With all the attempts at legislating video games going on in various states around the country it was only a matter of time before a political network for gamers came along and the folks at the ESA have decided to get it started themselves by launching the Video Game Voters Network:
“The “Video Game Voters Network”, a new grassroots political network for gamers, officially launched today at www.videogamevoters.org. The website was created as a means for American adults who play computer and video games to organize and take action on important policy issues affecting the computer and video game industry.
‘Computer and video games represent one of the most important new media developments of this generation. Unlike many other forms of entertainment they offer players the opportunity to explore, be creative, learn through interaction and express themselves to others,’ said Will Wright, Chief Designer at Maxis. ‘It is vitally important that we protect and nurture this new art form so that it can reach its full potential. Like most new forms of artistic expression that have come before (music, novels, movies), the primary critics of video games are the people that do not play them.’
The Video Game Voters Network opposes efforts to regulate the content of entertainment media, including proposals to criminalize the sale of certain games to minors, or regulate video games differently than movies, music, books, and other media. The site, a project of the Entertainment Software Association (ESA), enables gamers to stay updated about these and other game industry related issues, to register to vote, and to take action by contacting federal, state, and local officials to express their views. Gamers over 18 years old can join the Network and/or send a letter to policymakers at www.videogamevoters.org.
‘With over seventy bills to restrict game sales to minors already pending in state legislatures across the country this year, it’s time for gamers to make their voices heard loudly and clearly, to let politicians know that they will no longer stand by and let games be the scapegoat for larger social problems,’ said ESA president Doug Lowenstein. ‘Gamers can join together through the Video Game Voters Network to send a strong message to politicians to let them know that gamers care, that they vote, and that they will no longer tolerate these unconstitutional, unnecessary, and uninformed attacks on this important form of entertainment.’
I think this is a great idea and I’ve already signed up and sent off a letter to my state representatives, which the site makes it easy to do. If you’re of like mind then you may want to check it out.
Hat tip to Game Politics for posting the press release.