Gamers 4 Croydon

Posted by WhenYourGodGivesYouLemons On 1:07 PM

It's finally happened, someone out there amongst the video gaming community of Australia has finally said enough is enough. David Doe, who grew up in Adelaide but now lives in Melbourne, has established the political party Gamers 4 Croydon. The party, established due to the banning and censoring of Left 4 Dead 2, looks to cotnest the seat held by SA Attorney-General Michael Atkinson who is currently the only outspoken opponent to an R 18+ rating system for video games in Australia.

The party are not yet officially registered and recognised as a political party. They require 150 membership signatures so he can officially register the party. If they are registered the party plans to run for the seat of Croydon in next years elections. The main focus of Doe's party will be the overhaul of the Classification Board, specifically focused around the implementation of an R 18+ rating for video games. Atkinson has long been the thorn in the gaming industries side in Australia, staunchly protecting the current system which he believes is the best one to prevent children and at risk adults from accessing extreme content like violence and sex in video games.

The party also have other policies they would like to implement which are based around local, State and National issues like the Murray River and electric cars. You can read further about them here. From a first glance and limited political knowledge Doe may need to seek the advice of some political advisors if his aprty is registered as currently they read more like a list of demands rather than a list of proposals. That's not to say his ideas outside of the rating system aren't good. They are geared towards clean energy and optimising water consumption but they just need a little more polish and thought.

Doe's party will face a tough task of ousting Atkinson from his seat in Croydon. Atkinson won the 2006 election with 76 percent of the vote and will obviously face competition from the other major party in the area, the Liberals, who will also seek to win the seat. The party will need to run a good campiagn and avoid basing it around trying to smear Atkinson for his opposed views. Atkinson has proven to be a popular politician and any attacks should be well thought out as to sway voters instead of alienating them.

All of this though is a positive step for the video game industry in Australia. For too long people, like myslef, have sat around complaining about the ratings system but aside from a few petitions and emails haven't really done anything proactive. Doe is giving people a legitimate chance of changing the way things are run in regards to the video game industry and his efforts, even if they are in vein, are commendable. Doe's actions also echo some of the points made in an article over at Eurogamer. It was written in response to the Violent Video Games Drive in Germany a few weeks ago where gamers were urged to throw away their violent video games at a public rally. The rally failed but the issue of violence, especially school shootings, and their supposed link to video game playing still lingers. In the article the issue of the government and the people getting together, in a civil manner, and discussing the issues of video games instead of constantly engaging in slinging matches between pro and anti gamers. Doe's party will hopefully provide some sort of platform for this discussion to take place, open up a dialogue between those in power and those who play so they can make a decision together for the good of the people instead of jumping from one extreme to the next.

Anyway all of us in Australia, and possibly a few people around the world, are watching this development eagerly. The first step for Doe is getting the party made official and then trying to get it's voice heard so it has a chance of succeeding in the election. The ABC, free press and university publications may be the parties best friend in the beginning as they are always open to expressing a mulititude of opinions on any issue and supporting local movements.. Good luck Gamers 4 Croydon.



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