White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders announced today that president Trump would be meeting with leaders from the video game industry on the topic of violent video games and their role in events like the Parkland shooting. The Entertainment Software Association, a consortium made up of major video game companies like Nintendo, EA, Take-Two, and many, many others, says they have not been invited to meet with the president.
The press secretary did not answer questions of who would be in attendance, but stated that the intention of the meeting is to explore what the video game industry can do about America’s gun violence problem.
In response, the ESA released this statement:
ESA and our member companies have not received an invitation to meet with President Trump.
The same video games played in the US are played worldwide; however, the level of gun violence is exponentially higher in the US than in other countries. Numerous authorities have examined the scientific record and found there is no link between media content and real-life violence.
The US video game industry has a long history of partnering with parents and more than 20 years of rating video games through the Entertainment Software Rating Board. We take great steps to provide tools to help players and parents make informed entertainment decisions.” – Entertainment Software Association – March 1, 2018
It is unclear who the president will be meeting with or when the meeting is set to take place. The announcement of the meeting comes after several days of the White House indicating that the solution to gun violence in America is to “do something” about violent media, a charge he has been repeating since 2012.
There has been no information thus far that indicates the perpetrator of the massacre at Stoneman Douglas High School was particularly involved with video games, violent or otherwise.
The meeting itself makes little sense, as the video game industry will not agree to the idea that games are responsible for gun deaths, and the White House is very insistent with no cited studies that they are. If the White House has invited other parties, it will be interesting to see who they are.