South Australian Attorney General John Rau has requested that The Classification Review Board reconsider the rating of twelve MA15 rated games, despite none of the titles receiving any complaints from the public. The Attorney General raised concerns about Australia’s rating system in September, pointing out several titles that had received MA15 ratings in Australia but higher, adult ratings in Europe and the United States. Australia does have an adult R18+ rating, and Rau argues that it should be applied more stringently.
The Attorney General has imposed the review after consultation with the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM), which brought the games to Rau’s attention in September. The Interactive Games and Entertainment Association released a statement calling the review “costly and unwarranted”, noting that the Attorney General and ACCM had not accounted for inherent differences between the ratings systems of Australia and other countries, which could easily result in games being rated differently overseas.
Australia’s rating system is government led, whilst the United States and European rating systems being used as a benchmark by Rau are administered by the video game industry. Ron Curry, CEO of the IGEA, said, “Not only have these games already been examined against stringent guidelines, we also haven’t heard of any formal complaints made by parents or adults who think the video games are wrongly classified. The review is an unwarranted and costly exercise to satisfy a vocal yet unrepresentative minority,”
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