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# The rating system for electronic games- Rate Please

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Senior Manager
Joined: 30 Jun 2011
Posts: 266

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12 May 2012, 00:55
this is my first post in AWA, i would like to know how experts find this essay. Later on i will keep this as a benchmark.

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ESSAY QUESTION:
The following appeared in the editorial section of a national news magazine:

"The rating system for electronic games is similar to the movie rating system in that it provides consumers with a quick reference so that they can determine if the subject matter and contents are appropriate. This electronic game rating system is not working because it is self regulated and the fines for violating the rating system are nominal. As a result an independent body should oversee the game industry and companies that knowingly violate the rating system should be prohibited from releasing a game for two years."

Discuss how well reasoned you find this argument. Point out flaws in the argument's logic and analyze the argument's underlying assumptions. In addition, evaluate how supporting evidence is used and what evidence might counter the argument's conclusion. You may also discuss what additional evidence could be used to strengthen the argument or what changes would make the argument more logically sound.

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RESPONSE (29 minutes, 5 para, 498 words)
The conclusion of argument states that electronic game rating system is not working because it is self regulated and the fines for violating the rating system are nominal. Furthermore, it states that an independent body should oversee the game industry and companies that knowingly violate the rating system should be prohibited from releasing a game for two years. Stated in this way, the argument fails to consider several key factors on which it could be evaluated. The conclusion of the argument relies on assumptions for which there is no clear support. Hence, the conclusion of argument is weak, unconvincing and has several flaws.

Firstly, the author assumes that electronic game rating system is not working because it is self regulated. The statement is weak and is not substantiated in any way. There are numerous systems that are self regulated and are working efficiently. For example, movie rating system in many European countries is self regulated and so far no reports regarding inefficiency of the system has been received. On the other hand, people seem to have very well responded to those rating and often they base their decision of whether to watch a movie on these ratings. Clearly, there is no support for the conclusion made in the argument. The argument would have been clearer if the author explicitly mentioned how self regulation reduces the efficiency of electronic game rating system.

Secondly, the author claims that electronic game rating system is not working because the fines for violating the rating system are nominal. This is again a weak statement as there is no correlation between not working of electronic game rating system and the fines for violation. To illustrate, even though fines for traffic violation in Belarus is nominal, people rarely violate traffic rules. To add to this, Last year, Belarus had the lowest per capita traffic rule violations. Indeed, there are other reasons for not working of electronic game rating system. If the author had mentioned examples or instances to substantiate the reasons for correlation, then the argument would have been more convincing.

Finally, the argument concludes that an independent body should oversee the game industry and companies that knowingly violate the rating system should be prohibited from releasing a game for two years. From this statement is difficult to know how inclusion of an independent body or prohibiting companies that violate rules would help to improve working of electronic rating system. Without supporting evidence and relevant examples, one is left with the notion that argument is the result of wishful thinking rather than substantive evidence. As a result, the argument has no legs to stand on.

In conclusion, the argument is weak because of above mentioned reasons and is therefore flawed. It could be considerably strengthened if author mentioned all of the relevant facts. In order to estimate the validity of a argument it is essential to have full knowledge of all the contributing factors. Without this information, the argument is un-substantiated and open to debate.
The rating system for electronic games- Rate Please   [#permalink] 12 May 2012, 00:55
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