Common Sense Media: 17 Percent of Children Ages 5 to 8 Game Every Day

October 31, 2011 -

Children's Advocacy Group Common Sense Media has released a new survey of parents (conducted by Knowledge Networks) that shows 17 percent of five to eight-year-olds game every day, while 81 percent have played games during their lifetime. That number drops to 51 percent when parents of the entire group (from birth to eight-years-old) were asked the same question.

The survey found that around 74 percent of children's screen time is predominantly spent watching television, compared to 10 percent with video games and 13 percent using a home computer.

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No Shortage of Opinions on Brown v. EMA Decision

June 30, 2011 -

Hey GPers!  Up for some opinions on the recent Supreme Court decision that gave Leland Yee’s violent video game law the Kuribo Boot?

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Common Sense Media: SCOTUS Decision Disappointing for 'All Who Care About Kids'

June 27, 2011 -

As you can probably guess even before you read the official statement from Common Sense Media, they are not pleased with the Supreme Court's ruling on Brown v. EMA today. The children’s advocacy group said in its reaction statement to the decision that they were disappointed and felt that parents had been let down by the court.

But the Supreme Court isn't congress or the president of the United States; in other words they should really only concern themselves with their area expertise - the law as it relates to our constitution. Nevertheless the group that is squarely against the videogame industry voiced its strong opinion that the court erred in its decision. Below is the full statement from Common Sense Media CEO James Steyer:

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Yee Replaced with Common Sense Media CEO for Commonwealth Club Event

March 17, 2011 -

There was supposed to be a debate tonight between California State Senator Leland Yee and George Rose, the Executive VP and Chief Public Policy Officer for Activision Blizzard, but apparently the San Francisco mayoral candidate can't make it. He has been replaced by James Steyer, founder and CEO of Common Sense Media - according to Destructoid. I suppose if you are going to get someone that might fight hard against games other than Yee, then Steyer is a decent replacement. Still gamers would have enjoyed seeing Yee debate Rose.

Destructoid also reports that Grand Theft Childhood author Cheryl K. Olsen has taken an interest in the discussion. She will be in the audience, but will not be taking part in the discussion. The moderator would be smart to include her.. More details on the event here.

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Game Industry Briefs Offer Three Times More Support - Updated

September 17, 2010 -

Update: id Software has filed an amicus brief (PDF) and the Salt Lake Tribune reports that Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff has joined  nine other states that are asking the Supreme Court to strike down the California law. Thanks to all our Shoutbox users (PHX Corp, BearDogg-X, etc.,) for their help today.

Original story: Those supporting the state of California’s attempt to legislate the sale of violent video games to minors got an early start and submitted their amicus briefs on July 19th. Perhaps a bit disconcerting for gamers, those briefs sat unopposed for nearly two months.

But hey, better late than never as today the video game industry saw a flurry of support from all over the country as various people and organizations rushed to meet today’s submission deadline. We’re still waiting for the ECA’s long expected amicus brief but in the meantime, let’s tally up the scores and see which side can brag the most support.

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Common Sense Media and What Constitutes Lobbying

September 14, 2010 -

In an opinion piece by the LA Times blog, Alex Pham tries to determine if Common Sense Media is an advocacy group or a lobbyist firm.

Let us go down the rabbit hole:

"..But there's another aspect to the organization. Common Sense Media has been one of the most zealous voices when it comes to encouraging state legislation limiting the sale of ultra-violent games to minors. Its chief executive, James Steyer as penned numerous letters to state and federal officials, urging them to curb kids' access to 'ultra-graphic violence' depicted in games."

The rest of the article drills down on Common Sense Media's activities from 2005 onward. What is important to note is that the company has been straddling the fence between advocacy and lobbying for years.

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Parents' Group: 72 percent Support Game Bill

September 13, 2010 -

A parents' group cites a recent Zogby poll to back up its claim that adults are firmly against the sale of ultra-violent video games to minors.

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, said a poll of 2100 adults showed that 65 percent of parents are "concerned about the impact of ultra-violent video games on their kids" and 75 percent of parents have a negative view of what the games industry is doing to safeguard minors from violent games, according to an article in Gamasutra.

The group's conclusion is that 72 percent of parents support California's violent video game legislation, which is coming up for consideration in front of the U.S. Supreme Court.

According to Common Sense Media CEO James Steyer:

"What we've learned from this poll is that parents want to be the ones who decide which games their kids play, not the video game industry.

Hal Halpin, head of the Entertainment Consumer Association, said:

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Common Sense Media’s 10 Games to Avoid for the Holidays

December 8, 2009 -

Just in time to disappoint legions of juvenile videogamers for the holidays, Common Sense Media has released a list of 10 games that should be avoided for younger players.

