Bill would require vidgame raters to view entire content

Solon to videogame raters: Don’t rate a game unless you’ve looked at the whole thing.

Sen. Sam Brownback (R-Kansas) wants the Entertainment Software Ratings Board, which currently rates games based on a taped segment the maker submits for review, to view the game’s entire content.

Brownback’s bill, the Truth in Video Game Rating Act, which he introduced Tuesday, would direct the Federal Trade Commission to require ESRB raters to do precisely that.

“For videogame ratings to be meaningful and worthy of parents’ trust, the game ratings must be more objective and accurate,” Brownback said in a statement.

Brownback and others in the Senate — mainly Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.), Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) and Rick Santorum (R-Penn.) — have criticized some vidgame makers for strong content and the ESRB for not providing sufficiently justified ratings. The four are also co-sponsors of recently passed legislation that will fund a study of the effects on childhood development of exposure to electronic media.

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