While the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) has until September 10 to file its own brief with the U.S. Supreme Court in regards to Schwarzenegger v. EMA, the organization issued a statement in reaction to a brief filed by the state of California on Monday.
Trumpeting the ESA’s dominating string of victories in such cases, and perhaps attempting to take some of the wind out of the sails of California State Senator Leland Yee, ESA President and CEO Michael Gallagher stated:
Computer and video games are First Amendment protected speech. There is an unbroken chain of more than a dozen previous court rulings agreeing. Courts across the country recognize that computer and video games, like other protected expression such as movies, books, and music, have an artistic viewpoint, and use sounds and images to create an experience and immerse the player in art. That is why other courts have unanimously affirmed that video games are entitled to the same constitutional protection as movies, music, books, and other forms of art.
California’s law is no different than others before it. It is clearly unconstitutional under First Amendment principles. We look forward to presenting our arguments in the Supreme Court of the United States and vigorously defending the works of our industry’s creators, storytellers and innovators.