R18+ adjournment speech – your comments

Tuesday, November 23rd, 2010 @ 9:15PM

Tonight I presented an adjournment speech to the Australian Senate to table a petition and add my support for the introduction of an R18+ games classification in Australia. The speech is linked below, along with a few other useful references.

I’d like to hear what you think.

Kate

Adjournment speech – http://www.katelundy.com.au/2010/11/23/adjournment-speech-supporting-an-r18-games-classification-in-australia/

Some additional useful references:

Everyone plays
http://everyoneplays.org.au/

Discussion paper: Should the Australian National Classification Scheme include an R 18+ classification category for computer games?
http://www.ag.gov.au/gamesclassification

Interactive Australia 2009 (Bond University research paper)
http://www.igea.net/wp-content/uploads/2009/08/IA9-Interactive-Australia-2009-Full-Report.pdf

The Interactive Games and Entertainment Association
http://www.igea.net/?s=r18

Game Developers’ Association of Australia
http://gdaa.com.au/?s=r18

A media release on this topic was released by ACT Minister, Simon Corbell at
www.chiefminister.act.gov.au/media.php?v=9518

Letter from ACT Minister Simon Corbell on a R18+ games classification as well as correspondence from other AGs around the country:
http://www.gamers4croydon.org/correspondence.php

“Developer: No R18+ games classification costing the industry heavily”
http://www.arnnet.com.au/article/329883/developer_no_r18_games_classification_costing_industry_heavily/

“Enough stalling on games classification”
http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/politics/enough-stalling-on-games-classification-20101105-17h4p.html

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    119 Comments to "R18+ adjournment speech - your comments" add comment
    Bill Dennis
    November 23, 2010 at 9:34 pm

    Hi Kate,

    Thanks for speaking up about this important issue! Here’s hoping that the attorney generals get their act together!

    Bill Dennis
    November 23, 2010 at 9:39 pm

    I totally meant attorneys general, honest.

    Matthew Ross
    November 23, 2010 at 9:36 pm

    embrace the 21st centure dont fear it pretty sure I was 1 of the 89000

    Thomas Roberts
    November 23, 2010 at 9:42 pm

    It’s good to see Senator Lundy supporting this cause. Video Games and interactive media in general are playing an increasing role in our lives. I feel we need a sensible classification scheme to allow adults to engage with mature concepts and provide information to parents (like myself).

    It’s refreshing to see the Senators speech explain the issue clearly. This classification scheme something that has overwhelming support and it’s been frustrating to see little progress over the last few years. We want a govt who is prepared for the challenges of changing technology. This is an encouraging sign.

    Andrew Callaghan
    November 23, 2010 at 9:48 pm

    Hi Senator,

    Thank you for raising this issue. How this issue has gone on for so long is ridiculous. Let’s keep our fingers crossed that the attorneys-general can agree this time.

    Aidan Dullard
    November 23, 2010 at 10:25 pm

    Hi Senator Lundy,

    Great to see that you’re supporting the introduction of an R18+ classification for video games. Although the decision rests in the hands of the assorted Attorneys-General, it’s nice to see that R18+ has support from within the Government.

    In the lead-up to the next SCAG meeting on December 10, it’s refreshing to see this issue get some Government attention. Thanks again for your efforts, and we can only trust that the Attorneys-General will come to the same conclusions.

    W Young
    November 24, 2010 at 10:25 am

    Thank you for raising this issue.

    In my opinion, it’s important for the general public to understand that gaming is much more diverse than it has ever been.

    We classify all other forms of media, so why shouldn’t computer/console games be included in this too?

    Dane Butler
    November 24, 2010 at 11:06 am

    The Labor Party could benifit from having more of Senator Lundy’s kind. By that I mean the rational common sense kind that politics ever so often lacks

    Michael Bottroff
    November 24, 2010 at 12:28 pm

    Well done Kate.
    Very well covered and spoken.
    I’ve signed many petitions and sent many letters and emails over the years. Its unfortunate I missed the opportunity to sign the one you speak of.

    Lets hope you are successful in moving Australian forward on this particular matter.

    – Michael

    J Gault
    November 24, 2010 at 12:32 pm

    I would like to thank you for your efforts supporting the introduction of a R18+ classification system to the gaming industry in Australia. As a parent i believe it is our responsibility and right to ensure we are involved with our youth and what they are watching and interacting with and not have this decision made for us at a higher level.

    thankyou for your support

    Roland Kulen
    November 24, 2010 at 1:59 pm

    I want to acknowledge Senator Lundy and her ICT policy advisor, Pia Waugh, for their passion and professionalism in light of what the “GAME / PALGN / EveryonePlays” R18+ campaign stands for – Protect Children from Mature PC and Video Games. While we hit a milestone, Rob and I couldn’t have done it without their openness, commitment and forward thinking. The journey continues… Roland Kulen

    Rohan R.
    November 24, 2010 at 2:50 pm

    I thought the speech delivered was excellent and informative.

    I think Video and Computer Games slip under the radar fairly easily and are often dismissed as a ‘worthy’ entertainment medium, when compared to film and literature, but as you said in your speech Ms. Lundy, this is a billion dollar industry that is continuing to grow.

    Scott Fowler
    November 24, 2010 at 5:48 pm

    Thankyou very much Kate. Excellent speech, you’ve covered every topic in a well spoken manner. I have sent quite a few emails, and participated in the petition for an R18+ rating classification for the Video and Computer games industry. As a former internet cafe worker, I’ve seen first hand the confusion by many parents on what is appropriate material, and the gap in the current ratings system.

    Kevin Burns
    November 24, 2010 at 8:34 pm

    Thank you Kate. Excellent speech.

    Thomas
    November 25, 2010 at 8:30 am

    Well done Kate im a 43 year old gammer who has been playing games from my early teens its about time som1 spoke up for the gammers of Australia.I also had signed the petition for the 18+ classification.

    well done.

    Simon Tyzack
    November 25, 2010 at 8:59 am

    Thank you, Thank you, Thank you.

    As a gamer and father of three i cant agree more with your point on a “gap in the Ratings”. I am disapointed by some of the games that get banned and also some the scrap through on a MA 15+. So thank you Kate for representing us and our rights as adults and the protection of our children. I wish you all the best.

    Rennie F
    November 25, 2010 at 10:18 am

    “The Bond University research paper Interactive Australia 2009 paper, also found that 91% of Australians, gamers and non-gamers alike, support the introduction of an R18+ games classification.”

    Any politition/lawmaker in a democratic society who ignores this needs to seriously reconsider their values.

    Great work Kate!

    Rennie F
    November 25, 2010 at 10:22 am

    OK, so I can’t spell politician :)

    Nigel Cox
    November 25, 2010 at 10:25 am

    Well done Kate I’m a 25 year old gamer who has been playing games from my early years and it’s about time someone spoke up for the gamers of Australia. I also had signed the petition for the 18+ classification and will be once again disappointed if they don’t realise the need for this.

    well done.

    Stefaan
    November 25, 2010 at 3:19 pm

    I hope people will take some notice of this Kate, you seem to be the only labor MP with some understanding of freedom of choice given your track record with the filter and now your very well researched speech calling for the introduction of something that is long overdue.

    I’m not holding my breath as I know that the decision making process allows for one individual personal moral and religious convictions to basically decide for the whole population of Australia.

    I’m not sure what political power exist to change this broken system but I don’t think that decisions on content an censorship should be made by the Attorney Generals for reasons above, I’m afraid only a change at that level will allow for this introduction.

    But at theoldergamers.com, a community with over 43,000 adult gamers we certainly are glad to see that at least 1 politician understands that not only children play games.

    Thank you

    Aaron Finn
    November 25, 2010 at 11:09 pm

    Thank you.

    Mark
    November 26, 2010 at 8:49 am

    I am a New Zealander and am really glad that this speech was made.

    You see New Zealand doesn’t have the same system as Australia as we have an R18+ classification.

