Just a couple days ago, the governor of Oklahoma signed a bill restricting the sale or rental of violent video games to minors, effective November 1st. Today, Louisiana governor Kathleen Blanco signed into law a bill written by outspoken anti-video game opportunist Jack Thompson that would essentially do the same thing. The only difference, the Louisiana bill is effective immediately. That means like, right now.
Game Politics points out the new law borrows language from the Miller Test for obscenity (I know it when I see it) to classify whether or not the level of violence in it is appropriate for children. These are in accordance with "prevailing standards in the adult community" and "contemporary community standards." This is always the problem with these laws: whose standards. I can guarantee you my standards (and I imagine most Joystiq readers) are radically different than Uncle Jack's.
GameDaily BIZ is reporting that the ESA has wasted no time in mounting a lawsuit against the bill. ESA chief Doug Lowenstein said, "Both parents and industry are working together to ensure that video games are purchased responsibly. The Federal Government has found that parents are involved in game purchases more than eight out of ten times. Retailers already have increasingly effective carding programs in place to prevent the sale of Mature or Adult Only games to minors. Legislators know full well that this bill is destined to meet the same fate as other failed efforts to ban video game sales."
St. Louisunconstitutional Indianapolisunconstitutional Washington Stateunconstitutional Illinoisunconstitutional Michiganunconstitutional
- Maryland (doesn't really count, so we'll let 'em have it)
- California (currently under review by Federal District Court Judge Ronald Whyte)
- Minnesota (lawsuit has been filed)
- Oklahoma (lawsuit has been filed)
- Louisiana (lawsuit has been filed)