Encyclopedia of Play in Today's Society

Encyclopedia of Play in Today's Society

Encyclopedias

Edited by: Rodney P. Carlisle

  • Publisher: SAGE Publications, Inc. |
  • Publication Year: 2009 |
  • Online Publication Date: May 18, 2009 |
  • DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.4135/9781412971935 |
  • Print ISBN: 9781412966702 |
  • Online ISBN: 9781412971935
  • View Hide Publication Details
    • Publisher: SAGE Publications, Inc. |
    • Pub. Year: 2009 |
    • Online Pub. Date: May 18, 2009 |
    • DOI: 10.4135/9781412971935 |
    • Print ISBN: 9781412966702 |
    • Online ISBN: 9781412971935

Abstract

CHOICE Outstanding Academic Title for 2009 — “This ground-breaking resource is strongly recommended for all libraries and health and welfare institutional depots; essential for university collections, especially those catering to social studies programs.” — Library Journal, STARRED Review. Children and adults spend a great deal of time in activities we think of as “play,” including games, sports, and hobbies. Without thinking about it very deeply, almost everyone would agree that such activities are fun, relaxing, and entertaining. However, play has many purposes that run much deeper than simple entertainment. For children, play has various functions such as competition, following rules, accepting defeat, choosing leaders, exercising leadership, practicing adult roles, and taking risks in order to reap rewards. For adults, many games and sports serve as ...

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  • Reader's Guide
  • Entries A-Z
  • Subject Index
  • Front Matter
  • Back Matter
    • Adult Games
    • Board Games
    • Card Games
    • Children's Games
    • History of Play
    • Outdoor Games and Amateur Sports
    • Play and Education
    • Play around the World
    • Psychology of Play
    • Sociology of Play
    • Toys
    • Toy Companies
    • Video and Online Games
    • A
    • B
    • C
    • D
    • E
    • F
    • G
    • H
    • I
    • J
    • K
    • L
    • M
    • N
    • O
    • P
    • Q
    • R
    • S
    • T
    • U
    • V
    • W
    • X
    • Y
    • Z


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    • Editorial Advisory Board

      Felicia McMahon, Ph.D., Department of Anthropology, Syracuse University

      Robert E. Rinehart, Ph.D., Department of Sport and Leisure Studies, University of Waikato

      George Scarlett, Ph.D., Eliot-Pearson Department of Child Development, Tufts University

      Brian Sutton-Smith, Ph.D., Resident Scholar, Strong National Musuem of Play

      Copyright

      View Copyright Page

      About the General Editor

      Rodney P. Carlisle, Ph.D.

      An expert in social history and prolific game player, Rodney P. Carlisle earned an A.B. in history at Harvard College, and a Ph.D. in history at the University of California at Berkeley. He taught for more than 30 years at Rutgers University, Camden, New Jersey, and is the cofounder of History Associates Incorporated. He is the author or editor of more than 35 books, including works in military history, maritime history, technology, and social history. Among the works he has authored are the Encyclopedia of Invention and Discovery, Eyewitness History to World War I, and the forthcoming Sovereignty at Sea. Among the encyclopedias and series that he has edited are the Encyclopedia of the Atomic Age, Encyclopedia of Intelligence and Counterintelligence, One Day in History, The Twenties, The Thirties, Encyclopedia of Politics: The Left and Right, and the forthcoming Handbooks to Life in America.

      Playing with Play

      We have created a word puzzle with the Encyclopedia of Play in Today's Society. The clues below are straightforward: You need to discern what P and W refer to and how the puzzle comes together. The solution is a quote from a leading scholar on the concepts of play, taken from a seminal work on the subject. Note: hyphenated words are counted as one word. We have added a few hints at the end of the clues.

      Girls' Play P7W83 Academic Learning and Play P1W7 Inter-Gender Play P4W93 Egypt P1W4 Chess and Variations of P16W36 Play and Literacy P1W4 Assyrian/Babylonian Culture P5W38 Dice P10W11 Europe 1960 to Present P5W54 Casino P3W22 Fantasy Play P2W2 Hockey (Amateur) P10W17 History of Playing Cards P10W10 Stilts P8W45 Dolls, Barbie and Others P16W7 Cricket (Amateur) P5W13 Faro P6W49 Bridge and Variations of P2W6 Inter-Gender Play P7W4 Europe, 1960 to Present P6W10 Games of Deception P15W34 I Spy P1W3 Inter-Gender Play P20W61 Bullying P7W11 Memory and Play P1W2 Play as Mock War, Psychology of P3W38 Games of Deception P1W13 Europe, 1900 to 1940 P2W3 Risk, the Game P2W12 Cuba P1W1 Montessori P34W19 Galoob P1W3 Hungary P1W5 Athletics (Amateur) P5W12 Human Relationships in Play P7W5 Role-Playing P1W4 India P11W63 Crosswords P3W5 Freud and Play P5W3 Europe, 1800 to 1900 P4W84 “Bad Play” P4W4 Golf (Amateur) P1W27 Wargames P3W64 Kenner P10W94 Israel P1W2 Europe, 1960 to Present P8W37 Croquet P5W4 Skat P8W35 Finger Games P4W71 Hornby P6W9 Gamesmanship P2W16 Australian Aborigines P5W5 Slapjack P1W6 Iraq P2W1 Common Adventure Concept P4W2 Soccer (Amateur) Worldwide P2W10 Games of Deception P13W13 Monopoly and Variations of P2W20 Car and Travel Games P8W25 Racing Demon P1W40 Adlerian Play Therapy P3W136

      Hint 1: There are 3 words in the solution not included in the clues above. You need to place them correctly: spoils, robs, creates.

      Hint 2: The following are the punctuation marks in the solution: 5 periods 1 colon 1 set of quotes 4 commas

      Hint 3: The quote solution author's initials are J.H. and an acronym for the seminal work is HLASOTPEIC. An anagram for the short title is: SHOLOM DUNE. Last hint: page 10.

      Preface

      Frankly, I was in shock when I suddenly received so much new information on play when I received the editor's proofs for the Encyclopedia of Play in Today's Society. For example, there are approximately 450 articles written by 130 authors from 22 countries. I had the excited feeling that the whole story of play that has baffled us all for so long might be finally solved.

      The encyclopedia articles in alphabetical order begin with Volume 1 “Academic Learning and Play” and end with Volume 2 “Ziginette,” which is a gambling card game. Clearly it was going to be hard to find anything missing in such a cauldron of multiplicitous ambiguity. But more importantly, it looks as if these volumes might now bring an ending to the old-fashioned view that play is not really very important. That is, we say conventionally that play might be fun but unlike religion, the arts, science, and politics, it is not really very serious for the human condition or even worthwhile for academic studies.

      Against this, I have been telling myself that, on the contrary, play is important because it heralds the beginning of civilization by imposing routines, rituals, and rules upon the expression of the universal primary and relentless adaptive emotions (loneliness, anger, fear, shock, disgust, and apathy). These emotions are basic in their raw character within the evolutionary struggles for survival.

      For example, without play you might have murder—with play, you have multiple, unique forms of bonding within which the violence is expressed within the rules. Imagine my excitement on reading on page 484 the article “Play Among Animals,” in which the author discusses various signals that animals make in pursuit of a morality that bonds them together, rather than driving them apart. And then, in an article on page 489 “Play and Evolution,” the author says: “it is sobering to realize that since both vertebrate and invertebrate animals engage to some extent in play, the potential for play goes back as far as 1.2 billion years.”

      Given the increasing number of toy museums around the world (including the Strong National Museum of Play in Rochester, New York), the development of university degrees (such as in the United Kingdom), and with play as a major topic for those who will be in charge of child play in the streets, we are perhaps beginning to give the topic of play the seriousness of a major cultural form that it deserves, which is testified to so remarkably by these two volumes.

      Brian Sutton-Smith, Ph.D.

      Introduction

      Children and adults spend a great deal of time in activities we think of as “play,” including games, sports, and hobbies. Without thinking about it very deeply, almost everyone would agree that such activities are fun, relaxing, and entertaining. However, as anthropologists, philosophers, psychologists, and other social thinkers have studied the role and function of play in different societies, and among different age groups, they have developed a wide range of theoretical explanations for why human beings and many animals engage in playful activities. The theoretic questions they raise suggest that simply to regard play as fun and entertainment misses the central role that play has in our lives. For a subject that we mostly consider a lighthearted one, the topic of play as a research topic has generated an extensive and sophisticated literature, exploring a range of penetrating questions.

      Play has many functions that run much deeper than simply “entertainment.” For children and many young animals, such as kittens and bear cubs, play clearly is part of the preparation for adult roles, including the manipulation of nature, hunting for food, peaceful interaction with others of the same species, or combat with those who are hostile. In humans, childhood play has many other functions as well. Among those are aspects of human interaction such as competition, following rules, accepting defeat, choosing leaders, exercising leadership, practicing adult roles, taking risks in order to reap rewards, and many others. Clearly, many childhood games and toys also assist in the learning of intellectual skills such as reading, arithmetic, and even gaining knowledge of such subjects as physics, geography, and history.

      Adults engage in play and games for many other reasons besides learning. Many games and sports serve as harmless releases of feelings of aggression, competition, and intergroup hostility. Many team sports and board games such as chess, as well as many contemporary computer games, have a basis in warfare. Other games represent forms of harmlessly experiencing risk-taking, while still others, such as gambling at Poker or Blackjack and active sports such as skiing and parachuting, can involve actual risks to fortune, life, or limb. Many games and toys represent forms of mastery over nature itself, and their ancient origins suggest ties to religion or to cycles of nature, such as planting and harvesting. The keeping of pets and playing with them can be seen as aspects of mastering nature.

      When such aspects of why we play are considered, the topic takes on a new light, going to questions about the very nature of the human condition. Do we play in order to avoid danger, or to experience it? Do we play as an escape from work, or do we work to engage in another form of play? Some people seem to be employed only in order to earn enough money to be able to enjoy their play activities, such as surfing, skiing, bowling, skydiving, or mountain climbing. Others indulge in a few sports and games only as a momentary escape from their workaday lives. Still others derive most or all of their income from an activity that for others would seem a form of play, such as artists, musicians, and athletes.

      Looked at as something common to the whole of humankind, play takes still greater significance. Every culture, it seems, has some unique forms of play, and most cultures seem to share some fundamental types of games and play. Such children's games as Leapfrog, and Rock Paper Scissors (or “Rochambeau”) are found all over the world. Are such worldwide forms of play a reflection of the spread of cultural artifacts from one society to another, or are the similarities in games, sports, and toys the result of varied reflections of the same underlying human nature expressed in similar ways in diverse cultures? Perhaps such common games represent both dispersion of culture and the underlying structure of human nature. What are the precise reasons why some games, toys, and sports have flourished and survived, while others appear to have died away with the passage of time?

      Some games, such as Chess and Backgammon, appear so perfectly conceived and developed that they have been played for centuries, while others, such as the gambling game of Faro, have had much shorter lives and have been largely supplanted by others. The historic origin of many games is known, while others remain shrouded in mystery. For example, we know that playing cards appeared rather suddenly in Europe around 1380 ce., but whether the idea of cards had been introduced from Asia, or whether they grew from fortune-telling decks, or whether fortune-telling tarot decks were a later development, is the subject of historical inquiry.

      One of the earliest theoretical treatments of play is that of the Dutch cultural historian Johan Huizinga (1872–1945), in his 1938 work Homo Ludens. In that study, Huizinga suggested that play as a form of contest involves both cooperation (in agreeing to rules) and competition (in leading to winners and losers). Play becomes a surrogate or harmless expression of the exercise of power. Another early writer who thought deeply about play was the Russian Lev Vygotsky (1896–1934). Among his contributions was his view that play represented ways of internalizing and understanding the world, and as such, play was an essential element in learning. Vygotsky's work underwent a revival in the West, with translations published in the 1960s and 1970s. Many modern educational psychologists have expanded on, or criticized, some of the perceptions and concepts brought up by Vygotsky. Jean Piaget's (1896–1980) monumental work, Play, Dreams, and Imitation provided structural criteria for evaluating play's development and the useful idea that play often consolidates new learning, even though play is not the domain where children actually learn.

      Using a different lens, Vygotsky gave to play a more important role, namely, the role of leading edge of development because play helps young children go beyond thinking solely in terms of what they can perceive directly in front of them and to think in terms of what they can imagine.

      The New Zealand-born educational theorist Brian Sutton-Smith (b. 1924) has studied play, using many ideas and concepts derived from the study of rhetoric. During an extensive academic career at Columbia University and the University of Pennsylvania, he produced numerous works on the subject of play, including The Ambiguity of Play (1997). Sutton-Smith sees seven different kinds of rhetoric at work in the “discourse” of play. Some rhetorics hold that play is a kind of adaptation, teaching skills or easing the passage or induction into different communities.

      Another view of play is that it is an expression of power, pursued in contests of prowess. Still another view holds that play is an expression of the working of fate or “Lady Luck,” as expressed in games of chance like Bingo, Poker, and Blackjack. Under another rhetoric, play is an extension of daydreaming, enacted in art. For some, play is just frivolity. In our modern society, adults tend to define play as a rhetoric of progress toward adulthood, whereas children have an entirely different rhetoric of play as a highly prized frivolous activity.

      Those ambivalent aspects of play often come into conflict in our times, but they need not. Sutton-Smith, now retired, has served as a consultant to television shows such as Captain Kangaroo and Nickelodeon, as well as to the Philadelphia “Please Touch” Museum.

      Educators have struggled with these underlying issues of the function of play as they attempt to capture the magic of play and harness it effectively in learning situations. Sometimes those efforts succeed, but the fact that children seek out and play games that are not always approved by adults, such as “playing doctor,” or engaging in dangerous activities such as climbing trees or clandestine swimming parties outside of adult supervision, suggests the underlying truth of Sutton-Smith's view of the ambiguities of play. Clearly, playing with an educational puzzle and roughhousing on the playground represent two entirely different “rhetorics” of play.

      In this encyclopedia, we have gathered together an international group of scholars and writers to provide access to the fascinating literature that has explored such questions of psychology, learning theory, game theory, and history in depth. In addition, we have provided entries that describe both adult and childhood play and games in dozens of cultures around the world and throughout history. Through articles about cultures as diverse as the ancient Middle East and modern Russia and China, and in nations as far-flung as India, Argentina, and France, the reader will find a guide to the common childhood and adult games and toys.

      As one might expect, many countries and cultures have adopted similar games. In many countries, for example, one can find variations on the famous American game Monopoly, with street names from diverse cities substituting for the familiar street names of Atlantic City, such as Boardwalk and Park Place. Games such as soccer have spread almost all over the world, while others, such as American baseball, have penetrated only a few societies.

      With its diversity of approximately 450 entries, this unique encyclopedia provides access not only to the sophisticated analyses of social thinkers like Huizinga, Vygotsky, and Sutton-Smith but to the wide variety of games, toys, sports, and entertainments found around the world.

      We have not attempted to include coverage of “professional” sports and sport teams but, instead, have included the hundreds of games played not to earn a living but to exercise all the aspects of play as an informal activity—from learning, through competition, mastery of nature, socialization, and cooperation. And simply enough, this encyclopedia explores play played for the fun of it.

      One caveat: There are thousands of games around the world, and no encyclopedia can include them all. We have made an earnest effort to include the most popular and widespread games—hundreds of them—in an attempt to provide a good representation.

      Rodney P. Carlisle General Editor

      Reader's Guide

      List of Entries

      List of Contributors

      Adams, Jeffery, Massey University

      Adams, Lynette, Sport Waitakere

      Adams, Suellen, University of Rhode Island

      Adler, Jennifer, City University of New York

      Apter, Michael John, Independent Scholar

      Baghurst, Timothy, University of Arkansas

      Barnhill, John, Independent Scholar

      Baron, Cynthia L., Northeastern University

      Barron, Carol M., Dublin City University

      Beck, Jack, Independent Scholar

      Behrenshausen, Bryan G., Kutztown University of Pennsylvania

      Bekoff, Marc, University of Colorado, Boulder

      Bell, Robert J., Ball State University

      Beresin, Anna, University of the Arts, London

      Biron, Dean, University of New England, Australia

      Bittarello, Maria Beatrice Independent Scholar

      Bonura, Kimberlee, Waiden University

      Breedlove, Marci M., University of Tennessee

      Breen, Barton J., Nyack College

      Brown, Fraser, Leeds Metropolitan University

      Brown, Harko Kerikeri High School

      Burger, Jean E. New York University

      Burghardt, Gordon M., University of Tennessee

      Buttery, David, Independent Scholar

      Calleja, Gordon, IT-University of Copenhagen, Denmark

      Caponegro, Ramona Anne, University of Florida

      Carr, Neil University of Otago

      Carr, Sarah University of Otago

      Cemore, Joanna J., Missouri State University

      Clements, Rhonda, Manhattanville College

      Cohen, Allison T., New York University

      Collins, Mary G Clemson University

      Cook, Daniel Thomas, Rutgers University

      Cooper, Abby, Australian National University

      Corfield, Justin, Geelong Grammar School

      Cossu, Andrea, Università di Trento Italy

      Cranwell, Keith A., University of Greenwich

      Crawford, Thomas, Claremont Graduate University

      Daw, Jessie, Northern State University

      Degroult, Nathalie Siena College

      Denes, Ilona, Central European University

      Deutsch, James I., Smithsonian Institution

      Dickman, Nathan Eric, University of Iowa

      Dubbels, Brock, University of Minnesota

      Dufer, Miriam D., Old Dominion University

      Dunkin, Jessica, Carleton University

      Dusenberry, Lisa, University of Florida

      Eckhoff, Angela, Clemson University

      Eliassen, Meredith, San Francisco State University

      Eversole, Theodore W. Independent Scholar

      Factor, June, University of Melbourne

      Farr, Daniel Randolph College

      Fehrle, Johannes, Albert-Ludwigs-Universität

      Flannery Quinn, Suzanne M., University of South Florida

      Fleming, Dan, University of Waikato

      Fogel, Curtis, University of Calgary

      Gallo, Ernesto, University of Turin University of Birmingham

      Galofaro, Francesco Bologna University

      Garrison, Joshua, University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh

      Gemeinhardt, Melissa, New Orleans University

      Gentner, Noah Ithaca College

      Golinkoff, Roberta Michnick, University of Delaware

      Gomez-Galisteo, M. Carmen, Universidad de Alcalá

      Grieve, Owen, Brunei University

      Groth, Miles Wagner College

      Hall, Susan University of the Incarnate Word

      Han, Myae University of Delaware

      Hansen, Gregory A., Arkansas State University

      Harbour, Vanessa, University of Winchester

      Hartle, Lynn, University of Central Florida

      Harvey, Jessamy University of London

      Hemphill, Joyce, University of Wisconsin, Madison

      Henry, Gage University of Georgia

      Hirsh-Pasek, Kathryn, Temple University

      Hutira, A. A., Youngstown State University

      Janssen, Diederik Floris, Independent Scholar

      Jarrett, Olga S. Georgia State University

      Jewkes, Abigail M., Hunter College, City University of New York

      Jones, Janice Kathleen, University of Southern Queensland

      Josephson, Bruce Baekseok Cultural College

      Judge, Larry, Ball State University

      Kindler, Vardit, Independent Scholar

      Kiuchi, Yuya, Michigan State University

      Kling, Helena, Educational Centre for Games in Israel

      Kozma, LuAnne, Michigan State University Museum

      Kte'pi, Bill, Independent Scholar

      Kücklich, Julian, University of the Arts London

      Kullman, Kim, University of Helsinki

      Laird, Jay, Northeastern University

      Lang, Diane E. Manhattanville College

      Laukaitis, John J., Loyola University Chicago

      Leandro, Mauricio, City University of New York

      Lee, Joon Sun, City University of New York

      Lester, Stuart, University of Gloucestershire

      Levi, Amiya Waldman Hebrew University, Jerusalem

      Lobera, Ana Luisa Baca, University of Puerto Rico

      Lowe, Virginia Independent Scholar

      MacCallum-Stewart, Esther, University of East London

      Maksudyan, Nazan Bogazici University

      Martin, Cathlena, University of Florida

      Martinez, Michelle, Sam Houston State University

      Matthews, Elizabeth, City University of New York

      McDonnell, Wayne G., New York University

      McKinty, Judy Independent Scholar

      McNamee, Gillian Dowley, Erikson Institute

      Medellin-Paz, Cristina M., City University of New York

      Medler, Ben, Georgia Institute of Technology

      Michalski, David, University of California, Davis

      Michon, Heather K., Independent Scholar

      Millbank, Anna-Marie, Independent Scholar

      Moore, Mary Ruth, University of the Incarnate Word

      Morris, Avigail, Ben Gurion University

      Morrison, Heidi, University of California, Santa Barbara

      Navidi, Ute, London Play, International Play Association

      Norman, Jason, Old Dominion University

      Nwokah, Eva E., University of North Carolina, Greensboro

      O'Donnell, Casey University of Georgia

      Osgerby, Bill, London Metropolitan University

      O'Shea, Gerad F., New York University

      Overholser, Lisa M., Indiana University

      Padula, Alessandra, Università degli Studi di L'Aquila, Italy

      Palmer, Sue, Leeds Metropolitan University

      Parsler, Justin, Brunei University

      Patel, Ashwin, Western State College of Colorado

      Patrouch, Joseph F., Florida International University

      Pope, Clive C, University of Waikato

      Pratt, Anastasia L., State University of New York

      Pringle, Richard George, University of Waikato

      Puente, Rogelio, Independent Scholar

      Ramsak, Mojca, Center for Biographic Research

      Reid, Jason, Ryerson University

      Reynolds, Daniel, University of California, Santa Barbara

      Ríos Orlandi, Yma N. Independent Scholar

      Roberts, Frank W. University of Texas, Austin

      Ryan, John S., University of New England Australia

      Sayer, Karen Anne, Leeds Trinity and All Saints

      Scheinholtz, Laura, University of Wisconsin, Madison

      Schneider, Sharon, Hofstra University

      Schott, Gareth, University of Waikato

      Shuffelton, Amy, University of Wisconsin, Whitewater

      Siedentop, Daryl Ohio State University

      Sluss, Dorothy Justus, James Madison University

      Smith, Dorsia, University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras

      Sobe, Noah W. Loyola University

      Stacy, Robert Independent Scholar

      Stanley, Christopher, Winston-Salem State University

      Stanzak, Steve, Indiana University

      Sterling, Linda K., Northwest Missouri State University

      Sutterby, John A., University of Texas, Brownsville

      Tanta, Kari J., Independent Scholar

      Terry, Jennifer, California State University, Sacramento

      Thorpe, Holly, University of Waikato

      Tobin, Samuel F., New School for Social Research

      Tredinnick, Luke, London Metropolitan University

      Trotti, Patrick, Independent Scholar

      Tsipursky, Gleb, University of North Carolina Chapel Hill

      Tucker, Elizabeth, Binghamton University

      Unger, Dallace W. Independent Scholar

      Valentin, Andrea University of Otago

      Valentine, Deborah S. Rutgers University

      Vaughn, Brandon K., University of Texas, Austin

      Walker, Christine M., University of Michigan

      Watrall, Ethan, Michigan State University

      Weintraub, Naomi, Hebrew University

      Welch, Wendy, University of Virginia, Wise

      Westgate, Christopher Joseph, Texas A&M University

      Willans, Becky, Thurrock and Basildon College

      Wong, Wilkey University of Delaware

      Woodford, Darryl, IT-University of Copenhagen Denmark

      Wragg, Mike, Leeds Metropolitan University

      Chronology of Play

      30,000 to 10,000 B.C.E.—A period of cave art traditions in Europe where cave paintings, primitive writing, and signs at Lascaux, France, reflect a fascination with hunting and interaction between man and nature and recognition of passing seasons. Play becomes a natural part of survival training. For instance, aboriginal Australians develop an ancient game of keep-away called Mungan-mungan that pits young athletes against their elders.

      10,000 to 8000 B.C.E.—Sedentary hunter-gatherer Natu-fian culture and rituals form in the Lèvent region, and permanent farming villages develop. Throw sticks in Egypt, South India, North Africa, and the Americas are used during this period, possibly indicating that play is associated with hunting. In Australia, the oldest existing boomerangs date to this period.

      5500 to 4000 B.C.E.—The indigenous Badarian culture in Egypt trades in copper, ivory, shells, and turquoise. The sail, plough, and potter's wheel are developed in Mesopotamia. Contests of traveling through snow country occur in central Asia.

      3650 to 3200 B.C.E.—Wheeled vehicles are invented. Permanent fishing villages emerge along the Pacific coast of South America. Skiing in Scandinavia becomes a more efficient means for crossing snow-encrusted terrain than snowshoeing.

      3000 to 1500 B.C.E.—Survival training transforms into combat sports including boxing, wrestling, gladiator contests, and bull jumping in Sumaria. Backgammon boards inlaid with mother-of-pearl, tortoiseshell, and ivory, along with dice, are found in southeastern Iran. A Minoan palace civilization on Crete draws craftsmen who manufacture goods for a wide-ranging maritime trade network. Pearls used in religious healing and magic inspire commerce. Trade, more than any other factor, shapes the history and movement of play. For instance, the pearl trade reaches across Asia, the Middle East, North Africa, and Europe, and much later into the Americas.

      2600 to 2100 B.C.E.—Excavations of the royal tombs of Ur reveal that board games like Senet originated in Egypt and nearby. Construction of the Stonehenge megalithic stone circle in southern England indicates a ritualistic culture aware of seasons and astronomy. A version of Go, a tabletop game, is invented in China. Children in various regions play with wooden tip cats.

      2000 to 1700 B.C.E.—A Hockey-type game played with two men squaring off using curved sticks and a small hoop occurs in the Nile Valley. Throwing and catching games are depicted symbolically on the walls and stone spheres in Egyptian tombs. An Egyptian wall painting in the 15th Beni Hassan tomb of an unknown prince contains depictions of female dancers and acrobats juggling. Girls in Nilotic communities play change-hand clapping games. Small clay balls (marbles) become popular in Crete.

      1700 to 1200 B.CE.—The two-wheeled horse-drawn chariot is developed in the Middle East. Chinese and Mongolian societies practice archery as a pastime. Hebrew patriarch Abraham leaves Ur and establishes a new nation, Canaan, between Syria and Egypt. Canaanites invent an alphabet with 28 letters, and Egyptians develop geometry. Greeks and Egyptians play Knucklebones. The earliest record of a fierce hurling game in Ireland appears in a description of the Battle of Moytura in 1272 B.C.E., when invaders defeated the residents in a hurling game and then replicated the victory on the battlefield.

      1250 to 400 B.C.E.—The Mesoamerican fast-paced ball-game, utilizing a rubber ball played on a court enclosed with stone walls in the shape of an “I,” becomes important in Central American Olmec culture.

      1200 to 200 B.C.E.—The game T'ou hu, an early version of darts, where an arrow is thrown from a fixed distance into a small receptacle positioned on the ground, is played. Phoenicians become leading maritime traders in the Mediterranean region, and their jewelry and beads depict doll-like faces. The skilled breeding of the Arabian horse, so influential in combat from 2000 B.C.E. until 500 ce., coincides with development of horse sports like Polo and Buzkashi. Amrit, an ancient city located in Syria, contains a stadium with a racetrack.

      1122 to 256 B.C.E.—Chinese first practice martial arts blending self-defense and religious and spiritual growth. Kites, first used in China, are later adopted for military signaling during the sixth century ce. and migrate to Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Burma, India, the Middle East, and North Africa.

      850 B.C.E.—Homer's Odyssey depicts how a lost ball roused the shipwrecked Odysseus from his sleep and led to his discovery by Nausicaa. Homer also describes a game of Hide-and-Seek that was thought to have originated in Ethiopia, called cock-a-loo.

      776 B.C.E.—The first Olympic games are held every four years in Olympia, Greece, until 393 ce., when the Roman emperor abolishes them. Meanwhile, less proficient athletes play an early version of Chuckie at the Hole, by bouncing a ball on the ground and then catching it on the rebound, with the player catching the most rebounds winning. Clay tops appear in Greece in about 750 B.C.E. Later, an early form of the yo-yo arrives in Greece, possibly originating in China.

      387 B.C.E.—The Greek philosopher Plato establishes the Academy to train a class of rulers through a process of the dialectic, using logic, ethics, and reasoning to reach solutions. Plato describes maze patterns to illustrate the study of true realities, but labyrinths date back to the ancient religions of Judaism, Brah-manism, Sufism, Jainism, Buddhism, Christianity, and Taoism.

      333 to 146 B.C.E.—Athletic play related to the pentathlon events are recorded in art during the Hellenistic Period. Athletes use jumping weights like modern dumbbells when training for races and gymnastics. Javelin throwing is considered to be part of military training. Indigenous cultures including Hohokam, Anasazi, and Mogollón tribes in North America use play to foster running, hunting, and gathering skills.

      52 to 43 B.C.E.—Roman children play Castles, or Pyramids, with nuts.

      6 or 7 CE.—Máncala, a strategic counting game, is played in Africa, Asia, and the Caribbean.

      125 to 170—Puppetry becomes popular in Greece and Rome. Lucius Apuleius chronicles how Roman marionettes have rolling eyes.

      300—Roman emperor Diocletian opens public baths in Rome as a place for socializing, though the pattern for the Roman baths as public places for socializing and exercise had already been well established for at least two centuries. Germanic peoples begin bowling with variations traced to Finland, Egypt, and Yemen.

      600Shatranj, an early version of Chess, is invented during the later years of the Persian Empire.

      711—Berbers from western Africa invade Spain and establish a distinctive civilization that lasts almost 800 years until Grenada is recaptured by Spanish Christians in 1492. The Moors introduce technology, design, and foods like sugar, rice, and saffron to the Iberian Peninsula. The Middle Eastern game of choice, Astraglis, becomes popular, and the pitch-and-toss game of Abbia from western and central Africa migrates northward.

      768 to 814—Charlemagne, king of the Franks, attacks the pagan Avars from eastern Europe. Popular romantic tales including Valentin and Orson—and later, during the 1340s, The Tale of Gamelyn, which chronicles a peddler named Gamble Gold, or Gamewell, one of Robin Hood's Merry Men—are passed on by generations of storytellers who inspire play.

      800Tatolli, a board game of chance popular with Mayas, and later the Aztecs, is played on woven mats, similar to pachisi, which is played in India.

      995 to 1005Aelfrics Colloquy, the first English book of instruction for children, written in dialog format, provides vivid details of Anglo-Saxon daily life and play. Scottish King Malcolm III organizes footraces and athletic contests, including the caber toss, stone put, hammer throw, and sheaf toss, as an entertaining means for developing warfare and survival skills.

      1120—Dominoes are developed in China.

      1133—St. Bartholomew's Fair is established in London's Smithfield.

      1147—Woodcuts are first used to illustrate manuscripts at the monastery in Engelberg, Switzerland. Playing cards appear in Europe after woodblock printing facilitates mass production.

      1274 to 1594—Venetian explorer Marco Polo travels throughout Asia. His account, The Description of the World, which includes descriptions of daily life and pastimes, serves as the chief source of European intelligence on China for centuries.

      1300—Jacques de Cessoles, a French Dominican friar, writes a treatise on Chess as it relates to human affairs. It is written in Latin and published in Genoa, Italy.

      1314—English King Edward II issues a royal decree prohibiting “the hustling over large balls” in mob Football because games negatively impact local merchants.

      1325 to 1335—The illuminated manuscript Luttrell Psalter depicts men chucking and pitching small objects into a hole for entertainment in a game of Chuckie.

      1377—Giovanni di Juzzo da Covelluzzo, a chronicler of Viterbo, records the introduction of playing cards in that city. Arabs later introduce the game of Taraceo from the Far East to Europe.

      1385—The Bishop of London declaims against ball-play around St. Paul's Cathedral.

      1390s—During the late 1390s, the Great Plague kills an estimated 30 to 60 percent of Europe's population, irrevocably altering its social structure. Meanwhile, in China a yo-yo is invented as a precursor to the modern Diabolo, a game of skill where a spool is tossed on a string suspended between two sticks.

      1410s—Doll manufacturing starts in Germany.

      1440s—The English develop the Morris Dance, often incorporating swords, hobbyhorses, sticks, and handkerchiefs in performances.

      1496—Upon his return from a second voyage to the New World, Christopher Columbus reports that indigenous people have developed a ball made from gum of a tree that while heavy, flew and bounced better than leather air-filled balls used in Europe. Columbus describes games including Bamboula, Tlatlico, and Tlachtli.

      1500 to 1525—During the High Renaissance, ABC hornbooks, battledores, and primers are used. The sturdy construction and design of hornbooks and battledores allows them to be used in physical games. Niccoli Machi-avelli's The Prince (1513) offers advice on how the ruler of a small state might strategically preserve power with judicious use of force, inspiring some leaders to seed sources for developing continuous wealth. By the 15th century, card games emerged in other parts of Europe. Pochspiel, a German game involving bluffing and strategy, similar to the Persian game of Nas, appeared. This became the game of Poker, where the object is to take the pot by holding the best combination of cards or by bluffing the other players into withdrawing.

      1533—France establishes a lottery to raise revenues for the state. The first English lottery is held in 1569; tickets are sold at St. Paul's Cathedral in London to raise money to repair British harbors.

      1539—Peiter Bruegel's famous painting “Children's Games” depicts 80 games played by Dutch (and other European) children, many of which require special apparatus.

      1543—English King Henry VIII commissions a hunting lodge known as Great Standing to be built in Epping Forest, one of the last stands of great oak forests that had surrounded London since medieval times, to provide panoramic views of hunting expeditions.

      1550—Water power, using water and air pressure to drive machinery, allows for automation of certain manufacturing, including paper production, that leads to an increase in printing books. Five years later, Olaus Magnus's Historia de Gentibus Septentrionalibus depicts young people jumping through hoops decorated with bells alongside a band of sword dancers.

      1585—An English expedition lands on North Carolina's Roanoke Island carrying dolls as gifts for indigenous people.

      1595—William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream inspires the children's singing game “Old Roger.”

      1600s—The Dutch, English, and French arrive in West Africa, heralding cultural exchanges that continue until the 1800s. Mu torere, a wood board game created in New Zealand, is played with a Tic-Tac-Toe philosophy prior to British rule in 1840. Meanwhile, a new design for a yo-yo utilizing a looped slip string emerges in the Philippines; it allows for the yo-yo to move back and forth more easily.

      1601—Professional actress and poet Isabella Andreini's Rime d'Isabella Andreini Padovana: cómica gelosa presents outlandish metaphors. Andreini becomes the model for the character of Isabella in Commedia dell'arte, derived from classical Roman and Greek comedy. Commedia dell'arte fosters improvisational motifs that spread throughout Europe during the 17th century, inspiring the creation of trickster characters like Punch, Kasperl, and Petrushka.

      1618—The Dutch poet Jacob Cats's Emblemata includes verses of “Kinder-spel,” describing children's jump rope games.

      1621—English settlers traveling onboard the Fortunebring a game popular with women called Stoolball to Plymouth, Massachusetts—Puritan leaders are not amused.

      1631—John Amos Comenius's School of Infancy states that children use natural materials for building and learning. This later inspires toy manufacturers to produce building toys and model kits.

      1633 to 1639—Duke Frederick of Holstein compiles reports of travels of ambassadors to Russia, Asia, Iran, the East Indies, and the South Pacific, describing social life and customs of those regions that are later published in London in English. In 1628 the Casino di Vene-zia becomes the first casino in Italy.

      1653—Laws forbid work, travel, and other activities like play on Sundays in Boston, Massachusetts, to maintain the Sabbath.

      1657—Jacques Stella's Les Jeux et Plaisirs de l'enfance depicts cherubs playing Hopscotch.

      1693—English philosopher John Locke's Some Thoughts Concerning Education promotes the idea that a toy is a plaything for the exclusive use of children and as an educational device.

      1694—The English government Stamp Office imposes “duties on vellum, parchment, and paper,” to raise revenues to finance a war against France, creating the first tax on playing cards.

      1698—D'Urfrey's comedy The Campaigners includes the children's finger game “Pat-a-cake, pat-a-cake, baker's man.”

      1700—Rebuses, or hieroglyphic puzzles, become popular novelty items. The rebus presents a message in a semipictorial form, using images of objects in place of selected words or syllables.

      1720s to 1740s—Chapbooks feature adventure stories and romances that introduce English translations of the Arabian Nights (1704–1708) and Daniel Defoe's Robinson Crusoe (1719) into children's play.

      1740—Irish tinsmith Edward Patterson settles in Berlin, Connecticut, producing some of the first American-made toys that are sold door-to-door.

      1744—John Newbery's A Little Pretty Pocket-Book contains a description and illustration of boys playing baseball.

      1750s—Boys' street games begin to have specific seasons. Colonial merchants who want to cultivate growing consumerism in North America import toys from England and the Netherlands, including dollhouses, furnishings, and commercially produced children's board games.

      1759—John Jefferey's Journey Through Europe, or, The Play of Geography, includes a linen-mounted hand-colored folding map game depicting a seventy-seven-stop trip through Europe.

      1763—British soldiers observe indigenous people in North America playing lacrosse and indigenous women play physically demanding team sports like double-ball and shinny.

      1767—London engraver and mapmaker John Spilsbury invents the jigsaw puzzle.

      1768—British horse trainer Philip Astley erects an arena in London. Astley, known as the father of the modern circus, hires novelty acts including professional equestrians, musicians, tightrope walkers, tumblers, and dancing dogs to entertain audiences.

      1770—The Industrial Revolution begins in Great Britain. The British children's novel Little Goody Two-Shoes (1765) depicts a heroine introducing an educational game utilizing letter pieces (like Scrabble) to teach reading. This game becomes a model for enlightened parents who want to prepare their children for success in an increasingly industrial world.

      1777—At a party at Chateau de Bagatelle, French King Louis XIV and his wife enjoy playing with a new table game featuring a narrowed billiard table, where players use cue sticks to shoot ivory balls through an inclined playfield. The game, called Bagatelle, spreads throughout France and evolves into the game of pinball.

      1777 to 1778—Captain James Cook reports observing surfing in Tahiti and on Oahu in Hawaii.

      1783—French architect Richard Mique creates the petit hameau, a forerunner to modern theme parks consisting of a farmhouse, dairy, and mill as an extension of the Petit Trianon for Marie Antoinette. At this rustic retreat, Marie Antoinette and her attendants play out roles of dairymaids and shepherdesses. Elsewhere in France, Brothers Joseph and Etienne Montgolfier introduce hot air ballooning using a balloon made with paper and linen.

      1798 to 1826—Alois Senefelder's invention of lithography in 1798 inspires the first coloring book published with uncolored images in Germany. Toy theaters, or juvenile dramas, are introduced in London for young people to produce popular plays of the day with miniature stages, backcloths, prosceniums, and characters, along with scripts printed on paper that can be cut out and assembled. Paper dolls first appear in the marketplace to provide consumers with previews of garment designs that can be commissioned. The scrapbook-compiling craze starts with publication of John Poole's Manuscript Gleanings and Literary Scrap Book (1826) containing a one-page introduction explaining the concept of a commonplace journal as a tool for collecting and arranging materials.

      1804—Jane and Ann Taylor's Original Poems for Infant Minds contains a poem, “Twinkle, twinkle little star,” that becomes a popular singing rhyme.

      1806—William Roscoe's poem “The Butterfly's Ball and the Grasshopper's Feast” appears in Gentlemen's Magazine. Thomas Jefferson clips this early nonsense rhyme for his granddaughter Cornelia.

      1808—French Empress Josephine travels to Bayonne, France, to join Napoleon, and the municipality sends young Landes stilt-walkers to greet her. Although stilts were invented in the early 1600s for practical purposes of walking elevated above normal height, court jesters adopt them to entertain audiences.

      1817—Englishman David Brewster reintroduces the kaleidoscope (known to the ancient Greeks) as a toy.

      1818—German Baron Karl Drais von Sauerbronn develops the Laufmaschine, or “Running Machine,” a prebicycle consisting a wooden frame supported by two in-line wheels.

      1824—Dr. RM. Roget systematically analyzes the principle of moving images. His findings are later adapted into optical toys including the Pheniksticope, Praxino-scope, Thaumatrope, and Zeotrope.

      1826—German educator Friedrich Froebel's The Education of Man encourages parents to install mobiles in cradles to ensure “occupation for the senses and the mind” to foster early child development.

      1827—Catherine Beecher requires students at her Hartford Female Seminary to do calisthenics.

      1830s to 1850s—Carpenter William S. Tower, from Massachusetts, manufactures wooden toys in his leisure hours. Tower establishes a cooperative guild consisting of 20 members, coinciding with a golden age of folk art. Parents make whirligigs in human forms with arms that spin and Noah's Ark sets, which become popular Sunday toys. Scrimshaw acrobatic toys emerge at the height of the whaling industry.

      1837—The accession of Queen Victoria to the English throne brings a tremendous period of sentimentality when nursery play is spotlighted. The continuing Industrial Revolution brings a migration of families from rural settings into urban areas. Children lose play time as they are employed in hazardous jobs in factories and mines, and as chimney sweeps, inspiring several Factory Acts in Great Britain.

      1838—The American company Francis, Field, and Francis, also known as Philadelphia Tin Toy Manufactory, produces and sells lacquered (or japanned) tin toys along with dollhouse furnishings.

      1840s—Amusement sheets containing puzzles, games, enigmas, and jokes for family entertainment are sold in bookstores and given as free advertisements. In England, students at Rugby School begin playing a team game where players can pick up a ball and run with it. The game is called called Rugby Football. In Germany, Frederick Froebel opens the first kindergarten, stressing the importance of environment, self-directed activity, physical training, and play in the early development of children in 1841.

      1843—English entrepreneur Alexander Dabell establishes the Blackgang Chine amusement park on the Isle of Wight, combining unusual and whimsical walkthrough attractions, exhibits, and rides. Massachusetts firm W & S.B. Ives publishes a board game called The Mansion of Happiness: An Instructive, Moral, and Entertaining Amusement.

      1845—Alexander Cartwright leads an effort to delineate rules for a bat and ball game in the United States and comes up with the Knickerbocker Rules that evolve into the modern sport of baseball.

      1849—Charles Goodyear invents and patents “vulcanizing” rubber, using chemicals to create elasticity and stability. Goodyear's invention, known as India rubber, is used in air balls, ball rattles, rattleboxes, doll heads, and a variety of animal toys.

      1853—French spiritualist M. Planchette develops the Ouija Board, consisting of a large piece of paper, a heart-shaped wedge with two wheels on each end, and with a pencil. In this game the players' fingers move the wedge to draw pictures and form words and messages. The name “Ouija” is supposedly derived from the French and German words for “yes”—oui and ja.

      1855—At the women's rights convention at Seneca Falls, New York, some women wear bloomers to draw attention to artificial distinctions created by restrictive clothing that limit daily physical activities for women.

      1856—George W Brown & Co. toymakers introduces the tin clockwork toy in the United States.

      1859Godey's Lady's Book is the first publication to feature paper dolls.

      1860—Milton Bradley invents The Checkered Game of Life and establishes his eponymous American game company. He is also the inventor of the paper cutter.

      1861—Charles Dickens's Great Expectations describes Beggar-My-Neighbor as the only card game that the novel's protagonist Pip knows how to play as a child.

      1861 to 1865—In Philadelphia in 1862, a flurry of children's fairs raise cash and supplies for a local companies and Army hospitals during the American Civil War. Schools gather wagons of food and linens. Stephen Foster's popular song “Don't Bet Money on the Shanghai” draws upon the music of European settlers and African slaves and captures the love of cockfighting in the American South.

      1869—Completion of the transcontinental railroad in the United States makes rapid distribution of manufactured goods possible on a national scale. J.W Hyatt invents plastic celluloid in New Jersey. Meanwhile, William H.H. Murray's Adventures in the Wilderness; or Camp-Life in the Adirondack starts an outdoors movement. The term “Murray's Fools,” in popular culture, referred to city folk who packed specially outfitted railroad trains each weekend to pour into resorts.

      1870—The United States establishes Christmas as a national holiday. Americans begin the practice of exchanging handmade or inexpensive toys and gifts among a wide circle of acquaintances and charities.

      1870s—Milton Bradley takes Dr. P.M. Roget's discoveries about optical theory and comes out with the Zoe-trope, an illusion-motion toy.

      1871—British inventor Montague Redgrave patents his “improvements in Bagatelle,” resulting in the birth of the modern pinball game. In the United States, the Frisbie Baking Company inadvertently starts a new craze when their pies are distributed to colleges in New England. Students discover that pie tins can be tossed and caught for sport and entertainment. Later, Walter Frederic Morrison and Warren Franscioni devise a plastic version that can fly a greater distance with more accuracy in 1948.

      1872—The United States establishes the National Park system when an act of Congress creates Yellowstone National Park. American James A. Bailey develops the concept of a three-ring circus. P.T. Barnum produces “The Greatest Show on Earth.” Later Barnum and Bailey merge enterprises and tour the United States.

      1873—Mary Mapes Dodge becomes editor of Si. Nicholas Magazine.

      1874—WE. Crandall designs and patents Toy Building Blocks, the precursors for plastic LEGO units. In 1932 Danish carpenter Ole Kirk Christiansen starts producing wooden toys and soon calls them LEGO before expanding to plastics. LEGO manufactures interlocking bricks called “Automatic Binding Bricks” in 1949, and in 1974, LEGO introduces Minings.

      1870s and 1880s—American kindergarten pioneer Elizabeth Peabody inspires Milton Bradley to manufacture Froebelian “occupations” for young children. The toy steam engine is developed. In England, fireworks governed by safety regulations became available for home use. Embossed tin rattles and whistles are manufactured. Advances in printing technology create new levels of play and home hobbies. In the United States, acquaintance cards were novelty items used in courting rituals. Flirtatious and fun, these visiting cards became tokens of subsequent friendships. The invention of gum coating fosters the manufacturing of stickers.

      1881—Thomas Edison invents the carbon filament electric lamp and later the phonograph. He later designed a power supply system that enables lamps and other electrical equipment to be powered by the same generator but can be switched on and off individually. Italian writer Carlo Collodi's Pinocchio writes the popular fantasy about a puppet that is transformed into a boy.

      1883—W.W. Newell's Games and Songs of American Children describes Jack-stones as little double tripods of iron and the game of Jacky-Five-Stones as an 18th century Irish game. George S. Parker establishes a toy and game manufacturing company called Parker Brothers and publishes his first game, called Banking, at the age of 16 years.

      1884—The National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children is established in the United Kingdom.

      1891—Dr. James Naismith develops the sport of basketball. Although basketball is immediately popular at women's and men's colleges in the United States, four years later, Clara Gregory Baer invents a noncontact sport derived from basketball called netball. Netball, primarily played by women, becomes popular in Australia, New Zealand, the West Indies, Sri Lanka, and Great Britain.

      1893Stern-Halma, known in the United States as Chinese Checkers, is invented in Germany. Meanwhile, brothers Frederick and Louis Rueckham mass produce Cracker Jack, a mixture of popcorn, molasses and peanuts called “Candied Popcorn and Peanuts,” and sell it at the Chicago World's Fair. Cracker Jack becomes a popular treat at baseball games and is mentioned in the 1908 baseball song, “Take Me Out to the Ball Game.” In 1912, Cracker Jack boxes come with prizes.

      1895—Paul Boyton establishes Sea Lion Island on Coney Island, the first permanent amusement park in North America to charge admission fees. By the 1920s and 1930s, midway arcade games, including shooting galleries and coin-operated machines where a mechanical genie reveals a fortune, appear in amusement parks.

      1896—Baron Peirre de Coubertin initiates the modern summer Olympics in Athens, Greece.

      1900—L. Frank Baum's fantasy The Wonderful Wizard of Oz becomes popular, spawning games, toys, and dreams. A year later, psychologist Karl Groos's The Play of Man introduces concepts of fantasy play.

      1901—British businessman Frank Hornby invents reusable strips, plates, wheels, and other parts for working mechanical construction kits known as Meccano that can be assembled at home.

      1904—While G. Stanley Hall had earlier argued that infancy should be prolonged until the age of 14 years, FA. Verplanek in his article “Shortening the Period of Infancy,” in Education Review, volume 27 (April 1904), pages 406 to 409, asserts that adolescence is the transitional period of development between puberty and adulthood, extending mainly through the teen years, and legally terminating when the age of majority is reached.