    Whenever Australia bans a game or a game is modified to be MA15+ it usually effects NZ too. A lot of game retailers actually import games from the UK instead of using the trade routes in Australia as they don’t want to sell a modified copys of games.

    So Thanks for finally giving this issue its much needed attention

    Scott Dowson
    November 26, 2010 at 11:57 am

    Thank you.

    From a very appreciative gamer.

    Anthony
    November 26, 2010 at 2:46 pm

    Hello Senator Lundy,

    Thanks for speaking out on this issue. At times gamers feel at odds with the political system as they feel perceived as an insignificant group or cast as socially irresponsible. This usually results in the gamer turning their back on the system as they feel that it has nothing to offer them.

    You actions, along with those of Scott Ludlam, have given me a little faith that there are politicians who will listen and do see things from our perspective.

    Thanks,

    Anthony (Melbourne)

    Raymond
    November 26, 2010 at 3:16 pm

    Yeah, way to go! More censorship, that’s totally what Australia needs!

    Let’s keep hiding the unpleasant stuff from our kids so that when it happens in real life, they’ll be able to learn from the experience without any prior knowledge!!

    Keep it up guys n gals, if we’re lucky, we’ll hit the “Biggest Nanny State in History” mark first!!

    For those who didn’t catch the sarcasm, yeah, it’s there. Instead of hiding our kids from the ugly truth, we need to teach them about it and how to deal with it.

    And more censorship like this is just walking 180 degrees in the wrong direction.

    So yeah, keep it up!

    jeremy W
    November 28, 2010 at 2:23 am

    This isn’t a censorship issue. it’s about the need for a classification system that reflects the demographics that utilise the information it provides to inform their choices as adults, consumers, and parents.

    having games designed for adults altered to fit a lower age bracket is utterly backwards and out of step with other forms of media and the rest of the worlds classification system for games.

    the current system also defeats it’s own purpose as games that should really be classified for adults slip into the quite broad MA15+ category.

    Thank you very much Senator for being a voice of reason in an often highly emotionalised debate. Your well informed speech highlighted well the the case for classification reform. Thank you once again.

    jeremy W, an appreciative constituent.

    W Young
    November 30, 2010 at 10:48 am

    Currently if something can’t be classified, then it can’t be sold here at all.

    It’s even worse than having an 18+ classification. At least having the extra classification levels allows things to be sold here at all, otherwise for all practical purposes it doesn’t exist.

    Brian Ward
    November 26, 2010 at 3:17 pm

    Thanks for fighting the good fight for us. It seems ridiculous how long this has to be debated. Is an R18+ rating going to make it harder for younger people to get a hold of unsuitable? Yes. So why is there a debate? It completely astounds me that it should be so difficult to convince people that the concerns we all have are for protecting the young ones, not giving us access to more unsuitable material. There is an R18+ rating for movies, why not for video games? Look at the rest of the world and see how much of a laughing stock we are on this issue.

    Vikram Harinath
    November 26, 2010 at 8:22 pm

    Nice work Kate. I can’t believe Australia is taking so long to make a decision on this particular topic. It really should not be an issue at all!

    Hopefully this will finally see Australia progress to a point where other nations have been for years.

    New Zealand is one of those countries that I consider to be less “nanny state” and provide its citizens with the right amount of democratic rights.

    Australia has a lot of work to do if it can even be considered in the same light as New Zealand.

    Introducing an R18+ classification for computer games will take Australia along the right steps to walk into that light.

    What’s the other step? Ditching the mandatory internet filter.

    Daniel
    November 26, 2010 at 10:06 pm

    Hi Kate,

    Thankyou for standing up in support of this issue. To me its nonsensical that in Australia, if a game is not considered suitable for a child 15 years or younger it is banned.

    Surely Australia, being a developed Western country, should not contain such out dated laws and bring itself in line with other Western democracies by introducing an R18+ classification for computer games.

    You highlighted it in your speach but the average gamer is 30 years old. Myself I’m 31 and I’ma public servent with Centrelink. I’m happily married and happen to enjoy the odd first person shooter in my spare time. Mr Atkinson will of course disagre with me but for the record….no – I’m not a potential serial killer with hidden motives of brutal slaughter of my fellow man. I can assure you I’m as normal as 99.9% of all other gamers out there – a number which equates to around 88% of Australia’s population.

    It is thinking like Mr. Atkinson’s which will keep Australia in the dark ages when it comes to moving our society forward with sensible classification which benefits both industry and consumer alike.

    Kate, what I am very concerned about is the current status of the debate. The discussion paper now more than ever – seemed to be a smoke screen to appease people such as myself – the timing of which oddly enough, was remarkedly close to the federal election. Coincidence?? I think not.

    It seems to me it was an easy way for Labor to perhaps claw back a few votes, given that so many are for the clasification. It is also obviously that a big part of the gaming community are also very outspoken on the Filter – another way of shifting the voter focus away from this since the government had taken a massive hit in the media and a public backlash bigger than Ben Hur.

    Be honest Kate, so far its just been your party throwing carrots. Nothing of substance. Nobody is going to be willing to make this decision. As you well know – it is completely political and any backlash by the very vocal christian minority on this topic will be enough for government to walk away and put it in the too hard basket yet again.

    The comments by Minister O’Conner recently sum it up. He and the attorney general’s want to involve the so called Silent Majority. Even this term is completely inaccurate. We have already said 88% of Australia’s population have a devicein the home to play computer games on. Who exactly is the Minister referring to? If the excerise in gauging views from the “wider community” is going to involve talking to the ACL, residents of aged care homes and Family First then we all know how that will turn out.

    The Minister should just admit that the results of the submissions were not what the government wanted so what he plans to do on all levels of government is keep asking the same questions to a select minority group of people (who incidently probably don’t even know how to turn on a computer let along play a computer game) to get the answer he is after.

    The government seriously needs to grow up Kate and for once do what is right, and for once not conduct extensive research on if the right thing to do may upset a few zealots who happen to carry a large following of easily influenced sheep.

    M Capelli
    November 26, 2010 at 11:03 pm

    Hi Kate,

    It’s great to see you have tabled the petition in parliament, I was unaware there was such a petition and would definitely sign it if I had the opportunity.

    I have join a group that supports the 18+ classification for video games, on the “STEAM” community.

    Do we now need to lobby our respective Attorney Generals in each state to push this through?

    John F
    November 27, 2010 at 5:24 am

    Thank you so much Kate.

    Your efforts are greatly appreciated on this issue regarding the R rating for Video Games. It baffles me how the Attorney Generals of this Country cannot come to a sensible decision to pass this bill. With all the information that has been brought to their attention, it makes complete sense to introduce this classification and allow Australia to move forward with the rest of the world. However, the 68,000 submissions are not being taken seriously.

    A lack of an R rating for video games is a clear indication that they believe games are only for children and therefore they do not understand that with the advancements of gaming technology, a majority of games will contain adult content just like R rated movies and should strictly be available to adult gamers. Gone are the days of PAC MAN and SPACE INVADERS.

    This classification system is simply to assist parents to be aware of what they’re children should and should not be viewing. It’s all about common sense. What more can be said other than “It’s time for a change”.

    Angela
    November 27, 2010 at 10:54 am

    Hi,
    just wanted to say THANK YOU for talking about this. As a gamer who perhaps does not fit the stereotype (I am 43 and female) I commend you for standing up for the rights of gamers, most of whom statistically speaking are adults and not children as the marketing machine would have us all believe.

    Hearing parents bang on about how this is a wrong move is utterly ridiculous, as stated in your speech this will more clearly define the ages meant at point of purchase. These “parents” need to spend more time parenting and less time banging on about something they clearly have no grasp of.

    We NEED this rating, or adults – like myself – will only spend our disposable income outside of the country by purchasing edited titles from game stores in the UK.

    Angela
    November 27, 2010 at 10:56 am

    ** followup… NON edited games from stores in the UK.

    Craig Keogh
    November 27, 2010 at 5:38 pm

    Thank you and well done.

