Insomniac boss rallies against censorship

Ted Price calls on gaming media to tackle US bill

Insomniac boss Ted Price has called on the world's gaming media to do more to drum up interest in a proposed law in the US - which would make it illegal to sell games with content "inappropriate" for minors to anyone under 18.

Writing on his blog yesterday, Price took issue with gaming sites' coverage of an interview he conducted with EGM (more on that through here) - and encouraged them to instead turn their attention to fighting the bill.


He wrote:

' Unfortunately for those of us who develop games, our right to express ourselves is hanging in the balance. If you're not aware of it, today there is a California law sitting at the US Supreme Court which, if upheld, could completely change the game business. The law would make it illegal to sell games with content "inappropriate" for minors to anyone under 18. The law would ignore ESRB ratings and use completely arbitrary and vague definitions to describe what is allowed and isn't allowed. Ultimately games would be treated as restricted substances - similar to cigarettes, alcohol and drugs.

It's very important to note that no other form of media has to contend with this kind of restriction. It's not illegal for those under 17 to attend a R rated movie, to read a Stephen King book or to listen to Howard Stern. But if the Supreme Court rules against the game industry, it could be illegal for someone under 18 to buy Resistance if the game is deemed inappropriate for minors under the new law. And as content creators, if there is a chance that our games will appear in an "Adults Only" section of game stores we will have to restrict what we create to avoid going out of business. To me such a situation is tantamount to government censorship.

If this law is upheld it could have a ripple effect across all other forms of media. Those who have sought to censor films, television, books, talk radio, and music will now have precedent to renew their fight against freedom of expression. In other words, this case is a very, very big deal.'