For all the Australian gamers waiting patiently for an R18+ videogame rating category, a GameSpot columnist offers some advice—don’t hold your breath.
Despite petitions in favor of the addition of an R18+ rating, sponsored by retailer GAME (which received over 72,000 signatures) and EB Games and Grow Up Australia (which was signed by over 46,000 supporters), the government continues to drag its feet when it comes to the subject.
Why? According to GameSpot, “They do not believe that enough Australians care about video game classification in order to take the issue seriously and so continue to find new methods of stalling and deliberation when it is brought up.”
Indeed, Minister for Home Affairs Brendan O’Connor has continued to press for more community feedback on the subject, claiming that the “silent majority” still needed to weigh in on the subject, perhaps the first time in history a group of mute citizens has made an impact on a government.
Also delaying the introduction of a new rating tier is the “problem" that all classification ministers must be in agreement for any new introduction:
This current system is too stringent. A difference in opinion from one minister to another, more often than not based on personal beliefs and prejudices means this issue is discussed on a personal level, not a national level. What is in the best interests of the Australian public turns into what is in the best interests for each classification minister, which ultimately means R18+ for games has little hope of ever becoming a reality.
Gamers, it appears, have done “everything they can,” writes the frustrated columnist. She continued, “It is now up to the nongaming Australian public to voice their opinion and support the abolishment of censorship and the modernisation of Australia's archaic classification laws.”
Image from Slap Upside the Head