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EA: German ratings are "censorship"

VP calls for the country to ditch current USK rating system and adopt PEGI system instead

EA executive VP and GM of international publishing Gerhard Florin has publicly demanded that Germany ditch its USK rating system and adopt PEGI instead - a system that would allow publishers to suggest ratings for games.

"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."

However, USK head Marek Brunner disagrees, 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. There's 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, such as Gears of War 2, from entering Germany's shops.

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Robert Purchese

Senior Staff Writer

Bertie is senior staff writer and Eurogamer's Poland-and-dragons correspondent. He's part of the furniture here, a friendly chair, and reports on all kinds of things, the stranger the better.

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