Australia's new classification guidelines due to take effect on Jan. 1, 2013 are already becoming irrelevant, according to the Interactive Games and Entertainment Association (iGEA) CEO Ron Curry. In an interview with Polygon, Curry says that it is a good thing that Australia finally will be offering an R18+ classification for video games, he thinks that a broader conversation needs to take place that involves Autralia's games industry, gamers and the government about whether the guidelines serve their purpose and what can be done to ensure people are as informed as possible about their game purchases.
"The current guidelines have six criteria (themes, violence, sex, language, drug use, nudity), which are slowly becoming less and less important," Curry says. "There are other things that parents are worried about: they're worried about user-generated content, they're worried about privacy, they're worried about access to children chatting with adults, they're worried about gambling, they're worried about in-game purchases and geo-locating."
"So if we're going to look at classification, we need to ask, 'Why do we classify?' We classify to give people information about content, mainly for parents, the argument goes. Are we addressing their concerns? Probably not."
Curry goes on to say that the existing six criteria are still important, but there are other equally important issues that need to be addressed and that a new set of guidelines may need to be created to deal with those issues.
You can read the rest of the interview here.