PEGI goes strong in Austria

At the meeting of the Viennese provincial government on 13 November 2007, an amendment to the Viennese Youth Protection Act was decided upon, to provide better protection for young people in connection with videogames.

The amendment prescribes that videogames can only be sold to young people of a certain age if the age rating clearly indicates that they are suitable for people of that age. Vienna has already raised the subject in the Family and Youth State Consultants’ Meeting in order to achieve a pan-Austrian agreement beyond the Youth Protection Act coordinated between Vienna, Lower Austria and the Burgenland.

This amendment was based on recommendations of a task force, consisting of experts in various specialist areas as well as all parties represented on the municipal council.ÖVUS (the Austrian Entertainment Software Association) was closely involved in the cooperation as a representative of the industry and with international support from the umbrella association and PEGI developer ISFE (the Interactive Software Federation of Europe).

“We managed to set a positive example which we can all be very proud of and which will certainly set the trend for other topics where the political reflex of banning often results in a negative impact, while the approach of informing and discussing results in a very positive one,” said Deputy Mayor Grete Laska.

“From the perspective of the industry, this is a first important step towards actively supporting the issues of youth protection and media competence. The cooperation with the political representatives of all factions was very fruitful and raises hopes of future good cooperation between politics and the industry", confirmedÖVUS President Dr. Niki Laber.

“As the international umbrella association, we are proud of the results which the local association has brought about within the first year of its inception. The cooperation between industry and politics in Austria is exemplary”, said Katja Mader, ISFE Marketing Manager.

The final resolution will be made initially in the committee of the Youth, Education, Information and Sport business group, and in January in the provincial parliament.

Contacts:

Austrian Entertainment Software Association

Aichhorngasse 14

1120 Vienna

E-mail: office@ovus.at

Web: www.ovus.at

EVA GASSNER

Press secretary to the Deputy Mayor Grete Laska

Tel.: +431-4000/81850

E-mail: eva.gassner@wien.gv.at

Katja Mader

Marketing Manager

Interactive Software Federation of Europe (ISFE)Brussels, Belgium

Tel: +32 2 513 57 77

Fax:+32 2 502 74 62

E-mail: katja.mader@isfe.eu

Web: www.pegi.info

Web: www.pegionline.eu

About ISFE

Established in 1998 and registered in 2002 under Belgian law as an international association with scientific and pedagogical purposes, ISFE (the Interactive Software Federation of Europe) represents the interests of the interactive software sector throughout the 27 EU Member States plus Norway, Iceland, Switzerland and Liechtenstein. Today, ISFE membership comprises 13 major publishers of interactive software as well as 13 interactive software trade associations throughout Europe.

ISFE has been running the Pan-European Game Information (PEGI) system since 2003 (see www.pegi.info). PEGI provides an age rating recommendation system intended to inform European parents regarding content that is suitable for their children. As a classification system PEGI supports informed adult choice and does not censor content.

For more information:

Katja Mader

15 rue Guimard

B-1040 Brussels

Tel: + 32 2 513 57 77

e-mail: katja.mader@isfe.eu


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