Official Forumwarz Blog

The official blog for the web game, Forumwarz

You can play Forumwarz if you’re under 18!

From time to time, people ask about the content of Forumwarz, and why we don’t ensure that our players are 18 years of age. I feel like it’s time to responsd.

Remember that Forumwarz Inc. is a Canadian corporation, so we are only concerned about our own local laws. Having said that, a lot of what I’m about to say applies in the US as well.

It is not illegal to produce a game that has sexual or violent material, nor is it illegal to let people under the age of 18 play such games. It’s true that a copy of Grand Theft Auto might have a Mature 17+ rating on it, but those ratings are voluntary and the stores you purchase them at don’t have to enforce them by law.

Forumwarz’s content is not rated by the ESRB, the institution that commonly rates games. Why? I don’t think it’s fair for a bunch of people to sit down and say “this content is okay for 18-year-olds, but not 16-year-olds,” when everybody is different.

I can say with a lot of certainty that when I was 14 I would have played and enjoyed Forumwarz, and not been any worse for it. That’s why instead of silly and exploitable drop down boxes, we simply ask people to type in ‘I am not offended easily.’

I think that people understand their limits. They know what they enjoy and what they don’t. We tell potential users right off the bat that if they don’t like offensive content, don’t play our game. We even make it so that you can’t accidentally click ahead without reading it, as it has to be typed in exactly.

Now, in terms of Canadian law, we are not allowed to sell hard core pornography to minors (and we don’t.) But even if we were, it’s not clear how an Internet site is supposed to protect that. Local television stations here show pornographic material after midnight, for example. Are you telling me a 16-year-old never stays up that late?

Anyway, to make a long story short, nobody is going to shut down Forumwarz because their 14-year-old son saw a pair of breasts in our Flamebate forums. They have no legal right to.

Now, having said that, the issue of child pornography is different. Canada has laws that are more stringent than the United States with respect to child pornography. We must make sure that people aren’t even posting sexualized illustrations of children, let alone actual photographs or anything like that. We are doing our best to make sure people who post things like that are banned and the content is removed, but it’s possible we’ve missed cases from time to time. If you find any sexual content involving someone who you believe is under the age of 18, please report it to us and we will try to get it removed quickly.

Written by eviltrout

January 14, 2009 at 8:17 PM

Posted in Home

Tagged with , ,

15 Responses

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  1. Pedophiles r not kewl

    lol

    January 14, 2009 at 8:17 PM

  2. Is it okay to show pictures of under age dolphin vaginas?

    Manphin

    January 14, 2009 at 8:17 PM

  3. One of the best things about forumwarz is that it’s not beholden to all that nanny group tomfoolery. The ESRB is fine and all and niggles aside it’s mostly a good thing, but the cool thing about forumwarz’ indie status is it doesn’t have corporate overlords dictating the content be in an allowable margin of fucked up. Please keep it that way!

    Bill Gates

    January 14, 2009 at 8:17 PM

  4. UNBAN ANGY HOBO
    BAN PATCH THE DARKNUT

    BRAN FAN

    January 14, 2009 at 8:17 PM

  5. "We must make sure that people aren’t even posting sexualized illustrations of children, let alone actual photographs or anything like that."

    When you say/type that, does that mean realistic depictions (like, say, if you nuded a kid in those sketch-making photo-booths, or just anyone who can draw that proportionatly*), or does this extend to an animu BAN on teh loliz?

    *Google this word; some interesting results, including punishment and ‘squids’.

    TJF588

    January 14, 2009 at 8:17 PM

  6. lmao, at the image that banned me, it was really sexualy explicit… much like patch photos :D keep me banned, ban the others aswell

    Angry_hobo

    January 14, 2009 at 8:17 PM

  7. Manphin: They’re not human, so go right ahead.
    TJF588: The laws don’t care if it’s photos, animu, or 5 minutes in MS Paint. It’s all illegal.

    ET_PHONE_HOME

    January 14, 2009 at 8:17 PM

  8. From what I understand, the ESRB is actually made up of game industry peeps. They created it to voluntarily self-police the content so that the government wouldn’t come in and do it. So no matter how you feel about the ratings, you have to admit that they do a good job of looking like they are trying to do something : )

    KrackAddict

    January 14, 2009 at 8:17 PM

  9. As dreaded as the DMCA is by a lot of people in the tech community, it makes a good place for web sites like this one to hide. They have a very relaxed definition of "internet service provider" and as an internet service provider the web site is exempt from a lot of copyright issues. A take-down notice has to be served to the web site and the web site has a certain amount of time to comply. But this prevents the web site from being responsible for everything that users post.

    But the DMCA is an American law. I’m not sure if Canada has anything similar.

    KrackAddict

    January 14, 2009 at 8:17 PM

  10. I wonder how the Queen feels about this?

    was

    January 14, 2009 at 8:17 PM

  11. My people are free!

    Raepdog

    January 14, 2009 at 8:17 PM

  12. @BillGates – That’s why I love this game. XD

    @KrackAddict – I actually think they added a few ‘gamers’ into the ESRB mix so it’s a little bit more fair, or something like that. I will admit that I’d rather the ESRB rating the games than the government, but that’s just my opinion.

    To be honest I think America is the only place in the entire fucking world where seeing a pair of breasts is considered a bad thing. Jesus I need to get out of here…

    Sick_Hacker

    January 14, 2009 at 8:17 PM

  13. I like the esrb but just like the mpaa, the problem is that the highest ratings all but kill sales. If forumwarz was a mainstream commercial product, and what with forumwarz having all sorts of questionable content from deviant sex to suicide to terrorism, it’d be looking at an AO rating until concessions were made and the content was wussified to appease the board. It’s great that forumwarz doesn’t have to decide between awesomely edgy content or playing it safe.

    Bill Gates

    January 14, 2009 at 8:17 PM

  14. Thank you ET for not censoring FW or making it 18+.
    I greatly appreciate it.

    DarkDespair5

    January 14, 2009 at 8:17 PM

  15. I am actually cool with this.

    Xylon

    January 14, 2009 at 8:17 PM


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