      1906—The Wallie Door Company patents and first manufactures a specialty automotive card game called Tour. Later, Frenchman Edmond Dujardin creates another automotive card game called Mille Borne. Meanwhile, Will Keith McVicar establishes the Battle Creek Toasted Corn Flake Company, which becomes cereal giant Kel-logg's. The company ambitiously markets Corn Flakes with celebrities and cartoon characters, and to increase sales, they offer a special toy and movable book called Funny Jungleland Moving Pictures Booklet with any purchase of two boxes of cereal in 1909.

      1907—Italian educator Maria Montessori establishes her first casa dei bambini in Rome, a school where children can develop creatively and intellectually, utilizing practical life exercises and sense-training materials.

      1911—Caroline Pratt develops Do With Toys, pretending toys designed around specific themes with figures representing aspects of real life. Meanwhile, the Camp Fire Girls is established to offer outdoor recreational activities to girls in urban areas. The Boy Scouts is also established. A.C. Gilbert invents the Erector Set, a toy construction kit made famous by the first national advertising campaign in the United States.

      1913—Liverpool journalist Arthur Wynne invents the word-cross puzzle for the New York World, and crossword puzzles become a craze in the United States.

      1915—Artist and political cartoonist Johnny Gruelle gives his daughter Marcella an adapted rag doll with red yarn as hair. Marcella tragically dies after being vaccinated for smallpox without her parents' consent, and the Raggedy Ann doll becomes a symbol for the anti-vaccination movement. In 1918, Gruelle's Raggedy Ann Stories introduces the doll to the public. Later, some sororities adopt Raggedy Ann as a mascot.

      1917—Helen Kinne and Anna Cobley's The House and Family encourages parents to think about child safety when selecting toys. The book asserts, “Baby will put everything into his mouth. Toys made of wool and hair are bad. Those which can be washed are best.”

      1920—Milton Bradley purchases McLoughlin Brothers, a leading manufacturer of washable durable linen books, paper cut-out figures, and games for children. The A.C. Gilbert Company manufactures home chemistry sets.

      1923—Henry and Helal Hassenfeld establish the textile remnant company Hassenfeld Brothers, which grows into the toy-making giant Hasbro.

      1927—Alfred Adler's Practice and Theory of Individual Psychology promotes a psychodynamic approach to individual self-image that inspires play therapy.

      1930—Fisher-Price manufactures sturdy toys for preschool children using lithographed paper on wood.

      1931—The Starex Novelty Company produces the guessing board game called Battleship.

      1932—Maurice Greenburg establishes Coleco (Connecticut Leather Company), which later experiences phenomenal success with Cabbage Patch Dolls during the 1980s.

      1933—As part of his New Deal, President Franklin D. Roosevelt launches the Civilian Conservation Corps to relieve the Great Depression by employing thousands of men in a wide range of conservation and construction projects for state parks and recreational areas.

      1935—Although Quaker Elizabeth Magie had developed The Landlord's Game to explain political economist Henry George's land value tax and to illustrate the “evils of land monopolization” in 1904, Parker Brothers produces the popular board game Monopoly during the Great Depression, which captures the public attention.

      1938—The Fair Labor Standards Act establishes severe restrictions on child labor in the United States. Architect Alfred Mosher Butts creates a variation of a word game he invented called Lexiko. Utilizing frequency analysis to determine the distribution and value of letter tiles from various sources, including the New York Times, he calls the game Scrabble.

      1940—The plastics toy industry emerges.

      1943—Milton Bradley introduces the Indian morality game known as Moksha Patamu in the United States as Chutes and Ladders.

      1945—Harold “Matt” Matson and Elliot Handler establish Mattel, Inc., which becomes the world's largest toy importing company.

      1950s—Architects begin integrating hobby-oriented spaces into homes. Sewing rooms, workshops, darkrooms, and recreation rooms are added to houses.

      1952—Alexander S. Douglas develops OXO, a Tic-Tac-Toe computer game also known as Noughts and Crosses. Mr. Potato Head is first sold.

      1954—Barbara Frankel and Louis Galoob establish Galoob Toys, which manufactures Micro Machines in south San Francisco, California.

      1955—Disneyland amusement park opens in Anaheim, California.

      1956—Yahtzee is patented. Noah and Joseph McVicker invent the nontoxic clay modeling compound Play-Doh and sell it as a children's toy.

      1957—Freeman Tilden's Interpreting Our Heritage sets forth guiding principles for how the National Park Service in the United States shapes visitor experiences.

      1958—Charles S. Roberts establishes Avalon Hill, a company specializing in wargames.

      1959—Mattel, Inc., launches a new adult figure doll called Barbie. The Ken doll is introduced in 1961.

      1961—Bob Stewart's Password, an American television game produced for Goodson-Todman Productions, first airs on October 2, 1961.

      1963—In one of the oldest forms of fantasy sports, Strat-o-Matic, players manage imaginary baseball teams based upon the performances of real-life players.

      1964—During the Vietnam War, Hasbro launches G.I. loe, a line with a World War II theme inspired by the 1945 war film The Story of G.I. Joe.

      1966—Charles E Foley and Neil Rabens patent the game Twister. Milton Bradley launches Twister, and Eva Gabor and Johnny Carson turn it into a craze when they play it on The Tonight Show.

      1969—Imperial Toys manufactures Bubbles and other novelty toys.

      1970—Parker Brothers introduces the NERF ball made of polyurethane foam, invented by Rene Guyer, as the “first official indoor ball.” NERF balls and darts bring traditionally outdoor play into the workplace.

      1971—The earliest known coin-operated arcade video game, Galaxy Game, debuts at Stanford University in California. The following year Atari Inc. launches Pong, achieving great commercial success.

      1972—Michael Bond's A Bear Called Paddington (1958) inspires the first stuffed Paddington Bear, created by Gabrielle Designs.

      1974—Hungarian sculptor and professor of architecture Ernö Rubik invents a mechanical puzzle that he calls the Magic Cube. Ideal Toys renames it as Rubik's Cube. Tactical Studies Rules, Inc., publishes a fantasy role-playing game, originally designed by E. Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson, called Dungeons and Dragons.

      1975—Advertising executive Gary Dahl successfully markets the Pet Rock, an ordinary rock sold as if it was a live pet with instructions for care and feeding.

      1979—Members of the Dangerous Sports Club execute bungee jumps from the Clifton Suspension Bridge, spanning Avon Gorge in North Somerset, England. Commercial bungee jumping starts in 1986.

      1980—Namco launches the popular game Pac-Man. In 1981, Donkey Kong becomes a pioneering platform game. After a group of hunters including Bob Guernsey, Hayes Noel, Mark Chapin, and Alex Reiger discuss the adrenaline rush gained from sport hunting, Guernsey establishes the National Survival Game and then contracts with the Nelson Paint Company to be sole distributor for paintball equipment used in the game Survival.

      1984—In an industry acquisition, Hasbro, Inc., purchases the Milton Bradley company.

      1991—MicroProse publishes Civilization, a turn-based strategy computer game produced by Sid Meier.

      1994—Canadian cartoon artist Todd McFarlane establishes McFarlane Toys to manufacture detailed models of comic book and video characters, musicians, athletes, and figures from popular culture.

      1996—Satoshi Tajiri develops a role-playing game called Pokémon.

      1997—The Scottish company Rockstar North launches the popular game Grand Theft Auto as a sandbox-style video game for the tabletop computer console Sony PlayStation.

      1999—The Stadium Giveaway Company revamps the German Nodder doll by creating a novelty poly-resin bobble-head doll, and the San Francisco Giants make Willie Mayes bobble-head dolls popular as a home game give-away for fans.

      2001—Roger Caillois's Man, Play and Games investigates the phenomenon of play as “an occasion of pure waste: waste of time, energy, ingenuity, skill, and often money.”

      2008—Will Wright designs a single-player online game called Spore that allows a player to control the evolution of a species.

      Meredith Eliassen San Francisco State University
    • Glossary

      Glossary
      A

      absorbent mind Developed by Maria Montessori, a theory that divides childhood into two phases. The first, known as the period of unconscious creation or unconscious absorbent mind occurs from birth to age 3 and involves the unconscious acquisition of basic skills; the second, known as the period of conscious work or the conscious absorbent mind, occurs after age 3 and involves developing a mathematical mind and seeking freedom.

      accoutrements Accessories for clothing that include cartridge box, bayonet belt, and scabbard for toy soldiers.

      Acitrón de un fandango Mexican game that involves passing small objects from person to peson while singing a nonsense rhyme.

      acrobatics Human feats of balance, agility, coordination, strength, and flexibility.

      acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) Common thermoplastic used to make rigid, molded products.

      action-adventure games Video games that require a player to overcome obstacles.

      action figure Posable plastic toy, usually a character from a movie, television show, or video game.

      action role-playing game Role-playing video game that uses elements of many action and action-adventure games.

      addiction Compulsive psychological or bodily dependence on a substance or practice (e.g., video game addiction).

      Addison, Joseph (1672–1719) Essayist and poet who wrote about daydreaming, among other themes.

      Adler, Alfred (1870–1937) Austrian medical doctor and psychologist who founded the School of Individual Psychology with Sigmund Freud and others, sparking the psychoanalytic movement.

      advantage First point scored after deuce in tennis.

      adventure One of five traditional genres of children's literature, according to the Strong National Museum of Play.

      adventure games Earliest type of video game; play focused on solving puzzles by interacting with characters, usually in a nonconfrontational manner.

      adventure playground Playgrounds with child-oriented perspective in play. Developed from C. Th. Sorensen's 1931 plans to reuse wastelands, bomb sites, and building sites as places where children can create, shape, dream, and imagine reality.

      advergames Online games based on and linked to advertisements.

      affect Conscious, subjective aspect of feeling or emotion; the external display of an emotion or mood.

      affective attunement Interpersonal contact necessary to human relationships, involves resonance of one person's affect to another's. Often, affective attunement refers specifically to the bonding between parent and child.

      affirmation Act of asserting the existence of truth of something or of stating something.

      age-appropriate At the correct level for chronological (actual) age.

      Agon Abstract strategy game with no random or unknown elements; perhaps the oldest board game.

      agon Greek word for conflict; refers to all competitive play in Caillois's model of play.

      alea Refers to all games of chance in Caillois's model of play.

      AU-American Girls Baseball League (AAGBBL) Women's baseball league developed with the financial support of Phillip Wrigley in 1943 to offer an alternative form of baseball when men were being drafted for World War II.

      Allen, Margery; Lady Allen of Hurtwood (1897–1976) English landscape architect who actively promoted child welfare and who wrote a series of works about playgrounds.

      All England Croquet Club Organization founded in 1868 to sponsor tennis and croquet competitions in England; became the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club.

      Alligator Eyes also known as Submarine Variation of the water game Marco Polo. When the person who is “it” calls “alligator eyes,” she or he can swim under water with eyes open for one breath.

      alpine skiing Downhill skiing.

      amateur Athlete who does not play for payment (is not professional), but who pursues a sport as a leisure pastime.

      American Bowling Congress (ABC) An organization founded in 1895; developed the rules and equipment standards of bowling.

      American Coaster Enthusiasts Club (ACE) Organization of roller coaster enthusiasts. Since its inception in 1978, the group organizes events, publishes magazines and guidebooks, and works to preserve roller coasters.

      American Gladiators American competition television show (1989–1996) that pitted amateur athletes against the show's gladiators (paid employees) in contests of strength and ability.

      Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) American civil rights law (1990) that prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability and calls on public accommodations including recreation facilities to be accessible.

      America's Cup Premier yachting race.

      Amerikaner Norwegian trick-taking game.

      amusement park Commercially operated collection of rides, games, and shows for family amusement and entertainment.

      anagrams Word created by rearranging the letters of another word.

      angling Sport fishing with hook, line, and usually rod.

      Animal Chess Also known as Jungle Chess or Dou Shou Qi. This traditional Chinese abstract strategy game for two players is a forerunner of Stratego.

      aquathlon Continuous two-stage race where swimming precedes running.

      arbitrage (v.) To place a combination of bets so that if one loses, the other wins. To arbitrage implies having an edge with no or little risk.

      arcade Public gaming facility with video games.

      arcade console Upright apparatus on which games are played.

      archery Sport that involves shooting bows with arrows.

      articulated Segments attached by movable joints.

      Asian Football Confederation (AFC) An organization founded in 1954 to govern football (soccer) in Asia, which includes Australia but excludes Israel and Cyprus.

      As Nàs A popular 17th-century game played in Persia (now Iran).

      aspiration Will to succeed; ambition.

      assistive devices Equipment used to increase, maintain, or improve functional capabilities of individuals with disabilities.

      Association for Children's Play and Recreation (Play-board) Organization that coordinated work in child's play in the United Kingdom from 1982 until it was dismantled in 1987 and basically subsumed by the Sports Council (as the Children's Play and Recreation Unit) in 1988.

      Association for Play Therapy (APT) Organization founded 1982 to promote play, play therapy, and cre-dentialed play therapists.

      Association for the Study of Play (TASP) A major international organization of scholars founded in 1974 that continues to meet annually and to publish an annual volume, Play & Culture Studies.

      Association of Adventure Playworkers Organization of professional playworkers founded in the United Kingdom in the 1970s.

      associative play Play in which children participate in separate activities but interact through the exchange of toys and discussion.

      athletics Active diversions that require physical exertion and competition.

      attention Component process underlying observational learning.

      Australian Open Tennis tournament started in 1905 and held yearly as one-quarter of the Grand Slam tennis tournaments.

      autism Brain development disorder that impairs social interaction and communication.

      available metabolic energy According to Surplus Resource Theory, the combination of the amount of energy available in reserve and the physiological capacity for sustained vigorous activity.

      Avalanche Rock paper scissors sequence of rock, rock, rock.

      avatar Digital or graphical representation of a person or computer used in a virtual reality site or chatroom.

      axe-throwing Traditional Estonian activity involving measuring the distances that axes have been thrown.

      Ayatori Japanese version of the string game Cat's Cradle.

      B

      baby foot Also known as table soccer, foosball, and table football; tabletop game based on soccer, or association football.

      backgammon Two-player board game, where pieces are moved according to throws of the dice.

      backpacking Also known as trekking, tramping, and bushwalking; activity combining hiking and camping.

      badminton Racquet sport where two players or two teams of two players hit or volley a shuttlecock over a net.

      Baffle Gab Word game in which players are given five words that they must use in either a sentence or story.

      bagatelle Table game where balls are knocked into holes guarded by wooden pegs. A short cue is used.

      Balderdash A word game like the parlor game Dictionary. Players attempt to define unknown words and guess when others have supplied an accurate definition.

      ball and paddle game Predecessor of console games.

      balloon Tough, nonrigid bag filled with gas or heated air. Earlier versions were made of dried animal bladders.

      Banco Imobiliario Brazilian version of Monopoly; literally “Real Estate Bank.”

      Bandura, Albert (b. 1925) Canadian psychologist specializing in social cognitive theory and self-efficacy

      Bandura's Social Learning Theory Expansion of Julian Rotter's ideas where the four requirements for people to learn are attention, retention, reproduction, and motivation.

      Ba Quan Vietnamese game; literally means “three ligature.”

      Ba Que Vietnamese game; literally means “three pegs.”

      base Place a runner must touch before scoring in baseball, softball, and kickball.

      baseball Ball, usually 9 to 9.25 inches in circumference and 5 ounces in weight, composed of leather covering layers of wool and polyester or cotton yarn around a core of rubber, cork, or a mix of the two.

      baseball bat Smooth wooden or metal club used to hit the ball thrown by the pitcher in baseball. The bat is at most 2.75 inches in diameter at its thickest part, no more than 41 inches long, and usually no more than 36 ounces in weight.

      baseball glove Protective handgear used to help catch the ball in baseball.

      baseball mitt Protective handgear used to help catch the ball in baseball.

      basketball Round ball of rubber, leather, or synthetic leather used to play basketball. The ball comes in three sizes.

      basketball hoop Horizontal, circular metal hoop supporting the net through which the basketball must be placed in order to score.

      Bateson, Gregory (1904–80) British anfhropologist, social scientist, linguist, semiotician, and cyberneticist.

      batter Offensive player trying to hit the ball thrown by the pitcher in baseball.

      batter's box Area in which batter is positioned while at bat in baseball.

      battledore Badminton racket.

      battledore and shuttlecock Earlier version of badminton played with small rackets (called battledores) and shuttlecocks, which are passed back and forth over a net.

      bear baiting Sport forbidden by Charles I when he reissued the Book of Sports in 1633; involves baiting and killing bears in an arena.

      beat'em up Games also known as hack and slash games; video games that focus on close-quarters combat.

      beautiful play In a game, a well-played moment in which every player seems extraordinary.

      bébé French word for baby; refers to a class of dolls that look like babies or young children.

      behavioral theory Theory supporting the idea that behavior is conditioned through positive and negative reinforcement.

      bell-ringing Ringing of handbells and church bells for entertainment.

      Belmont Stakes Horse race that happens on the Saturday on or after June 5; part of horseracing's Triple Crown.

      best-ball Players proceed as normal in the game of golf, but the lowest score of all the players on the team counts as the team's score.

      bibeloterie (“knick-knackery”) Miniature toys and baubles that both adults and children collected in Europe from 1600 to 1800.

      Bid Whist Partnership trick-taking card game that uses the standard 52-card deck as well as two jokers.

      Big Business Version of Monopoly.

      Bigézés Hungarian hitting stick game that likely came along Eastern trading routes to the West.

      Bingo Lottery-style game in which numbered balls are drawn at random and players cover the corresponding numbers on their cards.

      biological simulation Simulation video game that allows the player to experiment with genetics, survival, or ecosystems. This type of video game is often educational in nature.

      bisque Unglazed clay used to create figurines and dolls.

      Black Lady Version of Hearts.

      Black Man Also known as Uomo Nero and Bogie Man; Italian version of Old Maid.

      Black Maria Version of Hearts.

      Black Peter German version of Old Maid.

      blind average Score of a higher handicap golfer on a particular course.

      BMX Also known as bicycle motocross; specific form of racing and performing tricks on specially designed bikes.

      boardgame Game played on a specially designed board; alternative spelling is board game.

      Boggle Word game that requires players to find words by linking letters on adjacent dice.

      bomba Also known as the kill; a play in the sport volleyball where the volleyball is spiked over the net in such a fashion that the other team cannot respond the volley.

      bombs Colloquial term used to describe a move in marbles.

      bone Domino.

      boobla Also known as bubble hockey and Super Chexx; tabletop arcade hockey game covered by a special bubble dome.

      Bordieu, Pierre (1930–2002) French sociologist whose work tends to focus on aspects of the dynamics of power in social internactions.

      Boston Schoolyard Initiative Partners Policy aimed at rebuilding schoolyards throughout Boston through a public-private partnership.

      Boticelli Dramatic parlor game similar to a tableaux vivante but using words.

      boules Version of the game pétanque, similar to lawn bowling.

      bowls Also known as lawn bowls; balls are rolled toward a specific target, with the ball coming closest determining the winner of the game.

      box One of the most basic kite shapes.

      Box Ball Popular playground and street game that involves drawing a four-box grid on which various players will compete.

      Boys and Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) National club designed to help promote responsible citizenship, competence, usefulness, and belonging.

      Boy Scouts of America (BSA) Youth organization founded in 1910. The BSA emphasizes responsible citizenship, character development, and self-reliance.

      British and World Marble Championship Marble festival held yearly at Easter; began in 16th century.

      British Association of Play Therapists Professional body that governs therapy, training, research, and membership of Play Therapists in Britain.

      Broken Bridge Scottish version of children's song London Bridge.

      bubble hockey Also known as boobla and Super Chexx; tabletop arcade hockey game covered by a special bubble dome.

      Buck Variation of leapfrog.

      buckle-pit Ordinary material also used for play in early Europe.

      bullfighting Popular sport in Spain and Mexico where a matador taunts and kills a bull at close range.

      bureaucratization A characteristic of contemporary organized play that manifests itself in overt rules and regulations.

      business simulation games In a business simulation game, the player controls the economics of the game, which is generally centered around a business or economy.

      Buzkashi Central Asian team sport where players on horseback attempt to place an animal carcass into a goal.

      C

      caber toss Traditional Scottish event in which a large wooden pole is tossed; part of the Scottish Highland Games.

      Cache-Cache French version of Hide and Seek.

      Caillois, Roger (1913–78) French philosopher and sociologist who studied the relationship between play, games, and culture.

      Callao Club British club.

      camogie Celtic team sport; women's variant of hurling.

      Camp Fire Girls American youth organization founded in 1910; became coed in 1975.

      Canadian Scrabble Championship Invitation-only English-language Scrabble tournament played by the top 50 Canadian players; held every two to three years.

      Canasta Card game similar to Rummy that uses two decks of cards and four jokers.

      Canfield Common name for Solitaire games that include gambling.

      canoe Small, light boat that is pointed at both ends and propelled with a paddle.

      Caps Also known as Skelly, Skelsy, Skellzies, Scully, Tops, and Skully; children's game played in New York City and other urban areas.

      Capture the Flag Traditional game played by teams that attempt to capture their opponents' flags.

      carambole Also known as carom billiards and carambole billiards; version of billiards in which the cue ball must strike two object balls.

      card Domino.

      card shark Expert card player; sometimes used to refer to a dishonest player or cheater.

      Carnival Version of Monopoly.

      Carolina Cyclone Roller coaster.

      cartes blanches Situation in Piquet that arises when, after the deal, one player has a weak hand (no cards above 10), and points are scored as a result.

      cartomancy Form of divination, specifically forecasting or foretelling, by reading cards like Tarot cards.

      cartoon Caricature or humorous drawing; during the 20th century these drawings were serialized and published in many newspapers, magazines, and comic books.

      Casa dei Bambini Literally “Children's House”; Maria Montessori's school for children, opened in 1907.

      casino Public building used for gambling.

      Castles Also known as Pyramids; game played in ancient Rome using nuts and clay marbles.

      catcher In baseball the position behind home plate; the catcher receives the ball from the pitcher.

      catchy Variation of the chasing game known as tag.

      Cat's Eyes Name for a marble with a particular color and pattern.

      Chair Dance Alternative name for Musical Chairs.

      Chair Game Alternative name for Musical Chairs.

      Chameleon Top Variety of spinning top.

      chance luck Unknown and unpredictable phenomenon that causes a particular result.

      Charleston Bridge American version of children's song London Bridge.

      Chasers Variation of the chasing game known as tag.

      Chasing and Hiding Australian version of Hide-and-Seek

      Cherry Pit Name for a marble with a particular color and pattern.

      cherrystones Ordinary material used for play in early Europe.

      Chess Olympiad International biennial Chess tournament organized by FIDE.

      Children's Happy Evenings Association (CHEA) Voluntary organization developed in 1888 with the mission of providing play opportunities for the youth of the United Kingdom.

      china Ceramic material created by heating raw materials in a kiln.

      Chinese Checkers Board game for two to six players; variation of game Halma.

      Chinese Flick Version of playing marbles that uses an Asian method of projecting the marble.

      Chinese River Game Also known as Chinese Chess.

      Chuncara Inca board game using dice and colored beans played in Bolivia, Equador, and Peru.

      Chutes and Ladders Children's board game that is a variation of Snakes and Ladders.

      city-building games Simulation video games that put the player in the role of city planner or leader, allowing the player to develop structures for food, shelter, health, economic growth, spiritual care, etc.

      club houses Structure designed as a meeting place (secret or otherwise) for all of the members of a group.

      clubs Suit of cards that represent the peasant class in France.

      Cluedo Also known as Clue; mystery crime fiction board game.

      cobnut Game played in Europe before 1600, wherein the cobnuts were moved and also used as currency to measure gains and losses.

      Cock-stele European throwing game (prior to 1600) where a chicken was buried up to its neck in the ground and young men threw sticks or arrows (cock-steles) at its head.

      cognitive skills Mental abilities that allow people to process external stimuli; include thinking, reasoning, and intellectual ability.

      coin-operated arcade game Video game or pinball machine that operates when a certain amount of money has been placed into it.

      Colossus Roller coaster.

      comic opera Light-hearted opera with happy ending and some spoken text.

      comics Stories told in graphic form through the presentation of sequential images.

      competition Contest for which a winner can be determined.

      compulsive readers Also known as ludic readers; readers who become immersed in the world of the story, letting the external world slide away.

      computer game Game played on a computer or computerized platform.

      computer role-playing game (CRPG) Role-playing video game of the Western tradition; the player creates a character, who moves along a nonlinear storyline by making choices.

      computer simulation games Video games that mix skill, chance, and strategy to simulate some aspect of reality.

      conscious absorbent mind Second stage of Montessori's formulation of the absorbent mind. In this stage, children aged 3 and above develop a mathematical mind and seek freedom.

      console Cabinet to house electronic devices.

      console role-playing game (CRPG) Role-playing video game of the Eastern tradition; the player controls a party of predefined characters through a linear storyline that has been dramatically scripted.

      construction and management simulation games (CMS) Video games in which players manage, build, and expand fictional projects or communities.

      construction toys Toys that encourage building and engineering.

      constructive play Play that involves creative problem solving, including the building of objects and structures.

      constructive rhythm of life Maria Montessori's term for children's four distinct phases that prepare them for learning.

      contest Occasion on which a winner can be declared from among the contestants, or players.

      Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC, UNCRC) International convention adopted in 1989 to define the civil, economic, political, social, and cultural rights of children.

      cooperation Process of working or acting together.

      cooperative play Social interaction that involves a combination of the sense of group identity and organized activity.

      coordination Effective interaction of movements.

      Corkscrew Roller coaster.

      Cosmic Education Thematic study developed by Maria Montessori to rouse curiosity and imagination in students while also connecting information from one unit to the next.

      course rating Evaluation of a golf course's level of difficulty for a scratch golfer, as determined by the USPGA.

      Cowboys and Indians Wargame based on the American West before full settlement.

      crèche doll Figure representing someone who was present at the birth of lesus Christ, as indicated by the Bible story. lesus, Mary, loseph, wise men, kings, shepherds, or any number of animals are often formed as crèche dolls.

      crescendo Rock Paper Scissors sequence of paper, scissors, rock.

      Crorepati Baopaar Pakistani version of the board game Monopoly.

      cross-country running Sport in which teams of runners complete a course over either smooth or rough terrain with the main intention of reaching the finish line first.

      cubaholics Players addicted to using the Rubik's Cube.

      Cubist's thumb Ailment related to excessive use of the Rubik's Cube.

      cue Tapering rod used to strike balls in pool or billiards.

      cue sports Games of skill that use a cue to strike a ball.

      cultural subjects and peace education One of the six key areas in Maria Montessori's schools.

      cup and ball Game played in colonial America; requires tossing a ball and trying to catch it in a cup when both the ball and cup are attached to a string.

      curling Game in which heavy stones are slid on ice toward a target.

      D

      D&D Dungeons & Dragons.

      Dance Dance Revolution (DDR) Also known as Dancing Stage.

      Dancing Stage Also known as Dance Dance Revolution; music video game that asks players to compete particular dance moves by following the visual and audio cues; music video game that asks players to compete particular dance moves by following the visual and audio cues.

      Dara Iranian doll developed in response to Barbie.

      deal Distribute cards to the players in a card game.

      Debebekosh Ethiopian version of Hide-and-Seek.

      decathlon Athletic contest that consists of 10 events.

      deck Also known as pack; set of 52 playing cards.

      deck Set of dominos, traditionally 28.

      defenseman Player whose role is to defend against the other team and prevent the opponent from scoring.

      definite probability Actual chance that a particular outcome will occur in a given situation.

      delta/triangle One of the most basic kite shapes.

      demonstration sports Events at the Olympics from 1912–92. Participants received medals that were not counted among the country's official medals.

      Depth Charge A 1976 video computer game similar to Minesweeper.

      Detective Physical parlor game that requires the “thief” to find the “detective.”

      deuce In tennis, a tie that requires two successive points to win the game.

      developmental delay Failure to meet certain developmental milestones by the expected time period.

      dexterity Adroitness with hands; ability to perform tasks with the hands.

      Diabolo Game of skill for which a spool was tossed using a string suspended by two sticks; played in colonial America.

      diamond One of the most basic kite shapes.

      diamonds Suit of cards that represent the bourgeoisie in France.

      Dibeke South African running ball game.

      diecast Process of creating toys and other objects by injecting a molten metal alloy into a steel mold (the inverse of the object's intended shape) under high pressure.

      die cutting Method of cutting various shapes by using sharp-steel ruled stamps or rollers.

      differential reinforcement Method of reinforcement, in opérant conditioning, that targets an incompatible or different behavior than that for which change is required.

      Dipanonit Variation of the chasing game known as Tag.

      discard In card games, the act of throwing out a useless card or failing to follow suit.

      discovery Term for a toy that fosters learning and creativity through play, according to the Strong National Museum of Play.

      dissected map Early version of a jigsaw puzzle which involved attaching a map to some kind of backing and then cutting it along borders.

      dominant strategy Action that is a player's best move, regardless of any other player's move.

      dominant strategy Equilibrium situation in which both players maximize their outcomes.

      Dominos Several games played using small rectangular blocks or tiles; also the tiles used to play those games.

      double-ball Native American game in which players used sticks to catch two billets, balls, or sacks tied together with animal skin.

      double-bladed paddle Paddle with blades at both ends of the cross bar; used for kayaking.

      double-down In Blackjack, the process of doubling a bet after receiving the first two cards.

      Double Dutch Variety of jumping rope in which two people turn two ropes and one or more people jump within those ropes.

      downhill skiing Also known as alpine skiing; sport and recreational activity involving sliding down snow-covered hills with ski boots bound to long skis.

      dramatic parlor games Parlor games that require some sort of acting.

      Draughts Checkers.

      draw game Any version of Poker in which the players are dealt a full complement of cards that they may later exchange.

      duathlon Athletic contest that involves running and cycling events.

      dub up Colloquial term used to describe a move in marbles.

      dumb show Also known as mime; performance using gestures and body movements but no words

      Dungeon Master (DM) Selected participant in Dungeons & Dragons who describes the game to other players.

      E

      Early Learning Centre (ELC) International toy retailer created in 1970 that creates toys for children up to the age of 6. More than 51 ELC retail stores are found in Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, and Oman.

      Easy Money Version of Monopoly.

      efficient outcome Also known as a pareto optimal outcome; in this situation, one player's success causes another player's loss.

      ego In psychoanalytic theory, the conscious mind.

      ego orientation Also known as outcome orientation; occurs when a player measures success based on whether an opponent was defeated.

      Eisstock Swiss variation of curling played during the winter, often compared to pétanque on ice.

      Elastics Version of playing Marbles that uses elastic to project the marble.

      El Banquero Version of Monopoly played in Urugay

      electronic toy Toy that requires an external energy source in order to function.

      electronic video game Video game that requires an external energy source in order to function.

      Elias, Norbert (1897–1990) German sociologist who helped to shape process or figurational sociology.

      emotional equilibrium Playworkers have to take emotional equilibrium into account when considering how to create the best play environment.

      empathy One of the human attributes developed during play.

      enders Those holding and twirling the rope in jump roping.

      equality Characteristic of contemporary organized play that manifests in open access to players, regardless of birthright, social class, sex, or religious belief.

      Erikson, Erik (1902–94) Developmental psychologist and psychoanalyst who formulated a theory on social development of human beings. Erikson's theory of development begins with infancy and continues through adulthood.

      escape the room Type of online graphic adventure game for which the object is to escape a mysterious room.

      ethical stance Playworkers have to take ethical stance into account when considering how to create the best play environment.

      exergame Video game that requires the player to exercise.

      extreme fighting Form of fighting that involves mixed martial arts.

      F

      face cards Playing cards with the jack, queen, and king.

      fair Carnival or traveling show with rides, games of skill, and sideshows.

      fairy tale Fictional story, often involving traditional characters, told to amuse or teach a moral.

      fairy tales One of five traditional genres of children's literature, according to the Strong National Museum of Play.

      falconry Hunting with birds of prey.

      Fan-Tan Vietnamese game involving heavy gambling.

      fantasy One of five traditional genres of children's literature, according to the Strong National Museum of Play.

      fashion doll Dolls designed to feature appearance and clothing style.

      Fastaval in Arhus Role-playing conference held every spring in Denmark.

      Feast of Fools Medieval festival celebrated throughout Europe. Mocking the church officials and practices was a common occurrence; so, too, were masks and disguises.

      Fédération Internationale de Basketball Amateur (FIBA) Association that governs international competitions of basketball.

      Fédération Internationale de Domino (FIDO) Group that organizes international dominos competitions.

      Fédération Internationale des Échecs (FIDE) Association created in 1924 to govern chess competition.

      Federation Internationale De Volley-Ball (FIVB) International governing body for volleyball, founded in Paris in 1947.

      fell running Also known as mountain running and hill running; sport of running and racing off-road.

      fencing Art or sport of swordfighting.

      festival Time reserved for celebrating and feasting.

      field events Throwing and jumping events in track and field competitions.

      field hockey Game played like ice hockey, but on a grass field and with a ball instead of a puck.

      fighting simulation video games Also known as “versus fighters”; an action video game that literally simulates one-on-one combat.

      figure Model of a bodily form.

      figurine Small sculpted or molded model of a human, animal, or religious form.

      Finance Version of Monopoly.

      finger-throwing game Earlier version of Rock Paper Scissors played as early as 2000 b.c.e. in Egypt.

      first-person shooter game (FPS) Video game which is seen through the perspective of the character controlled by the player.

      first toy Toy, usually a stuffed animal or a blanket, that plays an important role in an infant's life and development. Donald Woods Winnicott studied the role and significance of the first toy during and after infancy.

      Fitter Britain Movement 1930s movement in the United Kingdom to promote increased physical activity among children.

      Fivestones Pentalitha Game played in ancient Rome as a divination (by women) or to gamble (by men).

      Flashlight Tag Variation of the chasing game known as Tag that involves shining a flashlight on opponents instead of tagging them.

      flexibility Playworkers have to take into account when considering how best to create such an environment.

      floorball Indoor team sport developed in Sweden during the 1970s. The game involves team members using sticks to move a ball with 26 holes in an attempt to score.

      flush Poker hand consisting of all five cards in the same suit.

      fly fishing Method of angling that uses a fly rod, fly line, and artificial bait to catch fish.

      Flying Top Variety of spinning top.

      Fly the Garter Version of Leapfrog.

      folklore Stories, proverbs, riddles, and songs of a culture, usually part of that culture's oral tradition.

      follow the leader Group activity that involves following and often mimicking one person (the leader).

      foosbaU Also known as baby foot, table soccer, and table football; tabletop game based on soccer, or association football.

      Foot and Half Version of Leapfrog.

      football Name of several sports, all of which involve kicking a ball with the intent of scoring a goal.

      formal games Games played by a game community, who follow established rules and focus on winning the game.

      Fort-Da Also known as gone/here and played by young children; similar to Hide-and-seek.

      forward Player whose role is to attempt to score.

      four-ball Golf played between two teams of two players. Each player plays his/her own ball, but the lowest score counts for the team.

      foursomes Golf played by two teams of two people, where each team has only one ball and players alternate playing it.

      Fox and Geese Scandinavian board game in which geese try to surround the fox so he could not move and the fox tries to catch the geese.

      Fox and Hounds Version of Hares and Hounds in which the hounds try to catch the fox and the fox tries to evade capture.

      fox hunting Also known as horse and hound; activity that involves using dogs to hunt a fox.

      freedom Playworkers have to take freedom into account when considering how to create the best play environment.

      freestyle cross-country skiing Technique that involves pushing off with both legs and resembles skating.

      freestyle Frisbee includes Frisbee played for fun between friends and more specialized routines designed with the Frisbee.

      free time In Surplus Resource Theory, time not required for work or other serious survival activities.

      French Deck Standard deck of 52 cards.

      French Top Variety of spinning top.

      friendly games Games played by a play community, who collectively decide the rules of the game.

      Frisbee golf Game in which players try to throw a Frisbee through openings, much in the same way that golfers try to hit balls into openings.

      Froebel, Friedrich (1782–1852) Theorist who proposed that children have unique needs and capacities and, in formulating that theory, laid the groundwork for modern education.

      Froggies Name for a marble with a particular color and pattern.

      fudging Colloquial term used to describe a move in marbles.

      Fulla Alternative to Barbie created in Saudi Arabia.

      Full Sequence Pairs Also known as the Pairs Sequence; any game of Whist in which two people are partnered for the duration of the game.

      Funeral Game played in Lebanon wherein children mimic the ceremony of a funeral.

      G

      Gabata Game similar to the Egyptian and Inca game Máncala and the Japanese game Shogi. Gabata is played in the Congo and in Ethiopia and asks players to capture the colored seeds held by other players.

      Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) Amateur sporting organization that promotes Gaelic games like hurling, camogie, Gaelic football, handball, and rounders.

      Gallo, Gallina Literally “Cock, Hen”; Mexican game.

      gamble (noun) Risky act or money risked for possible gain; (verb) play games for money or take a chance.

      game Amusement or pastime; contest with rules to determine a winner.

      game community Group of people who join together to play a particular game and who focus on winning that game.

      Game of 20 Squares Egyptian board game.

      Game of Ferses Earlier version of Draughts.

      gamer Also known as gamester; person who plays games.

      gamesmanship Learned behavior developed during play; refers to the level of respect one has for competitors, for the rules of the game, and for the results of the game.

      gaming Playing games; gambling.

      gaming platform Operating system on which a video game or computer game is played.

      garter Line in the dirt used when playing Leapfrog.

      Gato Name for Tic-Tac-Toe in Chile, Mexico, and Costa Rica.

      Geertz, Clifford (1926–2006) American anthropologist who advocated trying to interpet the symbols of another culture. “Deep Play: Notes on the Balinese Cockfight” is one of his most well-known essays.

      Giant Slalom Alpine ski race in which skiers must race between poles (“gates”) spaced at greater distances from each other than in the traditional slalom.

      Girl Guides Association Name for Girl Scouts outside of the United States; original movement parallel to Boy Scouts but intended for girls.

      Girl Scouts of America American version of Girl Guides Association; movement parallel to Boy Scouts but intended for girls.

      giving a back Body stance formed in Leapfrog as a player rests his or her head on the thighs and hunches the body forward.

      gliding Recreational activity and competitive sport that involves flying unpowered aircraft known as gliders and sailplanes.

      Globe Top Variety of spinning top.

      glove Protective handgear used to help catch the ball in baseball.

      Gnav Game of the Cuckoo family that uses a special set of cards.

      Go A board game for two players, played with black and white game pieces on a 19 × 19 grid, which originated in China, and then spread to Korea and Japan.

      goalie Player whose job is to protect the net and keep the opponent from scoring.

      goal line Line where the scoring goal stands.

      God games Video games, often without a set goal, that allow a player control over the lives of people within the game.

      Goff Early version of hockey, played with a curved club.

      Goffman, Erving (1922–82) Canadian sociologist who studied social interaction in the form of dramaturgical perspective.

      Going to Jerusalem Alternative name for Musical Chairs.

      goofing around Fooling around; playing around.

      Goose Board game developed in Italy during the 15th century. The object of the game was to be the first person to reach the end of the journey.

      government simulation Simulation video games that focus on the politics, government, and policies of a country but rarely on warfare.

      graphic adventure games Video games that require players to make choices in order to guide the course of the game, which is seen in graphic form on the screen.

      grass skiing Started in France in 1966; uses short skis on wheels to ski on grass slopes in order to train for winter skiing events.

      gratification Positive emotional response to the fulfilment of a desire.

      Great American Revolution Roller coaster.

      gridiron football American football.

      Gris Card game, version of Pig.

      group games Games that by definition cannot be played by only one person.

      Guild of Poor Brave Things Group established in 1894 in the United Kingdom to help disabled boys to create a productive place for themselves within society.

      gutters Colloquial term used to describe a move in marbles.

      gymnastics Sport that displays strength, agility, and balance through a series of exercises.

      H

      hack and slash games Also known as beat em up games; video games that focus on close-quarters combat.

      haka Dance among the Maori of New Zealand.

      halatafl Viking game similar to Chess; predecessor of Hounds and Hares.

      half balls Version of stickball played with balls cut in half.

      Half-Iron Triathlon with race distances of 1.2 miles (1.9 km), which is half the distance of the races in a full triathlon.

      hanafuda Japanese playing cards.

      handball Gaelic game similar to squash or racquetball; played by two, three, or four players using a gloved hand instead of a raquet.

      handball Team sport in which two teams of seven players each (including goalies) pass and bounce a ball in order to try to score by getting it into the goal.

      handicap Measure of an amateur golfer's ability to play over 18 holes. This number represents the number of strokes over par the golfer is likely to perform on an above-average day.

      handicraft Work or craft produced by hand.

      Hand-In-and-Hand-Out Indoor game.

      Handy-dandy Guessing game, played with a small object hidden in the palm of a hand hidden behind the player's back.

      Hangman Word game where one player chooses a word and indicates the number of letters in the word. Other players must find the word by choosing one letter at a time. Each incorrect letter results in the drawing of a body part on a stick figure. The goal is to guess the word before the character is hanged.

      Harpastum Amateurish ball game played in Italy; earlier version of modern football and rugby, although with a much higher degree of violence.

      Heads-or-Ships Ancient Roman game involving tossing coins, like Heads-or-Tails.

      Head Start School readiness progress founded in 1965 in the United States that continues to help children throughout the country.

      Heads Up Another name for the classroom game called Seven Up.

      hearts Suit of cards that represent the clergy in France.

      height jumps Track and field events that measure the vertical distance of a jump.

      heptathlon Athletic endeavor, usually track and field, consisting of seven different events.

      high jump Track and field event for which a competitor runs toward and leaps over a horizontal crossbar. The runner's goal is to jump ever-increasing heights without knocking the bar over.

      hiking long walk for exercise or pleasure.

      hill running Also known as mountain running and fell running; sport of running and racing off-road.

      hit In Blackjack, the way to ask for another card.

      Hit Me, Hit Me Schoolyard game played in poor towns of South Africa that reenacts the brute force to which the children are subjected.

      hnefatalf Viking game similar to Chess.

      hobby Enjoyable activity undertaken during one's free time.

      hockey puck Vulcanized rubber disc three inches in diameter used in ice hockey.

      hockey rink Ice rink designed specifically for the game of hockey.

      hockey stick Used in hockey to handle the puck.

      hole Card dealt face-down in poker.

      homely objects Toys related to tools used in the home.

      home plate Base over which the batter, as an offensive player, stands and over which a runner must pass in order to score.

      Honors Ace, king, queen, and jack of the trump suit in games of Whist.

      hook Portion of fishing rod at the end of the line; used to hold bait.

      Hopscotch Children's skipping game that requires a grid to be drawn in the dirt or on the sidewalk.

      Hornussen Swiss sport that is a mix of golf and baseball.

      Hounds and Hares Version of Hares and Hounds in which the hounds try to catch the hares and the hares try to evade capture.

      Hounds and Jackals Egyptian board game.

      housie-housie Bantu version of playing marriage or house.

      Huizinga, Johan (1872–1945) Dutch historian whose

      1938 work Homo Ludens discusses the influence of play on European culture.

      hula hoops Toy hoops twirled around the body for entertainment.

      Hunts Version of Hares and Hounds in which the hunter tries to catch the prey and the hunted tries to evade capture.

      hurdle (noun) Light movable barrier over which runners must jump in certain track and field events;

      (verb) to jump over an obstacle.

      Hurkle 1978 computer game similar to Minesweeper.

      hurling Outdoor team sport played with hurleys (sticks) and sliotars (balls); ancient Gaelic in origin.

      Hurling Irish game similar to hockey, played with a small ball and a curved wooden stick.

      hustler Player who takes advantage of less-skilled competitors in money games.

      Hwatoo Korean gambling game.

      I

      Ice-cream Jellies Name for a marble with a particular color and pattern.

      ice hockey Game played by two teams of six skaters who try to maneuver a puck into their opponent's goal.

      iconic status Status assigned by the Strong National Museum of Play to toys that are well-remembered and respected.

      id In psychoanalytic theory, the primitive instincts and energies that exist beneath all psychic activity.

      If You Love Me, Dearest, Smile Physical parlor game.

      ilinx (vertigo) Category of play that addresses or deals with the ecstatic states, according to Roger Caillois's theory of play.

      ilinx (vertigo) Refers to all forms of play that create a sense of disorder or an alteration of perception according to Caillois's model of play.

      imitation Act of copying another person's actions.

      Indigenous Games Project South African organization devoted to reinforcing community values and promote interactions between communities through traditional games.

      Individual Psychology Differential psychology or the psychology of individual differences.

      infield Diamond-shaped portion of a baseball field.

      Inflation Version of Monopoly.

      informal games Games played by a play community that collectively decides the rules of the game.

      injection molding Process of creating toys and other objects by injecting a molten plastic into a mold (the inverse of the object's intended shape) under high pressure.

      innovation Category used by the Strong National Museum of Play when the toy significantly changed how subsequent toys are played with or designed.

      Innovative Playground Research Project Organization that presents case studies from around the world and suggests that partnerships between the private and public sector can build and maintain playground spaces.

      Institute of Park and Recreation Administration (IPRA) Created in 1926, IPRA brought together parks and garden managers to provide outdoor recreational facilities to establish supervised games sessions.

      Institute of Playleaders Organization of professional playworkers founded in the United Kingdom in the 1970s.

      intellectual games Games that require or develop intelligence.

      intellectual mind Phase of a child's development that follows the absorbent mind in Maria Montessori's theory. In this phase, children explore their world with increased concentration, attention, and intellectual fortitude.

      intellectual stimulation Playworkers have to take intellectual stimulation into account when considering how to create the best play environment.

      interactive fiction Also known as text adventure games; video games that require players to make choices in order to guide the course of the game, which the computer would then describe.

      interactive movies Video games that emerged with the technology of the laserdisc. They allow a player to control some actions within prefilmed full-motion cartoons or live-action sequences.

      intercollegiate athletic system System that develops and controls sports competition between colleges and universities.

      International Bubble Hockey Federation (IBHF) International governing body for bubble hockey competitions and rules.

      International Cricket Council (ICC) International governing body of cricket founded in 1909, when it was known as the Imperial Cricket Conference.

      International Federation of Dominos Group that organizes international dominos competitions.

      International Federation of Netball Association (IFNA) Association that governs international competitions and rules of netball.

      International Golf Federation (IGF) Organization that arranges international amateur golf competitions.

      International Olympic Committee (IOC) Group that organizes and regulates the modern Olympic games.

      International Play Association (IPA) International, nongovernmental organization founded in Denmark in 1961 to protect, preserve, and promote the child's right to play as a fundamental human right; members come from any profession that works for or with children.

      International Rugby Board (IRB) International governing and rule-making body for rugby union.

      International Table Hockey Federation (ITHF) International governing body for table hockey; organizes the world championship every two years.

      International Table Soccer Federation (ITSF) International governing body for competitions of table soccer.

      International Top Spinners Association (ITSA Spin Top) International organization that shares information and stories about spinning tops while also encouraging participation in the art and sport of top spinning.

      International Water Ski Federation (IWSF) International organization that governs water-skiing events, sets official international rules, and coordinates the work of national federations.

      Ironman Annual triathlon race famous because of its television coverage, race conditions, and extremely difficult conditions.

      J

      Jacks Game that involves throwing and picking up various jackstones between bounces of a small rubber ball.

      Jai alai Cuban game developed from the Basque game pelotari. The game involves tossing a ball and catching it in a basket attached to one player's hand.

      Jan-Ken-Pon Alternative name for Rock Paper Scissors.

      javelin spear thrown as a weapon in competitive track and field events; also the event in which the spear is thrown.

      Jegichagi Traditional Korean game.

      jester A jokester or the ordinary material used for play in early Europe.

      Jeu de Paume French game that shares several characteristics and rules of Pallone con Bracciale.

      jointed bodies Doll or figurine bodies composed of several parts attached at moveable joints.

      Joint National Committee for Training in Play-leadership Organization of professional playworkers founded in the United Kingdom in the 1970s.

      jokes Humorous anecdote or jest; often part of classroom play.

      jousting Activity in which two people spar with each other; traditionally a medieval European sport in which two mounted knights charge each other with lances.

      judo Japanese martial art.

