Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam is awash in a sea of pornographic games, which are displayed—and often can be played—out in the open.
An article in the Vietnam Vet Bridge details the spread of such games, from touch-screen, table top interfaces in malls or trading centers, to being offered for sale in markets (for use with game consoles like the PlayStation 2) and ultimately, to their availability online. One shopkeeper claimed that she sells “many games with sexy girls daily, adding that they were a favorite among teens.”
A reporter from the paper Tuoi Tre purchased one game disc for the price of 20,000 dong (approximately $1.07 U.S.), prompting the paper to corner Le Manh Ha (pictured), Director of the Ho Chi Minh City Department of Information and Communications, for some answers regarding an apparent lack of government regulation.
Manh Ha noted that the government had fined six companies that offered the porn games without a license. While he indicated knowledge of the games appearing in shopping malls, he stated that the responsibility for dealing with the situation “lies with other departments.”
Manh Ha did, however, offer an outline for how to deal with the porn game explosion:
To restrict these harmful games, we need cooperation from three sides. Players have to be aware of the uselessness and dangers of the games. Families have to educate their children about the harmfulness of these games. The state has to strengthen management over games.
How exactly such games are licensed and defined also appears to be up in the air, as Manh Ha added, “We asked for definition of violence and gambling to licence such games, but these definitions are still absent. We also requested to end the licencing of new games while these definitions are being drafted.”