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NZ Censor Doesn’t Stymie Grand Theft Auto Plot

By Steven | April 28, 2008

You could be forgiven for getting the opposite impression from the NZ Herald’s headline:

Censor Stymies Grand Theft Auto Plot

It rather suggests that our censor has carved out chunks of the latest version of the wildly popular – and wildly violent – video game Grand Theft Auto.


If you read the story carefully, hang your head sideways and squint a bit, you’ll see what’s happened is this. The distributors of the game cut some (non-crucial, they say) bits of the game in order to get an MA15+ game rating in Australia. (There’s no R18 rating over there. All of the previous versions of the game have been rated R18 here).

So, in fact, it seems that even the Australian censorship authorities didn’t censor anything (though it’s true that the distributors have made the changes to comply with the requirements of an MA15+ rating before submitting the game for classification). Unhappily for NZ gamers, we’re on the same distribution loop, so we’re getting the edited version, even though the unedited version would probably also have been rated R18 here. They’re suffering because of the daftness of an Aussie┬áregime that doesn’t include an R18 rating.

But nobody’s actually censored anything, except the distributors themselves.

Topics: Censorship, General, Media ethics | 1 Comment »

One Response to “NZ Censor Doesn’t Stymie Grand Theft Auto Plot”

  1. Steve Withers Says:
    April 30th, 2008 at 10:59 am

    I suppose anyone who mail-ordered the game directly from the US would / should submit it for classification? Im not sure if that applies to private use or to sale or both.


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