Actually we jest, because the list, entitled 10 Cool Games That Are Uncool for Kids, does a decent job of offering safe alternatives for each title it recommends that parents avoid. The full list, with substitutes in parenthesis, follows:

  • Assassin’s Creed (Mirror’s Edge)
  • Borderlands (Infamous)
  • Brutal Legend (Ghostbusters)
  • Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (Battlefield: Bad Company)
  • Dead Space: Extraction (Deadly Creatures)
  • Dragon Age: Origins (Braid)
  • Grand Theft Auto IV: The Ballad of Gay Tony (Batman: Arkham Asylum)
  • Demon’s Souls (Uncharted 2: Among Thieves)
  • Left 4 Dead 2 (Overlord II)
  • Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars (C.O.P.: The Recruit)
55 comments

Common Sense Media Criticizes Full Frontal Nudity in GTA IV Expansion

February 20, 2009 -

The mainstream is beginning to react to the news that GTA IV add-on The Lost and Damned features a moment of full frontal male nudity.

Watchdog group Common Sense Media has now weighed in on the controversy:

It is even more controversial than its predecessors because this game has full frontal male nudity. The game lets you lead a life of crime as part of a motorcycle gang with plenty of gang violence... relentless foul language, drugs and alcohol, and sexual references...

Families can talk about why Rockstar likes to push the envelope and garner controversy over its games? Why did they have to put full-frontal nudity in the game if it's not integral to the story? Do they correlate media outrage with extraordinary game sales? Do players expect Rockstar to stir up controversy with each of its titles, including the Manhunt and Bully series?...

 

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Andrew EisenIf you do, I hope you can provide some examples of people (again, other than random no-name numbnuts on Twitter) who are genuinely trying to dictate what should and should not be allowed so far as themes, topics, language, plot devices, etc. go.07/01/2015 - 9:43am
MattsworknameI'd go into why I think it's a bigger problem then most realize, but nows not the time really. I'll catch up with everyone later07/01/2015 - 9:42am
Andrew EisenThat's the thing though, rarely is anyone (again, other than random numbnuts on Twitter) attempting to dictate what can and cannot be said or done.07/01/2015 - 9:39am
Andrew Eisen"Don't write rape scenes" is being offered as advice (along with reasons for that advice) not a mandate.07/01/2015 - 9:37am
MattsworknameOh, on that last one andrew I wasn't talking about the article, I was being more general, lately it seems like all the news and media is trying to decide what is and isn't proper to say. Thats what i was refering to.07/01/2015 - 9:37am
Andrew EisenPerhaps you should consider reading the entire article. Despite quotes you can pull from the intro and conclusion, the author isn't arguing that you can't or shouldn't be allowed to cover a certain topic.07/01/2015 - 9:35am
MattsworknameOne of the things I hate right now is that people are trying to be the deciders of what is and isn't proper to be said. It's political correctness to a level that makes me angry.07/01/2015 - 9:29am
Mattsworknamemake them, i just tell peopel that I think what they did sucked. Just cause I dont like what they did, doesn't mean I can tell them "You shouldn't wrtie that" cause thats just another step on the way to telling them "YOU CANT WRITE THAT".07/01/2015 - 9:24am
MattsworknameNo, but you or I aren't the one to tell someone else what they can or cannot do beyond EXTREMELY narrow limits. Telling a person then shouldn't write something or say something. I may hate certain movies or music, doesn't mean I dont' tell peopel not to07/01/2015 - 9:23am
E. Zachary KnightHasbro is taking steps to fix its Dinosaur gender issues. http://io9.com/the-jurassic-world-dinosaur-toys-are-clever-girls-again-171513589607/01/2015 - 9:20am
TechnogeekImagine that level of accuracy, only applied to something that has actually caused physiological and psychological trauma in more cases than just whatever the equivalent of the CD-i Zelda games would be.07/01/2015 - 8:40am
TechnogeekThat's the issue I see as well, E. To put it in terms anyone reading this site will likely understand: you know how any time video games show up on TV, they feature absurdly outdated 3D graphics and/or audio from the Intellivison era?07/01/2015 - 8:40am
InfophileWell, you CAN go to a crowded streetcorner and tell everyone who passes by your social security number and bank account PIN, but you shouldn't. Is that censorship?07/01/2015 - 8:36am
E. Zachary KnightSo if it is going to turn out to be a bad scene, why even bother writing it?07/01/2015 - 8:07am
E. Zachary KnightMatts, Goth, The article, and others I have read making the same conclusion, state that most people fail in their attempts to write rape scenes without being overly offensive or overly incompetent in their attempt.07/01/2015 - 8:07am
Adam802http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Ex-Sen-Leland-Yee-may-be-headed-for-a-plea-deal-6358941.php07/01/2015 - 7:12am
Adam802Possible plea deal in Yee case: http://www.mercurynews.com/crime-courts/ci_28408532/leland-yee-case-plea-deal-appears-likely07/01/2015 - 7:11am
MattsworknameInfo, Im with goth on this, the moment people start saying "You can but you shouldnt" thats a slow slide into censorship07/01/2015 - 6:05am
InfophileIn other words, you stopped when you found out it was arguing for a position you disagreed with, but before you found out why.07/01/2015 - 5:29am
Goth_Skunk"In short, anyone can write a rape scene—but should they? Chances are, the answer is no." And that's where I stopped reading.07/01/2015 - 5:11am
 

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