Feeds

Combat games disrespect war laws, report claims

Virtual troops should play by the same rules real ones do

Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable

Videogames should respect the real-world rules governing wars, a report has concluded, following research into how many videogames break them.

A study of 20 titles, including many from the Call of Duty and Tom Clancy series, carried out by Pro Juvenile – an organisation which aims to protect kids from unlimited videogame violence - and Trial, which fights to prevent people who commit war crimes getting away with it, found that most of the games contained “elements that violate... international standards”.

The two bodies used specialists in international humanitarian law to identify videogame violations, the most frequent being a disregard for “the legal principles of distinction and proportionality” – dropping 1000 bombs on crowded town just to kill one sniper, for example.

Intentionally directing attacks against civilians and religious buildings are two other war law no-nos that often appeared in the 20 videogames, the organisations claimed. Cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment, and/or torture cropped up frequently too.

Some of the 20 titles examined did, however, “incorporate rules that encourage the gamer to respect human rights and international humanitarian law”.

Pro Juvenile and Trial are particularly worried about the alleged violations within videogames because war games – unlike books or films - require the player to take an active role. Many are increasingly used by the military as training tools, the report added.

Both bodies called for videogame developers to avoid creating in-game situations that lead to violations of recognised laws regulating armed conflicts.

“It would mean a wasted opportunity if the virtual space transmitted the illusion of impunity for unlimited violence in armed conflicts,” the report concluded.

The full report Playing by the Rules: Applying International Humanitarian Law to Video and Computer Games is available to view online (PDF) now. ®

Application security programs and practises

More from The Register

next story
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
For Lenovo US, 8-inch Windows tablets are DEAD – long live 8-inch Windows tablets
Reports it's killing off smaller slabs are greatly exaggerated
Microsoft unsheathes cheap Android-killer: Behold, the Lumia 530
Say it with us: I'm King of the Landfill-ill-ill-ill
Cheer up, Nokia fans. It can start making mobes again in 18 months
The real winner of the Nokia sale is *drumroll* ... Nokia
Seventh-gen SPARC silicon will accelerate Oracle databases
Uncle Larry's mutually-optimised stack to become clearer in August
EU dons gloves, pokes Google's deals with Android mobe makers
El Reg cops a squint at investigatory letters
Apple orders huge MOUNTAIN of 80 MILLION 'Air' iPhone 6s
Bigger, harder trouser bulges foretold for fanbois
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.