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New Bill Calls for Mandatory Video Game ID Checks

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Posts

  • PuddingSenatorPuddingSenator Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    ArcSyn wrote: »
    Ok, so let's just dismiss altogether the law at hand:
    Should the industry, voluntarily, restrict the sale of movies rated R, music with explicit lyrics, games rated M?

    If so, what can the game industry do better so they do not get targeted by these types of bills in the future?

    Why is it that the game industry keeps coming up with fighting these things when I don't hear about the music industry or movie industry dealing with this?

    What can we do, as gamers, to encourage the industry to move forward in this?

    Yes, absolutely, the industry should voluntarily restrict the sale.

    What can they do not to be targeted? Stop making violent games.

    Really, that's the only way these people will be happy. Clearly it's not enforcement that is a problem, since as the study quoted a few times in this thread shows, the video game industry is better even that the movie industry in that area.

    The other thing we can do is just wait it out. Many media formats have gone through a phase such as this one, and eventually wide acceptance of the media wins out and the laws stop being proposed.

    The games industry comes up because it is newer than the others, and less widely accepted.

    What can we do? Oppose government regulation and demand voluntary restrictions from retailers. If there is a group that asks retailers to restrict sales without relation to the government, I will support it wholeheartedly.

    PuddingSenator on
  • kaliyamakaliyama Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    PantsB wrote: »
    kaliyama wrote: »
    The_Scarab wrote: »
    Caedere wrote: »
    Here's all I think I really need to say.
    St. Louis County passed an ordinance banned selling or renting violent video games to minors, or permitting them to play such games, without parental consent, and video game dealers sued to overturn the law. The Court of Appeals found the ordinance unconstitutional, holding that depictions of violence alone cannot fall within the legal definition of obscenity for either minors or adults, and that a government cannot silence protected speech for children by wrapping itself in the cloak of parental authority. The Court ordered the lower court to enter an injunction barring enforcement of the law, citing the Supreme Court's recognition in Erznoznik v. Jacksonville, 422 U.S. 205, 213-14, 45 L. Ed. 2d 125, 95 S. Ct. 2268 (1975) that "speech that is neither obscene as to youths nor subject to some other legitimate proscription cannot be suppressed solely to protect the young from ideas or images that a legislative body thinks unsuitable for them. In most circumstances, the values protected by the First Amendment are no less applicable when the government seeks to control the flow of information to minors."

    -nteractive Digital Software Association, et al. v. St. Louis County, Missouri, et al., 329 F.3d 954(8th Cir. 2003)

    Just lock the thread now. This is the answer to everything that we could possibly rehash over the next 10 pages.

    No, no, no - look at the case law I cited a few pages ago. The real issue is whether the material counts as obscene - here, the law was just "violent" video games versus "M" video games, and whether the legislature went through the required findings about harmfulness to minors. If you watn to read the case this broadly, then having MPAA movie ratings would be unconstitutional too, and they're clearly constitutional.

    Its pretty tough for the MPAA moving ratings to be unconstitutional since their existence and the enforcement of them is private (corporate) and voluntary. The precedent is as solid as a non-SCOTUS ruling can be.

    The case law you're referring to does not say what you seem to think it says. The summary from oyez demonstrates that the hurdles for such content based restriction would not allow a ban on M games to minors
    The Court held that the Act violated the First Amendment because its regulations amounted to a content-based blanket restriction of free speech. The Act failed to clearly define "indecent" communications, limit its restrictions to particular times or individuals (by showing that it would not impact on adults), provide supportive statements from an authority on the unique nature of internet communications, or conclusively demonstrate that the transmission of "offensive" material is devoid of any social value. The Court added that since the First Amendment distinguishes between "indecent" and "obscene" sexual expressions, protecting only the former, the Act could be saved from facial overbreadth challenges if it dropped the words "or indecent" from its text. The Court refused to address any Fifth Amendment issues.
    Full decision here

    If you're talking about the ALA case, that isn't relevant either. That referred specifically to requiring content in libraries to be censored in order to receive public funding. Requiring private entities to restrict the distribution of 1st Amendment protected information on a content-based metric is completely different. Caedere's citation is essentially perfect. It could be overridden by the current right-wing SCOTUS but the current precedent is that such a restriction would not be Constitutional.

    Sorry if my posts about ALA and the CDA were misleading - another poster had brought up slippery slope arguments, and I was offering those as examples of how courts can intelligently draw the line without falling victim to the overused slippery-slope trope. I don't think they're very on point for the issue of regulating game sales, and wasn't relying on them for authority. I actually think St. Louis, Ginsberg, and the discussion of Ginsberg in St. Louis explain how game sales can be regulated.

    St. Louis leaves the door open to a restriction on speech as long as the government makes a sufficient showing. Whether or not video games can meet the obscenity tests articulated in case law is unclear. The record that legislatures have relied on so far has been pretty crappy; whether this is because there's no evidence to find or because they're lazy and pandering (or both) is unknown.

    People on the thread have been saying that any content-based restriction of video game sales is unconstitutional because of the dicta in St. Louis, and that's simply untrue. St. Louis clearly lays out the burden the legislature has to meet in order to regulate game sales. They can do it. Will they? I don't know. But you need to read what happened in St. Louis - the gov't had like zero findings of how games they were regulating were sufficiently harmful to justify restrictions.

    kaliyama on
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  • ArcSynArcSyn Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    Bama wrote: »
    Javen wrote: »
    Khavall wrote: »
    I'm surprised that so many people are for putting video games in the same camp as Porn, Cigarettes, and Alcohol.


