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EA calls German ratings "censorship"

USK under fire from fervent Florin.

Dark blue icons of video game controllers on a light blue background
Image credit: Eurogamer

EA Euro-boss Gerhard Florin has publicly demanded that Germany ditch its USK rating system and adopt PEGI instead.

This would allow publishers to suggest ratings for games, he reckons.

"What we're doing here is censorship," Florin, talking about the current system, told Spiegel Online, "And no one complains.

"When we talk about games here it's about violence or their alleged addictiveness, and not about their cultural status. The few good studios are asking themselves why they should stay here anyway."

USK bigwig Marek Brunner disagrees, naturally - and told Eurogamer Germany there are "no plans" to move to a PEGI system.

"It's hard when half-truths are being used," said Brunner. "They say the USK does this wrong, the USK does that bad and why doesn't this get a rating?"

Brunner added that blaming the USK without acknowledging the role that the BPjM (Bundesprüfstelle für jugendgefährdende Medien - the government's Federal Department for Media Harmful to Young Persons) has on game ratings - is wrong.

Apparently there's quite a lot of interference from criminal law too - before USK even gets a look at the games.

Germany remains one of the stricter territories in Europe, enforcing a no-blood policy that has stopped many titles, like Gears of War 2, from entering Germany's shops.

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