Byron Report Released in U.K. - Ratings Will Change, Laws Will be Passed

March 27, 2008 -


Dr. Tanya Byron's long-awaited review of the effects of video games and the Internet on children has been released in the U.K.

While much is being written about Byron's report, the key points, as described by the Mirror, include:
-Giving video games a more "robust" movie-style age classification.

-Making it illegal for retailers to sell any video game to a child younger than the age rating on the game box. At present, only the most violent and sexually explicit games are regulated.

-Developing a new code of practice aimed at regulating social networking sites, such as Bebo and Facebook, including introducing standards on privacy and harmful content

-Undertaking a new publicity campaign for parents to understand the sort of digital material their children are accessing on the Internet and how they can block it.

-Introducing new laws banning Internet-assisted suicide.

-Creating a national council to implement the strategy.

The British government has reportedly confirmed that all of Byron's recommendations will be implemented. For her part, Byron told BBC Radio:
In the same way you wouldn't let your 11 to 12 year-old watch the Texas Chainsaw Massacre, which is an 18-rated film, you really shouldn't be letting them play 18-rated video games.

The Guardian reports that British Prime Minister Gordon Brown was quick to support Byron's recommendations:
If our children were leaving the house, or going to a swimming pool or going to play in the street, we would take all the care possible about their safety. Is there proper policing, is there proper safety?

When a child goes on to the computer and on to the internet or on to a video game we should be thinking in the same way. It's really difficult for parents because we didn't grow up in the computer age, many of us.

We've got to make it easier for parents and get the information to them in a more simple form. We've got to get the classification clearer so that people know 12-plus. When someone is trying to sell a game they've got to give the proper information.

Byron added:
I'm making some pretty tough recommendations to the prime minister, to the government, about the video game classification system and about the internet generally and how we can empower parents and teachers and all adults to help children be safe.

I'm asking the prime minister to change legislation so that from 12 upwards children or parents can't buy games unless it's for the right age of the child.

A widely-cited Times Online report, which carried the headline, Computer Games to Get Cigarette-Style Health Warnings seems to overstate the case a bit. While Byron does call for a revamped content rating system as well as ratings that appear on the front of game packaging, GP found no reference to "cigarette-style" warnings in her report.

Those who were rooting for either the PEGI or BBFC classification systems to be favored by Byron will be disappointed. As Next Generation reports, Byron recommends:
Reforming the classification system for rating videogames with one set of symbols on the front of all boxes which are the same as those for film. 

Lowering the statutory requirement to classify video games to 12+, so that it is the same as film classification and easier for parents to understand.

Her report recommends a blending of PEGI and BBFC:
In the context of this Review, where my remit has been to consider the interests of children and young people I recommend a hybrid classification system in which:

- BBFC logos are on the front of all games (i.e. 18,15,12,PG and U).
- PEGI will continue to rate all 3+ and 7+ games and their equivalent logos (across all age ranges) will be on the back of all boxes.

GP: The Byron report will have far-reaching effects on the video game industry in the U.K. In addition, readers can expect that it will be closely studied by political figures, activists and industry types in the U.S.

UPDATE: PC World's Matt Peckham has a rant about the "cigarette-style" warning labels...

WANT A COPY ? Click: Byron Report (report + supporting materials)

Comments

I've only read the areas that are of interest to me but it seems on the whole perfectly reasonable and sensible.

Dennis, can I suggest sticking a link to here up.
http://www.dfes.gov.uk/byronreview/
Amongst other things its got the appendices and lit reviews which make for further reading. Of interest is the documents covering the replies to the Call for Evidence.

In other news

http://www.dcsf.gov.uk/pns/DisplayPN.cgi?pn_id=2008_0059

"Ed Balls and Andy Burnham today welcomed the Byron Review of the risks to children of potentially harmful or inappropriate material on the internet and in video games. Accepting all Dr Byron’s recommendations, they pledged to act immediately on taking forward her proposals."

Going around looking for stories while glancing through the report... not enough coffee in my system to haul through 200+ eerie powerpoint-esque pages just yet.

