Don't Drunk the Kids
I have been role playing for almost 40 years. I remember when ... and that is enough said. That being the case I like a variety of RPG experiences. My gaming clan is a multi-gaming clan. Our main focus right now is in The Secret World, Star Trek Online, and Star Wars: the Old Republic. One of those games is rated as Mature in the ESRB or PEGI 18. Some games are even rated Adult Only (in example: Call of Duty World at War). Many games are now also rated Mature because those of us that started off with Pong, Missile Command, Joust, and Pack-Man are now two or even three times the age of 21.
Currently Guild Launch attempts to make sure all members are at least 13, but the games available, the games played by the working employed people, are likely to be for those over 18 who have those under 18 in the house. And let's face it, there is no way to get a 13 year old to verify their age with their credit card - or there shouldn't be. But we have a moral, if not a legal, obligation to consider age appropriate material when setting up a posting system. To allow families to participate in the same guild, while still making room for the difference between mature interests and those they share with their teens.
What I am recommending:
1) The ability to request birth date on the member application.
2) The ability to set which ratings system the guild will use as a standard (ESRB or PEGI).
3) The ability to create forums, gallery sections, and automatically tag character biographies from games based on the game rating.
4) The ability of a member to check their post or image as being within a certain rating.
5) The ability of a moderator or admin to edit the rating of posted materials accordingly.
6) The ability to access forums, gallery sections, and character biographies be based on the ESRB rating.
7) Guilds would have the option not to set a rating system for their site, and not bother with these mechanics.
Ratings available for Euro-centered gamers would be: Rating Pending, General, PEGI 12, PEGI 16, and PEGI 18. Ratings available for American centered gamers would be: Rating Pending, General, Teen, Mature, Adults Only. Rating Pending and General are categories of necessity to cover general public areas where best behavior is always expected (and language filters should be on fingers) and games that have not been rated.
Below are the PEGI and ESRB ratings that would apply to Guild Launch supported communities.
Pan European Game Information
PEGI 12: Videogames that show violence of a slightly more graphic nature towards fantasy character and/or non graphic violence towards human-looking characters or recognisable animals, as well as videogames that show nudity of a slightly more graphic nature would fall in this age category. Any bad language in this category must be mild and fall short of sexual expletives.
PEGI 16: This rating is applied once the depiction of violence (or sexual activity) reaches a stage that looks the same as would be expected in real life. More extreme bad language, the concept of the use of tobacco and drugs and the depiction of criminal activities can be content of games that are rated 16.
PEGI 18: The adult classification is applied when the level of violence reaches a stage where it becomes a depiction of gross violence and/or includes elements of specific types of violence. Gross violence is the most difficult to define since it can be very subjective in many cases, but in general terms it can be classed as the depictions of violence that would make the viewer feel a sense of revulsion.
Entertainment Software Ratings Board
TEEN: Content is generally suitable for ages 13 and up. May contain violence, suggestive themes, crude humor, minimal blood, simulated gambling and/or infrequent use of strong language.
MATURE: Content is generally suitable for ages 17 and up. May contain intense violence, blood and gore, sexual content and/or strong language.
ADULTS ONLY: Content suitable only for adults ages 18 and up. May include prolonged scenes of intense violence, graphic sexual content and/or gambling with real currency.
RATING PENDING: Not yet assigned a final ESRB rating. Appears only in advertising, marketing and promotional materials related to a game that is expected to carry an ESRB rating, and should be replaced by a game's rating once it has been assigned.
This didn’t reach the required threshold to be bumped up to review. :( We will gladly revisit it if it’s resubmitted and gets the required votes, though!
More information can be found here: http://guildlaunch.uservoice.com/knowledgebase/articles/366826-how-does-the-feature-request-system-work
There are manual workarounds for this as well – it can be managed with age-specific permission groups on the Admin Menu → Permissions → Permission Groups area of your site. Adding that and a required question on the application asking a user’s age and you can manually regulate it.
Also, keep in mind that our TOS prohibits obscene, indecent, inflammatory, pornographic or profane material, amongst other things. More information on this can be found here: https://www.guildlaunch.com/about-us/terms-of-service/
And it is always better to practice self regulation before being forced to have government regulation.