New Zealand Censor: Prosecute Parents Who Give Violent Games to Kids

New Zealand’s chief government censor has called for the prosecution of parents who give their children access to violent video games, according to

Bill Hastings (left) hopes that such cases – apparently enabled by Kiwi law – will provide "shock value" to deter other parents from making similar choices in regard to their children’s media consumption:

They might think the offence is silly, but it ain’t… That’s what the law says, but… you’re not going to have police officers in every bedroom… There would certainly be some shock value to prosecuting a parent who gives their under-18 child access to a restricted game. It would send out a message that the enforcement agency means business.

I think the word ‘game’ can mislead people for sure. It’s not checkers. For the first time in history, kids are more savvy with technology than parents… parents need to get up to speed on the digital divide. They need to look at what their kids are playing and doing…


It should be the pleasure in being able to sleep at night knowing that you have done the right thing by your kids. That should be the motivating factor.

Under the law, parents could be fined up to NZ$10,000 or imprisoned for three months.

GP: But if the parents are in jail, who will monitor the kids then?

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  1. Michael Chandra says:

    Are those the Australian ratings? =P Keep in mind this law would be tied to NZ ratings, which would be either the Australia ratings or, if this guy gets what he wants, worse, because any T-game with a good amount of violence might become 18+. I perfectly see him possible to push for having a rating board of old idiots that cry havoc at every game with gore and push them to 18+.

  2. Wolvenmoon says:

    Most of the games with positive results, especially real time strategy games and many tactical games are rated "T". The Command and conquer series, the entire total war series, the age of empires series, rise of nations, how many more do I need?

    First person shooters? There are some T rated ones, and most of the M rated ones I play have no tactical side to them. Crysis maybe.

    Now I’m not saying that this law is right-it’s ridiculous and ‘making an example’ of someone is reminiscent of a government that rules by fear-but…wow, I keep trying to think of a game that’s "M" rated and would have some sort of benefit for a kid to play, and I’m drawing a blank. Portal? No, that’s T…maybe counter-strike (teamwork), but CS is nowhere near fallout 3, left 4 dead, or other M rated games I can think of as far as violent content goes. More reasoning for a new rating wedged between "T" and "M".

    Edit: got off topic there..this law is BS, the sentiment behind it is 60% legitimate and 40% BS. The BS comes in fining the parents, the legitimate part is preventing minors from playing them..but ONLY if it’s for M rated games. Also, someone PLEASE come up with a well known game that’s "M" rated and has some sort of measurable cognitive benefit.

  3. Michael Chandra says:

    I guess he MIGHT be talking about how some of the games don’t get an original NZ rating, but the games still are rated by Australia, his neighbours which are quite strict themselves. As such, the entire not-always-rated part is completely irrelevant I guess.

  4. ConstantNeophyte says:

    Yeah, I’m a kiwi and I have no fucking idea what he’s on about. We do have our own rating system, but generally the games we get have the Aussie ratings on them. So unless they should be R18 or they disagree with the Aussies about content, they just leave them as the Aussies rated them.

    At least, that’s what I think happens.

    -ConstantNeophyte: always the newb, ALWAYS.

  5. SS says:

    yep true.

    I also would like to add that this thread makes M-rated games all look like irrational gorefests.

    In fact a parent might want their kid to play certain games like Bioshock or the Metal Gear Solid series and have them think about the ideas present in the games.

    I certainly know that Bioshock made me think about Ayn Rand and her philosophy.

    Even GTA IV has plenty has witty commentary on society.

  6. Alex says:

    "Well, the thing is, those kids aren’t really going to suffer if they have to wait a few years to play any particular game"

    You’re not going to suffer if you get banned from this web site, so hey, Dennis should ban you!

    No, that’s not a serious statement that you should be banned from this web site. I said that to illustrate a point. "Well, they’re not going to suffer if this happens" is not, by itself, a valid argument in favor of ANYTHING, and since you completely failed to answer the concerns posted by the person you’re replying to I can only guess that you don’t have any other arguments.

