Parents Television Council Applauds California’s Supreme Court Appeal of Violent Video Game Law

Media watchdog group the Parents Television Council has applauded Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s decision to petition the U.S. Supreme Court to review a federal court decision striking down California’s 2005 violent video game law as unconstitutional.

While video game industry lobbyists and video game consumer group the Entertainment Consumers Association criticized Schwarzenegger’s decision, PTC President Tim Winter (left) praised the California appeal in a press release:

There should be no question that unaccompanied minors should be kept from purchasing adult video games that research has shown can be harmful to them, just like there are reasonable restrictions on other products that can cause them harm. This California law was designed to enforce the video game industry’s own voluntary retail guidelines… Our own research found that video game retailers sell M-rated video games to minors 36% of the time.  Clearly, this law is needed…

The industry doesn’t follow its own rules, and they don’t want a consequence for violating them.  Video game retailers, developers and publishers actually profit when their age restriction policy is ignored.  This creates an inherent and unworkable conflict of interest.

We hope that the U.S. Supreme Court will hear the case and rule in favor of the families and children that this California law was intended to protect.

Winter is referring to the PTC’s 2008 secret shopper survey, which found that underage buyers were successful at purchasing M-rated games 36% of the time. A survey released by the Federal Trade Commission earlier in 2008 found only a 20% success rate for underage buyers.

FULL DISCLOSURE DEPT: The ECA is the parent company of GamePolitics.

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  1. Father Time says:


    But nightwing the issue of whether or not religion is harmful to kids may not be as conclusive and clear cut as you think it is. To you it may be common sense but we’re going to need more than just that to justify squahing first amendment rights to religion. I mean restricting that right shouldn’t be taken lightly and so we’d need objective proof.

    Also look at all the people who practice religion and don’t have messed up kids, what about them, or are we going to base all our laws on what a small criminal, psychotic element might be capable of.



    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.

  2. MonkeyPeaches says:

    They succeded 36% of the time? so this law is needed, that means they failed 64% percent of the time.

  3. Wormdundee says:

     Heh heh, sounds like he’s being listening to Jack Thompson too much. He’s still referring to the line "the video game industry is not following its own rules". The rules of the industry are that you need to have your game rated by the ESRB. Technically, they don’t actually have to go to the ESRB, but no retailers will carry them if they don’t do it. So anyway, that’s the only rule the videogame industry has: Have your game rated by the ESRB, and put the little symbol and descriptor area on the game box. That’s all they have to do.

    Now, you stupid fuck, the RETAILERS are the ones selling to people. As far as I know there are very very few developers/publishers that sell ‘factory direct’. So the videogame industry has no effect on the so-called breaking of this ‘rule’. It’s called the retail industry. And they are breaking their own store policy if they sell to someone outside the age rating, not some fanciful rule that the videogame industry has made. 

    Ask any developer or publisher, I’m sure they have never told a retailer, "Hey, make sure you sell within the age recommendation." It’s a decision that is completely up the retailer. Devs have zero responsibility in this matter.

    I mean, damn, this is basic commonsense knowledge. It’s akin to a furniture manufacturer telling a furniture store, "Hey, don’t let anybody sit on this table, it might get fingerprints on the glass top and smudges, that would totally ruin your display."

  4. Sukasa says:

    I always found it interesting that when reading arguments that all government poliices, etc should be based off christian concepts, etc and that christianity needs the governemnt to protect it.  Is a faith that small/weak, that if the goverment was truly secular, that christianity would fade away?  I find it interesting that christians claim they are being persecuted by the small amount of non-christians in the USA, yet I don’t see anyone being fed to lions, crucified, tortured etc like what happened in the distant past?  My favorite lately is those claiming if christianity becomes weak in the US, that we will become an Islamic country with Sharia law.  I’m sorry, but if Americans rejected christianity, I think we will reject Islam as well.

  5. MasterAssassin says:

    This is the same assclown group that got thier asses sued by the WWF a couple years back, why the video game industry doesn’t do the same is just beyond me. This group also was responsible for the indecency scare on broadcast TV a few years back because of "Nipplegate". This is also the same group that has repeatedly campaigned to get shows taken off by threatening boycotts against thier sponsors even when the shows air at 10pm, have warnings, and wouldn’t appeal to kids(Nip/Tuck, The Shield). And what about movie theaters? I got into R-rated movies all the time when I was 13 and 14 years old and hell most of the time I didn’t even need to sneak in. And with the recent wave of sadistic slasher movies being released why is there no outrage over that?

  6. Sukasa says:

    Aye, if I am to be carded for everything I buy, I just might as well order it online at Amazon and what not, where I am not carded.  Brick and Mortar stores are already having a hard time competing with online stores.  I’m very much surprised that retail associations aren’t screaming in uproar for goverment to leave them alone. 

