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A Decrease in M-Rated Sales to Kids 118

Posted by Zonk
from the laudible dept.
hammersuit writes "GameDaily Biz reports on a new undercover FTC study. From the article: 'Forty-two percent of the secret shoppers - children between the ages of 13 and 16 - who attempted to buy an M-rated video game without a parent were able to purchase one. In the 2003 shop, 69 percent of the shoppers were able to buy one. National sellers were much more likely to restrict sales of M-rated games. Only 35 percent of the secret shoppers were able to purchase such games there. Regional or local sellers sold M-rated games to the shoppers more frequently - 63 percent of the time.'"
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A Decrease in M-Rated Sales to Kids

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  • by Qzukk (229616) on Monday April 03, 2006 @12:36PM (#15051126) Journal
    What a useless study! Who cares about this M-Rated thing? How are the politicians supposed to use this information when they're trying to push their laws calling for bans of "violent" and "offensive" games to minors?

    We need a new study, counting the number of "violent" and "offensive" games sold to minors, where "violent" and "offensive" is properly defined... by taking the people selling the games to court over and over until the prosecution gets a jury that will agree that the game is violent or offensive!
    • Nobody is attempting to BAN violent video games. I'm sure some would like to, but now the issue is keeping them from being purchased by minors. Regardless of how YOU think a game should be rated, this in no way affects your ability as a parent to buy the game for your child, if you in fact think that it is appropriate. Nothing is being banned, and nobody is telling you what you can and cannot buy for you, or for your child.

      This study IS relevant, to see if the rating system, and the policies of retailers ar
      • Nobody is attempting to BAN violent video games.

        I know Jack Thompson is a real nobody, but you don't always have to be so mean to him.

      • "Nothing is being banned, and nobody is telling you what you can and cannot buy for you, or for your child."

        Nothing is currently banned and no one is currently telling me what I can and cannot buy. That is different from what could take shape if there is government involvement in the whole system. Dream with me for a moment:

        1. Selling alcohol to minors is illegal.
        2. Supplying alcohol to a minor is illegal, even if you're the parent.

        1. Selling violent games to minors is illegal.
        2. Supplying violent gam

        • 2. Supplying alcohol to a minor is illegal, even if you're the parent.

          In many states, it is actually legal to serve alcohol to your own children (or to an underage spouse.)
          • In a FEW states, it is actually legal. And then it could still be illegal based on local ordinance. And it could still be considered to fall under something vauge like "child abuse".

            But just because something is legal, doesn't mean you can't be arrested, convicted, and go to jail for it!
            • But just because something is legal, doesn't mean you can't be arrested, convicted, and go to jail for it!

              You got some splainin to do
              • Woman's 'crime' was never illegal
                By Ellen Miller, Special to the News
                November 16, 2005

                GRAND JUNCTION - Allysan Isaac, 24, was held nearly a year in work release for something that a judge said Tuesday was not even illegal.

                "You were incarcerated for a case that was not a crime," said Mesa County District Judge Brian Flynn, who presided over the case.

                Flynn, the prosecutor and Isaac's defense attorney were unaware last year that the offense she was charged with was not a violation of the law.

                No one had noticed
          • That doesn't really have anything to do with my main point though.
        • If the Video Game industry would actually do something about vendors who sold to minor there would be no reason for the Government to step in.

          "You sold an M rated game to our secret shopper/minor. Guess what we're pulling all our M and T rated games from your shelves. No GTA and Halo for you, good luck selling the latest My little ponies game while the store across the street sells twice as much on AAA title release days."

          I guarantee you'd see it getting enforced right quick.
          • I can't imagine that being too effective with vendors who sell only used games.

