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April 12, 2007 02:10am
EMA Responds to FTC on Games
Source: Entertainment Merchants Association (EMA)
by: Company Press Release

(ENCINO, CA) -- Bo Andersen, President of the Entertainment Merchants Association (EMA), responded to the Federal Trade Commission’s report on the marketing of violent entertainment to children by noting that the report demonstrates that retailers have done an effective job in implementing voluntary ratings education and enforcement programs for video games. He said that EMA accepts the challenge to extend that performance to the retailing of DVDs.

"We are very gratified, but frankly not surprised, by the FTC’s findings that video game retailers have demonstrably and significantly increased the level of enforcement of the ‘Mature’ rating for video games at the point of sale," Andersen stated. "Retailers have improved their enforcement of store policies restricting the sale of Mature-rated games by 362% – from a 16% to a 58% turn-down rate – since the FTC’s first shopping survey in 2000 and almost doubled the turn-down rate since the last survey in the fall of 2003," Andersen declared. "EMA is dedicated to replicating that success in the R-rated DVD sales market."

Andersen noted that major video game retailers last year adopted the "Commitment to Parents" a package of ratings education and enforcement initiatives, including twice-yearly secret shops of participating retailers.

"Retailers have honed their focus on video game ratings enforcement and invested heavily in ensuring widespread adoption of video game ratings enforcement," Andersen said. "As noted by the FTC, EMA has already committed to build on that success by extending to DVD retailing those programs that have been used effectively to increase voluntary video game ratings education and enforcement."

Andersen stated that, in addition to promoting voluntary ratings education and enforcement programs for video game and DVD sales and rentals, EMA publicizes its "Look, Play, Limit, Control" guidance and co-sponsors the annual Entertainment Ratings & Labeling Awareness Month.

"The FTC also highlighted several other areas that need the attention of video game and DVD retailers," Andersen stated. "EMA is committed to examining these recommendations closely and encouraging retailer adoption of the recommendations, where appropriate."

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