C&VG Investigation Stings Online Retailers for Selling Adult Games to ‘Under-Age Boy’

An investigation conducted by UK gaming publication Computer & Video Games shows that some online retailers are not doing their best to keep under-age children from buying mature-rated video games online. The investigative report (which includes some video) shows a person purchasing three games online without any age verification checks blocking his purchase. The UK-based retailers found to be lacking in this area include Amazon UK, HMV and Zavvi.

The Trading Standards agency has criticized retailers for loopholes found in their online systems and has warned them: "Should a minor make a purchase from these sites, the businesses would not have a due diligence defence to protect them from prosecution." One of the games purchased was Manhunt 2 from Rockstar Games, which the BBFC initially refused to classify in 2007 due to its violent content. That decision was later overruled following an appeal.

C&VG says that its investigation also found:

•In the past five years, the market share of 18-rated games has grown from 5 to 18 percent

•About a third of all retail games are sold online

•The most popular age group of Facebook fans for games such as Assassin's Creed 3, Gears of War 3 and Modern Warfare 3 was in the 13-17 range.

•Both an anonymous EA games director, and a director at Avalanche Studios, believe that more than half of their audience are under age.

Trading Standards officer Paul Miloseski-Reid said that the organization will now engage with retailers to discuss the severity of online loopholes after learning about the C&VG results.

He told the publication that retailers "must employ systems to verify the age of the purchaser if they are to have a due diligence defence against prosecution."

"There have been concerns for a number of years that many internet retailers, which include some of the national high street chains, are not taking enough precautions, if any at all, to prevent children purchasing age-restricted products from their websites. The problem appears to be widespread," he added.

Source: C&VG

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  1. 0
    bluelightrevival says:

    Man if you go on that site and look at all the comments those people are insane. They think parents should be fined if they buy the kids one of these games. They felt no kid, No matter the age should ever play a M rated game even though some admitted that it in no way was harmful. Some said they worked in retail and would tell the parents who would try to buy one for a kid that it was very harmful and can have all kinds of effects on there minds and they even admitted that was not true, So they lied for what?

    Also one guy said he would exaggerate the content to stop the parent from buying the games and even got mad that some bought the kids them anyway because the kid would protest, He called them horrible parents and said a parents decision should always over rule the demand of a child. Even though he said that he lied about the content.

    They all believed that no kid at any age should play them solely because they FELT the games where inappropriate for kids and anyone that disagreed on what they felt was appropriate or not for a kid was a idiot who should never have kids. I always felt the parents job was to make decisions about what was or was not appropriate for their kid because they would know better then anyone else.

    All kids are different and we go by maturity, Going by age ratings alone can damage your Childs growth. Most kids that are allowed to explore things out side there age rating now and then become in many ways more mature then others who do not. It is how kids grow up. Treat a child like a child and they will grow up to be a child. Treat them like a adult and they will become just that.


    Because of the craziness of those comments i would never trust what that site says.

  2. 0
    Mrxknown_JG says:

    They stated his debit card has his date of birth, so retailers could use that as a way to restrict sales.

    However, if he used his parent's card…then he got through that loophole.

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