Australians Overwhelmingly Support R18+ Rating

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John Funk:

But before we all rejoice - and I hate to be a Debbie Downer here - I think we need to face a sobering reality: As much as we might dislike the guy, Michael Atkinson may have a point

The sobering reality such as it may be is that people we disagree with can make factual statements, or even, occasionally, blatantly obvious predictions. The truth of Atkinson's prediction in no way makes it a "point". Truth makes something worth evaluating. On evaluation, this particular piece of truth is still irrelevant and worthless. As others have pointed out, surveys of this nature are inherently self-selecting in terms of populations. Typically, the population consists of people who care, one way or the other. So, of the population who cares, 99% are in favor, and 1% are against.

The equivalent argument applied to non-presidential elections is that we can't actually elect that dude the mayor: only 15% of the population voted! What about the 85% that are out there, that want ME to be the mayor, and they just didn't bother voting today? It's not fair!! I claim the silent majority for myself!

If the majority of people either approve of the 18+ rating, or don't care enough to respond, that IS overwhelmingly in support of the rating (I believe I said so in another article on the same subject). I notice that Michael Atkinson doesn't try and claim there is some kind of silent majority that directly agree with him.

I agree. If a law only affects a limited group of people, only the people affected by the law are going to care unless there's some extenuating moral circumstance. If the majority of the people don't care, the decision should go to the minority who are affected, and their opinion should be taken at face value.

It's like saying that an election is invalid because most people don't vote. The very idea is reprehensible, and coming from an elected official it's even worse.

But before we all rejoice - and I hate to be a Debbie Downer here - I think we need to face a sobering reality: As much as we might dislike the guy, Michael Atkinson may have a point. The Attorney General of South Australia predicted that the response would show overwhelming support because the only people who would care enough to get involved would be gamers - and that the rest of the public couldn't give a damn one way or the other.

Well, considering only gamers would be affected by this rating, it seems quite fitting to me that only they'd bother participating. I mean, if you don't game, why would you care whether or not gaming gets R18+ games? It'd be like me voting about new biking regulations, when I don't bike and couldn't care less about biking.

John Funk:
The Attorney General of South Australia predicted that the response would show overwhelming support because the only people who would care enough to get involved would be gamers - and that the rest of the public couldn't give a damn one way or the other.

If people don't care enough to voice their opinion on the matter then their "vote" as it where should be taken as an abstention not a negative or positive. Saying that because only people with a vested interest (gamers, game makers, game sellers, right wing nanny state wackadoodles) will take part in the debate is an asinine statement with no basis in fact.

At the risk of beating a dead horse (as the point has certainly been made) isn't wanting to dismiss the opinions presented on a gaming rating system because they belong to gamers kind of like wanting to dismiss public comment on a hydroelectric plant because there wasn't sufficient input from the Amish?

Now they have a gauge on public opinion.
They may be slow down here but they get there eventually.

SirBryghtside:

John Funk:
Of those 1,084, only 11 had been against the idea of a R18+ rating: less than 1%.

Actually, a little more than 1% - 1.46 recurring percent, to be exact.

But anyway, I really hope this comes into play - I'm no Aussie, but I really feel they need justice on this.

Wait... I can tell it's more than one percent, but 1.46? That can't be right. That's almost 1 and a half percent.

(Calculates 11/1084)

Nope, it's 1.014%.

I think what you did was divide 1084 by eleven, giving 98.54 recurring (meaning 1084 is 9855% of eleven when you round up) and subtract from 100, which is a meaningless number.

So your statement that it is not less than 1% is correct, but your math is wrong.

Sorry, but I was an accounting major.

PhiMed:

SirBryghtside:

John Funk:
Of those 1,084, only 11 had been against the idea of a R18+ rating: less than 1%.

Actually, a little more than 1% - 1.46 recurring percent, to be exact.

But anyway, I really hope this comes into play - I'm no Aussie, but I really feel they need justice on this.

Wait... I can tell it's more than one percent, but 1.46? That can't be right. That's almost 1 and a half percent.

(Calculates 11/1084)

Nope, it's 1.014%.

I think what you did was divide 1084 by eleven, giving 98.54 recurring (meaning 1084 is 9855% of eleven when you round up) and subtract from 100, which is a meaningless number.

So your statement that it is not less than 1% is correct, but your math is wrong.

Sorry, but I was an accounting major.

ahah i read it wrong. any excuse to jump on someones parade.
anyhow
Government is all about taking rights in exchange for providing security.
though i think the whole denying 18+ ratings is taking it too far.

Late post, please ignore...