    Nobody’s saying that just because a child is capable of handling GTA, they should have a copy in their X-box right now. It’s the principle of the thing. I didn’t play many violent games at all growing up, but my mother bought me a copy of a Star Wars third-person shooter game when I was 6. The game was rated T. Under this guy’s logic (no, I know it’s not necessarily applicable to ALL age ratings, but it’s the same kind of logic), my mother should be prosecuted and see jail time or be fined $10,000 for letting me play a Star Wars game.

    How does that NOT sound totally ridiculous?

    I’m not under the affluence of incohol as some thinkle peep I am. I’m not half as thunk as you might drink. I fool so feelish I don’t know who is me, and the drunker I stand here, the longer I get.

  7. GRIZZAM PRIME says:

    How does the play or viewing of violent entertainment suggest condonement of real violence? It’s also worth noting that the circumstances of the violence in many popular games and movies is self defence, or heroism, or protecting humanity, or whatever, and most kids can tell Lex is the bad guy and Superman is the good guy, despite their frequent use of violence.

    (I will concede that "But MOOOM, all the other kids…" is a weak arguement)

  8. Michael Chandra says:

    Here, let me quote:

    Although all films and DVDs must be rated, electronic games such as those played on PlayStation or Xbox consoles do not need to go through the classification process unless they have objectionable material, he said.

    Mr Hastings said he intended to ask the Internal Affairs Ministry to repeal parts of the Films, Videos and Publications Classification Act, drafted in 1993, so that all video games receive classification.

  9. Michael Chandra says:

    "just like they wouldn’t suffer if they didn’t even play any games"

    But from playing games there can be positive consequences, as you mention with yourself as example. Tactical thinking, out of the box, morale decisions and their consequences, planning ahead, training reaction time, etc.

    This law, which apparently already exists, isn’t just going to be tossed at 12-years playing GTA. Believe me, I disagree with that, I got a nephew that shows potential negative aspects of today’s gangsta bling-bling culture, and the GTA games when his age barely was two digits didn’t really help. We tried to help a bit there.
    This law can also be used against teenagers, that are just a few months away from the required age and as such would already be allowed to play it in the USA. Likely? No, less chance the judge goes ahead and gives an actual punishment, so not as good for a shock case. But it’s possible, and it’s part of the behaviour a shock case for a 14-year old would cause, people holding off for a few more months, when the game isn’t that popular anymore and most online players are experienced jackasses who like messing up newbies.

  10. Michael Chandra says:

    Aside from not giving off the forbidden fruit signal, if done in due consideration it symbols an amount of trust in the teenager, and the respect for their desire for quick games, rather than games that can take hours and hours for a mission or quest. Not that I’d want a kid who only plays Shooters, I’d make sure to encourage some offline RPGs as well.

    Why letting someone play or watch a violent movie means telling them violence is okay, is beyond me. Just have to have the talk once or twice, give off a signal. Unfortunately mature parents that actually do spend time on parenting, only to after that make the decision, are punished if this law is used.

    I’d say the whole "if they bully you or beat you up, just fight back" thing in my youth was much more a part of my violent tendencies which took years to tone down, than the games I didn’t start with until that actually already was going down. GTA 1 was fun! Stress-relievers and being able to ignore the existing world and its issues is quite nice.

  11. Rohin says:

    I’m a kiwi. Where does he say we don’t have ratings?

    We at least have an R18 one, unlike the Aussies =P

  12. Rohin says:

    What are you talking about?

    Almost every country in the world has a group that fills this role. They look at media and rate it according to local law. Porn gets R18, Kids stuff gets G, etc.

    PS. I’m a kiwi.

  13. gamadaya says:

    I don’t think this is right. Sure, they aren’t going to suffer if they wait a few years, just like they wouldn’t suffer if they didn’t even play any games, but just because it wouldn’t hurt anyone (and I think it would), doesn’t mean that it should be a law. I grew up watching rated R movies and playing M rated games all the time, and I think I’m a more creative and mature person because of it. If you specifically deprive a kid of something, they are only going to want it more, and probably over-indulge in it when they finally are allowed to have it. Besides, what good would this law do other than deprive a lot of people of a lot of fun just because some people think it’s "inappropriate"?


    Internet troll > internet paladin

  14. Hannah says:

    Er… that violence is ok and that "But mooooom! All the other kids are playing it!" is a valid argument?