      Juego de pelota Ballgame using a rubber ball played by Aztecs, Mayans, and Toltecas.

      juggling Throwing and catching several items at the same time.

      jumble Word game that requires players to unscramble letters in order to form words; often used as a classroom teaching aide.

      jumping events Track and field events that involve jumping.

      jump rope Also known as skipping rope; length of rope, usually with handles at both ends, swung around while a person jumps over it.

      Jungle Traditional Chinese board game that prefigured the game Stratego.

      junk playground Also known as adventure playground; playgrounds with child-oriented perspective in play. Developed from C. Th. Sorensen's 1931 plans to reuse wastelands, bomb sites, and building sites as places where children can play and create.

      K

      Kabadi Where two teams try to invade each other's territory.

      Kabal Meaning “secret knowledge,” this version of solitaire is played in Poland, Denmark, and Norway.

      kaipara Type of athletic pursuit undertaken by the Maori of New Zealand.

      Kalq Australian Aboriginal game of throwing spears and deflecting them with wooden shields.

      karate Style of martial arts that involves sharp blows and kicks to an opponent's pressure-sensitive points; based on traditional Japanese system of unarmed combat.

      Karo Stick Game played by the Maori of New Zealand.

      Karpetalakhi In the game, two teams of men use their belts to lash at each other, with one group guarding children hidden under a carpet and the other trying to release them; when the children are finally released, they appear to be magically revived.

      kayak Small canoe propelled with a double-bladed paddle.

      Ketnari Ancient Japanese game considered one of the earliest forms of soccer and part of prayer for world peace, fertility, good health, and family happiness.

      Khuzza Lawizz Ancient Egyptian version of Leapfrog.

      ki a New Zealand Maori practice of carrying delicate eggs in woven flaxen basets at the end of a braided rope. Ki has become a form of martial arts.

      Kigogo Kenyan game of moving counters (often different colored stones, seeds or shells) around a board to capture an opponent's pieces.

      kill Also known as the bomb; play in volleyball where the volleyball is spiked over the net in such a fashion that the other team cannot respond to the volley.

      kindgergarten Preschool for children aged 4 to 6 that prepares them for elementary school.

      Ki-o-rahi Ball game played by the New Zealand Maori.

      Kip Variation of the children's chasing game known as Tag.

      kite Object created by a light-weight frame and covering attached to string and flown in the wind.

      Klondike Variety of Solitaire.

      knickknack Also known as a novelty; an inexpensive and mass-produced object purchased or collected for amusement.

      knock-knock jokes Humorous anecdotes that follow a particular pattern of interaction between the joke teller and the audience; often part of classroom play.

      knucklebone, or astragulus The anklebone of cloven-hoofed animal served as a naturally good item to play like dice.

      Knucklebones More commonly known as Jacks; descended from an ancient Roman game.

      knuckle down Colloquial term used to describe a move in marbles.

      Kunettwigi Common Korean folk game.

      kung fu Generic word for Chinese martial arts.

      Kvatrutafl Viking board game.

      Kyodai Computer brands of Mahjong Solitaire; may be a modernized version of the old Chinese game known as The Turtle.

      L

      La Bataille French version of War, played by children and adults.

      La Belle Lucie Variety of Solitaire.

      labelling game Game in which someone, usually an adult, points to an object and then names it with the intention of increasing a child's vocabulary and comprehension.

      lacrosse Competitive team game created by Native Americans; two teams use long-handled rackets to transport, throw, and carry a ball toward a net to score.

      Ladies' Game Early European version of Draughts.

      La Française des Jeux French governmental organization responsible for regulating all games involving money.

      La Marelle French version of Hopscotch.

      Landlord's Game Version of Monopoly.

      language One of the six key areas in Maria Montessori's schools.

      language games Games designed to develop or expose language skills.

      La Nivernaise Version of Solitaire.

      lapta Game like baseball, where players use a bat to hit a small, heavy stick, in Belarus.

      Last Word Board Game Timed word game that asks players to list words that fit into a specific category and begin with a specific letter.

      L'attaque Original version of Stratego that appeared just before World War I in France.

      lawn bowls Also known as bowls; balls are rolled toward a specific target with the ball coming closest determining the winner of the game.

      Leap, Frog, Leap Singing game for children dating back to ancient Rome.

      Le Cadran Variety of Solitaire.

      left bower Jack of clubs in Euchre.

      leisure Time for recreation and amusement.

      Le Jeu de Quilles French version of land bowling.

      Le Jeu des 7 Familles (family game) French game played by both adults and children.

      Le Loi Salique Variety of Solitaire.

      length jumps Track and field events that measure the horizontal distance of a jump.

      Le Pont Levis French version of children's song London Bridge.

      Le Saut de Mouton Game like Leapfrog; literally means “the sheep's leap.”

      Les Billes French version of marbles.

      Les Patiences French game like solitaire.

      Le Vieux Garçon French version of Old Maid; literally means “the old boy.”

      life simulation Also known as Artificial Life Games; simulation video games that involve living or controlling at least one artificial life.

      life styles In Alfred Adler's theory, these are interpersonal approaches to living based on feelings, behaviors, and past experiences.

      light gun shooters Shooter video game that uses a pointing device for work with computers or a control device for use with home consoles and in arcades.

      line cord made for fishing; attached to the fishing rod.

      literary word games Games that use a player's knowledge of words and literature.

      lithograph Printed image made from a flat surface; type of printmaking.

      little brother of war Lacrosse in southern Native American tribes.

      Little League Usually children's variation of formal games, as in Little League Baseball.

      logic or word-play games Parlor games involving mental exercises.

      logic puzzle Puzzle that derives from the field of deduction; includes matrixes and mazes.

      London Bridge Singing game that dates back to the thirteenth century.

      longevity Classification used by the Strong National Museum of Play if the toy has appealed to children across multiple generations.

      long jump Track and field event in which the athlete attempts to jump as far as possible after having run to and jumped from a given mark.

      lottery Game of chance that awards prizes to the player whose purchased lot is drawn.

      Lotto Game of chance like Bingo; can also refer to the lottery.

      Lotto (“Lottery”) Made its appearance in the 17th century in Genoa, where people used to bet on political appointments.

      Lottomatica Italian company that acquired the American group GTECH and is currently one of the largest world lottery operators, with an immense online network across more than 50 countries.

      love Signifies “zero” in tennis.

      luck Unknown, unpredictable phenomenon that causes an event to end in a particular fashion.

      ludic readers Also known as compulsive readers; readers who become immersed in the world of the story, letting the external world slide away.

      Ludo Board game in which two to four players race around a board, moving according to rolls of a die.

      ludus In Callois's model of play, ludus is all play that is structured and institutionalized; opposite of paidia.

      M

      Mahjong A game for four players that originated in China; involves skill, strategy, and calculation, as well as a certain degree of chance.

      Mah-jongg Variation on the spelling of Mahjong.

      Main Rimau Literally “Tiger Game”; played in Malaysia.

      make-believe Pretend or imaginary play.

      making a back Body stance formed in Leapfrog as a player rests his or her head on the thighs and hunches the body forward.

      Malibu surfboard Surfboard with a longboard shape on which most surfers learn to surf.

      Máncala Egyptian board game.

      Máncala Kenyan game of moving counters (often different colored stones, seeds, or shells) around a board to capture the pieces of an opponent.

      Mankata Traditional Congolese game that involves making an hollow in the ground and then placing stones around those of one's opponent in order to capture their pieces.

      marathon Foot race of 26 miles 385 yards (42.195 km).

      marble Small ball of glass used for various games.

      Marco Polo Water game where one person tries to find the others playing by yelling “Marco,” to which the other players must respond “Polo.” This game is very similar to Alligator Eyes and Submarine.

      Marelle French version of Hopscotch.

      Marn Grook Traditional game called “Game Ball”; played by the Djab Wurrung people in western Victoria, Australia.

      marrowbone Ordinary material also used for play in early Europe.

      martial arts tournaments Organized displays of the codified practices of training for combat.

      Massively Mini Media Player Game ipod-style video game.

      massively multiplayer online first-person shooter game (MMOFPS) Virtual world in which many players, each controlling a character and seeing the game through the perspective of that character, interact and engage in virtual combat.

      massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) Role-playing game played online with hundreds of players interacting in real time.

      Master Mind Simple code-breaking board game played by two players; invented in 1970 in Israel.

      mastery orientation Situation in which a player measures success based on self-set standards. Winning does not matter if the player does not play well.

      Matador Icelandic version of Monopoly.

      match play Game of golf in which the player with the highest points score wins.

      mathematics One of the six key areas in Maria Montes-sori's schools.

      Mattis Norwegian card game.

      maximum benefit payoff The best reward possible in a given situation.

      maze games Video games that require a player to navigate a maze, which constitutes the entire playing field.

      medley Musical composition that uses pieces of many other songs.

      Mehen Egyptian board game.

      memory games Games that require using one's memory skills and that develop memory skills in turn.

      Merelles Also known as “The Mill”; early European version of Draughts.

      Mermaid on Rocks Version of Marco Polo.

      Metropolitan Public Gardens Association (MPGA) Organization created in 1882 to campaign for the creation of small play areas for children in London.

      microgenetic perspectives Changes that occur over very brief periods of time (i.e., seconds and minutes) in Vygotsky's evaluation of human development.

      Mik Cambodian version of Hopscotch.

      Military Variation of Whist in which several teams, each led by a captain, play visiting opposing teams.

      military strategy board game Board game that requires players to make decisions about military matters.

      military strategy game Game that requires players to make decisions about military matters.

      Mill Also known as “Merelles”; early European version of Draughts.

      mimesis Act of copying or imitating.

      mimicry (simulation) All games of simulation, wherein one assumes a role, wears a disguise, or identifies with a person, according to Caillois's model of play.

      miming Type of acting where facial expressions, gestures, and movements replace speech.

      Minister's Cat Logic parlor game.

      Mintonette Original name of volleyball.

      mitt Protective handgear used to help catch the ball in baseball.

      mixed strategy Also known as a randomized strategy; probability distribution over a player's entire set of strategies.

      modeling Method of teaching through representing the desired behavior so that the student will learn through imitation.

      Moksha-Patamu Morality game where the snakes corresponded to vices and the ladders to virtues.

      Mölkky Finnish game of Skittles.

      monkey-bars Playground equipment on which children travel from one side to the other by swinging from their arms.

      Montessori, Maria (1870–1952) Italian physician and educator who designed a method for educating children in which children are encouraged to make maximal decisions and to learn through observing and correcting themselves.

      Montessori Method Educational method that emphasizes self-directed activity by the child and clinical observation by the teacher. Developed by Maria Montessori.

      Morabaraba South African game boards created in the dirt.

      Moraff's Computer brand of Mahjong Solitaire; may be a modernized version of the old Chinese game known as The Turtle.

      Morgenstern, Oskar (1902–77) Austrian economist who cofounded game theory.

      Morpion French version of Tic-Tac-Toe.

      Morra Finger game of chance played by two people in Ancient Rome.

      Morris Dance English folk dancing based on rhythmic stepping and choreographed figures by groups of dancers.

      motivation component Process underlying observational learning.

      motor reproduction component Process underlying observational learning.

      motor skills Skills based on the ability to use the body's muscles.

      mountain biking Sport of riding bikes off-road, over rough terrain.

      mountaineering Mountain climbing.

      mountain running Also known as fell running and hill running; sport of running and racing off-road.

      Mugwump Early 1978 computer video game similar to Minesweeper.

      Multiple Intelligences Theory developed by Howard Gardner that argues people have a variety of different and measurable intelligences. Gardner's categories are bodily-kinesthetic, interpersonal, verbal-linguistic, logical-mathematical, naturalistic, intrapersonal, visual-spatial, and musical.

      music and arts One of the six key areas in Maria Mon-tessori's schools.

      music box Decorative box that, when opened or wound, plays music.

      music games Video games that require a player to follow sequences of movement or to develop specific rhythms.

      mystery One of five traditional genres of children's literature, according to the Strong National Museum of Play.

      N

      Naismith, Dr. James (1861–1939) Inventor or creator of basketball.

      Nanpure Japanese name for Sudoku; abbreviation of the English and Japanese words for “number place.”

      Napoleon at St. Helena Variety of Solitaire.

      Napoleon's Square Variety of Solitaire.

      Nash Equilibrium Situation in which each player's response to another player's strategy is the best possible or tied for the best possible in that pairing.

      National Basketball Association (NBA) North American professional basketball league.

      National Children's Strategy 10-year Irish strategy developed in 2000 to respect, cherish, and encourage children.

      National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Association that organizes the athletic programs of colleges and universities; current membership consists of about 1,200 institutions, conferences, organizations, and individuals in the United States

      National Hockey League (NHL) Professional hockey league established in 1917.

      National Institute for Play (U.S.) American nonprofit public-benefit corporation focused on bringing the unrealized knowledge, practices, and benefits of play into public life.

      National Invitation Tournament (NIT) Men's college basketball tournament sponsored by the NCAA.

      National Playing Fields Association (NPFA) Founded in 1925, this was the first national body to make the case for increased outdoor play for children and increased provision for that play.

      National Recreational Policy for Children Irish policy adopted in 2007 to provide a strategic framework for the development of recreational opportunities aimed primarily at young people.

      National Recreation and Parks Association Organization whose goal is “to advance parks, recreation and environmental conservation efforts that enhance the quality of life for all people.”

      National Scrabble Championship American Scrabble tournament held every one to two years.

      Ncuva South African board game created in the dirt.

      negative reinforcement Way to encourage behavior by taking away an aversive condition (e.g., not losing playtime when all work is completed).

      Neolttwigi Marbles, as played by Korean girls.

      Nerf Balls Balls made of a foam-like material that makes indoor play safe.

      nesting doll Doll inside of which are several smaller dolls.

      New York Version of Monopoly.

      Nguni South African version of Stick Tag.

      Nine Men's Morris Strategy board game for two players that was first created in ancient Rome.

      Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) Original 8-bit video game console.

      nonplayer characters (NPC) Main characters, guest stars, walk-ons, and bit parts in role-playing games.

      nonsense One of five traditional genres of children's literature, according to the Strong National Museum of Play.

      non-strictly-competitive game Also known as a nonzero-sum game; in this situation, cooperation can help players because one player's interests are not entirely contradictory to the interests of other players.

      non-zero-sum game Game that usually involves cooperative play.

      Nordic skiing Also known as cross-country skiing; sport and recreational activity that involves sliding along snow-covered land with ski boots attached to skis at the toes but unbound at the heels.

      novelty Also known as knickknack; inexpensive and mass-produced object purchased for amusement.

      Number Place Translation of Nanpure and Sudoku.

      numeracy Skill with numbers and mathematics.

      nursery rhyme Traditional poem or song taught to young children.

      Nzango Congolese game.

      O

      odds on Display amounts a bookmaker will pay out on winning bets.

      odds Probability of a particular outcome.

      Ohajiki Japanese marbles.

      Old Roger Dramatic singing game where a ring of children act out the parts of the chorus in order to relate incidents from a play about a funeral for Old Roger.

      Olympics International multisport event for winter and summer sports. The Olympics occur every four years.

      one-on-one play Competitive play, especially in an active athletic pursuit, between two people.

      online persona Virtual presence a person assumes in an online game, chat room, or other virtual reality setting.

      onlooker play Type of play in which a child observes those playing but does not participate. In onlooker play, the child learns new behaviors and skills through observation.

      on-rails shooter Shoot em up videogame in which the player has a predetermined path, in contrast to the free movement of a first-person shooter game.

      ontogenetic perspectives Development over a lifetime according to Vygotsky's evaluation of human development.

      opérant conditioning Process wherein behavior is shaped by reinforcement or punishment.

      origami Art of paper folding.

      outcome orientation Also known as ego orientation; occurs when a player measures success based on whether an opponent was defeated.

      outfield Section of a baseball field beyond the infield, contained by the extensions of the first and third baselines.

      outguessing regress Unavailability of accurate predictions or confident expectations.

      P

      pack Also known as deck; set of 52 playing cards.

      pack Set of dominos, traditionally 28.

      Padiddle Car game that involves looking for and identifying oncoming cars with only one functioning headlight.

      paideia Greek word for education; refers to the cultural heritage passed from one generation to the next.

      Paidia Extreme of Caillois's model for play that involves unstructured and anarchic play; opposite of ludus.

      Pairs Sequence Also known as the Full Sequence Pairs; any game of Whist in which two people are partnered for the duration of the game.

      Paley, Vivian (b. 1929) Child psychologist, kindergarten teacher, and early childhood education researcher.

      Pall Mall Rural Italian ancestor of Croquet.

      pantomime Performance using gestures and expressions but not words.

      Paper Chase Version of Hares and Hounds in which the hunter tries to catch the prey and the hunted tries to evade capture.

      paper doll Flat doll, made out of paper and able to be clothed with paper outfits.

      Paper Scissors Stone Club Organization devoted to playing and strategizing about Rock Paper Scissors; created in London in 1842.

      papier-mâché Technique in which forms (including doll's heads) can be formed by mixing wet paper pulp with glue or paste.

      paragliding Recreational activity that consists of gliding in a parasail.

      parallel play Concept within developmental psychology that explains the manner in which children play side-by-side without interacting.

      Paralympics International sporting tournament for people who are physically disabled.

      pareto optimal outcome Also known as an efficient outcome; in this situation, one player's success causes another player's loss.

      pari-mutuel Form of betting used in horseracing, greyhound racing, jai alai, and other sports events that occur in a relatively short period of time. In pari-mutuel betting, all bets are held in a single pool and payoff odds are calculated according to the number of winning bets within that pool.

      Parten, Mildred (b. 1933) Psychologist who studies the development of young children's play.

      party games Multiplayer video games that generally consist of a variety of minigames.

      Password Word game in which one player must guess a word based on his or her partner's one-word clue.

      pastime Leisure activity; diversion.

      Patience British name for Solitaire.

      Patolli Game played by Aztecs, Mayans, and Toltecas.

      pattern-based puzzles Puzzles that are solved by recognizing and ordering a pattern (e.g., jigsaw puzzles, Rubik's Cube, etc.)

      Paume 12th-century French game that prefigures tennis.

      payoff Maximum benefit; the best reward possible in a given situation.

      payoff matrix Possible strategies available to a player and the payoff possible for making that choice depending on other players' actions.

      Peek-a-Boo Game played with babies. The adult hides his or her face, then reveals it, saying “boo.”

      Pe-Ling Version of Mahjong.

      Pelota Basque game that shares several characteristics and rules of Pallone con Braccialed; played in Belgium, Italy, Paraguay, and Uruguay.

      Pelotari Earlier version of Jai Alai; Cuban.

      Penny-Pricks Indoor game.

      Pentalitha Fivestones Game played in ancient Rome as a divination (by women) or to gamble (by men).

      pentathlon Athletic contest with five events.

      perceptual set Mental predisposition to perceive one thing in favor of another.

      Pétanque Also known as boules; French lawn bowling game.

      pet-raising simulation Digital pets; video games focused on how a player interacts with one or few life forms.

      Petrushka Russian version of Punch and Judy.

      phantasmagoria Optical illusion; used for projected ghost shows before the cinema was fully developed.

      phantasmagorical play Play involving fantasy and a juxtaposition of unlikely things; part of Brian Sutton-Smith's theories of play.

      phylogenetic perspectives Development over evolutionary time according to Vygotsky's evaluation of human development.

      physical activity Playworkers have to take physical activity into account when considering how to create the best play environment.

      physical games Parlor games blending movement and intuition.

      physical play Play that involves actual physical activity, as opposed to mental activity or virtual presence.

      Piaget, Jean (1896–1980) Swiss philosopher and developmental theorist who studied children and famously formed a theory of cognitive development.

      Picha Inca game involving dice; played in Ecuador and Peru.

      Pickle Variation of the chasing game known as Tag.

      pick-up games Variation of informal or friendly games.

      piggyback Ride on another person's shoulders or back.

      Piggy in the Ring Indoor game played in early Europe.

      Pirori Version of Hula Hoops played by the Maori of New Zealand.

      pitcher In baseball, the player who throws the ball to the catcher, trying to keep the batter from hitting it and scoring.

      pitcher's mound Slight elevation in the center of the baseball diamond where the pitcher stands.

      Planchette Triangular or heart-shaped device that moves to spell out messages in Ouija.

      platform games Video games that involve traveling between different levels, each of which is known as a platform.

      play community Group of people who join together to play a game, deciding upon the rules together.

      player entities Virtual characters created to operate within a videogame or an online game.

      Player versus Player (PvP) Video game or online competition between more than one live player. PvP stands in contrast to games that require a human player to compete against computer-generated characters.

      Play Ethos Peter K. Smith's formulation of the belief that play is an essential part of development.

      playground Outdoor area designed for children's play.

      Playground Association of America (PAA) American group founded in 1906 to promote parks as recreational facilities; later became the National Recreation Association.

      Playground for All Children Playground built in 1984 in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, Queens, New York City. This was the first playground designed for regular use by both disabled and able-bodied children.

      playground games Variation of informal or friendly games.

      playhouse Structure, however impermanent, in which children play games related to traditional home life.

      play supervisors Adults employed to help children with their play activities and to create a safe environment during the New Deal era in America.

      Pochen German version of Poker.

      Pochspiel German version of Poker.

      pocket billiards Also known as pool; game played on a pool table with six pockets.

      Podul de Piatra Romanian version of the children's song London Bridge.

      Poi Form of juggling with balls on ropes, held in hands, or swinging in various circle patterns practiced among the New Zealand Maori.

      pole vault Track and field event that involves jumping over a high horizontal crossbar with the aid of a long vertical pole.

      Polichinelle French version of Punch and Judy.

      Polyurethane Clear, durable finish applied to diverse materials including wood as a wear layer.

      pool Also known as pocket billiards; any game played on a pool table with six pockets.

      poppet Doll or puppet.

      Poque French card game similar to Poker brought to the port city of New Orleans during the early 19th century by itinerant traders and seamen.

      porcelain Ceramic material created by heating raw materials in a kiln.

      positional segregation Phenomenon in coed softball games where men take the skilled positions (pitcher, short stop, third base, and center field) and force women to take the less-skilled positions (catcher, first base, second base, and rover).

      positive reinforcement Addition of a positive stimulus as a response to a desired behavior (e.g., giving stickers to a child who has just picked up his or her toys).

      practical life One of the six key areas in Maria Montes-sori's schools.

      practice play Play that involves repeating specific motions necessary for mastery of a specific skill required for a sport or game.

      predicted probability Probability of winning, according to the casino, dealer, or sponsor of the game.

      pretend play play that involves imagining a situation, relationship, etc.

      pretense play Also known as symbolic play; involves transforming the physical world into a symbol (e.g., using a couch's cushions to create a fort).

      Primero English card game similar to Poker.

      private logic In contrast to common sense, private logic is an individual's reasoning to stimulate and justify a self-serving style of life. Private logic plays a large part in Alfred Adler's theories.

      probability Odds or chances of a particular outcome.

      professional Athlete who plays in return for payment.

      programming game Computer game that allows the player no direct influence over the course of the game and is written in a domain-specific programming language that controls the characters.

      Progressive Version of Whist.

      protective frame Part of the paratelic state in reversal theory; in this state, the protective frame allows people to see themselves as immune from the consequences of failure and error.

      prototype Standard or experimental example.

      Public Schools Athletic League (PSAL) First interscho-lastic sports program introduced by Luther Gulic in the New York City school system in 1903.

      puck Hard disc used in ice hockey (where it is made of hard, vulcanized rubber), floor hockey (where it is made of plastic), and shuffleboard (where it is made of metal and plastic).

      puck control Ability of a hockey player to control the movement of a puck with a hockey stick.

      Pulcinella Characters and puppet play from the 16th-century Italian Commedia dell'arte; became Punch and Judy.

      Punch Buggy Car game in which players attempt to locate and name any Volkswagen Beetles in sight.

      puppet Representational figure of person or animal controlled by an operator using strings held from above or supports from within (for example, using the hand or fingers).

      puzzle game Video games that ask the player to navigate a complex location like a maze or to solve a logic puzzle.

      Pyramids Also known as Castles; game played in ancient Rome using nuts and clay marbles.

      Q

      quantification Characteristic of contemporary organized play that manifests in measurements of and statistics on performance and competition.

      Questions and Answers Word-play parlor game.

      quoiting Ordinary material also used for play in early Europe.

      R

      race walking Long-distance athletic event in which one of the participant's feet must be in contact with the ground at all times.

      radio-controlled cars Powered model vehicles controlled from a distance by an operator holding a transmitter.

      rag doll Doll created entirely from fabric.

      Rainbow Whist Variation of Whist in which players choose to play a color instead of a lady or gent.

      randomized strategy Also known as a mixed strategy; probability distribution over a player's entire set of strategies.

      Rape Me, Rape Me Schoolyard game played in poor towns of South Africa that reenacts the sexual violence to which the children are subjected.

      rationalization Characteristic of contemporary organized play that manifests in strategies designed to gain a competitive advantage.

      real-time strategy game (RTS) Strategic video game in which players operate as if in real time, without stopping to let another player (live or computer-generated) take a turn.

      recapitulation Theory of play proposed by Hall in 1906, theory stating that in play people relive their evolutionary past.

      records Characteristic of contemporary organized play that manifests in the organization of quantifiable information historically to provide incentives for competitors to match or outperform record holders.

      Recreation Ground Act Law passed in 1859 in the United Kingdom to protect common land and to provide open spaces in urban areas for leisure activities.

      referee Official expected to maintain fair play in a sports competition.

      Relaxation and Recreation Theory Theory of play proposed by Lazarus (1883) and Patrick (1916) in which play activities to relax and release pressure are recommended as a follow-up to physically and mentally exhausting work.

      relay Race in which successive members of a team run a specified portion; the team's combined time is compared to other teams in order to determine a winner.

      relic doll Doll with a spiritual or ritual significance; rarely used as a plaything.

      retention Component process underlying observational learning.

      Réussites French game like Solitaire.

      Reversal Theory General psychological theory of personality, motivation and emotion formulated by British psychologist Michael J. Apter in 1970s.

      riddles Statements or questions with veiled meanings put forth as puzzles to be solved; often part of classroom play.

      right bower Jack of spades in Euchre.

      Rijwielspel Version of the card game Milks Bornes.

      ritual Playworkers have to take ritual into account when considering how to create the best play environment

      ritual play Play related to and used in social and/or religious rites.

      rod Also known as a pole, used to catch fish.

      roguelike Subgenre of video games involving a two-dimensional dungeon crawl. The game is random and emphasizes statistical character development.

      role-playing Form of mimicry in which a person pretends to be another person or pretends to be in a particular situation.

      role-playing games (RPG or CRPG) Video games based on traditional role-playing games. They generally cast the player as an adventurer who needs to travel through a predetermined storyline.

      rollerblade Inline skate with one row of wheels under the sole of the supporting shoe; similar in appearance to ice skates.

      Roshambo Alternative name for Rock Paper Scissors.

      Rounders Sport played by two teams who alternate between batting and fielding; based on the game of stool ball.

      Round the Corner Version of the game Play or Pay.

      rover Extra infielder who plays in slow pitch soffball.

      rowing Sport in which teams race on rivers, lakes, or oceans on boats propelled by the use of oars.

      Royal Game of Ur Egyptian board game.

      Royal Lottery Created in 1776 by Louis XVI to unify drawing games and to make all monetary gains created by those games state funds.

      rubber Elastic material, obtained from the latex tree, that can be vulcanized and finished into various products.

      Rubicon Piquet Variation of Piquet in which play is concluded in six hands.

      Rubik's Cube Mechanical puzzle invented in 1974 by Hungarian sculptor and professor of architecture Erno Rubik.

      Rubik's wrist Ailment developed by people who play with a Rubik's Cube continuously for hours on end.

      Ruff Version of Whist.

      Ruff and Honors Version of Whist.

      Rugby Football League (RFL) Governing body for rugby league in the United Kingdom.

      Rugby League One main code of rugby football, involving outdoor, full-contact play between two teams of 13 players on a rectangular field with a prolate spheroid-shaped ball.

      Rugby Union One main code of rugby football, involving outdoor, contact play between two teams of 15 players with an oval ball.

      rule benders People who follow the rules but who inno-vatively change the rules for better play or who know the rules but modify them in order to give themselves an advantage.

      rule changers People who evaluate the rules and change them to enhance play or to create a new game.

      rule ignorers People who understand that rules exist but choose not to follow them.

      rule manipulators People who know the rules but alter them in order to give themselves an advantage.

      rules Prescribed guides for actions; in games and sports, these are the agreed-upon conventions that govern play.

      Rummikub Tiled-based game for two, three, or four players.

      running events In track and field competitions, running events are those that occur on the track and that involve running to try to win a race.

      S

      sandbagging Inflating one's handicap index in order to try to win a game of golf.

      Sapo Literally “toad”; game played in Peru.

      Sara Iranian doll developed in response to Barbie.

      Scattergories Timed word game in which players must try to name an item for each of 12 characters. Each name must begin with the letter chosen by rolling a 20-sided dice.

      Seattles Version of Skittles where all the pins are numbered.

      Schema Established patterns of organization in which learning occurs, according to Piaget.

      Scissor Sandwich Rock Paper Scissors sequence of paper, scissors, paper.

      score Gain points in a game; number of points gained in a game.

      scratch Golfer with a handicap of zero or less.

      scrimmage Practice playing a sport.

      Scully Also known as Skelly or Caps, among other names; children's game played in New York City and other urban areas.

      secularism Characteristic of contemporary organized play that manifests in play for the benefit of the players, without attachment to religious observance or ritual.

      see-saw Also known as teeter-totter; board (relatively long and narrow) suspended in the middle so that, as one end goes up, the other goes down. SEGA

      Genesis 16-bit video game console sold starting in 1988.

      self-discovery Playworkers have to take this aspect into account when considering how to create the best play environment.

      self-efficacy Learned expectations about the probability of success in a given situation, as explained in Ban-dura's theory.

      Senet Egyptian board game.

      Sensation Seeking Scale Section of the Zuckerman-Kuhlman Personality Questionnaire devoted to determining the level of comfort a test taker has with taking risks or seeking sensation.

      sensitive period Period of six years representing a plane of development within Maria Montessori's theory.

      sensorial One of the six key areas in Maria Montessori's schools.

      sensorimotor play Play, especially play on the part of infants, that involves using newly developed sensorimotor skills (i.e., all aspects of movement, sensation, and the interaction of the two).

      sensory feedback In physical activities, the information provided from peripheral muscle contractions contributing to the awareness of muscle position.

      set Practice of setting a volleyball in a high trajectory, to be followed by a spike.

      shadow-puppet theater Ancient form of storytelling where the illusion of moving images is created through the use of opaque (and often articulated) figures in front of an illuminated backdrop.

      Shanghai Computer brand of Mahjongg Solitaire; may be a modernized version of the old Chinese game known as The Turtle.

      Shinny Simple version of hockey using a ball or can as the puck.

      shoot em up games Video game genre where the player controls a character's vehicle and shoots many enemies.

      shooter Colloquial term used to describe a move in marbles.

      shooter game Video game that focuses on combat using projectile weapons like guns and missiles; may be either third-person or first-person.

      Shove-Groat Original name for the game of Shuffle-board, often played by elderly people.

      Shuffle Early European game played on a table or board with a number of parallel lines positioned about an inch apart.

      Shuffleboard Game in which players shove wooden disks onto the scoring area marked on a smooth surface by using long sticks.

      Shuffleboard puck Combination metal and plastic disc used to play shuffleboard.

      shuttlecock High-drag projectile used in badminton. The shuttlecock is a cone formed by 16 overlapping feathers that meet in a ball of cork or rubber.

      Shuttlecock and Battledore Earlier version of badminton played with small rackets (called battledores) and shuttlecocks, which are passed back and forth over a net.

      Sickles Hand-eye coordination game played in colonial America; a ball with a hole in it is connected by string to a cup attached to a stick. The purpose of the game is to toss and catch the ball in the cup.

      simulation game Game that simulates a real situation (e.g., stock market, community planning board, etc.) by a mixture of skill, chance, and strategy.

      Skakalochka Games of skill including rope-skipping played by girls in Belarus.

      skateboard Board with wheels on which a rider stands or crouches and propels forward with one foot.

      Skibbie Variation of the chasing game known as Tag.

      ski jumping Sport that involves skiing down an “inrun” with a take-off ramp and jumping for distance and style.

      skill Learned ability.

      skipping rope Alternative name for jumping rope.

      Skitgubbe Swedish equivalent of Mattis, a beating game.

      Slalom Alpine ski race in which skiers must race between poles (“gates”).

      sled One of the most basic kite shapes.

      slide Plaything whose sloping chute allows children to descend.

      slingshot Y-shaped stick with elastic between the arms that allows children to propel small things.

      Sliothar Irish game in which the ball is similar in size to a hockey ball but has raised ridges.

      slope rating Rating of a golf course's relative degree of difficulty for an average golfer.

      Snakes and Ladders Board game for two to four players that involves rewarding virtues and punishing vices.

      Snooker Form of pool played with 21 object balls and one cue ball.

      Snowboarding Inspired by surfing and skateboarding; involves descending a snow-covered hill with both feet attached to a single snowboard.

      soccer ball Inflated ball designed for use in the game of soccer.

      Soccerex International business organization that centers on non-American football.

      Social Cognitive Theory Explains individual's knowledge acquisition as directly related to the observation of others within the context of social interactions and experiences outside of media influences.

      socialization and social interaction Playworkers have to take this aspect into account when considering how to create the best play environment.

      Social-Learning Theory Bandura's theory of learning, which emphasizes the role of observation as a means of learning.

      social play Involves interaction between peers.

      sociodramatic play Type of free play that allows children to creatively and imaginatively engage in social interactions.

      sociohistorical perspectives In Vygotsky's evaluation of human development, the changes that occur in a culture and the values, norms, and technologies that history as created.

      Solitaire Mahjong May be a modernized version of the old Chinese game known as The Turtle.

      solitary play Independent play.

      Son of Beast Roller coaster.

      Soul Surfers Online platform for international surfboard development projects.

      Spades Suit of cards that represent the nobility in France.

      Spaghettis Name for a marble with a particular color and pattern.

      Spaldeens Small pink rubber ball. The product's name is the Spalding High-Bounce Ball.

      Spanish Top Variety of spinning top.

      spans Colloquial term used to describe a move in Marbles.

      Spar Dame Norwegian equivalent to Hearts.

      spatial intelligence Ability to visualize and judge physical spaces.

      spatial skill Ability to understand the three-dimensional reality of a plan drawn or described.

      specialization Characteristic of contemporary organized play that manifests in individuals who choose particular sports activities and particular roles or positions within that sport in order to achieve a competitive edge.

      Speed skiing Sport in which competitors ski down a straight path as quickly as they can.

      spike Practice of following a set with a rapid downward motion of the ball onto the other side of the net in volleyball.

      spinner Domino.

      spooning Swinging the croquet mallet in an arc.

      spoon puppet plays Plays in which puppets made out of spoons (generally wooden spoons) serve as characters; popular in Armenia.

      sports game Video game that simulates a sports event.

      Spot Hearts Variation of Hearts in which every heart card is worth face value.

      Sprinkling Hungarian game played at Easter. This game involves young men visiting young women, sprinkling them with water, and other traditional events.

      Spud Variation of the chasing game known as Tag.

      spurn Ordinary material also used for play in early Europe.

      spurring Misconduct in Leapfrog where a player knuckles down with fists into the shoulders or back of the player being jumped over.

      squidger Larger disc with which one plays the winks in Tiddlywinks.

      SRO Silkroad Online.

      stadium Sports arena with seating for spectators.

      Stag Hunting Variation of Hares and Hounds.

      stake Money risked in a bet.

      stand In Blackjack, the term indicating that a player does not want another card.

      standard deck Deck of 52 playing cards.

      stealth games Video games that require subterfuge and specific, planned kills instead of overt mass killings.

      steeplechase Foot or horse race with obstacles.

      Steinstossen Heavy rock-throwing competition held in Sweden.

      Stick ball Urban game similar to baseball but played with a broomstick and rubber ball.

      stone Domino.

      stone Piece moved around the board in Checkers.

      stoolball Game played by women in Europe and colonial America. The game called for three stones to be bowled at a three-legged milking stool; later evolved into cricket.

      Stoop ball Game played by throwing a ball against the stoop of a building; usually an urban game.

      Straight Poker Hand consisting of five consecutive cards, regardless of suit.

      Stratacoaster Roller coaster.

      strategy game Game that requires a player to make decisions in order to play.

      Street Playground Act of 1938 United Kingdom law establishing play streets; lasted until the 1990s.

      Streets and Alleys Variation of the chasing game known as Tag.

      strictly competitive game Also known as a zero-sum game; game in which one player's interests are strictly contradictory to another player's.

      strictly dominant Always yields the best outcome regardless of what the other players do.

      string games Game played by manipulating string (e.g., Cat's Cradle).

      stroke play Game of golf in which the player with the lowest number of strokes wins.

      structured play Play with specific rules and objectives; usually designed by an adult.

      Stud Game Any version of Poker in which the players are dealt a mixture of face-down and face-up cards.

      Submarine Also known as Alligator Eyes; variation of the water game Marco Polo. When the person who is “it” calls “submarine,” she or he can swim underwater with eyes open for one breath.

      Success French version of Solitaire.

      Super Chexx Also known as Bubble Hockey and Boobla; tabletop arcade hockey game covered by a special bubble dome.

      superego In psychoanalytic theory, the part of the psyche that has internalized society's values and standards.

      SuperG Also known as Supergiant Slalom; alpine ski race in which skiers must race between poles (“gates”) spaced at distances of 14 to 16 percent of the total vertical drop.

      superhero Fictional crime-fighting character with supernatural powers or equipment; popular in children's comics and fantasy literature.

      surrender In Blackjack, the term indicating that a player forfeits half of the bet and gives up the hand.

      survivor horror games Video games that include traditional elements from horror movies, including characters considered “undead.”

      Sutton-Smith, Brian (b. 1924) Play theorist.

      swing Play thing that allows movement back and forth in an arc.

      symbolic play Also known as pretense play; involves transforming the physical world into a symbol (e.g., using a couch's cushions to create a fort).

      sympathy One of the human attributes developed during play.

      T

      Tableaux Vivante Dramatic parlor game in which a famous painting is reenacted.

      table football Tabletop game based on soccer, or association football.

      table soccer Also known as baby foot, foosball, and table football; tabletop game based on soccer, or association football.

      table tennis Also known as Ping Pong; game resembling tennis played on a table with paddles and a hollow ball.

      Taboo Word game where teams compete to see who can guess the most words without using the phrases listed on the cards.

      Tacanaco Incan board game that moves colored beans or seeds around the board using dice; played in Bolivia, Equador, and Peru.

      tackraw Ball made from woven rattan and used in Thailand.

      tactical role-playing game (TRPG) Sub-genre of video games that incorporate features of strategy games.

      tactical shooters Variation of first-person shooter games and, less frequently, of third-person shooter games in which the player must carefully consider planning and teamwork.

      tan Viking word for board; means game played on board.

      Tagati'a Traditional Samoan show of prowess and skill for men who are training for battle. The competition involves about a hundred people who are involved in javelin throwing and relies on distance and accuracy.

      Taipei Computer brand of Mahjong Solitaire; may be a modernized version of the old Chinese game known as The Turtle.

      takeovers Colloquial term used to describe a move in marbles.

      TakrawA kick volleyball-type game played with a rattan ball; now recognized as a sport by the Southeast Asia Games.

      tally Score.

      target Sports equipment consisting of an object at which an archer or marksman aims.

      Tarot Set of 78 divination cards.

      Tauromachy Popular sport in Spain and Mexico where a matador taunts and kills a bull at close range.

      Tavla Turkish version of Backgammon played in Bulgaria, Iraq, Pakistan, and Syria.

      taw Term used to describe a move in Marbles.

      law Egyptian version of marbles.

      team cooperative Unit in sports or games.

      Tebar Jala Literally “throwing the casting net”; played in Malaysia.

      teeter-totter Also known as a see-saw; board (relatively long and narrow) suspended in the middle so that as one end goes up, the other goes down.

      Teka Spear-throwing game practiced by the Maori of New Zealand.

      Telemark Turn made in skiing when the outside ski is placed ahead and turned gradually inward.

      Ten-Pin Bowling Sport or recreational activity that involves rolling a bowling ball down a wood or synthetic lane with the intention of knocking down as many of the 10 pins as possible; common version of bowling in the United States.

      tesserae Playing dice with six sides developed in ancient Rome.

      Texas Hold Em Variety of Poker in which players may use any combination of five community cards and their own two hole cards to make a hand.

      text adventure Also known as interactive fiction games; video games that require players to make choices in order to guide the course of the game, which the computer would then describe.

      third-person shooter game (TPS or 3PS) Video game in which the player-character is viewed from a distance so shooting and combat are seen from a camera perspective.

      Thompson, E.P. (1924–93) English historian and socialist whose most famous work is The Making of the English Working Class.

      Thumbs Up Another version of the classroom game called Seven Up.

      ticket Domino.

      Tic-Tac-Toe North American version of Noughts and Crosses.

      Tig Version of Tag played in New Zealand.

      Tiggy Variation of the chasing game known as Tag.

      tile Domino.

      Tipcat Hungarian hitting stick game that likely came along eastern trading routes to the West.

      To Tom Vietnamese card game; literally “shrimp's nest.”

      Touring Version of the card game Milks Bornes.

      tournament Sporting competition in which a series of games are played before a winner is determined.

      Tower of Terror Roller coaster.

      trading cards Collectible cards (e.g., baseball cards) that are not used for a particular game but that may be traded in order to add to a collection.

      trail running Running on hiking trails.

      transformation decks Playing cards where the traditional pips are replaced by an artist's drawings.

      transitional object Object, like a blanket or stuffed animal, to which children become attached and use for comfort.

      tree houses Structure built within the branches of a tree and used like a club house or a playhouse.

      Tres en Raya Spanish version of Noughts and Crosses.

      triathlon athletic competition involving swimming, cycling, and running.

      trick In cards, the sequence of all the cards played in a single round.

      trick avoidance games Like Hearts, Euchre, and Whist, where players attempt to evade taking tricks with cards containing penalties.

      trickster Folktale character who tries to outsmart or outwit others but who does not always succeed. Often, the trickster's actions offer a lesson from which audience members may learn a valuable social lesson.

      trick-taking card game Card games centered on a series of finite rounds known as tricks (e.g., Euchre, Bridge, Spades, Hearts, Pinochle, etc.).

      Trip Him Up Game played in Belgium.

      triple jump Field and track competition for which the competitor hops, skips, and then jumps into a sandpit, attempting to achieve the greatest horizontal distance.

      Troco English lawn game played with balls, cues, and rings; the forerunner of Croquet.

      trottok Italian tops that are often thrown as part of games.

      trump In card games, the suit that has been declared to rank above all others for one hand.

      TSR Tactical Studies Rules

      Tugge Variation of the chasing game known as Tag.

      Tug-of-War Sport or activity in which two teams hold opposite ends of a rope, each trying to pull the other side over a dividing line to win the contest.

      turned doll Wood doll created through the turning of wood on a lathe.

      Turtle Computer brand of Mahjongg Solitaire; may be a modernized version of the old Chinese game known as The Turtle. TV

      Tag Variation of the chasing game known as Tag where safety can be achieved by stopping and naming a television show.

      Twenty-One Also known as Blackjack; card game in which the player tries to get as close to 21 points as possible without going over.

      U

      ultimate Frisbee Noncontact team sport in which each team attempts to move the Frisbee to an end zone in order to score.

      umpire Official responsible for mainting fair play and maintaining the rules in a sports competition.

      unconscious absorbent mind First stage of Montes-sori's formulation of the absorbent mind. In this stage, children from birth to age three unconsciously acquire basic skills.

      United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) International convention adopted in 1989 to define the civil, economic, political, social, and cultural rights of children.

      United States Table Soccer Association (USTSA) American nonprofit organization associated with the International Table Soccer Federation (ITSF).

      unoccupied play Not actively engaged in play.

      Uomo Nero Also known as Black Man and Bogie Man; Italian version of Old Maid.

      Upwords Word game like Scrabble, but where tiles can be piled on top of each other to create new words.

      urban exploration Exploration of normally unseen areas (like rooftops, sewers, and underground utility tunnels) both in reality and in virtual reality game scenarios.

      Urban Park and Recreation Recovery Program American program established in 1978 to provide direct federal assistance to urban localities for rehabilitation of critically needed recreation facilities and to encourage systematic local planning and commitment to continuing operation and maintenance of recreation programs, sites, and facilities.

      USA Gymnastics (USAG) Governing body for gymnastics in the United States.

      USA Rock Paper Scissors League Organization devoted to playing and strategizing about Rock Paper Scissors; founded in 2006 in the United States.

      USA Volleyball Formerly known as the United States Volleyball Association (USVBA), the organization that governs volleyball competition and play throughout the United States.

      U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission American agency whose mission is to protect the public from unreasonable risks of injury or death. Special controls have been enacted in regard to toys and other products marketed for children.

      V

      Veblen, Thorstein (1857–1929) Norwegian-American sociologist and economist whose most famous work is The Theory of the Leisure Class.

      vehicle simulation Video games that offer a realistic interpretation of driving a vehicle.

      verbal dexterity Skill and ease with using words.

      verbal dueling Games that require players to battle with words.

      versus fighters Also known as fighting simulation video games; an action video game that literally simulates one-on-one combat.

      vertical loop Basic roller coaster inversion that involves a continuously upward-sloping track that eventually completes a 360-degree loop.

      vertigo Dizziness; illusion of movement; feeling of falling.

      video game Game designed for play on a computer or computerized system.

      video game system Computer platform that supports the play of video games.

      Viking-Con Role-playing game conference held each fall in Copenhagen.

      vinyl Shiny, tough, and flexible plastic.

      virtual learning Learning that occurs through a variety of technological and at-a-distance techniques, but also through creating imaginary companions.

      visual novel Video game with anime-style graphics that allows players to build plots as they proceed.

      visual-spatial reasoning Ability to understand the three-dimensional reality of a drawing and to understand the two-dimensional reality of a space.

      vocabulary game Any game designed to help improve vocabulary.

      von Neumann, John (1903–57) Hungarian-American mathematician whose works contributed to many fields, including game theory.

      VriAtter Norwegian equivalent to the card game Crazy Eights.

      Vygotsky, Lev (1896–1934) Russian developmental psychologist who founded cultural-historical psychology. Vygotsky's sociocultural theory focuses on child development and learning.

      W

      Wall Ball Group game that involves throwing a ball against a building; usually an urban game.

      Wana Aboriginal Australian game played by girls, teaching them to defend their young by warding off attacks from other girls with large sticks.

      Wargames Subgenre of video games that focus on strategic or tactical warfare on a map; game that simulates a military operation.

      water skiing Sport or recreational activity that involves pulling a person on one or two skis behind a motor boat or cable-ski installation. The skier skims along the surface of the water.

      Wayang Kulit Indonesian or Malaysian shadow puppets operated from behind a screen.

      weakly dominant Strategy that yields an outcome at least as good and possibly better than an alternative strategy.

      Wheel of Fortune American game show, board game, and video game modeled on Hangman. A word is indicated by blank spaces and players spin the wheel to determine how much money each letter will be worth and choose letters to fill in the blank puzzle. The goal is to win as much money as possible by correctly solving the puzzle.

      whipping tops Type of spinning top moved by whipping.

      Whist Trick-taking game with fixed partnerships and no bidding.

      whittle Pare shavings from or cut little bits; like carving, can be used to create dolls and figurines.

      wicket Small arch used in Croquet; three stumps topped by crosspieces in cricket.

      Widow Version of Hearts.

      Wii Home video game console released by Nintendo in 2005.

      willing suspension of disbelief Aesthetic theory that refers to the willingness of a person to accept the premises of a work of fiction as true, even if they are fantastic or impossible.

      winks Plastic discs used in Tiddlywinks.

      word cross Early version of crossword puzzle.

      word grids Games that require players to place words within a grid (e.g., crossword puzzles).

      World Bridge Championship Competition organized every four years by the World Bridge Federation.

      World Chess Federation (FIDE) Organization that oversees international chess competition.

      World Cube Association Organization that organizes official international competitions of the Rubik's Cube and other Rubik's puzzles.

      World Rock Paper Scissors Society Group devoted to playing and strategizing about Rock Paper Scissors; founded in 1918 as a successor to the Paper Scissors Stone Club.

      World Scrabble Championship International English-language Scrabble tournament held every two years.

