The last week has seen multiple reports that Turkey is on its way to ban Minecraft, a game newly acquired by Microsoft. Minecraft is a game that allows the imagination of players to run wild while coming up with their own creations. But in order to build things in the game, the players need to “kill” animals and other obstructions. Earlier this week, it was brought to the notice of Microsoft that the game is promoting violence and should be edited.
It is believed that the report by an organization for children was not taken seriously by Microsoft. The organization then approached the Family and Social Policy Ministry for a ban on the game. The ministry officials, based on the report by the non-governmental organization, are mulling a ban on Microsoft Minecraft.
Oke, a spokesman of Turkey Embassy in USA, said that there was no question of a ban on the game. He said that the ministry can only study reports and does not have any authority to ban anything. It can however, recommend actions to be taken on reports submitted to it.
Oke said that only a court in Turkey can ban the Microsoft Minecraft but there are no such indications as of now. The game makers (Microsoft) have been given time to study the reports against the game and to take necessary actions so that no court in Turkey is banned. The spokesman also said that the non-governmental organization has not yet reached out to any court and the government cannot ban the game without interference of a court.
Microsoft will be given ample time to study the reports related to Minecraft before taking any action on them. The most probably thing to happen would be slight editing in the game to remove the ‘so called violent parts’. Another probability is that the game will be challenged in a Turkish court. In that case, Microsoft has to prove that the game is innocent and does not promote violence.
The volunteer organization that filed complaint that Minecraft is promoting violence says that the game is making children believe that killing animals is ok and hence they (the kids) may start killing the animals in real life too. This theory is too weak to be admitted to any court as a public interest litigation. Oke said that the chances of any Turkish court entertaining such a PIL are very low and hence there may never be a ban on Minecraft.