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Northern Territory gov to consider R18+ classification

While the Senate has passed legislation to introduce an R18+ classification, each state and territory in Australia also needs to pass its own R18+ games classification legislation.

The R18+ classification for games will be put before the Northern Territory government this week.

The amendments to the Classification of Publications, Films and Computer Games Bill include new guidelines for computer games, which are due to come into effect January 1 next year.

The amendments were passed by the Senate in June this year.

Each state and territory in Australia also needs to pass its own R18+ games classification legislation by the end of 2012 to ensure regulation of the legislation.

NSW passed its legislation in September this year.

Games will be classified under six ratings:

• G
• PG
• M
• MA 15+
• R18+
• RC (refused classification)

“The R18+ classification recognised that the gaming community is diverse and adult gamers will now be able to purchase games of an adult nature,” John Elferink, Northern Territory Attorney-General, said in a statement.

“It also provides guidance for adults purchasing games to make an informed decision about whether the computer game is something they want to view or use and if it is appropriate for young members of their family.”

The reforms were originally floated in 2009 when the Attorney-General’s department released a discussion paper proposing the introduction of the R18+ classification.

A total of 58,437 submissions were received, with 98 per cent of submissions supporting the classification. The Attorney-General’s department revealed around 34,938 of those submissions in support of the rating had been received via EB Games’ in-store campaign.

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