ARIN6902: Games censorship


Forbidden Fruit: Black Market Spurred on by Games Censorship

One interpretation of the The Forbidden Fruit Theory is that if something is forbidden, its unreachable nature will increase the desire in the person cut off from it to act in opposition to its original classification. In today’s contemporary debate over games classification, this theory is quite pertinent when thinking about the negative effects of censorship in so far as if it is available or not, Refused Classification or Adults Only, users are still going to see it if they truly want to.

So really, what’s the point?

Moreover the way the media deal with the potential harmful effects of violent video games garners more unwanted attention and if we think about it, if they left it alone for a while it might just go away… When we look at it from a local standpoint, the current classification debate in Australia and the absence of an R18+ classification comes to mind. In the case of the Refused Classification label put on the Japanese hentai game Rapelay, the media attention borne out of the game’s sexually violent content and its banning around the globe and in Oz simply makes gamers want to see what it was all about. Eve’s Forbidden Fruit reigns once more…

As Colin Jacobs so aptly stated in the SMH article on Rapelay, “Those who want to will be able to get around the filter, and the content will be quickly copied from site to site,” There is no easy answer to the regulation of contentious games online and the question of border control on the internet is another matter which contributes to this debate (I’ll discuss this in future posts), but essentially, the current ad hoc method deployed by the government to censor games is only spurring on online gamers to acquire it some other way.

What can be done? Any thoughts?

References

Bushman, Brad J.; Stack, Angela D. “Forbidden fruit versus tainted fruit: Effects of warning labels on attraction to television violence” in Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied. Vol 2(3), Sep 1996, 207-226

Moses, A (2010) “‘Rape Simulator’ goes viral amid calls for censorship”Available at http://www.smh.com.au/…/games/rape-simulator-game-goes-viral-amid-calls-for-censorship-20100331-rcpz.html

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