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Post by Any @ 04:40pm 14/12/09 | 27 Comments
The oft-delayed discussion paper regarding an R18+ classification for games has been released here: http://www.ag.gov.au/gamesclassification:
The Commonwealth Government has released a discussion paper which briefly summarises the key arguments for and against an R 18+ classification for computer games. Censorship Ministers have considered the issue of an adult classification for computer games on several occasions. However, they have not undertaken public consultation on this issue.

Submissions are being sought on whether the Australian National Classification Scheme should include an R 18+ classification category for computer games. Submissions can be made by downloading and completing the submission template. Submissions may also be mailed or faxed. The discussion paper and submission template contain the contact details for making a submission.

Submissions are invited by close of business 28 February 2010. Submissions received after the due date may not be considered.
Edit by trog: the release includes a bunch of the common explanations about why we should and shouldn't have an R18+ rating, a comparison against other countries, and - most importantly - calls for comments. You can download a simple submission template with a bunch of questions that you can answer and then send to the AG's office along with any other comments you have. promoted/edited forum item



classificationcensorship





Latest Comments
casa
Posted 04:46pm 14/12/09
I thought all of this would be a waste of time as Atkinson still needs to let it pass in the senate, which he clearly has stated a billion times in the past, that he will not.
trog
Posted 04:48pm 14/12/09
Any; hope you don't mind but I edited the crap out of your post so I could just promote it.
Any
Posted 04:50pm 14/12/09
Kotaku is also reporting that the ACT senator has sent a letter to the gamers 4 croydon group saying he supports an R18 classification.

Looks like Atkinsons "all the other Attourneys General support me" line might be not quite true. Who'da thunk it...

ps, no worries Trog, thanks for that. I left it a bit sparse.

last edited by Any at 16:50:45 14/Dec/09
ravn0s
Posted 04:51pm 14/12/09
why do they give rapelay as an example of a game that would still be RC when its developer never intended the game to be released outside of japan?
Any
Posted 04:57pm 14/12/09
cause Atkinson keeps referring to it as an evil that would come of allowing an R18 classification.
darkjedi
Posted 05:01pm 14/12/09
Because Atkinson has a massive hard-on for Rapelay.
Jetpack
Posted 05:02pm 14/12/09
somehow i see the "crazy parent" side of the argument being for more in the majority then the "everyone else has one" gamer minority
Topper
Posted 05:26pm 14/12/09
Just so I get a better understanding of this discussion paper..how is this information compiled and acted upon ? Are we 'voting' on an R rating or is it just a waste of time? Unless every single australian above 18y.o. fills this out, I cant see how the govt can act on it...so my question is, what are they going to do with this information after 28th Feb ?
infi
Posted 05:27pm 14/12/09
Unless every single australian about 18y.o. fills this out, I cant see how the govt can act on it.


Er wouldn't it be "every single australian over the age of 18 who wants to play more violent games"?

I am sure there are a few of them out there, but enough to change the law?
Deano
Posted 05:29pm 14/12/09
Hey All,

I've created a template for use in Open Office. It'll save you time and includes moveable choice selections and easily exported to PDF. Enjoy!

Download: http://www.2shared.com/file/9973557/dc32fbcf/reply-template.html
Topper
Posted 05:55pm 14/12/09
Unless every single australian about 18y.o. fills this out, I cant see how the govt can act on it.
Er wouldn't it be "every single australian over the age of 18 who wants to play more violent games"?

I am sure there are a few of them out there, but enough to change the law?


Yeh, it was a typo...I edited the post just after you replied to it. I meant over 18
pARODY
Posted 06:06pm 14/12/09
All the 1-5 scale questions are fine till you get to this gem.

"An R 18+ for computer games would exacerbate problems associated with access to high level material in Indigenous communities and by other non-English speaking people"

seriously WTF?!
Why is this being included into the issue? This is starting to look like the questions put forward for the "Should Australia become a republic" where all the options would contribute to it looking bad. This may still be typical action of doing nothing since it requires unanimous agreement ( democracy fail ) and Atkinson has stated numerous times he's against it.

I'm putting in my submission purely for the chance Atkinson can put aside his prejudice and preconceptions and let Australians choose for themselves.
Chris Prior
Posted 06:10pm 14/12/09
Re: the arguments against…

*There is little reliable scientific evidence of increased impact due to interactivity, and significant evidence that it in fact diminishes the impact because pressing buttons reinforces the fact that it is not real. The classification system also includes the provision that interactivity is to be taken into account, thus an R18+ film and R18+ game would be the same ‘impact’.

*It would not be more difficult than for films, and in many instances with the easy to use parental controls on modern consoles and PCs, potentially easier. Limited use of parental controls is a reason to increase education for parents, not restrict adult liberty.

*Less adult-oriented content would be placed in the MA15+ category, making less adult content available to minors. The size of the Australian games market is not significant enough to urge developers to create higher-impact games with the introduction of an R18+ for games, something that every other western democracy has.