            I'd also like to know how this study compares with a study of places that sell R-rated and unrated DVDs to the same age group.
          • by (A)*(B)!0_- (888552) on Monday April 03, 2006 @04:06PM (#15052885)
            "If the Video Game industry would actually do something about vendors who sold to minor there would be no reason for the Government to step in."
            Even if the ratings aren't enforced and retailers sell AO, M, or T games to children, I am not convinced the government has any place in legislating. You see, at the end of the day, the games are rated. Parents have the tools needed to determine what is appropriate content for their child. In expecting 100% of the stores to not sell to minors, you are furthering the expectation that many parents have that society is going to watch our for their kids. This expectation is part of the reason that so many parents do a rather poor job of raising their kids. The idea that their kids will be taken by the safeguards the government has put in place makes some parents believe they can just let their duties slide.

            Don't rely on the store to not sell games to your kids. Don't expect others to take care of raising and protecting your kids. Do it yourself.

            • I agree that no matter what the government has no business in trying to control the sale of games. Perhaps I should have rephrased it

              "If the Video Game industry would actually do something about vendors who sold to minor there the Government would have no excuse to step in."

              I completely agree that parents should keep a close eye on their children, but stuff like the ESRB ratings are there as a tool for parents to help them make more informed decisions by quickly and easily determining the type of cont
              • "If the ESRB ratings arn't enforced then it undermines whatever parental decisions are being made because it gives the child the option of buying the game without the parent's consent."

                This is where you and I disagree. I think that a parent who provides housing for a child should have enough control and have instilled rules into a child's head so that they won't buy games that they know they are not supposed to. Your demand that all vendors adhere to the ESRB 100% of the time is both unreasonable and enco

                • I supposed you'd also be ok if the Movie Theater let your kid into the R or NC17 film after you thought you were dropping them off there for a PG, or if the convinenece store at the mall sold them cigarettes while they were there with friends?

                  I'm not saying society needs to look after your kids, but there are certain rules that stores, theaters, whathave you need to follow to help enforce whatever parental decisions are being made.
                  • "I supposed you'd also be ok if the Movie Theater let your kid into the R or NC17 film after you thought you were dropping them off there for a PG, or if the convinenece store at the mall sold them cigarettes while they were there with friends?"

                    Those are different examples and not really relevant to a much higher priced item that is brought into the home where the parent lives. The example of cigarettes is one where I support government control of its sale. Cigarettes represent a documented health risk an

                    • You still don't get what I'm saying do you?

                      Let me make this clear:
                      I COMPLETELY AGREE THAT THE GOVERNMENT HAS NO BUSINESS CONTROLLING THE SALE OF VIDEO GAMES OR ENFORCING ESRB RATINGS.

                      I've held this opinion since my FIRST POST, go back and read it.

                      The reason the Theater ratings are enforced is because back when they first started using them the MPAA would pull it's movies from any theater who refused to enforce it.
                      THIS IS EXACTLY WHAT I'M PROPOSING FOR THE VIDEO GAME INDUSTRY.

                      I never said the Go
      • ... and nobody is telling you what you can and cannot buy for you, or for your child.

        Unless, of course, you're under 18, like I was about 1.5 years ago.
      • but now the issue is keeping them from being purchased by minors.

        Thus bans of selling violent and offensive games to minors?

        Regardless of how YOU think a game should be rated

        I don't care how the games are rated. The problem is that so far every law that has been passed (and subsequently killed) has refused to admit that a rating system exists, instead choosing to use vague language that will inevitably create another "Miller-test" situation where the pimply teens working the cash register will have an arre
      • Well, no it doesn't tell if the policies are "working". It tells to what degree they are being enforced. In order to know if they are working, we would first need to know what the work is that they are supposed to be doing.

        If your 13 year old kid can make it to the mall, spend 50 bucks, and play an entire video game in your house without you ever knowing about it, chances are you have much worse things to worry about than whether they're running the hot coffee mod.

      • I would argue that the current situation is silly regulation by a percieved majority.

        Basically yes its true, the ratings are voluntary. At least in name. In truth, they are voluntary in the way that paying your mortgage is voluntary; sure you are free to not pay it, but if you don't, then the bank is going to take your house away and sell it to someone else. Entirely voluntary no?

