Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game Ads

July 23, 2009 -

A spokeswoman for the Chicago Transit Authority has commented on the federal lawsuit filed against the agency's ban on M-rated video game ads yesterday by the Entertainment Software Association.

Kotaku reports:

Reached for comment... Wanda Taylor, a spokeswoman for the Chicago Transit Authority, told Kotaku that the authority has not yet been served with the suit but that they feels that the ordinance is defensible.

"The CTA does not allow advertising for alcohol or tobacco products and this ordinance is consistent with that long-standing policy," she said...

Taylor pointed out that they have a number of guidelines in place for determining if an advertisement can run on the CTA. The guidelines, she said, require ads to be truthful and not directed at inciting imminent lawless action. The ads cannot be legally obscene, sexually explicit, depict nudity or portray graphic violence nor can they incite lawless illegal action.


Comments

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

"The ads cannot be legally obscene, sexually explicit, depict nudity or portray graphic violence nor can they incite lawless illegal action."

So some guys standing around with the title of the game is legally obscene, there's not even an image of a gun ROFL epic fail. I'm looking forward to seeing the ESA rape them in court on this. These grey haired old men need to be taught a lesson that your not going to bully our industry without consequences. I applaud the ESA

Oh and what about ads for R-rated movies I remember when I was 15(still too young to see R-rated movies) seeing an ad for 50 Cent's movie on a bus and when the Matrix sequels came out I was only in junior high and they were being advertised on there as well.

Oh and I also remember seeing an ad for Blitz 2 on a CTA bus one time yet it was only the ads for GTAIV that caused an uproar.

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

"The ads cannot be legally obscene, sexually explicit, depict nudity or portray graphic violence nor can they incite lawless illegal action."

And it's impossible for an ad for an M-rated game to not violate at least one of those guidelines, right?

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Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

---------------------------------------------------- Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

"The guidelines, she said, require ads to be truthful and not directed at inciting imminent lawless action."

So buying M rated games is now illegal in Chicago? Dennis how could you have missed such an important story? I mean hell there's no way she would just spout random facts unrelated to the case at hand.

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Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

---------------------------------------------------- Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

What's the point of citing all these guidelines as evidence that they can ban it when the ads don't even come close to crossing those guidelines? This is more evidence in FAVOR of having the ads be allowed than against it. 

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

Funny, she names all of those guidelines and these ads fall into absolutely none of them.

I'd love it if they cited the same tired studies, biased, and flawed as their reason for the ban.

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

Not having a leg to stand on seems to be a popular trend in some circles.

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

I seem to recall that the ads showed no unlawful activites, not even any weaponry.  They simply showed various characters from the GTA game.

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

Technically, that doesn't matter. The CTA is saying, whether correctly or not, that the advertised product is harmful to minors. Therefore any advertising of the product, regardless of the content of the advertising, is banned. To use their cigarette analogy - again, whether the analogy is well-placed or not - it doesn't matter that the advertising doesn't depict someone smoking a cigarrette. If the advertising said "Newport 100s" and nothing more, it'd still be banned.   

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

If that's the case, they have no leg to stand on.  There's no hard evidence that video games are harmful to minors.  And even more, unlike tobacco and alcohol, there are no laws restricting sales to minors.

How can they justify banning certain game ads if it's perfectly legal for any 10 year old to buy GTA (assuming he can find a store willing sell to him).

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

"Taylor pointed out that they have a number of guidelines in place for determining if an advertisement can run on the CTA. The guidelines, she said, require ads to be truthful and not directed at inciting imminent lawless action. The ads cannot be legally obscene, sexually explicit, depict nudity or portray graphic violence nor can they incite lawless illegal action."

And how would the GTA ads (or any other M-rated Game ad) have done any of this?  It's going to be hilarious to watch Chicago bleed some more dollars from their wasteful budget; maybe they'll become the next California.  Or Cleveland.