*Again, education is a preferred response to poorly-understood classifications, rather than censorship.

*There is little demonstrated need to watch films, read books or listen to music. They, like games, are choices. The impact that the lack of a R18+ for games has on the economy is significant. Anecdotally, dozens of game stores across Adelaide sold tens of thousands of dollars, each, of Modern Warfare 2. If, as Mr Atkinson wants, this game is retroactively Refused Classification, the ongoing sales of that product – a single game – will cease. Gamers in WA who purchased the game legally will become criminals for possession of RC material. Left 4 Dead 2 sold pitiful numbers in Australia due to the lack of an R18 and its subsequent censoring. That is money that instead of going to Australian retailers has gone to international stores. Aliens vs Predator, another highly anticipated game, would likely have seen millions of dollars pass through the local economy. Now, it will go oversees.

Chris Prior
Gamers4Croydon Councillor
I game, I vote.
d0mino
Posted 07:02pm 14/12/09
thankyou deano for your link, i filled that s*** out and sent it off!

everyone get on it.
Tollaz0r!
Posted 07:45pm 14/12/09
ARG! I was hoping that the discussion paper was being deliberatly held back in the hope that Dis.Hon. Atkinson gets dropped for his dodgy land deal or quits or something. If he is in his current position no amount of discussion will change his mind.

And since our political system is screwed up so that 1 person our of millions can decide to not change something it wont.

We just have to keep ordering our games overseas, they are cheaper that way, in most cases, anyway.
Tim Tibbetts
Posted 08:22pm 14/12/09
...will become criminals for possession of RC material


Chris, is it actually illegal to own RC material? I was under the impression it was only illegal to sell it.

Strike that, I just googled it :)

last edited by Tim Tibbetts at 20:22:17 14/Dec/09
Seven
Posted 09:19pm 14/12/09
I've popped in a contribution because I want this fixed.

I stressed gamers are not the minority.
Noonga
Posted 02:01am 15/12/09
i dont have word or something to view pdf. cant i just txt document it?
they're really making this difficult
Beanith
Posted 10:29am 15/12/09
Well I sent off my submission. Time to paint my face blue and run around waving a golf club shouting Freedom!
trog
Posted 10:33am 15/12/09
i dont have word or something to view pdf. cant i just txt document it?they're really making this difficult
Sounds more like you're making it unnecessarily difficult for yourself to me!

Here is the free MS Word Viewer which will let you open and print .DOC files easily. You could also install OpenOffice.

If you hate Acrobat, you can install FoxIt Reader which is a lightweight PDF viewer.

If any of those options above are really that stressful for you, I'll try and make a web-based form that you can use and hit print direct from your browser, time permitting.
Noonga
Posted 01:54pm 15/12/09
thanks trog
gsc4
Posted 09:39pm 15/12/09
Please watch Sunrise at around 8:15am tomorrow (Wednesday) for a segment on this subject. A good friend of mine who is very supportive of an R18 classification will be interviewed.
Pinky
Posted 09:44pm 15/12/09
Please watch Sunrise at around 8:15am tomorrow (Wednesday) for a segment on this subject. A good friend of mine who is very supportive of an R18 classification will be interviewed.

I hope he's intelligent. This issue requires some finesse to carry it through I reckon.

I'm going to email this form to everyone and get them to submit. It takes 5 min and it's mega-important to get this one through.
parky
Posted 07:18pm 20/4/10
These games with this so called "high impact and domestic violence" is already avalable under an MA15 rating, many of them were given an R rating in most countries but are let into australia under an MA15 rating due to lack of an R18, think about it only 4 games were deemed inapropriate for under 18s compared to the numerous amount given adult ratings in other countries, for example Just cause 2 was given an MA15 rating in aus by the OFLC, yet PEGI, (i think its a europen classification) gave it an 18 rating.

So unless your ganna re-clasify ALL the MA rated games an R rating will be sufficent in protecting kids from innapropriate matireal. Like booze and smokes you will haveto show ID to legally purchase it, an R rating will protect kids, or at least be safer for them then the system now.
neffo
Posted 07:20pm 09/8/10
These games with this so called "high impact and domestic violence" is already avalable under an MA15 rating, many of them were given an R rating in most countries but are let into australia under an MA15 rating due to lack of an R18, think about it only 4 games were deemed inapropriate for under 18s compared to the numerous amount given adult ratings in other countries, for example Just cause 2 was given an MA15 rating in aus by the OFLC, yet PEGI, (i think its a europen classification) gave it an 18 rating.


I see. Well I'm going to start an online petition to have MA15+ games banned also. Our children must be protected.
Pinky
Posted 05:47pm 12/8/10
natslovR
Posted 06:08pm 12/8/10
That article makes him seem more positive than the snippet I caught on the news. You'd think Kodaku would've watch his responsethemselves before writing it up
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