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Old 12-12-2006, 08:25 AM   #1
KaVir
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"German gamers face jail for acts of virtual violence

Players and creators of video games could face imprisonment for acts of virtual violence under draft legislation being drawn up by two of Germany's state governments.

Politicians in Bavaria and Lower Saxony have proposed a new offence that will punish "cruel violence on humans or human-looking characters" inside games. Early drafts suggest that infringers should face fines or up to 12 months' jail for promoting or enacting in-game violence.
"

Read the full article: http://www.guardian.co.uk/germany/ar...969920,00.html

Yes, it's just draft legislation, and I'm sure it'll get shot down. But it's still a bit worrying (for me, at least; I live in Bavaria). I've no idea if the legislation is purely for graphical games, or if it would cover text-based games as well, but either way I think I'll just pack my bags and go back home to England if the law gets passed.
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Old 12-12-2006, 08:51 AM   #2
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That's ABSURD!!! And I would've guessed the US would have been the first place to try something that dumb!
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Old 12-12-2006, 09:05 AM   #3
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Yes, it seems unlikely such a proposition will pass (at least in it's current form). All types of media can and do depict acts of violence. Will they prohibit the reading of Grimm's fairy tales to children next?

In any event, one step towards protecting yourself may be to add a warning during your login sequence, much like you see before certain television programs or movies.
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Old 12-13-2006, 08:16 AM   #4
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Disclaimers are often worthless, incidentally.

I expect the legislation will only cover "cruel" violence and the promotion of such. Combat games between willing participants will be fine, running over prostitutes with your car will not be. Similarly violence that is not 'promoted', or directed towards obviously inhuman foes, will probably be fine.
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Old 12-13-2006, 12:36 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by
I expect the legislation will only cover "cruel" violence and the promotion of such. Combat games between willing participants will be fine, running over prostitutes with your car will not be. Similarly violence that is not 'promoted', or directed towards obviously inhuman foes, will probably be fine.
The question is what about text based combat that isn't between two willing combatants? It'd never be the type of MUD I would play (not for violence issues, but for the genre) where you could run over a prostitute but a MUD based in a modern world could actually very well have something along these lines implemented into it.
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Old 12-13-2006, 01:05 PM   #6
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If I play a game, and then out of nowhere an AI orc jumps out and
tortures and kills me, will the game designer go to jail?

-Crat
http://lpmuds.net
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Old 12-13-2006, 03:24 PM   #7
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They...might.
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Old 12-13-2006, 09:54 PM   #8
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And I would've guessed the US would have been the first place to try something that dumb!
Nah.. If it was the US they would whine a lot about virtual violence but the most likely legislation would probably be again running or buying services in virtual brothels or acts of indecent exposure. lol Seriously, you honestly think the US are the only nation with idiots? Maybe the loudest and stupidest a lot of the time, but that just makes the quiet nuts everyplace else more dangerous. Stuff the lunies do in Germany "sounds" sane by comparison to the tirades of atsronomically insane BS some US crazies shovel. Makes it real easy to say, "Ah, well... I guess our nuts are not so bad, maybe they have a point." lol
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Old 12-13-2006, 10:40 PM   #9
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I think this is a great idea!

Now all the 13 year-olds on mudconnecter can actually backup their claims of sending us all to jail .


... just kidding, btw. <.< I'm sure most of those people are actually 12.
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Old 12-13-2006, 11:06 PM   #10
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Not just Grimm's fairy tales - how about old Mother Goose!

Jack and Jill went up the hill to fetch a pail of water -

child slavery, anyone?

Jack fell down and broke his crown
and Jill came tumbling after

Way to promote graphic catastrophes.

or how about this classic:

Rock a-bye baby on the treetop

(WTF kind of crazy parent would place their infant on top of a TREE?)

when the wind blows the cradle will rock
when the bough breaks, the cradle will fall
and down will come baby, cradle and all

Encouraging and promoting not only child abuse, child neglect, torture, but also encouraging nightmares and possible adolescent psychosis. All in one pretty little lullabye.

