Friday, 4 May 2012

[News] Keith Vaz

A little while a go I wrote a piece about an MP called Keith Vaz.

The same MP is back in the news, and yet again it concerns videogames. This time his early motion (of which he has submitted many), centres around the case of Anders Breivik and Call of Duty.

Anders Breivik was of course the Norwegian responsible for the tragic events in Norway where 69 people were shot and killed. He accepts that he did kill those in question, but did so to defend Norway from multiculturalism.

During his trial he spoke about using Call of Duty to prepare for his attack. Keith Vaz has used this statement to launch his campaign to change the way in which videogames are rated. He feels the current PEGI (Pan European Game Information) system doesn't put across the level of violence involved in games such as the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare titles.

In his Early Day Motion statement he says:

"...concerned that PEGI as a classification system can only provide an age-rating and not restrict ultra-violent content; recognizes that in an era of ever-more sophisticated and realistic game-play more robust precautions must be taken before video games are published; and calls on the Government to provide for closer scrutiny of aggressive first-person shooter video games."

The last couple of Call of Duty titles, including the most recent edition have been rated 18. Alongside the age rating they also state that the game involves violence. Sadly, like I did back when I wrote the article mentioned at the top of this one, I still feel that parents/adults need to be more aware of the content involved within these sort of games. The BBFC and PEGI both use the 18 certificate often and within good reason. Retailers in the UK have strict policies when it comes to selling 18 rated games.

Mr Vaz...

"..(and) calls on the Government to provide for closer scrutiny of aggressive first-person shooter video games."

Does he want it to be clearer on the box when describing the content? Perhaps he wants to increase 18 rated titles to 21? He surely can't mean that realistic games based on scenarios such as as the World Wars should be prohibited?

The film industry has (in some cases) portrayed war in more graphical detail than most videogames based on the same subject, so perhaps he should raise an Early Day motion towards them as well?

You can read the motion here.

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