March damnit! Rally and protest! Thats the only way this will happen in their current governmental body, obviously voting isn't going to do it, as cockeyed as that is.

Does this really suprise anyone? Hope the vote goes well and they finally get that 18+. I mean you guys live on a continent that is constantly trying to kill you. You deserve your games.

All I can say is this: image

Take THAT Mr Atkinson!

If the only people who responded (mostly) responded positively and everyone else doesn't care, then Atkinson doesn't have a leg to stand on. His job is to represent the will of the people. The peoples will has just been made clear, it is now his job to impliment it.

lets see what he does.

Nevyrmoore:

chishandfips:

Nevyrmoore:
Unless Michael Atkinson decides "Okay, fine, have your 18+ rating!", then nothing will change until someone else takes his place.

Isn't the whole idea of democracy that if the votes are in favour of R18+, Atkinson can't do a damn thing about it?

See, here's the thing - the public do NOT actually vote on this matter. The way the system currently works is that in order for major changes such as this to go through, there needs to be a unanimous vote from all the Attorney Generals. To date, the only Attorney General voting no is Atkinson.

As such, the only way this will go through is if (and that's a big if) Mr. Atkinson changes his mind, or if the next person to take his place does not share his thoughts on the matter. Until then, nothing will change.

There is a South Australian state election on March 20th this year. If the Liberals can win this Atkinson will no longer be the S.A Attorney General as the main requirement for the position is being a member of cabinet. So hopefully the Liberals win and manage to replace him with someone as not hell bent on censorship as Atkinson is.

The problem with Atkinson's argument is you can take ANY issue and say the same thing.

Unless the issue gets a LOT of publicity and press coverage, most people won't vote on something that doesn't affect them. And a game rating only affects gamers. So... Duh.

John Funk:

But before we all rejoice - and I hate to be a Debbie Downer here - I think we need to face a sobering reality: As much as we might dislike the guy, Michael Atkinson may have a point. The Attorney General of South Australia predicted that the response would show overwhelming support because the only people who would care enough to get involved would be gamers - and that the rest of the public couldn't give a damn one way or the other.

Here's a question...Do we really give a toss what he thinks? I mean, he's proven to be so obtuse in the past, virtually anything he says now can be easily dismissed as crazy alk.

But nonetheless, I would like to take this opportunity to send a message to Atkinson...

*Ahem* IN YOUR FACE!

Sorry, just had to do that.

Abedeus:
Wait, if only people who care about it are gamers, and the only people it will affect is gamers, and it's only to their interest... Then why the hell is it still a problem?

GET OUT OF HERE WITH YOUR LOGIC AND SENSE MAKING.

But leave your avatar. It's zetta cool.

Ok, and suppose Atkinson is right, the only people who care will be gamers. And who will a R18+ rating only affect? That's right, gamers. OF COURSE they want their demographic represented. This matters to them, and the rest of the citizenry won't give a rat's ass and a new rating isn't going to affect them one bit.

God I am glad I don't live in Australia. Beautiful women and all, but god the government sucks.

John Funk:
Australians Overwhelmingly Support R18+ Rating

image

Respondents to the Australian government survey debating whether to institute a R18+ rating are overwhelmingly in favor of the idea. And I do mean overwhelmingly.

When the Australian government sought public input on the idea of R18+ game ratings, many beleaguered Aussie gamers heralded it as a step in the right direction. The Australian public would vote against censorship, they believed, and vote against giving the government heavy-handed power to determine what they could and could not view as entertainment.

As it turns out, the numbers may be reflecting that. According to a representative from the Copyright and Classification Policy Branch, the government had received 6,239 submissions for the R18+ public consultation - 5,465 by email, 447 by fax, and 327 by snail-mail - and had processed 1,084 thus far. Of those 1,084, only 11 had been against the idea of a R18+ rating: about 1%.

If the next five thousand respondents continue on the same pattern as the first thousand, then the Aussie government may have proof that a good many people support the R18+ rating.

But before we all rejoice - and I hate to be a Debbie Downer here - I think we need to face a sobering reality: As much as we might dislike the guy, Michael Atkinson may have a point. The Attorney General of South Australia predicted that the response would show overwhelming support because the only people who would care enough to get involved would be gamers - and that the rest of the public couldn't give a damn one way or the other.

Maybe Atkinson is wrong and these numbers represent a wide swath of the Australian people, sick of government censorship. But then again, maybe he's not wrong - just because the guy represents everything we stand against doesn't mean he can't have a point.

But on the other hand, does it matter? If the Aussie government finds that their survey supports the R18+ rating 99:1, will it actually matter who the respondents were? I guess we'll have to wait and see.