  7. Spartan says:

    I ‘ll say this simply, the PTC can go fuck itself!


    "The most difficult pain a man can suffer is to have knowledge of much and power over little" – Herodotus

  8. hellfire7885 says:

    True, it’d be along the lines of "If you’re so sure you’re right, then why do you feel so threatened by a different view?"

  9. Shoehorn Oplenty says:

    " that research has shown can be harmful to them,"

    Really? Are they still pushing this bs? I love how the research is never revealed or referenced properly so that people can go and look up the studies and see how flawed they are. Nope, just tag the phrase "research has shown" along to whatever your particular opinion or belief is and it seems you automatically imbue it with some credibility.

    A more accurate statement would be "Researchers have attempted to show these games can be harmful but have never achieved this goal"

  10. nightwng2000 says:

    Works for me.  Remember all the hoopla in various cases, not just video game legislation, where people are stalked, called, emailed, faxed, and so on, death threats and other threats of harm?

    Based on some politicians, individuals, and organizations, even ONE such act is supposed to be further evidence in their favor.

    So, death threats, and other such acts, would further prove my point and would be additional evidence of the clear and present danger that religion poses to society and the mental and physical well-being of children.

    Ever see the original Miracle on 34th Street?

    Judge:  "Put them here on my desk."

    Attorney:  "But your honor…"

    Judge:  "Put them here."

    :: Postal delivery employees come in with bags and bags of mail for Santa Claus and dumps them, hundreds of letters on the Judge’s desk. ::

    They’ll be shooting themselves in the foot… with a bazooka!


    NW2K Software

    Nightwng2000 has also updated his MySpace page: Nightwng2000 is now admin to the group "Parents For Education, Not Legislation" on MySpace as

  11. Kajex says:

    The PTC can shut the fuck up until it’s THEIR money that’s being used up to fund these goddamn ridiculous, unconstitutional laws. THEY aren’t worried that CA is more than $21 billion in the hole.

  12. hellfire7885 says:

    Sadly that would never fly and your mail woudl get so full of death threats you’d be getting them by the bags full >.<

    Yay double standards X3

  13. nightwng2000 says:

    Maybe I should start doing what the PTC and others like them do and truly start petitioning the government to "Protect the Children!" from religious "mental molestation" of children and the harmful effects which have been proven time and time again.  Hey, I can even bring up the recent reports about religious advocated abuses (verbal, mental, physical, and sexual) advocated, covered up, and continued to occur in Ireland and backed by the Vatican!  "Protect the Children!"



    NW2K Software

    Nightwng2000 has also updated his MySpace page: Nightwng2000 is now admin to the group "Parents For Education, Not Legislation" on MySpace as

  14. LegendaryGamer00 says:

    I’m willing to bet they leave their kids in a small white room all day with no windows.



    Making the world a better place… one Headshot at a time…

  15. dutch_gamer says:

    I don’t understand why politicians want such a bill to protect the children when they don’t do anything about cyber bullying. Cyber bullying is something which truly needs to be dealt with because it harms children in the present but can also have a serious impact on their future. And this not only because of the "torment" but also because nowadays universities and businesses do an Internet background check on applications. When they find a bad site about you, even when someone else made it, you are out of luck. And yet, violent video games are a problem? Come on. Not to mention that the governator is a huge hypocrite for trying to appeal to protec the children from violent images, considering him having been in countless violent movies seen by children.

  16. GoodRobotUs says:

    Can’t say I’m surprised, for a group who’s first name is ‘Parents’, they sure are adverse to actually doing any parenting…

  17. Ratros says:

    This explains why my sister’s community can fine her for having porn in her house…..I think….

    I once had a dream about God. In it, he was looking down upon the planet and the havoc we recked and he said unto us, "Damn Kids get off my lawn!"

  18. nightwng2000 says:

    You have spoken… the REAL contradiction that has been made about Freedom of Speech and the Right to petition the government.

    Person A has the Right to voice their own opinions and follow those beliefs themselves.

    Person B has the Right to voice their own opinions and follow those beliefs themselves.

    Person says they have the Right to petition the government and demand that THEIR beliefs be legislated and Person B be required, by law, to follow Person A’s beliefs, even if Person B doesn’t agree with those beliefs. 

    Moreover, the belief being petitioned for is consentual and, originally, was was at the individual discretion of each individual (each individual could volutarily choose, or not choose, to do or not do, participate or not participate, etc).  Example:  I choose to read a book someone else doesn’t like.  My reading of this book does not even take place in the presence of someone else, let alone out loud in the presence of someone else. 

