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New Bill Proposes More Gaming Restrictions

There has been much discussion and debate over the effects games have on gamers, with the latest news being that of a Jack Thompson backed bill that would ban certain types of games from being sold to minors. It isn't really a suprise that Thompson is, once again, behind such an attack on the gaming industry. What is suprising is that the bill has been approved to go to the Senate for final debate.

You may think a law limiting sales to minors is necessary, which is definitely arguable, but the text in this newly proposed bill is quite ludicrous when it says that it would be illegal to sell, rent, or lease a game to a minor if it met the following three conditions:

  1. The average person, applying contemporary community standards, would find that the video or computer game, taken as a whole, appeals to the minor's morbid interest in violence.

  2. The game depicts violence in a manner patently offensive to prevailing standards in the adult community with respect to what is suitable for minors.

  3. The game, taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value for minors.

The problem is that this bill has opened the doorway for even more laws restricing game sales and use. Yesterday one such bill was announced that includes the following restrictions on game use:

  1. Game useage must be kept at a maximum of 30 minutes a day for minors and 60 minutes a day for adults. The maximum use per week must not exceed 120 minutes for minors and 200 minutes for adults.
  2. Minors may only play governmentally approved educational software.
  3. Minors may not play any game that has the capability of being connected to the internet. Additionaly, minors are not to play games that are able to be modified.
  4. Both minors and adults that play games for more than 90 minutes in a single week must have a therapy session that will determine if there have been any negative effects. If such negative effects are found, the person will not be allowed access to games for at least one month.

The above restrictions are clearly a major step towards controlling the impact gaming has on society. Though there is much opposition to this new bill, the legislative body seems to be leaning towards supporting it.

Drafters of the bill claim that such control will help prevent violent crimes and the increasing "moral degradation" that they believe society is experiencing.

[tags]game bans, game restriction, Jack Thompson[/tags]


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