The BBC focuses on the "overhaul" and throws in one of those glamour shots that Campion mentioned -- I had no idea Dr. Byron was such a fox. Meanwhile, Darren Waters' blog presents it as forcing the gaming industry to undergo "a dramatic increase in workload" while the general area of online activity is left up in the air.
The international news community doesn't seem to be picking up on it yet, although CNN has a bit of alarmism about something called "Miss Bimbo."
---
Fangamer

-Making it illegal for retailers to sell any video game to a child younger than the age rating on the game box. At present, only the most violent and sexually explicit games are regulated.


Like I said before, T rated games; way more tamed than a lot of children cartoons. I'm sure I don't need to list them again there, oh ye Byron Report.

You guys need to get to the findings part. Thats where her recommendations are. She is obviously a big government proponent despite her admissions that video games have barely been shown to cause short term increases in aggression.

"I recommend that the Entertainment Retail Association and the Video
Standards Council work together to review and align their Codes of Practice. I also recommend that this work should include:
-Consideration of using specific and prominent shelf level notices where 18+ rated games appear, in order to support the message that ‘not all games are for children’
-Consideration of punitive measures for non-compliance with these codes
-Agreement on formal, independent monitoring of what information shops provide, the results of which is made available to consumers"

"I recommend that the Government should commission and oversee research to examine (1) if video games are being advertised responsibly, in line with age-ratings, and (2) the role of marketing in stimulating children and young peoples’ desire to play video games which are not appropriate for their age."

"I... recommend that there should be periodical monitoring by Trading Standards of retailers’ compliance in not selling video games to underage
children and young people, which would need to be properly resourced by
Government."

"I recommend a hybrid classification system:"

You can make your own conclusions about how even handed this woman is, but she is proposing things that have been fought by the industry in the states and declared unconstitutional.

"The government said all the recommendations would be implemented."

I'm very fearful of the government making blanket statements like that. They're implementing ALL of the recommendations? wtf? That scares me. Even if the recommendations are only to host ice cream parties every other Friday... to make a statement like that is never a good sign.. at least IMO.

I'm looking forward to hearing Leland Yee (and Schwarzenegger) complain when his appeal is denied. ..I can respect Dr. Byron's effort though, because it's not full of sound bites and leading questions for starters.

@jon

Different cultures have different values, there is no absolutes in those regards. Just because something is unconstitutional in the states does not automatically imply its illegal or wrong in the UK.

Most of what's in the report doesn't seem that bad. Inconvenient, perhaps counterproductive (putting two ratings on a game, when they are saying parents are unable to understand the one?), but not that bad. Except for this:

It also recommends that new PCs be sold with software that will help prevent children seeing harmful online content.

Later:

Work should also be done to see if there are technical means that can oversee where people go online and warn them about illegal or harmful sites they may visit.

It also called for the creation of kitemarked filtering software that is installed on all new PCs sold for use in the home and which is given away with all new net contracts.

(http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/7314751.stm)

Not directly game related, but scary nonetheless. The wording is not exactly clear as to whether or not the report is recommending that the government -require- such software on all PCs sold for home use. Making it voluntary is still iffy, because who really wants the government, or software created/influenced by the government, constantly monitoring their internet activity? There are plenty of content filters, that block out pornographic or otherwise age inappropriate material, already available. Why does there need to be a government created one?

This leans a little too far in the Big Brother direction for comfort. Especially as the report says the governments accepts and will act on -all- the recommendations.

(From the same source)
Schools secretary Ed Balls "... said the government would legislate where necessary to bring some of the recommendations into force."

'I’m asking the prime minister to change legislation so that from 12 upwards children or parents can’t buy games unless it’s for the right age of the child.'

That was the only line that made me confused, because the second half of it is (a) pretty much un-enforceable and (b) A good 1/3 of the problem.

Other than that, pretty much what I expected.

I'm still not convinced Byron was the best person to do this... what does she do?

Odd I got the impression most people were expecting the report to be a pretty calm affair. The real question is what parts of the report will the government act on? Personally, I see little for ammunition for things to go wrong (mercifully).