    Because they're totally the same.

    I think it's a basic fact that some video games are designed and made for use by adults.

    So why exactly should these games not be subject to the same restrictions?
    My pants are designed and made for use by adults. Why shouldn't they be subject to the same restrictions?

    Have you SEEN these kids with their baggy pants? I would gladly accept restriction on that. I do not need to see your boxers or crack, thankyouverymuch.

    ArcSyn on
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  • gameworkergameworker Registered User
    edited May 2008
    Lord Yod wrote: »
    Caedere wrote: »
    Also: to the men in the thread saying 'I'm over 18 so I don't care', would you care if they passed a law making it illegal for women to buy video games?

    What is this "women"? Is that a new kind of pokeyman?

    gameworker on
  • Kuribo's ShoeKuribo's Shoe Kuribo's Stocking North PoleRegistered User regular
    edited May 2008
    what's next

    fines or jailtime for people who buy m rated video games for minors

    I didn't realize we were dealing with a dangerous substance here

    Kuribo's Shoe on
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  • Kuribo's ShoeKuribo's Shoe Kuribo's Stocking North PoleRegistered User regular
    edited May 2008
    I guess I'll be more accepting of this when R rated movies are also required to have ID to purchase

    Kuribo's Shoe on
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  • Kuribo's ShoeKuribo's Shoe Kuribo's Stocking North PoleRegistered User regular
    edited May 2008
    and then what

    what if a ten year old kid wants to buy a season of the sopranos for his dad

    that's not rated R per se, but it is violent and contains foul language

    what about romance novels

    what about Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issues

    what of that

    Kuribo's Shoe on
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  • Lord YodLord Yod Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    Shoe knows what I'm talkin bout.

    Lord Yod on
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  • CaedereCaedere S'no regrets BIRDIESRegistered User regular
    edited May 2008
    gameworker wrote: »
    Caedere wrote: »
    Also: to the men in the thread saying 'I'm over 18 so I don't care', would you care if they passed a law making it illegal for women to buy video games?

    What is this "women"? Is that a new kind of pokeyman?

    Uh... I wasn't the one who said that. :p

    Although, if you want a woman pokeywomans, I can hook you up. :winky:

    Caedere on
    FWnykYl.jpg
  • ArcSynArcSyn Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    what's next

    fines or jailtime for people who buy m rated video games for minors

    I didn't realize we were dealing with a dangerous substance here
    I guess I'll be more accepting of this when R rated movies are also required to have ID to purchase
    and then what

    what if a ten year old kid wants to buy a season of the sopranos for his dad

    that's not rated R per se, but it is violent and contains foul language

    what about romance novels

    what about Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issues

    what of that

    You are not jailed. There is an edit button.. :)

    I think we moved beyond this, but mom could help him purchase Sopranos for dad, and I was actually very surprised to see the SI Swimsuit issue this year sitting out on the shelves. That was a bit too racy for the checkout line at the supermarket.

    ArcSyn on
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  • The WolfmanThe Wolfman Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    Caedere wrote: »
    Here's all I think I really need to say.
    St. Louis County passed an ordinance banned selling or renting violent video games to minors, or permitting them to play such games, without parental consent, and video game dealers sued to overturn the law. The Court of Appeals found the ordinance unconstitutional, holding that depictions of violence alone cannot fall within the legal definition of obscenity for either minors or adults, and that a government cannot silence protected speech for children by wrapping itself in the cloak of parental authority. The Court ordered the lower court to enter an injunction barring enforcement of the law, citing the Supreme Court's recognition in Erznoznik v. Jacksonville, 422 U.S. 205, 213-14, 45 L. Ed. 2d 125, 95 S. Ct. 2268 (1975) that "speech that is neither obscene as to youths nor subject to some other legitimate proscription cannot be suppressed solely to protect the young from ideas or images that a legislative body thinks unsuitable for them. In most circumstances, the values protected by the First Amendment are no less applicable when the government seeks to control the flow of information to minors."

    -nteractive Digital Software Association, et al. v. St. Louis County, Missouri, et al., 329 F.3d 954(8th Cir. 2003)

    Bolded and enlarged the key point in that blurb. Yes, that is the point this violates free speech, or 1st amendment rights, or whatever else is being cited. And on this point, you're absolutely right.

    Good thing this proposal IS NOT doing that. It just restricts the right to purchase the content, not consume it. There is shit all being violated by saying it would be illegal for a 12 year old child to purchase an M rated game. He can still play it, and nobody can stop him.

    There is no censorship happening, or governmental restrictions on speech, or any other V for Vendetta bullshit people are spouting off in defense of this. Children shouldn't be able to purchase M rated games by themselves. This helps prevent that. They can still PLAY M rated games, but they have to get their parents to buy it first.

    The Wolfman on
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  • PikaPuffPikaPuff Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    Javen wrote: »
    Khavall wrote: »
    I'm surprised that so many people are for putting video games in the same camp as Porn, Cigarettes, and Alcohol.


    Because they're totally the same.

    I think it's a basic fact that some video games are designed and made for use by adults.

    So why exactly should these games not be subject to the same restrictions?
    I think it's a basic fact that some music, paintings, movies and books are designed and made for use by adults.

    So why exactly should these music, paintings, movies and books not be subject to the same restrictions?


    Isn't this game fun?

    PikaPuff on
    jCyyTSo.png
  • AccualtAccualt Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    I don't have a problem with this law happening.