    Shane
    November 27, 2010 at 7:34 pm

    Thank you for standing up for this issue Kate, especially where no-one else would. As an adult it is sad to see kids have access to games that they shouldn’t, purely because we lack the proper classifications to rate videogames.

    My example is a relative who is under 18 and has access to a game called Assassins Creed, a game based almost entirely around killing. Were it a movie it would definitely be rated R18+. So that is why I am glad you have supported this cause, and I hope others will help you too.

    Yet again thank you,
    Shane

    Linda Thomas
    November 27, 2010 at 8:43 pm

    Thanks go to the Senator for helping with this important issue. I don’t understand why everything else can have classification and yet not gaming. With more and more games being released for the adult gamers, it is more important than ever than ever that the R18+ rating gets the nod.It’s amazing that there is still debate – but there is, so all who bring this issue to light and work to get legislation passed deserve our praise.

    Thank you Senator Lundy

    Alex
    November 28, 2010 at 2:46 pm

    Thank you for your efforts to make this issue known. Time for the Gov Gen’s to treat adults as adults.

    This issue shows how out far of touch the bulk of politics is with the actual populace.

    What worries me is Govenors General thinking that they get to ignore the public and decide they will rule as they see fit, or that they see that the way they choose to live their own personal life is somehow related to the way the general populace live.

    We need more in government who follow the will of the people, not decide for them.

    Alex
    November 28, 2010 at 2:49 pm

    ATT Gen’s, not Gov Gen’s…

    Adam Bolte
    November 28, 2010 at 2:49 pm

    Nice speech Kate. Well done.

    Kevin Rudd
    November 28, 2010 at 3:28 pm

    Although petitions are about as fair and balanced as Fox News, I appreciate everyones attempts at keeping games like COD and GTA away from 13 yearolds with non-boganesque parents.

    It may not be an important piece of legislation, but it shouldn’t even be something that needs change in the first place. If I can buy Absinthe why can’t I buy a zombie game where a corpse doesn’t disappear before it hits the ground.

    the earl of squiralton
    November 30, 2010 at 12:41 pm

    Hey,

    I’m from the UK where we have an 18 classification, i have been incredibly amused at first to how all the games, Left 4 dead as an example, have to be re-made just for australia because you do not hold an 18 rating. it seems like such a pointless excersize for the hard workers of the games to have to remake and fix up all there games just so it can be enjoyed in Australia. it has happened to hundreds of companies with their new titles and it wont be long before they decide it just isn’t worth it! this has already happened a couple of times.

    its about time you bring out the classification, i have now moved to australia and will be getting my games illegally through an english port download until you do. I am 21, have been gaming for years and have never wanted to shoot my friend in the face because of a game. or wanted to steal a car after a few hours on GTA.

    its time to grow up australia, the world is changing and you need to catch up!

    Monique Colbeck
    December 2, 2010 at 5:13 pm

    Thank you Kate for your efforts and support regarding this issue.

    It is ridiculous that we do not yet have an 18+ age rating for video games. Not only will it make it less costly to sell on the Australian market, but people like myself will be able to buy our games here at home rather then have to go on eBay and find a complete version of the title from the UK.

    I was in a EB the other day as a mother was what I presume… doing Christmas shopping. The way she spoke on the phone made me think she was buying for a young person. I saw in her hand a title that I was familiar with, a title by famed company ‘Rockstar’ .. this company makes fun but rather adult games. I struck up a conversation with her about the shopping rush as we waited in line (very busy time of day!) and found her child was actually 12.

    I asked her if she knew anything about the title and when he admitted she didn’t I gave her a general run through and gently told her I thought it would be too mature for the age group. I went through the back cover and the manual with her and she decided that it was not suitable for her son. I felt like I did something good that day but it could have easily been avoided think with a 18+ sticker. She said to me ‘well he’s almost 13 so I thought 15 is close enough’.

    Now there is a responsibility for parents to actually look into what they are giving their children yes. But why not make it easier for them? Give us a 18+ rating!

    Kind regards,
    Monique

    Lenare
    December 3, 2010 at 10:46 am

    Whats the problem with an R rating? Movies and TV shows have it- Do it!
    Just make the issue about it being enforced!
    Ask for ID on every MA and R rated game.

    Brimstone
    December 3, 2010 at 10:51 am

    Thank you for this. Gaming magazines in America always talk about Australian censorship and it really hurts your international reputation.

    max
    December 3, 2010 at 11:30 am

    I feel that even if no r rating is introduced, the games should have the same content as movie standards. Ih ‘ve seen more violent things in loony tunes than in an average R rated game.

    emmitt
    December 3, 2010 at 11:39 am

    i think that R18+ games should be allowed. if you don’t want your kids playing it, well that is really up to the parents wishes and how they want to bring up their kids.

    that is why i think yoiu shouldn’t alter R18+ games to be age appropriate.

    Chris Rattray
    December 3, 2010 at 11:47 am

    Thank you Senator Lundy for your clear and concise, fact-based message on this issue.

    Those that oppose the R18+ classification for video games have pushed an argument that is based on nothing but fear and superstition, which is hardly surprising given their religious backgrounds.

    It also explains why they have such a hard time separating fact from fantasy.

    Again, I applaud you Senator Lundy for your clarity on this issue, based on fact-based research.

    Let’s get the bill through and move on. There are more important issues in our society to focus on.

    emmitt
    December 3, 2010 at 11:57 am

    although i would like to point outjust because australia doesn’t pass this bill, doesn’t mean that they are living in the dark ages and don’t have a good democracy. right now there is a shift in the state government, and the parties have a lot to worry about.

    also, lets remember that some countries ban videogames entirely because of what they say. so we kinda are lucky.

    so don’t use this as an excuse to hate on the government, or talk about how they are hyporcites in the dark age. use this because you want the game and want to play games that aren’t allowed and if you diasgree with their policies.

    Clytie Siddall
    December 3, 2010 at 4:55 pm

    Kate, thankyou for getting behind the move for a R18+ rating for video games. Hopefully, the much-delayed SCAG meeting will vote to support it.

    I think this has been a key issue for young voters, and so far has been disillusioning. My first-time-voting younger daughter (aged 19) voted on this issue (and the filter) in both the SA State election and the Federal election, and made an individual submission to the Senate Enquiry, on the advertized basis that her voice would actually be heard.

    As far as she can see, her voice has been ignored, along with the other >90% of voices submitting to the Senate Enquiry. I encouraged her to persevere, so she has been tracking the issue, but it is important to her, and to the many young voters who have decided to participate in this campaign, that democracy is seen to work in this case (at least).

    If we want to engage young people in politics, we need to listen to them.

    Jade Ling
    December 3, 2010 at 11:39 pm

    I wanted to thank the Senator for bringing up so many viable points- as 20 something gamer, I feel that a lot of people ignore the fact that parents need information on the games that they’re buying for their children. I agree with most of the other posters, you did a fabulous covering all of the most important points.

    The federal and state leaders have no reasons not to pass this, and more fool them if they don’t. I strongly believe that as part of being a responsible nation, we are remiss in leaving out an R18+ rating.

    Space Cadet
    December 5, 2010 at 1:02 pm

    In my opinions, as a youth of Australia, the R18+ isn’t really going to do much except annoy a lot of young gamers and make a whole new ‘black market’ type operation for young people to get the hands on the game, or just send their parents to get them.

    I’m not saying the is a good thing i am merely looking at the reality of the situation.

    If a parent doesn’t want their child to play those types of video game then that is their choice, but why prevent those who want to being able to access them?

    W Young
    December 6, 2010 at 3:23 pm

    Actually, all the games that would be classified as R18+ would be the very games that you wouldn’t have access to anyway.

    The only way an underage person would get the R18+ games would be: (1) illegally as is currently done, or (2) retailers not doing proper checks, or (3) parents not doing the proper parental thing.

