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February 15, 2006
1 Min Read
In one of the most unlikely attacks yet against the Grand Theft Auto franchise, organizers behind the Sex Workers Outreach Project USA (SWOP-USA) have called for consumers to boycott the games. A statement on the organization’s website indicates that the group is adamantly opposed to “any and all forms of censorship” but that as concerned parents they wish to inform other parents of the potential danger extremely violent video games pose to children. The statement goes on to claim that “Grand Theft Auto accrues points to players for the depiction of the rape and murder of prostitutes” – which is demonstrably not the case. Concerned parents and citizens are then encouraged to read “pertinent research regarding child development and interactive representations of violence”, with the website summarizing a report by David Walsh, Ph.D. for the National Institute on Media and the Family in 2001. The comment particularly focuses on GTA's unsuitability for children, which is ostensibly not a point of issue for publisher Rockstar, given the Mature rating given to the game, concluding: "As concerned parents ourselves, we wish to inform other parents of the potential danger extremely violent video games pose to children. And in the interest of furthering sex worker’s human and civil rights to life and personal safety, we object to any media which represents sex workers as legitimate targets of violence, rape and murder."
About the Author(s)
David Jenkins ([email protected]) is a freelance writer and journalist working in the UK. As well as being a regular news contributor to Gamasutra.com, he also writes for newsstand magazines Cube, Games TM and Edge, in addition to working for companies including BBC Worldwide, Disney, Amazon and Telewest.
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