The Video Standards Council has confirmed that the proposed changes to the UK video games age ratings system that will make PEGI legally enforceable will not now be put in place until April 1st 2011.
The delay has been blamed on the fact that while the Digital Economy Act has been passed it has not yet been “made effective”.
The most recent estimates claimed that the changes would come into effect this October.
Here’s the VSC statement obtained by MCV in full:
“The BBFC have approached the UK Government expressing concern that games rated PEGI 18 will be released in the UK without BBFC certification.
“The Digital Economy Act has been passed in the UK but has not yet been made effective. This means there is no change in the procedure for releasing games in the UK. If a game is rated PEGI 18 it must be submitted to the BBFC for a legal classification. This is irrespective of whether it contains exempt content as it reflects the voluntary agreement made by the games industry to avoid confusion over 18 rated games. Games must also be submitted to the BBFC if the contain any extraneous video which is not part of the game. This includes trailers.
“The Government has said the legislative change is likely to be implemented on April 1st 2011. The VSC is involved in the discussions regarding the implementation of the new legislation and will ensure that all coders are made aware of the changes to the procedure in good time to allow submissions to be adjusted. In the mean time please continue with your submissions in the same way that you have always done until the VCS advises differently.
“It is important to stress that no games must appear for sale in UK shops with aPEGI 18 logo prior to April 1st 2011.”