      World Series of Poker (WSOP) Annual Poker competition held in Las Vegas; consists of 55 events.

      Y

      Ya Pai Version of Mahjong.

      Yas Popular Swedish card game similar to Belote.

      Ye Triumphe Version of Whist dating back to 1522, more popularly called Ruff and Honors.

      Yo' Mama Urban verbal dueling game in which players compete to best each other with a derogatory “yo' mama” joke.

      Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) Organization dedicated to putting Christian practices into practice. Founded in 1844, the YMCA has offered housing, recreation, and bible study.

      Young Pioneers Movement Communist youth organization; groups existed in virtually every Communist state, including China, Cuba, and Turkmenistan.

      Young Women's Christian Association (YWCA) Counterpart of YMCA dedicated to women and women's causes; founded in 1855.

      Yut Korean board game played especially during Korean New Year.

      Z

      zero-player game Computer game that uses artificial intelligence instead of players.

      zero-sum game Game in which one player's interests are strictly contradictory to another player's; also known as a strictly competitive game.

      Zieh Durch German version of children's song London Bridge.

      zone of proximal development (ZPD) Second aspect of Vygotsky's theory; level of development attained when children engage in social behavior, with full development being dependent on full social interaction.

      Anastasia L. Pratt State University of New York

      Resource Guide

      Resource guide
      Books

      Ariès, P. Centuries of Childhood; A Social History of Family Life (Alfred A. Knopf, 1962)

      Avedon, E.M. and Sutton-Smith, B., eds., The Study of Games (John Wiley & Sons, 1971)

      Axelrod, R. The Evolution of Cooperation (Basic Books, 1984)

      Bancroft, J.H. Games for the Playground, Home, School, and Gymnasium (Macmillan Co., 1909)

      Bandura, A. Social Learning Theory (Prentice Hall, 1976)

      Bengtsson A. Adventure Playgrounds (Crosby Lock-wood, 1972)

      Bennett, D. Randomness (Harvard University Press, 1999)

      Botermans, J. The Book of Games: Strategy, Tactics, & History (Sterling Publishing, 2008)

      Brisick, J. Have Board Will Travel: The Definitive History of Surf, Skate, and Snow (HarperCollins, 2004)

      Brosterman, N. Inventing Kindergarten (Harry Abrams, 1997)

      Burghardt, G. The Genesis of Animal Play (MIT, 2007)

      Caillois, R. Man, Play and Games (University of Illinois Press, 2001)

      Cassell, P. CasselVs Book of Sports and Pastimes (Cassell, Petter, Galpin & Co., 1890)

      Champlin, J. J. and Bostwick, A.E. Young Folks' Cyclopedia of Games and Sports (Henry Holt & Company, 1890)

      Choquet, D., ed., 1000 Game Heroes (Taschen, 2002)

      Chudacoff, H.P Children at Play: An American History (New York University Press, 2007)

      Cohen, D. Development of Play (Routledge, 1993)

      Cotton, C. The Compleat Gamester (Imprint Society, 1970)

      Cunningham, H. Children and Childhood in Western Society Since 1500 (Pearson Education, 2005)

      Daiken, L. Children's Games Throughout the Year (Batsford, 1949)

      DeMario, R. and Wilson, J.L. High Score: The Illustrated History of Electronic Games (McGraw Hill, 2004)

      Diagram Group, The Little Giant Encyclopedia of Card Games (Sterling Publishing, 1995)

      Erikson, E. Childhood and Society (W.W. Norton, 1964)

      Fagen, R. Animal Play Behavior (Oxford University Press, 1981)

      Forster, W The Encyclopedia of Game Machines: Consoles, Handhelds and Home Computers 1972–2005 (Gameplan, 2007)

      Gaunt, K.D. The Games Black Girls Play: Learning the Ropes from Double-Dutch to Hip Hop (New York University Press, 2006)

      Gerber, S.M. Hobbies: Leisure and the Culture of Work in America (Columbia University Press, 1999)

      Greenaway, K. Kate Greenaway's Book of Games (Frederick Warne & Co., Ltd., 1890)

      Groos, K. The Play of Man (Appleton-Century-Crofts, 1901)

      Grunfeld, F.V., ed., Games of the World: How to Make Them, How to Play Them, How They Came to Be (Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1975)

      Guinness World Records: Gamer's Edition 2008 (Guinness World Records Limited, 2008)

      Gussin Paley, V. A Child's Work: The Importance of Fantasy Play (University of Chicago Press, 2004)

      Hawes, J.M. and Hiner, N.R. American Childhood: A Research Guide and Historical Handbook (Greenwood Press, 1985)

      Herman, R.D. Gamblers and Gambling (Lexington Books, 1976)

      Herz, J.C. Joystick Nation: How Videogames Gobbled Our Money, Won Our Hearts, and Rewired Our Minds (Abacus, 1997)

      Heywood, C. A History of Childhood: Children and Childhood in the West From Medieval to Modern Times (Polity Press, 2001)

      Hoffmann, E, Manning, M., and Augustyn Jr., EJ. Dictionary of Toys and Games in American Popular Culture (Routledge, 2004)

      Hoyle, E., Mott-Smith, G., Morehead, P., and More-head, A.H., eds., Hoyle's Rules of Games (Signet, 2001)

      Huizinga, J. Homo Ludens: A Study of the Play Element in Culture (Beacon Press, 1955)

      Iso-Ahola, S. The Social Psychology of Leisure and Recreation (Wm. C. Brown Publishers, 1980)

      Jay, R. Dice: Deception, Fate, and Rotten Luck (Quantuck Lane Press, 2003)

      Kent, S.L. The Ultimate History of Video Games: The Story Behind the Craze That Touched Our Lives and Changed the World (Three Rivers Press, 2001)

      Kline, S. Out of the Garden: Toys and Children's Culture in the Age of TV Marketing (Verso, 1993)

      Lucien, K. Game On: The History and Culture of Videogames (Universe Publishing, 2002)

      Lyotard, J.-E The Postmodern Condition: A Report on Knowledge (University of Minnesota, 1984)

      Lyster, M. Strange Adventures of the Dangerous Sports Club (The Do-Not Press, 1997)

      Montessori, M. The Secret of Childhood (Random House, 1982)

      Nister, E. The Game Book for Boys and Girls: A Volume of Old and New Pastimes (E.P Dutton & Co., 1897)

      Opie, I. and Opie, P. Children's Games in Street and Playground (Clarendon Press, 1969)

      Opie, I. and Opie, P. Children's Games With Things (Oxford University Press, 1997)

      Orme, N. Medieval Children (Yale University Press, 2001)

      Ormrod, J.E. Human Learning (Prentice Hall, 1976)

      Parlett, D. The Oxford History of Board Games (Oxford University Press, 1999)

      Perry Hargrave, C. A History of Playing Cards and a Bibliography of Cards and Gaming (Dover, 1991)

      Piaget, J. Play, Dreams and Imitation in Childhood (Norton, 1962)

      Piers, M. and Landau, G. The Gift of Play (Walker and Co. 1980)

      Pollard, J. Sports of All Sorts (McLoughlin, 1889)

      Power, T.G. Play and Exploration in Children and Animals (Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 2001)

      Richardson, H.D. Holiday Sports and Pastimes for Boys (William S. Orr & Company, 1848)

      Roopnarine, J.L., Johnson, J.E., and Hooper, EH., eds., Children's Play in Diverse Cultures (SUNY Press, 1994)

      Siedentop, D., Hastie, P., and Van der Mars, H. Complete Guide to Sport Education (Human Kinetics, 2004)

      Silvey, A. Children's Books and Their Creators (Hough-ton Mifflin, 1995)

      Simonds Mohr, M. The Games Treasury: More Than 300 Indoor and Outdoor Favorites With Strategies, Rules and Traditions (Chapters Publishing, 1993)

      Singer, D. and Singer, J.L. The House of Make-Believe: Children's Play and the Developing Imagination (Harvard University Press, 1990)

      Singer, J.L. Daydreaming and Fantasy (George Allen & Unwin Ltd., 1976)

      Steams, PN. Childhood in World History (Routledge, 2006)

      Sutton-Smith, B. The Ambiguity of Play (Harvard University Press, 1997)

      Sutton-Smith, B. The Folkgames of Children (University of Texas Press, 1972)

      Terr, L. Beyond Love and Work: Why Adults Need to Play (Scribner, 1999)

      Thomas, S.G. Buy, Buy Baby: How Consumer Culture Manipulates Parents and Harms Young Minds (Houghton Mifflin, 2007)

      Vecsey, G. Baseball: A History of America's Favorite Game (The Modern Library, 2006)

      Vygotsky, L. Mind in Society (Harvard University Press, 1978)

      Vygotsky, L. Thought and Language (MIT Press, 1962)

      Waggoner, S. Under the Tree: The Toys and Treats That Made Christmas Special 1930–1970 (Stuart, Tabori, and Chang, 2007)

      Whitehill, B. Games: American Boxed Games and Their Makers 1822–1992 With Values (Wallace-Homestead Book Company, 1992)

      Whitehouse, ER.B. Table Games of Georgian and Victorian Days (Peter Garnett, 1951)

      Williams, S. The Boy's Treasury of Sports, Pastimes, and Recreations (Lea and Blanchard, 1847)

      Woods Winnicott, D. Playing and Reality (Basic Books 1971)

      Woods Winnicott, D. The Child, the Family, and the Outside World (Addison Wesley, 1987)

      Journals

      American Educational Research Journal

      American Journal of Play

      American Sociological Review

      Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science

      Canadian Journal of Behavioural Science

      Child Development

      Childhood Education

      Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood

      Foundations of Sport and Exercise Psychology

      Games and Culture

      Health & Place

      Health, Risk & Society

      Human Development

      Infant Behavior and Development

      International Journal of Behavioral Development

      International Journal of Play Therapy

      Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology

      Journal of Applied Sport Psychology

      Journal of Consulting Psychology

      Journal of Education

      Journal of Personality and Social Psychology

      Journal of Philosophy in Sport

      Journal of Research in Childhood Education

      Journal of Social History

      Journal of Sport Behavior

      Peabody Journal of Education

      PsychNology Journal

      Social Forces

      Internet

      Avalon Hill http://www.wizards.com/avalonhill

      Cossacks II http://www.cossacks2.de

      Diplomacy http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=ah/prod/diplomacy

      Dragon Quest Player's Association http://www.dragonquest.org

      Dragon Warrior http://www.mobygames.com/game/dragon-warrior

      Dungeon Lords http://www.dungeonlordsgame.com

      Dungeons & Dragons http://www.wizards.com/DnD

      Elliot Avedon Museum of Archive of Games http://www.gamesmuseum.uwaterloo.ca

      Fisher-Price http://www.fisher-price.com

      Handheld Games Museum http://www.handheldmuseum.com

      Hasbro http://www.hasbro.com

      Imperial Toys http://www.imperialtoy.com

      International Play Association http://www.ipaworld.org

      International Playing Card Society http://www.i-p-c-s.org

      JAKKS-Pacific http://www.jakkspacific.com

      Just a Minute http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/comedy/justaminute.shtml

      Kids' Games http://www.gameskidsplay.net

      Legend of Zelda http://www.zelda.com

      LEGO http://www.lego.com

      Lionel http://www.lionel.com

      Mattel http://www.mattel.com

      Miniature Wargaming http://www.miniaturewargaming.com

      Mortal Kombat http://www.mortalkombat.com

      National Recreation and Park Association http://www.nrpa.org

      Playing Cards http://playing-cards.us/main.html

      Playskool http://www.hasbro.com/playskool

      Retro Games http://www.retrogames.co.uk

      Rubik's Cube http://www.rubiks.com

      Runescape http://www.runescape.com

      Scrabble http://www.scrabble.com

      Silkroad Online http://www.silkroadonline.net

      Sim City http://www.simcity.ea.com

      Streetfigher I and II http://www.streetfighter.com

      Strong National Museum of Play http://www.strongmuseum.org

      Tiger Electronics http://www.tigertoys.com

      Tomb Raider http://www.tombraider.com

      TOMY http://www.tomy.com

      TSR http://www.tsr.com

      Victoria and Albert Museum of Childhood http://www.vam.ac.uk/moc

      World of Warcraft http://www.worldofwarcraft.com

      Appendix A: Play Statistics

      Appendix A: Play statistics

      As reported in the news media, in the midst of a severe recession in 2008, Americans were working more and playing less. In a poll conducted by Harris Interactive in October 2008,1,010 adults were surveyed by phone about their leisure activities. The results indicated that, including housekeeping and studying, Americans spent 46 hours a week working, and the median time spent playing per week was 16 hours.

      The Harris survey further showed time spent working rose by one hour compared with 2007, but play time had dropped by four hours, or by 20 percent. In 2007, median time per week spent in leisure activities was 20 hours. Harris suggested that the missing three hours were spent in a “nebulous, grey area” that Americans considered neither working nor playing. “As the American economic situation worsened, people who were worried about their jobs spent more time ‘just checking in’ via computer or wireless device,” Harris explained.

      “While our respondents didn't consider this as time spent working, they also didn't count it as leisure time … landing instead in a nebulous grey area,” the polling agency said. Time spent by Americans in play pursuits approached an all-time low since 1973, when Harris began tracking how Americans work and spend their free time. AFP and Yahoo! online news services summarized the situation as follows: “Thirty-five years ago, Americans worked 41 hours and played more than half that amount—26 hours, or around two-thirds of the time they spent working. This year, the play to work ratio was around half of what it was in 1973: play-time was less than 35 percent of work-time in 2008. Asked how they liked to spend their leisure time, 30 percent of Americans chose reading as their favorite activity, up one percentage point from 2007. Next came watching television which 24 percent of Americans said was their preferred leisure activity this year compared with 18 percent last year. In third, at 17 percent, was spending time with family, up three points from 2007, the poll showed.”

      Following in this appendix is a collection of data in charts and tables on play and leisure time.

      Appendix B: FTC Report

      Appendix B: FTC report

      FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION: A Report to Congress

      Marketing Violent Entertainment to Children

      A Fifth Follow-up Review of Industry Practices in the Motion Picture, Music Recording & Electronic Game Industries

      April 2007

      FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION Deborah Platt Majoras, Chairman Pamela Iones Harbour, Commissioner Ion Leibowitz, Commissioner William E. Kovacic, Commissioner J. Thomas Rosch, Commissioner.

      Commissioner Rosch did not participate by reason of recusal.

      REPORT CONTRIBUTORS Richard E Kelly, Bureau of Consumer Protection, Division of Advertising Practices Keith R. Fentonmiller, Bureau of Consumer Protection, Division of Advertising Practices Carol lennings, Bureau of Consumer Protection, Division of Advertising Practices Richard Quaresima, Assistant Director, Bureau of Consumer Protection, Division of Advertising Practices Mary K. Engle, Associate Director, Bureau of Consumer Protection, Division of Advertising Practices

      RESEARCH ASSISTANCE Manoj Hastak, Bureau of Consumer Protection, Division of Advertising Practices Joseph Mulholland, Bureau of Economics, Division of Consumer Protection Brendan Cunningham, Bureau of Economics, Division of Consumer Protection Diana Finegold, Bureau of Consumer Protection, Division of Advertising Practices Katherine Zownir, Bureau of Consumer Protection, Division of Advertising Practices

      ADVERTISING REVIEW Sallie Schools, Bureau of Consumer Protection, Division of Advertising Practices Aine Farrell, Bureau of Consumer Protection, Division of Advertising Practices Lynne Colbert, Bureau of Consumer Protection, Division of Advertising Practices Monica Wilson, Bureau of Consumer Protection, Division of Advertising Practices Rachel Lang, Bureau of Consumer Protection, Division of Advertising Practices Wesley Romeiser, Bureau of Consumer Protection, Division of Advertising Practices

      Executive Summary

      This is the sixth Commission Report on the marketing to children of violent entertainment products by the motion picture, music recording, and electronic game industries.

      The Commission's initial report, released in September 2000, examined the structure and operation of each industry's self-regulatory program, parental familiarity and use of those systems, and whether the industries had marketed violent entertainment products in a manner inconsistent with their own parental advisories. The 2000 Report found that industry members routinely targeted children in their advertising and marketing of violent entertainment products and that children under age 17 could purchase these products relatively easily. The Commission called upon the industries to strengthen their self-regulatory programs by: (1) prohibiting target marketing to children and imposing sanctions for violations; (2) improving self-regulatory programs at the retail level; and (3) increasing parental awareness of the ratings and labels. The Commission has continued to monitor industry self-regulation in this area, releasing four subsequent reports, all finding that the movie and electronic game industries had made progress in limiting marketing of R- and M-rated products to children, but that the music recording industry had not significantly changed its marketing practices since the Commission's initial report.

      This Report documents the current state of marketing in the areas addressed in the Commission's previous reports. It includes a review of marketing documents from industry members; the results of ongoing Commission monitoring of television, print, and Internet advertising; and comments from third parties regarding the rating and labeling systems. In addition, it reports on a Commission-sponsored telephone survey of parents and children regarding their familiarity with and use of the video game rating system. It also provides the results of an undercover “mystery” shopper survey conducted in December 2005 and the spring of 2006, in which young teens attempted to purchase tickets to R-rated movies, or to buy music recordings with a Parental Advisory Label, R-rated and unrated movie DVDs, and M-rated games.

      All three industries generally comply with their own voluntary standards regarding the display of ratings and labels. But, as the Commission has mentioned in previous reports, the limited anti-targeting advertising standards the industries have adopted still permit the advertising of these violent entertainment products in many of the media most popular with teens. This is particularly true in the evolving online advertising market.

      Movies

      The Commission's review of internal marketing documents for selected R-rated films showed that the studios did not specifically target advertising for those films at children under 17. The industry, however, continues to advertise R-rated movies on television shows popular with children under age 17, and some advertising violated the standard adopted by several studios that prohibits the placement of advertisements for R-rated films in media with an under-17 audience share over 35%. The Commission's examination of the Internet advertising for twenty R-rated movies revealed that 90% were advertised on websites where under-17 visitors constitute one third or more of the audience. On several of these sites, children under 17 comprise more than half the audience.

      The industry continues to do a good job of disclosing ratings and rating reasons in television and print advertising, and on studio websites. Many studios market their movies through dedicated profile pages on the popular social networking site, http://MySpace.com. The Commission found, however, that few of these profile pages displayed rating information. In addition, movie DVD retailers still do not display rating reasons most of the time, nor do the two major movie DVD kiosk companies.

      As to rating enforcement, the Commission's mystery shopper survey showed that movie theaters' performance has not changed in the last three years. About four in ten underage children were able to gain admission, unaccompanied, to R-rated films. Retailers who sell R-rated DVDs allowed seven in ten shoppers under age 17 to purchase these movies. The same percentage of children also were able to purchase unrated versions of movies released theatrically with R ratings (e.g., “Director's Cuts”). Many of these unrated movies contained content that, if rated with the movie, might have led to an NC-17 rating.

      Finally, the Commission notes that the industry's inconsistent characterization of the level of violence in PG-13 movies compared to R-rated movies may be confusing to parents. Although parents report a relatively high satisfaction level with the Motion Picture Association of America (“MPAA”) system, some critics assert that, over time, “ratings creep” has resulted in more violence in films rated PG and PG-13. Some have argued that the level of violence in PG-13-rated movies, in particular, has increased over time, blurring the line between PG-13- and R-rated violent content.

      Music

      The Commission's review of internal marketing documents and ad placements for explicit-content labeled music showed that the major record labels did not specifically target advertising for those albums to children under 17. There were few ads in print media popular with teens, but the music industry continues to advertise on cable TV shows with young teen audiences of 40% or more. In addition, the industry advertised music with a parental advisory label on websites reaching a substantial percentage of children under 17.

      Few retailers have effective policies to prevent children from buying music bearing a Parental Advisory Label (“PAL”). As a result, 76% of the teen shoppers in the Commission's undercover shopper survey were able to purchase explicit-content labeled CDs.

      The industry is doing a good job of displaying the PAL in print advertising, but not television advertising. Online display of the PAL is weak as well, both on the official artist and record company websites and on MySpace pages promoting these albums.

      Unlike the motion picture and video game industries, the music industry has not made the PAL an age-based system. The industry asserts that the PAL does not necessarily indicate that a recording is inappropriate for any particular age group and, unlike movies and video games, consumers can purchase edited versions of most of the popular recordings that contain explicit content. The music industry also has left the decision to apply the PAL to individual studios and artists instead of an independent body, thereby creating the possibility of inconsistent application of the PAL to recordings with similar content. Moreover, the industry as a whole still does not provide consumers with specific information on product packaging and in advertising as to why a particular recording bears a PAL.

      On the positive side, Sony BMG continues to apply and advertise its enhanced Parental Advisory Label, which, in addition to the PALs general advisory about explicit content, lists the specific type of content that triggered application of the PAL; unfortunately, other industry members have not followed Sony BMG's lead. The Recording Industry Association of America (“RIAA”) has sought to limit access by consumers, including children, to peer-to-peer file-sharing sites that had provided almost unfettered access to recordings, including explicit recordings and other materials not appropriate for children. Finally, the industry has established legitimate and increasingly popular downloading sites that provide some indication that a recording has explicit content.

      Games

      As with the Commission's review of the other industries, internal marketing documents and ad placements for selected M-rated games showed that the video game companies contacted for this Report did not specifically target advertising for those games to children under 17. In addition, advertising on television programs popular with teens appears to be diminishing. The Commission found many examples, however, of Internet advertising that would appear to violate the industry's standard of not placing ads for M-rated games on websites with an under-17 audience of at least 45%. Sixteen of the twenty M-rated games selected by the Commission ran ads on sites that appear to equal or exceed the 45% standard. Moreover, that 45% standard, by definition, tolerates advertising on websites with very substantial under-17 audiences.

      Video game retailers substantially improved their enforcement of policies prohibiting children under 17 from purchasing M-rated games without parental permission. Forty-two percent of the children in the Commission's mystery shopper survey were able to purchase M-rated games, a statistically significant improvement from the 69% able to make the purchases in the 2003 survey.

      The ESRB continues to lead all three industries in providing clear and prominent disclosures of rating information in television, print, and online advertising. Still, the ESRB should enhance ratings disclosure by placing content descriptors on the front of game packaging.

      Consumer groups and legislators have raised concerns about the ESRB's process for rating video games. The ESRB's current system requires game publishers to identify pertinent content for rating purposes, creating the potential for relevant content to be overlooked in the review process. In addition, the ESRB's chosen method for assigning content descriptors may fail to reveal all of the content in a game that might be of interest to parents.

      The ESRB continues to sanction companies. The most recent available data indicate that the ESRB has cited companies for numerous infractions of the rating disclosure and ad placement rules, with several of these infractions resulting in fines.

      Mobile phone games are a growing segment of the video game market and pose several challenges for the industry's self-regulatory system. Mobile phone game developers often do not seek ESRB ratings; they do not sell their products through traditional retail channels, instead licensing their products directly to wireless carriers. As a likely consequence, relatively few mobile phone games have ESRB ratings. For those mobile games that are rated, the wide variation in capabilities for different mobile phone models may make it difficult to display rating information clearly and conspicuously on some phones. On the positive side, the trade group for the wireless telecommunications industry has crafted content guidelines based on existing rating or labeling systems for movies, television shows, music, and games. If adopted by a particular wireless carrier, the guidelines subject certain content to age-based restrictions. The Commission will continue to monitor self-regulatory developments in this nascent segment of the video game market.

      Parent-Child Survey

      The Commission's telephone survey of parents and children presents an overall positive picture of the video game rating system. Parental awareness and use of video game ratings are substantially higher than were reported in the Commission's 2000 survey. Nearly nine in ten parents are aware of the ESRB system, more than seven in ten use video game ratings when their child wants to play a game for the first time, and three quarters of parents familiar with content descriptors use them. Most parents report being involved with the purchase of video games for their children, and most review at least some of the game after its purchase.

      Almost two thirds of parents reported agreeing with ESRB ratings most or all the time; however, nearly one quarter only sometimes agree, and nearly one in ten rarely or never agree.

      Recommendations

      As in prior reports, the Commission offers suggestions for improvements by each of the industries. They are as follows:

      • The electronic game industry should tighten its existing advertising placement guidelines restricting advertising in venues where the under-17 audience reaches or exceeds 35% on television or 45% in print or online, and the movie and music industry should adopt similarly rigorous guidelines. These guidelines should include other criteria as well, such as the total number of children reached, whether the content is youth oriented, and the popularity with children and apparent ages of the characters or performers. For particular media, other factors—such as the time of day an ad airs on radio or television—also could be relevant.
      • The movie and electronic game industries should consider placing all of the rating information prominently on the front of product packaging to make that information more visible for parents at the point of purchase.
      • The music industry should consider providing more information on product packaging and in advertising as to why a particular recording has been labeled with a Parental Advisory, which would require industry members to more thoroughly review recordings for different types of explicit content.
      • The music industry should do a better job of displaying the Parental Advisory Label in television and online advertising.
      • Retailers should further implement and enforce point-of-sale policies restricting the sale of R-rated movie DVDs, explicit-content labeled music, and M-rated games to children.
      • The movie industry should examine whether the current methods of marketing and selling unrated or “Director's Cut” versions of R-rated movies undermines the self-regulatory system and undercuts efforts to provide accurate and useful rating information to consumers and to retailers trying to set store sales policies.
      • The ESRB should consider conducting targeted research into the reasons why a significant minority of parents believe the system could do a better job of informing them about the level of violence, sex, or profanity in some games. Based on this research, the ESRB should consider whether any changes to its rating process, criteria, or disclosure policies are warranted.

      Given important First Amendment considerations, the Commission supports private sector initiatives by industry and individual companies to implement these suggestions. The Commission will continue to monitor this area, particularly as emerging technologies change the way these products are marketed and sold. The Commission will also continue to work with industry and others to encourage efforts to provide parents with the information they need to decide which products are appropriate for their children. Following a reasonable period of monitoring industry practices and consumer concerns, the Commission will issue another report.

      I. Introduction
      A. Commission Reports on Marketing Violent Entertainment to Children

      This is the sixth Commission Report on the marketing to children of violent entertainment products by the motion picture, music recording, and electronic game industries. The Commission's initial report, released in September 2000 (“2000 Report”),1 examined the structure and operation of each industry's self-regulatory program, parental familiarity and use of those systems, and most importantly, whether the industries had marketed violent entertainment products in a manner inconsistent with their own parental advisories. The 2000 Report found that industry members routinely targeted children in their advertising and marketing of violent entertainment products, despite self-regulatory ratings or labels indicating the products might not be appropriate for children.2 It also found that children below the age of 17 could purchase these products relatively easily.3 The Commission concluded that such advertising and marketing efforts undermined each industry's parental advisories and frustrated parents' attempts to protect their children from possibly inappropriate material. It called upon the industries to strengthen their self-regulatory programs by: (1) prohibiting target marketing to children and imposing sanctions for violations; (2) improving self-regulatory programs at the retail level; and (3) increasing parental awareness of the ratings and labels.4

      In four smaller follow-up reports released in April 2001 (“April 2001 Report”),5 December 2001 (“December 2001 Report”),6 June 2002 (“2002 Report”),7 and July 2004 (“2004 Report”),8 the Commission described the adoption and implementation of new self-regulatory initiatives by the principal industry trade associations. The Commission found that although the movie and electronic game industries had made progress in limiting the marketing of R- and M-rated products to children, the music recording industry had not significantly changed its marketing practices since the 2000 Report. The Commission continued to urge the industries to strengthen their self-regulatory programs. In addition, the Commission has undertaken efforts to educate parents about the ratings systems and has made its toll-free consumer complaint line and its website complaint form available for media violence issues.

      In this Report, in addition to reporting on the marketing practices of each industry and efforts to restrict sales of R-rated movies, M-rated games, and recordings with a parental advisory label to those under 17, the Commission revisits issues concerning the structure and operation of each industry's self-regulatory program. Since the Commission's 2004 Report, the rating process and how parents use the systems have increasingly concerned consumer groups and legislators. In addition, in this Report, the Commission focuses on several new forms of marketing and distribution—such as viral and online marketing—being used to sell and distribute these products, approaches that were in their infancy when the Commission issued its 2000 Report.

      B. Sources of Information for this Report

      To prepare this Report, the Commission collected information from several sources. The Commission contacted the major trade and retailer groups for information on changes to their self-regulatory systems. The Commission also contacted several third-party groups seeking to change or advance alternatives to the current rating or labeling systems. The Commission reviewed internal marketing plans from nine industry members for certain R-rated movies, explicit-content labeled music recordings, and M-rated games released in the last year.9 As it had done for past follow-up reports, the Commission tracked advertising placements in media popular with youth, and reviewed advertisements to determine whether they included clear and prominent rating and labeling information. In addition, the Commission took an expansive look at various promotions and other activities on the Internet to assess how young teens and tweens were being marketed to online. To aid in this analysis, the Commission extracted information from the Nielsen//NetRatings' NetView and AdRelevance databases regarding paid Internet ad placements for selected products and the demographics of visitors to websites on which the ads appeared.

      As in previous reports, the Commission undertook an undercover shopper survey to determine whether progress has been made at retail locations in limiting the sale to children of products rated or labeled as potentially inappropriate for them. Finally, the Commission conducted an extensive telephone survey of parents and children, similar to a survey it conducted for the 2000 Report, to assess current consumer familiarity with and use of the video game rating system and parental views on the validity of video game ratings.

      II. Motion Pictures
      A. Comments on Current Rating System

      In 1968, the Motion Picture Association of America (“MPAA”) and the National Association of Theatre Owners (“NATO”) established a formalized, voluntary rating system for motion pictures released in theaters.10 The system is designed to provide warnings to be used as a guideline for parents, sometimes alerting them that they may need to learn more about a particular film before allowing their children to view the film.11 The Rating Board of the Classification and Ratings Administration (“CARA”), funded by fees charged to film producers or distributors, determines movie ratings for theatrical releases. According to the MPAA, each rater is a parent who has no affiliation with the entertainment industry outside his or her employment with CARA.12 By design, none of the raters has any particular expertise in child psychology or child development.13 Raters' main considerations include “the intensity of the themes in the motion picture, language, depictions of violence, nudity, sensuality, depictions of sexual activity and drug use.”14 After viewing each film, the Board decides on the rating by majority vote.15 Each film assigned a rating other than G also is assigned “rating reasons,” which are short phrases that explain why the film was assigned the particular rating category.16 Examples of rating reasons include “Rated R for terror, violence and language,” or “Rated PG-13 for intense sci-fi violence, some sexuality and brief nudity.” In February 2007, the MPAA and NATO announced that they will provide more detailed descriptions of the rating categories and the kind of content that triggers specific ratings; however, they have not yet implemented specific guidelines.17

      Parents continue to report a relatively high satisfaction level with the MPAA system.18 Nevertheless, the MPAA system has been criticized as lacking independence, being overly subjective and devoid of child development expertise, and not fulfilling the information requirements of parents and consumers.19 As to the latter criticism, some research has suggested that parents prefer (or at least find more useful) content-based ratings compared to age-based guidelines.20 Alternative rating systems have been developed to satisfy this perceived deficiency in the movie rating system. For example, PSVratings designed its ratings to be content-based, not age-based, in order to provide parents with comprehensive information about a movie's content so that they can decide what would be appropriate for their children to see.21 Other alternative systems, such as Parent Previews,22 Kids-in-Mind,23 and Screen It!24 similarly inform parents about movie content without setting specific age-based categories. Common Sense Media has developed a system with both age- and content-based elements.25

      The MPAA makes clear that its system is designed to inform and to alert parents that they may need to learn more about the particular film before allowing their children to view it. Accordingly, it views these alternative ratings as providing supplemental information. If parents are uncertain about the level of violence or other content in a film, MPAA directs them to other resources, such as the website for “Pause, Parent, Play,” a clearinghouse for alternative ratings information.26 This site links to movie rating information from Common Sense Media, MovieMom, and PSVratings.27

      Critics also assail the MPAA for perceived “ratings creep.” For example, one study claimed to have found evidence of “ratings creep” based on a study of all movie ratings released between 1992 and 2003.28 After combining movie content information derived from the Kids-in-Mind and Screen It! databases,29 researchers concluded that “the MPAA appears to tolerate increasingly more extreme content in any given age-based rating category over time,” finding increases in violence in films rated PG and PG-13, significant increases in sex in films rated PG, PG-13, and R, and significant increases in profanity in films rated PG-13 and R.30

      Some have argued that the level of violence in PG-13-rated movies, in particular, has increased over time, blurring the line between PG-13- and R-rated violent content.31 A 2004 study of the rating reasons assigned to PG-13 movies from 2000 through

      2002 concluded that rating reasons increasingly had described the violence as more “intense,” although sexual content had showed only a marginal increase.32 In recent years, PG-13 films have comprised the majority of top-grossing films for the industry.33 It has been argued that studios have a financial incentive to obtain a PG-13 rating, a rating that does not restrict admission to anyone but tolerates a substantial amount of violent content attractive to 12- to 17-year-olds.34

      B. Restrictions on Marketing to Children: Advertising Placement

      Six years ago, the MPAA implemented twelve initiatives35 in response to the Commission's September 2000 finding that the motion picture industry had engaged in extensive marketing of violent R-rated movies to children under 17.36 Each MPAA member studio promised to “review its marketing and advertising practices in order to further the goal of not inappropriately specifically targeting children in its advertising of films rated R for violence.”37 The Commission's four follow-up reports showed improvement in the studios' practices.

      For this Report, the Commission obtained the marketing plans from three studios for nine R-rated movies released in 2006 with at least one rating reason for violence. Review of the plans revealed little or no evidence that the studios explicitly targeted their advertising to children under age 17. Plans for all nine of the movies indicate that the target audience was at least 17 years old. In fact, one studio's marketing plans incorporate specific time period and demographic restrictions on television advertising with the goal of not inappropriately advertising movies with an anticipated R rating. An entire page of all three plans—captioned “2005–2006 FTC Update”—lists the restrictions by broadcast and cable channels, spot television, spot radio, and print advertising.38

      Nevertheless, some plans contained statements indicating that at least part of the target audience may have been younger than 17. For example, a marketing plan for an R-rated horror movie stated that the publicity campaign would target the “High School / college base” as one of the core audiences. The plan noted that the mainstream press's “focus chiefly on excessive sex and violence will only further pique the curiosity of target audiences.” Indeed, an exit poll of movie audiences showed that teens represented 39% of the audience.39 A marketing document for another R-rated movie from the same studio stated that one of the primary targets for the media campaign would be “High School students.”40 Although marketing R-rated movies to 17- and 18-year-old high school students is not inconsistent with the rating, a marketing plan that focuses on older high school students may pose a significant risk of also reaching a substantial number of students under age 17.

      1. Television ads

      After the Commission's release of the 2000 Report, several studios went beyond the MPAAs initiatives, announcing that they would not advertise R-rated movies in media with an under-17 audience of more than 35%.41 Although the MPAA has not formally incorporated the 35% standard into its advertising handbook, the handbook does specifically limit the placement of television spots depicting violent or adult content to “appropriate” programming, which is determined based on audience demographics for particular times, channels, and programs.42 Separately, the MPAA reports that its Advertising Administration43 requests that motion picture producers and distributors not advertise motion pictures “inappropriate” for children on programs that exceed a 15% to 20% audience share of children under the age of 17,44 and that film producers and distributors have consistently complied with these demographic standards.45 The studios do not deem all R-rated movies “inappropriate” for all children under the age of 17; rather, this restriction applies to a small subset of R-rated movies that are especially violent or feature a relatively high degree of adult content, compared to other R-rated movies as determined by the Advertising Administration.46

      Although studios appear to be complying, for the most part, with their self-imposed 35% standard (at least on advertisements placed on broadcast and syndicated stations), as the Commission has stated previously, the 35% standard has little impact on the studios' ability to place ads for R-rated films on television shows favored by teens, given that very few network and syndicated programs popular with teens have under-17 audiences greater than 35%.47 Data received from the Parents Television Council48 reveal numerous ad placements for R-rated movies on shows popular with young teens. For example, in 2006, ads for Doom (DVD), Hostel (DVD), Underworld Evolution, The Hills Have Eyes, Final Destination 3, Vfor Vendetta, Silent Hill, and Munich appeared on Fox's Family Guy, and ads for The Ice Harvest, Final Destination 3, and The Hills Have Eyes appeared on Fox's American Dad, shows in which children 2 to 17 make up about 25% of the audience.49

      Moreover, data received from Nielsen show similar ad placements for R-rated movies and R-rated and unrated movie DVDs—including Inside Man, Slither, Waist Deep, an unrated DVD version of the R-rated Crash, and the Hostel DVD—on popular music video shows on BET, MTV, and MTV 2, including 106th & Park, Rap City, Top 25 Countdown, Total Request Live, and Pimp My Ride, shows in which children 2 to 17 make up between 42% and 49% of viewers. These ad placements likely would violate the studios' own standard of no more than 35% under 17.

      There are also questions about some ad placements for PG-13 movies. In 2006, the Children's Advertising Review Unit (“CARU”) of the Council of Better Business Bureaus challenged several major film studios for running ads for PG-13 movies on children's programming.50 These included ads for the theatrical release of Warner Brothers's Superman Returns that appeared on the Cartoon Network; Sony Pictures' Click that ran on the Cartoon Network, and during Nickelodeon's Drake & Josh, Fairly Odd Parents, and Just for Kicks; Warner Brothers's Harry Potter—Goblet of Fire that ran during ABC's Saturday morning children's programming; Buena Vista's Pirates of the Caribbean—Dead Mans Chest, that ran on Nickelodeon during children's programming; and Sony Pictures's Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby that ran on Nickelodeon and the Cartoon Network. CARU also questioned ads for Lionsgate Entertainment's Ultimate Avenger DVD that ran on the Fox Network's 4 Kids TV block on Saturday morning.

      Except for Lionsgate, each of the advertisers contended that its advertising complied with the CARU guidelines, but declined to appeal CARU's action because the ad campaigns had ended. Lionsgate stated it would take CARU's guidelines into account in reviewing placement of advertising for its PG-13 animated movie titles.

      2. Print ads

      In the 2000 Report, the Commission found that studios placed advertisements for violent R-rated films in publications that appealed to teens. The Commission's subsequent reviews showed that the studios have limited these placements. For this Report, the Commission reviewed teen-oriented publications from 2005 and 2006 and found no advertisements for R-rated films in these publications. However, consistent with the 2004 Report, a small number of ads for R-rated films on DVD continued to be placed in magazines popular with teens.51

      3. New media and marketing methods
      A. Internet marketing

      The studios' television advertising expenditures have decreased since 2001, while their expenditures for online advertising have doubled.52 The Commission examined the paid Internet advertising placements for twenty movies released in 2006 with an R-rating and at least one violence-related rating reason.53 According to data obtained from Nielsen//NetRatings, eighteen of the twenty movies were advertised on websites where under-17 visitors constitute one third or more of the audience. These sites include atom FILMS, Cartoon Network, Cheat Code Central, eBaum's World, GameFAQs, GameSpot, GameSpy, Game Winners, IGN, http://MTV.com, Newgrounds, nickjr, Runescape, and http://Ultimate-Guitar.com. Three of these sites have an under-17 audience composition greater than 50%, and four others have an under-17 audience composition greater than 40%.54

      B. Viral marketing

      Viral marketing is a catch-phrase for a variety of promotional strategies used to encourage consumers to talk to one another about a particular product. Leveraging the ubiquity of the Internet and the popularity of online social networks such as MySpace and Xanga, companies can promote their products through large-scale word-of-mouth marketing. In the context of its July 2006 study of online food marketing to children, the Kaiser Family Foundation noted research showing that peers can be an important source of influence in purchase decisions. Peer influence can dovetail with viral marketing that encourages children to talk to one another about a company's products.55 Given these developments, the Commission examined online viral marketing practices for three entertainment industry members.

      Some viral marketing may take place on websites containing user-generated content, such as YouTube. To the extent this content is created and posted by private individuals, it is unlikely to be covered by industry rating or labeling systems. Therefore, parents concerned about this content may need to exercise greater oversight of their children's access to these websites.56

      Banner ads for at least ten of the twenty movies appeared on MySpace, an extremely popular social networking site.57 More than one third of all 2- to 16-year-olds with home Internet access visited MySpace between July and September 2006.58 Moreover, data suggest that younger users are more engaged with the content of the site compared to older age groups. Although 2- to 16-year-olds represented slightly less than one quarter (24%) of MySpace visitors during the relevant time-frame, they accounted for over 40% of all web page views for the site.59

      The studios did not limit their promotion of R-rated movies on MySpace to paid banner ads. Of twenty official movie sites that the Commission examined for rating disclosure practices,60 nine61 also had profiles pages on MySpace that were similar to the official sites for the films.62 These sites featured not only the trailer, but also options to add the trailer to one's own profile page, add movie-related graphics as a background to one's profile page, download “buddy icons,”63 play music from the soundtrack, participate in a message forum, view other clips from the movie, add the movie to one's network of friends, and forward the movie profile page to friends.64 Few of the movies' MySpace pages displayed rating information.65

      Even if the movies lacked a MySpace profile page, most of the twenty official websites the Commission examined had viral marketing elements akin to what might be available on MySpace, such as the ability to email the website to a friend, send a video e-card to a friend, participate in message boards, download “buddy icons” to be pasted into instant messages, install video clips and sound bites on one's own website, and add one's website to the movie's web ring.

      C. Disclosure of Ratings and Reasons for Ratings in Ads

      Since its 2000 Report, the Commission has noted the studios' steady progress in disclosing ratings and rating reasons clearly and prominently in advertising.66 Among the specific requirements implemented by the MPAA in this regard is the inclusion of rating reasons for all films (other than those rated G) in newspaper ads above a certain size, websites, posters, and billboards (but not television or radio spots).67 Recently, the MPAA introduced its “Red Carpet Rating Service,” which allows parents to sign up to receive weekly emails that show upcoming movie releases, their ratings, and rating reasons.68 The MPAA also provides weekly reports of the ratings and rating reasons of newly rated movies to Blockbuster and the Internet Movie Database (http://imdb.com).69 In addition, NATO has pledged to seek ways to encourage local newspapers to include the rating and rating reasons in their movie reviews.70

      For this Report, the Commission reviewed studio documents and conducted its own monitoring of studio and retailer advertisements in various media. For television ads,71 print ads,72 and studio websites, the Commission found near universal display of legible ratings and less frequent and somewhat legible display of rating reasons. Several television ads included both a visual and oral presentation of the rating, e.g., “Rated PG-13.” For some television and newspaper ads, as in past reports, it was difficult to see or read the rating reasons displayed along with the rating, usually because of the small size of the disclosure. In some instances, television ads did not display any rating reasons. Further information on the display of ratings on studio websites is found in Addendum D to this Report, § LA, Table 1.

      The Commission found that all theater and movie ticket websites displayed ratings and rating reasons. (Addendum D, § LB, Tables 2 & 3.) Online sellers and renters of DVDs also displayed the ratings consistently, but a majority did not display the rating reasons. (Addendum D, § I.C, Table 4, & § I.D, Table 6.) In addition, the Commission briefly reviewed the websites of four movie studios that are selling R-rated movies directly from their sites, finding that three out of the four displayed both ratings and rating reasons for such movies; three out of four sites also were selling unrated versions of R-rated movies.73

      For the first time, the Commission reviewed the practices of five online movie retailers' sites to assess their rating information practices with respect to violent unrated movies that also have an MPAA R-rated version.74 The sites used terms like “NR,”“Not Rated,” or “Unrated” to indicate that the movies were unrated.75 Most of the sites used phrases like “Director's Cut” to indicate why the films were unrated. A majority also contained some other warning or cautionary statements relating to the content of the movie, such as “Violence” or “Not For Children.” Even though the majority of websites indicated that the unrated movie also had a rated version, many of the sites did not present this information in a clear and conspicuous manner.76 (Addendum D, § I.C, Table 5.)

      D. Industry Efforts to Enforce Rating System in Theaters and at Point-of-Sale
      1. Box office enforcement of the rating system

      In three previous reports, the Commission reported on the results of nationwide undercover studies of the extent to which unaccompanied children under 17 were able to purchase movie theater tickets to R-rated films. In these shops, a contractor uses children ages 13 to 16 as shoppers, who, unaccompanied by a parent, attempt to purchase movie tickets, movies on DVD, music recordings, and electronic games at theaters and stores across the country. In the Commission's first two surveys, about half of the mystery shoppers were able to buy tickets.77 Following increased efforts by NATO to improve theater owner enforcement of the rating system, the Commission's 2003 survey found a substantial improvement: 36% of the mystery shoppers were able to buy tickets.78

      For this Report, the Commission conducted a fourth undercover survey in Lune and Luly 2006.79 The results of this survey were roughly the same as in 2003: 39% of the “mystery shoppers” were able to buy tickets to R-rated films, a difference that is not statistically significant from the 2003 results.80

      2. Home video retailers and online sellers

      The Commission obtained information directly from a number of DVD/home video retailers regarding their policies, if any, governing the sale of R-rated and unrated movies to children under 17.81 A few major retailers indicated that they do have such policies. Some require clerks or cashiers to check the identification of anyone who appears to be under 17 seeking to purchase an R-rated movie, and use a cash register prompt that reminds the clerk to perform an ID check when a restricted product is scanned for purchase.

      For the Commission's 2004 Report, 81% of underage shoppers who visited retailers selling R-rated movie DVDs were able to purchase those products. In the Commission's 2006 survey, 71% of the teen shoppers were able to purchase the product, a statistically significant yet modest reduction.

      The Commission also conducted 101 shops for so-called Director's Cut or unrated DVDs for movies that were rated R when they were first released in theaters. The Entertainment Merchants Association (“EMA”), a trade group representing DVD retailers, has reported that, of all R-rated films with both a rated and an unrated version released on DVD since 2002, on average 64% of unit sales are for the unrated version.82 In that shop, 71% of shoppers were able to buy the unrated DVD—results identical to the R-rated movie DVD shop. This result is particularly troubling because unrated DVDs may contain footage that would have resulted in CARA assigning an NC-17 rating.

      The EMA points out that it can be difficult for retailers to set a policy for unrated DVDs because many do not necessarily contain restricted or adult content.83 Unrated DVDs maybe based on movies that had been originally rated PG-13 or less. Others may simply never have been rated. To eliminate this problem, CARA would have to rate unrated movies that are released for retail sale. Stores could then rely on the actual rating for the product when setting sales policies, and theater owners would not be enforcing a system that turns children away at the box office only to have them obtain even more explicit content simply by purchasing an unrated DVD. Moreover, NATO has expressed concern over the practice of some studios building marketing campaigns around the very fact that the DVD is “unrated” or “unrated and uncensored.”84 As NATO has stated, “The intended implication is obvious, troubling, and venal: the rating system is tantamount to censorship, and see how easy it is to evade that system of censorship. Such a practice breeds cynicism about the rating system [and] complicates [theater owners'] task of promoting strict adherence to the letter and spirit of the rating system….”85

      As discussed in Addendum D, § I.C, the Commission surveyed five online movie retailers' sites to determine their rating information practices for five movies rated R for violence, as well for five violent unrated movies that also have an MPAA R-rated version. All five of the sites required a form of payment, such as a credit card, to which many children may not have access. Consistently, the EMA reports that most retailers rely on the use of a credit card or debit card as a proxy for parental authorization for online purchases of R-rated DVDs by persons under age 17, noting that Visa and MasterCard will not issue cards to minors unless an adult co-signs the card.86 EMA also reports that it is investigating the feasibility of retailers using third-party online age-verification services, which check a credit card user's name against government databases.87

      3. DVD vending kiosks

      According to the EMA, up to 2,500 self-service kiosks, located in fast-food restaurants and grocery stores, rent or sell DVDs. Redbox Automated Retail, LLC (operating under the redbox brand) and TNR Entertainment Corp. (The New Release) currently are the largest kiosk operators in the United States.88 DVD kiosks can hold anywhere from 500 to 1,000 DVDs; charge relatively small, per-night rental fees; and are easily operated with a touch-screen and a credit card.89 The Redbox website now allows consumers to use its website to rent a DVD from a particular kiosk for later pickup.90

      At the time of the Commission's review, both the Redbox website and its kiosk touch-screen displayed the rating for R-rated movies with a small gray box containing the letter “R”; the kiosks also displayed the movie's box art, but the box art either lacked rating information or the information was illegible. Although Redbox did not provide rating reasons for movies online or at a kiosk, to effectuate the rental, consumers must click a box stating, “I confirm that I am at least 18 years of age and understand that the movie I have selected is rated” R “and most likely contains scenes with violence, nudity, graphic language or all three, that are unsuitable for children.”91 Redbox relies on this confirmation and the user's possession of a credit or debit card in his or her name to verify age.92

      On the TNR kiosk, once a particular R-rated movie is selected, the touch screen displayed the movie's front box art and provided a description of the movie that includes a statement that the movie was rated R. Also, a sidebar under the box art states, among other things, “Not Under: 17 Years Old.” The TNR kiosk did not provide rating reasons for any of the movies or any other advisory about the content of the movies available for rent. The TNR kiosk the Commission visited also offered at least one unrated DVD of a movie that had an R-rated, theatrical version (Hostel). The movie description indicated that it was unrated, but the sidebar regarding age appropriateness was blank. A credit card was necessary to rent movies from the TNR kiosk.