  15. GRIZZAM PRIME says:

    So what message are they sending if they purchase a popular but violent game for their kids to play? 

  16. Wolvenmoon says:

    What world are you off in? This is the same world that spawned jack thompson, that french mother that let her kid take the fall for hurting her daughter…you read gamepolitics, you have enough game examples.

    This is the same world that some parents let their children smoke, drink, screw, shoot, et cetera. The ideal thing would be if parents were smart enough to not let their kids do these things. The next best ideal would be if our police force had the time to spare on these issues.

    Anyway, we’re a step ahead of ourselves here. The ratings system isn’t objective and quantitative enough to start writing laws off of. Even if one got passed, eventually in court someone would ask if this material did constitute a threat to our children, and it’d be found that not all games rated for violence/’harmful’ material did.

    Regardless, there is a way to judge the (random number out of my ass) 10,000+ game titles a year as containing or not containing highly violent, potentially dangerous material. There is no way to make sure parents are educating their kids correctly, and starting a taxpayer funded government campaign about it would just waste money and get us nowhere.

  17. Hannah says:

    Well, the thing is, those kids aren’t really going to suffer if they have to wait a few years to play any particular game, and while I certainly don’t think violent games will make anyone violent, a parent’s positive attitude toward such violence — or worse, complete lack of interest — might.  I think it’s best to err on the side of caution and encourage parents to think about what kind of a message they’re sending if they bring home the latest and greatest in gory first person shooters and let their 15-year-old kid play it, especially if part of their reasoning is the popularity of the game.

    If you’re looking for good, (relatively) non-violent games to give a child or young teen, I would suggest strategy games like Civilization, Tropico, Sim City, or The Sims.  If you’re exclusively looking for console games, pretty much anything by Nintendo is excellent, and there are plenty of T-rated games with bloodless violence, many of which have been very popular over the past few years.  The Battlefield series immediately comes to mind.

    Too many people seem to have this idea that if little Johnny can’t play GTA right now, he’ll be stuck playing Barbie Horse Adventure and will be an outcast for the rest of his life.  This is simply not true.  A parent’s job is to find high-quality, age-appropriate entertainment, and it’s very easy to do this within the rating system… even if Johnny is a bit mature for his age.

  18. Michael Chandra says:

    If similar ratings are 17+ in some countries and 18+ in others, why shouldn’t a parent have the right to let their 17-year old, or 16-year old for that matter, play those games if the education has been proper? Or are we simply forbidding the most popular games of entire genres?

  19. Hannah says:

    I think the suggested punishment is way too harsh, but I wouldn’t be entirely opposed giving parents at least a slap on the wrist for exposing their children to clearly-labelled adult material.  Little Johnny is perfectly capable of waiting a few years to play the latest shoot-em-up, even if he is able to handle it before he turns 18.  Given that the vast majority of games — many of them excellent and mature in theme if not in content — are suitable for all ages, it’s not like any child will be left with nothing to play.

  20. Wolvenmoon says:

    Or you could, ya know, require people enter their age in the games with no warning or anything, let people make profiles for a couple of years, then bam-fine everyone that’s <18 and registered. Something like 150 dollars a game.

    What a ridiculous, unenforceable idea. Now if it were fining the parents of a kid that bought a violent video game at a store, then it’d be better. That all depends though on if in NZ it’s illegal to give kids violent media.

    Regardless this law will have no effect other than to waste NZ taxpayer money and worry parents unneccasarily. How’s about doing something like requiring games to have parental controls and gore/violence lockouts when the game can have them?

    I hate to point to these games so often, but unreal tournament can have all cursing and blood turned off, and crysis can have the blood turned off. Many other games (fallout 3) can have most of the gristly stuff disabled without drastically changing gameplay other than when it’s violence for violence’s sake (Gore bags could be made plastic/not see through, the exploding rats could be omitted…or spontaneously combust).

    Edit : I’m meaning change it to opt-in gore with the option of a parental password, to clarify.

    Again, this won’t do anything to prevent a tech savvy kid from getting at the violent content, but if it makes them feel better, then go for it. At least they’ll be enabling another degree of customizeability to the games, so it wouldn’t be a total waste.