I've seen violent R-Rated Movies advertised on Chicago (and other TA) buses.  I've seen ads that are, indeed, sexual in nature.  So their line is bullshit, and they're unfairly singling out the industry.  And that'll be great for the ESA to point out.  I'm glad to see, however, that Chicago is still a corrupt city of corrupt people.

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

Why do these ignorant people keep insisting that video games are somehow on the same level as Alcohol and Tobacco? They are nothing at alike. Video games are an artform protected by the First Amendment. Alcohol and Tobacco are substances that can harm the healt hof anyone who uses them and are not protected by the First Amendment.

The guidelines, she said, require ads to be truthful and not directed at inciting imminent lawless action. The ads cannot be legally obscene, sexually explicit, depict nudity or portray graphic violence nor can they incite lawless illegal action.

Please tell me what M rated game has advertisments that fall into any of those categories? By blanket banning all M rated game ads you are violating this very ideal. An M rated game can be advertised quite effectively without violating any of those provisions.

Morons.

E. Zachary Knight
Oklahoma City Chapter of the ECA
http://www.theeca.com/chapters_oklahoma

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

Agreed

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

Actually, there are similarities between advertising of alcohol and cigarettes and advertising of videogames. If nothing else, it's all advertising. And advertising does enjoy some protection under the First Amendment. Not as much protection as non-commercial speech, but protection nevertheless. The difference is that alcohol and cigarettes undisputably pose a risk of harm to health, thereby satisfying one of the requirements of the First Amendment needed to lawfully restrict their advertising. That videogames are harmful isn't at all clear and it is this fact against which those who seek to restrict videogames and the advertising of videogames keep smashing their heads.

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

Sure you can defend it, doesn't mean you have a snowball's chance in hell of winning it. It sounds like they're planning to go with a "legally obscene" or "incitement" defense. I really hope they do because we could get a definitive ruling in a Federal District Court that Grand Theft Auto is NOT legally obscene, which would be nice.

If that is their defensive strategy they've got quite the uphill battle. Basically they're admitting right out that they are engaging in content based suppression of speech which is presumptively unconstitutional and the burden falls on the defendant to prove the material is non-protected speech.

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

Well, we would not get a ruling that the game is NOT legally obscene. Rather we would get a ruling that the ads for the game did not violate any of their restrictions.

E. Zachary Knight
Oklahoma City Chapter of the ECA
http://www.theeca.com/chapters_oklahoma

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

I stand corrected, I read the quote as saying "The ads not be for products that are legally obscene." My bad.

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

I always sit when I have to be corrected. It's easier on my feet.

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

fail JDKJ :(

 

Trevor Gray
ganjookie@yahoo.com

Trevor Gray
ganjookie@yahoo.com

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

Win some, lose some. Ain't gonna win 'em all.

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

Actually, we'd get a ruling that the restriction of the ads violated the First Amendment by unjustly singling out the ads solely on the basis of their content. At least, that's the hope of the ESA. It's not the legality of the ads which the ESA is defending, it's the illegality of the ordinace restricting the ads which they're opposing. 

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

"The CTA does not allow advertising for alcohol or tobacco products and this ordinance is consistent with that long-standing policy," she said...

Videogames are now alcohol and tobacco products? Hmmmmmmm........Consistent with that policy huh? I've been to Chicago several times. Nothing consistent about it. They still have adverts for alcohol in various places in the city.

"The guidelines, she said, require ads to be truthful and not directed at inciting imminent lawless action. The ads cannot be legally obscene, sexually explicit, depict nudity or portray graphic violence nor can they incite lawless illegal action."

So an image of three men, and a game logo counts as that? Hrmmm...no nudity...no violence....nothing sexually explicit....nothing obscene (unless you are Jack)...and nothing inciting lawless illegal action.... In short to CTA: F A I L

They were PAID to display adverts, they defaulted on their contract. Now they are facing the wrath of doing something they shouldn't have. They brought this on themselves.

Re: Faced with ESA Lawsuit, CTA Defends Ban on M-rated Game ...

Tobacco and alcohol? Are those our analogies now? Are those protected by 1rst A?
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