(Gamespot UK)

Permalink

I agree with you completely that he has a point however wouldn't you agree it's more relevant that he's going against the very foundation of democracy by favoring his own personal opinion over the publics?

evil_lincoln:

Nevyrmoore:

chishandfips:

Nevyrmoore:
Unless Michael Atkinson decides "Okay, fine, have your 18+ rating!", then nothing will change until someone else takes his place.

Isn't the whole idea of democracy that if the votes are in favour of R18+, Atkinson can't do a damn thing about it?

See, here's the thing - the public do NOT actually vote on this matter. The way the system currently works is that in order for major changes such as this to go through, there needs to be a unanimous vote from all the Attorney Generals. To date, the only Attorney General voting no is Atkinson.

As such, the only way this will go through is if (and that's a big if) Mr. Atkinson changes his mind, or if the next person to take his place does not share his thoughts on the matter. Until then, nothing will change.

There is a South Australian state election on March 20th this year. If the Liberals can win this Atkinson will no longer be the S.A Attorney General as the main requirement for the position is being a member of cabinet. So hopefully the Liberals win and manage to replace him with someone as not hell bent on censorship as Atkinson is.

Awesome, here's hoping all goes well...

If the majority of the people don't give a shit one way or the other then there is no harm in allowing the gameing community to have their 18+ rateing.

In other words if you ask,

"All opposed"

and no hands go up, and then when you say

"All for"

and a couple hands go up, then you must conclude.

"the motion is carried"

Geoffrey42:

John Funk:

But before we all rejoice - and I hate to be a Debbie Downer here - I think we need to face a sobering reality: As much as we might dislike the guy, Michael Atkinson may have a point

The sobering reality such as it may be is that people we disagree with can make factual statements, or even, occasionally, blatantly obvious predictions. The truth of Atkinson's prediction in no way makes it a "point". Truth makes something worth evaluating. On evaluation, this particular piece of truth is still irrelevant and worthless. As others have pointed out, surveys of this nature are inherently self-selecting in terms of populations. Typically, the population consists of people who care, one way or the other. So, of the population who cares, 99% are in favor, and 1% are against.

The equivalent argument applied to non-presidential elections is that we can't actually elect that dude the mayor: only 15% of the population voted! What about the 85% that are out there, that want ME to be the mayor, and they just didn't bother voting today? It's not fair!! I claim the silent majority for myself!

People in Australia are required by law to vote so there would be no %15 voter turnout. From what I've heard on voting day most of the buisnesses in Australia are closed except for pubs. So basically everyone gets up gets completely faced and goes out and votes, and supposedly when people are drunk they vote more conservatively. Not sure if it's true or not it's just what I've heard.

Also heres a tip for anyone actively trying to stop Atkinson. To get more right wingers on board work the phrases Sharia Law and Michael Atkinson together in the same sentence as many times as you can. Yeah it's a dick move and a pretty low blow but hey, thats politics for ya.

Here I'll start. I'm sure glad the atorney genral in the US can't basically just impose Sharia Law-esque censorship like South Australian atorney Michael Atkinson can.

John Funk:
The Attorney General of South Australia predicted that the response would show overwhelming support because the only people who would care enough to get involved would be gamers - and that the rest of the public couldn't give a damn one way or the other.

yes mostly Gamers voted, but that because mostly gamers were burned by this censorship. If you put an anti-religion law through, mostly people in the religious community would vote against it... It doesn't matter who votes, if there is a majority opinion then the Government is supposed to obey it. Not the other way around.

John Funk:
Australians Overwhelmingly Support R18+ Rating
But before we all rejoice - and I hate to be a Debbie Downer here - I think we need to face a sobering reality: As much as we might dislike the guy, Michael Atkinson may have a point. The Attorney General of South Australia predicted that the response would show overwhelming support because the only people who would care enough to get involved would be gamers - and that the rest of the public couldn't give a damn one way or the other.

Maybe Atkinson is wrong and these numbers represent a wide swath of the Australian people, sick of government censorship. But then again, maybe he's not wrong - just because the guy represents everything we stand against doesn't mean he can't have a point.

That's what's known as democracy. People who care deeply about a subject make their opinions known, the others don't care enough to bother.

Not that Atkinson being right about the voting constituency is a gain on his side. Even if a large number of people hate his policy because they are gamers, they still hate his policy and will vote accordingly come the next election (and whine about it, lowering his approval ratings until then.)

Public image of a politician is rarely determined over serious issues. This might snowball into a more serious issue because it is censorship (though I hate using the slippery slope argument.)

