Back in late October of 2018 a development partner for the Japanese and European branch of Marvelous Entertainment who works for Igrasil Studio, named Yagyu, started a petition in hopes of getting Sony to recognize that the censorship policies that they had in place for the PS4 were disruptive, negatively impacting both consumers and developers alike (most of whom are Japanese). After incurring a mysterious circumstance where thousands of the petition’s signatures went missing, and after many fans began ramping up their voice to express concern over the censorship, Sony UK reached out to Yagyu to have a conversation about the new censorship policies.
The news about Sony UK willing to engage in a conversation came by way of an update that was posted on December 2nd, 2018 over on the Change.org website, where Yagyu explained…
“Hello friends, I’m about to talk with Sony UK next week, they can’t fix the problem since they’re not authorized to change something but they’re able to get in touch with the HQ at least.
“I’ll let them know what the problem is and why its kinda important for their future. Especially for the PS5 or similar products if they want to win the next console race again.” […]
As mentioned in the quote, the Sony UK division has no authority over changing global policies for the Sony PlayStation brand. This is because Jim Ryan only has control over the U.K., division of Sony Interactive Entertainment, while John Kodera controls the Americas, Japan, and Asia divisions of Sony Interactive Entertainment, as noted over on the official SIE website.
The decision to employ censorship standards globally for PS4 games was passed down from the American branch of the company, and it even requires Japanese developers releasing their games in Japan to have their content surveyed by the Western division of SIE. As explained by the developer of Silverio Trinity, all of the forms regarding the censorship policy are in English and Japanese developers either have to learn English or hire someone to fill out the forms for them. And yes, this is even for games that are released strictly in Japan and Asia.
According to Sony of Japan’s president, Atsushi Morita, the censorship policy wasn’t motivated by any particular reason, but he claimed that it was to match “global standards” as well as to shield “unpleasant” content from children.
Even with the hiccups that the petition suffered for unknown reasons, gamers are still intent on reaching out to Sony in an attempt to get the censorship policies reversed, especially since they’re being applied in uneven ways and affecting games aimed at mature audiences.
Hopefully the phone call will convince Sony UK to talk with the other higher ups at Sony who operate out of the California offices, as noted by the Wall Street Journal, and maybe it will result in the censorship policies being rolled back.
(Thanks for the news tip np complete)