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All-Party Parliamentary Group for Video Games and Esports meets to discuss how the industry safeguards players online

The All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Video Games and Esports met yesterday to discuss how the games industry works to protect its player communities as the draft Online Safety Bill continues its process of pre-legislative scrutiny. 

APPGs are informal groups of MPs and Peers who share a common interest in a certain topic or issue. The APPG for Video Games and Esports includes cross-party members and is ran by Ukie. 

Online games remain incredibly popular with young players, and after the coronavirus restrictions of last year, this has only increased. Research from Ofcom has demonstrated that seven in ten 5-15 year olds played games online in 2020. As a result, there may be concerns as to whether the frequency and severity of harms to young players have equally increased.  
With this in mind, the APPG for Video Games and Esports met yesterday to hear from the National Crime Agency, who discussed how they engage with the games industry, and Childnet, who shared with the group next year’s Safer Internet Day’s theme of exploring respect and relationships online. 

This was followed by representatives from games companies Roblox and MovieStarPlanet who educated APPG members about the extensive efforts taken by the industry to ensure player safety - from technical to human measures - and also emphasised the importance of digital literacy.  

The group also welcomed new APPG member, Dr Luke Evans MP, bringing the total number of members to 13. 

The games industry will be engaging with MPs at Westminster Games Week later this year. Find out more about the event here.