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Games Government Entertainment Politics

ESRB Retorts to NIMF 52

Posted by Zonk
from the go-away-or-i-shall-taunt-you-a-second-time dept.
The ESRB has has released a statement condemning the National Institute for Media and the Family's analysis of the gaming industry and the ESRB. Specifically, the ESRB questions the group's research and bias in issuing the original damning analysis of the ratings board. From the article: "On points where the ESRB's methodology was questioned, the ratings board said that the real reason for the relatively low number of Adults-Only titles was a publisher-level determination to modify game content to avoid the AO label, which will usually prevent a title from being carried at retail."
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ESRB Retorts to NIMF

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  • Um. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Seumas (6865) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @01:43PM (#14204035)
    So basically, the NIMF is upset that the free-market determined that adult-only titles aren't worth selling rather than NIMF getting to decide it for them?
  • by TripMaster Monkey (862126) * on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @01:48PM (#14204082)

    Don't Christians comprise something on the order of 80% of the population of the U.S.? It seems to me that if these 'concerned citizens' actually took the time to parent their children, the issue of violent video games corrupting our nation's youth wouldn't be an issue...but it's ever so much easier to abdicate responsibility to a group who claims they're 'looking out for the children'. <sarcasm>Heck, all you have to do is read the first sentence of the tenth annual MediaWise video game 'report card' ("Risk to Children Continues to Grow") to know that these people are genuinely concerned about the safety of our little ones.</sarcasm>

    Fellow Christians, I offer you a challenge: Quit trying to legislate morality, and start teaching it instead. Quit trying to lead by coercion, and instead lead by example. Look to the beam in your own eye before you try to remove the mote from your brother's eye.
    • Anyone who has any sense already agrees with what you are saying. The problem is, is that the situation has nothing to do with common sense and everything to do with making noise and a big stink to get exposure. I'm not even sure if Christian groups like this one even care so much about the outcome of their actions as much as long as they get to come around to their way of thinking. Maybe they might as well call themselves the National Institute for Advertising Christian Values?

      • You're entirely right...the people involved in this aren't as interested in promotiong and preserving good Christian values as they are about justifying their own existence through rabid fearmongering and shameless self-aggrandizement. Thus, when confronted with an organization that actually helps to protect children through a rating system (which actually has a decent track record), their response is not to try to work with this organization, but decry its work as a failure.
        • I'm tired of this "good Christian" this and "good Christian" that.
          What, like the rest of us are assholes?
           
          Who started the Crusades? People with Christian values.
          Remember Mahatma "I'd be a Christian if it were not for the Christians!" Ghandi? He seemed like an alright guy to me.
           
          Come on. Just because you're not Christian doesn't mean you don't have morals.
    • by steveo777 (183629) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @02:02PM (#14204189) Homepage Journal
      Quit trying to legislate morality, and start teaching it instead.

      The problem is that too many people are too lazy to teach their kids. And too many people who we don't want teaching our kids are trying legislate their beliefs into them. Yes, teaching the kids works great. But there are too many poeple with too loud voices that are reaching throught the law to try to make what they want to be right, right. In other word (not saying they're the best institutions) private schools will teach your kids what you want them to, but public schools will teach what the loudest complainer wants them to.

      The majority can only rule if they'll get off their asses and do something about it.

    • As a parent I agree with you entirly. Though I do tend to have frequent problems with my childs friends exposing them to unappropriate content (I'm sorry but I don't think a 7 year old should be watching South Park.. call me ultraconservative if you wish.. though he first season should be watched by all! :)

      Anyways, as a realist I understand that this isn't the governments job, though it is kinda depressing when I have to explain to my kid that she can't play at so in sos house because their parents don't u
    • by WidescreenFreak (830043) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @02:13PM (#14204255) Homepage Journal
      Whereas the essence of your post is correct, I find it irresponsible of you to target Christians in your post. The simple fact of the matter is that whereas most people might identify themselves as Christians, the majority of them probably don't live up to the standards that they claim Christ represents.

      Personally, I'm agnostic. So, why do you not also direct your challenge to me? The simple fact is that parents regardless of their religious beliefs or identification should be should be held to the same level of responsibility. Whether the parents are Jewish, Muslim, Christian, agnostic, or even athiest, personal responsibility and the need to properly raise children in moral and ethical values is totally unrelated to their religious beliefs. All parents should be challenged to lead by example, not just Christian parents.

