View Full Version : New York Bans Over 3,500 Gaming Accounts of Registered Sex Offenders

Shawn Zipay
04-05-2012, 06:07 PM
Working with Microsoft, Sony, Apple, and others New York State banned 3,580 online gaming accounts belonging to registered sex offenders. The New York Attorney General's office obtained the information of the users screen names and email addresses, as is required by law for sex offenders, and issued the sweeping ban.

They dubbed this mass banning as Operation: Game Over.

As a result of Operation: Game Over, 3,580 accounts of New York state sex offenders have been purged or their communication privileges suspended from the gaming platforms owned by Microsoft, Apple, Blizzard Entertainment, Electronic Arts, Warner Bros. and Disney Interactive Media Group.

This move was done to protect underage persons from falling victim to any of these sexual offenders in a realm where they are most vulnerable and with little adult supervision. The ESA issued their own statement on the matter.

"Our industry welcomes appropriate efforts allowing people of all ages to play games in a safer environment. Online game play with friends is a social experience and we encourage parents to be aware of what games their children are enjoying and with whom they are interacting in the virtual space. Through the use of robust parental controls and awareness of the online world, playing games online can be a fulfilling and rich experience." Christian Genetski, Senior Vice President and General Counsel

Microsoft also offered up their own official comment regarding the bans.

"At Microsoft, we continually evaluate ways to manage safety for our 40 million Xbox LIVE members and particularly for children on our service. Our partnership with the Office of the New York Attorney General helps further this cause. By leveraging the online identity information all registered sex offenders are required to provide, we are able to help reduce potentially harmful situations. We're supportive of Attorney General Schneiderman's efforts to make the Internet, including online gaming environments like Xbox LIVE, safer for everyone."

How long has your organization been working with the AG office on this initiative?
"We can confirm Microsoft was one of several companies in the video game industry that worked over the course of several months to partner with the New York State Office of the Attorney General as part of this action.

If you can speak to it, what did the process entail on the part of your organization?
We compared specific member details against data collected by New York State under the e-STOP law. This is data that registered sex offenders in New York are required to provide to the state. We are using very specific data to ensure the accuracy of individual bans and providing an appeal process out of an abundance of caution.

These bans seem to have been issued whether or not these persons actually did anything of note through their online presence.

(Kotaku (http://kotaku.com/5899463/new-york-state-just-banned-3500-online-gamers-who-are-all-sex-offenders))

04-06-2012, 09:05 AM
I would like to comment on this article and laws such as these, however, being the internet, you cant show factual legality without someone shouting about how you are a pedophile, for racism, rape, murder, sexism, or the killing of our children. So now that I put my little blurb up;

This is yet one more abuse of the American law system and how we all stand idly by and let it happen for "the protection of our innocent children." We immediately think these people are the most extreme and violent killers when we actually don't know their circumstances at all. After these, and many other types of criminals, serve their time they continue to serve time outside of prison for their crime.

They've done time served, yet for being marked with "sex offender" they are still trapped in a bubble of regulation for the rest of their lives because our laws are abused so much that the truly guilty are not truly punished and the innocent or misunderstanding of the situation gets punished regardless of what the crime really was or the circumstances behind it. So we take a blanket label and apply to all for after institutionalization and shackle "free" people to laws that were just as weak as the ones that put them into incarceration.

Years ago there was one of those investigative shows that did a sex offender expose, I forget what show it was. It was like 60 minutes back in the day, and they did story after story of many misunderstandings as well as people found innocent after being guilty, but no way to remove themselves from "The List". I dont know if all that is still in place or if it has been corrected, but I do know that things like this article continue, regardless of the persons situation, and this is exactly why so many of these "sex offenders" disappear and go off the grid.

Maybe if we put some real laws up and go back to actual reasoning into our law systems when it comes to abusive crimes for after time is served, the truly guilty and dangerous people for our children will get actual justice and the truly innocent will get their life back after prison like they were suppose to.

04-09-2012, 02:18 PM
Ditto Crunch...It's painting with a wide brush.Honestly shouldn't we be more concerned about the UNREGISTERED sex offenders.I wonder if they could put as much time and effort into actually working on catching people who commit crimes actively and not those who have already been caught and served their sentence.Makes me wonder do they put a label on games in New York that say "Registered Sex offenders banned from purchasing this item."