Last year around E3, a huge campaign got under way in order to ask Nintendo to end region-locking. President Satoru Iwata never addressed the campaign specifically, but stated there were specific reasons why the company would not end region locking for the Wii U and the Nintendo 3DS. Currently the Wii U is the only home console on the market that experiences region lock restrictions, as both the Xbox One and the PlayStation 4 are region free machines.
Members of the NeoGAF forums have revived the region-free movement again this year under the #NintendoRegionFree 2014 hashtag and across several websites. If you’re a supporter of Nintendo consoles and handhelds being offered across the world region-free, then it might behoove you to support these efforts. As stated by the main thread where the organization takes place, the goal is to get Iwata to acknowledge region-locking has more detrimental effects than benefits.
Region-locking IS a restriction, and such an anti-consumer practice has no place in luxury products. Other platform holders have dropped region-locking despite the same cultural, legal, and ratings issues.
What we want is to be able to play legally-purchased games for Nintendo platforms purchased from anywhere in the world, irregardless of any hardware region setting. If parental controls are a concern, access to out-of-region titles can simply be disabled by default and enabled by adults.
If you want to support the movement, there are several things you can do. The first is to sign this petition. Currently it has around 30k signatures and it’s the main petition to be presented to Nintendo as proof that customers around the globe want access to region-free devices.
The campaign has also set up a Facebook page, as well as a Twitter account, @EndRegionLock. If you want to contact Nintendo directly about the issue, there are several places to do so, including many official Nintendo Twitter accounts where you can let them know that you don’t want region-locking to continue. Remember to be polite and non-abusive in your requests, otherwise you’ll just be blocked.
Nintendo Twitter Accounts
The community is active on Miiverse as well, posting several drawings and posts describing how region-lock affects users directly. You can check out those posts and Yeah! them on Miiverse to let Nintendo that you the messages that the author has written. These messages are being written in the official Nintendo @ E3 Miiverse community, so be sure and check there if you want to see what people are contributing to the cause of getting Nintendo to end region-locking one and for all.
Remember, just because it doesn’t affect you doesn’t mean it isn’t a cause worth fighting for. Nintendo is currently the only manufacturer with a region-locked current-gen console.