Judge to rule on California video game law

The fate of a California law banning the sale of certain violent video games to minors is now in the hands of a federal judge, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

U.S. District Judge Ronald Whyte heard arguments Friday in San Jose, Calif., from attorneys on both sides of the case, which challenges the constitutionality of the law . The plaintiffs are the Video Software Dealers Association and Entertainment Software Association.

Whyte said he'd rule on the case shortly, The Chronicle said.

In a preliminary ruling in October, Whyte blocked enforcement of the law, saying it violates the First Amendment's guarantee of freedom of expression.

California is one of a string of states that recently have enacted similar laws restricting violent and sexually explicit video games--legislation that has been uniformly rejected by the courts. U.S. politicians are also getting in on the game-crackdown action.

The California law restricts minors from buying violent video games, defined as those in which the player has the option of "killing, maiming, dismembering or sexually assaulting an image of a human being" in offensive ways.

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Michelle Meyers, associate editor, has been writing and editing CNET News stories since 2005. But she's still working to shed some of her old newspaper ways, first honed when copy was actually cut and pasted. When she's not fixing typos and tightening sentences, she's working with reporters on story ideas, tracking media happenings, or freshening up CNET News' home page.


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