        Why? Well how did this voluntary regulation come about? Basically congress threatened legislation, which may or may not have pass
    • If I had mod points, I'd mod you funny. It was meant to be funny, right?
    • Do we need to put (sarcasm) tags around text now? I was actually hoping the average /. reader manages to tell a (true) flamebait from an (exaggerated) sarcastic message. Appearantly ... not.

      Then again, I'd only have to read a few of my less serious and more sarcastic contributions to find that out.

      Yeah, mod me flamebait. THIS time at least it fits.
  • Um... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by GundamFan (848341) on Monday April 03, 2006 @12:46PM (#15051218)
    Anyone else see it as a good thing that the kids can't get these games without parental permission?

    I could care less what people do to rase there own kids but it should be there choice. If a kid can only buy an M-rated game with a parent present then it is no ones responsability but the parent.

    Selective parental apathy is the biggest "ill of scociety" in my opinion... if you don't care to control your childs purchaseing you don't get to try to get "violent" video games ban for the sake of your children.
    • Shitty parents are going to give in when their kid starts crying for CorpseFucker3D, anyway.

      "If a kid can only buy an M-rated game with a parent present then it is no ones responsability but the parent."

      Parental responsibility *is* the nurture that fucks children up, not the games themselves.
      • Ok good point, how is that diffrent from anything else?

        It isn't, that is my point.

        Video games are no diffrent than TV, movies, books, magazines or any other kind of media. They all have the same potental for harm as well as good. Just having a parent care about the wellbeing of there child and do something about it (personaly, not try to make others do it for them) is a step in the right direction, and leting your child behave like the dominant member of the relationship at a young age is a big leap in the
        • Video games are no diffrent than TV, movies, books, magazines or any other kind of media.

          Sure they are. There is no imminent risk that the sale of TV, movies, books, magazines, or any other kind of media will be regulated by ratings.

          • TV & magizines already have ratings.

            Jaysyn
            • Re:Um... (Score:3, Insightful)

              by Pxtl (151020)
              The keyword is *regulated* - the ratings of movies, for example, is entirely voluntary.

              imho, any legislation that targets the games industry and ignores other forms of media is being made simply because the games industry is a convenient scapegoat. If this legislation were seriously aimed at fixing a problem, it would never specifically mention games, but instead of would focus on a general policy that could be applied across all media - novels, comics, games, movies, TV, etc.
            • Re:Um... (Score:3, Insightful)

              by hunterx11 (778171)
              Although obscenity (and during the day, indecency) is banned from broadcast television, there are no laws which require ratings to be applied in such a manner that children may not view programs of a certain rating without parental consent. I don't know what magazine ratings you're speaking of, but I know of no laws which prohibit the sale of magazines to children based on any ratings. Furthermore, the rating system for movies is enforced voluntarily, not by law.

              You could argue that pornography cannot be

        • Whereas I like the idea that this puts the responsibility on the parent, it does suggest a potential "camel nose in the tent" kinda problem in that if this law pertaining solely to videogames becomes reality, someone could then use arguments similar to yours to generalize the law to other media. This is not an unusual strategy for patient people who want to enact major changes to the law. First pass a law aimed at something easy to demonize and then once it is passed and accepted as a legitimate law, go o
      • Shitty parents are going to give in when their kid starts crying for CorpseFucker3D, anyway.

        I hear Uwe Boll is already working on a film adaptation of that one.
    • In my opinion, a child in possession of X dollars, where X dollars equals the price of a desired video game, constitutes parental permission. It's not a matter of saying that parents "should" be responsible, it is a matter of stating the *fact* that parents *are* responsible. If a child cannot be trusted to make a purchase, then it should not be given responsibility to handle money.