    I just hope if it does happen it opens up avenues for more adult games.
    Just like with movies I hate the idea that the creative makers behind products have to edit down their films/games to fit within a rating system. I doubt it would happen but I hope, because of this law, stores would be willing to carry AO titles. I mean technically the difference between M and AO is 1 birthday (17 and 18) but it has the same effect as R and NC-17...only worse since NC-17 films CAN get theatrical releases and put onto store shelves if they want. They just cut out a large portion of potential viewers.

    Accualt on
  • ArcSynArcSyn Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    Caedere wrote: »
    Here's all I think I really need to say.
    St. Louis County passed an ordinance banned selling or renting violent video games to minors, or permitting them to play such games, without parental consent, and video game dealers sued to overturn the law. The Court of Appeals found the ordinance unconstitutional, holding that depictions of violence alone cannot fall within the legal definition of obscenity for either minors or adults, and that a government cannot silence protected speech for children by wrapping itself in the cloak of parental authority. The Court ordered the lower court to enter an injunction barring enforcement of the law, citing the Supreme Court's recognition in Erznoznik v. Jacksonville, 422 U.S. 205, 213-14, 45 L. Ed. 2d 125, 95 S. Ct. 2268 (1975) that "speech that is neither obscene as to youths nor subject to some other legitimate proscription cannot be suppressed solely to protect the young from ideas or images that a legislative body thinks unsuitable for them. In most circumstances, the values protected by the First Amendment are no less applicable when the government seeks to control the flow of information to minors."

    -nteractive Digital Software Association, et al. v. St. Louis County, Missouri, et al., 329 F.3d 954(8th Cir. 2003)

    Bolded and enlarged the key point in that blurb. Yes, that is the point this violates free speech, or 1st amendment rights, or whatever else is being cited. And on this point, you're absolutely right.

    Good thing this proposal IS NOT doing that. It just restricts the right to purchase the content, not consume it. There is shit all being violated by saying it would be illegal for a 12 year old child to purchase an M rated game. He can still play it, and nobody can stop him.

    There is no censorship happening, or governmental restrictions on speech, or any other V for Vendetta bullshit people are spouting off in defense of this. Children shouldn't be able to purchase M rated games by themselves. This helps prevent that. They can still PLAY M rated games, but they have to get their parents to buy it first.

    Why does everyone ignore this part? Is it because it negates their entire point they are trying to make? Perhaps.

    ArcSyn on
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  • BamaBama Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    PikaPuff wrote: »
    Javen wrote: »
    Khavall wrote: »
    I'm surprised that so many people are for putting video games in the same camp as Porn, Cigarettes, and Alcohol.


    Because they're totally the same.

    I think it's a basic fact that some video games are designed and made for use by adults.

    So why exactly should these games not be subject to the same restrictions?
    I think it's a basic fact that some music, paintings, movies and books are designed and made for use by adults.

    So why exactly should these music, paintings, movies and books not be subject to the same restrictions?


    Isn't this game fun?
    I beat you to that point and I did it better so :P

    Bama on
  • Kuribo's ShoeKuribo's Shoe Kuribo's Stocking North PoleRegistered User regular
    edited May 2008
    The point is, putting a government enforced ID check on a product is basically calling that product "a bad thing"

    it sets a bad precedent. it's not the end of the world by itself, but it's opening a door that probably should not be opened.

    Kuribo's Shoe on
    xmassig2.gif
  • Xenogears of BoreXenogears of Bore Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    Accualt wrote: »
    I don't have a problem with this law happening.

    I just hope if it does happen it opens up avenues for more adult games.
    Just like with movies I hate the idea that the creative makers behind products have to edit down their films/games to fit within a rating system. I doubt it would happen but I hope, because of this law, stores would be willing to carry AO titles. I mean technically the difference between M and AO is 1 birthday (17 and 18) but it has the same effect as R and NC-17...only worse since NC-17 films CAN get theatrical releases and put onto store shelves if they want. They just cut out a large portion of potential viewers.

    Go see the documentary "This Film Has Not Yet Been Rated" and learn the truth.

    Oh sure, you CAN make an NC-17 or unrated movie, and just as many movie houses will carry them.

    I'd imagine getting the gub'ment involved would only worsen the problem of censorship by economic force.

    Stores will never carry AO games.

    Xenogears of Bore on
    3DS CODE: 3093-7068-3576
  • AkimboEGAkimboEG Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    Bolded and enlarged the key point in that blurb. Yes, that is the point this violates free speech, or 1st amendment rights, or whatever else is being cited. And on this point, you're absolutely right.

    Good thing this proposal IS NOT doing that. It just restricts the right to purchase the content, not consume it. There is shit all being violated by saying it would be illegal for a 12 year old child to purchase an M rated game. He can still play it, and nobody can stop him.

    There is no censorship happening, or governmental restrictions on speech, or any other V for Vendetta bullshit people are spouting off in defense of this. Children shouldn't be able to purchase M rated games by themselves. This helps prevent that. They can still PLAY M rated games, but they have to get their parents to buy it first.
    That.

    Seriously, there are countless cases where parents blame the gaming industry for their children's fuck ups, and I'm pretty fed up with it.
    I'm not saying this will solve the problem - I'm pretty sure most underage kids do get the games through their parents, but it's a step in the right direction.

