@deviates1080 I hope you're right, the government is a touchy subject for many at the moment and I'd like nothing more than to see Britain become even more well known for its quality game and software development
All Party Parliamentary Group for the Computer and Video Games Industry formed "to champion" the game-development sector.
When politicians become involved in debates around video games, it is often for all the wrong reasons. However, as the games industry has grown in financial clout, politicians in the UK have started to reevaluate their views of the industry. The latest evidence of this is an All Party Parliamentary group that has been set up with the support of Tiga, the UK's game development trade association.
Chaired by Bill Olner, outgoing Labour MP for Nuneaton, the group's remit is "to provide a forum to discuss business issues affecting video games software developers, to develop policies to enhance the sector, and to champion an industry that responsibly creates content for an audience ranging from children to adults."
Along with Olner, the group will be run by Lord Putnam of Queensgate, John Whittingdale MP, Phillip Davies MP--who are all vice chairmen of the new group--and Nick Palmer MP, who will act as treasurer. Olner praised Tiga for leading the creation of this new group saying, "All-Party Groups can be a highly effective vehicle to raise and discuss issues amongst interested Parliamentarians...the entire All Party Parliamentary Group is looking forward to working with Tiga in discussing issues crucial to the video games industry."
Richard Wilson, Tiga's CEO, was equally optimistic when it came to assessing the impact the group might have in the future. "The establishment of the All Party Group on the Computer and Video Games Industry will ensure that issues affecting the sector, including the tax system, skill needs, and industry-academia links, are raised still more effectively in Parliament and government," he said.
The formation comes days after the newly appointed Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport acknowledged the importance of the games industry in Parliament and confirmed that the government was looking at introducing further tax breaks for UK game development. This issue, as well as that of game classification, is likely to be addressed next week when the government's Digital Britain report is published.
@Chickenesta I'm very familiar with APPGs, I worked closely with one and had a minor involvement in the launch of another recently. I don't need a website to explain to me how they work.Reports, oral evidence etc are the methods they'll use to get the whole Houses attention. Without these the work they do would be pointless. That's just obvious. Detract from their job?? APPGs as a way of furthering issues has been part of an MPs jobs for years, and has proven successful. Who'd have thought it, the Genocide Prevention group needing to travel abroad...where there might actually be some issues of genocide. I can't see the need for too many trips for a group dealing with the domestic games industry, can you? As far as the new rating system goes, how is that bad? Games will be rated in a similar legal fashion to films and about time too, the old method of numerous mixed systems was outdated. In any case the APPG had no input into the decision to introduce the new ratings as the report was written up before it even existed. By the way, I'm not defending MPs.There are many I have little time for, but jumping on the bandwagon hating anything political is crazy. Especially this group, whose only intention in existence is to aid the industry. Tiga would have no involvement if this were otherwise. Your paranoia in general may be accurate (I nevver said it wasn't), but in this particular case it is misplaced.
@Deviates1080 taken from from the Genocide Prevention APPG's website, "APPGs will from time to time release reports, organise trips abroad, ask for written or oral evidence from bodies or individuals outside parliament or undertake other activities. By and large, as long as the activity is seen as parliamentary in nature the members and executive are free to undertake anything them deem to further the purpose of the group." hah, did you read that "free to undertake anything them deem to further the purpose of the group" Yes that sounds very free to me and who will be paying for these trips both domestic and abroad? who will be paying for the time it takes to compile these reports and request this information hm? Seems to me these groups merely detract MPs from other responsibilities while still getting paid. And today what else has the UK Government done, they're enforcing age restrictions on games which is a huge step really and the first sign of real regulation, we're probably only a few steps away from having legal objections to the content of some games which are then deemed as not appropriate for even 18 ratings? Care to take another look at our paranoia? I hope If and I feel more likely WHEN you read a news article where the British Government starts objecting to game content you'll realise that perhaps these people who had their nickers in a twist because they felt the government was starting to interfering might have been on to something.