      Let's look at this another way. Retailer-based rating/permission systems are flawed because they do not in any way consider
      • Re:Um... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by RingDev (879105) on Monday April 03, 2006 @01:14PM (#15051507) Homepage Journal
        I had my first job at 13. And I am guessing my child will also get a job over his youthful summers. So you are suggesting that I should instill responsibility in my child by making them get a job, then taking any money they earn from them to prevent them from ever having the posibility to make a mistake with that money? That is hardly a way to raise a child. Children need to be free enough to make mistakes and learn from them while parent stand ready to guide and catch their child when they make a poor decision. If my child takes his money to a store I would prefer to know that the store is not selling my child violent video games. If I feel that my son is mature enough to handle playing violent video games, then I will buy the game with or for him. If I do not feel my son is mature enough to play violent video games then I will not buy the game, and if I find it on a PC in the house, I will remove it.

        Using your logic we should do away with the drinking, smoking restrictions, and are requirements for drivers licenses and porno. Because hey, if your parent(s) taught you right, your age wouldn't matter. Now tell me, how many 13 year olds would you hand the keys to your car to? Especially if they had a cig hanging off their lip and a 1/5th of tequila in a brown paper bag?

        -Rick

        -Rick
        • Re:Um... (Score:4, Insightful)

          by G)-(ostly (960826) on Monday April 03, 2006 @01:57PM (#15051921) Journal
          Soooo....

          It's society's responsibility to both employ your offspring as a responsible young adult... and restrict your same offspring as an irresponsible child when using his or her earned income to make entertainment decisions?

          That is the most absurd thing I have ever seen in my life.

          Using your logic we should do away with the drinking, smoking restrictions, and are requirements for drivers licenses and porno.

          Ah, yes. The ol' slashdot analogy. Despite the fact that drinking and smoking both cause chronic, potentially fatal diseases, and that driving before being fully equipped is a good way to get killed, or kill other people, go ahead and compare that to, for example, watching a cartoon zombie eat people which, to the best of my knowledge, can't cause any liver diseases or cancer, or run over the neighbor's dog.

          As far as porn, that's just puritan nonsense. I don't care if your kid buys porn. Like the rest of the responsibility you're trying to shirk, I shouldn't be the one that has to enforce that rule. Don't want your kid to buy porn or Stubbs? Tell him or her that. Don't trust them to listen to you? Then the kid's not responsible enough to hold a job anyway, so don't let them have one.
          • "It's society's responsibility to both employ your offspring as a responsible young adult..."

            No, it is my son's responsibility to himself and to society to be a productive member of the society in which he lives.

            "and restrict your same offspring as an irresponsible child when using his or her earned income to make entertainment decisions?"

            All societies, cultures, and sub-cultures have acceptable norms. Whether you as an individual accept those norms or not is irrelevant. The question then becomes a matter o
          • Ahh! Slash dot ate my post. Damn it. I'm not retyping that thing. Suffice it to say that I have my opinion and you have yours.

            -Rick
            • Or maybe it didn't. Stupid 'error has occurred' message.

              -Rick
            • P[pre].S. I am not implying on if violence, et. al. is good, only on whether it should be legislated.

              I always, for non-trivial posts, crtl-c it.
              Every once in a while I get my comment back lost after a fail.

              As for your comment, the only thing I am against is arbitrary age values.
              The parent should know but younger people who happen to not have been on Earth for a few billion miles around shouldn't be "punished" becase of kids who can't handle it.
              I can't think of a remedy that prevents age discrimition AND all
              • "I can't think of a remedy that prevents age discrimition AND allows parents more control though."

                In the absence of a clear and logical option, society will choose and arbitrary number of their own liking. In the US, that number for the most part is 18. Not saying it is right or good, just that society will create a norm when a need is determined.

                "I am 28 but have thought this way since 10. I could have been biased then and just carried it over these last 2 decades."

                I used to be a very stubern person, I sti
      • Re:Um... (Score:2, Insightful)

        by itscolduphere (933449)

        In my opinion, a child in possession of X dollars, where X dollars equals the price of a desired video game, constitutes parental permission. It's not a matter of saying that parents "should" be responsible, it is a matter of stating the *fact* that parents *are* responsible. If a child cannot be trusted to make a purchase, then it should not be given responsibility to handle money.