    AkimboEG on
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  • PantsBPantsB Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    kaliyama wrote: »
    St. Louis leaves the door open to a restriction on speech as long as the government makes a sufficient showing. Whether or not video games can meet the obscenity tests articulated in case law is unclear. The record that legislatures have relied on so far has been pretty crappy; whether this is because there's no evidence to find or because they're lazy and pandering (or both) is unknown.
    Obscenity is a specific legal term. Violent video games are by definition not obscene unless at the very least they contain sexually explicit material (and thats only the very first step).
    People on the thread have been saying that any content-based restriction of video game sales is unconstitutional because of the dicta in St. Louis, and that's simply untrue. St. Louis clearly lays out the burden the legislature has to meet in order to regulate game sales. They can do it. Will they? I don't know. But you need to read what happened in St. Louis - the gov't had like zero findings of how games they were regulating were sufficiently harmful to justify restrictions.

    The findings were not the controlling factor in the case though. Link
    The record in this case includes scripts and story boards showing the storyline, character development, and dialogue of representative video games, as well as excerpts from four video games submitted by the County. If the first amendment is versatile enough to "shield [the] painting of Jackson Pollock, music of Arnold Schoenberg, or Jabberwocky verse of Lewis Carroll," Hurley, 515 U.S. at 569, 115 S.Ct. 2338, we see no reason why the pictures, graphic design, concept art, sounds, music, stories, and narrative present in video games are not entitled to a similar protection. The mere fact that they appear in a novel medium is of no legal consequence. Our review of the record convinces us that these "violent" video games contain stories, imagery, "age-old themes of literature," and messages, "even an `ideology,' just as books and movies do." See American Amusement Mach. Ass'n v. Kendrick, 244 F.3d 572, 577-78 (7th Cir. 2001), cert. denied, 534 U.S. 994, 122 S.Ct. 462, 151 L.Ed.2d 379 (2001). Indeed, we find it telling that the County seeks to restrict access to these video games precisely because their content purportedly affects the thought or behavior of those who play them. See Preamble to St. Louis County Ordinance No. 20,193 (Oct. 26, 2000).

    ...
    <SNIP further explanation of video games as speach>
    Whether we believe the advent of violent video games adds anything of value to society is irrelevant; guided by the first amendment, we are obliged to recognize that "they are as much entitled to the protection of free speech as the best of literature." See Winters, 333 U.S. at 510, 68 S.Ct. 665. We must therefore determine whether the County has advanced a constitutional justification for the ordinance's restrictions on speech.

    -
    Because the ordinance regulates video games based on their content (the ordinance applies only to "graphically violent" video games), we review it according to a strict scrutiny standard. See United States v. Dinwiddie, 76 F.3d 913, 921 (8th Cir.1996), cert. denied, 519 U.S. 1043, 117 S.Ct. 613, 136 L.Ed.2d 538 (1996); Video Software Dealers Ass'n v. Webster, 968 F.2d 684, 689 (8th Cir.1992). We reject the County's suggestion that we should find that the "graphically violent" video games in this case are obscene as to minors and therefore entitled to less protection. It is true that obscenity is one of the few categories of speech historically unprotected by the first amendment. See Chaplinsky v. New Hampshire, 315 U.S. 568, 571-72, 62 S.Ct. 766, 86 L.Ed. 1031 (1942); R.A.V. v. St. Paul, Minn., 505 U.S. 377, 382-83, 112 S.Ct. 2538, 120 L.Ed.2d 305 (1992). But we have previously observed that "[m]aterial that contains violence but not depictions or descriptions of sexual conduct cannot be obscene." Video Software, 968 F.2d at 688. Simply put, depictions of violence cannot fall within the legal definition of obscenity for either minors or adults. See id.

    Now they discuss whether if this was a rational basis case it would be Constitutional and determine it would not be.
    We believe that Ginsberg, the primary case cited by the County in support of its position, is inapposite because it invokes the much less exacting "rational basis" standard of review. See Ginsberg, 390 U.S. at 639, 641, 88 S.Ct. 1274. In Ginsberg, the Supreme Court recognized that the government could legitimately regulate sexually explicit material that is obscene as to minors but not obscene as to adults. See Ginsberg, 390 U.S. at 636-640, 88 S.Ct. 1274. But Ginsberg did not involve protected speech (like the speech at issue in this case), and thus the Supreme Court merely needed to determine whether "it was rational for the legislature to find that the minors' exposure to [sex] material might be harmful.... The legislature could properly conclude that parents and others, teachers for example, who have this primary responsibility for children's well-being are entitled to the support of laws designed to aid discharge of that responsibility." Id. at 639, 88 S.Ct. 1274 (emphasis added). Nowhere in Ginsberg (or any other case that we can find, for that matter) does the Supreme Court suggest that the government's role in helping parents to be the guardians of their children's well-being is an unbridled license to governments to regulate what minors read and view.

    The Ginsburg case referred to a bookseller selling a video of 16 year old boys masturbating to minors, material that was classified as obscene because of the inclusion of minors.

    The best known obscenity test is the Miller test. It must be all three of these to be obscene legally.
    wiki wrote:
    * Whether the average person, applying contemporary community standards, would find that the work, taken as a whole, appeals to the prurient interest,
    * Whether the work depicts/describes, in a patently offensive way, sexual conduct or excretory functions [2] specifically defined by applicable state law,
    * Whether the work, taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value. (This is also known as the (S)LAPS test- [Serious] Literary, Artistic, Political, Scientific).
    I know of no video games available on mainstream consoles (not including the PC) that pass (or fail depending on how you look at it) those three standards.