Unfortunately though, Dr. Byron does support banning games seemingly on the basis that parents aren't educated enough to understand the system (see 7.22). I really struggle with this view, how clear does an 18 cert have to be? I'm glad she still leaves the door open for change but nevertheless I do feel it's little more than sweeping the problem under the carpet. Banning some games, which are judged to test the boundaries of good taste, will do nothing to keep the 18 games that do pass out of the hands of children (so what is the logic?).

On a related note, I don't know if anyone noticed this:

6.15 Overall parents feel that deciding what games are appropriate has to be their decision
because it depends on their child, but that they would welcome clearer and more specific
guidance explaining the rationale for the age ratings. In particular, some parents assume
that the ratings would be too conservative and hence ignore them.

It really caught my eye and, although I don't want to go OOT with an anecdote, it does seem to suggest some people have a significant lack of faith in our classification system. Surveys, regarding banning etc. are all well and good but their shortfalls and hypothetical nature really are exposed when individual cases are considered. It would appear that placing a parent in a shop complete with nagging child can result in 15/18 games being purchased anyway, presumably on the basis of "I want a quiet life" and "it's probably not that bad anyway". IMHO, this goes to the heart of the problem and Dr. Byron is right to focus on it. We really need to drive home the fact that ratings are not just pretty box art, but a considered opinion regarding the content of a game. I doubt the same parents who give their 13 year old and 18 cert game would do the same thing with an 18 cert film; that problem seriously needs to be addressed.

Gift.

I sadly expect more games to be banned now. I also expect games to take even longer to come out in the UK, and some smaller games wont come out at all.

It has some merit at first, especially revolving research done on the effects of games (or the lack thereof) on kids, but then it sort of falls over into politcally pandering bullsh!t.

@ me

Shes a child psychologist. Shes more known however for hosting the BBC3 UK show 'House of Tiny Tearaways' where various terror infants are calmed down through both dicipline of the kids and also by sorting out any problems the parents are having. Its more of a 'help' show than a showcase of bad children though (like supernanny).

@Ian Charles

I disagree there. Some 18 rated games may be not bought 'as much' thanks to ratings being more clear to some parents but sales will still go on. Just take a look at the sales charts in the review to see that '18' rated games are not the most bought anyway.

The only real problems this report generated were the reactions of the newspapers. I get The Times, which overstated that all games would receive 'health warnings', which I immediately envisaged as being like "THIS GAME WILL MAKE YOUR CHILD CRAZY" stickers on the cover, but further reading showed what they actually meant was that a BBFC classification had to be shown on the front of games.

Hmm, that sounds like an extreme measure - I'll just look at my games collection to see what covers will look like with these on the front. Hmm, Oblivion; no wait, it already has one. BioShock! Nope, that already has one too. F.E.A.R? World in Conflict? Company of Heroes? Gears of War? The Witcher? Half Life 2? Splinter Cell Double Agent? All of them ALREADY HAVE THE BBFC RATING ON THE FRONT.

In addition, the paper said that Byron called for consoles to be made with parental controls. For someone doing a report for the government, surely she'd know that all three consoles already do?

Meanwhile, The Times had a column along the side giving examples of controversial games. GTA IV - players are encouraged to run over pedestrians, murder policemen and drink drive! Are they? I get the feeling most players will be perceptive enough to realise that driving gets harder if they make Nico drink.

The column continued. God of War - players are encouraged to burn prisoners alive and slice women in two. No mention of the execellent narrative of your character being an obvious bastard I guess.

While I bet the red top tabloids were quite a lot less even handed, I think the only argument here needs to be with right wing lunatics in the media who.

@Haggard.

In other words, the only problem with the report are the Tabloids newspapers ruining everything.

Tabloids are tabloids. We can't do a THING about them. Heck, these people did a report on "Buzz, the School Quiz", and what did they do? They created a made up Jack Thompson quote about how he thinks it won't work because "games are demeaning and teach no value whatsoever". When JT found out, he was furious, because he was never contacted for an interview and never even heard about the game.

If these people can create a non existent Jack Thompson quote, they'll take this report out of context.