@Chickenesta, APPGs are nothing more than forums for policies to be discussed. They have no real power, but can be pretty effective at bringing interested parties together. So they are informal groups of MPs in reality. They are nothing like think tanks, and to compare the two shows you (and many others here) have misunderstood what an APPG is. I'm pretty sure I've said this already, but hey why not one last time? If the group met up tomorrow and all agreed 'lets give a tax break/rise (whatever) to the industry,' it wouldn't happen. But if the suggestion had the groups support they could push Parliament to try and put it on the agenda. Its real 'power' or use is involving those outside the political process, in this case industry professionals, developers and other interested parties. That's what it can do, but if you fancy making a huge political conspiracy or talk about the HUGE cost to the economy one small APPG (out of hundreds that exist) be my guest....It's laughable though.
TTDog MPs have been swindling their expenses since they were given a standard wage in the late 1800s.
Hmmm , when politicians start getting intrested theres usually 2 reasons... publicity (good) or money (lots). I am also not to keen on them sticking thier fingers in this pie for the simple reason.... political correctness. I can almost see it now ' Ban this game as it offends left handed gamers ' , ' Ban that game as it discriminates against blind people '. Hope I am wrong, but politicians havent got a good track record in my books :P
Trying to divert attention from their low popularity ratings, the beating they took in the local and european elections and the small matter that they've been swindling their expenses for the last 15 years.
"This group isn't trying to control video games. They want to support the growth of the business sector in that particular area. If anything, this should eventually stimulate the emergence of more gaming companies." People keep saying that but how? how is this group going to increase the number of development studios or boost the quality of games? Tax breaks inherently solve nothing and I think currently many universities are offering great computer game related courses so not sure what they can do there there certainly isn't a lack of quality developers in the UK either. Im quite open to the idea of the government helping ANY industry especially one I enjoy so much but I don't see how this little groups going to lead to anything but further cost to the tax payer and lining the pockets of executives who arent going to pass on tax breaks to consumers/staff.
At last! For too long has the government ignored the video gaming sector, and I'm glad they've finally formed a group to push for the development of games in the UK. The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills didn't even have a video gaming liason until relatively recently. Video gaming is an important business, and needs support from the government to develop. This group isn't trying to control video games. They want to support the growth of the business sector in that particular area. If anything, this should eventually stimulate the emergence of more gaming companies.
deviates1080, this isnt an informal group its very much 'formal' and this group (or think tank) will have a budget for its work, this money has to be found somewhere. Is the economy which is suffering so badly at the moment going to see any real boost from this group? of course not, not quickly anyway. A tax break doesnt instantly improve the quality of games or boost employment most companies will carry on like they did when the VAT rate was decreased and pocket the extra money they saved. Ultimately what this is going to mean is the British government is going to be looking much more closely at the content of our games and we'll be seeing in the case of some games much harsher censorship. Its suprising this nanny state has let some of the stuff get past its respective radar for so long, FO3 references to drugs etc.
the APPG isn't taking control of gaming in the UK, nor is trying to tax the hell out of the industry. They are INFORMAL groups of MPs and Lords, with a like-minded agenda. If those in the group decided tomorrow to give the games industry a tax break it wouldn't happen. They have no more control in the legislative process than normal, but the group does provide a forum for politicians and professionals to discuss issues, in this case relating to games and the industry. Yes the politicians generally know nothing about this subject, but the whole point is to create a closer relationship between these interested MPs (likely to only be a total of 20 politicians from both Houses). Thus like for any other subject, the MPs and Lords involved will use industries pros for advice when giving a speech, EDM, QTs, or when pushing for legislative change. I can only see this as a good thing, people's knee jerk reaction to anything political is really sad.
We have no choices in these matters remember this is the UK and as a nation all we generally do is moan about it and put up with it. If you want something to change that would mean we have to get off our arses and do something about it. Maybe some positive change might come out of this, we know our UK games industry needs help, but we also know that ANY political involvement will mean money changes hands and this will not be above board.
