Congress Is Courting Another "Video Games Are Bad, Mkay" Warning Label Law

Congress Is Courting Another "Video Games Are Bad, Mkay" Warning Label Law

US congressmen Frank Wolf (R-Va) and Joe Baca (D-Calif.) have introduced yet another bill to get warning labels slapped on video games. This one doesn't even discriminate by type or rating; it simply covers all games rated E, E10, T, M or A. When was the last time we even had an A(dult)-rated game in this country? Never?

Game packaging (or descriptions, in cases of digital products) would be required to carry a notice that read: "WARNING: Exposure to violent video games has been linked to aggressive behavior."

"Just as we warn smokers of the health consequences of tobacco, we should warn parents — and children — about the growing scientific evidence demonstrating a relationship between violent video games and violent behavior," said Wolf.

By that logic, should we slap warning labels on violent movies and have warnings before violent TV shows? Let's throw rap and metal in there too, along with comic books and cartoons. We can put a warning label on unhealthy food while we're at it. We're guessing there are more fat kids running around than there are 10-year-old serial killers, after all.

"Representative Baca's facially unconstitutional bill — which has been introduced to no avail in each of six successive Congressional sessions, beginning in 2002 — needlessly concerns parents with flawed research and junk science," the ESA's Rich Taylor told Gamasutra. "Numerous medical experts, research authorities, and courts across the country, including the United States Supreme Court, exhaustively reviewed the research Representative Baca uses to base his bill and found it lacking and unpersuasive. Independent scientific researchers found no causal connection between video games and real life violence."

Read the bill for yourself (here's a PDF) and make sure to bitch about this on Twitter so these idiots will get the attention they deserve.

Tags: video-game-laws, congress, warning-label, politics, violent-video-games
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