Well, I've had abit of a read.. no way I'm reading all of it, I got dailies in WoW to do.. but overall it seems excellent, well balanced, and something I can defiantly get behind.

I especially liked her references to how our culture seems to be trying to avoid any risk or perception of harm to children.. and of how she mentioned that the internet and video games may be forcing adults to face the realities of childhood that they may not like.. that children need to take risks and explore things that sometimes adults, quite naturally, don't want them exploring.

But isn't a "child psychologist" biased from the start? The assumption seems to be that all games are for kids.... again.

It seems like Matt Peckham,in his blog, is reacting to a poor headline about this instead of responding to the actual report.

"I’m asking the prime minister to change legislation so that from 12 upwards children or parents can’t buy games unless it’s for the right age of the child."

Wow, did she really just say that? Children, I understand - it's the UK and Mum's gonna watch the kiddies, no suprise there. But parents!, too!? Maybe GP quoted her out of context, or is she seriously advocating making it illegal to buy out-of-age-range games for your own children?

I'll read the full report this evening, but that quote struck me as kind of appalling, if it holds to be true.

~~All Knowledge is Worth Having~~

@ jon:

"You can make your own conclusions about how even handed this woman is, but she is proposing things that have been fought by the industry in the states and declared unconstitutional."

This is what worries me; how the US politicos are going to try to use this. "Look, the UK made it illegal to sell games to people below the ratings, we should do it too!"

On the one hand, she points out there's no evidence to support the "games cause violence" argument, but then goes on to recommend what I feel is a pretty high level of direct government interference/regulation of the sale of games. That doesn't quite jive in my mind.

And yeah, about that "intended for" bit... HOW, pray tell, do you plan to divine just who a game is INTENDED FOR when it is purchased? If the person handing the cashier the money is of the age required to purchase the game, who the hell are they to say "no, can't do it"? Where would that sort of behavior fly in ANY other industry?

@me

No, your wrong. The report was commissioned to investigate the effects and influence of new media on children. Games are only one part of the report.

@ me

No, she states, clearly, in her report that she understands that the majority of gamers in the UK are in thier late twenties, and that there is a section of games designed with adult gamers in mind.

She basically states that those games should be for adults, she just thinks that kids should have access to those games restricted, but not that the games should be banned from sale. At least thats how it appears to me.

A few things I would like to point out.
1) This is in the UK, hense no 1st Amendment. They may have somethin gsimilar though, but perhaps not to the same extent.

2) She is expressing the same thing I had said for a while. I don't have a problem with them selling videogames the same as movies. What I object to is the "video games as porn" attitude. This means that in areas where a kid couldn't buy an R rated move, they couldn't buy an M rated game. I understand this isn't a totally popular opinion, but I believe it is fair and balanced and agrees with the "Games as Art" argument. If moveis = art, and R rated movies = kids can't buy, then M rated games should = kids can't buy.

What I do disagree with is the idea that games are often rated much stronger then they should be. Oblivion should have stayed with a T for Teen rating. The Barbie doll like undetailed nudity should not have gotten a stronger rating.

@ Haggard:

"In addition, the paper said that Byron called for consoles to be made with parental controls. For someone doing a report for the government, surely she’d know that all three consoles already do?"

Forgot to mention that part. Every tech-related "recommendation" she made up there is already in existance. All three current-gen consoles have parental controls available. Web browsers already have security settings to keep children from viewing "high risk" web sites, and they already have browser histories to show where users have been. I have a bad feeling that those "recommendations" are going to be warped by the time they actually see legislation.

@me - She's a qualified child psychologist so I think she was an ideal choice. She's relatively well known on television meaning a lot more parent's eyes will find the report. That's a good thing.

The problem here, as well as in the US, is the knowledge gap between adults and kids. Parents who were not raised with computers tend not to play games and dismiss them as being 'for kids'. It's all well and good saying that parents should take responsibility, they absolutely should, but you can't force them to take up their kid's hobbies to make sure they're happy with how that hobby influences them. I am not interested in stamp collecting and no amount of will can force me to take it up as a hobby. Considering some of the nonsense in the media that we've seen, this needed to be as high-profile, and accessible, as possible. I think this report is exactly that.

