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Federation News
SUBJECT Different Perspective on the Game DATE 2011-07-14

Recent verdict of U.S. Supreme Court which strikes down the California law that banned the sale or rental of violent video games to under ages has much of implication for countries including Korea having contraction with the regulation on games. Certainly, different countries have different policies and institutions for the game issues. There are many of countries restrict violent games, and there is, also, not for love or money to defend them. However, the noteworthy from the ruling of the Supreme Court is that they admitted the game as a subject to be guaranteed for its constitutional freedom of expression just as movie, play or publications. Also, it defined enforcing new regulation limited only for minors as unconstitutional.
  In the past, under the curse that comics are detrimental for the youth, we let the comics industry die out. At the same time, it turned to be that we closed beforehand the development of other culture industries which would incline with the comics businesses as its basis. The game industry has an infinite potential to provide the basis for other contents industries such as movie or music industries. The intent to protect the youth is quite understandable, but it is still a controversial issue to be thought if it is that evil to such an extent as to infringe our constitutional basic rights or to restrict the industrial basis.
  The Article below is a related article quoted from ‘Financial Times’ published on June 27.

US Supreme Court boost for video game industry
by Chris Nuttall

  The US video game industry has received, with a key ruling in its favor, Supreme Court backing in the debate over whether its violent titles cause teens to act aggressively in real life. Judges of the US’s highest court voted 7 to 2 to strike down as unconstitutional a 2005 California law that banned the sale or rental of violent video games to minors, backing the findings of lower court. Justice Antonin Scalia, delivering the court’s opinion, said psychological studies had not proved that exposure to violence in games caused minors to act aggressively. “Any demonstrated effects are both small and indistinguishable from effects produced by other media,” he said.
  The possible effects on young people of playing violent video games have been argued for years. Incidents such as the 1999 Columbine High School massacre, where the teenage gunmen were avid players of the Doom shooter game, have been cited by pressure    groups concerned that theinteractive nature of video games make them more influential than other media.
  The Entertainment Software Association, which had led opposition to the California law by more than 180 groups, welcomed the decision in a statement. “It is time for elected officials to stop wasting time and public funds seeking unconstitutional restrictions on video games,” said Michael Gallagher, ESA president.
  The Supreme Court justices ruled the law contravened the first amendment of the constitution, protecting free speech. Video games qualified for this protection the same as books, plays and films, said Justice Scalia. California had declined to restrict other media, such as Saturday morning cartoons, once held responsible for influencing real-life violence, raising concerns it was discriminating against video games.
  He also said the state could not claim it was meeting the needs of parents who wanted to restrict their children’s access to violent videos. The industry’s rating system for games already largely accomplished that.
  Common Sense Media, a children’s advocacy group, described the Supreme Court decision as “a disappointing one for parents, educators and all who care about kids”.
  “Millions of kids are not able to judge the impact of ultra-violence on their own. Today the multibillion-dollar video game industry is celebrating the fact that their profits have been protected,” said James Steyer, its chief executive.
  The dissenting judges, Justices Clarence Thomas and Stephen Breyer, interpreted?the?first amendment implications differently. Justice Thomas said the founding fathers would have wanted controls for their children, while Justice Breyer said the first amendment does not disable government from helping parents make the choice of not having their children buy violent video games.

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