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Physicians' Group Speaks on Games

September 21, 2000 | By Quang Hong

September 21, 2000 | By Quang Hong
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Reuters Health reported that a leading physicians' organization is calling for stricter videogame labeling. The American Academy of Family Physicians, the largest organization of family physicians in the U.S. representing nearly 90,000 family practitioners, called for clearer, more visible labels and more stringent restrictions on who can purchase what it deems "violent" videogames.

The AAFP asserts that the Entertainment Software Rating Board's self-monitored labeling system does not go far enough, and called for ratings labels to be larger and also color-coded, to help parents determine quickly and easily whether a game might be suitable for a child. In a statement, the academy "calls on all retailers to enforce the voluntary ratings systems and prohibit minors from buying, renting, or downloading mature-rated games." Some large retailers such as K-Mart, Wal-Mart, and Toys R Us have already made steps in this direction.

"America's children are caught in the cross-fire," said AAFP president Dr. Bruce Bagley. "We want to be sure America's children and youth are receiving positive messages, not negative ones."


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