The only problem with the recommendation for me is the 12 certificate. I don't see the point. The way the BBFC rates games is broken. Take Tony Hawk's Pro Skater. A 15 rated game that some parents will not buy simply because it's a 15. Compare it to Medal of Honour, where you slaughter hundreds of people but hey, that's okay because there's no blood and the Nazi's were horrible anyway.

The system needs to take into account why the game may be objectionable and put it on the box. People are offended by different things. If there's swearing, note that on the box. If there's violence, note that on the box. If you're not offended by violence but you are by swearing, don't buy the game for your kid. Easy.

@Ian Charles - What games have been banned? Manhunt 2's ban has been lifted meaning there is clearly a solid appeals process. No need to be sad.

So, is anyone going to tell the PC World's Matt Peckham that the "cigarette styled Warning labels" was fabricated by the newspaper and was not in the original report?

To tell you the truth, I think this actually good. The byron report is the first step into initating change, which does need to be there. I hope the changes are as effective as they are hoping it to be.

I did find it funny that they are going to regulate facebook and other networking sites though.

I feel that the mainstream media are blowing this out to be more than what it seems,

also it will be hard to penalise someone like a retailer trying to sell a 12 rated game to a 10 year old, it seems to be a little insane if the kid is mature enough to understand it...

Also this kind of law is also unconstitutonal and will be hard to pass in the UK as it has been in the US.

I feel that what Byron says is true, but what the politicians and the media are saying 'so called' recomendations are perhaps over the top and generally have not read the Byron report yet.

anyway, I am going to read it now.

Also, you can't protect children from everything, also they need to know how to handle their own problems too, like you can't ban bullying because it is a socitey issue and no one can control it except for those individuals themselves...

Also I thought that the PEGI symbols were really clear and they reach a wide European audience that does not always speek English...

That is why symbols are there for...

Anyway, it is obvious that the real problem is that parents never grew up with these ratings so any change will be useless because there will be some parents will never understand them anyway no matter how hard you try,

sorry to rain on the parade but that is my own opinions before I read this...

I have read what others in the mainstream say, and now I am going to read this report for myself and reply back saying a few things about it...hopefully positive things...

@GoodRobotUs

Where is that quote:

"I’m asking the prime minister to change legislation so that from 12 upwards children or parents can’t buy games unless it’s for the right age of the child"

come from? I can't find it in the report.

I, for one, am less worried about the content of the report, but how the government will interpet it. The government have made no bones about how they want to bring down increased censorship on the artform, and I can see them taking the recommendations and implementing them 110%- dangerous for the more heavy-handed recommendations.

I'd also like to know what effect this will have on the BBFC's ratings- will they go more draconian than they already are, or will a greater number of games running through their offices cause them to understand the medium better and as such provide better ratings?

Having skimmed through the report, it's not wound up bad, but then it's far from good. I think it'll be a while before we truly find out, either way.

/b

@ Cidas

What needs actually changing then? If a game is BBFC or PEGI the rating is clearly marked on the box, if you watched the news today you would have seen parents that ignore them anyway, so the rating system works but its ignored by parents.

If the game is BBFC rated (like movies) its against the law for a shop to sell them to a kid who is under that age.

All i see here is teach the parents when i'm sure most know and dont care, god sake my mother knew nothing about games until i was interested and she took that time to see what i was playing and weather it was suitable for me.

More parents should take a interest yes will this make a difference? No

Read the entire thing this morning.

It is extremely well balanced, and many of the recommendations she makes are simply enforcing things that developers, publishers and games companies do already voluntarily anyway.

Ive read it, and Im not worried, it's a superb piece of investigation and conclusion IMO.

Ah, I see the quote is not from the report but from "The Guardian".

The media are, as usual trying to make a headline, and sadly "Respected child psychologist says games should be rated like movies." isn't as attention grabbing as "Evil Video Games will need cigarette style health warnings!!" So they twist things.
The byron report seems well balanced and curiously calm mannered. From the brief look I've had and the comments here, I think that the general consensus is right in thinking she's done a good job and more or less agreed with people.

