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US violent game tax proposal thrown out

Oklahoma lawmaker: "It's not a good idea".

A proposed bill to impose a one per cent tax on violent video games in the US state of Oklahoma has failed to become to law.

As reported earlier this month, State Representative William Fourkiller had suggested that any game with an ESRB rating of Teen or above should be subject to the new levy. All revenue would then go to fighting childhood obesity and bullying.

According to Ars Technica, the bill was later tweaked to focus on creating a task force looking into video games' relationship to the two aforementioned issues, but the Oklahoma House Revenue and Tax Subcommittee voted it down this week by a margin of 5-6.

In the minutes from the meeting Representative Pat Owenby asked Fourkiller, "Why just video games? Why not French fries or rap music or movies?"

Fourkiller replied, "We have to start somewhere. There's no magic bullet that will solve these issues, but I want to raise awareness of these two issues."

Representative Mike Reynolds then chimed, saying "It's not a good idea. We could have a task force on a multitude of reasons children are obese."

This isn't the first time a tax on violent games has been proposed in a US state. A similar bill failed to become law in New Mexico back in 2008.

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Fred Dutton avatar

Fred Dutton

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Fred Dutton was Eurogamer's US news editor, based in Washington DC.

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