The new rules of South Africa regarding video game age ratings are generating controversy.
According to the South African Film and Publication Board, which has just issued a new set of guidelines for its game classifiers. There is no game that is suitable for all ages.
“There is no ‘All Ages’ age rating for games,” the 40-page document reads, according to Business Insider South Africa.
“Children may not play a game rated ‘PG’ unless and only when supervised by an adult,” because such games often contain elements “disruptive or harmful to children.”
“Children ages seven to nine may not play a game rated ‘7-9PG’ unless supervised by an adult,” the document adds.
only from the 10 years children are allowed to play certain games without supervision, although none of those games may contain any kind of violence.
Even in the ranking of 10-12PGthe games must not be threatening, cause moral harm or “contain any occurrence of implied, verbal or actual criminal techniques”.
Only from the age of 13 are gamers allowed to play video games where you actually kill enemies
Previous guidelines issued in 2019 had a relatively narrow definition of violence, but the new guidelines expand that definition to include “detailed instruction or promotion of violence.”
The guidelines also expand on what is considered “criminal techniques,” implying that video games are a vector for teaching children to be criminals.
Domestic abuse is included in the list of criminal activities, noting that a domestic relationship can now include a one-night stand.
The Board has also taken a stance against bias in video games, barring implicit, verbal, or actual bias in gaming rates for children under 12.
The Board defines prejudice as “preconceived judgement, or an adverse opinion or inclination, formed without just or rational grounds or before sufficient knowledge is acquired, or based on group stereotypes, and which is demeaning to human dignity.”
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