    Arguments against an R18+ classification ignore the fact that under-18s wouldn’t normally have access to the content anyway. Adults would have to make a conscious choice to buy these games for under-18s, and then they would also have no recourse regarding provision.

    Adding the classification helps inform adults about just *what* their children are playing, since they can see who these games are targeted at, instead of having absolutely NO information at all. Parents will be *more* empowered.

    It’s the same rules as it is for movies and other such media: if you’re not in the age-group, then you shouldn’t be consuming it.

    Josh Langley
    December 5, 2010 at 8:06 pm

    Kate thanks so much for you support….

    its beyond me why its taken this long….

    Simon
    December 6, 2010 at 5:53 am

    Thank you, from one of the 89,000.

    Anon
    December 6, 2010 at 3:08 pm

    The answer space cadet is obvious. Because you are under 18! And you are not looking at the reality of the situation as you are biased because you would be legally restricted.

    The reality is that game companies would not need to censor, we would get full content without going offshore for it.

    And if you need to wait for your next birthday to purchase it, or have to seek your parents permission then so be it.

    Nathan
    December 6, 2010 at 7:31 pm

    this is an important issue and I am so glad to see someone like yourself stand up and say so

    thank you

    Evan Johnson
    December 6, 2010 at 11:04 pm

    Thank you Senator Lundy for all of your efforts.
    I truly hope we can get the R18+ classification through very soon.
    I’m a father, a gamer and one of the 89000 and truly appreciate the work you are doing.

    JJ
    December 8, 2010 at 1:12 am

    Hi Guys.

    I am glad that this topic is being discussed as I think that its about time Australia kept up with the rest of the developed world. I believe that having a R18 classification for games would be great as we would actually be able to have access to games that have been refused classification or have been made so tame that they lose their essence. As for the argument for aggression, it is pointless. It is parents’ responsibility not the State’s to do their job: parenting. Poor social cohesion is the the main reason behind aggression in the society, not some computer games. A person, who wants to commit atrocities would, regardless of having access to computer games. Making a medium scapegoat for lack of parenting skills is not the way to go.

    Thanks

    Marty
    December 8, 2010 at 3:17 pm

    Thank you for championing the cause of *less* restrictive government censorship! Let freedom prevail!

    Adam
    December 11, 2010 at 11:16 pm

    Hi Senator Kate Lundy

    Firstly i would like to say thank you for support in parliment for in a R18 Classification on Video/Conputer Gaming. My argument is why does the Australian gaming community have to suffer with edited Gaming when other countries such as the UK enjoy inedited R18 rated gaming. I find this unfair to the Australian Gaming Community and retail shops such as EBgames and Game Australia. As you stated we have a R18 Classification on DVD Movies so in fairness the Australian Government Need to pass a R18 Classification for Video/Computer Gaming. Once again thank you for supporting this move for Australia in getting a R18 Classification for Video/Computer Gaming.

    Andrew Richards
    December 14, 2010 at 11:36 pm

    Hi Kate,
    First of all, I want to thank you for taking this stance on this issue which will not only give adults more freedom of choice, but arguably also protect children more effectively from age-inappropriate material, but will better inform parents and make them less likely to expose their children to said material.

    I posted the following as a comment on the ACL website in regards to an article they wrote on their “victory” regarding an R-18+ classification for gaming. It was not published interestingly enough- but then I guess that’s what the ACL does when they cannot refute an argument:

    Having just gotten off the phone to a member of the ACL, I am firmly convinced that the ACL’s infinite ignorance on this matter only serves to do more harm than good.

    What the ACL simply fails to understand is that the very games which they’re referring to as trying to prevent the introduction of are already here and they’re simply classified as MA after having sufficient content removed. However you still wind up with something which really is age innappropriate in the MA-15+ age bracket- simply because it ticks all the boxes, contrary to the “liberalisation of classification” claims of the spokesman for the ACL I spoke to over the phone.

    You have games such as Fallout 3 where exploding heads were removed making it fit into the MA-15+ category, but at the end of the day, you still wind up with a game which is filled with adult themes and which really should have been a R-18+ game which is simply classified as MA-15+ because it is merely has enough content cut from it to make it just fit into the classification. This is just one example of many games, such as the entire GTA series & COD: MW just to name a few of countless examples already on the market.

    The person I spoke to tried to point to other countries where liberalisation of the R-18+ ratings has taken place, however to try and connect that with Australia’s situation is like trying to add 1 and 1 together and coming up with 11.

    Australia’s current predicament is entirely to do with the lack of an R-18+ content rating. The problem with Australia’s ratings system is that when you have something which does not meet the standard for RC material, the only place it can go is to MA-15+ with enough changes made to make it just qualify for the rating.

    Simple reason suggests that the problem with the current MA-15+ ratings system not working is entirely due to there being a complete lack of scope within the current guidelines for material to be properly classified.

    Furthermore, an R-18+ rating actually allows for legal enforcement of age appropriateness of players, as there is no 15+ proof of age photo ID in the country, making the sale of games to those under 15 rather difficult to police.

    With an R-18+ rating you then have the ability to force retailers to be required to ask for ID before selling R rated games, while checking said stores for compliance as already happens with alcohol and cigarettes, putting in place similarly harsh penalties for non-compliance.

    Furthermore, the claims that people become violent because of video games are as ludicrous as the suggestion that violent movies encourage violence within movies.

    Maybe I missed something but I’m fairly certain that when the remake of “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” hit the cinemas, that we didn’t wind up with a an epidemic of chainsaw wielding homicidal maniacs.

    Furthermore, if anything, the escalating violence in Australia has more to do with the drinking culture of Australia which dates right back to the First fleet, when everyone was given copious alcohol rations to keep them supposedly drunk and subjugated.

    This isn’t coming from a concerned citizen, but someone who has been the victim of the very violence you seem to be in such a moral panic about. For simply asking someone to stop smoking on a train, I had 3 lower teeth snapped off at the base of the tooth socket which caused a 17cm long hairline fracture to the lower jaw and wound up with 2 fractures to the left eye socket. The attack was so vicious that doctors said it was a minor miracle that I wasn’t dead or a vegetable.

    The cause of the violence was conclusively proven to be alcohol- as it had been when he assaulted Police resulting in weekend detention and an alcohol ban which he was supposed to be on at the time I was attacked, just as it had been with every single other violent assault he’d committed going back from his current age of 35 to his late teens.

    The old saying of “guns don’t kill people, people kill people” completely holds true for this situation regarding video game classifications.

    The ACL have merely made a knee jerk reaction with neither the full facts nor history, and it is the children who are endangered by being exposed to age inappropriate material who truly suffer. Contrary to what you believe, you are not combating the escalating violence in this country, but merely vilifying the same convenient scapegoat which has been used for the past 2 decades to avoid dealing with the real causes of violence, such as bullying, child abuse, alcohol and gangs.

    You are not helping the problem, but merely giving it cover to continue to fester, despite how well intentioned you might be.

    But I honestly fully expect this comment to be deleted as judging by my being hung up on when the spokesperson I dealt with over the phone could not provide any kind of intelligent counterpoints to what I was saying; I’m inclined to believe that you merely sweep under the carpet what you cannot argue against. I would welcome being proved wrong here though.”

    I just thought you might find it interesting the kind of arguments which those zealots try and sweep under the carpet.

    Aaron C
    December 16, 2010 at 12:05 am

    Hello Senator i would personally like to thank you for bringing up this important issue,

    I run a small video game related website with about 50 members ranging 15 – 48

    when this idea was first introduced we had discussions about this and the younger of our site would like to see this take place.
    I love the idea as a studying game developer to be at the for front of this booming future for Australia

    Geronimo
    December 17, 2010 at 9:04 pm

    Hello Senator,

    I myself am an under age gamer, having my content mirrored by my mother. But I understand like all other adolescent children should, that is just how it is. Parents should be in complete control of what their child is viewing or playing, not the Australian government. Yes I know that the government has been saying games play a large part to violence in Australia, when it’s mainly drunken bogan’s having a go because they are blind drunk. I grew up with an abusive father, but to say that games caused that is quite insulting to me and all other people who have gone through domestic violence, people are as mean as they can be nice. I am 16 years old now and my mother will not let me play a game without first having a look at its classification and doing a little research on the internet to see whats involved and if she does not like what she see’s I do not get it, and that is the parents right, not some government bigwig on their high horse.