      E. Analysis of Current Industry Practices

      The MPAA should evaluate third-party criticisms regarding the need to clarify its standards to better distinguish the level of violence in PG-13 movies compared to R-rated movies. On the marketing side, the industry continues to advertise R-rated movies on television shows popular with children under age 17. Indeed, some advertising placements violate the 35% standard adopted by several studios. Similarly, the industry continues to advertise R-rated movies on websites very popular with teens, including the social networking site MySpace. The industry's performance appears to be much better regarding ratings disclosures in television and print advertising, and on studio websites (but not for profile pages established on MySpace). DVD retailers, however, still do not display rating reasons most of the time, and neither of the two major DVD kiosks display rating reasons at this time.

      As to rating enforcement, the Commission's mystery shopper survey showed that theaters' performance remains at the same level as three years ago. About four in ten underage children still were able to gain admission, unaccompanied, to R-rated films. Retailers who sell R-rated DVDs performed better than in 2003, but were still sub-par: seven in ten shoppers under age 17 were able to purchase these movies. Likewise, seven in ten underage shoppers were able to buy unrated DVDs of movies that have R-rated versions. Given that many of these unrated “Director's Cuts” contain content that, if rated with the movie, might lead an NC-17 rating, MPAA, NATO, and the major retailers should work together to address this potential problem.

      III. Music Recordings
      A. Comments on the Current Rating System

      In 1985, the Recording Industry Association of America (“RIAA”) created the parental advisory program in response to concerns of parent groups about children's exposure to music with mature themes.93 The RIAA describes the Parental Advisory Label (“PAL”) as a tool for record companies to use to alert parents to explicit lyrics, and to provide notice to consumers that these recordings may contain strong language or references to violence, sex, or substance abuse, and caution that “parental discretion is advised.”94 RIAA members, as well as non-member companies, routinely use the PAL.

      The PAL is black and white and says “Parental Advisory, Explicit Content.”

      The RIAA requires that the label be displayed, “clearly and conspicuously,” in a “legible, non-removable form” on the product's cover artwork (and not the wrapper, jewel case, removable sticker, or cellophane covering).95 The RIAA encourages, but does not require, that the label be 1 “× 5/8”, and be placed on the bottom left or right corner of the product's cover.96

      Unlike the film and electronic game self-regulatory systems, the recording industry has not set up a rating board to determine whether a music recording should display the PAL. Instead, each company reviews and labels its own recordings, following general guidance set out by the RIAA for determining whether a recording should be stickered.97

      In its first Report, the Commission noted that this decision to label is subjective and is made on a case-by-case basis.98 As one company then reported to the Commission, its employees, often in partnership with the artists involved, make “good faith judgments about what kinds of lyrics and depictions parents might find offensive, because of racial epithets, vulgarities, curse words, sexual references, violence, and drug descriptions.” As another company put it, “the ultimate judgment call of whether the content of a recording warrants the [PAL] is made in light of the message and identity of the artist, the current social climate, and, perhaps most importantly, straightforward common sense.” Companies may decide to label a recording as soon as they hear a number of expletives in one song, without listening to an album's entire content.99

      Also, unlike the rating systems set up for movies and video games, the PAL is not age-based. As noted above, the music industry resists any suggestion that the presence of the PAL is an indication that the recording is not appropriate for any particular age group. Although the Commission has consistently encouraged the music recording industry to consider a change in this view,100 the industry has declined, asserting that the PAL program is significantly different from the programs applied by other industries. One key difference, according to the RIAA, is that the music recording industry routinely releases edited versions of its most popular products.101 The RIAA points out that 93% (42 out of 45) of the explicit-content labeled recordings on the 2005 year-end Billboard 200 were also available in an edited version.102 In addition, as the RIAA points out, the PAL is meant as a signal to parents of the presence of any type of content—language, sex, substance abuse, or violence—that they may find unsuitable for their children.

      Another issue regarding the labeling system is that the decision whether to label a product rests solely with the recording studio or artist. Unlike other self-regulatory programs, where a rating decision is made by a ratings board or other administrative body that is at least somewhat independent of any particular company, each artist or recording company evaluates its own product. As noted above, this process can lead to situations where a label might be applied by one recording company or artist but not by another for similar content. The RIAA has previously claimed that any other system would prove unworkable, because tens of thousands of recordings are released each year.

      A third concern, raised in previous Commission reports, is the absence of specific information as to why a particular recording is labeled. Unlike the movie industry's rating reasons, or the video game industry's content descriptors, no specific reasons or additional guidance on content are given. In past reports, the Commission has recommended that the music industry go beyond the RIAA's requirement and provide more specific information on product packaging and in advertising about the nature of the explicit content in a music recording.103 Although industry members would have to conduct a more thorough review of recordings than the PAL system currently requires, Sony BMG's practice of providing an enhanced label demonstrates the feasibility of an industry-wide rule that would enable parents and children to make better informed purchase decisions. The FTC continues to recommend Sony BMG's approach as a model for other industry members.

      B. Restrictions on Marketing to Children: Advertising Placement

      Because the RIAA's Parental Advisory Program Guidelines are not age-based,104 they do not prohibit companies from placing advertising for explicit-content labeled recordings in media popular with children. Not surprisingly, therefore, in past reports the Commission has noted instances when recordings with a parental advisory were advertised on television shows and in print magazines popular with teens. The Commission has noted that such marketing appears to be inconsistent with a label that cautions parents about some material in the recording.105 For this Report, in addition to reviewing ad placements in 2006 on popular teen shows, the Commission also requested that three music recording companies provide marketing plans for nine explicit-content labeled recordings.

      1. Television ads

      The Commission's review of Nielsen data revealed numerous placements of ads for recordings with a PAL on music shows on BET, MTV, and MTV2, including 106th & Park, Rap City, and Total Request Live. Each of these shows is viewed by a large percentage of children and young teens, ranging from 42% to 49% under 18. Similar placements, if done to promote R-rated movies or M-rated video games, would violate the 35% standard used by those industries. Nonetheless, recording companies routinely advertise on these shows. The Commission also found ads on Nick at Nite's Full House and Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, shows widely watched by even larger percentages of teens.

      The recording industry's frequent use of these media is consistent with the marketing plans reviewed by the Commission, which also show plans to place ads on these networks. None of these placements violates any music industry guidelines, because, as noted above, the industry has not adopted any marketing guidelines.106

      2. Print Ads

      In past reports, the Commission has noted numerous instances when ads for recordings with a parental advisory have appeared in magazines popular with young teens, although in the Commission's 2004 Report, it noted that such ads were appearing with less frequency. That positive trend continued for this Report. At various times in 2005 and 2006, the Commission conducted a review of advertisements in magazines popular with teens. Only three advertisements for explicit-content labeled albums appeared in the issues of the popular teen magazines reviewed. All three ads were placed in Thrasher magazine.107 These results are consistent with the 2004 Report, which reported only six total ads for stickered albums in teen-oriented publications.

      3. New Media and Marketing Methods
      a. Internet Marketing

      The Commission examined the Internet advertising placements for twenty music albums released in 2006 and bearing a PAL.108 This review showed that at least thirteen of the twenty albums were advertised on sites with substantial audiences under age 17, including AddictingGames, ARTISTdirect, Bolt, eBaum's World, eCRUSH, GameFAQs, GameSpot, Newgrounds, Runescape, Ultimate-Guitar, and SparkNotes.109 In addition, marketing documents obtained from three recording companies indicated that Internet marketing was not limited to traditional paid advertising: recording companies often provided third-party websites with audio or video clips or other information about the artist or album and encouraged the sites to post this content. Some of these targeted websites have substantial teen audiences, such as Ultimate-Guitar, Bolt, ARTISTdirect, IGN, and MTV. The plan for one album stated “Target teen sites” as part of its online publicity campaign.

      b. Viral Marketing

      Of the twenty music albums examined for paid Internet advertising placements, six were advertised on one of two social networking websites popular with children, MySpace and Xanga. Further, all of these albums were separately promoted on MySpace through artist profile pages containing the same viral marketing elements that appeared on the motion picture profile pages discussed above;110 several marketing plans touted the number of “friends” affiliated with the MySpace page and the number of songs streamed from the page.111 The Commission's review of twenty official music album websites112 revealed that all of the artists had MySpace profile pages promoting the albums.113 The official websites for most of the music albums examined by the Commission also contained viral marketing elements, such as the ability to share the website with, or send an e-card to, a friend; sign up to receive emails about contests and other promotions; participate in message boards and online chats; paste buddy icons of the artists into instant messages; and join the band's “street team” to help promote the album.

      Several recording company marketing plans obtained for this Report elaborated on their viral marketing strategies. One plan reported that the company had uploaded a video from the album to over ten viral video sites, including YouTube, Rewer, and Google Video. Another plan for the same album stated that the artist's “online campaign will begin with community building at such powerful web-hubs as MySpace, PureVolume and YouTube, in conjunction with our street team, e-team, and other grassroots music partners.” (PureVolume has a substantial audience under the age of 17,114 and, as previously noted, so does MySpace.) The plan further indicated that the “Street and E Teamers” would be directed by email to post ecards for the band “all over MySpace” as well as other message boards and fan sites.115

      A marketing document for another album touted the fact that the band's profile page was the top page on the MySpace Artist page during one particular month, with over 4.7 million total views. The marketing plan also detailed several community-building elements contained on the band's official website, such as a “backstage area” where fans could access uploaded video content, a “gallery” in which fans could have their photos posted on the website, a journal, and a “polling area” where fans could vote on the fan of the week.116 Another marketing document for the same album referred to an online fan “Army” named after the band. Fans would sign in and become members of the army by “sending the most on-line banners to friends, signing the most NEW members up to My Space, going to the most shows, etc….”

      C. Disclosure of Advisory Labels and Reasons for Labels in Ads

      The RIAA's guidelines regarding PAL notices in consumer advertisements require print, radio, mobile, online, and television advertising for explicit-content recordings to “communicate the presence of PAL content” in the sound recording as well as the availability of an edited version, if such version exists.117

      As the Commission has noted in each of its reports, the PAL does not provide the reasons for the advisory. Although the Commission has recommended that the Parental Advisory include reasons for the PAL, only one of the major recording companies, Sony & BMG Music Entertainment (“Sony BMG”), uses an “enhanced” advisory label on its explicit-content labeled recordings. This enhanced label indicates whether the recording has been stickered because of “Strong Language,” “Sexual Content,” “Violent Content,” or “Sexual + Violent Content.”118 Other recording companies have not followed Sony BMG's lead.

      The recording industry's performance on disclosing rating information is mixed. Four of the eleven television ads the Commission reviewed contained a parental advisory, and, even in those instances, just one parental advisory was prominently depicted. On the other hand, industry members continue to show improvement in placing the PAL logo in print advertising for stickered recordings. Most of the print ads for explicit-content recordings reviewed by the Commission contained clear and conspicuous PAL logos.119 Additionally, Sony BMG continues to place descriptors, such as “Strong Language,” along with the required PAL logo in advertisements for explicit-content recordings. In retailer ads, by contrast, the PAL logo was less conspicuous and smaller.

      As with the 2004 Report, despite the extension of the RIAA guidelines to include the online distribution and promotion of explicit-content labeled recordings on the Internet, the recording industry's performance in this area showed little, if any, improvement. Fifty-five percent (11 of 20) of the official artist and record company websites reviewed by the Commission120 displayed the PAL logo, compared to 60% in the 2004 Report.121 On only six of the eleven sites was the PAL logo legible. Ninety percent (18 of 20) of the websites examined offered the opportunity to purchase the explicit-content labeled recording, either from an official recording company website or through a link to a third-party online retailer. The PAL logo or other advisory language about the explicit content of the recording was visible at some time during the search or purchase process on about 89% (16 of 18) of the websites, an improvement from 2004.122 (See Addendum D, § ILA, Table 1.)

      All of the artists had a MySpace page promoting their music albums either by providing album information or the ability to view a video or download a track from the album. Only 35% (7 of 20) of these pages displayed the album's PAL anywhere on the page, and in those instances, the PAL was very difficult to read.

      All of the five music retailer websites reviewed indicated, either through a PAL logo or by other language, that the albums surveyed had explicit content.123 In many of these cases, the PAL logo was difficult to read.124 Nearly two thirds of the time (in 15 of 25 instances), the visitor, regardless of age, could play audio or video clips from the explicit album. Only one of the websites provided any detailed information about the PAL system.125 (See Addendum D, § II.B, Table 2.)

      In reviewing five music download websites (iTunes, MusicMatch, Napster, RealNetworks' RealOne Rhapsody, and AOL Music), all generally displayed the music track's PAL logo somewhere on their websites, although the logo was readable on only two of those sites.126 Two of the five websites (iTunes and Music Match) offered some kind of parental controls to limit children's access to explicit content. (See Addendum D, § II.C, Table 3.)

      D. Industry Efforts to Enforce the Rating System at Point-of-Sale

      In the 2006 mystery shop, shoppers (unaccompanied teens, ages 13 to 16) made 249 attempts to purchase a music recording with a PAL logo at various retail locations across the country. In the 2003 survey, the Commission had found that 83% of these teens were able to buy an explicit recording.127 The latest shop found some slight improvement, with 76% of shoppers able to make a purchase. Although this change was statistically significant, and demonstrates some progress, the numbers are still high.

      Several retailers contacted by the Commission say that they do not have any formal policy on selling music with a Parental Advisory to children. Others do. One retailer, for example, indicated it will only sell such recordings to a child who is at least 13. Two others said they require that buyers be at least 17. Wal-Mart continues its policy of not stocking music recordings with a Parental Advisory; it sells only edited versions of those recordings.

      E. Analysis of Current Industry Practices

      Industry products and most print and some television ads reviewed by the Commission continue to disclose the existence of explicit content in a recording, although, with the exception of Sony BMG's enhanced PAL, advertisements provide only general nd very limited information about the nature of that content. In addition, the RIAA has sought to limit access by consumers, including children, to peer-to-peer file-sharing sites that had provided almost unfettered access to recordings, including explicit recordings and other materials not appropriate for children. Finally, industry has established legitimate and increasingly popular downloading sites that provide at least some indication that a recording has explicit content.

      Nonetheless, the absence of any restrictions on the marketing of explicit-content recordings to children results in widespread exposure of children and young teens to advertising that promotes albums and recordings with an explicit-content label. Commission review of television and Internet advertising confirms the widespread marketing of such products on venues widely seen or viewed by those under 17. Moreover, few retailers appear to have in place effective policies to prevent children from buying these products.

      The music recording industry maintains that the Parental Advisory is not meant to indicate that a sound recording is either appropriate or inappropriate for any particular age group. The industry notes that it provides edited versions of many of its most popular recordings bearing a Parental Advisory, which parents can use as a tool to restrict their children's exposure to certain content. Nonetheless, sales of edited versions represent only a small portion of overall sales. Even short of setting age limits, the industry could do more to lessen children's exposure to ads for recordings with a Parental Advisory.

      IV. Electronic Games
      A. Comments on Current Rating System

      In 1994, the electronic game industry established the Entertainment Software Rating Board (“ESRB”) to rate electronic games.

      The rating system combines age-based rating icons [“EC” (Early Childhood—may be suitable for age 3 and above), “E” (Everyone 6 and above), “E-10+” (Everyone 10 and above), “T” (Teen—13 and above), “M” (Mature—17 and above), and “AO” (Adults Only—onlyfor 18 and above)], usually with one or more content descriptors, including violence, sexual content, language, use of controlled substances, and gambling, that highlight content in the game that maybe of interest or concern to parents.128 Overall, the vast majority of games are rated E, with approximately 32% of games rated either T (24%) or M (8%). AO-rated games constitute less than 0.02% of games rated. Despite their relatively small percentage in terms of number of games rated, M-rated games, in any given year, account for 15% or more of video game sales.129

      The ESRB's advertising guidelines130 (“Ad Code”) require game companies to include this rating information on product packaging and in game advertising. The system has evolved over the years to respond to new developments and concerns regarding electronic games. In March 2005, for example, the ESRB added an new rating category—E10+—to identify those games with content that might be more suitable for older children.131

      To obtain a game rating from the ESRB, companies must submit a ratings application answering questions about game content and describing scenes in the game that, for example, depict violence, use offensive language, show the use of drugs, alcohol, or tobacco, or contain sexual or suggestive content. In addition, they must provide footage of the game (generally no longer than forty-five minutes) showing the most extreme content of the game in each of those areas. Working independently, three raters then view the game footage (but not the questionnaire) and recommend the rating and content descriptors they believe are most appropriate.132 According to the ESRB website, additional raters maybe used if needed to achieve a consensus on a rating and content descriptors. Once a consensus is reached, the ESRB then issues an official rating certificate to the game's publisher.133

      Concurrent with the rating submission, companies may also apply for a Rating Pending (“RP”) rating. The RP icon must appear in advertising for the game and may appear on packaging produced for marketing or promotional purposes only.134 Companies are free to promote and accept orders for games that the ESRB has not yet rated. Therefore, consumers can order a game to which the ESRB might ultimately assign a more restrictive rating than consumers had anticipated.135

      Within fifteen days after release of the game, a game company is required to submit game packaging and a final version of the game to the ESRB. The ESRB checks the game packaging to see if the rating information is properly displayed136 and may play the final game to verify that all the information provided during the rating process was accurate and complete.137

      Some have criticized the ESRB for not playing through each game before issuing a rating. As noted above, raters see excerpts from the game, selected by the game publishers, meant to reveal the most extreme content in the game. Because of this practice, raters may not see the full extent of some content in a game.138 On the other hand, the ESRB has significantly enhanced its fines for any company that fails to disclose fully all pertinent content on a game disc that may be relevant to a rating when seeking an ESRB rating.139

      The ESRB's practice of not reviewing the entire game before assigning a rating may also contribute to the discrepancy in content descriptors observed in some studies. In a series of published studies, Professor Kimberly Thompson of the Harvard School of Public Health has questioned why several E-, T-, and M-rated games were not assigned more descriptors, especially those indicating that the game contains scenes depicting drug or alcohol use, which her research found in playing through portions of the games.140 In her content analyses, 44% of E-rated games had no content descriptors for violence yet contained acts of violence in more than one third of the game.141 Furthermore, according to Professor Thompson, the ESRB had not assigned applicable content descriptors for many T-rated games that contained blood or depicted the use of alcohol, tobacco, or illicit drugs; nor had the ESRB assigned descriptors for many M-rated games that contained sexual themes, profanity, and the depiction of substance use.

      The ESRB has rejected most of Professor Thompson's criticisms, noting that she appeared to be using a different methodology in assessing the need for a descriptor.142 In addition, the ESRB asserts that content descriptors “are meant to reflect what a parent might be most concerned about when considering the purchase of a game” and “are not assigned as a comprehensive list of observable content.”143 Rather, they are there to indicate elements in a game “that may have triggered a rating and/or maybe of interest or concern to a consumer.”144 Thus, according to the ESRB, in an M-rated game that has descriptors for intense violence and sexual themes, the ESRB might not assign a descriptor for use of tobacco, even if its use was depicted in the game, because consumers are already on notice of the mature content in the game.145

      The ESRB asserts that reviewing the entire content of games would likely necessitate a change in who does the review, and lengthen the review process. Given the length of games (up to fifty to one hundred hours) and the sophistication and skill needed to play a game through all levels, the ESRB claims it would have to use expert gamers to rate the game, as opposed to the representatives of the general public and of parents they use now. According to the ESRB, using gamers to rate games “would likely bias rating assignments as they would surely bring a different sensibility to content than the pool of raters [it has] always used.”146 In addition, it would change the practice of game publishers, which typically submit games for rating prior to their completion.

      Critics also have argued that children have too easy access to M-rated games.147 For example, in 2005 the National Institute on Media and the Family surveyed over 600 4th through 12th grade students and found that seven often children report playing M-rated games, with 61 % of children reporting that they own their own M-rated games. In addition, 60% of children list at least one M-rated game as their favorite (75% of boys and 35% of girls).148

      Finally, some consumer groups question whether the ESRB is truly independent of the gaming industry given that its board and funding come from industry sources.149 They believe this may contribute to raters assigning less restrictive ratings than warranted based on the game's content because of economic pressures by industry members, particularly in the area of M-rated games. Specifically, because most major retailers will not stock AO-rated games, some consumer groups believe raters are pressured into assigning an M rating to games with an increasing amount of violence. The ESRB counters that this concern instead leads to industry members who seek to avoid the AO rating to delete scenes that would otherwise result in that rating either before submitting the game, or during the rating process.150

      B. Restrictions on Marketing to Children: Ad Placement

      In response to findings in the Commission's 2000 Report that industry members frequently marketed M-rated electronic games to children under 17151—a practice that violated the anti-targeting provision of the game industry's Ad Code—the electronic game industry amended its anti-targeting provision to add specific standards defining targeting. Under those provisions, ads for M-rated games cannot appear on TV and radio programs with a 35% or more under-17 audience, or in print media or on Internet sites with a 45% or more under-17 audience.152 In 2005, the ESRB created a “safe harbor” modification to its anti-targeting guidelines that allows companies to advertise M-rated games in programs telecast between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. on a local time-zone basis, regardless of the audience composition.153

      Since the Commission's last report, the ESRB has added specific requirements regarding the marketing of T-rated games. Although the guidance does not provide a cutoff for the permissible composition of the under-13 audience, it does indicate that the ESRB will look at a variety of factors in determining whether an ad for a Teen game is being appropriately marketed, including the content in the game and the audience composition or median age of the medium in which the ad appeared.154 This guidance is somewhat consistent with the Commission's recommendation in the 2000 Report that industry consider a variety of factors, not solely the percentage of the audience, to avoid advertising in venues popular with the restricted age demographic.

      In addition, the ESRB continues to enforce its Ad Code and to assess points, fines, and sanctions for violations of the code's provisions. From luly 2005 through lune 2006, the ESRB issued over 100 citations for non-compliance with ESRB rules, more than 80% of which were technical in nature,155 and in several instances fined companies for violations.156 As noted, the ESRB has significantly enhanced its fines for any company that fails to disclose fully all pertinent content to the ESRB when seeking a rating.

      1. Television ads

      The Commission's review of advertising on popular teen shows and of selected marketing plans did not find any examples of companies placing or planning to place ads for M-rated games on shows that likely would violate the ESRB's 35% standard. It is clear, however, that the ESRB's 35% threshold does little to limit the exposure of children under 17 to such ads. Of the top one hundred shows watched by teens on broadcast and in syndication, only a few exceed the ESRB standard. In addition, the under-17 viewership of many of the top cable shows watched by teens does not exceed that threshold,157 but these shows reach large numbers of teens every week. Industry members can and do advertise on some of these shows. In fact, marketing documents supplied by one of the companies indicate that several shows contemplated for ad placements would actually be slightly more effective in reaching teens 12 to 17, than adults 18 to 34. Yet the audience for none of those shows is more than 35% under 17. As the Commission has stated in previous reports, the 35% standard cuts off very few shows popular with teens and tweens, and permits companies to widely expose younger teens to ads for M-rated games.

      2. Print ads

      To monitor industry-wide print ad placements of M-rated video games, the Commission monitored Electronic Gaming Monthly, GamePro, and Nintendo Power magazines. Electronic Gaming Monthly and GamePro are widely read by young teens, with 29% and 44%, respectively, of their readership 17 and under. Sixty-nine ads for M-rated games were placed in Electronic Gaming Monthly in issues reviewed between September 2005 and July 2006. Thirty-one ads for M-rated games were placed in the subscription edition of Game Pro magazine.

      Under the 45% industry standard, none of the popular game enthusiast magazines, other than Nintendo Power, is off-limits for M-rated game ads. The marketing plans the Commission reviewed for this Report indicate that all nine of the M-rated games were marketed in one or more of these magazines. These findings are consistent with those of the previous reports regarding the large number of M-rated games advertised in publications widely read by young teens.158

      In the 2004 Report, the Commission also noted the placement of a large number of T-rated games in Nintendo Power, which is widely read by child gamers (the median age of readers is just under 14, with over 25% of its readership under 13). Similar to the results in the 2004 Report, ads for a large number of T-rated games continue to appear in Nintendo Power.159 The ESRB, however, does not view the placement of ads for T-rated games in Nintendo Power as a violation of its anti-targeting standards.160 Ads for the T-rated game Bionicle Heroes ran in the November 2006 editions of Sports Illustrated for Kids, Disney Adventurers, and National Geographic for Kids, publications that ESRB claims to be inappropriate for the advertising of T-rated games based on a review of the publications' demographic data.161

      3. New Media and Marketing Methods
      a. Internet Marketing

      The Commission examined the paid Internet advertising placements for twenty video games released in 2006 with an M rating and at least one violence-related content descriptor.162 According to data obtained from Nielsen//NetRatings, all twenty games were advertised on websites popular with teens. Such sites include http://AddictingGames.com, ARTISTdirect, atom FILMS, A-Z Lyrics Universe, Bolt, Cheat Code Central, http://CheatCodes.com, eBaum's World, GameFAQs, GamesRadar, GameSpot, Gamespy Network, GameWinners, IGN, Lyrics on Demand, http://MP3.com, MTV, Newgrounds, Runescape, and http://Ultimate-Guitar.com.163 Ads for sixteen of the twenty sampled games ran on sites that have audiences comprised of at least 45% children under the age of 17.164 As noted, under the Ad Code, paid ads for M-rated games cannot appear on Internet sites with a 45% or more under-17 audience.165 Thus, the Commission's monitoring suggests that the ESRB is not adequately enforcing even this very limited standard.

      b. Viral Marketing

      Most of the twenty official game sites studied had viral marketing components, including downloadable buddy icons, a community forum or message board, the ability to send e-cards to friends, and links to fansites. One company reported a particularly creative example of viral marketing for its official game website in which the user could select a fighter for the game and then challenge a friend to a fight by inputting the user's and the friend's email addresses. Only one of the twenty games studied for Internet ad placements was found to have advertised on MySpace, and the Commission located no MySpace profile pages for any of the games studied for this Report.

      Marketing documents for one game emphasized the high value and relatively low cost of viral marketing, stating, “Leverage viral online video… viral push of users to the site is expected to create buzz…. MEDIA WILL BE NON-PAID.” The marketing plan for another game referred to a “New and improved FanPimp program” that reportedly had over 3,000 members and indicated a strategy to draw fans with the use of in-game credits.166

      C. Disclosure of Ratings and Reasons for Ratings in Ads

      In its reports, the Commission has recommended that all advertising for movies, music, and video games contain both the rating or label and the reasons for that rating or label. As noted in prior Commission reports, the ESRB has adopted much of what the Commission has recommended. It requires that game ratings and content descriptors be prominently displayed in print advertisements, and that the rating (but not the content descriptors) be included in televison and radio advertising.167

      Since the Commission's first report, the ESRB has made several revisions to its Ad Code that increase the visibility and usefulness of its ratings information, by, for example, increasing the size of the rating icon in print ads, changing the size, design, and prominence of its descriptors on the back of packaging, and requiring age identifiers on the Mature and Adults Only icons (Mature icon now says “MATURE 17+”) and on a new (as of March 2005) rating category Everyone 10+ (E10+). The ESRB also has given game publishers additional guidance on displaying rating information on the Internet and in email marketing campaigns.

      For this Report, the Commission's review of advertising on television and in video game magazines and general interest publications popular with teens found that an overwhelming majority of advertisers were compliant with industry regulations regarding the disclosure of rating information in ads.168 Likewise, of the twenty game websites surfed to determine their compliance with certain ESRB disclosure requirements,169 all displayed the ESRB rating and icon as well as the game's content descriptors without requiring the visitor to hold the cursor over the rating icon, a notable improvement from 2004.170 Sixty-five percent (13 of 20) of the game sites asked the visitor to disclose his or her age before viewing the site. Of those thirteen sites, all of them prevented the visitor from viewing the site if the visitor entered an age under 17. (Addendum D, § III.A, Table 1.)

      Retailers also did a good job of displaying rating information on their websites.171 Further, retailers linked from the web page to information on the ESRB rating system and also linked to the ESRB's website, a dramatic improvement from 2004, when only Circuit City's site did. Some of the sites also provided additional information, such as reviews or descriptions of the game, that may give more details about game play and content. (Addendum D, § III.B, Table 2.)

      D. Industry Efforts to Enforce the Rating System at Point-of-Sale
      1. Mystery Shops

      The Commission's three prior nationwide undercover surveys found that unaccompanied children ages 13 to 16 were able to buy M-rated games 85% (2000), 78% (2001), and 69% (2003) of the time. In late 2003, video game retailers committed to changing store policies to require that children be at least 17 years old to make a purchase.172 The survey results for this Report show substantial improvement in retailer practices. Forty-two percent of the children were able to purchase M-rated games, a statistically significant improvement from the 69% in the 2003 survey.

      There were, moreover, significant and substantial differences between major and non-major game retailers, with national retailers more often restricting sales (62% vs. 37%), posting information about the rating system (47% vs. 20%), and asking age (55% vs. 34%).173 Of all the major retailers shopped, Wal-Mart did the best, allowing only 15% of young teen shoppers to purchase an M-rated game.

      In November 2005, the ESRB established the ESRB Retail Council, composed of most of the major sellers of video games.174 Members of this council not only pledge to have in place policies to restrict sales of M-rated games, but also agree to allow and help fund unannounced undercover shops of their stores, currently scheduled for twice a year, to check on their compliance with this policy. The first undercover shop of council members occurred in September 2006. The September results—65% of shoppers turned away—are similar to the results in the Commission's most recent mystery shop of national video game retailers, where 62% of the shoppers were unable to buy an M-rated game.175

      2. Mobile Phone Games

      Since the 2004 Report, video games playable on cell phones have become increasingly popular. For example, in the Holiday 2005 issue of Official Xbox Magazine and the December 2005 issue of Electronic Gaming Monthly, ads for the following cell phone games appeared: Doom, Brothers in Arms, Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory, Midnight Bowling, Midnight Pool, Prince of Persia: Warrior Within, Platinum Solitaire, Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six: Lockdown, Ultimate Spider-Man, Ancient Empires II, SOCOM: U.S. Navy Seals, King Kong, Medieval Combat, and The Legend of Zorro. None but Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory has an ESRB rating, and none of the ads contained any kind of rating for the games.

      All of the major mobile phone companies offer some type of parental restriction on phone usage, whether it be a specialized phone with parental controls that can be purchased for the child, or the option of restricting access on the child's phone to limit certain services, such as Internet usage and downloading of music and games.176 However, none of the phone company websites made it easy for the user to find out information about parental restrictions or special phones without doing extensive research throughout the website.

      For this Report, the Commission examined the websites of Cingular, Sprint, Alltel, Verizon Wireless, and T-Mobile regarding their marketing of downloadable games for mobile phones. All of the websites advertised mobile phone games unrated by the ESRB but which have M-rated versions on other video game platforms.177 Some of these games had descriptions that implied a high degree of violence.178 A few sites promoted games that have ESRB ratings for the mobile phone version,179 but they did not display the ESRB rating. In November 2005, CTIA, the international association for the wireless telecommunications industry, introduced the Wireless Content Guidelines and Classification Criteria for wireless carriers.180 If implemented by a carrier, these Guidelines classify mobile content as either Restricted Carrier Content181 or Generally Accessible Carrier Content182 based on existing rating or labeling systems for movies, television shows, music, and games. Any content that is not classified as “Restricted Carrier Content” would be considered “Generally Accessible Carrier Content” and would be made available to all consumers. Mobile games that are rated M on other video game platforms would be considered Generally Accessible Carrier Content if they have been edited to not include any Restricted Content Identifiers such as intense profanity or intense violence. Until age verification systems are put in place, carriers have agreed that they will only offer carrier content that is classified as Generally Acceptable.183

      E. Analysis of Current Industry Practices

      The ESRB continues to set a high standard for the clear and prominent disclosure of rating information in television, print, and the Internet. In addition, placements of advertising on television programs popular with teens appear to be diminishing. Yet the Commission's review of Internet advertising found many examples of advertising that would appear to violate the industry's 45% standard. Even if enforced, that standard permits widespread marketing to young teens. Ratings disclosure on product packaging would be enhanced if content descriptors were included on the front of product packaging. Furthermore, the substantial improvement by major retailers in enforcing the M rating at point of sale should help prevent many children from being able to buy these games, unless they have parental permission.

      Critics continue to raise questions about the ESRB's system for rating video games, which relies on game companies to select what game content will be viewed by ESRB raters. This approach creates the potential for the ESRB rating process to miss content that might affect the rating, although this risk may have been ameliorated somewhat by the ESRB's recent enhancement of fines for a company's failure to disclose pertinent content during the rating process.184 In addition, the ESRB's chosen method for assigning content descriptors, at least as applied, may fail to reveal all of the content that might be of interest to parents.

      V. The Commission's 2006 Parent-Child Survey on Video Game Ratings
      A. Background

      For the 2000 Report, the Commission conducted national surveys of parents and children regarding their awareness and use of the ESRB's video game rating system.185 With the ESRB system only six years old at the time, the survey revealed a relatively low level of parental awareness and use of video game ratings. On the positive side, more than eight in ten parents and seven in ten children reported that parents were involved in the decision to purchase a video game for their children as well as the purchase or rental transaction.

      In the 2000 survey, parents and children reported significantly different levels of parental restrictions on video game choices, but agreed that when parents did restrict, the predominant reason was due to the game's violent content; a game's sexual content or profanity, and even its rating, were much lesser considerations. Although only slightly more than half of parents believed that the rating system did a good job of informing them about the level of violent content in video games, more than three quarters stated that the ratings were easy to understand, and the same percentage indicated they were at least somewhat satisfied with the system. Of the children who could name their favorite games, nearly one quarter identified an M-rated game.

      Additional research on awareness and use of the ESRB ratings has been conducted since the 2000 Report. The most recent ESRB telephone survey186 reported that 83% of parents are aware of the ESRB ratings, and 74% of parents use them regularly when buying games for their families. Additionally, 91 % of parents said they are at least somewhat confident that ESRB ratings accurately describe the game's content. According to a report of ESRB's most recent “validity” study of the ratings,187 parents agree with the ESRB ratings 82% of the time, while 13% of the time they find the ratings “too lenient,” and 5% of the time believe the ratings are “too strict.” The study similarly suggests that parents generally consider ESRB ratings “about right” when examined by individual rating category—E (90% of the time), E10+ (71%), T (76%), M (72%). When parents disagree with ESRB ratings, they believe that the ESRB ratings are either “too strict”—E (3% of the time), E10+ (6%), T (7%), M (11%), or “too lenient”—E (7% of the time), E10+ (23%), T (17%), M (17%).

      The 2005 Report Card of the National Institute on Media and the Family (“NIMF”) stated that its parent survey188 had found that only 40% of parents understood all of the video game rating symbols, about one quarter said they allow their children to buy M-rated games, and one half of parents said they do not allow their children to play M-rated games. The Report Card also challenged the “accuracy” of ESRB ratings based on a comparison of several M-rated games from the 1990s to several games from 2004.189 NIMF asserts that this comparison shows that games in 2004 were on average more violent, contained more sexual content, and had more profanity compared to games from the late 1990s, and, therefore, that the ESRB system is flawed in its failure to apply the AO rating more regularly to games that now receive M ratings.190 The most recent Report Card noted survey results showing a wide disparity in the way parents and children perceive parental oversight of game-playing habits, with parents reporting more active involvement and restrictions than their children report.191

      With a grant from the U.S. Department of lustice Office of luvenile lustice and Delinquency Prevention (“OJJDP”), the Harvard Medical School Center for Mental Health and Media conducted two surveys that explored, among other things, children's game-playing habits.192 A 2004 survey of middle school students found that about 37% of games that boys frequently played and 11% of games that girls frequently played were “violent” or “very violent” based on ESRB content descriptors for those games; games in the Grand Theft Auto series were listed as the boys' favorite and the girls' second favorite. A parent survey found that only one quarter of parents play video games with their child at least sometimes. Also, more than 80% of parents said that they “always” or “often” pay attention to a game's ESRB rating when deciding to buy or rent a game for their child.

      In recent years, some legislators, researchers, and parental advocacy groups have voiced concern about parents' knowledge and use of the ESRB system, the validity of the ratings that the ESRB has assigned to some games, and children's ability to purchase M-rated games.193 In response to these concerns and as part of the agency's ongoing monitoring of the electronic game industry's self-regulatory system, the Commission contracted with the survey research firm Synovate to survey parents and children about their familiarity with, use of, and evaluation of the ESRB system. The surveys were similar to the surveys conducted for the 2000 Report, but, in addition to exploring parents' awareness of and attitudes regarding the ESRB system, the new parent survey also contained questions about parents' game playing habits and about their level of agreement with ESRB ratings both generally and specifically regarding rated games that they have personally encountered through buying, renting, playing, or watching games with their children. The child survey also posed some new questions regarding playing habits and their parents' attitudes toward video games. A total of 1,311 parents and 354 children completed interviews. The survey instruments, annotated with results, are reproduced in Addendum C.

      B. Results
      1. Awareness and use

      Overall, the results of the parent and child surveys reflect positively on the ESRB system. Awareness levels of the ESRB system have risen significantly since the 2000 survey. Nearly nine in ten parents (87%) and 75% of children said they are aware that the game rating system exists (compared to 61% of parents and 73% of children reported in 2000). More than eight in ten parents claimed to be aware of and at least slightly familiar with the system. Three quarters of parents claiming familiarity with the video game rating system correctly indicated that the system provides both an age rating and content descriptors (up from 53% in 2000).194 In addition, half of the parents familiar with the rating system named, unaided, three ESRB ratings (E, T, or M), also an improvement from the 2000 survey, which had found that three in five could not name a single one of the game ratings unaided.195 Slightly more than half (55%) of parents familiar with the ESRB system said they are moderately or very familiar with the content descriptors, and another 31% claimed to be slightly familiar.196

      System usage also is up substantially since 2000. Of parents familiar with the ESRB system, nearly three quarters (73%) use the video game's rating most or all of the time when their child wants to buy, rent, or play a game for the first time.197 This result contrasts with the 2000 survey, in which that figure was only 39%. Overall, 61% of parents whose children play video games claimed to use the rating all or most of the time, compared to the 22% level reported in 2000.198 Also encouraging is that three quarters (75%) of parents familiar with content descriptors reported that they use them most, nearly all, or all of the time when their child wants to buy, rent, or play a game for the first time.199 However, slightly over half (54%) of all parents surveyed are familiar with and use content descriptors.

      Parents who sometimes allow their children to play T- and M-rated games reported using the ESRB system more than parents who generally allow their children to play such games.200 These discrepancies in usage data might be explained by the need for parents who allow their children to play T- or M-rated games only on a case-by-case basis to be more engaged with the ESRB system in order to grant or deny permission.

      2. Parental Monitoring of Video Game Purchases, Rentals, and Play

      Up substantially from the 2000 survey, 85% of parents said that they restrict the video games their child can play, compared to 65% of children who reported that their parents restrict their games.

      As in 2000, the data show that parents are more likely to restrict younger children (those between ages 8 and 13) compared to older children (those between ages 14 and 16). About one quarter (24%) of all parents reported restricting based on the game's rating, whereas more than half (52%) reported restricting based on violent content.202 In contrast to the 2000 survey, larger percentages of parents and children reported that parents restrict based on sexual content and profanity (as well as the game's rating).

      Forty percent of parents familiar with the ESRB system reported that they either sometimes (34%) or generally (6%) allow their child under age 17 to play M-rated games. Children reported an even higher level of parental permissiveness; 57% reported that they are sometimes (36%) or generally (21%) allowed to play M-rated games, including 37% of child respondents between the ages of 8 and 10 years.203 Consistent with the 2000 survey, nearly one quarter (23%) of children identified at least one M-rated game as a favorite.204 The survey data also suggest that children are more likely to be permitted to play M-rated games the older they are, the more hours per week they play video games, and the more hours per week their parents play video games.205

      As in the 2000 survey, parents and children reported a high level of parental involvement in selecting and purchasing video games for their children.211 Almost three quarters of children (71%) and 86% of parents claimed that the parent is involved in the decision about which video games to buy or rent. With regard to the purchase or rental transaction, 83% of children and 89% of parents reported that the parent usually is involved.212 This high level of parental involvement suggests that, at the very least, most parents have the opportunity to review rating and other information on the product packaging to determine whether they approve of the game's content.213

      Finally, it appears that most parents review at least some of the game content after its purchase by or for their child. When asked about the last game that was purchased by or for their child, 39% of those parents reported that they had watched or played most of the game or the entire game at least once, and another 37% said that they had watched or played some of the game at least once. This post-transaction monitoring may give parents another opportunity to approve or disapprove of video game content.215

      3. Parental Satisfaction and Agreement with ESRB Ratings

      Although more than half of parents familiar with the system (60%) said that the rating system does a “good” or “excellent” job informing them about the level of violence in games, 36% said the system does a “fair” or “poor” job. Parents reported similar satisfaction for the levels of sexual content and profanity. Nevertheless, nearly all parents (94%) at least slightly familiar with the ratings reported that the ratings were “moderately” or “very easy” to understand, and a similarly large majority (87%) of these familiar parents reported that they were either “very satisfied” (36%) or “somewhat satisfied” (51%) with the ratings.

      As noted, ESRB research indicates that 82% of the time parents agree with ESRB ratings overall and, specifically, that parents have a very high level of agreement with E-ratings and a moderately lower level of agreement with E10+, T, and M ratings. The Commission's survey included several questions designed to determine parents' general level of agreement with ratings assigned to games with which they are personally familiar. Among parents familiar with the ESRB system, 64% said that most or all of the time video game ratings match their personal view of whether a game maybe suitable for children in the age group indicated in the game's rating. Another 24% of parents said they agree with the ESRB ratings some of the time.216 More parents of younger children (26%) expressed agreement with ESRB ratings all or nearly all of the time compared to parents of older children (12%).217

      C. Analysis of Survey Findings

      The parent and child surveys paint a mostly positive picture of the ESRB system. The system is a useful and important tool that parents increasingly use to help them make informed decisions about games for their children. The survey results do suggest, however, at least two important issues that the ESRB should explore. First, as was the case six years ago, more than one third of parents believe that the ESRB system does a “fair” or “poor” job informing them about the level of violence in video games. Parents expressed similar opinions about the system with regard to sexual content and profanity. Only a little more than one third of parents are “very satisfied” with the way the system provides information about the games their children want to play. Second, almost one third of parents reported agreeing with ESRB ratings only some of the time, rarely, or never. Likewise, the ESRB's research suggests that nearly half of parents are only somewhat confident in ESRB ratings, and raises a question about whether a relatively small, but significant, percentage of E10+-, T-, and M-rated games should be rated more restrictively.

      These data do not suggest that ESRB ratings overall, or for a particular rating category, are generally invalid or “inaccurate.” Uniform agreement among parents about game ratings is unrealistic, given that the rating exercise involves some degree of subjectivity. Moreover, the impact of occasional disagreement with ESRB ratings may be buffered by the relatively high level of participation and monitoring parents have reported exercising when it comes to their children's game play. Of particular note was the high percentage of parents who played or viewed some or most of the last game that was purchased for or by their child, as well as the increasing percentage of parents who reported using ESRB ratings as a basis to restrict the games their children play. Accordingly, although parents are not universally satisfied, and do not universally agree, with the ESRB ratings, they generally appear to be using ESRB ratings as a decision-making tool in conjunction with their own separate monitoring of their children's game-playing habits.

      VI. Conclusion

      Six years after the Commission's first report on self-regulation and industry practices by the motion picture, music recording, and electronic game industries, the Commission finds, with a few exceptions, general compliance with existing voluntary standards, but insufficient attention to the development and application of these standards to evolving marketing trends. The movie and video game industries continue to comply, for the most part, with their self-regulatory limits on ad placement on television and in print media. Yet, as the Commission has noted in previous reports, the industries continue to market R-rated movies, M-rated video games, and explicit-content labeled music in media with large teen audiences. This practice is particularly evident in the industries' marketing on the Internet, an increasingly important medium that reaches millions of children each day. Although the video game industry has adopted limits on Internet advertising, the relevant standard—ads cannot appear on a site where more than 45% of visitors are under 17—is so permissive that advertisements for M-rated games can reach large numbers of young teens and children. Moreover, the Commission's review found many examples of non-compliance with even that limited restriction. The movie and music industries have adopted no standards restricting Internet advertising for R-rated movies and explicit-content labeled music.

      The Commission therefore recommends that the video game industry tighten its existing ad placement guidelines restricting advertising in venues where the under-17 audience reaches or exceeds 35% on television and radio and 45% in print or online, and that the movie and music industries adopt such guidelines. Specifically, as in prior reports, the Commission suggests that to further limit the use of popular teen media to advertise violent entertainment products, the industries consider using a range of factors to help identify those venues most popular with teens.219 Such factors include: the percentage of the audience under 17; the total number of children reached; and the popularity with children and apparent ages of the characters or performers. Other factors—such as the time of day an ad airs on radio or television—also could be considered.220 Such guidelines would diminish children's exposure to ads for M-rated games, R-rated movies, and explicit-content labeled recordings, while still permitting their promotion to their intended audience.

      The Commission is encouraged that all three industries disclose rating information in most forms of advertising, and generally in a clear and conspicuous manner, although the music industry needs to do significantly better in television advertising, and both the movie and music industries should exercise greater care in newer venues, such as artist or product profile pages on social networking sites. Moreover, the music industry has responded positively to the growing use of the Internet to buy and download music by enhancing its guidelines to require a disclosure whenever an individual song's content is explicit. Music download sites, however, need to do a better job of making the PAL readable.

      For product packaging, the movie industry typically places the movie's rating and rating reasons on the back of each video and DVD. Although the electronic game industry places the rating on the front of the package, it still places the content descriptors on the back. The Commission renews its recommendation that both industries consider placing all of the rating information prominently on the front of product packaging to make that information more visible to parents. Moreover, the Commission continues to recommend that the music industry consider providing more information on product packaging and in advertising as to why a particular recording has been labeled with a Parental Advisory. Sony BMG's use of an enhanced label that includes additional information is a good model for others to follow.

      As the Commission's latest mystery shops show, national video game sellers significantly improved their record of enforcement compared to their performance at the time of the Commission's last report. They cut the rate at which underage shoppers could buy M-rated games nearly in half, to under 40%. One retailer—Wal-Mart—stood out from the others, permitting fewer than two out often shoppers to buy an M-rated game.

      On the other hand, music and movie DVD retailers have made little progress in adopting and enforcing point-of-sale age restrictions. The Commission continues to find that most teens (more than 70%) can purchase rated or labeled entertainment products at a significant number of stores. Excluding Wal-Mart and Kmart, which enforced their point-of-sale-polices very well, retailers showed little improvement in restricting sales to children. Although theater owners performed much better than DVD retailers—denying admission to six out of ten underage moviegoers, their record of denying admission has remained flat since the 2004 Report, even though all theater chains have longstanding policies restricting such admissions. The Commission encourages further implementation and enforcement of these point-of-sale policies.

      The Commission encourages the MPAA and CARA to consider whether the current marketing and sales of unrated or “Director's Cut” movie DVDs that have R-rated versions undermine the self-regulatory system. Because it appears that some of these unrated DVDs contain content that, if rated, would result in an NC-17 rating, the Commission suggests that the MPAA, together with the EMA, consider establishing policies for the advertising and sale of these DVDs. Such policies would assist retail store clerks seeking to enforce any store policy of not selling such movie videos to children.

