They want a 'violent video games linked to aggressive behaviour' sticker. Baca claims the games industry has "repeatedly failed" to live up to their responsibilities over warnings.
The bill proposes that any title given an EC (Early Childhood) rating by the ESRB should have the 'health warning label' even if no virtual violence is featured in it.
The pair of Republicans argue in their bill that sustained playing of violent games has a long-lasting impact on children. Once again science takes a back seat it seems as there is still no unified consensus on the subject of whether aggressive behaviour rises as a result of playing violent video games.
"The video game industry has a responsibility to parents, families and to consumers - to inform them of the potentially damaging content that is often found in their products. They have repeatedly failed to live up to this responsibility," said Californian congressmen Joe Baca.
"Just as we warn smokers of the health consequences of tobacco, we should warn parents - and children - about the growing scientific evidence demonstrating a relationship between violent video games and violent behavior. As a parent and grandparent, I think it is important people know everything they can about the extremely violent nature of some of these games," added Virginian congressmen Frank Wolf.
To be clear: there is NO growing scientific evidence - as Wolf suggests - as many leading psychologists are divided on the subject. They do tend to agree that our mood is altered but then that's true of any visual and auditory stimulus.
What they want: "WARNING: Exposure to violent video games has been linked to aggressive behavior."
I imagine cars are a far greater stimulant of aggressive behaviour. How many are killed a day either as a result of negligence or road rage? Should cars have massive 'health labels' printed on them? What about church? They can be pretty inciting when they wanna be... 'WARNING: Exposure to Church has been linked to self-righteousness.'
Is it really that hard to read an ESRB rating sticker in the United States?
US Republicans want tobacco-style labels for games, 'links with aggression'
21 March 2012 | By Simon Priest