In May 2004, Senators Sam Brownback (R-Kansas), Joe Lieberman (D-Connecticut), and Hillary Clinton (D-New York), introduced the Children and Media Research Advancement Act to study the effects of various forms of media, including movies, music, television, and video games, upon children.
Now, a counterpart to the bill bearing the same name, and of some relevance to game professionals in light of controversy about video games and their effect on juveniles, has been introduced into the House of Representatives by Reps. Edward J Markey (D-Massachusetts), Melissa Hart (R-Pennsylvania), Joe Baca (D-California), and Harold Ford Jr. (D-TN). However, the bill is early in its life and is yet to be voted on in any form.
"The advent of new technologies, such as cell phones, video games and audio playback devices present new and wide-ranging challenges in understanding how different forms of media influence our children," said Rep. Hart. "This legislation will provide a more complete picture and allow us to draw from comprehensive research as we try to understand both the positive and negative impact media is having on our children."
The program created under CAMRA would set up a dedicated study to the effects of media upon children under the auspices of the Center for Disease Control. The move would tie together various individual media research programs under several different government offices to unify the research efforts under one authority.
"This funding will help us better understand the effects images of violence and sex have on the shaping of our children's development," said Rep. Ford. "The media, in all its forms, is a powerful and necessary force in our society. Passage of this legislation will be viewed as a victory for children, parents and the media."