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Gov videogame report backs BBFC

BBFC has "widespread recognition," finds government

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A single videogame classification system controlled by the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) is the best option for the UK, according to a government report.

The Committee of Culture, Media and Sport, in its report Harmful Content on the Internet and in Video Games, admitted the separate videogame labelling systems used by the BBFC and Pan European Game Information (Pegi) are both “workable in principle”.

But it concluded that the BBFC already has widespread recognition and statutory backing, giving it the edge over Pegi.

For example, most people are familiar with the BBFC’s age specific logos, but some are confused by Pegi’s pictogram labels signifying videogame content.

“We therefore agree that the BBFC should continue to rate games with adult content,” said the report. It also recommended that “online distributors should be encouraged to take advantage of the BBFC Online scheme,” which was launched back in May.

The outcome will be disappointing the European Leisure Software Publishers Association, backers of the Pegi system. However, it’ll do little to end the feud that Margaret Hodge, Minister for Culture, Creative Industries and Tourism, recently suggested exists between the BBFC and ELSPA over videogame classification.

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