U.K. Prime Minister Gordon Brown has said he will study the possibility of implementing new regulations for violent videogames.
A report by the Daily Mirror said Prime Minister Brown is reexamining the possibility of banning violent videogame sales to teenagers. He said he was aware of the “growing concern” about the effect of simulated violence on children, and said new laws covering videogame advertising would also be investigated. The plan would be presented to a “citizen’s jury” which will allow members of the public the opportunity to offer opinions and suggestions on new policies.
“Parents are concerned about whether children are exposed to harmful violence and sexual imagery in video and computer games and on the internet,” Brown said in a speech on Monday. “So as we launch the consultation on our children’s plan we will be looking at all the evidence on the effects of this material; whether we need new rules on the advertising and sale of these products to children and young people; and what more can be done to help parents regulate access to inappropriate material on the internet.”
Videogames in the U.K. are classified under the Pan-European Game Information system, which provides ratings similar to those of the ESRB in North America, but in June the British Board of Film Classification and the Irish Film Censor’s Office both banned Rockstar’s Manhunt 2 for its “unremitting bleakness and callousness of tone.” A partial ban on advertisements for online gambling was also put into place in August.