        And if the child only has X dollars in his hands because he managed to skim that money from several smaller amounts that wer

        • This may not be the perfect solution; but you shouldn't, in general, pass up better to wait for perfect.

          But what about this case, where we're talking about passing up awful to wait for useful?

          I don't want the responsibility of raising your kids. I don't care how hard a job you think it is - you were free to not fuck back when you spawned the little hellions. Now it's your problem. I will reject every effort you put forth to share that responsibility.

          You don't like my attitude? Too bad. I don't have c
          • "I don't want the responsibility of raising your kids.... I don't have children because I don't want to deal with these issues."

            So you don't want to be responsible for raising my kid, and you have no kids of your own, despite your rather ridiculous tone, I would guess you are 17+ years old, which would mean these restrictions have no bearing on you. Unless you are working as a register clerk for a retail store, in which case, you will politely shut the hell up and ring the register like the manager told you
            • I would guess you are 17+ years old, which would mean these restrictions have no bearing on you.

              See First they came for the Communists... [wikipedia.org] for the rebuttal to that line of thinking.

              • Yes, isn't that nice. We shouldn't have any laws because in a system where checks and balances can be abused they absolutely will.

                For instance, we shouldn't support laws against murder, because some day they'll come for those who think about murder, and then some day they come for those who are predisposed to murder, and eventually they'll come for the rest...

                In this case, nothing is being outlawed. Nothing is being removed from society. The only issue at stake is whether or not consumer retail stores are r
      • In the end, the most objective judgment as to whether Junior can buy a certain game comes when the parent puts X dollars in his little hands.

        But if the parents don't give Junior X dollars, then [he/she]'ll just resort to prostitution and selling drugs to get the money. Or so I learned from watching Lifetime.

    • Re:Um... (Score:2, Interesting)

      by pla (258480)
      Anyone else see it as a good thing that the kids can't get these games without parental permission?

      No, and not for the obvious "Stick it to da man" reason...

      Parents have the responsibility of teaching their kids to do the right thing not just in a safe, isolated environment, but on their own and with temptation aplenty.

      It might make it easier to look like a good parent if Little Billy never even has the opportunity to drink, smoke, swear, or look at porn, but it doesn't teach Billy anything at all (o
      • Personally, I see a kid buying a video-game his parents wouldn't approve of as a WONDERFUL opportunity to teach him a hell of a lesson - When the parents catch him with it, they can make him take it and put it in the shredder page by page, disc by disc, destroying 50+ dollars of his own hard-earned money. You just don't get that same kind of lesson from a shopkeeper telling him to take a hike.

        Yes. The lesson clearly is "Dad's a facist."
    • Anyone else see it as a good thing that the kids can't get these games without parental permission?

      To the slashdot crowd: Those below 18 PLEASE refrain from answering this question. ;-)
    • Re:Um... (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Starsmore (788910)
      "Anyone else see it as a good thing that the kids can't get these games without parental permission?"

      Nope.

      Because the laws keeping GTA:San Andreas from the hands of children are one stepped removed from the laws keeping GTA:San Andreas out of the hands of adults, simply because the politicians disapprove of them.

      Every single law that they try to pass about keeping games 'away' from kids isn't about the kids. It's about the fact that the religious right (or is it left? All the same lately) disapproves of suc

  • What about movies? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by faloi (738831) on Monday April 03, 2006 @12:48PM (#15051246)
    Have they done a similar study for movies? My contention has been that actors and actresses tend to put a lot of money in politicians pockets, so that branch of the entertainment industry gets a free ride. I'd like to know if underage people are able to get into R-rated movies and/or buy parental warning lyrics-labeled CD's with the same frequency. As far as I know, movie theaters tend to do some checking but buying CD's is a free-for all.
    • by shotfeel (235240)
      I do remember seeing something about that which stated movie theatres do a much better job. But then I often wonder if a big part of that is that there aren't very many separate companies showing movies. When its down to just a few chains, all you have to do is make it a well-entrenched company policy in those chains to make it work. So if you RTFA you find the big retail chains (equivalent to the big movie chains) do a much better job of "policing" themselves when it comes to selling M rated video games. I
      • Actually, the movie industry problem is just harder to detect... ignorance is bliss.