    Thank you for bringing this issue up,

    Geronimo

    Andrew Richards
    January 4, 2011 at 1:48 pm

    Geoff,
    Cigarettes, alchohol, marriage and the vote are also legally available to everyone over the age of 18. Do children also have easy access and more to the point, legal access, to those too?

    I think you just answered your own question regarding R18+ games and accessibility for children there.

    Joel Stig
    December 18, 2010 at 11:45 pm

    Well done for speaking up and getting this much needed debate started. An R18+ rating system makes sense considering the content available at the MA15+ level, and it would be great to get some unedited R18+ games. I wish I had been into GAME to sign the petition!

    Geoff
    December 23, 2010 at 2:40 pm

    Adding a R18+ rating is not about protecting people from being able to purchase a violent game but rather about letting people who want to indulge in such games to have them allowed into the country.

    Such a rating will allow more voilent and sexually orientated games into the country to which anyone (children included) will be able to play.

    It is a bad idea and should be rejected.

    Geronimo
    January 5, 2011 at 7:09 am

    It’s because of people like you, who think games turn children into murderers or towards violence and such. If you want your child to be protected from such content then take initiative and do it yourself, it’s not something a whole country should have to live with.

    It doesn’t matter if Australia goes on board with the R18+ classification, gamers will just get there games imported from other countries like I myself do. It’s quite stupid really that people are so afraid of a little animated blood on a computer screen, if parents are so worried wake up and pay more attention to your kids, plain and simple.

    John W Botting
    March 12, 2011 at 12:59 pm

    Well said Geronimo. If only more parents actually thought like you.

    James Rogerson
    December 27, 2010 at 2:04 pm

    Thank you very much Kate

    It is good Australia is finally getting the R18+ rating for video games. And I would also like to know whether games that have been previously banned/edited will be re-released such as:
    Soldier Of Fortune Payback
    Left 4 Dead 2
    Fallout 3

    Sam Chadwick
    December 28, 2010 at 12:04 am

    Thanks for bringing the subject to governments attention, this classification needs to be approved, playing games is going to be more and more of a thing as the future comes along ever so quickly. Games are able to be downloaded and pirated from America with the graphic violence that the government don’t allow us to play, yet we still have access to it, so why not make it a legal thing to buy in stores that way Australia makes revenue/profit. Kids these days have seen and heard it all, i myself am only just 18, i feel that gaming violence is a bit of fun, it doesn’t encourage someone to go out in to the world and act violently like most people claim. When something happens people like to blame something than rather take responsibility and a game has no way of defending itself so why not blame that? Anyway to sum up, i’m all for the 18+ rating.

    Cameron Jenkin
    December 29, 2010 at 12:13 pm

    Thank you for bringing up this issue, i believe it should be carried out as we are not getting the full gaming experience when we receive edited games that leave us missing out

    Toby
    December 30, 2010 at 6:59 pm

    Thank you for your opinion, but personally I believe that if a game needs an R 18+ rating it should not be released in the first place. Sure their are some violent games that may be enjoyable (Gears of War being the main one) others are simply disturbing, for example the Grand Theft Auto series. To me it seems that Australia’s censorship is very scary as we are letting games such as Grand theft auto into our country but banning or censoring others such as No More Heroes (the first installment). I believe that an 18+ rating could either be amazing or a complete disaster, something i have also witnessed with our film classifications. To get more to the point i actually support the keeping of our current system, allowing certain games in but others not. It seems to work well and keep people happy. If you ask me its the gamers that really need to be consulted…

    Andrew Richards
    January 4, 2011 at 1:54 pm

    So what about TV series like HBO’s Rome then with its historically accurate storyline, right down to the amount of gore, sex and violence involved (it DOES have an R rating)?

    How many individuals have been reported to go on a rash of violent and bloody crimes while indulging in rampant sex acts because of watching this series?

    Why are we so naive to think that games aimed at adults which may show just as much sex and violence as in that show, might amount to nothing more than a slasher porn experience and only appeal to the depraved in society?

    Is it seriously too much to ask for people in society to use some common sense here?

    Stefaan
    January 5, 2011 at 5:25 pm

    I can assure you Toby, as a 39 year old gamer I have utterly and totally no interest in the likes of Gears of War but very much in Grand Theft Auto, comparing the 2 is rather short sighted. GTA is very much aimed at adults, it has great writing, an adult narrative, it doesn’t at all glorify what people think that it does. If you would actually make the effort to play the game start to finish you would see that your criminal lifestyle does not come without it’s price, live by the sword, die by the sword is very cleverly handled in the game, yet it’s a great parody of pop culture and the society we live in.
    Judging a book by it’s cover is certainly something that keeps being repeated when it comes to games like GTA. Equally short sighted is your view that if a game needs an R18 rating it shouldn’t be released???
    So games are for children ONLY, adults should be forced to solely experience the cheesy space marine narrative of GOW, trust me adults want a lot more from their games then just more violence and sex which is such a total cop-out.
    Adults are also part of society and human beings tastes changes with age, this goes for any type of media which today includes games so how about thinking of the adults for a change, we shouldn’t be forced to stop enjoying video games as a form of entertainment media as soon as we turn 18.

    Sperilli
    December 31, 2010 at 3:00 pm

    Now this is an issue that i think should become a reality…because why make games unavalable to us when other countrys can play them when ever they want…Slap a R18+ on it and if you have to get them to ask for id when buying…Because IMO video stores have Adult Movies (R18+) why cant game stores sell Adult/Uncensored games.

    bailey
    January 7, 2011 at 3:18 am

    i got a game a few months ago and later found out that it was rated R in the U.S. the game got pushed down to MA without being changed meaning there’s 15 year olds in Australia playing games that they couldn’t play until they turn 18 in the U.S or like what happened to my friend, parents are going out and buying games for their 15 or younger kids games that should be rated R 18+
    thanks for bringing this important argument up Kate

    Roland Kulen
    January 7, 2011 at 12:07 pm

    That’s exactly right Bailey…In Australia parents have difficulty in understanding which games are suitable for over 18s and which games are not. As a parent, the current rating classification system does not provide “clarity” but rather “levels of uncertainty” whether a particular game is suitable for my children. We need to “protect kids from mature-themed games”.

    Some games are played by everyone, but some are really only meant for those over 18.

    Joshua
    January 8, 2011 at 7:31 pm

    the think about getting R 18+ rating ones is quite a few ppl will just get a friend who is 18 or their parents to buy them for the ppl who want them and when u get 18+, cos the developers know it is going to be rated R 18+ anyway, they normally have worse things in it than just killing and blood and gore and that. Normally they add in the 18+ ones nudity and that and just making them 18+ will only make more ppl want to get them and all they would have to do is give a friend who is over 18 or parent the money for the game and get them to buy them the game for them and then play it anyway cos how can u stop them playing them anyway once they are in their homes? u can’t! if u put 18+ ones all it will do is basically make the developers be able to have nudity in there and yer. just makes it worse with what they will b playing.

    Tommy
    January 10, 2011 at 2:56 am

    Thank the Lord this is being debated.

    The problem with this is that, R18 movies can be watched by kids aslong as they have parents with them, some when home alone will watch them. Look at movies like Saw that involve sickening gore and torture, they are being watched by kids as young as 7. Video Games not as violent as these movies. Yes they can give bad examples but most kids should know the difference between right and wrong. I say bring in the R18+ games, but let parents know what the games are like by telling them what is feature in those games. If a parent raises a child correctly they will know what is right and what is wrong.

    Times have changed dramatically in the past 10 years. Remember when swearing in movies or on tv was a big deal, now they are some of the most common words spoken on a film or tv show.

