RapeLay developers dismiss US protesters
08/05/2009 at 14:37
Source - AsiaOne Digital
Protests by US rights campaigners against the game "RapeLay" have been shrugged off by the game's developers, last Friday.
RapeLay is a Japanese videogame that allows the player to simulate sexual violence against virtual females, including stalking girls on trains, and raping virgins and their mothers. The rapes continue till the mother and her daughters begin to enjoy it. When one of the women becomes pregnant, the player then must force her to have an abortion.
The game hit the news in February when Amazon.com removed it from sale on their website.
, based in New York, have been campaigning against such rape simulators and the normalisation of sexual violence in Japan.
"One wonders why the government of Japan has not taken steps to stop games that normalize and promote rape," said Taina Bien-Aimé, Executive Director in Equality Now's New York office. "As the United Nations has stated, any government that appears to condone such violence against women, which permeates in society, bears responsibility."
But Illusion, the makers of RapeLay, have shrugged off the campaign, saying that they are "bewildered" by the move. "We make the games for the domestic market and abide by laws here," said a spokesperson. "We cannot possibly comment on (the campaign) because we don't sell them overseas."
While Japan banned the production, distribution and commercial use of under-18 pornography in 1999, the ban did not cover illustrations or computer graphical representations of minors.
Equality Now states that the local government in Tokyo was forced to introduce women-only carriages after a survey found that 64% of women in their 20s and 30s had been molested on public transport, a setting found in the RapeLay game.
A spokeswoman for the Japanese government's gender equality bureau said, "While we recognise that some sort of measures need to be taken, the office is currently studying what can be done."
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