Chain stores win praise for well-timed video policy

WASHINGTON,DC: Entertainment companies found themselves in an unfavorable spotlight last week following the release of a Federal Trade Commission report criticizing the industry for marketing violent and sexually explicit products to kids.

WASHINGTON,DC: Entertainment companies found themselves in an unfavorable spotlight last week following the release of a Federal Trade Commission report criticizing the industry for marketing violent and sexually explicit products to kids.

WASHINGTON,DC: Entertainment companies found themselves in an unfavorable spotlight last week following the release of a Federal Trade Commission report criticizing the industry for marketing violent and sexually explicit products to kids.

But Kmart and Wal-Mart both came out winners by announcing new policies of their own, tightening up on the ability of minors to buy violent video games - four days before the report was published.

Kmart's new policy was announced at a press conference attended by Senator Sam Brownback (R-KS) and Senator Jeff Sessions (R-AL), both critics of the entertainment industry. It requires minors purchasing games rated 'M' (for mature) to be accompanied by a parent.

Kmart spokesman Frank Buscemi said his company had been exploring the issue for the past six months after it picked up on rising concern by parents and legislators.

Even though he claimed the timing was coincidental, Buscemi did say, 'It brought us quite a bit of attention.' He estimated his company had talked to over 100 media outlets through the middle of last week, with the MWW Group helping to handle PR for the announcement.

Right after Kmart made its announcement, Wal-Mart followed suit. Since the report was published, Sears and Montgomery Ward have gone a step further by stopping sales of M-rated games in their stores.



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