    These choices shouldnt also be decided by people who are over 50 years of age. They think that these things are so bad because they seem so realistic. The movies they saw had no actual scaryness compared to todays films. The gore isnt as bad and they think because in a game you can have sex with a prositute, kill her and get your money back, fly helicopters with gatling guns and rockets on them, steal cars, kill police etc. that it will happen in real life.

    Last time i checked, prostitutes were being killed long before tv’s, video games ever existed. And then not just anybody can steal a helicopter and blow things up with. Police were also being killed long before these things ever existed. Cars being stolen are the same.

    You cant blame video games, film, television or well just the whole entertainment industry for these things that happen. People should know the difference between real life and video games.

    Also the developers should be thought of aswell, because they have to work even harder to work their way around Australia’s video game classifications.

    Times have changed and the world is no longer what it was 10 years ago, you have to move with the times, nobody wants to be stuck in the midieval ages while other countries have flying cars. Grow up and stop ruining other peoples lives and just legalize the classification already. Its not like the kids can go instore and buy the games, they need parents too and parents can say yes or no to their children.

    Chris
    January 11, 2011 at 2:08 pm

    Good points you raised mate, but just had to correct you on your first argument about R18 movies and underage kids. It is actually untrue that underage kids can watch 18+ movies as long as they have an adult with them – that only applies to M15 and MA15 movies. The law in Australia is that ONNLY persons of minimum 18 years can watch a film rated R18, no matter the circumstance. If you have witnessed underage kids watching R18 movies, then that IS unfortunately a break of legislation and their parents/guardian/movie managers could get fined.

    Jiah Harris
    January 11, 2011 at 6:31 pm

    This better happen. I am absolutely annoyed with the fact that we keep missing out on games because we can’t be held responsible for our own actions against playing games with too much content. This country is supposed to be one of the countries everyone respects but I can’t even respect it when they treat us all like children. The R18 tag would stop kids from playing games that have been censored and get them outside more, so please just accept this after how many damn years of having to play childish games.

    Andrew
    January 16, 2011 at 8:10 pm

    I believe games do really need to be 18+ we do have movies rated 18+ why not games. It will help people choose the rite games and will help parents when buying games for there children. You will find out alot of people would like that idea.

    John
    January 19, 2011 at 10:09 pm

    I will continue spending my money overseas purchasing 18+ games until available in Australia. I buy one game a month,how many more are like me? and how much money is lost overseas because of game censorship (therefore loss of game originality and story) due to a lack of a 18+ rating?

    Liam
    January 23, 2011 at 8:52 pm

    Hi Senator Lundy,

    It is fantastic to see an important figure campaigning for an R18+ classification for video games. You make some very strong points in your speech which I feel cannot and should not be ignored by the opposing Attorney Generals. I am a “gamer” myself, and have been playing now for around 10 years. I feel it is imperative to have an updated classification system for interactive entertainment, for all of the reasons which you have stated in your argument. Even my parents, who have never played a video game in their life and are now in their 50’s agree with your stance. People who oppose an R18+ rating for interactive entertainment generally seem to be grossly misinformed about video games and their purpose. An R rating would not make a difference at all to the amount of games with adult content entering Australia. People who really want the banned games simply order them from overseas anyway. This is about the government taking responsibility for a poor and ambiguous classifications system which allows children to play games including content which simply may not be suitable for them, and which is confusing to parents. Another point I would like to make is that there are many video games out there which have artistic merit, much like many films do. As more and more adult oriented games enter the market to target the average 30 year old gamer, they are evolving and becoming more like interactive stories than simple childrens games. So why allow films with adult content and not video games? The games industry is far bigger than it was 10 years ago, and is still growing strong. So I ask, how long will it be before Australia lets its people make their own informed choices with a sufficient classification system, rather than having misinformed and close minded people choose for us? Lets catch up to the rest of the world.

    Good luck in your campaign and remember that 91% of ALL adults in Australia, not just gamers, are behind you.

    Mat
    January 24, 2011 at 9:44 am

    my parents would still let me play them the game hasnt changed ,just the rating

    John W Botting
    March 12, 2011 at 1:12 pm

    Actually you’ll find that once we have a R18+ some things will be different. For starters the zombies from Left For Dead 2 won’t disappear, plus lots of other little things that will make a huge difference. Believe me, once your parents see the game under the new R18+ banner, you won’t be playing them for long. And if they do let you, then it’s their choice and thu have been properly warned. That’s what the R18+ is for, to help parents decide what’s best for their children.

    Rob McDaid
    January 27, 2011 at 6:28 pm

    I certainly hope an R18+ rating is put in place. I am 28 years old and I have been playing computer / console games since the Atari was first released here. The video game industry is a multi billion industry and most of that money comes from people 18 years and older. There is an R18+ rating for movies, even a XXX rating, so why can’t there be an R18+ rating for games? We only want what is fair, and that is to be able to play games suited to our age. There are many games that have to be edited from their original design to make it in to australia, this makes the game experiance less enjoyable. I hope the government give the R18+ rating a green light, at least trial it for a year and see how it goes.

    Simon Darmody
    January 31, 2011 at 1:04 pm

    I believe Australia needs an 18+ rating as we believe in free speach and that we shouldn’t uphold the creation of a Nanny State. If you’re worried people might get the wrong idea from playing a video game than spend more on education!

    jonny
    February 1, 2011 at 6:00 pm

    dear Senator,

    thank you for addressing this issue, as a gamer i have come across lots of in game content that i would hope children or even teenagers should not be exposed to. many games include graphic violence, prostitution, drug use and references. these are not things i as a soon to be father want my children to be witness to. i understand fully that parents do have an obligation to monitor what there kids are playing, but also the government must realize that no matter how much mum and and dad are looking “i am gonna do it when there not” i know this for a fact because when my mother was working that is what i used to do.

    on a lighter note, thanks senator.
    kind regards, Jonny Endall

    Ian
    February 8, 2011 at 7:35 am

    Australia needs to stop holding the hands of the populace and start running the country for which the government and people are voted in for.
    Games are just that, games, as an adult and gamer i have the right through birth into a free country to buy/use whatever i deem fit for myself and others in my family. Creating restrictions on ADULTS is like saying “you are to stupid to know what you want, we will tell you what you want”, if this is the case, i might as well go live in China or north Korea.
    There is such a small minority of people out there that gets these restrictions passed(the ones that gives government parties donations),that it looks like everyone else is just here to earn taxes for the government. In fact its the majority that needs to be listened to.
    Well done in putting this forward. The 18+(VOTERS)people of Australia have a god/birth given right to choose for themselves on what they will and will not buy.

    David Howell
    February 10, 2011 at 11:29 pm

    Without an 18+ rating, games that otherwise would be restricted to minors are censored and enter the Australian market with an unenforced MA 15+ rating. Unenforced because a shop can sell those to an 8 year old with no penalty.

    Censoring a game solely because there is no 18+ rating will do one or two tragic things. Firstly it will ruin the director’s vision leading to poor reviews and damaged sales and job loss. I tender the ‘left for dead 2′ example which you can read about elsewhere. Secondly it will be done inadequately and content not intended for children will slip through. I give the example of the entire ‘grand theft auto’ series.

    Note also that a game may take 20+ hours to play through to the end, and that they are often not linear. Whereas with a movie a censor can easily sit through and take in the piece or work in its entirety, a modern ‘sandbox’ style game can take many branches, twists and turns away from the main story arc. These side plots can lead to content that should never be available to children and could never hope to be adequately reviewed by censors. For this problem i cannot blame the censor. They are doing the best they can with an inappropriate system.

    As a final argument consider this; if a game has even the slightest hint of not-for-minors content then it should be restricted in the most sensible and practical way, as 18+, otherwise people will just buy it online from another country with completely lax classification laws.

    We MUST have an 18+ classification to bring the movie-revenue-busting video game industry inline with the rest of the entertainment industry. Our children deserve better than the current shambles, and responsible adults can make up their own minds if we are to call ourselves a democracy.

