ECA Call to Action: Tell Congress No More Labels For Games

January 27, 2011 -

The Entertainment Consumer Association issued a call to action today asking members to tell congress that we do not need additional "warning labels" on video games.

Earlier this week Rep. Joe Baca (D CA-43), along with Rep. Frank Wolf introduced a bill that would put warning labels on video games similar to the kinds of warning labels found on cigarettes. Here's the entirety of the alert (which can be found on the ECA web site):

"Tell Congress That There's No Link Between Video Games and Real Life Violence

Rep. Joe Baca (D CA-43), along with Rep. Frank Wolf (R VA-10) as co-sponsor, thinks its 2009 again and is introducing “The Video Game Health Labeling Act of 2011.” This bill, if passed, would require a warning label be affixed to all games rated T or up by the ESRB, regardless of the content descriptors. The warning would read: `WARNING: Excessive exposure to violent video games and other violent media has been linked to aggressive behavior.' The ECA needs your help to make sure this bill does not become law.

Congress is simply misinformed on this issue. While Congressman Baca cites “scientific studies,” the vast majority of studies show that there is no proven causal link between violent video games and negatively aggressive behavior. In fact, several studies suggest that playing video games can be helpful to young people, such as this study by the Pew Internet and American Life Project. Further, the bill requires the label on games that are not rated T or above for violence, which could confuse parents and undermine the ESRB, which according to the FTC is the most enforced media retail system.

'The Video Game Health Labeling Act of 2011' is an unconstitutional restraint on speech that would harm consumers and parents alike. Please join with the ECA. Let your Representatives know that you want them to let the industry and parents continue to use a system that works, and have Congress stay focused on the real problems facing our nation.

Simply read the letter below, fill in the form to the right, then click the Send This Message button and your letter will be emailed to your member of Congress."

Further, the ECA issued a statement on the new campaign against additional labels on games:

"This bill, which failed in the last Congress, is another unfortunate attempt to restrain speech," said Jennifer Mercurio, Vice President & General Counsel of the Entertainment Consumers Association. "We agree with the FTC. The ESRB does a great job of labeling video games to empower parents. Baca’s bill would confuse the public, and cost unsightly sums to taxpayers in defending an unconstitutional bill."

Comments

Re: ECA Call to Action: Tell Congress No More Labels For ...

I'll fill out the form, but in all honesty I don't think we'll need to.  The wording of the bill is identical to the way it was the first time around.  If it didn't get far back then, it certainly won't now.  Not with 1) Congress now being controlled by Republicans, whose main priority right now is repealing the healthcare reform and 2) SCOTUS' immenent decison on EMA Vs. Schwarzenegger.  While it's danegerous to prognosticate at this point, I think the general consensus is they'll rule in the game industry's favor.

Re: ECA Call to Action: Tell Congress No More Labels For ...

If they do put warning labels on video games, can we also put one on C-SPAN warning of the effects of prolonged exposure to politicians?

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Fangamer

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Fangamer

Re: ECA Call to Action: Tell Congress No More Labels For ...

'The Video Game Health Labeling Act of 2011' is an unconstitutional restraint on speech that would harm consumers and parents alike.

I don't know why, but this rhetoric the industry keeps putting out is starting to rub me the wrong way...

Re: ECA Call to Action: Tell Congress No More Labels For ...

Please explain? I think they do go a little to far in saying it would "harm" consumers and parents alike by having these warnings put on them BUT when it comes to the Freedom of Speech aspect and keeping the nanny-state out of our lives, they are right on.

 "No law means no law" - Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black on the First Amendment

"No law means no law" - Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black on the First Amendment

Re: ECA Call to Action: Tell Congress No More Labels For ...

"Harm" is a strong word but in this case it's not inappropriate.

 

Andrew Eisen

Re: ECA Call to Action: Tell Congress No More Labels For ...

This is from the ECA, not the ESA but what about it is rubbing you the wrong way?

 

Andrew Eisen

 
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Papa MidnightI find it disappointing that, despite the presence of a snopes article and multiple articles countering it, people are still spreading a fake news story about a "SWATter" being sentenced to X (because the number seems to keep changing) years in prison.09/01/2014 - 5:08pm
Papa MidnightAnd resulting in PC gaming continuing to be held back by developer habits09/01/2014 - 5:07pm
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Andrew EisenLikewise, only two of Xbox One's top 12 are exclusive: Dead Rising 3 and Ryse: Son of Rome (if you ignore a PC release later this year).09/01/2014 - 4:34pm
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MaskedPixelantehttp://www.joystiq.com/2014/09/01/beyond-two-souls-ps4-trophies-emerge-directors-cut-reported/ MMM MMM, nothing quire like reheated last gen games to make you appreciate the 400 bucks you spent on a new console.09/01/2014 - 4:24pm
Andrew EisenThat's actually a super depressing thought, that a bunch of retweeters are taking that pic as an illustration of the actual issue instead of an example of a complete misunderstanding of it.09/01/2014 - 4:20pm
Andrew EisenObviously, the picture was created by someone who doesn't understand what the issue actually is (or, possibly, someone trying to satire said misunderstanding).09/01/2014 - 4:10pm
Papa MidnightPeople fear and attack what they do not understand.09/01/2014 - 4:04pm
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SleakerEither people don't understand that what the picture is saying is true, or the picture was created out of a misunderstanding of what sexism is.09/01/2014 - 3:52pm
Sleaker@AE ok yah that's where the kind of confusion I'm getting. Your tweet can be taken to mean two different things.09/01/2014 - 3:51pm
Andrew EisenSleaker - No. No, not even remotely. The pic attached to my tweet was not made by me; it's not a statement I'm making. It's an illustration of the complete misunderstanding of the issue my tweet is referring to.09/01/2014 - 3:13pm
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Papa MidnightAndrew Eisen: Sites like Tumblr make things seem much bigger than they are. A vocal extreme minority start complaining and things go as they do.09/01/2014 - 3:09pm
SleakerAre you trying saying that specific costumes are sexist simply by being included in the game?09/01/2014 - 3:03pm
Andrew EisenSleaker - Seems completely cut and dry to me (of course, I wrote it so that's not surprising). What about it do you find confusing?09/01/2014 - 2:25pm
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Sleaker@AE I don't even know what you're trying to say in that tweet.09/01/2014 - 1:28pm
 

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