As reported by GamePolitics last week, the U.S. 8th Circuit Court affirmed a July, 2006 U.S. District Court ruling that Minnesota’s "fine the buyer" video game violence law is unconstitutional.
Now we’ve gotten our hands on a copy of the three-judge panel’s decision. Download it here (8-page PDF). Here’s a sample:
We accept as a given that the State has a compelling interest in the psychological well-being of its minor citizens. Likewise, we believe that the State’s evidence provides substantial support for its contention that violent video games have a deleterious effect upon the psychological well-being of minors. Nevertheless, in light of the heightened standard of proof that [the precedent-setting] Interactive Digital [decision] says must be applied, we conclude that the evidence falls short of establishing the statistical certainty of causation demanded thereby.
In so holding, we are not as dismissive of that evidence as have been some of the courts that have found similar evidence to be inadequate to establish the causal link between exposure to violent video games and subsequent behavior.
GP: This decision might not have gone so well for the game industry had the 8th Circuit not been faced with a precedent-setting decision in the IDSA vs. St. Louis case.