ESA Finds Plenty Of Supporters In Their Court Battle
Gamers aren't the only ones to offer support for the Entertainment Software Association's US Supreme Court Battle against the state of California and its desire to pass what the ESA deems to be an unconstitutional video game law.
No, support is coming from all sides. The latest on the case involved many supporters from various venues stepping up: a total of 182 "First Amendment experts, national organizations, non-profits, associations, researchers and social-science experts" have filed "friend of the court" amicus briefs in defense of the ESA's position. Said ESA president and CEO Michael Gallagher:
"The depth, diversity, and high quality of briefs submitted strengthens our position before the Court. These briefs are rooted in virtually every form of expression, commerce, social science, and constitutional jurisprudence imaginable. It is our hope that the Court will uphold an unbroken chain of lower court rulings that affirm video games' First Amendment protections, the rights of consumers' access to speech, and that parents--not government--are the best arbiters in determining what is right for their children."
A number of publishers, including Activision Blizzard, id Software, and Microsoft have assisted as well, echoing "the points already outlined by the gaming organization [ESA] in its own filing." Furthermore, no less than 82 members of the scientific and scholastic community argued on behalf of the ESA, saying-
"...the studies [relied upon by the state] are of no help to California…because they document neither a causal connection nor a correlation between the playing of violent video games and violent, aggressive, or antisocial behavior." The briefs also note that California "ignore[d] a weighty body of scholarship, undertaken with established and reliable scientific methodologies, debunking the claim that the video games California seeks to regulate have harmful effects on minors."
Even the United States Chamber of Commerce has made itself known, stating that "industry self-reputation is a highly effective and less restrictive alternative." The Motion Picture Association voiced its concerns, saying that if the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal's decision were overturned, it would have a "chilling effect on the movie business." We've heard this before; it would mean state and local governments could try to pass similar laws and hit movie makers with all sorts of restrictions regarding violent media.
The battle continues!
9/21/2010 10:30:02 AM Ben Dutka