I'm very intrigued by the comments of a few US posters who seem concerned by games being regulated like films here, I understand the 1st ammendment makes this bizarrely illegal in America, but it blatantly hasn't killed the film industry here and is unlikely to have a major impact on the games industry. What is the real concern?

@ Tbone Tony

Also this kind of law is also unconstitutonal and will be hard to pass in the UK as it has been in the US.

Sorry but no, we have this on movies, the BBFC rating is law and is punishable, if a kid buys an 18 rated movie, that shop is heavy fined, so if all games were BBFC rated then it covers it.

The States run on a total different way of doing things, you can take a kid to see Hellraiser, here you can not

@Bill

It isn't in the report. Its in an interview I believe.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2008/mar/27/digitalmedia.childprotection

Those may reflect her personal views and as such why they weren't included in the report.

I've read bits and pieces of the report.

For those who quote saying that she reccommends consoles having parental controls, read again... she says they're already there. For that part, she's pushing for companies to make it more aware that their consoles have parental controls. In my opinion, that's very reasonable.

I really like that she is promoting parental controls.... and education as well... her recommendations that ISPs and Console companies should include step by step, idiot proof, instructions as to how to set things up are excellent.

One problem with it though, how she is suggesting that "all new computers" include it.. since PC sales are not that simple, when you consider self built machines.

Although.. I suppose if you don't know how to set up a piece of software, chances are you are not building your own machine.

So it says "do what we are doing now" and that The Industry should go on a charm offensive. Win hearts and minds of the parents (or at least make the understand that the 18 sticker is their for a reason).

@Colonel Finn:

It's not killed the UK film industry, but it's not done it any favours- not only does indigenous film development lag massively behind foreign output, our retail shelves are not quite as diverse as that of other nations due to the prohibitive cost of getting a rating- distributors of niche content (anime, for one) complain that getting a BBFC rating eats into a disproportionately high amount of their revenue, reducing their potential UK output.

I would also point out that the UK film industry gets huge tax breaks from the government that the games industry does not.

/b

Colonel Finn,

http://www.bbfc.co.uk/classification/c_12.php

No, she said take the 12 rating and make it law to enforce, "parents can’t buy games unless it’s for the right age of the child." How is that in any way how film is currently enforced? Despite the wonky way the BBFC has the force of law currently, this is ither a misstatement by Byron or a call for outright restriction of the rights of adults.

How is it "bizzarely illegal" here in the US? The First establishes free speech, and the due process (forget the amendment now, forgive me here) doesn't allow for a private ratings board, the ESRB's, rating to carry the force of law. Pretty simple stuff, if you ask me.

I think people are confusing what ratings do: Inform consumers of what content is in games, movies, et cetera so we can choose to partake, or shelter as we see fit. They do NOT exist to tell people how old you have to be to LEGALLY watch/play something. At least here in the US.

~~All Knowledge is Worth Having~~

I'm not a parent, so if anyone is, please explain to me why it seems that people become retarded when they sprout offspring.

"When a child goes on to the computer and on to the internet or on to a video game we should be thinking in the same way. It’s really difficult for parents because we didn’t grow up in the computer age, many of us."

Seriously, people, what the hell? Common sense will dictate to you how to handle things. I'm for providing information on a game's box and elsewhere to determine how a game is rated, but seriously, if you can't make a decision based on what is provided, you don't need to have kids anyway.

*Looks at his copy of Guitar Hero 3 complete with a 12 certificate on it* - Erm... How does this change anything, other than helping to muddy an already confused water???

Well done Tanya... you've managed to achieve absolutely nothing.
When BBFC certificates are on boxes, they are already legally enforceable... Its the PEGI certificates that aren't.

All thats changed is the BBFC will now auto slap a U onto 3+ PEGI rated games, a PG onto 7+ PEGI rated games, and now slow down the release process by having to process potential 12+ rated games... which where possible will mean more black market and imports... Bravo!

@Bill

You're right, my mistake, that's an opinion, not a recommendation, it did confuse me somewhat, I'll admit.

