• Chicago Transit Authority Bans Ads for Violent Video Games
  • January 9, 2009
  • Law Firm: Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP - Los Angeles Office
  • The Chicago Transit Authority has permanently banned advertisements for violent video games following the conclusion of a lawsuit over ads for the video game Grand Theft Auto 4.

    Before the debut of Grand Theft Auto 4 in April 2008, its developer, Take-Two Interactive Software Inc., and the CTA agreed to an ad campaign for the game to appear throughout the city’s buses and subway system. After the ads were up for a short time, public criticism linking such games to real-world violence persuaded the CTA to take down the ads.

    Take-Two then sued the CTA for breaching the parties’ $300,000 advertising contract. In a settlement, the CTA has agreed to run the ads for six weeks, or through the holiday season.

    “The CTA made the earlier decision to remove the ads from the system following some violence in the city,” said CTA spokesperson Noelle Gaffney. “The CTA felt that, based on the circumstances, it was in the best interest of our customers to remove the ads and further review the circumstances.”

    However, following the CTA’s concession, its board has now voted to ban outright any advertising for violent games. The board cited a “ ‘demonstrable correlation’ between intensely violent video games and violent or aggressive behavior.”