      Finally, researchers, policymakers, and industry critics have raised questions about the various methods used by each industry to rate and label their products. Parents should be able to rely on complete rating systems where decisions are made after a fair review of all appropriate content, and where rating and labeling information reasonably informs them about the content. To this end, the motion picture industry should evalu ate the need to clarify its standards to better distinguish the level of violence in PG-13 movies compared to R-rated movies.

      The Commission repeats the recommendation it has made in prior reports that the music industry consider providing more specific information on product packaging and in advertising about the nature of the explicit content in a music recording. This modification would require industry members to conduct a more thorough review of recordings than currently required under the PAL system, but would allow parents and children to make better informed purchase decisions.

      As the Commission has recommended in the past, the ESRB should make the content descriptors, which convey information about the level and type of game content, more prominent on the package. Also, the ESRB should consider conducting targeted research into the reasons why a significant minority of parents believe the system could do a better job of informing them about the level of violence, sex, or profanity in some games. Based on this research, the ESRB should consider whether any changes to its rating process, criteria, or disclosure methods are warranted.

      Given important First Amendment considerations, the Commission supports private sector initiatives by industry and individual companies to implement these suggestions. The Commission will continue to monitor this area, particularly as emerging technologies change the way these products are marketed and sold. The Commission also will continue to work with industry and others to encourage efforts to provide parents with the information they need to decide which products are appropriate for their children. Following a reasonable period of monitoring industry practices and consumer concerns, the Commission will issue another report.

      Endnotes

      1. Marketing Violent Entertainment to Children: A Review of Self-Regulation and Industry Practices in the Motion Picture, Music Recording & Electronic Game Industries: A Report of the Federal Trade Commission (Sept. 2000) (hereafter “2000 Report”), available at http://www.ftc.gov/reports/violence/vioreport.pdf.

      2. See id. at iii-iv.

      3. See 2000 Report, supra note 1, Appendix F at 27, available at http://www.ftc.gov/reports/violence/appendicesviorpt.pdf

      4. See 2000 Report, supra note 1, at 54–55.

      5. Marketing Violent Entertainment to Children: A Six-Month Follow-Up Review of Industry Practices in the Motion Picture, Music Recording & Electronic Game Industries: A Report to Congress (April 2001) (hereafter “April 2001 Report”), available at http://www.ftc.gov/reports/violence/violenceO10423.pdf.

      6. Marketing Violent Entertainment To Children: A One-Year Follow-Up Review of Industry Practices in the Motion Picture, Music Recording & Electronic Game Industries (Dec. 2001) (hereafter “December 2001 Report”), available at http://www.ftc.gov/os/2001/12/violencereportl.pdf

      7. Marketing Violent Entertainment to Children: A Twenty-One Month Follow-Up Review of Industry Practices in the Motion Picture, Music Recording & Electronic Game Industries: A Report to Congress (June 2002) (hereafter “2002 Report”), available at http://www.ftc.gov/reports/violence/mvecrpt0206.pdf

      8. Marketing Violent Entertainment To Children: A Fourth Follow-Up Review of Industry Practices in the Motion Picture, Music Recording & Electronic Game Industries (July 2004) (hereafter “2004 Report”), available at http://www.ftc.gov/os/2004/07/040708kidsviolencerpt.pdf

      9. The Commission staff obtained information from the following media companies: Universal Studios, Inc., Sony Pictures Entertainment, Lionsgate Entertainment Corp., Sony BMG Music Entertainment, Universal Music Group, Warner Music Group, Electronic Arts, Inc., THQ, Inc., and Ubisoft Entertainment.

      10. See http://www.mpaa.org/Ratings_historyl.asp (last visited Sept. 20, 2006).

      11. See Letter from Gregory P. Goeckner, Senior Vice President and Deputy General Counsel, MPAA, to Richard F. Kelly, Senior Attorney, Federal Trade Commission, at 7 (Aug. 10, 2006) (hereafter “MPAA Letter”) (on file with Commission staff).

      12. See http://www.mpaa.org/Ratings_FAQ.asp (last visited Sept. 15, 2006). A recent documentary on the film rating system, however, reports that nearly half of the raters have children no younger than their twenties or thirties. See National Public Radio, Fresh Air Segment, A Look Inside Hollywood's Ratings System, Interview with Kirby Dick, maker of This Film Is Not Yet Rated (Sept. 13,2006), available at http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyld=6068009 (last visited Oct. 12,2006). The MPAA recently announced that it will formalize its rule that a member of the ratings board cannot stay on the rating board after his or her children are grown. See Pamela McClintock, MPAA, NATO Reform Ratings System, Variety, Jan. 16, 2007, available at http://www.variety.com/article/VR1117957535.html?categoryid=13&cs=l (last visited Mar. 27, 2007).

      13. See Interview with Joan Graves, Chairman of the CARA Board, available at http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyld=6068012 (last visited Oct. 13,2006).

      14. http://www.mpaa.org/Ratings_FAQ.asp (last visited Sept. 15, 2006).

      15. See http://www.mpaa.org/Ratings_HowRated.asp (last visited Sept. 15, 2006).

      16. See http://www.mpaa.org/Ratings_FAQ.asp (last visited Sept. 15, 2006).

      17. Other recently announced changes to CARA rules, designed to increase the transparency of the ratings process, include: 1) providing demographic information on all the raters; 2) publishing the names of the CARA Chairperson and Senior Raters; 3) publishing CARA rules on the MPAA and NATO websites; and 4) formalizing a training process for raters. For more information about these changes, see Kendrick Macdowell, NATO Vice President, General Counsel and Director of Government Affairs, Reviewing the Ratings System: Ratings Reforms Focus on Transparency, Efficiency, Boxoffice Magazine, available at http://www.boxoffice.com/boxoffice_scr/boxof-fice_story.asp?terms=2821 (last visited Mar. 28, 2007); Editorial, Movie Ratings Get a Much-Needed Makeover: The Industry's Aging Ratings System Make [sic] a Promising First Step Toward More Transparency, L.A. Times, Jan. 19, 2007, available at http://www.latimes.com/news/printedition/opinion/la-ed-mpaal9jan19,1,749915.story?coll=la-news-comment&ctrack=l&cset=true (last visited Mar. 27,2007).

      18. According to the MPAA, its latest poll showed that 80% of parents with children under 13 found the ratings to be “very useful” to “fairly useful” in helping them make decisions for the moviegoing of their children. See MPAA Press Release, Parents Give Rating Board High Marks (Nov. 1, 2006) (on file with Commission staff).

      19. Letter from Common Sense Media to Keith Fentonmiller, Attorney, Division of Advertising Practices, Federal Trade Commission at 3 (Oct. 17, 2006) (criticizing the MPAA system for being fully funded by the major studios and for lacking transparency with regard to the criteria for awarding ratings, including whether any criteria are based on child development principles); Testimony of David Kinney, CEO, TSV Ratings, Inc. before the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science & Transportation (Sept. 28, 2004), available at http://www.commerce.senate.gov/hearings/testimony.cfm?id=1322&wit_id=3852 (last visited Oct. 26,2006); Gail Schiller, Indie Group Forms Ratings Coalition, The Hollywood Reporter (July 1, 2004) (quoting David Kinney), available at http://www.psvratings.com/news_article2.html (last visited Oct. 26, 2006); http://www.kids-in-mind.com/help/methodology.htm (arguing that the MPAA system is “not accurate” because the “MPAA itself is not an independent body but is financed and controlled by the film industry, its standards are constantly shifting to accommodate marketing decisions by the film industry, the ratings are negotiable …, and the ratings are age-specific, not content-specific and thus essentially approximations”); http://www.kids-in-mind.com/help/ratings.html (last visited Oct. 26, 2006) (“While the MPAA is doing a good job most of the time, we have found that its close relationship with the filmmaking industry has produced some questionable ratings, expecially when it comes to films by powerful directors or producers ….”); Brad J. Bushman & Joanne Cantor, Media Ratings for Violence and Sex: Implications for Policymakers and Parents, 58 Am. Psychologist 139 (Feb. 2003) (criticizing the MPAA system, among others, for not involving child development experts or psychologists in determining ratings); NPR Interview with Kirby Dick, supra note 12 (advocating greater transparency in the rating system, the use of professional raters, and an additional rating category between R and NC-17).

      20. Bushman, supra note 19, at 134.

      21. The PSVratings system uses trained auditors to record and quantify all instances of profanity, sex, and violence in a movie. These data are then filtered through a complex set of rating rules developed by an independent board of child experts to assign each content symbol (“P” for profanity, “S” for sex, and “V” for violence), a color that denotes the degree ofthat content in the movie—ranging from white (no such content) and escalating to green, yellow, and then red (most intense or explicit content). See http://www.psvratings.com/about_chart.html (last visited Sept. 15, 2006). PSVratings temporarily suspended operations on May 30, 2006. See Brendan Sinclear, PSVratings Shuts Down, Game Spot (Sept. 11,2006), available at http://www.gamespot.com/news/6157403.html (last visited Oct. 26,2006); Jason Dobson, ESRB Ratings Alternative PSVratings Shuts Down, Gamasutra (Sept. 11, 2006), available at http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_index.php?story=10827 (last visited Oct. 26,2006). PSVratings plans to resume operations in the near future.

      22. The Parent Previews system uses a staff of reviewers to assign letter grades (e.g., A, B, C, D) based on the level of violence, sexual content, language, and drugs/alcohol content in a movie; it also assigns a more subjective “overall” grade that reflects an opinion on the artistic merits, quality, and theme of the movie. Like PSVratings, Parent Previews is not an age-based system. See http://www.movies.go.com/parent-previews/info?topic=grades (last visited Sept. 15, 2006); http://movies.go.com/parentpreviews/info?topic=faq (last visited Sept. 15, 2006).

      23. According to the Kids In Mind website: Unlike the MPAA, we do not assign a single, age-specific rating and we do not make recommendations. Instead we assign each film three distinct, category-specific ratings: one for SEX & NUDITY, one for VIOLENCE & GORE and one for PROFANITY. Each rating is on a scale of zero to ten, depending on quantity … as well as context…. In addition to assigning three ratings, we also explain in detail why a film rates high or low in a specific category, and we include instances of SUBSTANCE USE, a list of DISCUSSION TOPICS (topics that may elicit questions from kids) and MESSAGES (what values the film conveys). http://www.kids-in-mind.com/help/methodology.htm (last visited Oct. 26,2006) (emphases in original).

      24. Screen It! is an online service that provides content and plot summaries, scene-by-scene details, and artistic reviews. See http://www.screenit.com (last visited Sept. 15, 2006). Its ratings consist of a content grid, describing the intensity of content in 15 categories, including alcohol/drugs, blood/gore, disrespectful/bad attitude, frightening/tense scene, guns/weapons, profanity, sex/nudity, smoking, and violence. Its ratings also provide extremely detailed descriptions of all of the scenes and elements that fit into each content category.

      25. Using child development criteria, Common Sense Media reviewers classify movies based on age appropriateness and create a “content grid” that lists specific information on content such as sexuality, language, violence, alcohol/drug use, “commercialism,” and “social behavior.” See http://www.commonsensemedia.org/reviews/age-grid.php (last visited Sept. 18, 2006); http://www.commonsensemedia.org/reviews/our_ratings.php (last visited Sept. 18,2006).

      26. See http://www.mpaa.org/RatingsParentInfo.asp (last visited Sept. 20,2006); http://www.mpaa.org/Ratings_FAQ.asp (last visited Sept. 15, 2006).

      27. See http://www.pauseparentplay.org/see/index.php#movies (last visited Sept. 19, 2006).

      28. Kimberly M. Thompson & Fumie Yokota, Violence, Sex, and Profanity in Films: Correlation of Movie Ratings with Content, Medscape General Medicine (July 12, 2004), available at http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/480900 (last visited Oct. 26, 2006).

      29. See supra notes 21 to 25 and accompanying text for brief descriptions of these alternative rating systems. The MPAA argues that the researchers' analysis is flawed because Screen It! is a commercial site that requires a subscription fee and makes value judgments on the quality of the films it reviews. See MPAA Letter, supra note 11, at 6. MPAA further asserts that, unlike CARA raters, the “critics” employed by Kids-in-Mind fail to consider the content of movies in context, instead simply conducting a “numerical calculation of the elements of a motion picture.” Id.

      30. See Thompson, Violence, Sex, and Profanity, supra note 28. A recent study of the 100 top-grossing films from 1994 found that, on average, R-rated films contain more acts of violence than PG or PG-13 films. See Lucille Jenkins, Theresa Webb, Nick Browne, A.A. Afifi, & Jess Kraus, An Evaluation of the Motion Picture Association of America's Treatment of Violence in PG-, PG-13-, and R-Rated Films, 115 Pediatrics 512–17 (May 2005). The study also found, however, a significant variation in the number of violent acts within the PG and PG-13 rating categories; 20% of the PG films studied exceeded the average number of violent acts in the PG-13 films, and the violence in 10% of the PG films exceeded the average amount of violence in the R-rated films. Moreover, at least one quarter of the violent acts depicted in the PG-, PG-13-, and R-rated movies involved the use of deadly force. It is unclear whether the study considered the intensity of the violence depicted in films with different ratings or whether the films with less restrictive ratings tended to depict fantasy or cartoon violence versus realistic violence. Nevertheless, an overlap in the number of violent acts across rating categories could make it more difficult for parents who restrict their children's access to movies based on violence.

      31. MPAA has not always been consistent on the distinctions between the two ratings. According to the MPAA, “[i]f violence is too rough or persistent, the film goes into the R (restricted) rating,” implying that some level of rough or persistent violence may be present in PG-13 films. See http://www.mpaa.org/FlmRat_Ratings.asp (last visited Sept. 19, 2006). Yet CARA's website states that “[r] ough or persistent violence is absent” from a PG-13 movie. See http://www.filmratings.com (Ratings Guide) (last visited Sept. 20,2006).

      32. Moreover, descriptions of violence in some PG-13 films, such as “intense sequences of violent action” (The Transporter 2, The Marine); “intense sequences of violence” (The Island, End of the Spear); “violence and terror” (83 Hours 'til Dawn); “horror violence and disturbing images” (Ghost Rider); and “violence, disturbing images” (The Fog), suggest a level of violence similar to, and in some cases greater than, that found in some R-rated movies. Compare Dragon Head (“some violence and disturbing images”); Thunderbolt (“violence”); Hell Raiders (“violence”); The Contract (“violence”); Half Light (“some images of violence”); The Lost City (“violence”); Premonition (“some disturbing images”); and The Psychic (“some violence”). Id. il. Ron Leone & Lynn Osborn, Hollywood's Triumph and Parents' Loss: An Examination of the PG-13 Rating, 2 Popular Comm. 85–101 (2004).

      33. MPAA Worldwide Market Research, U.S. Theatrical Market: 2005 Statistics at 3, available at http://www.mpaa.org/researchStatistics.asp (last visited Oct. 26, 2006). In 2005, twelve of the top twenty grossing films were rated PG-13. Id. at 12.

      34. Leone, supra note 32, at 88–89; Kinney Testimony, supra note 19. See also http://www.kids-in-mind.com/help/about.htm (“[T]he rating of choice right now is PG-13. A movie with a PG-13 rating is just easier to market: parents like it better than the more adult R-rating, and kids like it better than the more juvenile PG rating; plus, a PG-13 rating is merely a ‘cautionary’ rating, as opposed to the more restrictive R-rating…. So, in order to accommodate the marketing demands of studios and theaters, the MPAA has been slowly but surely changing its criteria so that a PG-13 movie today contains far more violence, sexual content and profanity than a few years ago ….”) (last visited Sept. 15, 2006).

      35. See Marketing of Violent Motion Picture Products to Children, Hearing before the Committee on Commerce, Science, Transportation of the U.S. Senate (Sept. 27, 2000) (statement of Jack Valenti, President and CEO, MPAA), available at http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=106_senate_hearings&docid=f:85586.wais (last visited Oct. 26, 2006). Not every movie studio is an MPAA member. Studios who subscribed to the MPAAs Twelve-Point Initiatives are: Walt Disney Company, Dreamworks SKG, Metro-Gold-wyn-Mayer, Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation, Universal Studios, and Warner Bros. Id.

      36. 2000 Report, supra note 1, at 13–14.

      37. See Valenti Testimony, supra note 35.

      38. For “prime” (broadcast) television ads, the plan stated in part, “None of the 2005-'06 shows has a V2–17 comp [audience composition] of 35% or more.” For cable, the plan stated, “Will avoid after school sitcoms on all networks.” With regard to USA's WWE programming, the plan stated “Recommend only purchasing Mon, 9-lip airing per net[work] restriction.” For MTV, the plan restricts television ads to “[p]ost 7p in addition to net [work]'s restriction from TRL [Total Request Live].” The plan recommended against purchasing spots on MTV2. Spot television restrictions include avoiding “after school sitcoms (4–6pm PT/ET or 3–5 pm CT/MT) plus select dating/reality shows with high V2–17 comp during these time periods.” The plan noted no restrictions for spot radio advertising, but for print advertising, it said to avoid Teen People, Seventeen, Dirt Rider, Marvel Comics Jr/Sr net, DC Comics—Youth, Young Nets, MAD, WWE magazines, SI for Kids, Boys Life, Teen Vogue, and Cosmo Girl. The plan asks to “include in buy schedule % comp for V2–17, in order to monitor shows which may be inappropriate for an R rating.”

      39. An accompanying chart broke out the teen group by age “19 and under.” Another R-rated movie by the same studio revealed that 14% of the audience was under age 17.

      40. Fourteen percent of the movie audience during the opening weekend was under age 17.

      41. See Marketing of Violent Motion Picture Products to Children (statements of Jim Gianopulos, Chairman, Fox Films; Alan Horn, President and COO, Warner Brothers; and Chris McGurk, Vice Chairman and Chief Operating Officer, MGM), supra note 35. Many studios also pledged not to attach trailers for violent R-rated movies to PG-rated movies. Members of NATO similarly pledged not to show trailers advertising R-rated films in connection with any G- or PG-rated feature film and for some PG-13 rated films. See National Association of Theatre Owners, Response of the National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO) to the Report and Recommendations of the Federal Trade Commission (Nov. 2, 2000), available at http://www.natoonline.org/NATO_FTC_Response.pdf (last visited Oct. 27, 2006). Specifically, with respect to trailers for R-rated films shown in connection with PG-13-rated features, NATO members pledged to “examine the trailers to ensure that their tone and content are consistent with the feature film.” Id. Recent examples of trailers for R-rated movies deemed inappropriate to run before PG-13 movies include the horror movies Hostel and Saw II. See Revised Response by the National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO) to the Federal Trade Commission Regarding the Commissions 2006 Study of the Marketing of Violent Entertainment to Children at 9 (Oct. 6, 2006) (hereafter “NATO Letter”).

      NATO reported that one theater chain deemed trailers for films like Boogeyman, Devil's Rejects, 40 Year Old Virgin, Brokeback Mountain, and Texas Chainsaw Massacre would not be appropriate for blockbuster PG-13 films that tend to attract large family audiences, such as Superman, Spider-Man 2, or Pirates of the Carribean 2: Dead Man's Chest. Recently, NATO reported that different individual theater companies have gone further by either adopting a policy of playing no trailers for any given rating before feature films with a lower rating; never playing trailers for R-rated movies before PG-13-rated films; or considering some trailers for PG-13 films inappropriate for certain audiences of G films. See NATO Letter, supra, at 9. In May 2006, MPAA revised its advertising guidelines on trailer placement for R and NC-17 movies to be consistent with NATO's policy. MPAA Advertising Handbook at 22–30 (2006) (on file with Commission staff). Movie producers or distributors cannot request that trailers for R or NC-17 movies run before movies rated G and PG. Id. at 30. Additionally, the Advertising Administration may limit the placement of trailers for R and NC-17 movies before PG-13 movies. Id. The same theatrical trailer restrictions apply to the home video and DVD formats. Id. at 41.

      42. 7d.at31.

      43. All advertising for films rated by CARA must be submitted to the MPAA Advertising Administration prior to being released to the public. The Advertising Administration reviews these materials to determine their suitability for general audiences, and to make sure that the advertising is placed appropriately. See http://www.mpaa.org/FlmRat_Advertising.asp (last visited Oct. 20,2006).

      44. See MPAA Letter, supra note 11, at 9.

      45. Id. at 9–10.

      46. Telephone Conference with Gregory P. Goeckner, Senior Vice President, Acting General Counsel, MPAA, and Marilyn Gordon, MPAA Advertising Administration (Oct. 16,2006).

      47. December 2001 Report, supra note 6, at 5.

      48. According to its website, the Parents Television Council (“PTC”) is “a nonpartisan organization that works with elected and appointed government officials to enforce broadcast decency standards …. The PTC has more than 100,000 hours of entertainment programming in its custom-designed Entertainment Tracking System (ETS),” a database the PTC uses to produce “research and publications focusing on a variety of topics relating to the content of prime time television—including in-depth analyses of the ‘family hour’ and the television ratings system.” http://www.parentstv.org/PTC/aboutus/main.asp (last visited Oct. 23, 2006).

      49. Ads for R-rated movies also appeared on two reality series—UPN's America's Top Model and the syndicated Fear Factor—that are widely watched by young teens. These placements included ads for Saw II (DVD), Miami Vice, The Omen, Final Destination 3, V for Vendetta, Doom (DVD), and Inside Man. In addition, ads for R-rated movies appeared on several other syndicated shows popular with teens—Ber-nie Mac, Girlfriends, and That '70s Show—including Freedomland, Final Destination 3, Underworld Evolution, Hostel (DVD), Slither, The Omen, Waist Deep, and Miami Vice. Children 2 to 17 make up between 20% and 25% of the audience for each of these shows.

      50. CARU's self-regulatory guidelines provide that products that are inappropriate for children under the age of 12 should not be advertised or promoted directly to such children. CARU believes that by placing ads for PG-13 movies during children's programming, the advertising is sending an implicit message that “these films are suitable for all children.” CARU Press Release, CARU Reviews Advertising for “Click” (Oct. 2006), available at http://www.caru.org/news/index.asp (last visited Oct. 26, 2006).

      51. Advertisements for two R-rated DVDs from New Line Home Entertainment, Running Scared and Final Destination 3, appeared in Electronic Gaming Monthly.

      52. U.S. Theatrical Market, supra note 33, at 16 (reporting that from 2001 to 2005, television advertising expenditures decreased from a high of 42.3% of total expenditures to 36%; over the same period, expenditures for online advertising increased from 1.3% to 2.6%). Still, Internet advertising on third-party websites remains a relatively small component of advertising expenditures.

      53. The movies examined for paid Internet ad placements were: The Descent, Inside Man, Miami Vice, The Black Dahlia, Slither, Crank, Basic Instinct 2, The Omen, Haven, Silent Hill, Snakes on a Plane, Idlewild, Hostel, See No Evil, A Scanner Darkly, The Quiet, The Protector, Waist Deep, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning, and District B13. The movies were selected based on the following criteria: released or scheduled for release in 2006 (starting with the most recent release); rated R, with at least one rating reason involving violence; and promoted through paid Internet advertising, according to the Nielsen//NetRatings AdRelevance database.

      54. See Addendum E, § III., Table 5.

      55. See, e.g., Kaiser Family Foundation, It's Child's Play: Advergaming and the Online Marketing of Food to Children at 15–16 (July 2006) (reporting on many food companies' use of viral marketing tools, such as the ability to send friends e-cards, links to the site, or games on the sites), available at http://www.kff.org/entmedia/7536.cfm (last visited Oct. 27, 2006).

      56. Internet web browsers often contain tools for restricting children's access to particular types of content. Internet service providers also may allow parents to control access to content based on the child's age and to implement controls for chat, instant messaging, e-mail, newsgroups, and file downloads, including file-sharing. Parents even may install filtering software on their computers to block access to particular websites or control the download of programs, music files, and movies. These tools are imperfect, however, and may not restrict all objectionable content or may unduly restrict permissible content.

      57. The Nielsen//NetRatings AdRelevance database did not indicate that Universal Picture's Miami Vice was advertised on MySpace during 2006. Universal Pictures, however, informed the Commission that it purchased a “User Homepage Roadblock” on MySpace. See Letter from Carolyn A. Hampton, Vice President, Legal Affairs, Universal Pictures Business & Legal Affairs, to Keith R. Fentonmiller, Attorney, Federal Trade Commission, at 2 (Sept. 18,2006) (on file with Commission staff) (stating that a User Homepage Roadblock was purchased for Miami Vice targeting MySpace users in the 18 to 49 age group). As described in a marketing document from another studio, the result of a roadblock is that any person who goes onto MySpace must log in on the homepage, where there will be large ads for the movie directly above and to the left of the sign-in area.

      58. See Addendum E, § III., Table 6. A recent Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg poll reported that 43% of 12- to 17-year-olds go on MySpace or other social networks, including 38% of children between the ages of 12 and 14. See Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg, Computers, Cell Phones and Multitasking: A Look Inside the Entertainment Life of 12–24 Year Olds at 25 (Summer 2006), available at http://www.latimes.com/media/acrobat/2006-08/24767411.pdf (last visited Oct. 27, 2006).

      59. See Addendum E, § III., Tables 6 & 7.

      60. The Commission examined official websites promoting the following twenty motion pictures in September 2006: 10th and Wolf, A Scanner Darkly, Children of Men, Crank, District B13, Feast, Haven, Idlewild, Miami Vice, Saw III, Snakes on a Plane, The Black Dahlia, The Departed, The Descent, The Fountain, The Omen, The Protector, The Quiet, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning, and Waist Deep. The movies were selected based on the following criteria: (a) released or scheduled for release between June 1,2006 and December 31, 2006; rated R, with at least one rating reason involving violence; and an active website or webpage promoting the movie. This list of official movie websites differs from the list of twenty R-rated movies the Commission examined for paid Internet advertising placements. See supra note 53 for a list of these movies. The Commission's examination of the official movie websites is discussed in greater detail in Addendum D, § I.A.

      61. These movies were Idlewild (through the Outkast profile page), A Scanner Darkly, Crank, District B13, Haven, Snakes on a Plane, The Departed, The Omen, and Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning. Universal Pictures also reported that it created a MySpace profile page for the movie Slither. See Universal Pictures Letter, supra note 57, at 2 (stating that a MySpace profile page was created for Slither).

      62. Two other movies {The Quiet and The Black Dahlia) had MySpace profile pages, but they did not appear to have been created by the studio.

      63. A buddy icon is another term for an avatar, which is an icon or image that represents the user.

      64. A plan from one studio proposed to “target Myspace users that have similar films and related actors listed in their profile.”

      65. See Addendum D, § I.A., Table 1.

      66. See, e.g., 2004 Report, supra note 8, at 6–8,10; 2002 Report, supra note 7, at 4–6, 9–10; December 2001 Report, supra note 6, at 9–12.

      67. MPAA Advertising Handbook, supra note 41, at 16,18, 31–32, 34. Films rated G are not assigned rating reasons. See http://www.mpaa.org/Ratings_FAQ.asp (last visited Sept. 15, 2006).

      68. See http://www.mpaa.org/FlmRat_RedCarpet.asp (last visited Sept. 21, 2006).

      69. See MPAA Letter, supra note 11, at 10.

      70. See NATO Letter, supra note 41, at 11.

      71. See Addendum E, § I. & Table 1.

      72. The Commission reviewed newspapers and magazine advertisements between September 2005 and December 2005 for movies rated PG-13 and R for violence to determine whether the ratings and reasons were disclosed and whether the disclosure was made in a clear and conspicuous manner. Consistent with prior Commission reports, nearly all of the ads contained both the ratings and reasons, and in most cases, the rating reasons were clearly and conspicuously displayed. The reasons in some ads were notably clear, such as those for Lions Gates' Saw II and New Line Cinemas' A History of Violence. In several ads, the rating reasons were smaller and sometimes difficult to read due to gray-on-black or gray-on-white text. In some other ads, the rating or reasons were entirely unreadable, including some ads for Focus Features, Aloha Films, Universal, Sony Picture Classics, Warner Brothers, Dimension Films, and 20th Century Fox.

      73. The four websites were those of Twentieth Century Fox, Sony Pictures, Universal Pictures, and Warner Brothers. The website for Sony Pictures indicated only the movies' ratings, not their rating reasons. The Commission located no unrated movies for sale on Universal Pictures' website.

      74. The Commission examined the practices of five online retailers in September 2006—http://Amazon.com, http://BestBuy.com, http://CircuitCity.com, http://SamGoody.com, and http://TowerRecords.com—with respect to five violent unrated movies that also have an MPAA R-rated version: Alexander, Bloodrayne, Crash, Basic Instinct (re-release), and The Yards. See Addendum D, § I.C, Tables 4 & 5 for more detailed results of the survey.

      75. http://TowerRecords.com had four of the unrated movies at its site. Of those four movies, the site indicated that two of them were unrated.

      76. http://Amazon.com advised the visitor that the movie was unrated, a Director's Cut, and/or an Unrated Director's Cut, even when the user put the item in their online shopping cart to purchase. http://Amazon.com also let the user enlarge the DVD icon picture next to the product description, so the user could see that the movie was unrated or a Director's Cut. However, the site did not give more detailed information when a user clicked on the unrated icon, such as by providing a link to http://mpaa.org or a pop-up window explaining the rating system. Additionally, there were no descriptions related to movie content. When searching http://BestBuy.com for the movie Bloodrayne, the search results included both the “NR” and “R” versions of the movie. However, when clicking on the NR version, the site brought the user to a page that listed the movie as R, even though the DVD image next to the product information said “Unrated Director's Cut.” The product description also contained “Ratings Flags” for “Sexual Situations, Nudity, Gore.” When clicking on any of those words, the user was linked to a pop-up window that contained information on MPAA ratings. However, the site did not make clear why it was linking the user to that page. If one decided to purchase the DVD, the product description in the user's cart did not state that the DVD was Unrated, or give any other indication of rating. Similar results were also found for Alexander, Basic Instinct, Crash, and The Yards. http://CircuitCity.com indicated that the viewed item was unrated and a “Director's Cut” or “Unrated Director's Cut.” There were flags in the product description that told the person more about the movie content, such as “Not For Children” or “Gore.” However, if one decided to purchase the DVD, the product description in the user's cart did not state that the DVD was Unrated, or give any other indication of rating.

      When the user searched http://SamGoody.com homepage for the movie Bloodrayne, the user was brought to a page displaying the movie's unrated version; the page displayed the letters “NR” to indicate the DVDs unrated status. If, however, the user was already in the movies subsection of the site and then searched by movie title, the user would be brought to the unrated version of the movie but the page indicated that the movie was rated R. When searching for Alexander under either method, the site brought up the Director's Cut but indicated an R rating. As with http://BestBuy.com, if one decided to purchase the DVD, the product description in the user's cart did not state that the DVD was unrated or give any other indication of rating.

      At http://TowerRecords.com, the DVD titles for Alexander, Bloodrayne, and Crash indicated that they were unrated versions. Although the page for Basic Instinct did not notify the visitor that the movie was unrated, it did note, “This product is intended for adults and may only be purchased by persons 18 years of age or older.” When purchasing Basic Instinct, the site also requested confirmation that the user was at least 18 years old. During the purchase process, the site provided unrated or Director's Cut descriptors for all of the movies.

      77. 2000 Report, supra note 1, at 20; December 2001 Report, supra note 6, at 13.

      78. Specifically, the MPAA member studios pledged to “strongly encourage theater owners and video retailers to improve compliance with the rating system.” Motion Picture Association of America, A Response to the FTC Report (Sept. 26, 2000). NATO members promised to take steps to reaffirm NATO's existing ID-check policy for R-rated films, which was announced in 1999. See National Association of Theatre Owners, Response of the National Association of Theatre Owners to the Report and Recommendations of the Federal Trade Commission (Nov. 2,2000) (on file with the Commission); comments of John Fithian, President, National Association of Theatre Owners, at Marketing Violent Entertainment to Children: A Workshop on Industry Self-Regulation (Oct. 29,2003), transcript at 176–77, available at http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/workshops/violence/index.html. The Video Software Dealers Association (“VSDA”) had an existing “Pledge to Parents” program, through which participating retailers committed, among other things, not to rent or sell R-rated movies to children under 17 without parental consent. See Statement of the VSDA, Senate Comm. on Commerce, Science and Transp. (Mar. 21, 2000) (on file with Commission staff). Finally, some studios sent letters to individual theater owners and video retailers urging them to improve compliance with the rating system by not selling tickets or granting admission to R-rated movies, or selling or renting R-rated videos or DVDs, to any persons under 17 not accompanied by a parent or adult guardian.

      79. See Addendum B for a discussion of the survey methodology and results.

      80. In addition, theaters checked the ages of the teen shoppers more often in this latest survey, rising to 56% from 48% in the 2003 survey.

      81. In all, the Commission sought information from eight retailers: Best Buy Co., Inc., Target Corporation, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., Circuit City Stores, Inc., Barnes & Noble, GameStop Corp., Trans World Entertainment Corp., and Tower Video and Records. The Commission requested information about the companies' policies affecting the sale or rental of restricted products.

      82. Letter from Crossan R. Andersen, President, Entertainment Merchants Association, to Richard F. Kelly, Senior Attorney, Federal Trade Commission, at 6 (Sept. 15, 2006) (“EMA Letter”).

      83. Id.

      84. See NATO Letter, supra note 41, at 12.

      85. Id. The Commission found examples of DVD movie packaging where studios exploit the lack of an MPAA rating to promote the movie. For example, the DVD cover art for The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning states in large type, “UNRATED: TOO SHOCKING FOR THEATERS.” The cover art for The Hills Have Eyes shows the image of a terrified woman whose face is pinned down by a partially gloved hand. Superimposed over this image is the word “UNRATED” printed in a red scrawl that simulates dripping blood; the cover also states, “THE VERSION TO DIE FOR.” The cover art for Hostel depicts a large label stating, “SICK AND TWISTED: UNRATED.” The implicit message of this packaging is that the unrated DVD version contains content that the MPAA would have rated more restrictively than the rating for the movie's theatrical version. See also Rod Gustafson, Parents Television Council, Unrated Movies Further Erode MPAA System (Feb. 16, 2006) (noting that unrated movie DVDs contain content that likely was cut to obtain a less restrictive rating for the theatrical release), available at http://www.parentstv.org/ptc/publications/rgcolumns/2006/0213.asp (last visited Mar. 27, 2007).

      86. See EMA Letter, supra note 82, at 7.

      87. Id.

      88. Id. Redbox reports that its machines are located at more than 1,400 locations nationwide. See Redbox Press Release, Redbox Launches Online Movie Rentals (Sept. 19,2006). According to the EMA, Redbox expects to grow to 2,000 locations by the end of 2006. EMA Letter, supra note 82, at 7. TNR reports that its machines are located in 600 locations, and that it plans on adding another 1,300 locations by early 2007. See TNR Press Release, TNR Entertainment Completes $45 Million Funding for Nationwide Expansion of DVD Rental Kiosks in Supermarkets (Sept. 6, 2006).

      89. See, e.g., Redbox Press Release, Redbox Announces Agreement to Install DVD Rental Kiosks in Stop & Shop and Giant Food Stores Throughout the Northeast (Jan. 25,2006) (indicating that its machines can hold up to 500 DVDs representing fifty to sixty of the newest movie releases); TNR Entertainment Corp. Press Release, TNR Entertainment Announces Agreement to Install DVD Rental Kiosks in A&P Stores Throughout the Northeast (May 1,2006) (indicating that its machines can hold up to 1,000 DVDs and up to 200 titles).

      90. See Redbox Press Release, Redbox Launches Online Movie Rentals (Sept. 19, 2006).

      91. See http://www.redbox.com/Rent/Billing.aspx (last visited Sept. 25,2006).

      92. The terms of use for the Redbox service state that the user is acknowledging that he or she is at least 18 years old and using a credit or debit card issued in his or name. See Redbox Terms of Use, available at http://www.redbox.com/Rent/Billing.aspx (last visited Sept. 25,2006). Individuals under the age of 18 may use Redbox kiosks, “but only with the permission and involvement of a parent or legal guardian.” Id.

      93. The RIAA is a trade association that represents the creators, manufacturers, and distributors of over 90% of the sound recordings produced and sold in the United States. See RIAA About Us-Who We Are, http://www.riaa.com/about/default.asp (last visited Oct. 6, 2006). The RIAA first announced its labeling system on behalf of many of its larger members in 1985. See Parents' Music Resource Center, PMRC, PTA and RIAA Agree on Recorded Lyrics Identification (Nov. 1, 1985). The two parents' groups that pushed the industry to provide information about recordings with explicit lyrics were the Parents' Music Resource Center (“PMRC”) and the National Parent Teacher Association (“NPTA”). The PMRC was founded in 1985 to promote a consumer labeling plan for music recordings that contain explicit sexual or violent references. See William Raspberry, Filth on the Air, Wash. Post, June 19, 1985, at A21.

      94. RIAA, Guidelines and Requirements Regarding Use of a Logo on Physical Products (effective Oct. 2006) (hereafter “RIAA Logo Guidelines”), available at http://www.riaa.com/issues/parents/advisory.asp#notice (last visited Mar. 27, 2007). The RIAA and the National Association of Recording Merchandisers (“NARM”), a trade association for the music retailing community, have taken steps to educate the public about this labeling program, highlighting the program on their websites and joining with other groups to promote the existence of the program in ad campaigns directed at parents. See http://www.parentalguide.org (a joint program with the movie, television, and video game industries to promote understanding of each of their rating and labeling self-regulatory programs). Recently, the RIAA created Spanish-language materials to expand the reach of its educational efforts of parents and music consumers. In addition, the RIAA has worked with the Healthy Media, Healthy Kids Coalition to provide parents with added resources to help them decide what their children watch, hear, and play. See the Coalition's website at http://www.PauseParentPlay.org.

      95. RIAA Logo Guidelines, supra note 94. If a company or an artist determines that a recording contains explicit content, the RIAA guidelines require that the company place the label on the packaging of all CDs, DVDs, Dual Discs, Enhanced CDs and such other current or future physical media in which a sound recording may be embodied. Id.

      96. Id. This change—the previous guidelines required a uniform size—was made, according to the RIAA, to give companies more flexibility in affixing the label to the different types of products that are now or will in the future be available for sale.

      97. Uniform Guidelines for Determining Whether a Sound Recording Should Use a PAL Notice (effective Oct. 2006) (hereafter “RIAA Use of PAL Guidelines”), available at http://www.riaa.eom/issues/parents/advisory.asp#notice (last visited Mar. 27,2007).

      98. See 2000 Report, supra note 1, at 23–24.

      99. Id. at 24. As one recording company explained:

      In determining whether to sticker a particular album … record labels initially examine and evaluate the use of expletives in the album. Once it is determined that the use of expletives in a song on an album warrants a sticker, the inquiry ends and the record labels do not further proceed with the inquiry with respect to the remainder of the album.

      This company also pointed out that “since the decision to sticker is made on a case-by-case basis and the basis for each decision to sticker is not memorialized, it is possible that in some cases particular individuals might exercise their editorial judgments to sticker a recording for reasons other than use of expletives” Id. at 77 n. 131.

      100. See, e.g., 2002 Report, supra note 7, at 31.

      101. Edited versions are “modified versions of the PAL content original” that do not include all of the same content contained in the original, and no longer merit a PAL notice. Nonetheless, the RIAA points out that the edited version may still contain “potentially objectionable content.” For example, “some such content might be retained in order not to compromise artistic expression.” Edited versions of a PAL recording are required to include a label stating “Edited Version,” that should be displayed in a “legible manner” on the cover artwork, or on the top spine of the cover. RIAA Logo Guidelines, supra note 94.

      102. In response to a request from Commission staff for information on the sales of edited versions of PAL recordings, the RIAA provided the results of an internal review of album shipments for the forty-two PAL recordings listed on the 2005 year-end Billboard chart that have an edited version. Nearly 42 million PAL labeled albums were shipped, along with nearly 7.7 million edited versions of such albums. See September 15,2006 letter from Mitch Bainwol, RIAA to Richard Kelly, Staff Attorney, Federal Trade Commission (on file with Commission staff).

      103. See 2004 Report, supra note 8, at 29; June 2002 Report, supra note 7, at 18; December 2001 Report, supra note 6, at 35–36.

      104. See RIAA Use of PAL Guidelines, supra note 97.

      105. In response to the Commission's “continued criticism of the recording industry for advertising to teens,” the RIAA has noted that most recordings are available in an “edited version” and that recording companies advertise these edited versions “as well as and along with” the versions carrying the parental advisory label. Letter from Hilary Rosen, President and CEO, Recording Industry Association of America, to the Honorable Timothy J. Muris, Chairman, Federal Trade Commission (Apr. 26, 2002) (on file with Commission staff). The RIAA guidelines note that “[i] f an edited version is also available for sale, consumer advertising may also contain language indicating such a version of the recording is available.” See RIAA Guidelines and Requirements Regarding PAL Notices in Consumer Advertisements (effective Oct. 2006) (“RIAA PAL Advertising Guidelines”), available at http://www.riaa.com/issues/parents/advisory.asp#notice (last visited Mar. 27, 2007).

      106. For a brief time in 2000, the RIAA had adopted a standard that would have prohibited advertising for explicit-content labeled recording in publications, websites, or other commercial outlets whose primary (i.e., 50% or more) market demographic was 16 years of age or younger. The RIAA withdrew that standard, saying it feared that the formal adoption of such a provision would only increase the likelihood that its members would be the subject of law enforcement actions and thus discourage participation in the parental advisory program. See April 2001 Report, supra note 5, at 13.

      107. Two ads were placed by UMG and one by an independent label. All three ads contained a clear and conspicuous parental advisory label.

      108. These albums were: Idlewild by Outkast, Curtain Call by Eminem, Hypnotize by System of a Down, The Dutchess by Fergie, We Don't Need to Whisper by Angels & Airwaves, Teenage Graffiti by the Pink Spiders, Good Appollo, I'm Burning Star IV, Volume One: From Fear through the Eyes of Madness by Coheed and Cambria, The Charm by Bubba Sparxxx, 4:21 by Method Man, On Top of Our Game by Dem Franchize Boyz, Fishscale by Ghostface Killah, The Sufferer and the Witness by Rise Against, In My Mind by Pharell, Second Round's on Me by Obie Trice, The Big Bang by Busta Rhymes, Sacrament by Lamb of God, Come What(ever) May by Stone Sour, Port of Miami by Rick Ross, and She Wants Revenge by She Wants Revenge. These albums were selected based on the following criteria: albums bearing a Parental Advisory Label and promoted through paid Internet advertising in 2006, according to the Nielsen//NetRatings AdRelevance database.

      109. See Addendum E, § 3, Table 5.

      110. See § II.B.3.b, supra.

      111. A marketing document boasted that the artist's MySpace page had 22,000 friends and over 330,000 songs streamed. A marketing document for another artist indicated that the band's MySpace page had over 75,000 friends and a particular video had over 1.2 million streams.

      112. Addendum D, § ILA discusses the results of the Commission's examination of twenty official music album websites regarding their practice of disclosing the Parental Advisory Label and, if applicable, restricting access to particular content based on age.

      113. The Commission is aware of at least one album that was separately promoted virally by disseminating a hyperlink to a video on YouTube. One company reported that it created a dedicated website containing audioclips from the album, “buddy icons,” and an email signup. A marketing document for that album mentioned distributing a YouTube link to the premiere of a video for a song from the album. The document went on to say that “[c]ollege reps are … using the YouTube link to spread on virally. In reference to grassroots marketing, another document said”, [I]mmediate ‘awareness’ campaign started virally with seeding online communities with the … non-censored [video] through YouTube.”

      114. See Addendum D, § III, Table 9.

      115. These street marketers were also encouraged to distribute posters, stickers, and postcards, and to throw parties on college campuses hyping the band and the album's release.

      116. The drafter of this plan, however, appeared to be especially concerned about targeting children, stating, “We will need to verify 18 years old+; we can NOT explicitly state the age requirement, otherwise we are inviting fans to simply enter an appropriate birth year.”

      117. The guidelines note that this may be achieved by using the PAL logo in the ad, or by including the words “Explicit Content—Parental Advisory,” “Explicit Content,” “Explicit,” or “Parental Advisory” in legible form and in close proximity to the title or artwork for the recording. To communicate the availability of an Edited Version of the recording, the words “Edited Version Also Available” may be included. RIAA PAL Advertising Guidelines, supra note 105. The revised RIAA guidelines, released in October 2006, extend the PAL labeling requirements to recordings distributed through a digital distribution platform. Id. This requirement applies to both albums and individual recordings on an album. RIAA Use of PAL Guidelines, supra note 97.

      118. A spot-check of explicit-content labeled recordings showed that the enhanced label is being placed on certain Sony BMG recordings. In addition, the Commission found that the additional descriptive information for certain recordings was also displayed by some online retailers as part of the cover art.

      119. For this Report, the Commission reviewed magazine issues between September 2005 and August 2006.

      120. The websites reviewed were: http://www.beenieman.net, http://www.buckcherry.com, http://www.bustarhymes.com, http://www.dmx-official.com, http://www.e-40.com, http://www.icecube.com, http://www.kelisonline.com, http://www.lamb-of-god.com/sacrament, http://www.method-man.com, http://www.obietrice.com, http://www.pharrellwilliams.com, http://www.defjam.com/site/artist_home.php?artist_id=607, http://www.shallowbay.com, http://www.slayer.net, http://www.stone-sour.com, http://www.trapmuzik.com, http://www.theroots.com, http://www.tooshortworld.com, http://www.young-dro.com, and http://www.yungjoc.com. These websites were selected based on the following criteria: the artist had an album ranked on the Billboard 200 list for the week ending September 16, 2006; the album was released in 2006 and bore a Parental Advisory Label; and the artist's or record label's website was actively promoting the album.

      121. See 2004 Report, supra note 8, at 15.

      122. For the 2004 Report, the PAL logo or other advisory language about the explicit content of the recording was visible sometime during the search or purchase process for about 67% (ten of fifteen) of the websites. Id.

      123. The Commission reviewed five music retailer sites: http://Amazon.com, http://BestBuy.com, http://CircuitCity.com, http://Samgoody.com, and TowerRecords. com. The recordings examined at these retailers' websites were Future Sex/Love Sounds by Justin Timberlake, Game Theory by The Roots, Extreme Behavior by Hinder, Dutchess by Fergie, and Phobia by Breaking Benjamin. These albums were the top five selling albums with a Parental Advisory Label on http://Amazon.com as of September 14, 2006. Language used by the websites to describe the albums' content included: “Explicit Lyrics,” “Parental Advisory,” and “Explicit Content.” http://BestBuy.com, http://SamGoody.com, and http://TowerRecords.com consistently provided advisory language throughout the purchase process. Many of the websites also provided non-explicit, i.e., “edited” or “clean” versions of the albums sold.

      124. At http://Amazon.com one could click on the album image to enlarge the picture and make the PAL logo readable.

      125. BestBuy's website noted whether an album had a PAL or not on the album's product information page. If it did, it would say “Yes” next to the words “Parental Advisory.” If the user clicked on the words, it would direct the user to a pop-up box with more information regarding the PAL system.

      126. The Commission reviewed these online music downloading websites for their disclosure practices regarding five tracks from albums bearing a PAL. The music tracks examined at these online music download websites were SexyBack by Justin Timberlake, London Bridge by Fergie, Lips Of An Angel by Hinder, Pullin Me Back by Chingy Featuring Tyrese, and Money Maker by Ludacris Featuring Pharrell.

      127. See Addendum B.

      128. See ESRB, Game Ratings and Descriptor Guide, http://www.esrb.org/ratings/ratings_guide.jsp (last visited Mar. 28, 2007).

      129. See Entertainment Software Association (“ESA”), Essential Facts about the Computer and Video Game Industry, at 4 (2006) (citing The NPD Group), available at http://www.theesa.com/archives/files/Essential%20Facts%202006.pdf (last visited Nov. 16, 2006). Another source reports that M-rated video game sales have accounted for as much as one-third of all video game sales in a given year. See http://www.iccr.org/issues/violence/featured.php (last visited Nov. 16, 2006). See also Micahel Felberbaum, Parents Search for Family-Friendly Games, USA Today (Jan. 11, 2005) (“Data analyzed by GamerMetrics and http://IGN.com show that 46% of all games sold in 2004 were rated ‘E,’ while ‘T’ and ‘M’ sales accounted for 54% of overall sales.”), available at http://www.usatoday.com/tech/products/games/2005-01-ll-family-gaming_x.htm (last visited Oct. 26,2006).