  21. Doomsong says:

    Did he happen to follow up this purely bad idea with the phrase "New Zealand Uber Alles"?

    "Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety" – Benjamin Franklin

  22. Untouchable says:

    I believe it was Canada for that. Wouldn’t be surprised if Japan also had the same kinda thing going on.

  23. Michael Chandra says:

    So what’s this whining about things not having a rating? o_o He’s weird. Could someone from NZ explain?

  24. Untouchable says:

    They pretty much follow the Australian OFLC in ratings but they have an R18+ rating. Still, bizarre that he seemingly refuses to note that there is a pretty big rating on the box.



  25. Father Time says:

    Agreed, to say that no one under age X will be able to handle a certain game is rediculous.

    Yes you should think twice before giving GTA to someone underage but it should not be considered a criminal act.


    Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it’s over they have the same positions they started in.

  26. CyberSkull says:

    This is incredibly stupid. Parents should be the judge of what their children consume, not the government. 

  27. MasterAssassin says:

    @ Ex Libris


    SOME comments are misinformed? Try his entire statement! This man is completely deranged. He wants to prosecute parents for making descions on what is suitable for their kids! New Zealand needs to take a hard look at their rating system and reform it. This is scary because OTHER countries are likely to follow suit and no nobody is saying that legally enforced rating systems are road to fascism. Pretty much every country that has one merely bars minors from purchasing the games/movies without a parent present. They DO NOT however bar parents from buying one of these games for thier kids. This man wants to push his own moral beliefs on every single person in the country. I dare you to tell me that isn’t a form of fascism. I advise the people of NZ to speak out against this and demand reforms in their rating system.

  28. Danath says:

    Parents if they understand the rating system should be allowed to give their kids any games they want… yes even M rated games to people under 18, if the parent is aware and believe their child is mature enough to handle the content, that is their privilige, not the governments.

  29. Father Time says:

    "It would send out a message that the enforcement agency means business."

    And that they’re corrupt, power-hungry and generally not thinking in their best interest. Great message.


    Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it’s over they have the same positions they started in.

  30. gamadaya says:

    Boy, if I just saw this guy’s picture,I would never think he’d be some crazy government censor. I’d peg him as more of the murderer/serial rapist type.


    Internet troll > internet paladin

  31. Larington says:

    "For the first time in history, kids are more savvy with technology than parents…"

    Heh, I remember a time when a comedians favourite joke involved a parent asking his/her children to program the VCR for them. That was two generations of video technology ago.

  32. Neeneko says:

    I think the really nasty bit is being overlooked here.

    We have a case of a law that is essentially never applied, and he is looking for a ‘shock’ case… some random person who will have the book thrown at them so everyone else gets in line.

    While I know it happens, it strikes me as a really sick thing to do, and sicker to be proud of it.  

  33. ExLibris says:

    While I don’t agree with all of Bill Hastings’ comments and feel that some of them are ill-informed, I find the fact that the his comments have been taken as an indictment of the entire New Zealand governmental and legal system as being even more ill-informed.

    Yes, like a lot of countries that aren’t the US we have a legally binding rating system for many forms of media (although as you can probably gather, the law isn’t enforced all that much). Yes, the Office of Film and Literature Classification could probably have chosen a better URL than Yes, Bill Hastings could have chosen a better official photo.

    Yet, somehow, despite all of this we actually have less censorship of games than in the US (as an example, I was able to buy the uncensored versions of Fahrenheit and The Witcher with zero problems).

    Legal ratings are not the end of the world, people.

  34. MasterAssassin says:

    "Since parents don’t feel that they should take responsibility anymore and would rather sue if something happens to their kid, then somebody competent needs to step in."

    I’m sorry but this is a terrible argument and is basically the same propaganda that Hitler, Stalin, and every other despot over the years fed their people. Your too stupid to make the right descion so the government is going to do it for you. If a parent lets thier kid play GTA, God of War, or Resident Evil, that’s their descion and no grey haired bureaucrat has a right to tell them not to. And somebody competent? lol. Most bureaucrats are anything but competent. And the stop the crap about how parents suing is the reason we need crap like this. Fascism is not how you fight stupidity. This is a truely scary development because now other countries may follow suit and legislators here will try to push for it as well.

