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Censorship Entertainment Games

Banned Games Find Ways To Bypass Authority 58

Posted by Zonk
from the can't-keep-a-gamer-down dept.
Stony Stevenson writes "PC World reports that digital downloads and online distribution is making the regulation of banned computer games impossible. Running with Scissors has employed a new sales channel that allows its controversial Postal games to be downloaded direct to consumers' PCs. This has created a grey area between content regulators and classification enforcers that allows end users to receive banned content unchecked. From the article: 'The Australian Communications and Media Authority hotline manager of content assessment, Mike Barnard conceded that preventing distribution was not conclusive and the only foolproof method of stopping people downloading banned content was if they chose not to.'"
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Banned Games Find Ways To Bypass Authority

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  • In other news... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by PFI_Optix (936301) on Monday February 13, 2006 @11:49AM (#14706487) Journal
    Prohibition of alcohol and illicit drugs fails miserably.
  • by illtron (722358) on Monday February 13, 2006 @11:54AM (#14706568) Homepage Journal
    Governments need to get out of the business of telling people what content is good for them. They can't possibly hope to stop it, so why try? I know what I find offensive, and I won't waste my time on stuff that offends my tastes. When I have kids someday, I hope to teach them some sense of decency and the difference between right and wrong. I don't think there's any actual danger of kids going postal themselves just because they played a violent video game. Raise your kids right and it'll never be an issue, no matter what kind of video games they play.
  • choice (Score:4, Insightful)

    by sepharious (900148) on Monday February 13, 2006 @12:01PM (#14706689) Homepage
    "Mike Barnard conceded that preventing distribution was not conclusive and the only foolproof method of stopping people downloading banned content was if they *CHOSE* not to." (emphasis mine) And that is exactly as it should be. People should be responsible for the content they consume and for their children's consumption. If you can't control what your children play then perhaps you should have kept your legs closed. Down with the Nanny State!
  • Re:Not true... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by 2008 (900939) on Monday February 13, 2006 @12:10PM (#14706823) Journal
    You can't stop production either. You could prevent a big company from producing certain types of games, but you can't stop fan-made content which can add violence/sex/drugs/atheism/whatever. And you can't stop companies in another country from producing the games either, you can prevent bulk imports but not file trading or people posting copies.
  • by MasterOfMagic (151058) on Monday February 13, 2006 @12:11PM (#14706833) Journal
    Perhaps instead of banning video games, governments should be focused on educating people between the differences between right and wrong and fantasy and reality. There are studies that show people who don't know the difference between right and wrong and people that don't know the difference between fantasy and reality can be influenced to violent behavior by violent video games. What most of these studies fail to mention is the numbers of people who have been affected by other media outlets and how that compares to video games. In the past, Dungeons & Dragons, Saturday Cartoons, Comic Books, Movies, Heavy Metal Music, and Dime Store Novels were all thought to have the same influence. So the question becomes, is the problem with the media or the people consuming the media?

    Or perhaps if people knew the difference between fantasy and reality, fewer people would go see movies and watch television and begin to wake from their unrealistic dreams?
  • Re:Not true... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by RexRhino (769423) on Monday February 13, 2006 @12:28PM (#14707072)
    It still won't work. The U.S. spent billions, if not trillions by now, trying to stop the flow of illegal drugs into the United States. They have a whole police/military machine trying to keep the stuff out. They have a million people in prison for selling or using the stuff. And it doesn't seem to have any effect. (In fact, the drug laws probably perpetuate the drug trade. The U.S. government is like the OPEC of drugs... they are just effective enough to limit the drugs such as they become very profitable to smuggle.

    Now, information is way easier to smuggle and hide than illicit substances. Especially in the age of the Internet. Expect any attemps to ban games to be as effective as the "War on Drugs".
  • by 91degrees (207121) on Monday February 13, 2006 @01:20PM (#14707796) Journal
    By allowing customers to claim any losses back from their credit card company, or something like that, making it totally unprofitable for the online casinos? You just need to do more of this sort of thing. They need to come up with laws that will allow people access to the software but not require them to pay for it, and let the publishers censor themsleves.

    Or, even better - stop nannying their citizens.
  • by valintin (30311) on Monday February 13, 2006 @02:53PM (#14709065)
    Not if you're a distiller, dealer or game publisher.
  • by Some_Llama (763766) on Monday February 13, 2006 @04:55PM (#14710387) Homepage Journal
    I think you are confusing the policing of morality with consquences for actions, the "morals" you have defined, "rape, murder, unprovoked assault, and so forth" effect other people and should have consqeuences as such, since our constitution attempts to defend it's populace against things that would interfere with their life liberty and pursuit of happiness.

    What the government should not do is attempt to define FOR ME what is right and wrong, I should decide that for myself and my children (and when they are grown they can decide for themselves), the only time the government should be involved is when my actions affect another person's above stated rights granted under the constituion... I live in the USA and expect these rights...

Single tasking: Just Say No.