        A kid goes to movie multiplex, purchases their ticket, and then walks from the theater with the G rated movie to the theater with the R rated movie. They usually take tickets at the entrance to the movie theaters to the consession stand, not at the door of each theater. As long as the usher doesn't question anyone, all is good (and hell, I haven't seen an usher walk the isles in about 10 years, as long as kids are quiet they
    • by Anonymous Coward
      The movie theater I worked for, for two years, was draconian about restricting underagers from rated R movies. It was a fairly strict rule that no children under 12 - no matter what - were allowed in after 6PM. People in a rated R film typically don't want little kids screaming and crying and crapping their pants in the middle of a film. The managers were always looking for people trying to bypass the ticket taker, and if they spotted someone they'd go yank em out of a movie.

      Ushers, especially on new releas
      • Ushers, especially on new release rated R films, would take tickets at the door and check IDs of everyone who looked under 30..... Working in the box office, I checked the ID of everyone under 30 - unless they were getting a student discount with a college ID.



        And people under 30 still patronized this theater? I'm surprised.

    • Yes, they do card at movies. They started doing that in the early 90s.
  • It seems now-adays that the only ratings that are being given out are ether M or E... i mean what's a kid to do... Another question is does anyone care if kids are getting AO games (however few of them there are). Isn't M and AO the same thing in a way, i mean you have to be 18 or with someone 18 to get ether, at least this is how it was for me. I mean shesh
    • I was in a Best Buy yesterday looking at PSP games and I noticed a mother pushing a son in a stroller and another kid of about 9 and she had GTA: Liberty City Stories in her hand. She was going to buy it for the 9 year old. Personally, I think there's only so much legislators can expect these ratings to do, and then they just have to let it go because they've given parents the information and the rest belongs out of their hands.

      • Just curious, how do you know it was for the 9 year old? Could have been for her, her husband, an older child who didn't want to be seen shopping with mom (or in a different part of the store), or a gift for someone completely different.

        For example, after trawling the cheap bins after Christmas, my 9 year old and I walked up to the register with 3 games for the Playstation. One (for me) was rated M. The cashier did mention to me the game was rated "M for mature", which at first surprised me, but on further
    • Actually M rated games are for people 17 years of age and older while AO rated games are for people 18 years of age and older.
       
        The difference is generally nudity, because it's okay to kill at 17, but screwing before 18 is immoral.
      • Actually M rated games are for people 17 years of age and older while AO rated games are for people 18 years of age and older.

        That's partly correct.

        While the numerical values are correct, 'M' means that it should not be sold to people under 17. It is not solid and is mallable (e.g. if a 16-year old acts highly mature or casually states that he needs to get hands on a gaming engine for programming). At worst, a clerk may have a meeting with a manager which is just a coaching session at worst - usually th

    • It seems now-adays that the only ratings that are being given out are ether M or E...

      Yes, a very disturbing trend, visible in Kingdom Hearts II:

      Besides typical English localization, the English version of Kingdom Hearts II differs from the original Japanese version.

      * The Hydra has its green blood from the Japanese version changed into black and purple smoke in the English version.

      * Xigbar's telescopic sight view has been edited from the Japanese version to replace its crosshair with three

  • by smaerd (954708) on Monday April 03, 2006 @12:53PM (#15051285)
    ..why, when I was their age we didn't have no 'Hot Coffee' or Grand Theft Auto 3: San Andreas! All we had was pixelated blood and gore in Wolfenstein3D and we LIKED IT! They should stop hollerin' about wantin' M-Rated games and do what kids are supposed to do: Download pr0n off of the internet!
    • You had pixelated gore?! LUXURY! When I was a kid, if you wanted gore, you had to go out and beat up someone!

