Most UK parents concerned about video games content

February 27th, 2009 - 2:01 pm ICT by ANI  

London, February 27 (ANI): The British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) has found in a survey that almost three quarters of parents are worried about the content of video games, and want that the gaming industry be regulated independently.
Conducted by YouGov on behalf of the BBFC, the survey revealed that most parents in the UK thought that video games should be given the same kind of age classifications as films are granted, and an independent body should be created for the purpose.
The surveyors found that about 80 per cent of the people were concerned that video games could affect the behaviour of some children, while 77 per cent said that game ratings should reflect the concerns of parents.
The survey, which had 2,143 adults questioned, also found that 82 per cent of parents believed it would be helpful if video games used the same age ratings systems as films and DVDs.
It comes as the Government considers the findings of the Byron Review, a paper written by parenting expert and psychologist Tanya Byron, into the steps that need to be taken to safeguard children in the digital age.
The Byron Review recommends that video games designed for people aged 12 and over, regardless of content, should be reviewed by the BBFC for classification prior to release.
This poll clearly shows parents support a regulatory system for games that is independent of the industry and UK based, reflecting UK sensibilities and sensitivities, the Telegraph quoted David Cooke, director of the BBFC said, as saying.
The BBFC has been classifying games for over 20 years and our decisions reflect the views of the public. Our classification systems and symbols are known and trusted by the public and in a converging media world they want to know what their children are playing as well as watching, he added.
Mike Rawlinson, director-general of Elspa, the body that represents the video games industry, said that he understood the concerns raised by the BBFC about protecting children.
“UK parents need a system for videogames age classification that is built with the protection of the new generation of children in mind, and as such, delivers a robust system that works as well for games bought in-store as played online, he said. (ANI)

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