The US Republican senator Josh Hawley of Missouri has announced that he would be introducing a bill banning manipulative design features in video games with underage audiences, including the sale of loot boxes.
The legislation would prohibit the sale of loot boxes in games targeted at children under the age of 18. Games companies could also face penalties from the Federal Trade Commission if companies if they knowingly allow children to purchase these
Regulators would determine whether a game is targeted at minors by considering similar indicators that they already use under the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). Subject matter and the game's visual content would help regulators
determine who the game is marketed toward. When a game is designed for kids, game developers shouldn't be allowed to monetize addiction.
Pay-to-win mechanics in games targeted at minors would also be outlawed under this legislation. This includes progression systems that encourage people to spend money to advance through a game's content at a faster pace.
CTech giant Tencent has dropped the hugely popular mobile version of PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds (PUBG) in China after it was more or less banned by the government's game censors. It was not quite banned, just not allowed to earn any money.
But not to worry, Tencent has a similar title, Heping Jingying or Elite Force for Peace, with a few tweaks to smooth things with the censors. Charcaters do note beeleed, the minimum age for players has been raised to 16, and most
importantly, it features heroic Chinese forces kicking ass.
Geopolitics might also have contributed to PUBG Mobile's rejection. Tencent licenses the game from South Korean company Bluehole, and Chinese authorities can be hostile to South Korean goods.
For Chinese gamers, though, the disruption should be minimal. Tencent is allowing users to port over characters from PUBG Mobile to Heping Jingying, and one analyst told Reuters that the new game was incredibly similar to the older title.
PlayerUnknown's Battleground is a 2017 South Korea Battle Royale by PUBG Corporation
On 11th APril 2019 Nepal Telecommunication Authority directed all ISPs to ban PlayerUnknown's Battleground, commonly known PUBG, following a court order to ban the game. The court claimed that the game was having a negative effect on the
behaviour and study of children and youths.
But the Supreme Court of Nepal has now issued an interim order to the government to not ban the popular online game.
The court observed that PUBG was basically a game used by the general public for entertainment. Since press freedom and freedom of expression are guaranteed by the constitution, it is necessary to prove that such bans are just, fair and
reasonable, and the actions of the authorities concerned are wise and logical, the bench stated in its order. The SC observed that the ban imposed by Kathmandu District Court on April 10 was not reasonable.
Although most researchers on the subject agree that playing violent video games appears to increase physical aggression, a vocal minority continues to dispute this. To examine issues raised by the counterclaims on this topic, Dartmouth
researchers conducted a meta-analysis of 24 studies from around the world from 2010 to 2017 with over 17,000 participants, ages nine to 19 years-old. The studies all examined how violent video game play affected changes in real-world physical
aggression over time, ranging from three months to four years. Examples of physical aggression included incidents such as hitting someone or being sent to the principal's office for fighting, and were based on self-reports by children, parents,
teachers and peers.
Dartmouth's study examined three specific critiques of the literature on video game play and aggression:
To address claims that previous meta-analyses overestimate the association of violent video game play and aggression because they include "non-serious" measures of aggression, this meta-analysis was limited to studies that measured
reports of overt, physical aggression over time. Despite this more stringent criterion, findings supported the hypothesis that playing violent games is associated with subsequent increases in physical aggression.
To investigate claims that effects are often inflated because many studies do not take into account other variables predictive of aggressive behavior, Dartmouth researchers compared analyses that included or did not include information on such
variables and found that taking these data into account had only a minor effect on the size of the observed relation between violent video game play and aggression.
To evaluate claims that the estimated effect of violent game play on aggression is inflated because of a bias against publishing studies that fail to find a relation of violent game play and aggression, Dartmouth researchers conducted a variety
of different tests and found no evidence of publication bias.