Surely the Bavarian government has more important things to do with their time and funds, than to examine, research, investigate, and come up with laws about participating in a game that causes violence to people who don't really exist?
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Old 12-14-2006, 07:04 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (Fizban @ Dec. 13 2006,11:36)
The question is what about text based combat that isn't between two willing combatants? It'd never be the type of MUD I would play (not for violence issues, but for the genre) where you could run over a prostitute but a MUD based in a modern world could actually very well have something along these lines implemented into it.
What about it? If you want to make games that reward people for acting in an anti-social and indeed illegal way with direct correlations to the real world, I have no problem with the Bavarian government taking issue with that.
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Old 12-14-2006, 07:06 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (Jazuela @ Dec. 13 2006,10:06)
Not just Grimm's fairy tales - how about old Mother Goose!

Jack and Jill went up the hill to fetch a pail of water -

child slavery, anyone?

Jack fell down and broke his crown
and Jill came tumbling after

Way to promote graphic catastrophes.

or how about this classic:

Rock a-bye baby on the treetop

(WTF kind of crazy parent would place their infant on top of a TREE?)

when the wind blows the cradle will rock
when the bough breaks, the cradle will fall
and down will come baby, cradle and all

Encouraging and promoting not only child abuse, child neglect, torture, but also encouraging nightmares and possible adolescent psychosis. All in one pretty little lullabye.

Surely the Bavarian government has more important things to do with their time and funds, than to examine, research, investigate, and come up with laws about participating in a game that causes violence to people who don't really exist?
Luckily, the Bavarian government, for all its faults, will have a much better idea of the definition of 'promote' than you appear to have.
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Old 12-14-2006, 06:24 PM   #13
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Hmm. This law does kind of bring up something funny though.. Would they fall for the excuses given by the makers of "Left Behind".

http://scienceblogs.com/pharyng....hen.php

Given that their "only" excuse for promoting the use of violence is some lame claim that its "pacifistic", because you lost soul points for shooting people, instead of converting them...

And, how much do you want to bet that the people in Germany wanting to pass this are the **identical** class of nitwits that promote the "Left Behind" as a "good alternative" to all those violent games that:

1. You lose if you kill the wrong people.
2. You can't win by simply killing everyone.
3. Get harder the more of an ass you are in them.
4. Have real "virtual" consequences that are just a tiny, itsy bitsy bit more *tangible* than having to pray to regain your spirit points after killing a crowd full of unbelievers with a machine gun...

If you ask me, the legislation that "should" be under discussion is the declaration of certain types of religious obsession and irrational extremist views as "mental illness". But.. If you did that, where could you stop?
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Old 12-17-2006, 02:31 PM   #14
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Check out this story, from Bavaria, in fact, by Tim Partlett, one of the devs at Crytek, about a government raid on their offices and the general hassles they put up with for making video games in Germany.

http://www.quartertothree.com/game-t...ad.php?t=31767

--matt
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Old 12-17-2006, 06:42 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (the_logos @ Dec. 17 2006,7:31)
Check out this story, from Bavaria, in fact, by Tim Partlett, one of the devs at Crytek, about a government raid on their offices and the general hassles they put up with for making video games in Germany.
Interesting reading, but once again it's about the ultra-conservative Bavaria (Germany's equivalent of Texas) rather than Germany in general. One of the posters who replied from Berlin said "As far as general conditions go, it's fine where I live. We have a small, but healthy community of dev teams around here. Earlier this year our studio even got visited by a member of the Bundestag (parliament), who wanted to know more about the development of games."
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Old 12-20-2006, 05:13 PM   #16
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What about it? If you want to make games that reward people for acting in an anti-social and indeed illegal way with direct correlations to the real world, I have no problem with the Bavarian government taking issue with that.

I do. Then again I'm the type of person that openly protests ALL forms of censorship in any form of media. I'm also the type that believes in free choice in almost all matters as well though. (ie. prostitution, and all drugs should be legal in my opinion) In the case of the drugs ones that can cause harm to others around them I would make them only legal in private property.This thought has nothing to do with the fact that i smoke pounds of pot in a year or that I drink a lot, so much as I just believe in free choice
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