Australia’s R18 Computer Games Classification – 10 Years of Debate & Inactivity – Are We Any Closer?
Canberra, Australia (News4us.com) March 16, 2011
While Gamers around Australia hold their breath for the up-coming decision on the government’s highly controversial R18 computer games classification, the debate slowly rages on.
In a recent interview with ABC television, the Minister for Home Affairs and Justice, Brendan O’Connor MP gave a little more insight into the Federal Government’s stance on the subject and his view on an antiquated state based classification system.
Minister Brendan O’Connor made it quite clear that the Federal Government knew what had to be done, in order to bring Australia’s computer games classification system in line with the rest of the modern world.
He stated “We need a R18 classification for video games so we can be similar to the United Kingdom, all of Europe and New Zealand, the United States and other countries.”
The Minister went on to say that Australia was falling behind the rest of the world due to our outdated classification system. It was causing a number of problems, including not protecting our younger Game players.
“The Attorney-General’s of each state need to properly consider what is being put to them by the Commonwealth” he said. “Technologies are converging at an extremely fast rate and we are seeing film and entertainment merging into one evolving technology”.
“A more effective classification system is needed for these fast growing popular technologies, where at this time we have totally different classifications for each”.
“This is a problem” he said.
Another important issue pointed out by the Minister was that unlike overseas, where only adults have access to these high classified games. In Australia we have adults who are unable to play these types of popular games due to the law, while tech savvy 15 year olds can gain direct access to them.
“So we have a real problem with that and we need to fix it fast” he said.
Supervision and parental guidance is seen as definite requirement to successfully police these types of new classification laws. Those laws need to be in place as they not only deter the choices parents make, but also provide better guidance for those who are more technically challenged or unfamiliar with the electronic games industry.
The Minister did make it clear during the interview, that if the Attorney General’s did not reach a consensus in July, then the Commonwealth would be considering other options.
The minister did not expand any further on this statement beyond that he would be seeking advice.
After ten years of inaction, will Australia finally catch up to the rest of the modern world?
According to Minister for Home Affairs and Justice, Brendan O’Connor, “My preference, my very strong preference, is to have consent around the table in July to make sure we have a better classification system.”
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