    Feel free to email me and discuss this further as an ordinary citizen.

    Mark
    February 12, 2011 at 8:42 am

    I would like to thank any and everyone who supports the 18+ rating on games. I would like to say that the average age of gamers is over 20 and we are the ones with money to be buying games. If anyone says that we shouldn’t have 18+ games because of the kids is so WRONG.
    1 For starters kids wouldn’t have the money to buy games, the parents buy the games for them, so DON’T BUY YOUR KIDS GAMES THEN COMPLAIN ABOUT THE GAME, if u dont wont your kid to play them dont buy them it in the first place.
    2 It should be behind the counter and sold like every thing else that’s 18+, eg. smokes and alcohol. That way the majority of gamers can enjoy their games. This way kids can’t get the games, you wouldn’t buy your kid a R rated movie than complain they are watching it.
    3 The average age of gamers are 25-25 so why shouldn’t we be able to play games. It’s just like smoking, drinking, driving and watching movies all have an age you have to be to do so.
    4 The parents who complain about games are nine times out of ten the ones who buy the game for the kid. So dont blame the games, because they are not sutible for your child, that’s why there is ratings on these games so you know what the game contains before you buy it for your child.

    Grow up and stop being a joy kill, if you were a good parent then your kid wouldn’t be playing these games. These are the same parents who would buy their children alcohole and if anything happens it’s the alcohole thats to blame never the parents. IF YOU BOUGHT YOUR KID IT, THEN ITS YOUR FAULT.

    AN EXAMPLE OF STUPID PARENTS
    I was playing a war game on xbox live with my mate and i got shot and accidently said shit. A kids parent jumped on the head set and started to up me for swearing in front of her 8 year old child. I told her that the game was rated M 15+ and was about war and full of blood and stuff unsutable for a kid, she then told me that its ok for him to kill people in the game but she dosen’t want her kid to hear such language. Thats why her son only plays online because single player was unsuitable for him. Then i went on to tell her that the game also has the “f” word at the start and end of every online match, turns out to be over 10 times an hour. This is just an example of parents who need to think about what they are doing.

    Why can’t this world grow up, if the parents raised their kids and stop pointing blame at the products instead of waking up and except the fact that it might have to do with the fact you bought it for your child then its your fault. If we have it sold like drinks or smokes then the kid wouldn’t be able to buy it

    To wrap this up thank you to anyone who supports the R rating for games. and sorry for the length of this, as you might be able to tell i have strong feelings about this, and dont understand why we should miss out.

    Adam
    February 22, 2011 at 3:40 pm

    Actually, the average gamer is 30.

    Good job Senator!

    Adrian
    February 27, 2011 at 9:26 am

    hi senator,

    i really appreciate your work but can you work your fingers into convincing that Mortal Kombat 9 can be allowed in australia.

    Daniel Dorre
    March 4, 2011 at 2:32 pm

    allow 18+ ratings for video games i dont understand why pornos are allowed and TV shows like underbelly are allowed but a video game inst…we are in the 21 century come on allow Australians to make there own choices what about freedom of choice the OLFC are just dictating to responsible citizens of Australia what they can an cant view SHAME ON THEM.

    Leo
    March 5, 2011 at 8:05 pm

    Thanks for the push senator.

    Michael Kling
    March 10, 2011 at 9:48 am

    Kate

    Im glad someone is speaking up about this issue. Being a long time video game player back in the 80’s i am at an age where i am looking a purchasing adult content games. How is this any different from any other media? Being a playstation 3 owner this does not stop me from playing R18 games. The playstation 3 is a region free console so ill just get my copy of mortal kombat 9 from america. This then begs the question of why would australia want people to purchase items outside our contry and effect the economy?

    thanks

    Michael Kling
    March 10, 2011 at 9:50 am

    I also do feel without a r18 classification some games that have heavy adult in other contries are allowed to be played by minors here. why would we allow this

    matt
    March 10, 2011 at 5:07 pm

    R18+ is a bad idea!!!!

    John W Botting
    March 15, 2011 at 11:28 am

    Care to elaborate?

    Lindsay Buttery
    March 11, 2011 at 8:22 pm

    Hi Kate and all
    I could wax-on forever about this emotive and vitally important issue. I will try to refrain, (although I don’t like my chances) and simply echo the comments of most here and add that I am an ‘older’ gamer, being 55 yrs old in just a few months time, yet I have 5 children ranging from 5 through 15yrs of age, all of whom game in one way or another.
    I am thus concerned on several very obvious levels.
    I am very sure that I am far from alone in my situation – gaming has evolved so much, and it is this, perhaps more than anything else, where games have such intense levels of realism now as to be indistinguishable from film, and better/more important yet, are so immersive and engaging…..couple these aspects together, and surely, even a blind man can see the very real need for this classification nonsense to finally get sorted-out. As technology progresses and games become ever more immersive and real, so will things worsen….games WILL become more and more realistic and the potential for harm will intensify accordingly. Classification will not be the panacea, the magic bullet to fix all things, but it will go some way towards protecting those we love & care about and delivering what we, the people who play the games, truly want and deserve.
    Like anything else, too, shoving something underground will not remove the capability of people obtaining what they really want – what it will do, though, is hurt local industry as they lose countless dollars and income as people source materials from overseas. It is very much burying one’s head in the sand and ‘blinkered’ to think in these ways
    How hard is all of this to figure out, for those with powers to make real and important changes, I mean, seriously??
    It really is one of those issues where not too much really needs to be thought about at all – it’s very tempting to say it’s a ‘no-brainer’ especially in light of zombies making so many popular and recent returns to so many games – but jesting aside, as legislation, it should simply be passed and not, yet again, be put on the back-burner to be forgotten about…….far too much time is so often spent by government on far lesser issues than this, day after day, and it beggars belief that it still all hangs in the balance, it really does.
    Thank you for speaking out on behalf of adult and ‘adult thinking’ mature, responsible gamers everywhere, and please keep up the fight on our collective behalf, as there clearly remains a massive need.
    With Thanks
    Lindsay

    Matt B
    March 17, 2011 at 1:05 pm

    I completely agree with the R18+ rating, as adults we are responsible to decide what is right and wrong for us to own/ participate in. While certain laws are there to protect the community and individuals, there is nothing unlawful about playing a video game, and anyone affected by video games, clearly had a deeper seeded problem to begin with.

    Let adults decide for themselves what is appropriate for them to view and play, not the government

    Andrew Richards
    March 18, 2011 at 2:08 pm

    Kate, the latest issue with the ratings system has just proven how ludicrous it really is. Mortal Kombat 9 ha just been refused classification and anyone importing it faces a $110,000 fine.

    I am not denying for one minute that it’s a gory series of fighting games, however let’s be honest. The Mortal Kombat series of games are no more violent or gory than the follow few examples of movies:

    Saw series
    Texas Chainsaw Massacre
    Hellraiser series

    That’s not even including sci-fi movies like the Predator series which feature humans being skinned alive, or Robocop 2 which features a scene where one of the villains undergoes a live dissection.

    All of these movies are simply classified as R18+ due to their content. As the content is the same then surely if the content is acceptable for movies then it should be acceptable for games as games are arguably interactive movies. Therefore an R18+ rating for games would do no more than ensure that the ratings system had been updated to take into account changed in the entertainment industry.

    All that is being proposed here is a logical way to deal with this situation.

    Andrew Langdon
    March 24, 2011 at 11:48 am

    Its ridiculous really, when classifying a game the makers go before a classification board and fight to get their game rated how they want. If an MA game is deemed too violent they need to edit it or it is banned.
    An R18+ rating gives another option to the classification board, if they makers think that censoring a game will ruin it then it would have to be made R18+, and whilst parents think this will just allow kids to buy increasingly violent games maybe rather than looking at the makers for responsibility they should look at themselves. An R18+ game can only be bought by a person over 18. Maybe now parents will pay more attention to what they’re kids are playing.
    That however is not to say that the makers will not try to make they’re games MA, in the eyes of parents MA is forgivable but what parent wants to look at their kids games and see a row of R18+, that would mean less money for the maker because parents would try not to buy such highly rated games. However such a game would be looked at more by gamers in my age range, the 18 to 25 year old gamers.
    It’s all about balance.

