April 29th, 2006

Video Game Industry Reacts to Spitzer's Call for Legislation

Yesterday, New York Attorney General - and gubernatorial candidate - Eliot Spitzer (left) made headlines with a call for video game legislation as well as a universal rating system which would cover games, movies, television and music.

In the wake of Spitzer's criticism, the video game industry has been swift to react. The first game-oriented site to report the Spitzer story yesterday, GamePolitics brings readers industry reaction today.

ESRB president Patricia Vance, whose organization came under fire from Spitzer, said, "ESRB ratings are clear as day on the front and back of virtually every video game sold nationwide, and they provide consumers with useful and easy to understand information with which to decide about whether they consider a game appropriate for their family. Consumer research shows that 74% of parents with children who play video games are regularly using the ESRB ratings... We would be happy to provide information about our ratings to Mr. Spitzer, and hope we can find ways to cooperatively ensure that children play age-appropriate games, as we have done with other Attorneys General around the country."

Over at the ESA, Doug Lowenstein had this to say:

"The (ESA) sincerely appreciates and respects the concerns of Attorney General Spitzer. A uniform rating system is a good idea in principle. But there are practical problems involved with applying the same standards to fundamentally different media that make realization of this ideal immensely challenging... By imposing a 'one size fits all' formula on these widely divergent entertainment mediums, a universal ratings system could actually create confusion, not simplicity. We would also point out that any universal rating regime would require the support of many other industries... making this an issue that transcends whatever views ESA may have."
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