  35. Trails says:

    "For the first time in history, kids are more savvy with technology than parents"

    On which planet?  Kids are generally ahead of the curve.

  36. SimonBob says:

    "For the first time in history?"  When my dad was a kid, they swiped Playboys out of a neighbor’s trash bin.  Kids have always been savvy, it’s just the technology that’s advanced.

    The Mammon Industry

  37. babbleon says:

    Funny how violent video games will be used as an excuse to usher in an era of totalitarianism in New Zealand….

  38. PHX Corp says:

    If a child wants to buy a video game and his parents(and grand parents) are in jail, then there’s somthing is wrong with this picture

    Watching JT on GP is just like watching an episode of Jerry springer only as funny as the fights

  39. deuxhero says:

    Isn’t this one of those crazy countrys that treats drawings of fictional characters as people?

  40. PHX Corp says:

    I think the Censor came back from a frat party and just Looked like that(s***-faced and Drunk)

    Watching JT on GP is just like watching an episode of Jerry springer only as funny as the fights

  41. Michael Chandra says:

    I’m curious about what he means by being rated. Is it like China? Their own rating, the foreign ones that many countries use being irrelevant?

  42. Kincyr says:

    Although all films and DVDs must be rated, electronic games such as those played on PlayStation or Xbox consoles do not need to go through the classification process unless they have objectionable material, he said.

    doesn’t the presence of parental controls on a console indicate that a game needs a rating in order to be played?

    岩「…Where do masochists go when they die?」

  43. Michael Chandra says:

    Laws around video games were "an even stricter regime than alcohol", because if an adult gives a child aged under 18 access to a restricted video game even in their own home they are breaking the law, he said.

    In other words, alcohol isn’t as dangerous as R-18 video games.

    Mr Hastings said studies had shown that repeated exposure to violence and sexual violence had an adverse effect on attitude, and it was important that parents realised some games were created for adults not children.

    What studies then? And how were they received, what criticism did they face? It’s called evidence, you should understand that if you want to work with laws.

  44. PHX Corp says:

    Throwing the parent in Jail, LOL, but seriously it’s wrong, whoever the NZ Censor is, hes an arrogant Arsehole

    NZ is living in a foolocracy, govt by fools, sillyness and unintellegent people

    I think this pretty much calls for an award(see ECA forum post in suggestions section)

    Watching JT on GP is just like watching an episode of Jerry springer only as funny as the fights

  45. JC says:

    I guess the orphans aren’t much of a problem in NZ, and they want to see a boost to that section or something…?

    Yes, it is the parent’s responsibility, but they don’t need to be jailed or fined for allowing their child to play a game.

    He has the right idea on parents needing to be educated, but fining and jail likely won’t help in that manner, it is also at the same time taking away a parent’s right to parent…

  46. Afirejar says:

    "It should be the pleasure in being able to sleep at night knowing that you have done the right thing by your kids. That should be the motivating factor."

    Exactly. That should be the motivating factor, not a fine or the thread of jailtime.

  47. axiomatic says:

    Even though I don’t live in New Zealand. I’m going to expose my kids to whatever "I" think is appropriate for them. If I want to show my kid a violent game, thats MY CHOICE.

    Anyone telling me otherwise can get the fuck out of my house.

    How about you parent your kids and I’ll parent mine. mmmmkay?

  48. Shadow D. Darkman says:


    Mr. Hastings, have you considered the possibility that some kids are actually capable of handling the content that is presented in these games?

    Hell, I discovered pr0|\| in Fourth Grade, and fapping around Seventh Grade. I can handle the presence of nudity in any form of entertainment, and I played Wolfenstein 3D when I was 5, and Doom when I was 6. To this day, I have never had the thought of killing anyone, unless I had good reason.*

    *I have wanted to kill my brother for a couple years now, because he falls just short of abusing his daughter. He yells at her, often hits her (never hard), and expects more from her than what she is capable of (expecting her to answer a math problem in a split second). He also easily gets angry when either our mom, dad, or grandmother (mom’s mother, who lives with us) tries to help get the situation under control. Funny thing is, video games had nothing to do with it at all.


