New York Law to Block Sales to Minors and Limit Violence

New York Law to Block Sales to Minors and Limit Violence

A series of New York laws plan to ban sales to underage gamers and limit violence presented in games.

A couple of new laws have been proposed to the New York assembly with the goal of limiting sales of violent games to minors.

Assembly Representative Keith Wright proposed bill A00547 to prevent minors from buying games that contain violent crimes, sexual, racial or religious violence, suicide, or the use of illegal drugs. Stores would also be forced to feature an "Adults Only" section that could only be accessed by those over 30 years of age. Rep. Aurelia Greene offered a similar bill that covers titles that feature "adult images such as morbid violence, rape, alcohol and illegal drug use, as well as other malicious acts."

Recently, the court system has been supportive of the industry and has stopped the majority of anti-game legislation. Judge Kennelly of Illinois has even recently forced the state to repay legal fees incurred by the ESA when Illinois attempted to force legislation through the system.

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I'm against the bill - but you are misreading the text of the bill in the 30yr old part. It's an adults only section that is only accessible by people over 18 with ID and anyone who "reasonably looks over 30 years old". It does go on to say that such a distinction is no defense in the sale of a video-game to a minor who happens to look over 30.

An interesting note - they refer to video games as "videos" in the bill text too. Further proving that our government doesn't quite understand the differences between the mediums of film and game.

The bill is well intentioned and while I have no issue displaying my ID to get to a "mature" video game section, the ratings system is self imposed, and I fear such laws would cause video game producers to try and reach the same "Rated R" problem the movie industry has, it would end up becoming another form of censorship. (The games which were rated V or M or however it wanted to classify them for the section would end up seeing poorer sales to limited visibility in stores, some stores may choose not to even carry them. (Think, is Walmart really going to make an adults only section inside their store?) It's not a solution to the problem, and no-one really wants to take the responsibility for raising children or accepting that even children are responsible for their actions.

TomBeraha:
It's not a solution to the problem, and no-one really wants to take the responsibility for raising children or accepting that even children are responsible for their actions.

I agree. Is it really that hard for parents to keep mature rated games out of their kids hands?

1. Children under 16 do not drive.
2. Most children under 16 do not have a job
3. Kids under 18 cannot get a credit card
4. Most game stores will not sell mature games to minors

So, for a kid to get a copy of a mature game they need a ride, some money, and a store clerk willing to sell them the game. A parent could easily stop their kid from getting a mature game by simply not taking them to the store or not giving them the money to buy the game. If they fail, the clerk probably will not sell it to them.

Another question...do parents really care?

The number of kids I encounter on Xbox Live is staggering. I bet most parents just go ahead and buy their kids the game they want and move on without much concern. I have a feeling that it is a vocal minority pushing for these game rating laws. Probably the same people decrying the death of family values and society's downward spiral into moral corruption. As for the rest...People will support just about any cause that constantly trumpets, "what about the children? Who is protecting or children? WE MUST SAVE THE CHILDREN!!"

http://www.theonion.com/content/node/34213

A lot of the issues that we deal with regularly regarding children could be averted if people were better at remembering that "parent" can be a verb and a noun.

Though it's not just in parenting that our species seems to have trouble taking responsibility. I for one would love to see someone take credit for their situation, the good and the bad. You are where you are as the direct result of the choices you made. If you're letting other people make your choices for you, then you have still made a choice, and are still responsible for your situation. There is no exception to this.

 

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