X-Play Investigates: The Supreme Court

Posted: November 1, 2010
X-Play Investigates: The Supreme Court
Tomorrow the Supreme Court begins a landmark case involving video games. At issue is Arnold Schwarzenegger's bill that would restrict the sale of games, classifying their violence as pornographic. Here, Adam Sessler investigates.

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  • DarkSpyda04

    The whole idea that violent videogames should be locked away in Davy Jones locker bothers me and I'm nineteen. The reason it bothers me is because it will affect the gaming industry, too. Developers could either lose sales or be forced to replace blood with vibrant flowers. I fear for the worst. Look at reality, now. If someone gets shot in the face, are there flowers? Only at thier funeral, there are. Is the government trying to teach children that weapons are harmless toys? Some like to say that video games are uneducational, but I say the opposite.

    Posted: November 26, 2010 12:06 AM
  • DazrilCaidoz

    I get your point about all of this and why it is at the supreme court and agree with nearly everyone that is with and against this ordeal and it is something that the ESRB and game stores need to be inforcing better but in the end it is......... THE PARENTS RESPONSABILITY WHAT IS GOING ON WITH THIER KIDS AND WHAT THEY ARE DOING NO ONE ELSE IF THIS GOES THROUGH ITS ONE MORE THING THE PARENTS GET OFF OF NOT HAVING TO DO AND CURRUPTING OUR WORLD OF UNWATCHED KIDS UNDER THE AGE OF 18 AND IT SEEMS IT IS EASIER TO BLAME EVERYTHING ELSE THAN THE PARENTS FOR NOT RESEARCHING AND BEING AWARE.

    For the record I have seen on several occasions kids (around 11-12 years) buying games they shouldn't like GTA and God of War with out a parent (so there is the problem with some game stores allowing little ones buy these games and part to blame) and some that the parents are there and ask if the kids should play the game or not and are told it all depends on if they want Timmy, Jimmy or little Billy to be exposed to such violence and such when they probly have cable and watch worse things last night "late at night" so who do you think is responsable the games or parents?

    Posted: November 3, 2010 8:33 AM
  • neomalysys

    They did this before with movies but it was eventually overturned on first amendment grounds.

    Posted: November 2, 2010 4:37 PM
  • RelicCastle

    What does preventing children under 18 years old from playing M rated games have to do with restricting ultra violent games from being produced for adults that are ment to be played for adults over 18 years old have to do with freedom of speech??????? Obviously these ultra violent games are not ment for children under 18 years old,so why in the world would these producers have any worry to produce games for over 18 years old crowd when the games are not ment for 18 years or under old crowd.Obviously if there was a restriction for 18 years old or younger the children from playing ultra violent games that would not prevent games being produced of the ultra violent games from beimg made for the 18 years old or over crowd,these producers should not be catering to the 18 years or under crowd obviously.... so these producers can still cater to the ultra violent games for the 18 years and older crowd....obviously....Why do you think there is a 21 years old law for drinking!!!! Why do you think there is a law for 18 years old for smoking!!!! Why do you thing there is a R rated for 18 years old and older to watch movies....would you say that freedom of speech is being trampled upon because of these laws???? So whats the difference and whats the big deal of having a law to restrict childern from ultra violence?????? THE PRODUCERS WOULD STILL BE ABLE TO MAKE GAMES OF THE ULTRA VIOLENT GAMES FOR 18 YEARS OLD AND OLDER CROWD AND STILL MAKE THE GAMES THEY LOVE TO MAKE FOR THE OVER 18 YEARS OLD CROWD AND JUST NOT SOLD TO THE 18 YEARS OLD AND UNDER CROWD....BIG DEAL...YOU WOULD AND SHOULD NOT CATER TO CHILDREN OF THE VIOLENT NATURE TO CHILDREN....OBVIOUSLY....

    Posted: November 2, 2010 4:32 PM
  • Steve007101

    Excellent video on the issue except for one thing, it could have made it more clear that this new law is about the government stepping in and deciding what is inappropriate as opposed to the ESRB, and they'd do it with a much broader definition of "inappropriate" than the ESRB, and would result in government restricted sales of video games that don't warrant it except by liberty of the fact that video games are the new medium and the easy political target.

    I'm fairly confident the Supreme court will shoot the law down as it clearly is unconstitutional.

    Posted: November 2, 2010 2:42 PM
  • urbanmana141

    I really do'nt like this whole case in general, I agree with joker41995. I'm 17 now and I played violent games at the age of 10. I remember playing GTA 3 and Vice City when they first came out, but you didnt see me going around cursing, stealing cars, beating and shooting people. I came out just fine. This whole situation doesnt have to do with Religion, just stupidity, and those who just cant admit that they bought these games for their children and wonder why they are experiencing these problems. That really has nothing to do with it. Parents need to spend more time with their kids, its a sign that your kid needs attention. I'm just saying this because it's confusing most of us who play games or other things to do that will keep us away from violence. When I was young and had a NES and SEGA at my disposal, sure it was fun for hours, but when you wanted to spen time with my parents what did i do? went downstairs and made a mess until they got the picture. I know many of you may agree or disagree with me, but this topic has been on my mind for a really long time. I can take it or leave it, but at the end of the day, I would like to sit down and have something I can play to relax and forget about this world of drama and crisis.

