US Supreme Court Strikes Down Video Game Law, Says California Cannot Ban The Sale Of Video Games To Minors

The US Supreme Court just ruled on Brown v. Entertainment Merchants Association (formerly Schwarzenegger v. EMA) and deemed a 2005 California law unconstitutional, which prohibited the sale of violent video games to minors. Simply put, California cannot ban the rental or sale of violent video games to children. This was previously banned by the 2005 law introduced by State Senitor Leland Yee and punished offending retailers with a $1,000 fine for each infraction.

The SCOTUS ruled in a 7-2 vote that the law was unconstitutional.

The law was somewhat expected to see this fate as it was rather broad and prohibits too much speech. The case was more than just restricting the sale of rated M games to minors. It quickly turned into a first amendment argument and whether video games have the same rights as other forms of media. The ruling therefore states that the First Amendment covers video games under free speech and should not be treated any different than movies and music.