    Joe Hancock
    April 3, 2011 at 7:02 pm

    I find this to be a rather important issue and I sure am hoping that they get their act together and solve this problem once and for all.
    Thanks for your support Kate.

    Bec
    April 4, 2011 at 12:41 pm

    Finally someone has stepped up and raised this issue.
    I feel that we need this R18+ on video games due to a number of reasons:
    1. Us people of the age 18 and up enjoy the graphic content of some games – we would have enjoyed the gruesome Left 4 Dead 2, or example.
    2. The swearing used in many games nowadays is not suitable for under 18’s. So there should be a R+ rating.

    We are adults, we need our own classification type.
    Why ruin in for us all by removing graphic content and swearing?

    Goodluck on it all!
    I hope it gets passed for sure!
    Thanks for the support Kate!!!

    Vik
    April 11, 2011 at 6:03 am

    Thank you for putting in your efforts.

    Adam Evans
    April 11, 2011 at 7:35 pm

    Most game now days are MA15+ and are by my vote the best. Now im a teen and i love my video games, so do many teens at my school. Now the government has already made most fun activities seen by teens over 18 years of age, dont take our games from us. Besides have you seen the PG and G games, there for 5 year olds really. I understand that games may contain pornographic content or ultra high level of violence but it says that on the the sticker where it says MA15+. Parents see it, so do the teens. If parents dont like there child playing thee types of games they can take it away from the child, but not from the everyone else. This is how we grow up and learn, i know and im pretty sure 50% of my knowledge came from video games, its not just only for enjoyment purposes but also educational. Just don’t take the joy of being a teen with video games away from us.

    John Botting
    April 13, 2011 at 9:59 am

    We aren’t trying to take away your games. We’re trying to make the future of games shine. You might be under 18 now, but think about when you get older, do you really nor want to have games that you can enjoy as an adult? You seem to be shortsighted about this issue, I suggest you take a step back, look at the information people have provided and think about what kind of games you might want to play as an adult. You think that G and PG are for 5 year old kids, wait until you get older, that’s what you might think about MA15+ games in 10 years.

    Adam
    April 14, 2011 at 9:46 am

    That is true, but here im going to use America as an example. America has many games and most games populate from there, But there MA15+ games are so over rated and so violent that they have to adjust the game so its less violent when they come to Australia, why not let the adults here in Australia have the higher level of violence, and let us teenagers have the ones we already got. Because that way you arnt changing stuff around, Us teens will be happy with the games we got and keep them coming the way they are, and adults have the higher level up. By means this really does agree with your points, but don’t slap a R18+ game marking on the video games, At least have a section in games shops were is says Adults only like in Video stores ( even though most of that section is porn 0.o )

    John Botting
    April 14, 2011 at 5:07 pm

    Sorry, guess I wasn’t very clear. I don’t want them to take away games that deserve a MA15+, like Call Of Duty: Black ops, I want them to take away and put an R18+ rating on games that deserve it, like Dead Space 2, I was surprised that game even made it into Australia, it has gross amounts of blood and violence and even has the player killing babies, sure they’re mutated killer babies, but they’re babies none the less and yet the new Mortal Kombat game is banned and anyone found buying it from overseas has a massive fine slapped on them. It’s one thing to not have a R18+ rating, it’s a completely different thing to actually ban adults, people who are over 18 and know what they want, from getting a game. I want you to think about this, how long will it be when you become 18 and start wanting games that have content that fit your age group? It’s fine for you now, you’re still under 18 and all the games you play are age appropriate(occansionally), I’m over 18 and would like to play some games that I can relate to, with out all the content being stripped away, eg: the zombies from Left For Dead 2, you buy that game anywhere else in the world and the zombies you kill stay dead, you buy that exact same game here, in Australia, the disappear almost before touching the ground just to reappear around the next corner. Having an R18+ rating for games will allow game developers the ability to create games for all ages without having to worry about them being chopped up or banned completely(unless they really are inappropriate), it will let a new even better generation of games through.

    And think about it, this way you’ll have something to look forward too, other than voting lol

    Andrew Richards
    April 14, 2011 at 1:56 pm

    Sorry Adam, but your response here makes as much sense as a teenager saying “don’t take away my grog”. The reality is that some games out there, due to their content, should only be played by adults due to their content just as movies that are R or X rated, should only be watched by adults due to their content.

    Personally I argue the complete opposite to you- that the MA rating should be done away entirely and the scope of what fits into it but not an M rating, should be simply slotted into the bottom end of an R rating.

    You talk about the graphical nature of some games, but that is what it being targeted here. Games like GTA should never be played by a 12 year old. Period. Likewise for kids in their young teens.

    You say “If parents dont like there child playing thee types of games they can take it away from the child”, but should parents be allowed to buy their kids heroin and allow them to shoot up too, or cigarettes and let them smoke, or take the keys to their car and go out joyriding when they’re unlicenced and underage? How is this any different?

    The only games which would be taken away from teenagers are those which they should never have been allowed to play to begin with. Furthermore if anything, such a move would arguably increase the number of games on the Australian market as you would have games developers bringing out games to fill the gap this formed in the market by making games to fit into the upper end of the PG rating and the M rating.

    As a gamer of over 20 years, I fail to see the problem here and if anything argue that the move to an R rating can only be a positive. If teenagers are dying to play a game with an R rating, they’ll still be just as keen to play it when they hit 18. It wouldn’t be the first time a gamer has seen a game they somehow missed but then spotted it a few years down the track and snapped it up…

    francis olsen
    April 15, 2011 at 10:56 am

    come on fair go it is unfair that the adult gamers of australila have been punished for the lack of a r 18+ rating for video game i.e Mortal Kombat Video Game For the Ps3 its unfair every other country is have it release why do we have to suffer kind regards francis olsen geelong Australia

    Adam
    April 15, 2011 at 5:15 pm

    Alright, I do see your point now. I mean i see the Adults they must of been craving for mortal kombat more than me and for them to have it taken away must suck. Just as long as the games which we still get now stay the same for us. But very true, I guess we shall just have to wait and see how this all roles out then. Andrew i do understand that you were using the Alcohol and Cigerattes as an example but i see on the news that they blame teenagers for bad behaviour over this, but i just want to point out. Not all teens like it, i personaly dont like either of them, and seeing people drink and smoke well i just think what for? and i know alot of my mates think the same, but back to the point, excellent points people i do understand now. cheers for the amazing chat, its not everyday you get one like this. WA Rockingham, Adam :D

    tristan
    April 19, 2011 at 10:45 am

    thank you so much im 32 and wondering why its taking so long to get r18+ games in aus an think you could have done it

    Shayne Aberhart
    April 23, 2011 at 2:15 am

    I Love you Kate Lundy! Keep up the good work!!!

    Matt Jones
    May 5, 2011 at 10:19 am

    Finally yes, this is exaclty what Austalia needs. we need to advance our media laws as it is a widespread and vastly growing market. the MA 15+ games contain content that i doubt is appropiate from a 15 year old. Examples include the grand theft auto series. my son is 15 and is able to play it and every 15 seconds all i hear are gunshots, coarse language and can see violence. These laws need to be updated and R18+ would ensure that adult games are sold to adult gamers only. Thank you for speaking on behalf of all adult australians, simply banning these games is like an ostrich. when it sees danger it just hides its head in a hole. it dosent make the danger go away, only seems that way same here banning wont resolve the problem. YES TO R18+

    Luke Shaw
    June 12, 2011 at 2:34 am

    Personally, I think that not having an R18+ rating for games takes us a down a peg for the “hardcore gamer” or “MLG”.
    It’s ridiculous.