    PantsB on
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  • CaedereCaedere S'no regrets BIRDIESRegistered User regular
    edited May 2008
    Caedere wrote: »
    Here's all I think I really need to say.
    St. Louis County passed an ordinance banned selling or renting violent video games to minors, or permitting them to play such games[/B][/SIZE], without parental consent, and video game dealers sued to overturn the law. The Court of Appeals found the ordinance unconstitutional, holding that depictions of violence alone cannot fall within the legal definition of obscenity for either minors or adults, and that a government cannot silence protected speech for children by wrapping itself in the cloak of parental authority. The Court ordered the lower court to enter an injunction barring enforcement of the law, citing the Supreme Court's recognition in Erznoznik v. Jacksonville, 422 U.S. 205, 213-14, 45 L. Ed. 2d 125, 95 S. Ct. 2268 (1975) that "speech that is neither obscene as to youths nor subject to some other legitimate proscription cannot be suppressed solely to protect the young from ideas or images that a legislative body thinks unsuitable for them. In most circumstances, the values protected by the First Amendment are no less applicable when the government seeks to control the flow of information to minors."

    -nteractive Digital Software Association, et al. v. St. Louis County, Missouri, et al., 329 F.3d 954(8th Cir. 2003)

    Bolded and enlarged the key point in that blurb. Yes, that is the point this violates free speech, or 1st amendment rights, or whatever else is being cited. And on this point, you're absolutely right.

    Good thing this proposal IS NOT doing that. It just restricts the right to purchase the content, not consume it. There is shit all being violated by saying it would be illegal for a 12 year old child to purchase an M rated game. He can still play it, and nobody can stop him.

    There is no censorship happening, or governmental restrictions on speech, or any other V for Vendetta bullshit people are spouting off in defense of this. Children shouldn't be able to purchase M rated games by themselves. This helps prevent that. They can still PLAY M rated games, but they have to get their parents to buy it first.

    Hey, look, I can do it too! The quote talks about both banning the sale/renting of games to minors, in addition to regulating whether or not they could play them.

    Please don't misquote or misrepresent my post to fit your viewpoint - what I posted is very clear and very, very to the point.

    Caedere on
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  • MistaCreepyMistaCreepy Registered User
    edited May 2008
    Caedere wrote: »
    Ashendark wrote: »
    I'm all for it. There are simular laws restricting sale of rated R movies to minors right? The same should apply for games especially since the medium is so popular among them.

    No, there are not. It's voluntary.

    The government has no place regulating content that is protected under the First Amendment. At all.

    Thats all it pretty much boils down to.

    People, we don't need the federal government stepping in to take care of everything. The current way is fine and if government just HAS to be involved let the state and/or local city councils take care of it.

    MistaCreepy on
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  • DjiemDjiem Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    Children shouldn't be able to purchase M rated games by themselves.

    Period.
    (as long as they can have a parent buy it for them and then they can play it if the parent approves)

    Really, I don't see the difference between M-rated games (not all games, M-rated games) and porn. Both are for an audience that needs to conform to a certain age standard due to the content of the product.

    Now, I can see the anti's point: We don't actually legislate movies and books, so why games?
    I don't have a straight answer. It's a debate that can't easily be solved, and everyone will have different opinions.

    But drop the censorship and 1st ammendment bullshit, there's no censorship going on here. Is it censorship that a teen can't go out and buy/rent porn?

    Djiem on
  • Xenogears of BoreXenogears of Bore Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    Djiem wrote: »
    Children shouldn't be able to purchase M rated games by themselves.

    Period.
    (as long as they can have a parent buy it for them and then they can play it if the parent approves)

    Really, I don't see the difference between M-rated games (not all games, M-rated games) and porn. Both are for an audience that needs to conform to a certain age standard due to the content of the product.

    Now, I can see the anti's point: We don't actually legislate movies and books, so why games?
    I don't have a straight answer. It's a debate that can't easily be solved, and everyone will have different opinions.

    But drop the censorship and 1st ammendment bullshit, there's no censorship going on here. Is it censorship that a teen can't go out and buy/rent porn?

    Yes, it is. If you got the right Judges in the Supreme Court you could get that overturned.

    Xenogears of Bore on
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  • DjiemDjiem Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    Djiem wrote: »
    Children shouldn't be able to purchase M rated games by themselves.

    Period.
    (as long as they can have a parent buy it for them and then they can play it if the parent approves)

    Really, I don't see the difference between M-rated games (not all games, M-rated games) and porn. Both are for an audience that needs to conform to a certain age standard due to the content of the product.

    Now, I can see the anti's point: We don't actually legislate movies and books, so why games?
    I don't have a straight answer. It's a debate that can't easily be solved, and everyone will have different opinions.

    But drop the censorship and 1st ammendment bullshit, there's no censorship going on here. Is it censorship that a teen can't go out and buy/rent porn?

    Yes, it is. If you got the right Judges in the Supreme Court you could get that overturned.

    Rrrreally... so my plan to sell porno to kids in elementary schools will soon be complete.

    Djiem on
  • Xenogears of BoreXenogears of Bore Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    Djiem wrote: »
    Djiem wrote: »
    Children shouldn't be able to purchase M rated games by themselves.

    Period.
    (as long as they can have a parent buy it for them and then they can play it if the parent approves)

    Really, I don't see the difference between M-rated games (not all games, M-rated games) and porn. Both are for an audience that needs to conform to a certain age standard due to the content of the product.

    Now, I can see the anti's point: We don't actually legislate movies and books, so why games?
    I don't have a straight answer. It's a debate that can't easily be solved, and everyone will have different opinions.

    But drop the censorship and 1st ammendment bullshit, there's no censorship going on here. Is it censorship that a teen can't go out and buy/rent porn?

    Yes, it is. If you got the right Judges in the Supreme Court you could get that overturned.

    Rrrreally... so my plan to sell porno to kids in elementary schools will soon be complete.

    Crazy, I know.

