- August 09, 2004

Dixons Will Not re-stock Manhunt Game

We reported last month on the video game Manhunt that was removed from stores after the murder of a 14 year-old boy in the UK. The victim's mother claimed that the game drove another teenager to stab her son to death after being repeatedly battered with a claw hammer. At the time, high street store Dixons were one of the first to remove the game from their shelves. Last week though, police in the UK stated that a link between the game Manhunt and the murder of the boy cannot be proved to exist. We spoke to Hamish Thompson, Head of Group Media Relations at Dixons Group PLC. He told us,

We won't be re-stocking Manhunt. We felt that it was appropriate to withdraw the game from sale having carefully weighed up the huge volume of feedback that we had received from customers. We accept that opinions will differ on whether this was the right action to take. We have received many letters from customers since we took the decision, many of which express disappointment, but an equal number of which support our decision."

Hamish Thompson continued,"This was an unusual step for us in what we believe were rather exceptional circumstances. We agree that is the responsibility of the ratings organisations to define what is and what is not appropriate content and we do not wish to - or intend to - interfere with that process. Our decision was taken in good faith out of sensitivity to the issues raised by many customers and the media.

Had we not withdrawn the game from sale we might well have been accused of profiting from the publicity generated." We wonder if any other stores will follow suit.

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