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Hey folks! Here is a matter that is near and dear to my heart. I've always been a gamer at heart and, like many of you, I can always think back and recall the great memories that have included video games. I grew up with the conception and most evolving era in video gaming. At every age, I fondly recall the game that meant the most to me, the games that I connected with the most. Today, video games are part of our lifestyles and, in many cases, are a way of staying connected with friends around the world. I would not want anyone telling me which games I can buy or play. I believe games should have ratings for different maturity levels (like movies and TV shows) but the ultimate choice of which games I play or let my kids play should be mine.

For nearly two decades, elected officials have tried to regulate which video games you can buy, rent and play. Every single time they’ve passed a law, the federal courts have struck it down as unconstitutional. But this may change this fall. It's important to make our voices heard and to spread the word to our friends, family and fellow gamers.

Show your support for free speech and the First Amendment by signing The Gamer Petition. Your signature will be added to the ECA's amicus brief that will be filed with the Supreme Court in Schwarzenegger v. EMA.

If you’re an American gamer, and you care about gaming and your rights, stand up and be counted. Take a moment to help get the word out about this petition and encourage everyone you know to sign on at The ECA's website .

The Entertainment Consumers Association (ECA) is the non-profit membership organization that represents consumers of interactive entertainment in the US and Canada. The association was founded to give gamers a collective voice with which to communicate their concerns, address their issues and focus their advocacy efforts. As such, the ECA is committed to a host of public policy efforts, empowering and enabling the membership to effect change.

I am a gamer, my tag is "WASDted", I enjoy my rights and I signed the petition today.

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idiot online petitions. Complete waste of time
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Last Post by jwenting
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Not only do online petitions never work (and rightly so, there's no way in hell to know if the people "signing" are real and not some bot being used to generate millions of "signatures", but I fully agree with banning kids from playing gory games.
Just as I fully agree with banning kids from watching gory movies and porn.

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this is not just another online petition. there is a real non-profit org behind it and the names will be included in the legal brief
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I agree that kids shouldn't be playing inappropriate games and watching inappropriate film, but they're trying to make the game industry the only entertainment medium that is enforced by governmental laws. The ESRB is currently doing all it needs to in order to prevent kids from playing these games by having an incredibly easy to understand rating system. The government has no need whatsoever to step in on this issue, but the PARENTS need to step up and actually raise their kids, rather than letting media raise them.

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@Sodabread exactly! We should decide what movies and games we and our kids should not be exposed to. If a person is uncomfortable with a gory game they shouldn't play it. Parents should step up, read the ESRB rating and make a responsible decision for their children based on their age. It is as simple as that. We don't need the government stepping in and banning games for us.

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Not only do online petitions never work (and rightly so, there's no way in hell to know if the people "signing" are real and not some bot being used to generate millions of "signatures", but I fully agree with banning kids from playing gory games.
Just as I fully agree with banning kids from watching gory movies and porn.

I would disagree that online petitions do not work. Recently in australia we had a mix online and real life petition that involved the introduction of an internet filter from australia.

This internet filter was brought forward by stephen conroy and he was very sure of getting it through. After over 200,000 signatures online and about 60,000 offline the legislators started thinking about the fact that a lot of them could possibly lose their seats in parliament over one small internet filter that could easily be bypassed and not effective..

so in the end the internet protest and this legislation is hanging by a thread and is not expected to be passed any time soon if at all. There are numerous other massive pieces of legislation that the Australian parliament would rather spend their time.

EDIT: Also just recently thousands of gamers signed a petition to allow R rated (18 years and older) video games into australia, the current rating only goes up to MA-15+ so after that petition is has become a much bigger issue and serious debate has started about it getting changed.

Edited by Paul Thompson: n/a

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No, the online part did nothing (except maybe raise awareness).

And with the vast majority of online "petitions" being utterly nonsensical ("sign here to stop hunger in Africa" comes to mind, "give your email address to make Microsoft keep selling Windows XP", and a bazillion like it) those "targetted" have no business paying any attention to them, even if the accuracy of the "signatures" as being real people (and only one per person) could be in any way established.

In fact paper petitions in part suffer from the same flaw, but are easier to debunk if deliberately fraudulent on a large scale.
For example there was one here in the 1980s to "ban the bomb", trying to force the government to declare the country a nuclear free zone (despite NATO treaty obligations, but then it had been started by an offshoot of the communist party).
They "collected" over a million signatures, except some 80% of those were fake. Hundreds having the exact same handwriting, signatures made in the name of pets and toddlers, non-existent persons, etc. etc.
The fraud there was so obvious even the press (who had been extremely sympathetic, as they are to any leftist idea) had to report on it.

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Is this really about kids being banned from playing games? Or is it about regulating which games can and cannot be sold in the U.S.? I could care less what games kids can buy. And their parents can buy the games for them, if they so choose.

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No, the online part did nothing (except maybe raise awareness).

Im sorry... where do you get that idea?? And the whole idea of a petition in some ways is to get people talking, by having 200,000 people writing online it means that the media will report about it, therefore educating people about the issue if they had not already known about it.

So first of all, its hard to just say "It did nothing" and second, it does something, raising awareness is something.

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It did nothing in that it did not cause anyone in a position of power to change their opinion.
Having a floppy disk full of "e-signatures" from people saying that "yes, we want you to stop world hunger" isn't going to get anyone sit down and take notice because (as I pointed out) they know full well that 99.999% at least of those signatures are bogus (and of course pretty much any "online petition" is completely idiotic in scope and target, even if maybe that particular one wasn't).

So the "petition" didn't have the effect you claim, the publicity that came after it did. Politicians are extremely sensitive to bad press, don't give a sh*t about actual people and their opinions unless they have a printing press or TV station.

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the publicity that came after it did. Politicians are extremely sensitive to bad press, don't give a sh*t about actual people and their opinions unless they have a printing press or TV station.

Exactly thats the beauty of media. One main point of a petition is to get people talking. If it got the media talking then it did its job. I agree, people will probably not take the number that seriously in politics, but see media just LOVE to make headlines so "200,000 sign a petition" is a pretty good one, even if its an online petition and some may be fake, thats probably not going to matter to them. From that would come public discussion due to the media, therefore causing people to question their politicians, therefore perhaps causing a change in policy.

But i do agree that those silly "change world poverty/hunger/inequality" ones are fairly pointless, im more talking about minor policy change that can be done by a specific government.

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Even there... As there's no way to determine whether any of the "signatures" are real, there's no way to determine whether anyone actually signed it so it shouldn't be listened to.

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But i do agree that those silly "change world poverty/hunger/inequality" ones are fairly pointless, im more talking about minor policy change that can be done by a specific government.

Agreed. Random petitions about random subjects like "stop world hunger" are pointless and do little if only to unite a small group of people about a cause. BUT, this is different, The ECA is asking people to sign a petition (and by the way you are asked to fill in your full name and address) so they can compile a list of real people with real opinions about a legal issue that is being discussed for us. To the judge or whoever is examining this case these names represent people with interest in this matter. This is actionable. By contrast, put your name on a list to "end world hunger" and who do you expect will do what about it and when and how and with what authority?

Edited by WASDted: n/a

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"(and by the way you are asked to fill in your full name and address) "

Doesn't matter.
Impossible to verify all those names and addresses, so you can just have a piece of software (or a human brain) make up a few million.
Happens a lot, makes pretty much all "petitions" impossible to verify as an instrument of opinion polling.

Heck, if the US can't even prevent millions of fraudulent voter registrations leading to millions of votes by people that don't exist (or exist but don't have a right to vote), how is someone going to decide the validity of some list of addresses and names that stretch the entire globe?

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