Video game group weighs in on the R18 debate

The Interactive Games and Entertainment Association has thrown its hat in the ring on the ongoing debate about whether Australia should have a adult classification for video games, by writing a submission to the Attorney-General’s office.

The iGEA, which represents platform holders, publishers and distributors; has appealed for an R18+ classification to cater to the maturing gaming population and ensure consistent classification amongst other forms of entertainment.

According to Ron Curry, CEO of the iGEA, there is overwhelming support from the Australian population for an adult rating on video games.

“Australia needs an adult rating so adults can play games that are age appropriate for them and parents can make educated choices for their families based on clear, consistent guidelines,” he said.

“With the deadline for submissions closing on February 28, we urge the community to make their voices heard in support of an adult classification.”

Currently Australia is the only Western country in the world without an adult classification for video games, with the current maximum sitting at MA15+. This proves a problem for gamers due to the fact that many games have to be watered down just to get released, and in some cases games get completely banned.

The iGEA collated several results from polls carried out around the country and found that support was overwhelmingly in favour of an amended classification system.

According to the results, 95.5 per cent of respondents in a News Limited poll voted for an R18+ classification and 4 per cent voted against it, a Fairfax poll  also highlighted 97 per cent of respondents thought a R18+ rating should be introduced.

In addition to this, the Channel 7 Sunrise program revealed a 97 per cent support for the rating and a Bond University report was also very one-sided with a score of 91 per cent.

“An R18+ classification is essential to protect consumers whilst providing them with the full information to make educated decisions about their entertainment choices,” said Curry.

If you would like to sign the petition for an R18+ classification for video games, visit http://www.growupaustralia.com or directly at the Attorney-General’s Department at http://www.ag.gov.au/gamesclassification.

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