Q: Aren’t computer and video games only for children?

Games were once the domain of teenage boys but is now widely enjoyed by people of all ages from young children, teens, adults and seniors. Playing video and computer games is almost as popular as watching television or surfing the net. In fact, the latest research from the Interactive Australia 2009 report found 68 per cent of Australians play games and the average age of a gamer is 30 years old.

Q: Are there any other developed countries which ban R18+ video and computer games?

No, Australia holds the strictest classification system for computer and video games amongst other developed nations. Countries such as the US and Britain all carry an R18+ classification for games.

Q: Won’t an R18+ rating expose children to inappropriate content?

The desire to protect children from inappropriate content albeit important is not entirely relevant to this issue. R18+ classified games would only be made available for adults and not for children. If we are able to mange exposure to R18+ even X18+ films such as The Godfather or American Psycho, then surely we can manage R18+ computer and video games.

Plus, banning a contentious game only raises a child’s interest and him or her to explore beyond the safety of our classification system and download an illegal version of the game.

Q: How can parents prevent children from accessing R18+ games?

All the latest gaming consoles and platforms including Xbox 360, Playstation 3, Wii and latest Windows OS’s contain specific settings that offer different levels of protection to determine what type games are permitted to be played. Parents can have peace of mind knowing they are able to manage and even restrict their child’s access to a specific game.

Q: Aren’t computer and video games worse than film because you have to interact with them?

Games have often attracted negative attention in the media but while these incidents are troubling they are uncommon. At this stage, there are not enough studies to suggest computer and video games are more harmful than other media and lead to aggressive behaviour.