  49. GRIZZAM PRIME says:

    Okay, so…

    1: Kids won’t be harmed if they wait a bit to play violent games, but that’s not a good reason to pass a law that keeps parents from making these decisions themselves. It wouldn’t hurt me to not eat sausage and eggs for breakfast, but that doesn’t mean that I should lose that choice because people who don’t even know me think it’s innapropriate for them and their families.

    2:There is still no evidence to suggest a genuine, real link between violent game play and real life translations of in game violence or nuttyness. Yes, parents should consider their children’s individual psychological traits when thinking of what they expose them to, but every child is different, and a forced standard that takes away the responsibility for making that choice is not a step towards parents tailoring their approach to properly suit their children.

    3:Cycles around the sun do not give a person much maturity (most everyone knows someone that is thoroughly aged, but still as mature as a pissed off little kid). Experiences are what give a person most of their maturity. Obviously as children age, their brains develope to support and process such experiences, but a law like this should certainly not be based on age alone.

    4:Slippery slope is still a fallacy, but something like this does set a precedent and increase the likelyhood of other such intrusions.

    5:Nobody can know a child better than their parents, and very few are more fit to make decisions in their best interest. Yes, there are those who are neglectful and uncaring, but of the hundreds and thousands and millions of parents out there, are they  large enough in number to justify a generalization?

    6:This idea that all violent games are pointless gore fests is garbage. Take games like Metal Gear Solid and Bioshock, games that have very interesting ideas and lessons to teach…

    7:Yes, games, movies, books, and music can have bad influences, but in most stories ridden with violence, there is a prevailing good, and the circumstances of such acts make it appropriate for those events. Part of life is learning to properly sort through negative influences, and understanding that some actions are only appropriate under certain conditions. Some see games as a good venue to teach this.


    The most important lesson I take from this is to avoid looking like a fucking drunk when there are cameras around, because those pictures make you look like an ass.


  50. Krono says:

    Hey, Mr. Hastings, I’ve got a better idea for you than these lame half-measures.

    Have all children taken from their parents at birth, and raised in state institutes until they’re 18.

    I mean, obviously you think the state should be raising children, not their parents, so why not take it to it’s logical conclusion of never letting the parents have any input other than genetic?


  51. Rohin says:

    "And people say Australia is the nanny state! At least these kinds of laws don’t exist in Australia!"


    But then, Australia doesn’t even *have* an R18 rating for games…

  52. iceman654 says:

    And people say Australia is the nanny state! At least these kinds of laws don’t exist in Australia! If a parent wants to exibit an R18+ movie/MA15+ game to a kid in the privacy of their own home, then that is their business. Nothing illegal about it.


    BTW, there are government operated/funded censor offices is the vast majority of Western nations. Canada, New Zealand, Australia, Singapore, Britian etc all back up their rating systems with laws. It’s not unusual.

  53. ConstantNeophyte says:

    Meh, as a Kiwi, this is just pissing into the wind. My parents and most friends parents always knew the content of the games we were buying.

    Hell, my brother has been playing GTA games since he was 12-13, my parents knew all along what he was playing, they also knew that he wasn’t a retard, and therefore, unlikely to mimic any behaviour (for example: using a trainer program to make a tower of tanks 30 high and then blow them up ).

    That being said, they were suprised when, due to Bill’s little hissy fit, they discovered that they can be fined for letting my brother play R18 games. Not that it’s their problem any more since all the games he plays are mine now.

    -ConstantNeophyte: always the newb, ALWAYS.

  54. Firebird says:

    Wow, certainly nothing funny about a kid doing that………….. MWAHAHAHAHAAAAaaa!!!!

    (*Ahem*…. Sorry, I have a bad taste in humor)

    You’ve made a valid point, though. There will always be ways around laws and people taking advantage of em’.

    I never thought of that situation you mentioned, but perhaps there is a way to write a law that that is neither too vaugue (to take advantage of) or too specific (will probably never come in a court case, and is a waste of tax dollars)

    But, I don’t think we’ll come up with a resolution that will please everyone. I was just putting in my 2 cents, and have been too broad (lazy, actually) to think it through…

  55. Lazier Than Thou says:

    I’m not certain giving children a legal way to blackmail their parents is the best course of action.  Assume the following:

    Child wants to do something the parent doesn’t think they should do.  Child learns that there are laws that punish the parents for the deeds of the children.  Child tells parents that if they don’t let him do what he wants, he’s gonna rob a store.

