19th-leland-yee.jpgThe U.S. Supreme Court is expected to rule this morning on a state law banning the sale of violent video games to children.

The 2005 law, authored by state Sen. Leland Yee, D-San Francisco, bars the sale and rental of games that depict ultra-violent injury to humans to people younger than 18 years old.

Video game manufacturers would be required to review each game under the law and label those considered ultra-violent with an “18” sticker.

The Video Software Dealers Association, now part of the Entertainment Merchants Association, filed a federal lawsuit to block the law after its passage, and the U.S. District Court for Northern California struck it down in August 2007. The state appealed, but the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the ruling in 2009.

The law has been viewed as a test case for First Amendment protections for the video game industry, with manufacturers arguing they should be allowed the same protections as producers of books, films and other forms of media.

Yee, who is also a candidate for San Francisco mayor, will hold a news conference this morning in the Hiram Johnson State Building’s foyer, located at 455 Golden Gate Ave. in San Francisco, in response to the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling. It is scheduled to begin at 9:30 a.m.

Sara Gaiser, Bay City News

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