U.S. Senator Introduces Video Game Rating Legislation

July 24, 2008 -

Sen. Roger Wicker (R-MS) yesterday introduced a bill in the United States Senate which would:

...prohibit the distribution or sale of video games that do not have age-based content rating labels [and]  prohibit the sale or rental of video games with adult content ratings to minors...

The full text of the bill, S.3315 is not yet available on the Senate's legislative website. Thus far the bill has no co-sponsers. The measure has been referred to the Senate's Committe on Commerce, Science, and Transportation.

GamePolitics has received unconfirmed word that Wicker's bill is the Senate version of the Video Games Rating Enforcement Act introduced in the House by Reps. Jim Matheson (D-UT) and Lee Terry (R-KS) earlier this year.

Wicker, a longtime Congressman, was appointed to his Senate seat by Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour on New Year's Eve to fill the vacancy created by the retirement of Sen. Trent Lott. Perhaps not surprisingly, Wicker is running for election. He must face Mississippi voters in November in a special election to fill out the rest of Trent Lott's term.


Comments

Re: U.S. Senator Introduces Video Game Rating Legislation

You're right, I completely missed that.  This makes this even worse.  Dear god...the video game industry needs to really band together and combat this immediately...

Re: U.S. Senator Introduces Video Game Rating Legislation

Yeah, but they look very busy screwing up the E3...

The cynical side of videogames (spanish only): http://thelostlevel.blogspot.com/ My DeviantArt Page (aka DeviantCensorship): http://www.darkknightstrikes.deviantart.com/

Re: U.S. Senator Introduces Video Game Rating Legislation

Hey, if this gets passed, I think the ESA, ECA, EVERYBODY will put everything on hold and take this to the supreme court. They've tried it with movies, right? And it was shown that the MPAA is doing a good enough job. Surely the same will be done with this. I bet there will be other rights groups besides game-related ones that'll want this shut down, and it WILL be shut down. If it isn't...well....maybe we can get all the gamers (or really, anyone that CARES about their rights) to move to a certain area and secede from the U.S.

Re: U.S. Senator Introduces Video Game Rating Legislation

All together now: Proposing unconstitutional laws should be an impeachable offense.

 

Re: U.S. Senator Introduces Video Game Rating Legislation

Screw that.

Make it treason. And no, I'm not saying it tongue in cheek.

 

 

Re: U.S. Senator Introduces Video Game Rating Legislation

Ah but no law in unconstitutional until declared so by an appropriate court.

The courts do not issue "advisory opinions" so there is no way to tell if a law in unconstitutional until it is signed into law, enforced, and challenged.  Even though this law APPEARS unconstitutional, something as small as a single word change could convince the right judge (or justices as the case may be) that it is distinguished from a previous, invalid law.

Plus, members of Congress are protected by the Constitutional "Speech and debate" clause.  Actions and words stated on the floor cannot be used as the basis of private suits or impeachment.

 

Re: U.S. Senator Introduces Video Game Rating Legislation

You're right, of course.

I intended my comment as a tongue-in-cheek statement, but I do think it's a shame that congresscriters can get away with this sort of thing. People such as these have no respect for the Bill of Rights. They make laws restricting freeedom of speech, some because they're shopping for votes, others because they honestly wish to prohibit certain kinds of speech and will do their best to draft their laws in such a way that it accomplishes their goals of censorship without technically being found unconstitutional.

Re: U.S. Senator Introduces Video Game Rating Legislation

They should just summarily lose their jobs when they suggest blatantly illegal laws.

If I proposed a design change at work that was clearly illegal, I'd lose my job. If I tried to push my illegal design change through, I'd lose my job and my professional license, and probably my freedom.

Why are lawmakers held to a lesser standard than engineers?

Re: U.S. Senator Introduces Video Game Rating Legislation

THis is the type of cascade that the NY game law can lead to, if it isn't already.

 
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Andrew EisenYou have to try to purchase something first. Pick a game, hit purchase and if your wallet doesn't have enough to cover it, you'll be given an option to "add exact funds" or something like that.09/23/2014 - 2:05pm
MonteI have seen no option for that on my 3DS; anytime i want to add funds it only gives me the option to add in denominations of $10, 20, 50 or 10009/23/2014 - 2:03pm
IanCWhat Andrew Wilson said. PSN is the same when you make a purchase over a certain price (£5 in the UK)09/23/2014 - 2:02pm
Andrew EisenNeither eShop charges sales tax either. At least in California.09/23/2014 - 2:00pm
Andrew EisenBoth Wii U and 3DS eShops allow you to add funds in the exact amount of whatever's in your shopping cart. If your game is $39.99, you can add exactly $39.99.09/23/2014 - 1:57pm
Infophile@Matthew Wilson: As I understand it, any regulations to force tax online would also set up an easy database for these stores to use, minimizing overhead.09/23/2014 - 1:30pm
MonteReally, the eshop just does next to nothing to make buying digitally advantagous for the customer. Its nice to have the game on my 3DS, but i can get more for less buying a physical copy at retail. And that's not even counting buying used09/23/2014 - 1:18pm
MonteIanC, The Eshop wallet system only lets you add funds in set denominations and the tax makes sure you no longer have round numbers so you ALWAYS loose money. A $39.99 game for instance requires you to add $50 instead of just $4009/23/2014 - 1:13pm
Matthew Wilsonbut thats just it those sites, even the small ones, sell all over the country.09/23/2014 - 11:12am
Neenekoeither that or it would follow the car model of today. big ticket items are taxed according to your residence, not where you buy them.09/23/2014 - 11:07am
NeenekoI doubt it would be the retailer that handles the tax in the first place. If it goes through it would probably be folded in as a service on the processor end or via 'turbotax' style applications.09/23/2014 - 11:05am
Matthew Wilsonsimple there are over 10k tax areas in the us for sales tax. it would be impossible for small online retailers to handle that.09/23/2014 - 10:55am
IanCWhats wrong with charging tax in an online shop?09/23/2014 - 10:47am
E. Zachary KnightI don't see why it would be that difficult to maintain one. Especially for a news outlet with multiple people on the payroll.09/23/2014 - 9:37am
Matthew Wilsonthey can, but will they? more inportantly will the traditional sites be willing to do the extra work to maintain the list?09/23/2014 - 9:02am
E. Zachary KnightSo how will it reduce the power of the traditional games press? They can create curated stores too.09/23/2014 - 8:39am
Matthew WilsonI think its a good thing, but it does mean traditional games press will have less power than ever before. To be fair most of the gaming press were never big on pc gaming anyways.09/23/2014 - 8:33am
E. Zachary KnightMatthew, is that a bad or good thing?09/23/2014 - 7:43am
MechaTama31When you say "youtuber", I picture some sort of customizable potato...09/22/2014 - 10:48pm
Matthew Wilsonthis change will only give youtubers more power.09/22/2014 - 9:54pm
 

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