To be honest, there's not much there that I wasn't already expecting, though, I'm not sure of the cost of having Video Games rated by two separate systems when films etc are only rated by one, the Industry may baulk a little at having to pay out twice for ratings compared to other media formats.

@mbkerr
ahh ignore me, i missed your first sentence. sorry. I'm a twat.

"I’m asking the prime minister to change legislation so that from 12 upwards children or parents can’t buy games unless it’s for the right age of the child."

So, under the reports recommendations, it would be illegal for me to purchase a game rated 12+ for my 11-year-old child? Am I misunderstanding?

This is not the way it works for movies in the UK as well, is it? I know there are "12+" BBFC age restrictions for films, but currently, U.K. parents aren't fined or imprisoned for allowing their 11-year-old children to watch Revenge of the Sith, are they?

Does the Byron report suggest that the 12+ recommendation be changed to legally prevent parents from allowing their under-aged children to watch "12+" movies as well, as well as "12+" games? It looks to me like maybe the rule would apply to games only. Is that fair, considering the ?

I don't get what's up with all the "this report just states the obvious" and "this is no big deal" posts. That "12+" enforcement recommendation seems radical and wrong. And it seems like a pretty big deal to me.

Maybe it's just my U.S.-bred sense of individual accountability and civil libertarianism, and maybe these would be out of place in the U.K. Maybe you guys over there are totally cool with this sort of thing? Seem wrong to me, and seems like a pretty big deal.

Why regulate Facebook? It's as safe as you could get without governmental regulation, and what's on Facebook is private. It should be the parents job to watch out. Byron, before enforcing regulation on Facebook, let the public read all your e-mail for now on, and it would be fair. Who knows, you could be a terrorist or a sexual predictor.
 
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MechaCrashI held off on Civ:BE because I am pretty sure it'll get a bigger discount during the Christmas sale.11/26/2014 - 11:09pm
MechaTama31I'm sorely tempted by Civ: BE, but I have to stay strong and remember what it felt like to be repeatedly kicked in the junk by Civ V...11/26/2014 - 10:58pm
MechaCrashNah, just providing more proof that GGers are lying when they claim it's really about ethics in game journalism and not a proxy war against feminism.11/26/2014 - 9:58pm
MaskedPixelanteMSS is Murdered: Soul Suspect.11/26/2014 - 8:34pm
Andrew EisenWhy the interest in Ghomeshi? Is it relevant to something we've been discussing? (Not saying it's not but it seems a rather random thing to bring up.)11/26/2014 - 6:39pm
WonderkarpJian Ghomeshi arrested on sex assault charges, released on $100K bail http://www.citynews.ca/2014/11/26/jian-ghomeshi-arrested-on-sex-assault-charges-released-on-100k-bail/11/26/2014 - 5:55pm
WonderkarpJian Ghomeshi to #Gamergate: Our culture’s toxic masculinity crisis on display http://www.salon.com/2014/10/27/jian_ghomeshi_to_gamergate_americas_toxic_masculinity_crisis_on_display/11/26/2014 - 5:55pm
WonderkarpI saw that. Amiibos are pretty awesome. I have 10 now :P11/26/2014 - 5:49pm
Matthew Wilsonon a weird side of smash news, a level 50 Amiibo almost won a tournament. http://www.siliconera.com/…/story-fox-amiibo-nearly-won-su…/ I guess Nintendo made the cpu ai better.11/26/2014 - 5:44pm
WonderkarpAny of you guys watch Game Grumps? They have an episode detailing alot of the bugs in the hilariously bad Sonic Boom https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O3Jb3A0HLe4&list=UU9CuvdOVfMPvKCiwdGKL3cQ11/26/2014 - 4:19pm
Andrew EisenI'm blanking. What's MMS?11/26/2014 - 4:16pm
james_fudgeI keep an eye on it for really good deals11/26/2014 - 4:00pm
MaskedPixelanteEhh, MSS is only half off, I can wait for it to go under 1011/26/2014 - 3:48pm
NeenekoWhich is why I completely ignore the site.11/26/2014 - 3:15pm
 

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