has irked groups like the Parents Television Council, which has made its mark by monitoring television programming for indecency and filing complaints with the FCC when it comes across a show it deems lewd and lascivious. PTC president Tim Winter issued the following statement in the aftermath of the ruling:
“When an industry trade group files a federal lawsuit to defend a child’s constitutional rights, the alarm bells should be deafening. It is hard to imagine a more cynical proposition. Sadly, today’s ruling proves the United States Supreme Court heard the video game industry loud and clear, but turned a deaf ear to concerned parents. The Court has provided children with a Constitutionally-protected end-run on parental authority.
“This ruling replaces the authority of parents with the economic interests of the video game industry. With no fear of any consequence for violating the video game industry’s own age restriction guidelines, retailers can now openly, brazenly sell games with unspeakable violence and adult content even to the youngest of children.“The carefully-worded California statute would not have interfered in any way with the rights of the creators of adult games or the adults who wish to buy them; and in fact, it would not interfere with parents who wanted to purchase such a game for their children. Rather, the measure only would have prevented an unaccompanied minor child from buying or renting the product. “Countless independent studies confirm what most parents instinctively know to be true: repeated exposure to violent video games has a harmful and long-term effect on children. Despite these troubling findings, video game manufacturers have fought tooth and nail for the ‘right’ to line their pockets at the expense of America’s children. Today, the Supreme Court sided with them and against parents. “We call on the Entertainment Merchants Association to redouble its efforts for increased enforcement of the industry’s age-based vending restrictions. The Federal Trade Commission and the PTC’s own ‘Secret Shopper’ campaigns have routinely demonstrated an abysmal failure rate for video game retailers to uphold the industry’s own age-based restrictions. With the exception of GameStop, many in the video game industry appear to be either unwilling or unable to prevent the sale of M-rated games to kids. Now with no threat of consequence for failure, we are concerned that the self-regulatory efforts will be violated in even greater numbers than they already are. We will be monitoring this very closely.“The Parents Television Council is proud of its unwavering support for California State Senator Leland Yee’s leadership and legislative efforts to protect children. We will continue to use all the resources within our power to call out unscrupulous retailers. If the federal courts won’t stand for parents, then we hope the court of public opinion will.”
What's your take? Is it too much to expect parents to be actively involved in the purchasing decisions of their children?
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I get mad every time I read this stuff. So why do I keep reading? Maybe I'm a glutton for punishment, or maybe I just like ranting about blind stupidity.
Y'know, I have alot to say to these people, but I'm having a good day so far, and really don't want to get into a huge discussion. Simply put, they're being moronic and are talking in circles.
We won, you lost. Go sit in your corner and think about what being a parent means and the responsabilities that go with being one. If you don't want your kid playing a certain type of game, then for Christ's sake, DON'T GET IT FOR THEM! Or when you do get it for them and realize how "horribly violent" it is, please don't blame your mistakes on the videogaming industry. They have enough to deal with.
The ESRB has a fantastic rating system and tells you EXACTLY what the game contains. It's not their fault if you, as the parent, don't have the mental apptitude to read the back of the game yourself. And please don't give us that lame excuse that "repeated exposure to violent video games has a harmful and long-term effect on children." It can't be proven, and is a hollow argument.
geeze, stupid people irritate me.
*talking hand gesture* Blahblahblah...
No, it is not too much to ask they get their heads out of their asses and do their own parenting instead of asking the government to do it for them.
@Dan Rivera - Couldn't have said it better myself. Time to take a long, hard look at their own households and show a little love and attention to their children instead of railing against the gaming industry.
First off, bravo for the court ruling. That type of enforcement isn't necessary.
Second, these are probably the same parents mad when they give their kids money, drop them off at the mall and then go to Spencers. Don't leave your kids unattended if you don't want them going, or in this case buying games, you don't want them to.
It seems to me like these people are trying to hide behind a blanket of blatant misconceptions. The facts seem pretty darn clear to me. If the game is rated M for mature, than it is the parents duty to figure out what is good for your kids or not. These people claim to "stand for parents" but in all actuallity they have no standing on what a parent deems fit for their children. I remember when I was younger, my dad would stand there and buy Call of duty for me, but I was never allowed to play GTA. What it really comes down to is this: these people who file these kinds of complaints feel that violent video games breed violent children. Yet the truth may be very far from that. It just makes me especially mad seeing groups who see it fit to try and take the rights of the parent away.
Concerned parents my ass. Parents are the reason it came to a lawsuit. Parents not caring about what their children play. It really bothers me when other parents try to change things for other kids.
"Countless independent studies confirm what most parents instinctively know to be true: repeated exposure to violent video games has a harmful and long-term effect on children."
I'm really getting tired of hearing things like that. Many, many, many gamers will tell you they have been playing video games for years and they are fine. They are saying repeated exposure to VGs will make something wrong with gamers. Ok. You just told me I have something wrong with me. You don't know me. Isn't that slander towards gamers?
They are just mad that we gamers have a better way of getting away from the stresses in life thsn they do.
This group seems to be missing the point. I think we all agree that these kids shouldn't be playing the super violent video games, and as gamers we don't want to hear them whining on Xbox Live. However, there are already several warnings on the box, and most stores require some sort of ID. If the child somehow still gets the game it's the duty of the PARENT to take it away from him/her or at least limit access.
I don't understand how people are still arguing this; just stop being lazy parents.
That these people call themselves conservative offends me greatly. Conservatives (myself included) are supposed to be strong supporters of the bill of rights, and chiefly the first amendment. These people are hypocrites.
Even with the Supreme Court ruling, businesses are not going to start handing out free copies of GTA IV with every purchase of Cars 2. This merely keeps the government from slapping every business with fines any time one of their employees makes a mistake and sells an M-rated game to a minor. Half of these moral conservatives with the PTC are the same people at Tea Party rallies de-crying "too much government!" Apparently that's not the case when it comes to raising our kids...
I find it ironic that they call it a "strike against parents" when one of the main arguments of the defense was that parents should moniter what their children are playing.
It seems this group wants the government to do the parenting for them.
Also, I laughed at "carefully worded". That's when I lost all respect for this group.
every conservative person can go jump off a bridge. the world doesnt need them
I'm just gonna go ahead and say it. This guy doesn't have a single, solitary clue what the hell he's talking about. Basically, he's saying the Supreme Court decided that any video game, no matter what the content or ESRB rating, is now going to be openly marketed and sold to anyone with money. He's so wrong that he doesn't even know what side of the argument he's on anymore.
For starters, the ESRB rating system, which has been in place and functioning for years, works far better than any other age restricting ratings system in the country. If you look at the stats, T and M rated games are NOT sold to minors who are under the age of the rating system more often than even a minor getting into an R rated movie. There might not be a strict penalty for violating the ESRB ratings, but retailers are aware of and enforce it better than the ticket takers at movie theaters.
Second, no matter what ratings the game has, be it E, T, M, or even AO, it is ALWAYS the parent's responsibility to know what their kids are playing. No court ruling, even this one if it had actually passed, can ever change that. Just because you want to be lazy and let some other medium raise your kids for you doesn't mean that you shouldn't be aware of what that medium contains. No parent would let their 8-year-old kid see, for instance, Nightmare On Elm Street, yet they're letting their kids run around without supervision playing Call of Duty online all the time.
What it comes down to is this: if you're a parent and your kids want to play a video game, it is YOUR responsibility to know the content and rating of the game. No parent is TOO BUSY to know what games their kids are playing. If you think you're too busy then you shouldn't have had kids in the first place because, let's face it, you're not mature enough to be in charge of a human life.