      130. Principles and Guidelines for Responsible Advertising Practices & Advertising Code of Conduct for the Entertainment Software Industry (“Ad Code”) (as amended April 1,2006) at 11, 32 (on file with Commission staff).

      131. See ESRB Press Release, New Video Game Rating Category, “E10+,” Added to ESRB Rating System (Mar. 2,2005), available at http://www.esrb.org/about/news/E10Release_3_2_05.pdf (last visited Oct. 2,2006).

      132. Game raters are recruited from the New York City area. They are all adults, at least 18, and are not necessarily gamers. Typically, they may have some experience with children and have no ties to the entertainment software industry. They are specially trained by the ESRB and work on a part-time basis, attending no more than one two- to three-hour rating session per week. See Testimony of Patricia Vance, President, ESRB before the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary, Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Property Rights at 3 (Mar. 29, 2006).

      133. See ESRB, Ratings Process, http://www.esrb.org/ratings/ratings_process.jsp (last visited Oct. 26, 2006).

      134. For advertisements that are placed before the ESRB has assigned a rating, the Ad Code requires companies to use their best efforts to place ads in media with “an audience that is appropriate for the content within the title. Such efforts should be based on the company's good faith effort and reasonable expectations regarding the anticipated rating.” See Ad Code, supra note 130, at 35.

      135. This was a major concern for some industry critics in connection with the pre-sale of the game Bully, although ultimately ESRB rated this game T, instead of the M rating that some critics had expected.

      136. The rating icon must be on the package front; the content descriptors are placed on the back of packaging next to the rating icon. Ad Code, supra note 130, at 11–12.

      137. Id. The ESRB has informed Commission staff that it does not play through every game following its release. Instead, it plays the final version of a small percentage of games, randomly selected, as well as a number of hand-selected titles. Each review takes about four hours. Telephone Conversation between ESRB President Patricia E. Vance and Commission staff (Oct. 13, 2006). The ESRB has advised Commission staff that it will be changing its post-release testing regimen and will start reviewing a greater number of games in the near future.

      138. Proposed Congressional legislation introduced in the 109th Congress would have required the ESRB to review all of the content of a game before issuing a rating. These bills, among other things, would have required the FTC either to enact rules or to enforce provisions that would require the ESRB to review all the content of a game before issuing a rating. In addition, provisions in one or more of these bills would penalize companies who fail to provide the ESRB with all of the content of their games. The Commission has not expressed views on the merits or constitutionality of these bills. See Truth in Video Game Rating Act, H.R. 5912, 109th Cong. (2006), available at http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=109_cong_bills&docid=f:h5912ih.txt.pdf (last visited Oct. 27, 2006); Truth in Video Game Rating Act, S. 3935 109th Cong. (2006), available at http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=109congbills&docid=f:s3935is.txt.pdf (last visited Oct. 27, 2006); Video Game Decency Act of 1006, H.R.6120, 109th Cong. (2006), available at http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=109_cong_bills&docid=f:h6120ih.txt.pdf. (last visited Oct. 27, 2006).

      139. The ESRB took this step in response to the Hot Coffee controversy, where sexually explicit scenes that the game developer had removed from normal game play subsequently became accessible when a third party hacked into the game software, created a program called “Hot Coffee” that would render this content playable if downloaded by players of the game's PC version, and then disseminated this program on the Internet. See ESRB Press Release, ESRB Concludes Investigation into Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, Revokes Mature (M) Rating (July 20,2005), available at http://www.esrb.org/about/news/7202005.jsp (last visited Mar. 27,2007). For details of the Commission's investigation and subsequent action in response to the game developer's and publisher's allegedly deceptive marketing of this game, see Makers of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas Settle FTC Charges (June 8,2006), available at http://www.ftc.gov/opa/2006/06/grandtheftauto.htm.

      140. Kimberly M. Thompson, Karen Tepichin & Kevin Haninger, Content and Ratings of Mature-Rated Video Games, 160 Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Med. 402–10 (Apr. 2006) (hereafter “Mature-Rated Video Games”); Kevin Haninger & Kimberly M. Thompson, Content and Ratings of Teen-Rated Video Games, 291 /. Am. Med. Ass'n 856–65 (2004) (hereafter “Teen-Rated Video Games”); and Kimberly M. Thompson & Kevin Haninger, Violence in E-rated Video Games, 286/. Am. Med. Ass'n 591–98 (2001) (hereafter “E-Rated Video Games”).

      141. For purposes of the study, violence was defined “as acts in which the aggressor causes or attempts to cause physical injury or death to another character.” Id. at 593.

      142. See ESRB Press Release, Statement by ESRB President Patricia E. Vance in Response to the Release of a Harvard School of Public Health Study (Apr. 3,2006) at http://www.esrb.org/about/news/downloads/Response_to_Harvard_M_games_4.3.06.pdf (last visited Oct. 26, 2006).

      143. Id.

      144. See Game Ratings & Descriptors Guide, http://www.esrb.org/ratings/ratings_guide.jsp (last visited Oct. 26,2006).

      145. See Letter from Patricia Vance, President, ESRB, to Richard F. Kelly, Staff Attorney, Federal Trade Commission (Aug. 28, 2006) (“Vance Letter”) at 7 (on file with the Commission).

      146. Written Testimony of Patricia Vance, President, ESRB, Hearing before the U.S. House of Representatives Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade and Consumer Protection at 4 (July 14, 2006), available at http://www.esrb.org/about/news/downloads/pvtestimony_6_14_06.pdf (last visited Mar. 27,2007).

      147. See Chris Fusco, Boy, 15, Has No Trouble Buying Violent, M-Rated Video Games, Chicago Sun-Times (Jan. 3, 2005), available at http://www.safegamesillinois.org/media/releases/Chicago%20Sun%20Times%201_3_05.pdf (last visited Mar. 28, 2007).

      148. See National Institute on Media and the Family, 10th Annual MediaWise Video and Computer Game Report Card (Nov. 29,2005), available at http://www.mediafamily.org/research/report_vgrc_2005.shtml (last visited Oct. 26,2006). Because twelfth grade students were included in the survey, it is likely that some of the students who used M-rated games were 17 or older.

      149. See, e.g., 2004 Report, supra note 8, Appendix A, at 4. It is unclear how an industry's self-regulatory system would be funded other than through industry sources.

      150. See ESRB Press Release, Comments on MediaWise Video Game Report Card 2005, http://www.esrb.org/about/news/downloads/nimf_fail.pdf (last visited Oct. 26,2006).

      151. 2000 Report, supra note 1, at 45.

      152. Ad Code, supra note 130, at 32, 39,42.

      153. ESRB, Safe Harbor Modification to TV Marketing Guidelines for Mature-Rated Games (Oct. 2005) (on file with Commission staff).

      154. Ad Code, supra note 130, at 10.

      155. Technical violations include the display of an incorrectly sized rating icon or content descriptors on product packaging or in advertising.

      156. Vance Letter, supra note 145, at Attachment O. Fines were imposed for several different types of rules violations, including the submission of incomplete or inaccurate content during the rating submission process and inappropriate target marketing. Id.

      157. Many of the popular cable music programs, such as BET's 106th & Park, and MTV's Total Request Live do appear to exceed that threshold.

      158. See, e.g., 2004 Report, supra note 8, at 21–22.

      159. In issues reviewed from September 2005 through July 2006, thirty-one ads for T-rated games appeared in Nintendo Power.

      160. In fact, the ESRB has indicated that, based on the demographic information on their readership, none of the game enthusiast magazines are off-limits for T-rated game ads. Vance Letter, supra note 145, at 7.

      Though game companies continue to widely promote and market their games through game enthusiast magazines, industry is shifting some of its ad dollars away from magazines and to the Internet. Advertising Age magazine reports that video game advertisers have cut their magazine spending by 37% since 2002, while increasing their web spending by 174% during the same time period. Teen Mags? So Five Years Ago. Advertisers Enamored with Web, Niche Channels. Advertising Age, Aug. 1, 2006. Spending on magazines dropped from $46.1 million in 2002 to $28.8 million in 2005. Web spending increased from $4.6 million in 2002 to $12.6 million in 2005.

      161. The Bioncle Heroes ad appearing in Sports Illustrated for Kids displayed an RP (Rating Pending) icon.

      162. The games examined for paid Internet ad placements were: 50 Cent: Bulletproof, Brothers in Arms: Road to Hill 30, Condemned: Criminal Origins, Dead Rising, Devil May Cry 3: Special Edition Greatest Hits, Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, Far Cry Instincts Predator, Final Fight: Streetwise, The Godfather, Hitman: Blood Money, Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks, Onimusha: Dawn of Dreams, The Outfit, Prey, Resident Evil 4, Saint's Row, Scarface, Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell Chaos Theory, Prince of Persia: The Two Thrones, Full Spectrum Warrior: Ten Hammers, and Drakengard 2.

      163. See Addendum E, § 3, Table 5.

      164. The Commission also examined a different sample of twenty games consisting of the most frequently advertised M-rated games on the Internet between October 2005 and September 2006, as measured by the number of impressions generated by the ads. (The term “impressions” refers to the number of times an ad is displayed to a website visitor.) Ads for eighteen of these twenty games ran on sites with audiences of at least 45% children under the age of 17. These sites accounted for approximately 10% of the total advertising impressions generated by the twenty M-rated games.

      165. See Ad Code, supra note 130, at 10.

      166. According to its website, FanPimp is now known as Affinitive, and provides technology and marketing solutions to cultivate long-lasting loyalty and awareness with consumers through word-of-mouth marketing. See http://www.beaffinitive.com/about/ (last visited Oct. 12,2006).

      167. In the past, some game publishers have exceeded the ESRB requirements to include content descriptors in television ads. In previous reports, the Commission has noted that, according to the ESA, it has not imposed such a requirement for television because the descriptors can be difficult to read on a television screen and because it does not believe that descriptors can be displayed in a 30-second ad in a way that permits viewers to absorb the information. See 2002 Report at 22 n.95.

      168. There were a few instances of advertisements containing multiple games in which no icon appeared in the ad. These ads appeared in the August 1,2005 issue of Official Xbox Magazine, the July 28 and August 11,2005 editions of Rolling Stone, and the September 2005 issue of Game Pro. The Commission reviewed television ads placed in the first six months of 2006, and print magazines published from August 2005 through September 2006.

      169. The Commission examined the following twenty electronic game websites: 50 Cent: Bulletproof Brothers in Arms: Road to Hill 30, Condemned: Criminal Origins, Darkwatch, Dead Rising, Devil May Cry 3: Special Edition Greatest Hits, Elder Scrolls IV Oblivion, Far Cry Instincts Predator, Final Fight: Streetwise, God of War, Godfather, Hitman Blood Money, Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks, Onimusha: Dawn of Dreams, Outfit, Prey, Resident Evil 4, Saint's Row, Scarface, and Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell Chaos Theory. Each of the games selected was released in 2006 with an M rating and a violence descriptor.

      170. In the 2004 Report, 75% of the websites displayed the ESRB rating icon somewhere on the site. In this surf, 75% (15 of 20) required the visitor to scroll down the screen to view the rating, as did 80% (16 of 20) for the descriptor. Thirteen of the sites had a demo available either to view or to play, but only 54% (7 of 13) of the demos displayed the rating, and only 31% (4 of 13) displayed the content descriptors. The websites for 50 Cent: Bulletproof, Condemned: Criminal Origins, Elder Scrolls IV Oblivion, and Final Fight: Streetwise all provided demos with both the rating icon and descriptor.

      171. The Commission reviewed five retailer websites—http://Amazon.com, http://BestBuy.com, http://CircuitCity.com, http://EBGames.com, and http://GameStop.com—to see if they included rating information for five M-rated games. The games surveyed at these five sites were Condemned Criminal Origins, Dead Rising, God of War, Halo 2, and Saint's Row.

      172. See Major Retailers Announce New Campaign to Enforce Video Game Rating System, available at http://releases.usnewswire.com/GetRelease.asp?id=24172 (last visited Oct. 26, 2006). IEMA members included: Best Buy, Blockbuster Entertainment, Circuit City, CompUSA, Gamesource, Electronics Boutique, Hastings Entertainment, Hollywood Video, KB Toys, Kmart, Meijer, Movie Gallery, Musicland, Shopko Stores, Target, Toys “R” Us, Transworld Entertainment and Wal-Mart. Taken together, these retailers sell approximately 85% of all computer and video games sold in the United States.

      173. Since the Commission's last report, national video game retailers have taken a number of steps to both adopt and enforce policies to prevent the sale of M-rated video games to minors. For a comprehensive review of those efforts, see two reports of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (“ICCR”), Retailers and Violent Video Games, Progress Made but Disclosure Needed (Dec. 11, 2006), available at http://www.iccr.org/issues/violence/retailercomparisonchartl20606.pdf and Retail Guidelines for the Sale of Violent Video Games (Dec. 13, 2005) available at http://www.iccr.org/issues/violence/videogameretailgdlinesl21305.pdf. (last visited Dec. 11, 2006). The ICCR, a coalition of 275 faith-based institutional investors, has been documenting steps taken by video game retailers to prevent the sale of such games to those under 17.

      174. Council members include Best Buy, Blockbuster Entertainment, Circuit City, Game Stop, Movie Gallery/Hollywood Video/Game Crazy, Target, and Wal-Mart.

      175. See Fax from the ESRB to Commission Staff (Nov. 21, 2006) (on file with Commission staff).

      176. Cingular has a wireless Internet access service called MEdia Net that allows its users to download games, surf websites, and check email. MEdia Net provides the option of setting up Parental Controls on a child's phone to restrict access to websites containing mature content and to restrict purchase of downloads such as games, ringtones, and graphics.

      Alltel gives a parent the option to place restrictions on a child's phone by calling Alltel and asking to disallow “access to applications.”

      Sprint PCS Vision Phone SCP-2400 by Sanyo has a built-in Parental Control that includes restricting access to Sprint services such as downloading mobile games. Sprint also offers a Restricted/Unrestricted Web Access feature that allows primary account holders to manage access to the open Internet for all plans on the account. T-Mobile has a phone plan entitled “Kids Connect,” which allows a parent to restrict the child from downloading anything onto the phone. Verizon's LG Migo offers parents a “kid-friendly” phone that does not provide any capabilities for downloading games or web browsing.

      177. Verizon's website had mobile games for Elder Scrolls IV Oblivion, Prince of Persia: Two Thrones, True Crime: Streets of L.A., Brothers in Arms: Earned in Blood, and SOCOM: U.S. Navy Seals. Sprint's website had mobile games for 24, Brothers in Arms: Earned in Blood, Prince of Persia: Two Thrones, True Crime: Streets of L.A., and SOCOM: U.S. Navy Seals. Cingular's website had mobile games for Jaws, Elder Scrolls IV Oblivion, Scarface, SOCOM: U.S. Navy Seals, Brother in Arms: Earned in Blood. All of these games have M-rated versions on consoles such as PlayStation 2 & 3, Xbox and Xbox 360, GameCube, Windows PC, and PlayStation Portable (“PSP”).

      178. Although a game on Sprint's website, Mafia Wars, did not have an official ESRB rating on another game console, the description for the game read, “Earn the respect of New York's top crime family by doing their dirty work, with your machine gun.” On Verizon's website, the game Brothers in Arms: Earned in Blood, had a description that read, “Take the fight to the enemy on the beaches and hills of Normandy, battle-ravaged Northern African towns, and deep into German territory inside an immense German castle headquarters stocked with all the luxurious spoils of war. You and your brothers will push back the enemy with rifles, grenades, machine guns, flamethrowers, bazookas, even tanks. Based on Ubisoft's Xbox/PS2 game.” On Cingular's website, the description for Scarface: The Rise of Tony Montana reads, “Rule the Miami streets as a brutal crime lord! Rub out your enemies and climb to the top through driving and shooting missions. Bury those cockaroaches [sic] in Shooting Mode with a shotgun, chainsaw, M16 or Uzi!” Games that were available for purchase at more than one of the mobile phone websites had identical descriptions on these sites. Sprint's site provided users with demos of some of its games, including SOCOM: U.S. Navy Seals, which involved shooting and killing opponents.

      179. http://Verizon.com promoted Defjam Fight for NY (T-rated). http://Cingular.com and http://Sprint.com promoted The Sims 2 (T-rated).

      180. See Wireless Content Guidelines and Wireless Content Guidelines Classification Criteria at http://www.ctia.org.

      181. A description of the system is set forth in a PowerPoint presentation by Mark Desautels, Vice President—Wireless Internet Development, CTIA CTIA's Wireless Internet Caucus, FTC Briefing, The State of Mobile Content (Oct. 26, 2005) (on file with Commission staff). Unedited or complete versions of content with the following ratings are restricted content: MPAA-R, MPAA-NC 17, Movies Unrated, TV-MA, TV-Adult or Unrated Adult, ESRB-M, ESRB-AO. Any material that has been edited from content previously rated by the MPAA, TV networks, or ESRB—or material previously unrated by these same entities—is generally considered restricted content if it contains any of the following “Restricted Content Identifiers”: intense profanity, intense violence, graphic sexual activity or sexual behaviors, nudity, hate speech, graphic depiction of illegal drug use. Any applications or services offering activities that are restricted by law to those 18 years of age and older, such as gambling and lotteries, are restricted content. Any applications or services offering adult-oriented, text-based entertainment services are restricted content.

      182. See id. Any content from material with the following ratings is generally accessible content: TV-Y, TV-Y7, TV-G, TV-PG, TV-14, Edited TV-MA (without Restricted Content Identifiers) MOVIE-G, MOVIE-PG, MOVIE-PG13 with no nudity, Edited Movie-R (without Restricted Content Identifiers), ESRB-EC, ESRB-E, ESRB-10+, ESRB-T, ESRB-M (without Restricted Content Identifiers). Any material that has been edited from content previously rated by the MPAA, TV networks, or ESRB—or material previously unrated by these same entities—is generally accessible content if it does not contain any of the following Restricted Content Identifiers: Intense profanity, Intense violence, Graphic sexual activity or sexual behaviors, Nudity, Hate speech, Graphic depiction of illegal drug use.

      183. See Email from Mark Desautels, Vice President, Wireless Internet Development, CTIA, to Keith R. Fentonmiller, Staff Attorney, Federal Trade Commission (Oct. 19,2006) (on file with Commission staff).

      184. A practice of playing through the entire game likely would not have prevented the ESRB from re-rating Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas due to the undisclosed “Hot Coffee” content on the game disc. See supra note 139. That content was rendered playable only by downloading and installing a program developed and disseminated by a hacker after the game's rating and release. See id. In general, software modifications or “mods” add content to a game, ranging from simple additions like a different color car used in a street scene, to superimposing new textures or skins on a figure in a game. Many mods would likely be of little concern to parents, but others add nudity or enhance the violence or depictions of blood in a game. The “Hot Coffee” program was atypical for a mod because it unlocked content already on the game disc, rather than importing content from outside the game software. In light of the easy availability of “mods,” and their potential to change significantly the game play experience, the Commission, in July 2005, issued a Consumer Alert on the video game rating system that highlights for parents the fact that content can be downloaded from the Internet that has not been evaluated by the ESRB and may make a game's content more explicit than the rating indicates. See FTC Consumer Alert: Video Games: Reading the Ratings on Games People Play (July 2005), available at http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/conline/pubs/alerts/videoalrt.htm.

      185. See 2000 Report, Appendix F, supra note 3. Appendix F also contains a detailed discussion of the underlying methodology and findings.

      186. For information on the two most recent ESRB awareness and use studies, see ESRB Press Release, Awareness, Use and Trust of ESRB Video Game Ratings Reach Historical High-Point Among Parents (Mar. 29, 2006), available at http://www.esrb.org/about/news/03292006.jsp (last visited Mar. 27,2007); ESRB Press Release, Majority of Parents Say They Limit Children s Access to Mature-Rated Video Games (May 5, 2005), available at http://www.esrb.org/about/news/awareness_use_5_5_05.pdf. (last visited Mar. 27, 2007).

      187. For additional information about some of the prior studies, see ESRB Press Release, New Study Shows Parents Overwhelmingly Agree with ESRB Video Game Ratings (Nov. 14, 2005), available at http://www.esrb.org/about/news/validity_study_1105.pdf (last visited Mar. 27, 2007); ESRB Press Release, New Study Shows Parents Overwhelmingly Agree with Video Game Ratings (Nov. 22, 2004), available at http://www.esrb.org/about/news/downloads/validity_study_ll_22_04.pdf (last visited Mar. 27, 2007); ESRB Press Release, Study Shows Parents Approve of Game Ratings (Dec. 5, 2003) (on file with Commission staff). The validity studies involved a mall-intercept of 400 parents at ten locations nationwide; the parents had children 3 to 17 years old who play video games. After parents were shown one- to two-minute video game clips from 8 out of 80 randomly selected games, they assigned what they believed would be appropriate ESRB ratings to the games. Those ratings were compared to the actual ESRB ratings, and parents were then asked whether the actual ratings were “about right,” “too strict,” or “too lenient.” See, e.g., Nov. 14, 2005 ESRB Press Release, supra. The brevity of these clips may limit the probative value of the results because many games can take numerous hours to complete. Moreover, it is unknown whether the content selected for these brief video clips fully represented the range and frequency of content that caused the ESRB raters—whose raters view about forty-five minutes of game play before assigning the game a particular rating—to assign the particular rating.

      188. Seventy-one percent of surveyed parents had children currently living at home, with an unknown percentage of children who played video games.

      189. The ESRB has argued that the NIMF's analysis was unscientific because it compared so few games from each era and because the games that were compared were “completely different.” ESRB Press Release, ESRB Flunks National Institute for Media and the Family for Its Disservice to Parents and Their Children (Dec. 6,2005), available at http://www.esrb.org/about/news/12062005.jsp (last visited Oct. 26, 2006).

      190. The ESRB disagrees that it has been reluctant to issue AO ratings. According to the ESRB, “[t]he reality is that publishers understand that retailers largely choose not to stock AO-rated games, and so in the interests of producing marketable games, publishers will oftentimes revise and resubmit a game that was initially assigned an AO by raters in an effort to produce an M-rated game.” ESRB Press Release, ESRB Statement Regarding Mediawise Video Game Report Card at 2 (Nov. 29, 2005), available at http://www.esrb.org/about/news/11292005.jsp (last visited Mar. 27, 2007). The ESRB also pointed out that the number of M-ratings has continued to increase each year, as have the assignment of content descriptors for violence, sexual content, and language. ESRB Press Release (Dec. 6, 2005), supra note 189. Last, ESRB asserted that NIMF's game ratings have agreed with ESRB ratings 80% of the time. Id.

      191. The National Institute on Media and the Family, 11th Annual Video Game Report Card at 6 (Nov. 28,2006), available at http://www.mediafamily.org/research/2006_Video_Game_Report_Card.pdf (last visited Dec. 1, 2006).

      192. The first survey was a school-based survey of over 1,200 seventh and eighth graders; the second was a mail-in survey of 500 parents and adolescents.

      193. In the past few years, Congress, state legislatures, and consumer groups have increasingly raised concerns about children's access to certain violent video games. As games become more realistic, so can the violent and sexual content in those games get more explicit. Six state legislatures have passed laws attempting to restrict the sale of violent video games to minors (all have been enjoined as unconstitutional). See Addendum A. Some consumer advocates have called for a complete overhaul in the ESRB system, while others have called for greater transparency in the rating process. Legislation has been introduced in Congress that would change the rating process. See id.

      194. Among those parents who said they are aware of and at least slightly familiar with the rating system, 84% said the rating system provides the age group for which the game may be appropriate, and 86% said the system provides a description of the content that may be of concern (“content descriptors”). Overall, 75% of parents familiar with the system correctly indicated that the system provides both an age rating and content descriptors.

      195. With aided recall, 45% of parents familiar with the system claimed to have heard of the AO (“Adults Only”) rating, 93% had heard of the M (“Mature”) rating, 88% had heard of the T (“Teen”) rating, 89% had heard of the E (“Everyone”) rating, 31% had heard of the EC (“Early Childhood”) rating, 32% had heard of the E10+ (“Everyone 10 and Older”) rating, and 28% had heard of the RP (“Rating Pending”) rating. The relatively low familiarity with the E10+ rating was not surprising, given that the ESRB recently added this rating. See ESRB Press Release (Mar. 2, 2005), supra note 131.

      196. When asked, unaided, where content descriptors are found, only 43% of parents claiming at least slight familiarity with content descriptors indicated that the descriptors are found “on the back,” “on the back of the box,” or “on the back of the game.” Another 26% said that the descriptors could be found on the game package, but did not indicate the front or the back.

      197. Parents offered several explanations why they use the ESRB ratings either sometimes, rarely, or never. Some said they do not use the rating because they preview the game themselves or monitor the child's play. Others said that they focus on the content of the game, looking for whether the game contains violent content. Still others said that the rating is not an issue given the small number of games they buy or rent, their child's preferences, or because they trust their child to exercise his or her own judgment in selecting appropriate games. A very small number (8 parents) indicated that they had no faith in the rating system.

      198. In 2000, fifty-five out of 252 parents claimed to be familiar with the ESRB system and use the rating most or all the time when their child wants to play a game.

      199. Parents gave several reasons for using the content descriptors only sometimes or rarely, or never, such as that they preview the game or monitor their children's game play, they rely on the game rating, the child plays games that are not violent, and the parent trusts the child to choose appropriate games.

      200. Parents who sometimes allow their children to play M-rated games report using the ESRB system far more (82%) than parents who generally allow their children to play such games (36%). Likewise, parents who sometimes allow their children to play T-rated games report using the system more (91%) than parents who generally allow their children to play such games (76%).

      201. The base for the reported data are parents whose children play video games.

      202. When asked to identify the last video game parents told them they could not play, 48% of children of restrictive parents reported an M-rated game, with 24% identifying a title from the Grand Theft Auto series. Parents reported similar data. Of the parents who reported they restrict their child's game play, 64% said that they had told their child that he or she could not play a particular video game. Thirty-five percent of parents identified an M-rated game, with 19% identifying the game as a Grand Theft Auto title. According to the children, reasons for their parents' most recent refusal to let them play a particular video game included, in descending order of emphasis, violence (41%), profanity (23%), killing (19%), blood and gore (17%), and sexual content (14%). Parents most frequently identified violence as the basis for their most recent refusal (56%), followed by profanity, sexual content, age inappropriateness, and killing.

      203. More than half (65%) of these parents stated that they have encountered an M-rated game that they will not let their child play because they believe it has content that only adults should play. Forty-four percent of those parents were able to identify the M-rated game by name; eight out often of the M-rated games identified were a title from the Grand Theft Auto series. Forty-four percent of those parents could not name the game. Ten percent of the game titles could not definitively be assigned to a particular rating, and 1% of these parents named a T-rated game. The “adult content” that parents identified included violence, sexual content, profanity, blood and gore, misogy-nistic content, and criminal content.

      204. Despite many parents' flexible attitude toward M-rated games, only 7% of all parents named an M-rated game as one of their child's favorites; 16% of parents who allow their child to play M-rated games named an M-rated game as a favorite. Overall, 29% of the boys and 10% of the girls identified at least one M-rated game as a favorite. Over four in ten (42%) children ages 14 to 16 named an M-rated game as a favorite, compared to 24% of the children ages 11 to 13.

      205. Not surprisingly, parents' attitudes were more liberal toward T-rated games than M-rated games. Although only 16% of all parents identified a T-rated game as one of their child's favorites, nearly eight out often (79%) parents familiar with the ESRB system either sometimes or generally permit their child to play T-rated games. In particular, 58% of parents familiar with the ESRB system and also have a child between 8 and 10 years old reported that they sometimes or generally permit their child to play T-rated games. Children familiar with the rating system reported an even higher level of parental permissiveness toward T-rated games (92% sometimes or generally permitted to play). Moreover, 79% of children familiar with the system and between the ages of 8 and 10 reported that their parents sometimes or generally allow them to play T-rated games.

      206. Unless otherwise specified, the bases for the reported data are parents whose children play video games and children who reported playing video games in the last year.

      207. Of children who named a favorite game.

      208. Of parents who claimed to be familiar with the video game rating system.

      209. Of children who claimed to be aware of the video game rating system.

      210. Five percent of parents generally allow, and 41% sometimes allow, their children to play M-rated games.

      211. When asked where they look or go for information about a video game to help them decide whether their child can play the game, parents pointed to a variety of sources, including testing the game by renting it before buying it, watching or playing the game with the child, and reading newspaper or online reviews.

      212. The extent to which parents play a watchdog role in the selection and purchase of video games relates to the age of the child. Fifty-seven percent of children age 14 or older said that they alone decide which games to buy or rent, versus only 16% of children under age 14. An increased likelihood of parental involvement based on younger age was evident in the parent survey as well. Twenty-five percent of parents of older children claimed to let them decide which games to play, versus 8% of parents of younger children; most parents of older children also claimed to be familiar (74%) and satisfied (85%) with the ESRB system.

      213. Note, however, that parents may have more control over children's purchases or rentals at retail stores than other ways that children obtain games. While 88% of children say they buy games at the store and 27% say they rent games, 34% borrow games and 21% buy, play, or download games online.

      214. The bases for the reported data are parents whose children play video games and children who reported playing video games in the last year.

      215. A recent Los Angeles Times/Bloombergpoll reported that 63% of 12- to 17-year-olds said that their parents know the contents of the video games they play, including 83% of young teenage boys, 72% of older teenage boys, 58% of young teenage girls, and 41% of older teenage girls. See Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg, Computers, Cell Phones and Multitasking: A Look Inside the Entertainment Life of 12–24 Year Olds at 3 (Summer 2006), available at http://www.latimes.com/media/acrobat/2006-08/24767411.pdf (last visited Mar. 27, 2007).

      216. Thirty-one percent (102 out of 329) of parents who generally or sometimes allow their children between ages 14 and 16 to play T-rated games (which the rating indicates may have content suitable for ages 13 and older) claimed that they had encountered a T-rated game that they would not allow their child to play until he or she was older. Although this result could be interpreted to suggest that many parents have encountered a T-rated game that they believe the ESRB should have rated more restrictively, it is unclear whether parents reliably recalled the ratings of the games upon which their responses were based. Sixty-seven percent of those parents could not identify the T-rated game by name, whereas only 7% did. Another 11% identified an M-rated game by name, and another 16% provided titles that could not definitively be assigned to a particular rating category.

      217. Similarly, more parents of younger children (68%) stated that they agree with ESRB ratings at least most of the time, compared to parents of older children (57%).

      218. The bases for the reported data are parents whose children play video games and who are at least slightly familiar with the video game rating system.

      219. See, e.g., 2002 Report, supra note 7, at 30.

      220. The electronic game industry has questioned the practicality of a guideline that relies on multiple factors to limit ad placements for M-rated games. Nevertheless, the ESRB has adopted a multi-factorial approach in evaluating target marketing for T-rated games. See supra note 154 and accompanying text. Given that all three industries continue to place ads for violent entertainment products in media popular with teens, additional thought and discussion by the industries about how to lessen these placements would be constructive.

      Addendum A: The First Amendment and Government Efforts to Regulate Entertainment Media Products with Violent Content

      Appendix C of the 2000 Report1 broadly analyzed the First Amendment issues relevant to any government efforts to regulate the marketing to children of entertainment media products with violent content. Since 2000, several federal courts have struck down, on constitutional grounds, legislative efforts to restrict the access of minors to violent video games or to impose mandatory rating or labeling systems for these products.

      A. Restriction on Access to Violent Video Games

      State and local legislative efforts to restrict the access of minors to certain video games with violent content have been struck down by two circuits2 and six district courts.3 In American Amusement Machine Ass'n v. Kendrick, for example, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit enjoined enforcement of an Indianapolis ordinance that prohibited operators of video game arcades from allowing access by minors—unaccompanied by a parent or guardian—to machines offering games deemed “harmful to minors” by virtue of “graphic violence” or “strong sexual content.”4 Only the “graphic violence” aspect of the ordinance was at issue because the plaintiffs did not manufacture or exhibit in public places video games with “strong sexual content.”5 The court, noting that the ordinance attempted to “squeeze the provision on violence into a familiar legal pigeonhole, that of obscenity, which is … not protected by the First Amendment,”6 concluded that while graphic images of sexual conduct historically have been placed outside the bounds of First Amendment protection, graphic images of violence have not. In fact, said the court, such images are part of a literary tradition that has been accorded full protection7 and are fully consistent with the general prevalence of violence in children's literature.8

      The Kendrick court found an essential difference between obscenity and speech containing violent images or descriptions. The proscription against obscenity is based upon “proof that it violates community norms regarding the permissible scope of depictions of sexual or sex-related activity” not upon “proof that it is likely to affect anyone's conduct.”9 The basis for the Indianapolis ordinance, on the other hand, was “belief that violent video games cause temporal harm by engendering aggressive attitudes and behavior, which might lead to violence.”10 The limited social science evidence in the record, however, failed to provide compelling evidence of harm either to children viewing the games or to potential victims of aggressive behavior.11 As a basis for enacting the ordinance, the city had relied primarily upon “a pair of empirical studies by psychologists which found that playing a violent video game tends to make young persons more aggressive in their attitudes and behavior.”12 The court concluded that the studies did not support the ordinance:

      There is no indication that the games used in the studies are similar to those in the record of this case or to other games likely to be marketed in game arcades in Indianapolis. The studies do not find that video games have ever caused anyone to commit a violent act, as opposed to feeling aggressive, or have caused the average level of violence to increase anywhere. And they do not suggest that it is the interactive character of the games, as opposed to the violence of the images in them, that is the cause of the aggressive feelings. The studies thus are not evidence that violent video games are any more harmful to the consumer or to the public safety than violent movies or other violent, but passive, entertainments.13

      The court noted the under-inclusive nature of the ordinance: “Violent video games played in public places are a tiny fraction of the media violence to which modern American children are exposed. Tiny—and judging from the record of this case not very violent compared to what is available to children on television and in movie theaters today.”14 The court did not, however, completely foreclose the possibility that a more narrowly drawn ordinance, or one based on compelling evidence of harm, could survive constitutional scrutiny.15

      Other courts have followed the Seventh Circuit's reasoning in Kendrick, declining to treat violence like obscenity and thereby declining to take it out of the realm of constitutionally protected speech to permit increased regulation.16 Instead, they have subjected content-based efforts to restrict minors' access to violent video games to strict constitutional scrutiny,17 and none has survived.18 The evidence of harm stemming from these games has not been found to be compelling by any court that has examined it.

      In Entertainment Software Ass'n v. Blagojevich,19 for example, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois carefully assessed all of the underlying evidence offered in support of the conclusion that violent video games cause an increase in aggressive thoughts and behavior in minors who play them. The court concluded that the research20 did not establish “a solid causal link between violent video game exposure and aggressive behavior” and that researchers had not eliminated “the most obvious alternative explanation: aggressive individuals may themselves be attracted to violent video games.”21 Moreover, the court concluded, “[e]ven if one were to accept the proposition that playing violent video games increases aggressive thoughts or behavior, there is no evidence that this effect is at all significant.”22 In addition, the evidence did not show “that the purported relationship between violent video game exposure and aggressive thoughts or behavior is any greater than with other types of media violence, such as television or movies, or other factors that contribute to aggression, such as poverty.”23 The court also expressed concern that the legislative record did not indicate that the legislature had considered any of the contrary evidence, i.e., evidence that “showed no relationship or a negative relationship between violent video game play and increases in aggressive thoughts and behavior.”24 With respect to another type of research proffered at trial—use of neuroimaging techniques to measure blood flow to various parts of the brain in children and adolescents either with behavior disorders or high media violence exposure—the court found the criticisms of the studies more credible than the study results themselves; hence, the legislature could not reasonably conclude that minors who play violent video games are likely to experience reduced activity in the parts of the brain responsible for controlling behavior.25 Other courts have looked at the same body of evidence and drawn the same conclusions as the Blagojevich court.26 As noted by one constitutional law scholar, however, research in this area is ongoing.27 It is unknown whether in the future the evidence will reach the level necessary to satisfy a strict scrutiny constitutional test.

      B. Mandatory Rating or Labeling Systems

      Some of the legislative efforts to restrict the dissemination of violent video games have imposed a particular rating or labeling system on such products or otherwise required the dissemination of certain information about voluntary rating systems. Such laws—which require a private party to express or endorse a particular message—raise the additional First Amendment issue of “compelled speech.”28

      The Blagojevich court struck down requirements in the Illinois Violent Video Games Law (“WGL”) and Sexually Explicit Video Games Law (“SEVGL”) that a two-inch label stating “18” be affixed to all such games. The SEVGL further required that video game retailers post 18- by 24-inch signs, within five feet of every video game display or point of sale or rental, providing information about the Entertainment Software Rating Board (“ESRB”) voluntary rating system, as well as make brochures about the ESRB system available to customers.29 The court held that these requirements constituted “compelled speech subject to strict scrutiny.”30 The court declined to apply “the lower ‘commercial speech’ standard for disclosures, disclaimers, and warnings.”31 Applying the strict scrutiny test, the court struck down the labeling and disclosure provisions. With regard to the “18” label, the court stated that the requirement would force retailers “to affix a label that may obscure their own message about the content of the game (i.e., the ESRB ratings) and contradict their own opinion about the content of the game (e.g., putting the ‘18’ label on [a] T-rated game considered appropriate for thirteen-year olds).”32 With regard to the sign and brochure requirements, the court found that these provisions impermissibly required the retailers to present their own message—the ESRB rating system—in a manner mandated by the state.33

      C. Conclusion

      To date, state and local government efforts to restrict minors' access to violent video games, or to impose mandatory rating or labeling systems on these products, have not survived strict constitutional scrutiny. Uniformly, the courts have found the content of the games to be protected by the First Amendment and the asserted government interest of protecting minors not supported by compelling evidence of harm. Until the courts are presented with compelling evidence of harm linked to minors' viewing of violent images—harm either to minors themselves or to potential victims of aggressive impulses—it appears unlikely that content-based restrictions of violent video games will survive constitutional challenge.

      Endnotes

      1. See Appendix C, Marketing Violent Entertainment to Children: A Review of S elf-Regulation and Industry Practices in the Motion Picture, Music Recording & Electronic Game Industries, Report of the Federal Trade Commission (Sept. 2000), available at http://www.ftc.gov/reports/vio-lence/appendicesviorpt.pdf.

      2. See Interactive Digital Software Ass'n v. St. Louis County, Missouri, 329 F.3d 954 (8th Cir. 2003) and Am. Amusement Mach. Ass'n v. Kend-rick, 244 F.3d 572 (7th Cir. 2001), cert, denied, 534 U.S. 994 (2001).

      3. See Entm't Software Ass'n v. Foti, 451 F. Supp. 2d 823 (M.D. La. 2006); Entm't Software Ass'n v. Hatch, 443 F. Supp. 2d 1065 (D. Minn. 2006); Entm't Software Ass'n v. Granholm, 426 F. Supp. 2d 646 (E.D. Mich. 2006); Entm't Software Ass'n v. Blagojevich, 404 F. Supp. 2d 1051 (N.D. 111. 2005); Video Software Dealers Ass'n v. Schwarzenegger, 401 F. Supp. 2d 1034 (N.D. Cal. 2005); Video Software Dealers Ass'n v. Maleng, 325 F. Supp. 2d 1180 (W.D. Wash. 2004). See also Entm't Merck Ass'n v. Henry, 2006 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 74186 (W.D. Okla. Oct. 11, 2006) (preliminary injunction issued against enforcement of statute criminalizing dissemination to minors of material containing “inappropriate violence,” pending full First Amendment analysis in connection with consideration of motion for summary judgment).

      4. The ordinance defined “harmful to minors” to mean:

      “an amusement machine that predominantly appeals to minors' morbid interest in violence or minors' prurient interest in sex, is patently offensive to prevailing standards in the adult community as a whole with respect to what is suitable material for persons under the age of eighteen (18) years, lacks serious literary, artistic, political or scientific value as a whole for persons under” that age, and contains either “graphic violence” or “strong sexual content.” “Graphic violence,” … is defined to mean “an amusement machine's visual depiction or representation of realistic serious injury to a human or human-like being where such serious injury includes amputation, decapitation, dismemberment, bloodshed, mutilation, maiming or disfiguration [disfigurement]” Kendrick, 244 F.3d at 573.

      5. Id.

      6. Id. at 574.

      7. Id. at 575–76 (“Classic literature and art, and not merely today's popular culture, are saturated with graphic scenes of violence, whether narrated or pictorial. The notion of forbidding not violence itself, but pictures of violence is a novelty, whereas concern with pictures of graphic sexual conduct is of the essence of the traditional concern with obscenity.”). Judge Posner, writing for the court, analogized the ordinance to a law forbidding children to read, without the presence of an adult, The Odyssey, The Divine Comedy, War and Peace, or the stories of Edgar Allen Poe, or from viewing horror movies based on classic novels, such as Frankenstein and Dracula. Id. at 577.

      8. Id. at 577, 578 (“Violence has always been and remains a central interest of humankind and a recurrent, even obsessive theme of culture both high and low. It engages the interest of children from an early age, as anyone familiar with the classic fairy tales collected by Grimm, Andersen, and Perrault are aware…. These games with their cartoon characters and stylized mayhem are continuous with an age-old children's literature on violent themes.”).

      9. Id. at 574 (citing Miller v. California, 413 U.S. 15 (1973); the Miller test for obscenity has three prongs: “(a) whether ‘the average person, applying contemporary community standards’ would find that the work, taken as a whole, appeals to the prurient interest; (b) whether the work depicts or describes, in a patently offensive way, sexual conduct specifically defined by the applicable state law; and (c) whether the work, taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value.” 413 U.S. at 24 (citations omitted)). See also Interactive Digital Software Ass'n, 329 F.3d at 958 (“Simply put, depictions of violence cannot fall within the legal definition of obscenity for either minors or adults.”).

      10. Kendrick, 244 F.3d at 575.

      11. Id. at 575, 578–79.

      12. Id. at 574, 578. These studies are reported in Craig A. Anderson & Karen E. Dill, Personality Processes and Individual Differences—Video Games and Aggressive Thoughts, Feelings, and Behavior in the Laboratory and in Life, 78 /. Personality & Soc. Psych. 772 (2000). Kendrick, 244 F. 3d at 578.

      13. Id. at 578–79. See also Interactive Digital Software Ass'n, 329 F.3d at 958–59 (“The County's conclusion that there is a strong likelihood that minors who play violent video games will suffer a deleterious effect on their psychological health is simply unsupported in the record. It is true that a psychologist appearing on behalf of the County stated that a recent study that he conducted indicates that playing violent video games ‘does in fact lead to aggressive behavior in the immediate situation … that more aggressive thoughts are reported and there is frequently more aggressive behavior.’ But this vague generality falls far short of a showing that video games are psychologically deleterious.”).

      14. 7d.at579.

      15. Id. at 579–80 (“Common sense says that the City's claim of harm to its citizens from these games is implausible, at best wildly speculative. Common sense is sometimes another word for prejudice, and the common sense reaction to the Indianapolis ordinance could be overcome by social scientific evidence, but has not been…. We have emphasized the ‘literary’ character of the games in the record and the unrealistic appearance of their ‘graphic’ violence. If the games used actors and simulated real death and mutilation convincingly, or if the games lacked any story line and were merely animated shooting galleries (as several of the games in the record appear to be), a more narrowly drawn ordinance might survive a constitutional challenge.”). Cf. What's in a Game? State Regulation of Violent Video Games and the First Amendment: Hearing Before the Subcomm. on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Property Rights of the S. Comm. on the Judiciary, Mar. 29,2006 (Statement of Prof. Kevin Saunders, Michigan State Univ. Coll. of Law) (There is an “overwhelming consensus of the health and science community that media violence causes real world violence…. A conclusion by an earlier court that the science fails to establish the danger perceived by the public and the legislature is only a conclusion that the science at that time was lacking. It does not establish the conclusion that the science at the time of any future legislation or litigation is also lacking. Each time the issue arises, the courts must consider the science anew.”).

      16. Kendrick, 244 F.3d at 574–77 (citing Winters v. New York, 333 U.S. 507, 510 (1948) (refusing to treat magazines containing violent crime and detective stories as obscene under statute banning obscenity; the Court stated that although it could see “nothing of any possible value to society in these magazines, they are as much entitled to the protection of free speech asthebest of literature.”)); see also Interactive Digital Software Ass'n, 329 F.3d at 958–59; Eclipse Enters., Inc. v. Gulotta, 134 F.3d 63, 67–68 (2d Cir. 1997) (striking down statute prohibiting sale to minors of trading cards depicting violent crimes); Video Software Dealers Ass'n v. Webster, 968 F.2d684, 688 (8th Cir. 1992) (striking down statute that prohibited sale or rental to minors of videos containing violent content; statutory test for violence was patterned after Miller definition of obscenity); Blagojevich, 404 F. Supp. 2d at 1075–76. Nonetheless, some First Amendment scholars continue to argue for an expansion of the rationale of Ginsberg v. New York, 390 U.S. 629, 640 (1968) (“It is … fitting and proper for a state to include in a statute designed to regulate the sale of pornography to children special standards, broader than those embodied in legislation aimed at controlling dissemination of such material to adults.”) to define obscenity as to minors to include extreme violence as well as sexual content. See Kevin Saunders, Saving Our Children from the First Amendment, 146–63 (2003).

      17. Strict scrutiny analysis requires the government to show that: (1) the regulation serves a compelling government interest; (2) the means chosen to achieve that interest are narrowly tailored; and (3) the regulation is the least restrictive means of accomplishing the objective. See e.g., Sable Commc'ns of Cal, Inc. v. FCC, 492 U.S. 115,126 (1989); Arkansas Writers'Project, Inc. v. Ragland, 481 U.S. 221,231 (1987).

      18. See Interactive Digital Software Ass'n, 329 F.3d 954 (reversed district court decision upholding constitutionality of county ordinance making it unlawful to sell, rent, or make available graphically violent video games to minors, or to permit their free play of such games, without parental consent; ordinance cannot survive strict scrutiny under the First Amendment); Foti, 451 F. Supp. 2d 823 (preliminarily enjoined enforcement of Louisiana statute prohibiting sale or rental to minors of video or computer games that “appeal to a minor's morbid interest in violence,” on both First Amendment and vagueness grounds); Hatch, 443 F. Supp. 2d 1065 (permanently enjoined enforcement of Minnesota statute prohibiting individuals under age 17 from renting or purchasing video games rated AO or M by the ESRB, on First Amendment grounds and because use of ESRB rating system as legal standard constituted improper delegation of governmental authority); Granholm, 426 F. Supp. 2d 646 (permanently enjoined enforcement of Michigan statute imposing civil and criminal penalties for knowing dissemination to a minor of “an ultra-violent explicit video game that is harmful to minors,” as violation of First Amendment and unconstitutionally vague); Blagojevich, 404 F. Supp. 2d 1051 (permanently enjoined enforcement of Illinois law establishing criminal penalties for selling or renting violent or sexually explicit video games to minors and failing to label such games with two-inch label stating “18,” on First Amendment and vagueness grounds; the definition of “sexually explicit video games” included only the first two prongs of the Miller test for obscenity, but not the third, and hence was not subject to the deferential standard for juveniles as set forth in Ginsberg; compelled speech in required labels, signs, and brochures also violated First Amendment) (the decision with respect to sexually explicit video games was appealed and affirmed, Entm't Software Ass'n v. Blagojevich, 469 F.3d 641 (7th Cir. 2006); Schwarzenegger, 401 F. Supp. 2d 1034 (preliminarily enjoined enforcement of California statute restricting sale or rental of violent video games to minors and requiring label stating “18” on such games, on First Amendment grounds); Maleng, 325 F. Supp. 2d 1180 (permanently enjoined enforcement of Washington statute creating penalties for distribution to minors of violent computer and video games, on First Amendment and vagueness grounds).

      19. 404 F. Supp. 2d 1051.

      20. Much of the research involved experiments with college students who were exposed to either violent or non-violent video games and then asked to complete certain tasks or engage in competitive behavior. One longitudinal study of minors attempted to correlate exposure to violent video games over time with the propensity to engage in fights.