    What now?  Even assuming that the parents tell the authorities that the child has said this to them, you could still be able to charge the parents.  Why?  Because they still failed to raise their child correctly.

    Not only that, but teenagers naturally rebel against their parents.  It’s something they do.  Are we really going to start punishing parents simply for having children that rebel on a criminal scale?

    These types of laws are unmanagable and would only end up making responsible people(you know, the ones that actually pay attention to the laws) think twice about having children.

  56. Vake Xeacons says:

     But by then, it’s too late.

    I think it’s easy to agree; laws aren’t the answer. Yes, educating parents on proper games for their kids is a great idea, but enforcing a law on what the government believes is good parenting takes it all away. Now it doesn’t matter how good the parent is; if they don’t conform to government standards, book’em Draino.

    It’s all about parents getting involved. Most parents now are grown-up gamers, so informed parents are getting more frequent. And those that don’t, need a PROPER program on the GOOD and bad side effects of cybernatography (none of this "games kill" crap).

  57. Firebird says:

    I think he took it a step too much…

    If their upbringing is dependent on how they are raised, then it should be a parent’s fault on how that child acts;

    let’s not go our heads up our asses and try to find the preventative cause, of which this guy tells me, that all of our youth, (I agree many, thought) become disposed to violent behavior because of video games.

    Let’s jail the parent of neglect if their child starts shooting up a school. (If certain standards are met)


    *Collapses on floor*

  58. Vake Xeacons says:

    Yeah, that made me kind of nervous. This guy’s talking about being a good parent, the says the government needs to be the parent for them. And how far would this law go? Letting -18 kids play +18 games? What about other ratings? My daughter’s been playing EC and E rated games for ages 3 and up. She’s 2. Does that make me a bad parent? What if I feel she’s ready for an M-rated game before she hits 18? That’s my choice. I know my daughter best.

  59. Baruch_S says:

    I agree. Something has to be done about these people with their neon watches and ridiculous hair; it’s corrupting the youth.

  60. Bennett Beeny says:

    I call for the prosecution of censors who wear neon watches and sport hairstyles that use gel to make it look like they’ve had a run-in with an enraged squirrel.

    I hope that such cases will provide "shock value" to deter other censors from making similar choices in regard to their appearance.

  61. mdo7 says:


    na, he looks more like Charlie Sheen (maybe older) to me.  It’s my opinion but I can be wrong.

  62. Harry Miste says:

    Anybody notice that the censor looks like Gordon Ramsey?

    Or is it my imagination…

    | XBOX LIVE GamerTag: Harry Miste | Steam ID: Harry Miste | PSN ID: HarryMiste |

  63. starsrift says:

    Like drinking, or driving, isn’t it better for a child to have experience with the material while living with parents who can guide them through stupid thinking and mistakes borne of inexperience? (Driving into another car is bad, not fun; shooting another person is bad, not fun, getting fall-down drunk the night before is stupid, not fun)

    … As opposed to 18 and attending college?

  64. RobertHMayfire says:

    I see this as a slippery slope. If NZ can tell parents not to buy violent games. What is it to stop them from making other laws to tell parents how they should raise their children?

  65. Bennett Beeny says:

    It’s not that ‘parents don’t feel that they should take responsibility anymore’.  It’s that there’s nothing here to be ‘responsible’ about!  Violent videogames are NOT harmful!  Anyone who says otherwise is a liar, because no one has ever shown a link between playing videogames and increased violent behaviour.

  66. chadachada321 says:

    Very subtle godwin’s law right there, but it fits very well.

    When I become a parent, I want to be the one that decides what is appropriate for my child. If I feel that my child is mature enough to play a violent video game, or watch a violent movie, or listen to a certain type of media, I should be entitled to do so.

    The government shouldn’t tell me how to raise my child, especially since using age to determine maturity is a very stupid thing to do. I know many teens that can handle M rated games, and some adults that shouldn’t touch anything higher than E10+.

