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View Full Version : The ESRB Takes a Different Approach


Dillgaar
06-21-2006, 12:13 PM
1877With all of the legislation being brought up recently in regards to content in video games, the ESRB has finally announced its plans for how to handle the situation.

They have devised a new "Commitment To Parents" retailer code to help cut the problem off at the source, where their children buy the video games.

Instead of attacking the games and game developers themselves, the ESRB has decided to approach the problem where it could actually do some good. They plan to promote the ratings system and educate its retailers on how to handle these situations. It's nice to see a calmer response to this outcry and one that actually seems like time was spent thinking about how to really affect the problem.

You can read more about the code here (http://www.retailcouncil.org/ctp/about_commitment.asp).

Pragmatica
06-21-2006, 12:34 PM
If a 13 year old boy walked into Wal-Mart and wanted to buy an R rated movie, there is no doubt that he would be able to buy it without parent supervision. How many check out cashiers check the rating on the back of the movie case? When a person buys beer, there is a warning that pops up for the cashier that says that the person buying it must be 21. Even then this relies on the cashier to actually check the ID of the person buying the beer. The ESRB move for education is great, but it is impossible to police the ratings with the person selling the product to the minor. Or is it impossible? Where are the parents of these minors? Oh, that's right, they are too busy suing Wal-Mart or the game developers for making and selling game.
Being a parent of two kids, if one of them came home with an R movie or M video game, I would take it away from them and blame the kids, not the person that sold it or the person that made it. However, that requires parenting which seams like we are lacking today.

wasted_druid
06-21-2006, 12:45 PM
Actually, R rated movies are tracked in Walmart's computers. If it gets scanned at a POS terminal, the cashier is prompted to check for ID. It even does this at the self-checkout terminals, and a cashier has to come over, much to the chagrin of everone standing in line behind you. Strangely enough, a lot of places do the same thing for spray paint.

Severoth
06-21-2006, 02:00 PM
Actually, R rated movies are tracked in Walmart's computers. If it gets scanned at a POS terminal, the cashier is prompted to check for ID. It even does this at the self-checkout terminals, and a cashier has to come over, much to the chagrin of everone standing in line behind you. Strangely enough, a lot of places do the same thing for spray paint.

Aye, I can confirm this. Wal-mart's computers also require an ID check for "M - Mature" rated games.

Azzerhoden
06-21-2006, 03:19 PM
Being a parent of two kids, if one of them came home with an R movie or M video game, I would take it away from them and blame the kids, not the person that sold it or the person that made it. However, that requires parenting which seams like we are lacking today.

Except of course, that your kids wouldn't bring the game home in a way that you could see they had it. They would sneak it in, or just as bad, take it over to a friends house whose parents were "cool", or who weren't currently at home, or had a VCR / Game Console in their room where they could watch/play it in private.

Though you don't provide any ages, I suspect that your kids are not teenagers yet. Wait until they are, then you will find out just how much pressure is on them to "break parental rules" from a constant barrage of peer and media pressure.

Pragmatica
06-21-2006, 09:12 PM
Thank you for the correction about Wal-Mart. I am surprised and happy to here that.

Also, you are correct. My kids are not teenagers yet and I know from personal experience that it is way to easy for kids to hide stuff from their parents. I can't wait (/irony).

My point is (however miss-guided) that it should be the parentís job to watch the kids, not the government. I am just tired of hearing parents say that "this game is too violent for my 12 year old" when the game is rated M and the parent bought it for them. Then they sue the game developers for making such a violent game (all because the parent did not check the box). This hurts the game industry because the developer spends resources to deal with the litigation, not the next game, and consequently, the game suffers.
I don't buy an R rated movie, show it to my kids and sue the director for emotional distress because my kids heard the F bomb then push the government to make laws against any R rated movies being made.

Crimson
06-23-2006, 03:07 AM
Pragmatica,

you sadly are a from a rare and nearly extinct species called "caring parent". It seems like most parents completely forgot that they are the foremost responsible persons for their children's behaviour.
I would like to point out a nice scene from the book "Starship Troopers" (which is totally different from the movie) where somebody thinks about law and about the fact that parents receive public flogging for their children's misdeeds :D
Maybe we should give that law a try...

BTW - I find it very curious that especially with movies displays of violence seem to be ok for young children while a female chest (something most people see as one of the first things in life ;) ...) is completely of limits.
Is war so much better than love? :confused:

C.