      21. Blagojevich, 404 F. Supp. 2d at 1063.

      22. Id.

      23. Id.

      24. Id.

      25. Id. at 1067.

      26. Hatch, 443 F. Supp. 2d at 1069–70; Granholm, 426 F. Supp. 2d at 653–54; Schwarzenegger, 401 F. Supp. 2d at 1046.

      27. Hearing Before the Subcomm. on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Property Rights of the S. Comm. on the Judiciary, Mar. 29, 2006 (Statement of Prof. Kevin Saunders), note 15 supra.

      28. Riley v. Nat'l Fed'n of the Blind, 487 U.S. 781, 795–98 (1988). In Riley, the Supreme Court found that charitable solicitations involved a mixture of commercial and non-commercial speech and hence applied the strict scrutiny standard to compelled disclosure requirements. Citing Zauderer v. Office of Disciplinary Counsel of the Sup. Ct. of Ohio, 471 U.S. 626 (1985), however, the Court noted that “[p] urely commercial speech is more susceptible to compelled disclosure requirements.” 487 U.S. at 796 n.9.

      29. Blagojevich, 404 F. Supp. 2d at 1057.

      30. 7d. at 1082, ajfd 469 F.3d at 652.

      31. 404 F. Supp. 2d at 1081–82 (citing Zauderer, 471 U.S. at 651–52). In Zauderer, the Supreme Court, citingthe test for commercial speech regulation first set forth in Central Hudson Gas & Flee. Corp. v. Pub. Serv. Comm'n of New York, 447 U.S. 557, 561 (1980), stated that “in virtually all our commercial speech decisions to date, we have emphasized that because disclosure requirements trench much more narrowly on an advertiser's interests than do flat prohibitions on speech, ‘[warnings] or [disclaimers] might be appropriately required … in order to dissipate the possibility of consumer confusion or deception.’” Zauderer, 471 U.S. at 651 (citations omitted). The Central Hudson test asks: (1) whether the speech at issue concerns lawful activity and is not misleading; (2) whether the asserted government interest is substantial; and, if so, (3) whether the regulation directly advances the governmental interest asserted; and (4) whether it is not more extensive than is necessary to serve that interest. 447 U.S. at 566. The Blagojevich court declined to apply the Central Hudson test for two reasons: (1) the “18” sticker contained no factual information about game content, created “the appearance that minors under eighteen are prohibited from playing such games,” and required a “subjective evaluation [of content] left to the discretion of the retailer”; and (2) with regard to all of the disclosure provisions, the state had offered no evidence of “actual confusion or deception of parents or children about the ESRB rating system or the content of the games” that would necessitate such measures. 404 F. Supp. 2d at 1081–82. In dicta, the court stated, however, that even under the commercial speech standard, “these provisions would be unconstitutional because they are ‘unjustified or unduly burdensome requirements’ that ‘offend the First Amendment by chilling protected commercial speech.’” Id. at 1082 n.12 (citing Zauderer, 471 U.S. at 651). The court noted that the labeling provision would require retailers “to play thousands of hours of video games in order to determine whether they must be labeled” and that the signage provisions would require “all video game retailers—even those who do not sell violent or sexually explicit games—to post large signs in multiple places about the ESRB rating system.” Id. at 1082 n.12. Affirming the lower court decision with respect to the SEVGL, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit stated that these disclosure requirements, involving “a subjective and highly controversial message,” were not comparable to constitutionally permissible forms of commercial speech regulation, such as nutrition information on food labels, health warnings on cigarettes, or disclosure that a product contains mercury. 469 F.3d at 651–53.

      32. 404 F. Supp. at 1082, aff'd 469 F.3d at 652. Cf. Schwarzenegger, 401 F. Supp. 2d at 1047 (requirement that a two-inch label stating “18” be affixed to the front of packages of “violent” video games not unconstitutional merely because it conflicts with industry's voluntary rating system, but likely to violate the First Amendment under strict scrutiny standard set forth in Riley).

      33. Blagojevich, 404 F. Supp. 2d at 1082, aff'd 469 F.3d at 653. See also Hatch, 443 F. Supp. 2d at 1071–72.

      Addendum B: Mystery Shopper Survey

      This Appendix reports on the fourth nationwide undercover or “mystery shopper” survey, which the Commission conducted in the spring of 2006, to determine the extent to which the entertainment industries restrict children's access to R-rated movies, explicit-content labeled music recordings, and M-rated games at the retail level. The Commission first conducted an undercover “mystery shopper” survey for its 2000 Report to determine whether unaccompanied 13- to 16-year-olds could purchase tickets to R-rated movies, explicit-content labeled recordings, and M-rated games.1 Follow-up surveys were published in the December 2001 and 2004 Reports.2 For the 2004 Report, the Commission also surveyed practices at stores selling R-rated movies on DVD. For this report, the Commission added to the survey unrated or director's cuts of movies that were rated R when they first played in theaters, and did additional video game shops in December 2005.

      A. Industry Self-Regulatory Policies for Limiting Access

      It is the retailers who implement any sales restrictions included in the self-regulatory rating and labeling programs. For movies, in response to the 2000 Report, the National Association of Theatre Owners (“NATO”) adopted a twelve-point initiative that, among other things, reaffirmed its existing ID-check policy for R and NC-17 films and promised to take steps to encourage theaters to enforce the rating system. In addition, NATO members appointed compliance officers to strengthen enforcement of the program.

      The Video Software Dealers Association (“VSDA”) (a trade group representing the interests of retailers who sell or rent movie videos and DVDs) has merged with the Interactive Entertainment Merchants Association (“IEMA”) (a trade group representing retailers of video games) to form a new group, the Entertainment Merchants Association (“EMA”).3 The EMA is seeking to adopt a uniform policy among its members on sales to children of R-rated videos and DVDs.4 As the survey results that follow indicate, this program is clearly not yet in place, given the ability of the mystery shoppers to purchase R-rated and unrated movie DVDs.

      In the case of video games, the Entertainment Software Association (“ESA”), formerly the International Digital Software Association (“IDSA”), continues to encourage retailers to adopt a program not to sell M-rated games to persons under 17, and most major retailers of video games have now adopted express policies restricting sales to those under 17.5 In addition, the ESRB recently created a retail council composed of some of the major sellers of video games. Members of this council not only have pledged to have in place policies to restrict sales of M-rated games, but also have agreed to allow and help fund unannounced undercover shops of their stores at least twice a year to check on their compliance with this policy. The first undercover shop of council members was to have occurred in September 2006.

      As noted in the report, the music recording industry's labeling program provides no age-based guidance. According to the National Association of Recording Merchandisers (“NARM”), some music retailers choose not to carry explicit-content labeled recordings or stock only edited versions, while others restrict sales to children. Still other retailers leave it to the parent to make the decision.6

      B. The Mystery Shopper Surveys

      The 2006 mystery shopper survey followed substantially the same methodology as the previous surveys. For each, the Commission, through a contractor,7 recruited 13- to 16-year-olds across the country to attempt to purchase movie tickets, music, or electronic games. Each teenage shopper visited one retail location for one or more of the entertainment products.8 Shoppers attempted to purchase either a ticket to an R-rated movie, an R-rated movie DVD, an “unrated/director's cut” of what had been released in theaters as an R-rated movie, an explicit-content labeled CD, or an M-rated electronic game. Parents transported the children to the store or theater but were instructed not to accompany the children during the transaction.

      The contractor required shoppers to submit proof of age and verification for completed purchases by submission of a receipt.9 In each survey, the panel was divided almost exactly between boys and girls and between younger and older shoppers (13 or 14 versus 15 or 16).10

      After attempting a purchase, the shopper completed a questionnaire on the contractor's proprietary website.11 In each survey, the questionnaire asked three questions:

      • Was there a sign, poster, or other information to inform customers of the rating/advisory system or the store/theater's policy on rating/advisory enforcement?
      • Was the child able to buy the product or admission ticket?
      • Did the cashier or clerk ask the child's age before purchase?
      C. The 2006 Mystery Shopper Survey

      In the 2006 survey, shoppers from 46 states attempted to purchase movie tickets, DVD movies, music recordings, and electronic games at 1509 theaters and stores. Sample size varied by the product shopped, with approximately 250 shops each of movie theaters and of music and R-rated movie DVD retailers, and 100 shops of retailers selling unrated movie DVDs. All of the shops for movie tickets, movies, and music recordings occurred in lune and luly 2006. The survey for M-rated video games used 657 shoppers, with 407 shoppers in December 2005, and an additional 250 shoppers in lune and luly 2006. The results of the survey are reported in Table 1, and combine the results of the two video game shops.12

      Key Findings

      The most striking finding for this survey was the major improvement in retailers' performance in restricting children's access to M-rated video games. Overall, video game retailers allowed 42% of the children to purchase a game, with national retailers doing even better (38%). This result indicates that national video game retailers, as a group, are attempting to live up to the promise they made after the Commission's workshop in 2003 to have in place by the end of 2004 a program to limit such sales.13 Even with those positive results, however, there is still room for improvement. Although the survey also found slight progress in limiting the sale of R-rated movie DVDs and music (as shown in Table 2), the results still show that a large majority of shoppers were able to buy these products. There was a non-statistically significant slippage in connection with movie theater admissions. Nonetheless, as a group, movie theaters still did the best of any seller of these products. Unrated DVDs—the one new product shopped for this survey—showed essentially the same poor results as R-rated movie DVDs, with 71% able to purchase the DVD.

      For most types of entertainment product, more shoppers noted that rating information was posted, and reported that the retail clerk or cashier had asked the shoppers' age. Although these changes were not always statistically significant, as shown in Table 3, they were in the same positive direction for each industry, with one exception (the extent to which the music shoppers saw rating information slipped somewhat from 2003).

      As in the previous surveys, theaters displayed rating information, asked young shoppers their ages, and restricted purchases more consistently than other entertainment retailers. Music retailers again were the least likely to provide information about the parental advisory, check shoppers' ages, or restrict purchases. DVD retailers' practices were approximately comparable to the music retailers' results for each measure, with slightly more DVD retailers posting rating information, asking age, and restricting purchase.

      Major Chain Comparisons

      Major Chain Comparisons

      A comparison of major14 chains in each industry, with one principal exception, showed that the largest theater circuits, DVD retailers, and music retailers were no more likely to display signs, posters, or other information about the rating system, ask age, or restrict sales to minors than non-majors. There were, however, substantial and statistically significant differences between major and non-major video game retailers, with national retailers more often posting information about the rating system (47% vs. 20%), restricting sales (62% vs. 37%), and asking age (55% vs. 34%). Still, even at the major retailers, nearly four out often teen shoppers (37%) were able to purchase an M-rated game.

      In addition, results varied from retailer to retailer and, at times, from product to product. For example, with regard to whether shoppers were turned away, Wal-Mart did the best of the major retailers shopped, turning away 85% of the video game shoppers and just over 75% of shoppers of R-rated and unrated movie DVDs (Wal-Mart does not sell explicit-content labeled CDs). In the case of explicit-content labeled music, Kmart did the best, turning away music shoppers 61% of the time. Most of the game (51%) and R-rated movie (64%) shoppers were also unable to buy at the Kmarts shopped. In contrast, the results for other major retailers varied by the product shopped. For example, at Best Buy, 67% of shoppers were unable to buy a video game, yet much smaller percentages of shoppers were turned away in their efforts to buy R-rated (13%) and unrated (11%) movie DVDs and explicit-content labeled music (11%).

      Comments on the Undercover Shops

      As part of the mystery shopper survey, the parents of the shoppers were asked to provide one or two sentences of commentary about the purchase attempt and describe any interaction that occurred between the child and the employees at the store or theater. The comments shed light on industry practices in a way that numbers alone do not. Many of the comments reflect that the cashier sold the product without a second thought or any question about the child's age. For others, the cashiers asked if the child's parent was around in an effort to complete the sale, or asked to see the child's ID. In one case, a stranger claimed to be the child's parent so that the child could purchase the product. Selected verbatim comments follow:15

      The child was not able to buy the video. He was asked for his birthdate. When he said he was 16, the child was told he needed a parent with him. He bought a Pepsi instead. He did not see signage indicating the rating system or the policy on rating enforcement. (DVD, age 16)

      The employee denied the sale after asking the child for her age. The employee stated they were not allowed to sell this particular DVD to a child of her age. (DVD, age 13)

      The employee asked for the child's ID. The child told her she did not have it with her. The employee apologized and told her she would have to come back with her ID because of the rating on the game, (video game, age 13)

      The employee asked the child if his mom was with him. He replied, “No.” The employee replied, “Then I can't let you buy this.” (video game, age 13)

      When the child approached the register with his purchase, he was immediately asked for his ID. When he complied, he was informed he was not old enough to complete the purchase, (video game, age 16)

      There was a wall chart about video game ratings posted on a pillar near the video game cabinets. The employee did not ask the child's age but did ask if he had a parent with him. When he said no, she told him the game was rated M, and she could not sell it. (video game, age 15)

      The employee asked the child, “Do you have a drivers license?” He said, “No. Do I need one?” The employee asked, “Do you have a parent around?” My son said he did not. The employee said, “It's mature rated. I can't let you buy it.” (video game, age 13)

      The cashier asked how old my daughter was and if she had ID. Without proof of age, she said she could not sell the item. My daughter bought gum instead. (CD, child)

      When my child requested the ticket, the employee asked for an ID. When my child said he didn't have one, a customer behind him said, “It's okay. I'm his Dad.” The employee asked, “Will you be seeing the same movie? Because they'll be checking again inside.” (movie ticket, age 14)

      The child asked for one ticket to V for Vendetta. The employee asked, “How old are you?” When the child said she was 16, the employee said, “Oh, I'm not supposed to sell that to you then.” (movie ticket, age 16)

      The child asked for the specific M-rated game, and bought it with no questions asked. Signs, posters, or other information to inform customers of the rating system or the store's policy on rating enforcement were not posted, (video game, age 15)

      When the child approached the counter, the employee did not even glance at the rating of the DVD, but instead, rang it up as a normal sale. (DVD, age 16)

      The employee never asked the child her age but he did ask for her telephone number. Signs, posters, or other information to inform customers of the rating system or the store's policy on rating enforcement were not posted, (movie ticket, age 14)

      The child requested a student ticket. The employee told him to enjoy the show. Signs, posters, or other information to inform customers of the rating system or the store's policy on rating enforcement were not posted, (movie ticket, age 16)

      The only question the child was asked was, “Did you find everything okay?” Signs, posters, or other information to inform customers of the rating system or the store's policy on rating enforcement were notposted. (CD, age 14)

      The employee said, “Hi. What movie would you like to see?” The child replied, “United 93.” The employee handed her the ticket and asked for $7.75. The child gave her the money, received the change, and was thanked. She then turned around and left, (movie ticket, age 14)

      The employee asked the child how he was doing. Nothing was said about age or ID. The child was able to buy the CD. (CD, age 13)

      My son walked up to the counter, and the employee asked, “Will that be all for you today?” My son was asked if he wanted a Barnes and Noble membership card that would save him 10% that day. He declined, and the employee sold him the CD. (CD, age 14)

      The front of the CD had the Parental Advisory sticker on the front. The CD was in the used bin but also was shrink wrapped and labeled with appropriate labels. The employee did not ask my child for ID or his age. He sold him the CD. (CD, age 14)

      There was a sign stating that no sales would be made to anyone under the age of 17 of M-rated video games. The child went to the register in the electronics department. The employee asked if this was all the child wanted and then rang up the sale, (video game, age 14)

      The employee did not ask the child any questions about her age. She rang up the item and announced the cost. Signs, posters, or other information to inform customers of the rating system or the store's policy on rating enforcement were not posted, (video game, age 13)

      Endnotes

      1. See Marketing Violent Entertainment to Children: A Review of Self-Regulation and Industry Practices in the Motion Picture, Music Recording & Electronic Game Industries, Appendix F (“2000 Report”), available at http://www.ftc.gov/reports/violence/appendicesviorpt.pdf

      The September 2000 survey comprised 1,158 theaters and stores.

      2. See Marketing Violent Entertainment to Children: A One-Year Follow-Up Review of Industry Practices in the Motion Picture, Music Recording & Electronic Game Industries, Appendix B (“December 2001 Report”), available at http://www.ftc.gov/os/2001/12/violencere-portl.pdf. The 2001 Mystery Shopper Survey comprised 900 theaters and stores. See Marketing Violent Entertainment to Children: A Fourth Follow-Up Review of Industry Practices in the Motion Picture, Music Recording & Electronic Game Industries, Appendix B (“July 2004 Report”), available at http://www.ftc.gov/os/2004/07/040708kidsviolencerpt.pdf. The 2003 Mystery Shopper Survey comprised 899 theaters and stores.

      3. See Entertainment Merchants Association Is Created by Merger of IEMA and VSDA, May 23,2006, available at http://www.marketwire.com/mw/release_html_bl?release_id=130780 (last visited Oct. 11, 2006).

      4. See Summary of Proceedings, EMA Video Board of Directors Meeting, July 10, 2006. “By a unanimous vote, the Board directed staff to develop a model code for ratings education, enforcement, and advertising that could be applied consistently to motion picture videos and computer and video games by all EMA members,” available at http://www.entertainmentmerchantsassociation.org (last visited Oct. 17,2006)

      5. See Statement of Hal Halpin, then President, Interactive Entertainment Merchants Association, FTC Workshop on Industry Self-Regulation (Oct. 29, 2003), available at http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/workshops/violence/transcript.pdf, p. 181. Mr. Halpin recently formed a new group, the Entertainment Consumer Association (“EGA.”), whose mission is “to give game consumers a voice and to ensure that elected officials hear their concerns and appreciate the growing influence of the gamer demographic.” See ECA Overview, available at http://www.theeca.com/about_eca.htm (last visited Oct. 25, 2006).

      6. NARM indicates that many retailers will accept returns if a parent concludes that a recording is inappropriate for his or her child. See NARM, Parental Advisory: A Message to Parents About Children and Music, available at http://www.narm.com/Content/NavigationMenu/RatingsLabeling/ParentalAdvisoryMaterials/AJVlessage_To_Parents.htm (last visited Oct. 4,2006).

      7. Second to None was the contractor for each of the mystery shops.

      8. No shopper visited more than one location for each type of entertainment product.

      9. If they were not able to make a purchase, the shoppers were to buy another item at the store or a ticket to another movie to get a receipt, except in cases where the shopper went to a movie theater showing only one R-rated movie.

      10. Slightly more shoppers were female (756 vs. 753), and about half (747) were younger shoppers (13 or 14 years old).

      11. Parents completed the questionnaire on the website after getting the information from the child (e.g., whether the child was able to purchase the product).

      12. When looked at separately, the results of the two video game shops are almost identical. For example, in both the December 2005 shop and June and July 2006 shops, 42% of shoppers were able to purchase an M-rated game.

      13. See “Major Retailers Announce New Campaign to Enforce Video Game Rating System” at http://releases.usnewswire.com/GetRelease.asp?id=121-12082003 (last visited Oct. 25, 2006).

      14. For purposes of this appendix, so-called “major” chains include only the very largest theater circuits and retailers in each industry. The “non-major” category includes independent stores as well as chains—including some large chains—that are not among the nation's very largest sellers ofthat category of product.

      15. Note that these comments are not necessarily representative of the shoppers' experiences as a group. The shopper's age is provided in the parenthetical following each comment.

      Addendum C: The Commission's Survey of Parents and Children regarding Video Games and the ESRB System
      I. Overview of Methodology
      A. Sampling Frame

      The sampling frame consisted of all blocks of telephone numbers with at least one listed residential telephone number. A block of telephone numbers consisted of 100 numbers having the same first eight digits. The survey employed the GENESYS sampling system that includes the database. GENESYS randomly generates representative single-stage samples of telephone numbers. It generates each telephone number by randomly selecting a block known to contain at least one listed residential telephone number and then randomly generating the two final digits to complete the number. The resulting sample of telephone numbers represents all U.S. households with telephones, both listed and unlisted, without bias and with the efficiency of a single-stage sample. The sampling frame was stratified to meet the goals of the sampling plan. The strata were constructed such that the resulting sample would provide a nationally representative statistical sample of U.S. households in the 50 states and the District of Columbia.

      B. Questionnaire Design

      The questionnaires were designed by the Commission staff in consultation with Dr. Manoj Hastak, a consultant to the FTC, and Synovate. To ensure that all aspects of the survey instruments and protocol were working as designed, pilot testing involved trained interviewers and the fully developed survey instruments programmed into the Computer Assisted Telephone Interviewing (CATI) system. The instruments were pilot tested early in the field period with a limited number of interviewers dialing households. The survey was deemed to be working as intended from a substantive and technical perspective and the fieldwork continued. Copies of the final questionnaires appear in Section II of this Appendix.

      C. Telephone Data Collection

      Interviewing began on July 25,2006 and continued through September 10,2006. Interviews were conducted between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m. Monday through Friday, between 9 a.m. and 8 p.m. on Saturdays, and between 11 a.m. and 8 p.m. on Sundays (all times local). Synovate's CATI system was used for data collection. Questionnaires were programmed into the system, and telephone interviewers read questions as they were logically fed in predetermined order from the computer to a viewing screen.

      D. Respondent Eligibility

      To be eligible to participate in the study, the following criteria had to be met:

      • the interviewee had to be a head of household
      • a child between the ages of 8 and 16 must have been living in the household at least half of the time
      • that child must have played video games in the past month
      • the head of household must have made at least half of the purchase decisions on behalf of that child

      Potential respondents were screened early in the questionnaire for qualification. Where multiple qualified children were present in the household, one child was randomly selected (the child with the most recent birthday) and the interview was focused on the behaviors related only to that one child.

      After the interview with the head of household was completed, he or she was asked for permission to interview the child on whom the head of household interview centered. Of 1,342 parents interviewed, 543 gave permission to interview the child, and 354 children were interviewed.

      E. Non-Response Follow-up Results

      All non-respondents were re-contacted by telephone one to two weeks following the initial contact in order to secure their cooperation. Those respondents who requested they not be contacted again were omitted from these dialing efforts. The contact was made by more experienced interviewers, specially trained in refusal avoidance techniques.

      In order to assess the extent of any bias due to non-response, a random subset of those who refused for a second time during the conversion attempt answered a few key questions. This procedure allowed detection of any differences between respondents and those who chose not to participate.

      F. Final Sample Dispositions and Response Rates

      The classification of each sample piece from the entire random digit dial (RDD) sample generated by GENESYS was based on the most significant attempt. For example, if a respondent was not available on the first attempt and subsequent attempts resulted in a no answer, the final disposition was Respondent Not Available. If a respondent quit during the first phase of dialing, and the number was found to be an answering machine on a s ubsequent conversion attempt, it was categorized as a Quit. Completed interviews obtained during the conversion phase of the study were included in the calculation of the final response rates. A response rate of 35% was computed using the AAPOR Outcome Rate Calculator Version 2.1, formula AAPOR RR3.

      II. Survey Instruments Annotated with Results

      NOTE TO QUESTIONER: RECORD WHETHER THE PARENT WAS ON THE LINE WITH THE CHILD FOR THE ENTIRE CALL, NEARBY FOR AT LEAST PART OF THE CALL, OR PARENT DID NOT APPEAR TO BE CLOSE BY.

      Endnotes

      1. The “-” symbol indicates that no respondents gave this particular response. Due to rounding, the total percentages for all responses to a particular question may be 99 or 101.

      2. The “∗” symbol indicates that less than 0.5% respondents gave this particular response. Due to rounding, the total percentages for all responses to a particular question may be 99 or 101.

      Addendum D: Internet Surveys

      This Appendix sets forth, for the motion picture, music recording, and electronic game industries, the results of the Internet website surveys conducted by the Commission during the summer and fall of 2006.

      I. Motion Picture Industry
      A. Studio Websites

      For its July 2004 Report, the Commission's review of twenty official movie websites showed that all sites displayed the film's rating symbol and rating reasons, and linked to at least two of three rating information sites (http://MPAA.org, http://filmratings.com, http://parental-guide.org).1 For this Report, the Commission again reviewed the rating information practices of twenty official movie websites.2 The Commission's review indicated that the studios are substantially complying with the Commission's recommendations in this area.3 Nearly all of the sites displayed the R-rating symbol and rating reasons somewhere on the site, and displayed the rating and reasons on either the teaser page or home page. However, less than half of the sites had the rating and reasons visible without scrolling down to the bottom of the web page.

      B. Theater and Movie Ticket Websites

      The Commission examined the practices of twelve motion picture theater chain websites in September 2006—AMC, Carmike, Century Theatres, Cinemark, Clearview Cinemas, Goodrich Quality Theaters, Kerasotes Theatres, Landmark Theatres, Marcus Theatres, National Amusement, Regal Entertainment Group,6 and Wallace/Hollywood Theaters7—with respect to five violent R-rated movies that were among the top box office films since July 15, 2006 and were in theaters at that time.8 With the exception of Clearview Cinemas, Landmark Theatres, and Wallace/Hollywood Theaters, these theater chains are all members of the National Association of Theater Owners (“NATO”).9 The Commission also examined the sites for two online movie ticket sellers—http://fandango.com and http://movietickets.com. All of the theater sites where the movies were playing displayed the movies' ratings and the rating reasons.

      The Commission's review of two movie ticket sites (http://Fandango.com and http://Movietickets.com) with respect to the same five movies yielded comparable results, with both websites displaying the films' official ratings and rating reasons. Although neither online ticket seller asked the visitor to disclose his or her age, NATO notes that there is no completely reliable way to verify age through online purchases, although an online purchase cannot be made without a credit card.11 Also, online purchasers typically must pick up their physical tickets at the movie theater, where ordinary age identification policies at the box office apply.12 Although for some locations it is possible to print tickets at home, NATO reports that these tickets are physically distinguishable from tickets purchased at the box office, and that this distinction alerts the ticket-taker at the theater of the possible need to verify age.

      C. Home Video/DVD Retailer Websites

      The Commission surveyed five online movie retailers' sites to determine their rating information practices with respect to five movies rated R for violence.13 All of the sites, except for

      http://TowerRecords.com, provided each movie's correct MPAA rating with the rating being visible on the computer screen without scrolling down the web page. http://OnlyAmazon.com and http://BestBuy.com provided the official rating reasons for each of the five films examined. None of the sites linked to film rating information sites, although http://BestBuy.com and http://TowerRecords.com provided information on their sites about the movie rating system. The Commission also examined the practices of these online retailers with respect to five violent unrated movies that also have an MPAA R-rated version: Alexander, Bloodrayne, Crash, Basic Instinct, and The Yards. See Section II.C of the Report for discussion of the results of this website review.

      D. DVD Rental Websites

      The Commission reviewed the practices of five websites that allow consumers to rent movies via the Internet.14 Four of the sites allowed users to rent films online that were then mailed to their homes,15 while one of the sites allowed users to download movies for viewing on the computer.16 All five of these sites displayed the movies' official ratings, and three of the five also displayed the films' rating reasons.17

      II. Music Industry
      A. Artist or Recording Company Websites

      As with the 2004 Report, despite the extension of the RIAA guidelines to include the online distribution and promotion of explicit-content labeled recordings on the Internet, the recording industry's performance in this area showed little, if any, improvement. For this Report, the Commission examined twenty official artist and recording company websites.18 Fifty-five percent (11 of 20) of the sites displayed the Parental Advisory Label (“PAL”), compared to 60% (12 of 20) in the 2004 Report.19 Eight of those eleven sites (about 73%) displayed the PAL logo on the home page and/or teaser page, compared to 67% (8 of 12) in the 2004 Report.20 In addition, the percentage of sites that provided a legible PAL logo decreased slightly from 67% (8 of 12) in 200421 to 55% (6 of 11) in this review.

      Ninety percent (18 of 20) of the music company and artist websites examined offered the opportunity to purchase the explicit-content labeled recording, either from an official recording company website or through a link to a third-party online retailer. The PAL logo or other advisory language about the explicit content of the recording was visible some time during the search or purchase process for about 89% (16 of 18) of the sites, an improvement from 2004.22

      All of the artists had a MySpace page promoting their music albums either by providing album information or the ability to view a video or download a track from the album. Only 35% (7 of 20) of these pages had the album's parental advisory label displayed anywhere on the page, and in those instances, the PAL was very difficult to read.

      B. Retailer Websites

      The review of the five major online retailers' websites showed results somewhat similar to those found in past surveys.25 All of the music retailer websites indicated, either through a PAL logo or by other language, that the albums surveyed had explicit content.26 In many of these cases, the PAL logo was difficult to read, although at http://Amazon.com one could click on the album image to enlarge the picture and make the PAL logo readable. Nearly two thirds of the time (in 15 of 25 instances), the visitor, regardless of age, could play audio or video clips from the explicit album. Only one of the sites provided any detailed information about the PAL system.27 http://BestBuy.com, http://SamGoody.com, and http://TowerRecords.com consistently provided advisory language throughout the purchase process. Many of the websites also provided non-explicit, i.e., “edited” or “clean” versions of the albums sold.

      C. Music Download Websites

      The Commission reviewed five popular online music download websites: iTunes, MusicMatch, Napster, RealNetworks' RealOne Rhapsody, and AOL Music for their disclosure practices regarding five tracks from albums bearing a Parental Advisory Label.29 Nearly all of the music download websites had the music track's PAL logo displayed somewhere on their websites, although the logo was readable on less than half of those sites. Two of the six sites offered some kind of parental controls to limit children's access to explicit content.

      III. Electronic Game Industry
      A. Game Publisher Websites

      Twenty game websites were surfed to determine their compliance with certain of the Entertainment Software Rating Board (“ESRB”) disclosure requirements.30 All of the websites displayed the ESRB rating and icon somewhere on the site, and also displayed the game's content descriptors without requiring the visitor to hold the cursor over the rating icon, a notable improvement from 2004.31

      However, 75% (15 of 20) required the visitor to scroll down the screen to view the rating, as did 80% (16 of 20) for the descriptor. Thirteen of the sites provided a demo (a small portion of the game for the visitor to play) or a trailer (non-interactive video clips of game play), but only 54% (7 of 13) of the demos or trailers displayed the rating, and only 31% (4 of 13) displayed the content descriptors.32

      Sixty-five percent (13 of 20) of the game sites asked the visitor to disclose his/her age before viewing the site. Of those thirteen sites, all of them prevented the visitor from viewing the site if the visitor entered an age under 17. However, four of those sites allowed the user to access the site if the visitor hit the “back” key on the browser and then entered age 19.33 Fourteen of the sites allowed the visitor to purchase the game, either at the site or through a third-party site. All of the games that could be purchased displayed a rating on a page that the visitor had to view at some point during the purchase process of the game, and all but two displayed content descriptors on a page that the visitor had to view during the purchase process.34

      B. Retailer Websites

      For this Report, the Commission reviewed five retailer sites—http://Amazon.com, http://BestBuy.com, http://CircuitCity.com, http://EBGames.com, and http://GameStop.com—to see if they included rating information for five M-rated games.37 The survey found that the rating usually was prominently placed near the box art. The retailers also linked from the web page to information on the ESRB rating system and also linked to the ESRB's website, a dramatic improvement from 2004, when only Circuit City's site did. Some of the sites also provided additional information, such as reviews or descriptions of the game, that may give more details about game play and content.

      Endnotes

      1. See Marketing Violent Entertainment to Children: A Fourth Follow-Up Review of Industry Practices in the Motion Picture, Music Recording & Electronic Game Industries (July 2004) (hereafter “2004 Report”) at 8, available at http://www.ftc.gov/os/2004/07/040708kidsviolencerpt.pdf

      2. The Commission examined the official websites promoting the following twenty motion pictures in September 2006: 10th and Wolf, A Scanner Darkly, Children of Men, Crank, District B13, Feast, Haven, Idlewild, Miami Vice, Saw III, Snakes on a Plane, The Black Dahlia, The Departed, The Descent, The Fountain, The Omen, The Protector, The Quiet, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning, and Waist Deep. The movies were selected based on the following criteria: they had or have a release date between June 1, 2006 and December 25, 2006, received an R-rating, and had a rating reason that involved violence. The studios that released these films included MPAA members as well as non-MPAA members.

      3. See Addendum D for more detailed results of the survey.

      4. Although the movie 10th and Wolf's website noted to go to http://mpaa.org for ratings information, the site did not provide a direct link to MPAAs website.

      5. According to MPAA advertising guidelines, if a movie producer or distributor creates an adult site to advertise an R- or NC-17-rated movie, the site “must be accessible only through a suitable age-verification system that blocks access by children.” MPAA Advertising Handbook at 35 (2006) (on file with Commission staff). Universal Pictures informed the Commission that it acquired age verification technology from a third party, enabling it to restrict certain designated content on the website for Miami Vice to adult users (18 and over) for clips and other materials. See Letter from Carolyn A. Hampton, Vice President—Legal Affairs, Universal Pictures Business and Legal Affairs, to Keith R. Fentonmiller, Staff Attorney, Federal Trade Commission, at 1 (Sept. 18,2006) (on file with Commission staff) (for the Miami Vice website); Telephone Conversation with Carolyn A. Hampton, Vice President—Legal Affairs, Universal Pictures Business and Legal Affairs (Oct. 17,2006). To access certain content, users were advised that they must be over 18 years old to proceed, and instructed to input their names, birth dates, and zip codes. The web page stated that the information would be checked against government records. The information then was sent directly to Verification Integrity Financial Assurance Corporation (“Verifac”), a company that specializes in providing age verification services; this information reportedly was not stored after the verification process. After a successful verification process, the visitor was allowed into the restricted site, which at the time included movie clips containing violence and profanity.

      6. In the 2004 Report, United Artists Theatres was used in the motion picture theater sites surf. Since then, United Artists has joined the Regal Cinemas Entertainment Group.

      7. Since the 2004 Report, Wallace Theater Corp has merged with Hollywood Theaters and is now known as Wallace/Hollywood Theaters.

      8. The movies examined at these sites included Crank, Miami Vice, Snakes on a Plane, The Descent, and The Protector.

      9. NATO has disseminated to its members a “Web Site Movie Ratings Checklist” that details specific recommendations for theater company websites and movie ticketing websites. The checklist states that:

      ! Ratings should be prominently displayed in conjunction with all movies referenced on the site;

      ! Rating reasons should be prominently displayed in conjunction with the rating for all movies referenced on the site;

      ! The site should provide detailed general descriptive information about the MPAA/NATO movie ratings system;

      ! The site should link to rating information available on other sites, such as http://parentalguide.org, http://filmratings.com, or http://MPAA.org; and

      ! The site should include additional warnings related to the admittance of people under age 17 to R-rated movies, or people under age 18 to NC-17-rated movies.

      See Revised Response by The National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO) to the Federal Trade Commission Regarding the Commissions 2006 Study of the Marketing of Violent Entertainment to Children at 11–12 (Oct. 6,2006) (hereafter “NATO Letter”).

      10. Regal Cinema's website links to http://Fandango.com for movie information.

      11. See NATO Letter, supra note 9, at 13.

      12. When trying to purchase tickets at http://Fandango.com for an R-rated movie, one could select a child's priced ticket to see the film, but under “Purchase Policy” there was a note to “Be Prepared to Present Your Credit Card and Your Picture ID” at the movie theater. (http://www.fan-dango.com/PurchasePolicy.aspx?source=foot_policies, last visited on Oct. 2,2006).

      13. The Commission examined the following retailer websites in September 2006: http://Amazon.com, BestBuy.coin, http://CircuitCity.com, SamGoody com, and http://TowerRecords.com. The Commission surveyed these same sites in connection with its 2004 Report. See 2004 Report, supra note 1, at 8–9. In this instance, the Commission reviewed the sites' rating information practices pertaining to the following movies rated R at least in part for violence: Beowulf and Grendel, Inside Man, Lucky Number Slevin, United 93, and Vfor Vendetta. See Addendum D for more detailed results of the survey.

      14. The rental sites were http://Blockbuster.com, http://GameZnFlix.com, http://Movielink.com, http://Netflix.com, and http://Qwikfliks.com. The Commission reviewed practices pertaining to five movie rentals that were the top-five R-rated movie rentals from http://imdb.com for the week ending September 9, 2006: Final Destination 3, Inside Man, Silent Hill, United 93, and Vfor Vendetta.

      15. These sites are http://Blockbuster.com, http://GameZnFlix.com, http://Netflix.com, and http://Qwikfliks.com. Upon signing up for these services and paying a monthly membership fee, consumers can rent a number of DVDs at one time.

      16. This site is http://Movielink.com, a joint venture by major motion picture studios Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios, Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Universal Studios, and Warner Brothers Studios. Once a film is downloaded from Movielink, a user has twenty-four hours to view it.

      17. None of the sites linked to any of the rating information sites, although two sites (http://Blockbuster.com and http://Netflix.com) did provide information about the MPAA rating system on their own websites. http://Blockbuster.com also has parental controls on a user's account, so a parent can restrict what movies their minor child can rent. Blockbuster's policy is to refuse rental or sale of R-rated movies to youths under the age of 17 unless parental consent is given. See http://www.blockbuster.com (last visited on Sept. 29,2006). http://Netflix.com tells users that they “must be 18 years of age or older to subscribe to the Netflix service. While individuals under the age of 18 may utilize the service, they may do so only with the involvement of a parent or legal guardian.” See http://www.netflix.eom/TermsOfUse#limitations (last visited on Sept. 29,2006).

      18. The websites reviewed were: http://www.beenieman.net, http://www.buckcherry.com, http://www.bustarhymes.com, http://www.dmx-official.com, http://www.e-40.com, http://www.icecube.com, http://www.kelisonline.com, http://www.lamb-of-god.com/sacrament, http://www.method-man.com, http://www.obietrice.com, http://www.pharrell-williams.com, http://www6.defjam.com/site/artist_home.php?artist_id=607, http://www.shallowbay.com, http://www.slayer.net, http://www.stonesour.com, http://www.trapmuzik.com, http://www.theroots.com, http://www.tooshortworld.com, http://www.young-dro.com, and http://www.yungjoc.com.

      19. See 2004 Report, supra note 1, at 15–16.

      20. Id.

      21. Id.

      22. For the 2004 Report, the PAL logo or other advisory language about the explicit content of the recording was visible sometime during the search or purchase process for about 67% (10 of 15) of the sites.

      23. The number of sites that allowed the visitor to listen to audio samples and play video clips stayed about the same since the 2004 Report. All of the sites allowed the visitor to play all or part of the album at the site, while 80% allowed visitors to play music video clips. In 2004, 95% of the sites surveyed allowed visitors to listen to music, and 90% provided music video clips. See 2004 Report at 15–16.

      24. The number of websites providing lyrics appears to have decreased, since only one website provided lyrics for the explicit-content labeled recordings as compared to five websites in the 2004 Report. In the 2004 Report, 15% of the sites (3 of 20) linked to http://RIAA.org or http://parentalguide.org, while in this report 10% of the sites (2 of 20) linked to these same sites. See 2004 Report, supra note 1, at D-4.

      25. The Commission reviewed five music retailer sites: http://Amazon.com, BestBuy.coin, http://CircuitCity.com, http://Samgoody.com, and TowerRecords. com. The recordings examined at these retailers' websites were Future Sex/Love Sounds by Justin Timberlake, Game Theory by The Roots, Extreme Behavior by Hinder, Dutchess by Fergie, and Phobia by Breaking Benjamin. These recordings were the top five albums with a Parental Advisory Label on http://Amazon.com as of September 14, 2006.

      26. Language used by the websites included: “Explicit Lyrics,” “Parental Advisory,” and “Explicit Content.”

      27. BestBuy.coin noted on the album's product information page whether or not an album had a Parental Advisory. If it did, it would say “Yes” next to the words “Parental Advisory.” If one clicked on the words, it would direct the user to a pop-up box with more information regarding the PAL system.

      28. http://Bestbuy.com provided detailed information about the Parental Advisory Label system when the visitor clicked on the words “Parental Advisory.” Also, http://Amazon.com provided an “Explicit Lyrics” link in the “Product Details” section. The link led to a page containing a definition stating, “The ‘Explicit Lyrics’ tag is equivalent to the ‘Parental Advisory’ slug that appears on the cover of certain CDs. The slug is a label provided by the Recording Industry Association of America that denotes the presence of strong language or depictions of sex, violence, or substance abuse. The decision to label specific CDs is made by recording companies in conjunction with the artists.”

      29. The music tracks examined at these online music download websites were SexyBack by Justin Timberlake, London Bridge by Fergie, Lips Of An Angel by Hinder, Pullin Me Back by Chingy Featuring Tyrese, and Money Maker by Ludacris Featuring Pharrell.

      30. The Commission examined the following twenty electronic game websites: 50 Cent: Bulletproof, Brothers in Arms: Road to Hill 30, Condemned: Criminal Origins, Darkwatch, Dead Rising, Devil May Cry 3: Special Edition Greatest Hits, Elder Scrolls IV Oblivion, Far Cry Instincts Predator, Final Fight: Streetwise, God of War, Godfather, Hitman Blood Money, Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks, Onimusha: Dawn of Dreams, Outfit, Prey, Resident Evil 4, Saint's Row, Scarf ace, and Tom Clancys Splinter Cell Chaos Theory. Each of these games was released in 2006 with an M-rating and a violence descriptor.

      31. In the 2004 Report, 75% of the websites displayed the ESRB rating and icon somewhere on the site.

      32. The websites for 50 Cent: Bulletproof, Condemned: Criminal Origins, Elder Scrolls IV Oblivion, and Final Fight: Streetwise all provided demos with both the rating icon and descriptor.

      33. In the context of implementing and enforcing the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998, 15 U.S.C. § § 6501–6508, and the related Rule, 16 C.F.R. Part 312, the Commission has recommended that website operators prevent children from using the back key to input a different age in order to circumvent the age verification process. See FTC, Frequently Asked Questions about the Children's Online Privacy Protection Rule, Vol. 1, No. 39 (advising websites targeting teens to “ask age in such a way as not to invite falsification” and suggesting the use of “a session cookie to prevent children from back clicking to change their age once they realize that parental consent is required to collect their information for the activity”), available at http://www.ftc.gov/privacy/coppafaqs.htm.

      34. In the 2004 Report, eleven of the games that could be purchased displayed a rating on a page that the visitor had to view at some point during the purchasing process, but only three displayed content descriptors on a page that the visitor had to view during the purchase process. See 2004 Report, supra note 1, at 25–26.

      35. If the publisher is selling the game online, both the rating icon and content descriptors must appear on any page where a game can be purchased. Principles and Guidelines for Responsible Advertising Practices and Advertising Code of Conduct for the Entertainment Software Industry (“Ad Code”) (as amended April 1, 2006) at 43 (on file with Commission staff). Because a game often can be purchased from several different pages, the Ad Code would appear to require disclosures on multiple pages. For purposes of this review, however, the Commission deemed a site compliant with the Ad Code so long as the appropriate rating information was displayed on a page that a visitor must click through to make a purchase.

      36. For game “demos,” the rating icon and content descriptors or text of rating information (e.g., “ESRB Rating: EVERYONE with COMIC MISCHIEF”) must be displayed adjacent to the name of the title on the page where the demo is accessed or on the page prior to download. Id. at 44. The Commission's review showed that a visitor might navigate through several pages after requesting a download. Accordingly, as in prior reports, the Commission deemed a site compliant with the Ad Code's demo disclosure requirement, so long as the appropriate rating information was disclosed adjacent to the title of the game and either (a) in close proximity to the link that initiated the download, or (b) on any subsequent page through which a visitor must navigate during the download process.

      37. The games surveyed at these five sites were Condemned Criminal Origins, Dead Rising, God of War, Halo 2, and Saint's Row. These games were the top-five selling M-rated console games (Xbox, PS2, Gamecube) on http://Amazon.com as of September 14,2006.

      38. Condemned Criminal Origins was not for sale at this site.

      Addendum E: Data Collection Methodology and Television and Print Demographics

      In this Report, the Commission examined whether violent R-rated films, explicit-content labeled music, and M-rated video games continue to be marketed to children under the age designated in the rating (or, in the case of labeled music, to children under 17), and also whether rating information is included in advertisements for these products. The Commission examined numerous media sources, including media popular with teens in terms of total teen audience or percentage of viewers under 18. This Addendum describes these sources and the media monitoring the Commission undertook to gather data for this Report, and sets forth demographic data for the audiences for the television programs, websites, and publications discussed in the Report.

      I. Popular Television Shows among Teenagers

      The Commission examined advertising that aired in 2006 on network and cable television, including programs in syndication, principally using information from Nielsen Media Research as well as a database maintained by the Parents Television Council of ads placed in broadcast media. The Commission contracted with Nielsen to obtain lists of favorite television shows of children 17 and under. Using those lists, the Commission asked Nielsen to provide a copy and listing of ads for music, video games, and movies appearing on certain shows for which children aged 2 to 17 made up at least 20% of the live viewing audience. The television audience data reported in the tables below is for audiences aged 2 to 17, as indicated. Given that R-rated movies and M-rated electronic games are restricted only for children under 17, data for audiences under 17 would be most relevant; however, the age breakdowns set forth in the tables are the standard categories used for television audience measurement.

      As noted in the Report, there were numerous ad placements for R-rated films, R-rated and unrated movie DVDs, and explicit-content labeled recordings on those shows. There were several ads for M-rated electronic games found on the monitored programs.

      II. Print Media
      A. Magazines Reviewed to Assess Ad Placement

      From June 2002 through October 2003, the Commission reviewed magazines with majority or substantial youth audiences including game enthusiast magazines, skateboarding magazines, music publications, wrestling magazines, and general interest teen magazines. Many of these magazines had been previously identified in the marketing plans reviewed for the 2000 Report as magazines used when the industries' target audience included children under 17. Table 2 provides the names of the publications, the particular issues reviewed, and the demographics of readers (updated from the Commission's December 2001 Report, unless otherwise noted).

      III. Website Demographics

      Table 5 below sets out a list of websites on which certain R-rated movies, M-rated games, and/or explicit-content labeled recordings were advertised, according to data obtained from Nielsen//NetRatings.2 The table reports on the unique audience of 2- to 16-year-olds who visited these websites during four specific months between the fall of 2005 and the summer of 2006 (November 2005, February 2006, May 2006, and August 2006). Depending on the website, reliable demographic information is not necessarily available for all four of these months. Therefore, the table reports the average unique audience of those months for which reliable data are available. As noted above, for television programs, Nielsen reports demographic data for the 2 to 17 age category, and not the more precise 2–16 category.

      Tables 6 and 7 set forth certain demographic targeting information on 2- to 16-year-olds and 18- to 24-year-olds for http://MySpace.com during three months of 2006. Table 8 sets forth demographic data on 2- to 16-year-olds for http://PureVolume.com during three months of 2006.

      MySpace also is very popular with the 18- to 24-year-old demographic, but this older group views significantly fewer MySpace web pages than children under age 17 do.

      Endnotes

      1. The audience numbers appearing in Table 1 came from data obtained from Nielsen Media Research for the 2005–2006 television season.

      2. The Commission reviewed Nielsen//NetRatings data that was based on its panel of Internet users. Nielsen//NetRatings measures and reports Internet audience behavior based on data collected from home users in the United States.

      Photo Credits

      Photo credits

      Loretta Carlisle Photography: 35, 57, 68, 70, 75, 78, 100, 123, 138, 176, 181, 234, 270, 334, 362, 375, 378, 390, 395, 426, 434, 440, 466, 480, 482, 545, 587, 601, 602, 608, 611, 622, 626, 629, 675, 691, 712, 719, 774; Library of Congress: 65, 72, 92, 205, 237, 291, 296, 299, 341, 415, 421, 710, 748, 752, 755, 765, 780; iStockphoto: 156, 380, 541; http://Morguefile.com: 61 (photo by Scott Lidell); http://Photos.com: 3, 23, 26, 30, 32, 43, 50, 63, 81, 85, 87, 94, 114, 128, 147, 158, 172, 178, 191, 225, 232, 251, 256, 306, 319, 344, 348, 404, 429, 470, 486, 503, 513, 536, 555, 566, 594, 638, 648, 679, 688, 693, 699, 703, 730, 739, 773, 787; StockXchng: 105 (photoby Felipe Skroski), 171 (photo by Peter Ong), 245, 325, 372, 393, 423, 659, 667; Wikimedia: 16, 160, 161, 209, 280, 311, 329, 337 (photo by David Monniaux), 339, 345, 350, 355, 382 (photo by Larry D. Moore), 474, 584, 698, 761, 792, 798; The Yorck Project: 198. iStock: 134, 268, 278, 287, 301, 359, 369, 618.

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