Violence in the media has been an extremely controversial topic for countless years, a topic which has, ironically, been receiving more media attention as of late. To combat the claims that the videogame industry has been marketing violent games to children, a committee has been formed involving such members as Electronic Arts, 3DO, Infinite Machine, LucasArts, Ronin, Konami, and an MIT media studies professor, Dr. Henry Jenkins.
The committee has made it clear that they will not debate the question that media violence affects children. They will, however, look into the claims that violent games have been marketed to children and will attempt to make the ESRB ratings more widely considered when creating and purchasing games. Additionally, the committee will serve to unify developers when the videogame industry receives negative media coverage. This will reduce the confusion that currently exists about the game industry's stance on such issues as the recent associations to child shootings and the FTC report that violent games had been marketed to children.
Among the other goals set forth by the Violence Committee are the building of awareness as games as an art form, to be treated the same way as other true art forms, the shedding of light on the positive aspects of games, and the shifting of focus to the existing body of research on both the positive and negative aspects of violent media. Those interested in more details on the committee can find the committee's website here. With the growing maturity of the storylines in RPGs, every RPGamer owes it to himself or herself to keep updated on the current political state of videogames -- otherwise the stories we love could disappear from that media forever.