A recent trend among websites for games that have a “M for Mature” (or similar) rating is the use of age gates. These gates require the user to enter their birth date before they can view information on the subject in question. Usually, the user is presented with three pull down menus: one for the month, one for the day, and one for the year. From a legal perspective, I can understand why companies want to use this feature. But who are these gates really keeping out? Every kid should know that by providing an old enough date, they can gain access to the site. After all, this isn’t rocket science.
Every time I visit a website with one of these gates, I enter the most ridiculous date possible by selecting the oldest year offered (usually 1900). Maybe if enough people enter ridiculous dates every time, this annoying website ‘feature’ will go away.