    So by what ACTUAL Right does Person A have to petition the government to prevent or force Person B from doing or not doing, participating or not participating, believing or not believing in what Person A demands through the petition?

    Such petition, in fact, by logical, intelligent, NEUTRAL law, would actually violate the Rights of Person B. 

    In shorter terms:  Person A’s Rights end where Person B’s Rights begin, and vice versa.

    Of course, the US legal system, contrary to what is actually written in the US Constitution (let alone any other government on this planet) does not truly abide by a NEUTRAL legal system.


    NW2K Software

    Nightwng2000 has also updated his MySpace page: Nightwng2000 is now admin to the group "Parents For Education, Not Legislation" on MySpace as

  19. Seiena_Cyrus says:

    yeah but at the same time as responsible adults, shouldn’t they know California is 21 billion in the red and thus as responsible adults tell him to get us out of debt then try again? I mean seems only responsible that you get your priorities in order but I guess protecting kids from big bad video games that I’ve watched employees look at a kid and go "….No…." when they said they wanted to buy is just waaay more important then the kids’ education, and physical safety.

  20. LegendaryGamer00 says:

    I have a headache…


    (Nobody got the hypocrytical joke…)




    Making the world a better place… one Headshot at a time…

  21. JDKJ says:

    And, if it means that much to them, then instead of repeatedly asserting that the games are harmful but without a shred of evidence in support of the assertion, they would get about the business of digging up some hard science which actually proves that the games are harmful. And quit asking the Supreme Court dumb-ass questions with obvious answers like: "Do we really have to prove that the games are harmful?"

  22. MechaTama31 says:

    Even if you accept his premise that video games are harmful to minors, there still remains the fact that nobody has a First Amendment right to sell alcohol and cigarettes.  It is a lot more difficult to legally suppress speech, as it should be.  This is a fundamental difference with far-reaching ramifications, and you cannot simply handwave it away by repeatedly asserting that the games are harmful.

  23. Krono says:

    Unlikely they’ll jump down his throat. At that point he’ll have done everything within his power to fight for this law.


  24. hellfire7885 says:

    And they’ll be the first to jump down Arnie’s throat the second the appeal is denied.

  25. LegendaryGamer00 says:





    Making the world a better place… one Headshot at a time…

  26. TBoneTony says:

    Videogames are not harmfull. Parents Television Council IS harmful to the healthy minds of adults who are doing the right thing and making their own decision.


    If you think that Violent Videogames are bad, go to Japan and your heads will explode like the Hiroshima Bomb.


    And if you don’t like the surpreme court’s decision that the bill is and ALWAYS was unconsitutional. Then you should ask yourselves perhaps you should live in a country like Pakistan and see how society is Violent without any Violent Videogames.


  27. KayleL says:

    They say that is law is clearly needed because 36% of minors could get a rated M game. They make it sound like the movie industry is doing a much better job.

  28. E. Zachary Knight says:

    So…Uh…You want to go to jail then? By locking them up for exercising their First Amendment rights, you are violating their first amendment rights and so you would need to go to jail.

    These people have every right to voice their opinion that games are harmful and should be restricted. They have every right to petition the government to create and enforce those restrictions.

    This is why we have check and balances in the government. So that if someone tries to do something that violates the constitution, it can be fought and removed.

    E. Zachary Knight
    Oklahoma City Chapter of the ECA

    E. Zachary Knight
    Divine Knight Gaming
    Oklahoma Game Development
    Rusty Outlook
    Random Tower
    My Patreon

  29. LegendaryGamer00 says:

    The only reason there is any sucess rate is because they did their research at stores with crooked employees.


    Every fucking store I go to always:

    1. Checks for I.D.

    2. Requires parent accompanying minors when selling.

    3. Has a bunch of signs all over the fucking store with info about the ESRB.



    I say we introduce legislation that imprisons anyone attempting to restrict/eliminate anyone’s First Amendmant Rights, then we can jail these fascist assholes and get it over with.



    Making the world a better place… one Headshot at a time.

  30. BearDogg-X says:

    No, Tim "Retarded Assclown" Winter, when those sales only represent less than 1% of all video game sales, this piece of trash law is clearly not needed. Especially when the state that’s filing the appeal is $21 billion in the red and is laying off teachers, police officers, and firefighters because they can’t afford to pay them.

    Geaux Saints, Geaux Tigers, Geaux Hornets, Jack Thompson can geaux chase a chupacabra.

    Proud supporter of the New Orleans Saints, LSU, 1st Amendment; Real American; Hound of Justice; Even through the darkest days, this fire burns always

    Saints(3-4), LSU(7-0)

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