The Byron Review, a study commissioned by the U.K. government into the effects of videogame and online violence on children, is set to be published on March 27.
GamesIndustry reports that Dr. Tanya Byron, the author of the review, and government ministers are expected to meet with the press on the day of the release, although the details of the event have not yet been confirmed. Commissioned in September 2007, the review was widely supported by the U.K. videogame industry because of the wide range of opinions and information it sought, which included input from researchers, videogame developers and publishers as well as children who play games.
While most observers have expressed hope the review will help “legitimize” the industry in the face of criticism and accusations that videogames are harmful to children and society at large, some concern has been expressed that the release of the review will be followed by a crackdown on videogames by the government of Prime Minister Gordon Brown. One anonymous source said the industry’s happiness with Byron’s approach has led to a “definite fear that Brown will aggressively present this to the media and public as ‘we are fighting the industry for your kids’ safety.'”
More information about the Byron Review is available at the Department For Children, Schools and Families website.