Software group taps firm to promote ratings system

LOS ANGELES: Responding to growing concerns over violence in video games, the Interactive Digital Software Association (IDSA) has hired Greer, Margolis, Mitchell, Burns & Associates for an outreach and educational campaign designed to raise awareness of the group’s rating system.

LOS ANGELES: Responding to growing concerns over violence in video games, the Interactive Digital Software Association (IDSA) has hired Greer, Margolis, Mitchell, Burns & Associates for an outreach and educational campaign designed to raise awareness of the group’s rating system.

LOS ANGELES: Responding to growing concerns over violence in video

games, the Interactive Digital Software Association (IDSA) has hired

Greer, Margolis, Mitchell, Burns & Associates for an outreach and

educational campaign designed to raise awareness of the group’s rating

system.



The campaign is set to begin next month, just weeks before Sen. Joseph

Lieberman releases his annual report on excessively violent games. But

the IDSA insisted the campaign is not a preemptive strike.



’This is part of a much bigger effort in the post-Columbine period,’

said IDSA president Douglas Lowenstein. ’We made a decision way back in

the spring when I testified before the Senate that we were going to step

up our efforts to promote the ratings system. It was clear to us that

awareness levels were unacceptably low.’



The system in question is the Entertainment Software Ratings Board,

which evaluates game content and gives titles ratings ranging from E

(for ’everyone’) to M (for mature audiences). The ratings system has

been in place for years and is part of an effort by the industry as a

whole to respond to concerns about the impact games have on

children.



’We’ve been turning out a steady stream of stuff which, on a collective

basis, represents a strong response to the concerns Lieberman has

year-in and year-out,’ Lowenstein said.



Greer, Margolis SVP Roy Behr said the campaign will be aimed at

consumers.



’Its purpose is to educate the public about the ratings system and how

to properly use it,’ he said, adding that it will involve a range of

communication vehicles, including PSAs and media outreach.



The IDSA campaign got off to a great start when The New York Times ran a

story about the industry’s self-policing efforts. Lowenstein said the

story was generated by the Times and was not part of the overall

education campaign.



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