Activision Files Friend-of-the-Court Brief in SCOTUS Fight

Activision Blizzard has thrown its support behind the ESA/EMA in its looming Supreme Court battle related to Schwarzenegger v. EMA (No. 08-1448). The world’s largest publisher joins the masses of professionals in the film, music, publishing, advertising, journalism, free speech, creative guilds, software and comic book industries. They join with media-related groups, legal scholars, social science professionals, and 10 state Attorneys General, in the fight for the video game industry.

Activision Blizzard said this morning that it independently filed a friend-of-the-court brief with the U.S. Supreme Court, stating that the existing industry ratings and enforcement efforts were sufficient in keeping mature-rated games out of the hands of children. Bobby Kotick, Activision Blizzard CEO, issued the following statement on the company’s brief:

"Our First Amendment has survived intact for 219 years amid far greater technological, historical and social challenges," said Bobby Kotick, CEO of Activision Blizzard. "The argument that video games present some kind of new ominous threat that requires a wholesale reassessment of one of our nation’s most treasured freedoms and to take that freedom away indiscriminately from an entire group of our population based on nothing but age is beyond absurd. These are the same attacks Americans have witnessed against every previous emerging entertainment medium and genre including books, comics, rock ‘roll, movies, TV and the Internet. In each case, freedom prevailed. We are thrilled to be able to be an important part of this historic effort to protect our Constitution and to ensure that video games remain vibrant form of expression for every gamer in our constituency."

Kotick continued, "Instead of tampering with the nation’s Constitution and wasting taxpayers’ money on setting forth unenforceable regulations during budgetary crisis, California could and should have adopted any number of measures and campaigns designed to ensure even higher rates of parental understanding of, and reliance on, the industry regulation system. Video game industry is a homegrown California economic success story providing thousands of highly paid skilled jobs at the time of economic crisis."

Activision Blizzard’s brief can be found online at

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  1. 0
    Master Taffer says:

    I never thought in my wildest nightmares would I ever be caught saying this, but…

    "I agree with Bobby Kotick."

    *Shudder*  I made this sacrifice for the game industry and consumers at large.  Now if you’ll excuse me, I must go shower and burn my fingers off my hands for having typed that…

  2. 0
    Cheater87 says:

    Nice job Activison for telling how AO games are banned frome everyone. They should of told how this bill would ban T and M games for everyone as well by giving it a government backed adults only rating as well.

  3. 0
    Sirusjr says:

    Having read this brief, I think that it is significant in that it is the most clear explanation of the ESRB ratings and how they help parents make good decisions about what games are appropriate for their children.  Even as a gamer it was interesting because I didn’t know all the history of the ratings system.  It is also nice to have a clear explanation of what many gamers already understand; the lack of AO games classified and how the ESRB reacted to hot coffee.  Bravo activision!

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