Games - Government Publications - Monographs
Articles - Magazine Articles - Newspaper
Wide Web - Unpublished
Unlike the magazine articles
detailed above, the newspaper articles mentioned here tend to hold a variety
of views on computer games censorship. Such articles are often sensationalist
and could well be the cause of so much of the alleged community concern
regarding computer games. Those that hold clear anti-censorship positions
are often written by knowledgeable specialist computer journalists.
These articles are particularly useful for answering issues such as the
violence and/or degradation accusations, the
exact nature of computer games and their players,
and to identify the stakeholders in the games
censorship debate in this country.
D. (1993, May 29). Senator urges ban on violent computer play. Courier
Mail, p. 9.
One of the first computer
games regulation articles to appear in any Australian publication, it reports
on the beginning of Senator Margaret Reynolds' politically influential
crusade to restrict the sale of violent and pornographic computer games
such as Night Trap. Even at
this early stage, her actions were opposed as being unwarranted zealotry
by deputy Chief Censor David Haines.
J. (2000, April 5). Computer guru says violence no game.
An extensive study conducted
by a US psychologist found that computer games, particularly because of
their interactive nature, do promote violence and aggression in the real
world, particularly by addicted teenaged boys. Furthermore, it was
found that eighty percent of games portrayed graphic violence and twenty
percent depicted violence against women.
This study's violence promotion findings are not supported by the vast
bulk of other literature on this topic which tends to point to either inconclusive
or opposite results.
S. (2001, June 5). Games vendors start censorship campaign.
The association that represents
computer and video games distributors in this country, the Australian Video
and Software Distributors Association, launched an information campaign
to explain to parents the existence and workings of the Federal
Government's games classification system. To calm community concerns,
emphasis is placed on the fact that violent games are appropriately regulated
through the OFLC's current guidelines. Accusations that violence
in games leads to violence in real life are firmly rejected.
K. (2000, May 16). Easy distinction between a game and reality.
Australian, p. 15.
An experienced computer issues
journalist asserts that computer games players can readily comprehend the
considerable difference that exists between the often violent fantasy worlds
of computer games and the real world. One of the main reasons for
this is that games present an environment of exaggerated unreality in the
aim of furthering their often overblown storylines. According to
this journalist, all hobbies must be enjoyed in moderation and overindulgence
in video games should be seen as no more or less worrying than overindulgence
in stamp collecting.
L. (2001, April 24). Classics to help EA go beyond shooters.
- the Cutting Edge, p. 8.
Electronic Arts, a leading
computer games company based in the USA, is considering turning to classic
works of European literature such as Homer's Odyssey and Shakespeare's
in order to learn how to introduce strong plot and character elements into
their normally action packed games which are quite weak in these elements.
In this way, violence will have a detailed context with realistic consequences
and they will be able to sell more of their products to older gamers and
women who tend to reject the mindless violence in most current titles owing
to boredom issues.
S. (1996, October 19-20). Game hunting. Weekend Australian - Syte,
While discussing the need
for an Australian games ratings system that recognises that adults play
computer games, the author of this article quotes the findings of a local
computer games distributor, Psygnosis, that up to seventy-five percent
of computer games players in this country are over the age of eighteen.
Emphasis is placed on the fact that games are far from just a childish
preoccupation as is commonly assumed by most pro-censorship members of
S. (2001, May 15). Myst lifts to show games girls play. The Australian
- the Cutting Edge, p. 3.
Far from being excluded or
marginalised by the computer games industry, women, who number just under
half of adult gamers and prefer games with much more plot and character
than their male counterparts, are having their specific needs catered for
with games such as the Myst series. Further female appeal
lies in the way in which it can be played cooperatively with friends rather
than in the competitive situations sound so often in male dominated violent
P. (1999, December 4-5). I was a virtual child. The Australian Magazine,
Generation gaps that have
existed in all periods throughout human history are currently responsible
for so much of the furore over controversial content in computer and video
games. Psychologists and other academics do not all agree with the
scientific evidence that supports the claims that computer games are harmful
to minors. Parents and teachers are best advised to educate children
in media literacy so that they are able to cope with new forms of information
and entertainment using their own critical reasoning to determine what
is useful/harmless and what is not.
M. (1993, November 22). Games children play. Courier Mail, p. 13.
Filled with conflicting opinions
from all sides of the games censorship debate,
this article provides an overview of community opinions at the time when
Australia's games censorship system was being developed. The journalist
presents plot and content summaries of contentious titles that contain
supposedly graphic violent and/or sexual content and quotes a Brisbane
academic who holds the view that games are overly violent and harmful to
children. In contrast, the games distributors, retailers, and players
themselves see little need for any regulation, especially seeing that most
gamers are adults.