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Australian Event To Debate Game Classification

Organizers from Australian gaming event group Dissecta have announced plans to host a conference named “Classification: Is the Time for Talk Over?” to discuss concerns su...
Organizers from Australian gaming event group Dissecta have announced plans to host a conference named “Classification: Is the Time for Talk Over?” to discuss concerns surrounding the Australian video games classification system. The event is due to take place on Tuesday March 28th at the Australian Games Innovation Centre in Melbourne. Speakers scheduled for the event include Chris Hanlon, CEO of the Interactive Entertainment Association of Australia (IEAA), Tom Crago, vice president of the Game Developers Association of Australia (GDAA) and Drew Taylor, editor of Jump Button magazine. The discussion will aim to provide an overview of current efforts by the Australian video games industry to have the ratings system overhauled, with input from business leaders, developers and retailers. Unlike the U.S. voluntary system, video game classification in Australia is carried out by government body the Australian Office of Film & Literature Classification. The system is particularly inflexible since the maximum rating that can be given to a game under Australian law is MA15+, with the MA18+ available to films not imposable, and thus a number of games being banned entirely. A number of high profile titles have suffered as a result, including Marc Ecko’s Getting Up: Contents Under Pressure, 50 Cent: Bulletproof, Grand Theft Auto, Leisure Suit Larry: Magnum Cum Laude and Narc. Adding a MA18+ rating has been under discussion for a number of years now, most recently by the provincial government of Victoria, but as of yet no action has been taken. Further details of the Dissecta event can be found at the organization’s official website.

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