    Xenogears of Bore on
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  • KhavallKhavall British ColumbiaRegistered User regular
    edited May 2008
    Djiem wrote: »
    Children shouldn't be able to purchase M rated games by themselves.

    Period.
    (as long as they can have a parent buy it for them and then they can play it if the parent approves)

    Really, I don't see the difference between M-rated games (not all games, M-rated games) and porn. Both are for an audience that needs to conform to a certain age standard due to the content of the product.

    Now, I can see the anti's point: We don't actually legislate movies and books, so why games?
    I don't have a straight answer. It's a debate that can't easily be solved, and everyone will have different opinions.

    But drop the censorship and 1st ammendment bullshit, there's no censorship going on here. Is it censorship that a teen can't go out and buy/rent porn?

    Yes, it is. If you got the right Judges in the Supreme Court you could get that overturned.

    Not necessarily. The idea of restricting porn is that it has no artistic merit and is only salacious in intent.

    So by restricting games, then we have a law saying games have no artistic merit, and are only for violence/pornographic purposes.

    Video games, like other forms of multimedia art, should not be censored. Period.

    Khavall on
  • urahonkyurahonky Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    In case nobody knows:
    censor

    noun
    1. someone who censures or condemns
    2. a person who is authorized to read publications or correspondence or to watch theatrical performances and suppress in whole or in part anything considered obscene or politically unacceptable

    verb
    1. forbid the public distribution of ( a movie or a newspaper) [syn: ban]
    2. subject to political, religious, or moral censorship; "This magazine is censored by the government"

    urahonky on
  • KhavallKhavall British ColumbiaRegistered User regular
    edited May 2008
    urahonky wrote: »
    In case nobody knows:
    censor

    noun
    1. someone who censures or condemns
    2. a person who is authorized to read publications or correspondence or to watch theatrical performances and suppress in whole or in part anything considered obscene or politically unacceptable

    verb
    1. forbid the public distribution of ( a movie or a newspaper) [syn: ban]
    2. subject to political, religious, or moral censorship; "This magazine is censored by the government"

    It is also defined in certain definitions as Suppressing material.

    Restriction of age is suppression.

    Wow, for instance the second definition of the noun form.

    Khavall on
  • BedlamBedlam Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    You can't restrict speech! Ever! In any way!
    How about laws that prohibit speech directly like saying you can't swear or slander someone. Or that you aren't allowed to use "fighting words" or defamination laws?

    How about those?

    Bedlam on
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  • BedlamBedlam Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    Also many stores already do this and its going to pass because we need to "protect our kids"

    Bedlam on
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  • urahonkyurahonky Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    Oh shi... I'm getting pulled into this argument... ABORT!

    urahonky on
  • ironzergironzerg Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    urahonky wrote: »
    In case nobody knows:
    censor

    noun
    1. someone who censures or condemns
    2. a person who is authorized to read publications or correspondence or to watch theatrical performances and suppress in whole or in part anything considered obscene or politically unacceptable

    verb
    1. forbid the public distribution of ( a movie or a newspaper) [syn: ban]
    2. subject to political, religious, or moral censorship; "This magazine is censored by the government"

    Now we need to look up the difference between public distribution and commercial sale.

    ironzerg on
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  • kaliyamakaliyama Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    PantsB wrote: »
    kaliyama wrote: »
    St. Louis leaves the door open to a restriction on speech as long as the government makes a sufficient showing. Whether or not video games can meet the obscenity tests articulated in case law is unclear. The record that legislatures have relied on so far has been pretty crappy; whether this is because there's no evidence to find or because they're lazy and pandering (or both) is unknown.
    Obscenity is a specific legal term. Violent video games are by definition not obscene unless at the very least they contain sexually explicit material (and thats only the very first step).
    People on the thread have been saying that any content-based restriction of video game sales is unconstitutional because of the dicta in St. Louis, and that's simply untrue. St. Louis clearly lays out the burden the legislature has to meet in order to regulate game sales. They can do it. Will they? I don't know. But you need to read what happened in St. Louis - the gov't had like zero findings of how games they were regulating were sufficiently harmful to justify restrictions.

    The findings were not the controlling factor in the case though. Link
    The record in this case includes scripts and story boards showing the storyline, character development, and dialogue of representative video games, as well as excerpts from four video games submitted by the County. If the first amendment is versatile enough to "shield [the] painting of Jackson Pollock, music of Arnold Schoenberg, or Jabberwocky verse of Lewis Carroll," Hurley, 515 U.S. at 569, 115 S.Ct. 2338, we see no reason why the pictures, graphic design, concept art, sounds, music, stories, and narrative present in video games are not entitled to a similar protection. The mere fact that they appear in a novel medium is of no legal consequence. Our review of the record convinces us that these "violent" video games contain stories, imagery, "age-old themes of literature," and messages, "even an `ideology,' just as books and movies do." See American Amusement Mach. Ass'n v. Kendrick, 244 F.3d 572, 577-78 (7th Cir. 2001), cert. denied, 534 U.S. 994, 122 S.Ct. 462, 151 L.Ed.2d 379 (2001). Indeed, we find it telling that the County seeks to restrict access to these video games precisely because their content purportedly affects the thought or behavior of those who play them. See Preamble to St. Louis County Ordinance No. 20,193 (Oct. 26, 2000).

    ...
    <SNIP further explanation of video games as speach>
    Whether we believe the advent of violent video games adds anything of value to society is irrelevant; guided by the first amendment, we are obliged to recognize that "they are as much entitled to the protection of free speech as the best of literature." See Winters, 333 U.S. at 510, 68 S.Ct. 665. We must therefore determine whether the County has advanced a constitutional justification for the ordinance's restrictions on speech.