In addition to providing evidence that violent video game play is associated with increased aggression over time, the study also reports that this effect appears to be significantly different for various ethnic groups: the largest effect was
observed among white participants, with some effect noted among Asians and no effect observed among Hispanics. Although speculative, the authors suggest that this effect may reflect a greater emphasis on maintaining empathy toward victims of
aggression among Eastern and Hispanic cultures in contrast to an emphasis on "rugged individualism" in Western cultures.
Lead author Jay G. Hull , the Dartmouth Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences, said:
Although no single research project is definitive, our research aims to provide the most current and compelling responses to key criticisms on this topic. Based on our findings, we feel it is clear that violent video game play is associated with
subsequent increases in physical aggression.
Co-author James D. Sargent, the Scott M. and Lisa G. Stuart Professor of Pediatric Oncology said:
The most notable critic of the violent video game aggression literature conducted studies in primarily Hispanic populations and found no evidence of this association. If all of my studies showed null findings, I too, would be skeptical. I hope
our findings prompt skeptics to reevaluate their position, especially since some of our other research indicates that violent video game play may increase deviance with implications for multiple risk behaviors.
There has been a bit of a bottleneck for gaming in China as the responsibility for games censorship moved from a government organisati to a Communist Party propaganda unit.
As the new organisations starts to work out its new remit it is hardly surprising that new censorship rules would appear. And now the new game censor has announced three new game themes that are now banned:
gambling games such as Mahjong and Poker
games that deal with the country's imperial history
games featuring corpses and blood--of any color.
Other initiatives include requesting publishers to change how their titles promote Chinese values and culture so that if they become popular around the world, they'll portray the country in a favorable light.
The new regulations also require developers and publishers to divulge more information about a given title including detailed scripts, screenshots, as well as what features are being included to help curb gameplay addiction and over-spending by
the country's younger population.
PlayerUnknown's Battleground is a 2017 South Korea Battle Royale by PUBG Corporation
Nepal Telecommunication Authority has directed all the country's ISPs to ban PlayerUnknown's Battleground, commonly known PUBG, a popular multiplayer internet game.
The Metropolitan Crime Division had filed a Public Interest Litigation at the Kathmandu District Court seeking permission to ban PUBG claiming that the game was having a negative effect on the behaviour and study of children and youths. The
district court gave permission to ban PUBG the same day.
Senior Superintendent of Police Dhiraj Pratap Singh, chief of the Metropolitan Crime Division said:
We received a number of complaints from parents, schools and school associations regarding the effect of the game on children. We also held discussions with psychiatrists before requesting the Kathmandu District Court for permission to ban the
Iraq's cultural parliamentary committee has submitted a draft on April 13th, 2019 suggesting to ban PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds. The draft proposal would have to go through a draft review by parliamentary speaker Mohammed Al Halbousi.
The head of the culture committee, Sameaa Gullab, commented:
The committee is concerned about the obsession over these electronic games that ignite violence among children and youth. Its influence has spread rapidly among Iraq's society. We are proposing to parliament to block and ban all games that
threaten social security, morality, education and all segments of Iraqi society.
Iraqi media reported incidents of suicide and divorce related to the games during the last year. Local media reporting on the craze has claimed it has led to nearly 40,000 divorces worldwide and more than 20 cases in Iraq.
The parliamentary censorship call also cites the suicide game Blue Whale , which has been a problem for some regions for quite some time.
Iraq's parliament has voted to ban the popular battle royale games Fortnite and Playerunknown's Battlegrounds because of their supposed detrimental influence on the population.
A Reuters report says the ban was put into place due to the negative effects caused by some electronic games on the health, culture, and security of Iraqi society, including societal and moral threats to children and youth.
Reaction to the ban was widely negative, according to the report, but not because people are angry that they can't play Fortnite. They may be, but the real issue is that Iraqis apparently see the ban as a emblematic of the government's misplaced
priorities: While Iraq continues to struggle with sectarian violence, inadequate infrastructure, and political instability, the country's parliament has only managed to pass one piece of legislation since sitting in September 2018.