National Institute on Media and Family Issues Positive Video Game Report Card

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The National Institute on Media and Family (NIMF) has issued its annual "MediaWise Video Game Report Card". The report represents a shift from NIMF, in that they gave the video game industry fairly positive feedback, and finally acknowledged that some games are meant for adults.
The report card game the ESRB's ratings and efforts at ratings education an "A." NIMF also awarded gaming console manufacturers an "A" for giving parents tools with which to supervise play. Retailers' efforts to enforce ratings were awarded a "B+," making the overall evaluation of the industry very positive.

Past NIMF report cards have berated the video game industry for making violent games, seemingly buying into the misconception that all video games are made for children, therefore violent or otherwise adult games are destroying America. This year's report marks a pleasant shift, noting that there are games designed for players 17 years old and older. NIMF legitimately points out that these games are played by pre-teen and teenage youth, but opines sensibly that "Parents need to pay more attention to the amount of time and the types of games their kids play." To this end, rather than focusing on simply berating the vide game industry, NIMF provides lists of "Great Games for Kids" and "Games to Avoid."

In FI's opinion, NIMF has finally issued a report that has moved from misinformed heckling to content that can help parents make informed decisions.

The report did highlight some remaining dangers, including concerns over the prevalence of text messaging and the ready availability of downloadable games. NIMF is also legitimately concerned about possible predators in online games with a social component, ranging from Second Life to World of Warcraft.

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This page contains a single entry by Editor published on November 25, 2008 10:27 PM.

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