      Never underestimate the aerobic exercise involved in running for your life from the local bully. You kids today are too damn fat and lazy to get up off your rear-ends, go out, and cause your own violence!
  • Down But High? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by rsmith-mac (639075) on Monday April 03, 2006 @01:09PM (#15051451)
    Granted the results indicate that there's a downward trend, and I fully believe that's a good thing, but am I the only one concerned here that the results are still so high? 42% is great, it's much better than 69%, but why can't it be 20%? Or 10%?

    I'm glad to see that progress is being made, but it seems like there's still something else that needs to be done to bring the results more in line with other purchases such as movie theaters(anyone have numbers for those, BTW?).

    • ...am I the only one concerned here that the results are still so high?

      Probably.

      I'm glad to see that progress is being made, but it seems like there's still something else that needs to be done to bring the results more in line with other purchases such as movie theaters(anyone have numbers for those, BTW?)

      Sooo... you're glad that the results are falling, but you're not happy that they're not in line with a number you don't currently know?

      Ya I'm a girl - do you have a problem with it, bub?

      No, but it annoys
  • by Kingrames (858416) on Monday April 03, 2006 @01:22PM (#15051576)
    Children are not stupid.

    The word will get around as to what retailers will sell them what games. 42% just means that there's a hole. And anything short of pure dictatorshp won't stop it.

    Any legislation that prohibits sales of games to minors fails completely at its goal. Which is, of course, to prevent them from playing those games.

    Still, I'd expect political doublespeak out the wazoo for a while, saying that they've been "wonderfully successful" at getting mature games out of the hands of children, and that there's "work still to be done."

    I hereby copyright those phrases. Any politician using them must immediately resign and pay me an amount of money equal to all of the money they will ever earn (and have earned) in their entire lifetime, plus one Mexican peso.
    • Any politician using them must immediately resign and pay me an amount of money equal to all of the money they will ever earn (and have earned) in their entire lifetime, plus one Mexican peso.

      The Mexican peso would be included in all of the money they will ever earn in their lifetime. This is an interesting plan as the politician will forever be stuck in a loop getting you one more Mexican peso. Everytime the bring you what they think is the last peso you tell them now you have earned one more peso and th
    • The word will get around as to what retailers will sell them what games. 42% just means that there's a hole. And anything short of pure dictatorshp won't stop it.

      Any legislation that prohibits sales of games to minors fails completely at its goal. Which is, of course, to prevent them from playing those games.


      Substitute cigarettes or beer for video games in your argument and see if it still holds water for saying that we shouldn't even bother with such laws. Poor enforcement is better than no enforcement so
      • Incorrect friend.

        Completely banning a product to a subset of the population is Communist.

        Now that's not to say that everyone who does it IS communist, but that's where the idea comes from.

        It has its roots way back in the olde days of Chinese philosophy. Legalism (on which nearly ALL of our current governments are based) emphasized the idea of using "Carrot-on-a-string" approaches to government. Either threaten the people with punishment for what they do, or reward them for what they do.

        In America, we chose
        • Okay, this thread is veering off-topic at this point.

          Completely banning a product to a subset of the population is Communist.

          You lost me. Banning alcohol to teenagers and children is somehow equivalent to state ownership of property? I think you have a very poor grasp of what Communism actually is.

          Either threaten the people with punishment for what they do, or reward them for what they do. In America, we chose the former because of a very simple reason.

          Yes, this of course is why the Constitution is missi
    • The word will get around as to what retailers will sell them what games. 42% just means that there's a hole. And anything short of pure dictatorsh[i]p won't stop it.

      You're right: kids aren't stupid -- and neither are parents, given half a chance.