    -
    Because the ordinance regulates video games based on their content (the ordinance applies only to "graphically violent" video games), we review it according to a strict scrutiny standard. See United States v. Dinwiddie, 76 F.3d 913, 921 (8th Cir.1996), cert. denied, 519 U.S. 1043, 117 S.Ct. 613, 136 L.Ed.2d 538 (1996); Video Software Dealers Ass'n v. Webster, 968 F.2d 684, 689 (8th Cir.1992). We reject the County's suggestion that we should find that the "graphically violent" video games in this case are obscene as to minors and therefore entitled to less protection. It is true that obscenity is one of the few categories of speech historically unprotected by the first amendment. See Chaplinsky v. New Hampshire, 315 U.S. 568, 571-72, 62 S.Ct. 766, 86 L.Ed. 1031 (1942); R.A.V. v. St. Paul, Minn., 505 U.S. 377, 382-83, 112 S.Ct. 2538, 120 L.Ed.2d 305 (1992). But we have previously observed that "[m]aterial that contains violence but not depictions or descriptions of sexual conduct cannot be obscene." Video Software, 968 F.2d at 688. Simply put, depictions of violence cannot fall within the legal definition of obscenity for either minors or adults. See id.

    Now they discuss whether if this was a rational basis case it would be Constitutional and determine it would not be.
    We believe that Ginsberg, the primary case cited by the County in support of its position, is inapposite because it invokes the much less exacting "rational basis" standard of review. See Ginsberg, 390 U.S. at 639, 641, 88 S.Ct. 1274. In Ginsberg, the Supreme Court recognized that the government could legitimately regulate sexually explicit material that is obscene as to minors but not obscene as to adults. See Ginsberg, 390 U.S. at 636-640, 88 S.Ct. 1274. But Ginsberg did not involve protected speech (like the speech at issue in this case), and thus the Supreme Court merely needed to determine whether "it was rational for the legislature to find that the minors' exposure to [sex] material might be harmful.... The legislature could properly conclude that parents and others, teachers for example, who have this primary responsibility for children's well-being are entitled to the support of laws designed to aid discharge of that responsibility." Id. at 639, 88 S.Ct. 1274 (emphasis added). Nowhere in Ginsberg (or any other case that we can find, for that matter) does the Supreme Court suggest that the government's role in helping parents to be the guardians of their children's well-being is an unbridled license to governments to regulate what minors read and view.

    The Ginsburg case referred to a bookseller selling a video of 16 year old boys masturbating to minors, material that was classified as obscene because of the inclusion of minors.

    The best known obscenity test is the Miller test. It must be all three of these to be obscene legally.
    wiki wrote:
    * Whether the average person, applying contemporary community standards, would find that the work, taken as a whole, appeals to the prurient interest,
    * Whether the work depicts/describes, in a patently offensive way, sexual conduct or excretory functions [2] specifically defined by applicable state law,
    * Whether the work, taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value. (This is also known as the (S)LAPS test- [Serious] Literary, Artistic, Political, Scientific).
    I know of no video games available on mainstream consoles (not including the PC) that pass (or fail depending on how you look at it) those three standards.

    I have a feeling you're going to agree with most of what i'm saying - it's hard to know what you're arguing/how you're interpreting this case because you're mostly quoting it, so I apologize if i'm redundant or mischaracterize your position.

    Like I said, I don't know if the government can make the required findings to show a compelling interest to restrict video game sales or that any particular video game is going to meet the miller test. But if they do, it's clear you can regulate video game sales. I noted in an earlier post the same thing you do - that restricting violent video games by definition isn't restricting obscene speech because obscenity requires more than violence. That post is here.

    All the first two block quotes explain is that video games are a protected form of expression. Bizarrely, the district court found video games weren't a protected medium of expression. I don't think anyone is arguing that video games aren't entitled to first amendment protections in the abstract - was there something else those quotes are offering that I missed? If video games weren't protected, the court wouldn't have to even bother with the meat of the decision - when a government can regulate video game sales.

    There are two avenues for permissibly regulating speech
    1) Find the speech is obscene and less protected, and that you are not restricting non-obscene speech.
    2) Regulate non-obscene speech under strict scrutiny - showing a compelling interest in regulating it and that you are using the least restrictive means possible.


    The point in St. Louis' discussion of Ginsberg was that rational basis review didn't apply because it wasn't obscene speech. When you can show either 1 or 2, it is perfectly fine to empower parents to control their children's access to speech.

    Even if most games aren't obscene, if they offer some combination of explicit sex or violence and it has a negative impact on children, then there is probably a compelling interest to justify regulation of the icky, but non-obscene speech. So in St. Louis, The government's findings about the impact of video games were most certainly the controlling factor in deciding whether or not there was a compelling interest in regulating this speech. Once the government can produce credible psychological studies showing that these games have real impacts on the behavior of children, it is very likely that this sort of restriction on sale will be upheld. This sort of law can easily be constitutional, as long as the legislating body is less bumbling and inept than the one in St. Louis.
    Before the County may constitutionally restrict the speech at issue here, the County must come forward with empirical support for its belief that "violent" video games cause psychological harm to minors. In this case, as we have already explained, the County has failed to present the "substantial supporting evidence" of harm that is required before an ordinance that threatens protected speech can be upheld. See Eclipse Enters. v. Gulotta, 134 F.3d 63, 67 (2d Cir.1997); see Turner, 512 U.S. at 666, 114 S.Ct. 2445; United States v. Playboy Entm't Group, Inc., 529 U.S. 803, 822, 120 S.Ct. 1878, 146 L.Ed.2d 865 (2000). We note, moreover, contrary to the district court's suggestion, that the County may not simply surmise that it is serving a compelling state interest because "ociety in general believes that continued exposure to violence can be harmful to children," Interactive Digital, 200 F.Supp.2d at 1137. See American Amusement, 244 F.3d at 578. Where first amendment rights are at stake, "the Government must present more than anecdote and supposition." Playboy Entm't, 529 U.S. at 822, 120 S.Ct. 1878.