At least he's not as much of an idiot as Jack Thompson.

John Funk:

But before we all rejoice - and I hate to be a Debbie Downer here - I think we need to face a sobering reality: As much as we might dislike the guy, Michael Atkinson may have a point. The Attorney General of South Australia predicted that the response would show overwhelming support because the only people who would care enough to get involved would be gamers - and that the rest of the public couldn't give a damn one way or the other.

That's very poor reasoning. By that logic the government should never consult the public about anything they do.

Damn right they need the 18+ rating. I think it's ridiculous that they don't have it already.

Let's see someone throw out the results of an election because only the people who care about the election voted, and by completely logical extension, the other candidate should win by default.

Yes, that makes PERFECT SENSE!

i'm glad i have a better relative freedom...

I hope they don't pull some shit where their gov't denies the rating classification because of the considerable number of people who didn't vote, would have wanted it that way. I can just see that happening.

The thing is, not having an 18+ rating is ridiculous. I assume that Australia doesn't ban or water down R-rated movies? What's so different about those two things? They're still seeing blood, gore, nudity, and people generally being dicks to each other, its just that you're not actually interacting with the action in a movie. Kids aren't supposed to be able to get into either, but they do, and nothing can change that.

"The Attorney General of South Australia predicted that the response would show overwhelming support because the only people who would care enough to get involved would be gamers - and that the rest of the public couldn't give a damn one way or the other."

Hmm, large emphasis on the last point, THEY DON'T CARE.

So lots of people want it, and everyone else doesn't care. How the hell is Atkinson trying to interpret "can't be bothered" as "we're opposed to it"

That's like disputing whether Obama should have won the US Presidential election just because the turnout of eligible voters was only 61%... as if the other 39% would all have voted for McCain or something.

What bollocks.

Though I do fully retract a certain "fuck you" to the people of Australia... turns out you're an all right bunch and really I should have known that all along as I have known so many thoroughly decent Aussies in my life... thankfully I have never had the misfortune to meet Atkinson or his type.

evil_lincoln:

Nevyrmoore:

chishandfips:

Nevyrmoore:
Unless Michael Atkinson decides "Okay, fine, have your 18+ rating!", then nothing will change until someone else takes his place.

Isn't the whole idea of democracy that if the votes are in favour of R18+, Atkinson can't do a damn thing about it?

See, here's the thing - the public do NOT actually vote on this matter. The way the system currently works is that in order for major changes such as this to go through, there needs to be a unanimous vote from all the Attorney Generals. To date, the only Attorney General voting no is Atkinson.

As such, the only way this will go through is if (and that's a big if) Mr. Atkinson changes his mind, or if the next person to take his place does not share his thoughts on the matter. Until then, nothing will change.

There is a South Australian state election on March 20th this year. If the Liberals can win this Atkinson will no longer be the S.A Attorney General as the main requirement for the position is being a member of cabinet. So hopefully the Liberals win and manage to replace him with someone as not hell bent on censorship as Atkinson is.

Just to make this known, there is a political party set up in the electorate that Mr Atkinson is in, founded by an avid and passionate gamer, and is a pretty smart guy too.. the party is called Gamers4Croydon and you can find their site at http://www.gamers4croydon.org/

I wish them all the best of luck, although winning may seem unlikely I really hope they can get the message across well enough to dislodge Atkinson from his seat of power..

RikSharp:
michael atkinson: "we can't have a public vote, they will vote against me cos its only the people that the current rules affect that care enough to vote"

i think thats kind of the point...
the people that it affects want to tell you that they want new rules.
going by the numbers, looks like they are doing just that.

So you think, then the others are not fulfilling their duty of living in a democratic state.
If your country holds a public vote on some issue and you can´t be arsed to look into it and maybe decide for a side and go vote for it, then you fail as a citizen and shouldn´t be complaining when the side that actually DID bother to go vote voted against your will!
You are lucky australia even DOES a vote on that matter, i still have to suffer from a spectacular form of dictatorship that changes it´s faces every 4 years, or not, for that matter...

I feel so distant from the politics in my country, and so fucking pissed off about them deciding stuff that the PEOPLE should decide in the first place, FOR THE PEOPLE, all for their "good" of course!
The big fat "For citizen and fatherland" on the Reichstag used to mean something back in the 50ies-70ies, but not that!

But i´m heaviely strafing off course so let me just say that ANY vote done publically is REPRESENTING the mindset of the people...the ones who DON´T go voting don´t care anyway and can therefore be ignored.

this is indeed a step in the right dirction for australian gamers, and their government in general.

I hope Atkinson's an assassinaton target in assasins creed 3.

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