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NIMF Announces Game Ratings Summit

The non-profit National Institute on Media and the Family organization has announced the National Video Game Summit, a two-day event organized to address issues surroundi...
The non-profit National Institute on Media and the Family organization has announced the National Video Game Summit, a two-day event organized to address issues surrounding video game ratings and concerns with inappropriate games being made available to children. Scheduled to take place from October 20-21 at The University of Minnesota Continuing Education and Conference Center in Falcon Heights, Minnesota, the summit will be presided over by Dr. David Walsh, president of the National Institute on Media and the Family, as well as Doug Gentile, Iowa State University-Center for the Study of Violence. The NIMF organization itself is known for its strong belief that the ESRB ratings board is not doing a good job in policing the game business, and was significantly active in the controversy over Grand Theft Auto's 'Hot Coffee' mod. In addition, the group also highlights issues annually within its MediaWise Video Game Report Card, in which the group breaks down what it sees as potentially serious issues within the video game industry, and alerts parents regarding what games are and are not appropriate for children. The 2005 edition of the report card gave the ESRB an F grade in "Ratings Accuracy," findings which the ratings organization dismissed, noting at the time that: "NIMF relied on a for-profit company with a vested financial interest in undermining the ESRB (PSVratings, Inc.) to prove this theory." The organizers note that the 'National Video Game Summit' will feature a gathering of more than twenty scholars, educators and experts on media violence and child behavior issues. Attendees of the event will review the ESRB video game rating system, as well as current and emerging trends related the rating of video games. Additionally, those participating in the summit will attempt to determine the validity and accuracy of the current rating system, as well as government regulation and policies concerning education. Ultimately, the National Institute on Media and the Family hopes to emerge from the gathering with a proposed "10-year action agenda based on the summit's conclusions". For more information concerning the National Institute on Media, or the upcoming National Video Game Summit, visit the official website.

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