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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Orlando, FL

    * Beware of Greeks playing video games

    In Greece, use a GameBoy go to jail
    By Matt Loney and Rupert Goodwins
    Staff Writers, CNET
    September 3, 2002, 11:18 AM PT

    In Greece, playing a shoot-'em up video game could land you in jail.
    The government there has banned all electronic games across the country, including those that run on home computers, on Game Boy-style portable consoles, and on mobile phones. Thousands of tourists in Greece are unknowingly facing heavy fines or long terms in prison for owning mobile phones or portable video games.

    Greek Law Number 3037, enacted at the end of July, explicitly forbids electronic games with 'electronic mechanisms and software' from public and private places, and people have already been fined tens of thousands of dollars for playing or owning games.

    The law applies equally to visitors from abroad: "If you know these things are banned, you should not bring them in," said a commercial attaché at the Greek Embassy in London, who declined to give her name.

    Internet cafes will be allowed to continue to operate, providing no games-playing takes place. If a customer is found to be running any sort of game, including online chess, the cafe owner will be fined and the place closed.

    The Greek government introduced the law in an attempt to prevent illegal gambling. According to a report in the Greek newspaper Kathimerini, Greek police will be responsible for catching offenders, who will face fines of 5,000 to 75,000 euros (about $4,980 to $74,650) and imprisonment of one to 12 months. "The blanket ban was decided in February after the government admitted it was incapable of distinguishing innocuous video games from illegal gambling machines," the report said.

    The Greek gaming community has reacted with a mixture of shock, disbelief and anger. One Web site,, has started a news service about the ban and opened a petition to protest it. In addition, it is posting English translations of the law and messages of support from around the world.

    A test case is to come before the Greek courts next week, and the Greek gaming community is already planning protests in the event that the defendant is convicted.

    "We are trying to organize a protest against this law," said Petros Tipis of Thessaloniki-based gaming company Reload Entertainment, which has had to cancel a gaming tournament that was to be held this week.

    If the prosecution of the defendant next week is successful, said Tipis, the Greek gaming industry will take the case to the European Court.

    In the meantime, Tipis told ZDNet UK, a lot of people in Greece are very worried about the new law. "They are taking it very seriously," he said. "It even affects the games that come with Windows. This law isn't the right one," he added. "It is unfair. It was introduced too quickly."

    Reload's tournament, which was to be held on Sept. 6, was a qualifier for the CPL Oslo 2002 gaming tournament. "Now we are trying not to lose the two slots we were given from CPL for the tournament," said Tipis. "This was the first time for a qualifier (for this tournament) in Greece."

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Glika Nera - Athens - Greece - Europe
    Greece is and always has been a load of crap. I live here, unfortunately, and besides good weather and sun this country is worthless. I am entitled to rule this as I AM greek and I was born and grew up here. A lot of people, like me, are fed up with corruption, the daily BS this dictatorship we have here (it sure as hell ain't no democracy).

    Here in Greece you are faced with a government that strives against it's people at all times in order for some "higher few" to be "King" here. I am sick of it!

    What you read above is true and another example of a country stripped of it's dignity by the lowlights that populate it. If you like to know, the reason why I am taking part in this business is that I don't have to take the **** here anymore


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Orlando, FL

    Now seriously, Greece is not a bad place to be. Unless you are dependent on the government to feed you and provide you with immaculate healthcare. NocSol, the healthcare here in the US blows chunks, the food is recycled junk (for lack of a worse word) and now we have terrorism to deal with plus the god-darned West Nile virus (30+ people dead so far).

    Trust me, you won't appreciate what you have until you spend a long time away from your country. The everyday life, as much mundane and boring or annoying as it might seem, contains gems that your eyes fail to recognize.

    For you, my friend, and for the benefit of our *cough* audience I close this inane ramble with Constantine Cavafy's "Ithaca":

    When setting out upon your way to Ithaca,
    wish always that your course be long,
    full of adventure, full of lore.
    Of the Laestrygones and of the Cyclopes,
    of an irate Poseidon never be afraid;
    such things along your way you will not find,
    if lofty is your thinking, if fine sentiment
    in spirit and in body touches you.
    Neither Laestrygones nor Cyclopes,
    nor wild Poseidon will you ever meet,
    unless you bear them in your soul,
    unless your soul has raised them up in front of you.

    Wish always that your course be long;
    that many there be of summer morns
    when with such pleasure, such great joy,
    you enter ports now for the first time seen;
    that you may stop at some Phoenician marts,
    to purchase there the best of wares,
    mother-of-pearl and coral, amber, ebony,
    hedonic perfumes of all sorts--
    as many such hedonic perfumes as you can;
    that you may go to various Egyptian towns
    to learn, and learn from those schooled there.

    Your mind should ever be on Ithaca.
    Your reaching there is your prime goal.
    But do not rush your journey anywise.
    Better that it should last for many years,
    and that, now old, you moor at Ithaca at last,
    a man enriched by all you gained upon the way,
    and not expecting Ithaca to give you further wealth.

    For Ithaca has given you the lovely trip.
    Without her you would not have set your course.
    There is no more that she can give.

    If Ithaca seems then too lean, you have not been deceived.
    As wise as you are now become, of such experience,
    you will have understood what Ithaca stands for.
    Last edited by Acroplex; 09-03-2002 at 07:56 PM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Glika Nera - Athens - Greece - Europe

    1) I LOVE Greece. I was born here. I grew up here. My friends and most family are here. I first fell in love here. I eat, **** and **** here

    2) The land as such is beautiful. The weather, the beaches, the light and everyhting.

    BUT: It is ruled by a bunch of scumbags, a class of a few hundred "chosen few" who think they can do what they want. They ruin this nice place and bring shame and riducule to a land which was not only TOP of the world but the ONLY democracy in times when everybody else, besides the folks in good ol' Hellas, threw stones at each other.

    That's why I am angry. We could be the BEST and we managed to become a joke... a greek word describes it best: TRAGEDY!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2000
    Tacoma, Washington
    It's disturbing any modern government of any description would produce a law so amazingly short sighted in this day and age - at least one not squarely in the gun sights of the US

    Greg Moore
    Former Webhost... now, just a guy.

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