    kaliyama on
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  • HoundxHoundx Registered User
    edited May 2008
    I think it's telling that movies were excluded from this. By that I mean that the bill's sponsors KNOW that the MPAA and related organizations would shoot it down right away. If this bill passes and the gaming industry shoots it down they can then stand up and say, "They want to sell these games to kids!!!1!11!!!"

    Houndx on
  • SithDrummerSithDrummer Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    Regulat0r wrote: »
    It's about time.
    ^

    SithDrummer on
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  • SithDrummerSithDrummer Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    edit: well hay i got beaten sorely by Wolfman

    Caedere wrote: »
    Hey, look, I can do it too! The quote talks about both banning the sale/renting of games to minors, in addition to regulating whether or not they could play them.

    Please don't misquote or misrepresent my post to fit your viewpoint - what I posted is very clear and very, very to the point.
    He didn't misquote nor did he misrepresent: the ordinance can be overturned specifically based on what he bolded, and it's very likely that was the primary reason, not sales restrictions.

    SithDrummer on
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  • GyralGyral Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    Antishow wrote: »
    They should make a law stating that only women can buy video games.

    Gamestop would be the emptiest place on Earth.

    Fixed, for sadness.

    :P

    And before you run me out of town saying that there are girl gamers, I would counter with the reply "Not Enough".

    Gyral on
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  • The WolfmanThe Wolfman Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    Caedere wrote: »
    Caedere wrote: »
    Here's all I think I really need to say.
    St. Louis County passed an ordinance banned selling or renting violent video games to minors, or permitting them to play such games[/B][/SIZE], without parental consent, and video game dealers sued to overturn the law. The Court of Appeals found the ordinance unconstitutional, holding that depictions of violence alone cannot fall within the legal definition of obscenity for either minors or adults, and that a government cannot silence protected speech for children by wrapping itself in the cloak of parental authority. The Court ordered the lower court to enter an injunction barring enforcement of the law, citing the Supreme Court's recognition in Erznoznik v. Jacksonville, 422 U.S. 205, 213-14, 45 L. Ed. 2d 125, 95 S. Ct. 2268 (1975) that "speech that is neither obscene as to youths nor subject to some other legitimate proscription cannot be suppressed solely to protect the young from ideas or images that a legislative body thinks unsuitable for them. In most circumstances, the values protected by the First Amendment are no less applicable when the government seeks to control the flow of information to minors."

    -nteractive Digital Software Association, et al. v. St. Louis County, Missouri, et al., 329 F.3d 954(8th Cir. 2003)

    Bolded and enlarged the key point in that blurb. Yes, that is the point this violates free speech, or 1st amendment rights, or whatever else is being cited. And on this point, you're absolutely right.

    Good thing this proposal IS NOT doing that. It just restricts the right to purchase the content, not consume it. There is shit all being violated by saying it would be illegal for a 12 year old child to purchase an M rated game. He can still play it, and nobody can stop him.

    There is no censorship happening, or governmental restrictions on speech, or any other V for Vendetta bullshit people are spouting off in defense of this. Children shouldn't be able to purchase M rated games by themselves. This helps prevent that. They can still PLAY M rated games, but they have to get their parents to buy it first.

    Hey, look, I can do it too! The quote talks about both banning the sale/renting of games to minors, in addition to regulating whether or not they could play them.

    Please don't misquote or misrepresent my post to fit your viewpoint - what I posted is very clear and very, very to the point.

    It was very clear to the point. That it is unconstitutional to make it illegal for youths to be subjected to violence or forms of speech. That's the crux of the argument. Or in laymans terms, it cannot be against the law for little Timmy to view a scene of someone getting gutted.

    That has nothing to do with SELLING him the scene. That should be restricted. Which is exactly what this current proposition wants to do.

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  • gameworkergameworker Registered User
    edited May 2008
    Caedere wrote: »
    Although, if you want a woman pokeywomans, I can hook you up. :winky:

    Would that make you a Pokepimp? Oh snap!

    gameworker on
  • PuddingSenatorPuddingSenator Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    It was very clear to the point. That it is unconstitutional to make it illegal for youths to be subjected to violence or forms of speech. That's the crux of the argument. Or in laymans terms, it cannot be against the law for little Timmy to view a scene of someone getting gutted.

    That has nothing to do with SELLING him the scene. That should be restricted. Which is exactly what this current proposition wants to do.

    "Speech that is neither obscene as to youths nor subject to some other legitimate proscription cannot be suppressed solely to protect the young from ideas or images that a legislative body thinks unsuitable for them. In most circumstances, the values protected by the First Amendment are no less applicable when the government seeks to control the flow of information to minors."

    I don't know what it sounds like to you, but nothing in there sounds like they exclusively are talking about the part of the law regarding playing the game. Preventing sale of a game sure sounds like "controlling the flow of information" and "suppression" to me. At the very least you must admit that it is a debatable point. Unless there's something I'm missing.

    PuddingSenator on
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