    -If an apple a day keeps the doctor away….what happens when a doctor eats an apple?-

  67. konrad_arflane says:

    "Parents". That’s a group of people. A BIG group of people. Kinda like "gamers". Or, for that matter, "Jews". It may be that some parents don’t take responsibility for their kids – in fact, that’s pretty much certain to be true. But unless you have some pretty damn concrete statistics to back up your argument, generalizing to the entire group, and/or pretending that the problem is on the rise, is insufficient to argue for government regulation.

    And BTW, who gets to decide who is "competent" to decide how parents should raise their children? Jack Thompson?

  68. SS says:

    No, this is total bullshit.

    These are video games we are talking about, not drugs or alchohol. 

    Think about that.


  69. ZippyDSMlee says:

    Thats fighting stupidity with fascism you know…. which only leads to more stupidity and more rules/restrictions on what people can do….


    Gore,Violence,Sexauilty,Fear,Emotion these are but modes of transportation of story and thought, to take them from society you create a society of children and nannys, since adults are not required.

  70. Bennett Beeny says:

    How can it be ‘a good thing’ overall to institute a law to prevent parents from giving their kids access to something that NO ONE HAS EVER SHOWN TO BE HARMFUL?  What next – are they going to fine parents who give their kids broccoli?  I mean, broccoli is entirely harmless too.

    That, and the issue that taking responsibility away from parents is no way to improve parental responsibility.

  71. koichan says:

    I’m in two minds on this one

    On one hand it tackles the main problem: Parents that give their children whatever they want with complete disregard to whether it’s suitable for them or not.

    On the other hand, it removes the choice of responsible parents to give games they know the child can cope with.

    Overall it may be a good thing, but it’s by no means perfect

  72. PHX Corp says:

    Until JT tried to demonize it in Utah

    Watching JT on GP is just like watching an episode of Jerry springer only as funny as the fights

  73. Wolvenmoon says:

    disappear from popular media*

    It’ll be much like TV and movies. Lots of violent, sexual media-but nothing worth watching.

    There are tons of groups out there against the excessive violence and sexuality in modern movies. The movie industry is just powerful enough to keep it quiet.

  74. Shahab says:

    We only see stupid things like this b/c video games are todays new technology(I realize they’ve been around for a while). In two decades all these asinine attempts at legislation by people who have never even played the games they demonize will dissappear.

  75. ZippyDSMlee says:

    The problem is parents who let their kids see media above their age range is not a problem…

    Its like J walking or begin arrested for drinking on your porch for breaking "public" intoxication laws, these are vague made up laws to generate revenue for the city/government it dose nothing to deal with the real problem because there is no "problem" here other than political arrogance.


    Gore,Violence,Sexauilty,Fear,Emotion these are but modes of transportation of story and thought, to take them from society you create a society of children and nannys, since adults are not required.

  76. SS says:

    Seriously this pisses me off so much.


    If my parents decide I’m old enough to play God of War, or Killzone, or Call of Duty, then that’s there business.  I don’t know what the laws in New Zealand are, but this reeks of total bullshit.

    This is the defination of Nanny State.

  77. TK n Happy Ness says:

    Since parents don’t feel that they should take responsibility anymore and would rather sue if something happens to their kid, then somebody competent needs to step in.

    When Jack Thompson runs his mouth, does anyone really care what he has to say anymore?

  78. Zerodash says:

    Is this extremist basically saying that the NZ government is the one who decides how parents raise their kids?  

  79. Michael Chandra says:

    And parents allowing their children to watch violent movies, tv series and anime, read violent comics and manga, listen to violent music, get off the hook why? And what determines violent anyway? Is Mortal Kombat violent? Pokemon? Smash Bros Brawl?

  80. chadachada321 says:


    I’m a little worried about if you’re being sarcastic or not, lol

    -If an apple a day keeps the doctor away….what happens when a doctor eats an apple?-

  81. TK n Happy Ness says:

    Finally somebody gets the right idea.

    When Jack Thompson runs his mouth, does anyone really care what he has to say anymore?

  82. konrad_arflane says:


    "GP: But if the parents are in jail, who will monitor the kids then?"

    Indeed. Won’t someone please think of the children?

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