Judging purely on this little summary, it seems like the aims of this group are in the right place. There will always be the risk that giving stiffs in suits an input into a creative industry will create conflicts and problems, but they seem to be quite conscious of that in their blurb. We are currently lacking both the skill base and the tax breaks needed in compete globally - a few months ago there were articles on the BBC site, and even on here I believe, saying so. Any group that looks to address these problems, especially if it's an all party group, might give the games industry a bit more clout to grow as best it can.
lovely to see my tax go toward such useless crap, we can't create 'groups' for everything that makes money or cuts CO2 emissions ffs
@ Bufta "confirmed that the government was looking at introducing further tax breaks for UK". Yes, higher taxes. Despite everything, the govt is stupid enough to stifle one of the UKs few growth industries. It would be like peanalising Areospace or weapons maufacterers.
This is the start of them putting more heavy tax on games, ill guarantee that! There's no other reason for the government to be involved, to say i hate the government of england would be the understatement of the century. Leave our hobby alone cretins!
The goverment needs to **** off. Why are they interfering with video games when they have better things to worry about. All they do all day is shout and look like idiots. Get your own money! I already pay tax's and all that jazz. Your the ones that have got us in this mess with all your crocked deals and giving yourself stupid amounts of pensions you get us out of it!
They have better things to worry about than gaming i agree with you nick15 they always interfere they don't understand a thing about the gaming community. There just trying to get there greedy mits on some money
Why does the government have to interfere with EVERYTHING these days. Seriously, you can't fart without the government putting an ad about it on TV/radio. Those MP's wan't to forget about this and concentrate on more pressing matters. Besides, they've all got their dirty hands in the trough anyway.
Seems some of them have finally actually acknowledged that the game industry deserves recognition on a respectable level, almost as much as the film and arts sectors. Gaming used to be a small niche where only a few per group would dabble in. Now it's virtually mainstream, with all age groups finding something they like. Besides....I'd rather play online with casual, friendly players than hardcore obsessives who want to "pwn" everything in a 100 mile radius
Ha ha you are joking me, do politicians KNOW anything about video games? or CARE? Maybe I'll forgive them if they get Kingdom Hearts reChain Of Memories and Dissidia released her next month
Yeah fair enough but there all old farts who know nothing about it and if they cant control it they make in illegil are band it. if they had poeple that respect gaming these poeple dont understand.
3D World magazine published an article about 6 months ago showing the decline in game development and investment in the industry in the UK due to bad legislation and poor tax cuts. The government is just too backward to handle modern business.
A good idea, the games development industry in the UK has been languishing under draconian tax laws since well... forever. The UK could become a major centre for games development, we certainly have the potential and the talent and this seems like a step forwards.
i dont want to be one of these people that pick fault in everything our Politicians do, but there must be something in this for them surely?
all it took for the government to lay off games was to realise how lucrative they are. Maybe they can bring in the money that is lost due to our squandered manufacturing industry.
Haha, just read through all the comments properly. Some people might want to look up exactly what APPGs doyou are so far off the mark it's hilarious. People blame Brown, the cabinet, government, Labour in general, and rightly so in some cases but the general public's political ignorance is a contributing factor.
There is an APPG for everything, hell I'm almost certain there is one for Cider. The launch of this group can only benefit the games industry, it identifies sympathetic politicians for the industry to lobby and will make sure it's easier (at least than before) to get pro-gaming issues on the agenda. After spending the last few months aiding in the setting up of a different APPG and seeing the impact it can have, I'm certain this is a good thing.
Hopefully this will help people who view gaming as a childish waste of time take gaming more seriously, and take the idea of people wanting to work in the game industry more seriously. I assume it'll also improve the financial situation of those in the industry. Sounds good to me then.
Why are people negative about this, it seems there just trying to help the industry in the same way they help the British film industry with things such as tax cuts.
Way to get those grubby hands deeper into the industry, start sucking those profits you fat educated dullards.
Christ's sakes. Sick of Gordon Brown & this useless government & now they are sticking their beak into my favourite hoobie? There is one reason why they are... MONEY. As the article said, the world is in recession, games are rising - they want in. They aren't going to do it for 'fun' are they?
Avalanche Studios co-founder says developer's ambition is for action, not moments that make players cry; steampunk-style game on hold. Full Story
- Posted May 15, 2013 2:33 pm GMT
4A Games creative director Andrew Prokhorov thanks Jason Rubin for telling the studio's story, but says, "We deserve the ratings we get." Full Story
- Posted May 16, 2013 8:44 pm GMT