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ESRB Videogame Ratings

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  • jayedub7423
    i think the ESRB is great, it's the retailers who continue to sell the games to minors and parents who are not involved in their kids' life that doesnt work.

    true story, and i've told this numorous times; when i worked at gamestop, i had a mother wanting to buy Max Payne and GTA:III on the PS2 for her child, who had to be maybe 10yrs old, but refused to buy a magazine for him because it had a picture of a computer generated female promoting BMXXX with hard nipples. this was after i explained the content of both games to her, and her comment was that she doesnt know anything about this stuff, but she felt that the magazine was inappropriate.

    these are the kinds of parents that get upset when their kid goes and shoots another kid and then wants to blame it on videos games, or television or even music.

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  • Jim H. Moreno
    started a topic ESRB Videogame Ratings

    ESRB Videogame Ratings

    Activision Survey Reveals Strong Majority of Parents Find ESRB Videogame Ratings Highly Effective and Influential

    Eight in Ten Parents of Videogamers are Very Familiar With ESRB Ratings and Pay Close Attention to Them Nearly Three Quarters of Parents Are Comfortable with Videogames as Part of Their Family's Life; Over Half Play Videogames with Their Children

    SANTA MONICA, Calif., Dec 05, 2006 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Parents overwhelmingly agree that the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) rating system is a highly effective and influential tool for determining what videogames are appropriate for their children to play, according to a national survey released today by Activision, Inc. (Nasdaq: ATVI) as part of Activision's "Ratings Are Not a Game(R)" educational initiative. With the holiday shopping season underway, the survey was conducted by The Harrison Group to help determine the awareness and influence of the ESRB rating system among videogamers and their parents.

    Among the key findings:

    -- Eighty-four percent of parents said they are very familiar with the ESRB ratings system, compared to 65 percent of children ages 8-17 who indicated the same.

    -- Nearly eighty percent of parents (79&#37 revealed that they pay close attention to the ESRB ratings on videogames, especially those parents with children ages 8-12 (89%).

    -- More than two thirds of parents (68%) believe the ESRB ratings system is effective in helping them determine whether a specific game is
    appropriate for their child.

    -- A majority of parents (56%) cited a game's ESRB rating as their top purchase influencer when considering whether to buy a videogame for their children, more than any other factor.

    -- Parents said they actively research over half (52%) of all videogames prior to approving purchase for their children - including reading game reviews/previews or visiting gaming websites.

    The study also showed that a strong majority (74%) of parents feel that videogames are part of their family's life and that they are very
    comfortable with this. In fact, 58 percent of parents surveyed said they play videogames themselves, and among those players, 52 percent of their videogame playing time is spent with their children. Moreover, even when playing videogames by themselves, half of that time (49%) is spent playing their children's games.

    "We were delighted to learn that parents and their children are very familiar with the ESRB ratings system, but it was even more gratifying
    to see that such a large majority of parents are aware of, researching and active in their children's videogame purchasing and playing," said
    Robin Kaminsky, EVP of Publishing for Activision. "Activision strongly supports the ESRB rating system, which we believe is the most
    comprehensive tool parents can use to determine which games are appropriate for their children. Looking ahead, these results will help
    strengthen our efforts to raise greater awareness among both parents and young people of why 'Ratings Are Not a Game.'"

    "Video game ratings can only be effective if consumers understand the ratings and use them when making purchasing decisions for their
    families, and this study shows that parents greatly rely on and value the ESRB ratings in helping them decide which games to allow their
    children to play," said Patricia Vance, ESRB President. "The ESRB commends Activision on its 'Ratings Are Not a Game' educational
    initiative and its outstanding efforts to educate consumers about video game ratings."

    The Entertainment Software Rating Board is a non-profit, self-regulatory body established in 1994 by the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) that independently assigns ratings, enforces advertising guidelines and helps ensure responsible online privacy practices for the interactive entertainment software industry.

    ESRB ratings are designed to provide information about videogame content to help consumers determine a game's suitability and to aid parents in making informed purchasing decisions. ESRB raters rate games part-time, are selected from a broad and diverse pool of adult applicants, tend to have experience with children, and are screened to ensure they have no ties with or connection to the video game industry.

    ESRB ratings, which are found directly on the front and back of a game's packaging, have two equal parts. Six main rating categories suggest age appropriateness for a game, while content descriptors indicate a range of over 30 different potential elements that may have triggered a particular rating and/or may be of interest or concern, such as violence, sex, humor, language and the use or depiction of controlled substances.

    Content ratings also take into consideration how these elements are depicted, in addition to their frequency, intensity and context. Due to
    the unique interactive characteristics of videogames, the ESRB rating system also takes into account elements such as the reward system and the degree of player control, both of which can affect which rating category and content descriptors are ultimately assigned to the game. For more information on the ESRB rating system, go to

    In a 2001 report to Congress, the Federal Trade Commission found the ESRB rating system to be more comprehensive than the rating systems used for movies and music, noting that "there is much in the game industry's rating disclosure requirements that merits duplication by others." Additionally, in September 2004, the Kaiser Family Foundation released a national survey of parents that found the ESRB ratings system to be the most useful of all of entertainment rating systems.


    For the Activision ESRB survey, 1,014 online interviews were conducted among a nationally-representative group of videogame players ages 8 to 24 and their parents. The research was conducted between September 21 and September 28, 2006 by the Harrison Group, a strategic marketing consulting and research services firm (

    Comments from Robin Kaminsky regarding the ESRB survey results are available at Media can preview and request broadcast-standard video digitally or by tape at no cost from this site.

    About Harrison Group

    Harrison Group ( is one of the country's leading marketing and strategic research consulting firms. Based in Waterbury, Connecticut, Harrison Group specializes in concept testing, forecasting, segmentation, branding, product feature/price optimization and market modeling for some of America's leading companies, including financial services firms, software and technology companies, retailers, consumer package goods companies, pharmaceutical manufacturers and interactive entertainment companies.

    About Activision

    Headquartered in Santa Monica, California, Activision, Inc. is a leading worldwide developer, publisher and distributor of interactive
    entertainment and leisure products. Founded in 1979, Activision posted net revenues of $1.47 billion for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2006.

    Activision maintains operations in the U.S., Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Australia, Sweden, Spain, the Netherlands and South Korea. More information about Activision and its products can be found on the company's World Wide Web site, which is located at

    The statements made in this press release that are not historical facts are "forward-looking statements." These forward-looking statements are based on current expectations and assumptions that are subject to risks and uncertainties. The Company cautions readers of this press release that a number of important factors could cause Activision's actual future results to differ materially from those expressed in any such forward-looking statements. Such factors include, without limitation, product delays, retail acceptance of our products, industry competition, rapid changes in technology and industry standards, protection of proprietary rights, litigation and an informal SEC inquiry, maintenance of relationships with key personnel, vendors and third-party developers, international economic and political conditions, integration of recently acquired subsidiaries and identification of suitable future acquisition opportunities. These important factors and other factors that potentially could affect the Company's financial results are described in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the Company's most recent Annual report on Form 10-K and Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q. Readers of this press release are referred to such filings. The Company may change its intention, belief or expectation, at any time and without notice, based upon any changes in such factors, in the Company's assumptions or otherwise. The Company undertakes no obligation to release publicly any revisions to any forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date hereof or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.

    SOURCE: Activision, Inc.
    Last edited by Jim H. Moreno; 05 Dec 06, 10:06.

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