Games let you commit “violations of international law,” says human rights groups

Monday, 23rd November 2009 13:36 GMT By Johnny Cullen


In a recent report just released, via the BBC, two human rights organisations has accused videogames of letting you commit “violations of international law.

The groups Trial and Pro Juventute carried out the study, and played games like Call of Duty 4, 24: The Game, Far Cry 2 and Metal Gear Solid, to name a few.

The list of games were played to know if “whether certain scenes and acts committed by players would constitute violations of international law if they were real, rather than virtual.”

However, Rock Paper Shotgun writer John Walker has come out and defend the role videogames have, citing the airport level in Modern Warfare 2 as an example of the mature content in gaming.

“For all those who mowed down citizens in Modern Warfare 2′s controversial airport level, I have the sneaking suspicion that not a great deal of them think this is lawful, nor appropriate, behaviour.”

“Whether or not the rules of war are included in the game should be based entirely on whether that improves the experience for the player,” said Jim Rossignol of RPS.

Find more through the link.

Thanks, freedoms_stain.



  1. Sethos

    See, now we really needed that SDK for the PC version – Someone have to do a level, where you have to mow down all those human rights groups, whiners, moaners and the like with a weapon of your choice.

    Oh well, I’m off to kill everyone at an airport, brb.

    #1 5 years ago
  2. Scyrenn

    No shit, Sherlock… –’

    Games are “fun”, says I.

    #2 5 years ago
  3. jnms

    I dread to think what these people think of kids playing ‘cops and robbers’, or god forbid the politically incorrect ‘cowboys and indians’.

    “Violation of International Law” – the fucking dicks.

    #3 5 years ago
  4. freedoms_stain

    I would love someone to do a study that shows the number of people who have played violent games then commit crimes of whatever “level” vs people who have eaten toast and committed crimes at the same level.

    I think the results would be very telling.

    #4 5 years ago
  5. polygem

    ha ha i really can´t believe whats going on these days! this is all about a fake, virtual experience. just like in a movie. there is no difference at all. all these people complaining are just really really narrow minded. i feel very sorry for them. what about the real violations like animal abuse and factory farming so many so called human rights activists are tolerating and even supporting with their consuming behaviour…leave videogames alone and leave it for something it is: fun and entertainment- nothing more and nothing less. there are real problems to solve in this world so don´t waste your time…

    #5 5 years ago
  6. Freek

    The whole point of the those games is that they putt you in morally questionable situations.

    Games aren’t yet as sophisticated as books and movies in exploring those types of experiences but it is interesting that they are trying.

    #6 5 years ago
  7. Eregol

    And the lack of common sense award goes to……

    Seriously. What is this world coming to?
    It’s gotten to the point that nobody is allowed to think for themselves.
    If we have to have numpties like this make all our decisions for us we really are all going to hell in a handcart.

    #7 5 years ago
  8. Dralen

    Three words, It’s-not-real!

    #8 5 years ago
  9. Phoenixblight

    Groups like these are the reason why I am so anti censorship. We have to think for ourselves not morons like these so they can become another government group to fine our media for making games that are against “international law”

    #9 5 years ago
  10. Freek

    And MW2 does include rules if you are playing as a US or UK soldier, it’s game over as soon as you hit even 1 civilian.

    #10 5 years ago
  11. Ansob

    They have a point, but they also don’t have a point.

    They have a point because it should be important for your character to respect international law if the game is a realistic military simulation where you play a member of the conventional armed forces of a signatory of the Geneva convention.

    They don’t have a point because most of the games they looked at feature you playing either as someone outside of the remit of the convention (i.e. you’re a mercenary, who has pretty much no rights according to the Geneva convention; or you play as a member of a global taskforce specifically set up to be outside international law so you can go torture terrorists; or you’re playing the bad guys).

    I agree with Jim and John, though. It’s funny how it’s okay to criticise video games over this, but not movies (and supposedly because people are too stupid to know the different between real life and a video game, according to that article).

    #11 5 years ago
  12. BraveArse

    So does that mean I should have contacted the UN after “witnessing” the torture scene in Syriana?

    #12 5 years ago
  13. Eregol

    I lodged a complaint over Hotel Rwanda.

    No I didn’t. But I gather nothing would have happened if I did.

    #13 5 years ago
  14. Hunam

    Is post kill teabagging seen as a violation?

    #14 5 years ago
  15. Floms

    Hahahahahaha but the best game where you can kill people has to be GTA series, driving in the sidewalk priceless

    #15 5 years ago
  16. freedoms_stain

    So what do these guys want? For the game to end when you’ve beaten a certain %age of the enemy forces and offer the remainder quarter as per the international rules of war?

    #16 5 years ago
  17. TastyAcidMilkk

    commin from people who protect child molesters and killers etc thier ones too talk

    #17 5 years ago
  18. oem

    It’s a freaking game, a virtual reality… why don’t they concern their business about REAL war crimes taking place right now in the real world, idiots.

    #18 5 years ago
  19. Dannybuoy

    Books/films/plays/music have all been doing the same for years. So leave games alone you cock noses

    #19 5 years ago
  20. scuz

    for the love of the word “fuck” will the world get its head around the fact that pitting russia and america against each other is nothing new in the world of media, its about as interactive and thoughtful a scene as a dead duck.

    #20 5 years ago
  21. Eregol

    Russia and America don’t like each other?
    But, I’m in Britain!
    I’m right in the middle.
    Oh shit, oh shit, oh shit, oh shit, oh shit, oh shit, oh shit, oh shit, oh shit. oh shit, oh shit, oh shit, oh shit.

    I’ll be fine.

    #21 5 years ago
  22. polygem

    ok then…what about an international law court level. where you have to solve puzzles (questions from the judge) to avoid the electric chair…

    #22 5 years ago
  23. FeaturePreacher

    Hey, why wasn’t GTA 4 on the list? I’m pretty sure there are a good deal of violations there. I wonder if the guys at Rockstar feel slighted for not being included on this international who’s who list.

    #23 5 years ago
  24. OrbitMonkey

    GTA4 isn’t included as Niko only breaks the internal law’s of Liberty City. If he was too join the army, invade Iraq and toture a militia man; then they’d have been all over him…

    #24 5 years ago

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