      There sure is some middle ground between "sell 'em what they want" and "card every buyer." I'm a single parent of 12-year-old twins. It isn't necessary for me to ensure that every possible retailer in my area follows the letter of the M-ratings law. My kids know

      • I'm sorry, are you trying to tell me that people who choose to have children when they can't afford to ('necessitating' the second job, which is likely actually motivated by greed and desires to possess piles of shit) are somehow victims of society? Grow up. You chose to reproduce. It's not my responsiblity to make raising your spawn simpler. Those are your consequences, which you brought upon yourself. Keep that in mind when you think I owe you some assistance. Those kids didn't magically appear in
        • Grow up.

          Same advice back. Get some therapy, "brother."

          Fact is, working people are getting squeezed in a huge way by economic circumstances. No, I do not think law school grads are the only people worthy of making the choice to have kids. Forgive my commie ass for thinking so.

          Prate all you want about personal responsibility. What I'm saying is, any glorious "family values" rhetoric about M-rated games is complete hypocrisy when the economic policies of those same politicians crap on people with a famil

    • Any legislation that prohibits sales of games to minors fails completely at its goal. Which is, of course, to prevent them from playing those games.

      Is it? I thought the idea of the legislation was to prevent access to certain games without parental consent. Which is much more sensible: if your 14 year old can convince you that Killer 7 won't shock him, he's old enough to play it. As you said, children aren't stupid - most know their limits. Didn't you, when you were a kid?
  • by Opportunist (166417) on Monday April 03, 2006 @01:22PM (#15051579)
    Actually it's the only reason I watch evening news on some of the lower-quality channels.

    When they're doing their "reports" about parents who don't know jack about their kids playing violent games...

    Reporter: Do you know where your son is?
    Mother: Yeah, in his room.
    Reporter: And what he's doing there?
    Mother: According to the noise, I'd say he's playing Splinter Cell?
    Reporter: And do you know what's going on in this game?
    Mother: Yeah, sure.
    Reporter: And you don't consider this bad?
    Mother: I consider it being better than him doing it for real so you got some hot topic for your evening news.

    Unfortunately, we'll never see this interview aired.
  • I would like to see a equal study about kids watching/renting/buying R rated movies. M-rated games = R-rated movies, AO games = NC-17 movies. You can't take your kid into a NC-17 movie but you can to a R-rated one. I don't know how this applies to video games, I guess your child would not be able to purchase the game even if you are there.
    • Yeah, that's workable. If I'm there, I'm the one buying the game for my kid. It's my credit card and if I hand the game to the child afterwards, the retailer can't do much about it.
      • Yeah I was going to say that. I guess video game ratings are more equivalent to renting or buying DVDs as opposed to going to a movie. I just think that today we have gotten so use to movie ratings and that eventually it will happen to video games.
  • ...back then there was no company policy, we sold anything to to anyone who handed us money. Thats what we were in business to do sell things and make money. Telling someone they can't by "abc" product because of a letter on the box is counter to the mission. There was and still is I believe no law that says the retailer need respect the letter on the box. My assumption was always that if random person walks in and picks put product "abc" and hands it and $60 to me Mom and Dad know he's there and what h
  • by Daggon (948225) on Monday April 03, 2006 @05:03PM (#15053342)
    Personally I think the whole ratings concept is based in stupidity and missinformation. Children over the age of 6(possibly even younger) are able to discern reality from fantasy. Exposing them to violent material isn't going to magically change them into monsters. I watched R rated films when I was 10, played Doom when I was 13, played all kinds of violent games in my high school years, even saw a lot of porn on the internet. Now, I have a job, pay my taxes, and help the old lady down the hall carry in her groceries. Violent media did not make me into a monster. Why? Because my parents loved me and cared for me. Its that simple, neglect will screw a kid up a million times more than any piece of violent media ever will.

    The religious fundementalists in the world just want you to be afraid of things they don't approve of, thats why ratings exist. It has nothing to do with protecting anyone, just another way to control you.
  • I see this as good news. Ratings issues aside, this should be proof that yes, the industry CAN police itself, like the movie industry.

If a 6600 used paper tape instead of core memory, it would use up tape at about 30 miles/second. -- Grishman, Assembly Language Programming

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