Clinton, Lieberman Praise ESRB on Capitol Hill

Politics, as they say, makes strange bedfellows.

This afternoon Senators Hillary Clinton (D-NY) and Joe Lieberman (I-CT) joined with ESRB president Patricia Vance to praise the video game industry’s rating system.

It was just over a year ago that Sen. Clinton ripped the game biz over the Hot Coffee scandal. Both senators were on hand during the release of the National Institute on Media and the Family’s 2005 Annual Video Game Report Card, which gave the industry an F for ratings accuracy. The ESRB did much better in the 2006 report card, earning B’s. Sen. Clinton said today:

We all share in the responsibility of making sure our children play age-appropriate video games, and I’m pleased that the ESRB and retailers are working together to educate parents about the video game ratings and make sure they are enforced. As we enter the holiday shopping season, it is important that parents have the information they need to make informed choices that are right for their families.

Sen. Lieberman echoed those remarks, saying:

I continue to be concerned about the impact on minors of playing violent video games intended for older players.  Thus, I am very pleased that the ESRB and the retailers are taking these positive steps to reach out to parents to educate them about the rating system.  I have long said that the ESRB ratings are the most comprehensive in the media industry…

The joint press conference celebrates a new public service ad campaign designed to educate parents about rating as the holiday shopping season gets into full swing. The ads will run on 800 stations nationwide. 

The ESRB’s Vance added:

We’re excited to have the support of Senators Clinton and Lieberman, Best Buy and GameStop in this significant initiative to help ensure that parents choose appropriate games for their children.

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