      Now, I understand that NIMF is a Christian group, but to target your challenge solely at Christians is irresponsible - some might argue that it's mildly inflammatory as well. I'm sure there are parents in other religions who would love to legislate morality as well, and that's just as wrong. One need only look to non-Christian theocracies in other parts of the world to see what life is like when morality is dictated by law. So, from that perspective we're in complete agreement; however, all parents should be teaching their kids right from wrong, regardless of religious beliefs - or lack thereof - or the target of said teaching, be it video games, TV, movies, music, etc.
      • Yea, but what if the parent is Satanic or a Scientologist even, do we really want them teaching morality! :)

        Yea its flame bait, though for a bit of fact I know someone who used to be in Scientology who states that a big part of their teaching is that morality is whatever gets the best result for you and you should strive to bend the rules as much as possible to succeed.
        • No, it's certainly valid. I wouldn't consider it to be flamebait, although I will confess that it does expose a chink in my argument's armor. :) Morality and ethics in many ways (if not exclusively) represent how you would treat others. So, someone who has good ethics and morals should be looking out for the betterment of others if not all, whereas the examples that you give are religions that from my understanding are self-serving and irresponsible with respect to others. So, would be be able to truly e

      • Whereas the essence of your post is correct, I find it irresponsible of you to target Christians in your post.

        All I'm doing is targeting the people responsible for the problem.

        The simple fact of the matter is that whereas most people might identify themselves as Christians, the majority of them probably don't live up to the standards that they claim Christ represents.

        Which I believe was the substance of my previous post.

        Personally, I'm agnostic. So, why do you not also direct your challenge to me?

        Becaus
        • Okay. I can do the "breaking up the response into multiple segments" thing as well. (Someone refresh my memory on that term, please.)

          All I'm doing is targeting the people responsible for the problem.

          Nice blanket statement. There is nothing to indicate that NIMF is 100% Christian. I have no doubt that all major demononations are represented within, regardless of the percentage.

          I just find it galling that fundamentalists can preach about what is best for America, but throw up their hands and admi

          • Nice blanket statement. There is nothing to indicate that NIMF is 100% Christian.

            Nice straw man. There is nothing in my posts that claims it is.

            Oh, come now. That's a cop-out. We see this all over the place.

            If you had actually read through my last post, you would have seen that I am not portraying this as a purely Christian issue. Here's the last paragraph again for you:

            In conclusion, when I challenged Christians to lead by example, I certainly didn't mean that exclusively...I only targeted my fellow Chr

            • You apparently need to go back and look at your posts. "All I'm doing is targeting the people responsible for the problem." You make a declaration to Christians that you challenge them to be parents then follow up with the statement that you're targeting the responsible people, then expect people not to make the correlation that you are accusing NIMF of being a Christian group or at worst that only Christians are responsible for this surge in refusing to take parental responsibility? Wow.

              Actually, wha

              • You make a declaration to Christians that you challenge them to be parents then follow up with the statement that you're targeting the responsible people, then expect people not to make the correlation that you are accusing NIMF of being a Christian group or at worst that only Christians are responsible for this surge in refusing to take parental responsibility? Wow.

                I expect others to read through my entire post and rationally discuss the contents. You, however, seem more comfortable cherry-picking indivi
                • I also expect others to debate me without distorting my position, but I see you aren't up to that, either. In my last post, I pointed out two of your distortions, and invited you to support them with fact. Since you didn't bother to address either, I'll repeat them: * You claimed that I said the NIMF was 100% Christian. * You claimed that I said the NIMF was Christian by design.
                  Whether you meant it or not, it really did come off as you implying those things. Probably not intentional, but thats a
                • I know you can't do this on the internet, TripMaster, but there is a little thing I've started to doing to people when they're stupid infront of me in an arguement.

                  I slap the shit out of them. If they attempt to have me arrested, I will profess that since I am ordained, and a Discordian Zen-Buddhist Master, I was giving them religious counselling by slapping them. I.E., trying to snap them out of their rut.

    • I agree on principle that American, and western generally, culture needs to learn to exercise responsibility. However no parent has the time or resources to personally test every aspect of a product before giving it to a child.

      Would you personally smother your face with every product, or lick it, or swallow it, or stand on it, just to see if it's suitable or safe for your kids? Doesn't the label saying "not safe for 0-3 year olds" help just that little bit? The ratings system is perfectly fine as an advisor
      • (Grandparent forgive me if I'm putting words in your mouth)

        I think you are misunderstanding his (the grandparent's) point. He is neither advocating micro-management style parenting NOR claiming that "not safe for 0-3 year olds" types of labels aren't useful as a guideline. Rather, his point (nee, my interpretation of it) is that people and organizations with goals and thinking similar to this NIMF outfit are trying to legislate morality and basically tell you, "We know what's right for your children, an
      • Well, yes it is hard to test every aspect, and we need ressources. But here the problem is that we don't always listen or even take care about those ressources.

