A court in the United States has overturned a law banning violent video games, saying that there is little evidence they encourage violent behaviour in children.
In June this year the Louisiana State Legislature passed a law that restricted the sale of video games, which included violence to the over 18s only. However, the law was immediately challenged in the courts and yesterday it was ruled unconstitutional by Judge James Brady.
He wrote that "the evidence that was submitted to the legislature in connection with the bill that became the statute is sparse and could hardly be called in any sense reliable." He also said that any connection between video game and real-world violence was "tenuous and speculative" at best.
The law prohibited the sale of games to minors which included violence out of line with the "prevailing standards" of the community and which didn’t have " serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value for minors."
It was pioneered by lawyer Jack Thompson, who has been a thorn in the side of computer games manufacturers, rappers and the former US Attorney General, who he sued for battery after she touched his arm. He also threatened to sue Midway Games, saying that a character in Mortal Combat: Armageddon resembled him.
Thompson blamed the court decision on an incompetent handling of the case by the state’s attorney general.
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