    Posted: November 2, 2010 10:49 AM
  • DukeOfDownTown

    With my first video game system being the SNES the idea of video games being considered free speech sounds kind of weird to me still but the industry has changed from the one I originally knew as a kid, within the past decade they have become a true art form. One that rivals (and in many ways exceeds) cinema. They're now capable of mature social commentary and it s wrong to protect the artistic integrity of the video game industry any differently than we would for the movie industry. I mean, how would you react if scenes needed to be left on the cutting room floor for being too graphic, intense, or feeling too real for American cinema?... You'd most likely have a strong reaction and feel as though your experience of that movie has suffered and so has the artistry as a whole, you may also feel as though the moral compass of society may be negatively affected. I d personally feel like if a similar law were made for the film industry 40 years ago we would have lost a majority of the most memorable scenes filmed within the past 40 years.

    The same thing goes for video games; many potential deeply meaningful experiences that you could have in future video games may be lost. Unfortunately most of society doesn't have this built in cognitive kneejerk reaction defense for video games like we do for movies.

    Sure you could have a decently programmed rated "T" war game but it would be less socially responsible than a rated "M" war game. Because the "M" lets you see some of the horrors of war. It teaches you to think before you pull the trigger due to fear that you might accidently shoot a member of your own team or an innocent person; in a "T" shooter you can't commit friendly fire so shooting is consequence free. Also, in a rated "M" war game you see legs and arms getting blown off, puddles of blood on the ground and marking up the wall, pain as if the air was filled with it, grown men calling for their ma ma. In a "T" rated shooter you see very little blood, no pain, pretty clean deaths, only the "bad guys" die unscriptedely.

    The true difference is that the title that's rated "M" lets you see the ugly stuff, and experience some of the things that make war such a terrible thing. If the games really good it weighs on you a bit and by the end all you really want is peace. The rated "T" game displays war as something fun and light; it makes you feel like something that would be fun and exciting to do instead of something that you'd like to avoid. So if I was a parent, of let's say a 13-14 year old and up, I'd most likely encourage them to skip the game that's rated "T" and encourage them to play the rated "M" game instead because it tends to be a little more responsible, or at least a little more honest about the subject matter it s presenting.

    Posted: November 2, 2010 10:12 AM
  • thePcgamer

    I would go to DC today, but because of the rally, i got sick so i'm stuck at home. I've already shared my opinion in a previous post so..yeah

    Posted: November 2, 2010 8:13 AM
  • ichigo375

    screw the government i say we go to war if this thing passes, all with me comment on it, if not here then look for me on myyearbook, i'm dakota thomas, look for the joker picture.

    Posted: November 2, 2010 6:43 AM
  • ichigo375

    ok i do agree some what with it, the games that strickly deal with sex and thats all should have the little sicker saying "you must be 18 to buy." but come on people, if this goes into affect then theres not going to be any games left, minus the one's you've already own but, i personally can name most of the top games now that will be exiled. games such as Street Fighter 4, for the games only perpose is to fight but come on it is in the name people, Halo Reach, and as a matter of fact any war game, Fall Out: New Vegas, i guess this also would fall under war game in there catergory, seeing as they ouviously don't play video games, let's see, there's Fable 3, shooting and killing, none of the GTA's, must i say why, and the last one that comes to mind, right off the top of my head, Star Wars: The Force Unleashed 2, even though it is half a game, and hopefully there will be a 3 to balance the story they will block it before you get the chance to follow this part of the story.

    Posted: November 2, 2010 6:21 AM
  • Darkpuppy

    You know recently we had an ad campaign on in Australia about how taking the labeling off cigarette packets would retailers, this was sponsored by the Retailers Association of Australia, now if you looked a little deeper you go and find out that this "Association" is actually a cover advertising agency paid by the cigarette company. What am I trying to say??? Just make sure you have a look at who is spouting all your doom and gloom and fear mongering, do just listed to the news/presenters or guests, find it out for yourself... the doom and gloom a lot of news presents is to cover for the industry itself and comes down to the dollar and the basic simple fact that gaming companies don't want anything that might hurt their sales a little so they PAY! people to fear monger....

    Posted: November 2, 2010 5:40 AM
  • DarkN'Stuff

    I like how they push for it "for the kids", but they completely ignore the fact that "IT CAN LIMIT WHAT WE CAN CREATE!". How f*ed up is that, and whose to say that it'll stop here. What if they move on to censoring the internet, restricting what we can and can't watch.