        It stays the matter of the parent to actually make sure that it is good for their child. When I'm buying a game named Grand Theft Auto, I can assure you that I'm not waiting for a 6yo game. Even without the M or AO rating. And with a quick look to the game boxcase, it is even easier to do that. If you are not really sure of the content, then just
      • However no parent has the time or resources to personally test every aspect of a product before giving it to a child.

        Then they can:
        a) Look at the box
        b) Read it's rating on the box (we're talking games marked 'M' for Mature as in 17+ here)
        c) Read what game reviewers and "christian" groups are saying about it

        They don't have to review the game, they just have to see what people are saying about the game.
    • The problem is those damn 20% who raise their kids atheist or jewish or hindu or whatever. You never know when one of those kids is going to show up at your kids school and start shooting up the place. Do you seriously want to leave the responsibility over whether your child lives or dies to other parents??? Face reality, we need laws to force parents to be responsible, and to constrain their children for the sake of ours when those parents aren't responsible.

      • Face reality, we need laws to force parents to be responsible, and to constrain their children for the sake of ours when those parents aren't responsible.

        Sure, I agree. This is why I think we should never try minors as adults, and parents should share in the punishment for the crimes of their children (besides possible civil tort for damages.) People need more motivation to be responsible parents.

        When someone's minor-age child kills someone, I vote we sterilize the parent.

  • So let me get this straight that fewer titles rated AO is bad or is it bad that there are not more titles that get the AO rating. They have me confused. I thought they wanted fewer AO titles. hehe.
  • by hal2814 (725639) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @01:56PM (#14204136)
    Adults Only is a pretty bad rating to have on your game as it severly cripples your potential shelf space. Looks to me like the NIMF wants the ESRB to start handing out AOs like candy. That's just a bad idea. Watering down what AO stands for will just lead to more stores stocking AO titles and will lead to the need for some sort of Super AO category.
    • I'd prefer if they did that and games stopped cutting content just because some manager at Walmart decided it'd be good for their image not to sell such "evil" games.
      • Everyone can point the finger. If game producers didn't create games that causes people to think twice--once their kid has started playing it because the game box looed harmless, this would not be an issue. 80 to 90% of the games produced today are just plain stupid with lacking in imagination and creativity. Instead, the rely on killing people and such to get kids to ask for it.
        Whether you like it, or not, this is a somewhat capitalistic society, and if place like Walmart find out
        • I'm not sure why Walmart is doing that but I doubt people would really boycott them because of such a minor thing (and hell, how many people can really boycott Walmart in the US?).

          This creates an artificial barrier for game content especially since the AO label is given out very quickly for even nudity. Sure, excessive violence doesn't need to be in games (besides, games like Manhunt or God of War got M rantings despite excessive violence) but this is effectively preventing any major publisher from making g
          • There are plenty of people willing to boycott Walmart. It is usually those people who have the conviction to stand up for what they believe. Walmart will do what ever it takes to insure it doesn't piss-off what it considers as it's customer base. If a significantly sized group of this base reacts to something, like say foul language in a CD, then Walmart decides not to sell that cd. In return, the artist, record company, or some other party with a financial involvement/interest will changes things so as
  • Geez... (Score:2, Funny)

    by Havenwar (867124)
    obsession is never good, no matter what religion. Especially when the obsession is all about how other people should be allowed to live their lives.

    No, if these people are examples of God's finest... sign me up for a trip to hell.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    I'm more interested in the MILFs. For every prudish NIMF in the world there are at least two hot MILFs that are just begging for it.
  • My grade 1 teacher, I should have used that one on you!

    "Oh yeah? Well I give your report card an F!!! Put that in your pipe and smoke it!"
  • by g051051 (71145) *
    This has been covered before (from a different source): http://games.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=05/11/30/ 1742213&tid=10&tid=219 [slashdot.org]
  • Maybe I've been missing it, but it's a rather ironic poor choice of title to choose to represent themselves isn't it?

    GrpA
  • I think a lot of those games, Like Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, should have an AO rating attached to them. Who cares about whether or not this limits their shelf potential, some of these games go over the edge when they condone killing cops and prostitution.

    Right or wrong is not the issue, what is the issue is that certain content should be kept out of reach of minors. You wouldn't put a porn video right next to Barney's Big Adventure on the shelf just to satisfy the porn distributor's "right" to exist

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