    Even if the case rules in California favor, im not stopping! Im going to fight this big government BS that everyone seems to favor now days because this is what it gets us!

    Posted: November 1, 2010 10:42 PM
  • DarkN'Stuff

    I like how they push for it "for the kids", but they completely ignore the fact that "IT CAN LIMIT WHAT WE CAN CREATE!". How f*ed up is that, and whose to say that it'll stop here. What if they move on to censoring the internet, restricting what we can and can't watch.

    Even if the case rules in California favor, im not stopping! Im going to fight this big government BS that everyone seems to favor now days because this is what it gets us!

    Posted: November 1, 2010 10:40 PM
  • sephirothcloud

    In The end Video Games will prevail like Books, Comics, Manga and Movies. The government trying to take full control on games shows the corrupted power it tries to do all the time. Plus is it possible for G4 to to stream this event on the site because of Direct TV I can't see it live!

    Posted: November 1, 2010 10:04 PM
  • Boombox1818

    If anyone has ever watched Penn & Tellers BS on Showtime you may know that at one point they covered violent video games. They took a child, around the age of 11 or 12, who plays violent video games such as Killzone and Call Of Duty, to a gun range and had him fire a REAL gun I believe it was a .22 rifle. He fired the gun once and only once. After that event he was upset and crying for having fired the gun. That alone should prove that there IS NO correlation between violent games and violent deeds.

    On top of that the childs MOTHER monitored the games he was playing. Meaning that the PARENTS and NOT the government should monitor what their children are playing.

    Posted: November 1, 2010 9:09 PM
  • willie92444

    This is something we as a people cannot stand for. We must not allow the goverment reach into what we can fun. Violent video games are not bad, they allow us to do what is fun and something we know we cannot do in real life. Others like me love it for it can releave stress. Knowing you can go home and beat people in games such as gears of war, madern warfare, bad company, etc. With this we can live like no others having extra lives when in life we only have one. Games allow us to be who we are weither it is in private or public. If Vvg's are allowed to have an 18 or over rating we can still have them. Our parents can buy them, we will always have them. But even games that are not rated M but T and yet are treated the same way because they have violent content in it is like saying photos are videos or in crime selling drugs is the same as a DUI. they are different even if they have some of the same things, but it is who has more of a certain thing that makes it different and gives it the rating that it has been given. Who is it to say that they will stop here? What if they go further into the game ratings saying teen should be 18 because of use of drugs, achahol or language. What if they go to movies and say pg-13 should be rated R because it has violent content. You cannot say something when you don't know what you're talking about to begin with. If they saw just one game ore were surrounded by these violent games they only saw that. they didn't go into detail as to why they got their rating even though they did have some of the same content. We are America where our freedom is frowned apon. The moment we let the Gov. make the desisions we should have a say in, because it affects us, we lose are freedom all together. We have our right taken away to make our choices based on our belifes and our views. I speak for myself but I hope others see what I write. We cannot let this thing happen or what we fight for is lost. The freedom our soldiers firght for means less because they lost some entertainment they loved.

    Posted: November 1, 2010 8:27 PM
  • ossiss

    this is all just so ridiculous. how the hell can they sit there and justify any of this? id honestly like to know exactly what they're thinking.

    on a side note, i think that old terminator face there is just pissed that he's never been in a good game.

    Posted: November 1, 2010 7:21 PM
  • Green With Evil

    All of this started over a mod in a GTA game 6 years ago that didn't do anything that you couldn't see in a PG13 movie. Maybe Arnold forgot about the dozens of R-rated movies that he has made over the past 30+ years. Its not like any little kids have been imitating those movies at all. Its not like he has changed his ways at all, he did appear in The Expendables this summer which featured more violence than most video games have even shown.

    Posted: November 1, 2010 6:07 PM
  • g4fan247

    I live about 35 miles south of D.C. in Virginia but I won't be able to go because I have to go to work tomorrow.:( I will be watching coverage on AOTS after work.

    Posted: November 1, 2010 6:02 PM
  • JRK87

    Yeah, when I was their age I understood that there were things I should or should not do. I scrupled myself. If I did things beyond my maturity, I was mature in approaching it. I'm not special, either, so I'd expect there are plenty of kids out there with good heads on their shoulders -- and good parents too, if they're lucky enough.

    Instead of wasting all this time and manpower on censoring video games, why not pass a law making it mandatory for every kid -- and I mean EVERY kid -- in a government's jurisdiction to receive acceptable safe sex / health education, or doing something prudent like making it mandatory (and EASY) for them to get condoms at regular intervals? That would solve a boat load of problems there, that are of more immediate concern than distributed content MAYBE affecting what kids MIGHT do at some UNFORSEEN time. This isn't Minority Report, or some other sci-fi drama... but we're turning the 21st century into one.

    Posted: November 1, 2010 5:39 PM