China Introduces Gaming Curfew For Minors – Is This The Right Move?

Child holding stuffed animal over their shoulders
Photo by Kevin Mueller on Unsplash

The worst thing a kid can say about homework is that it is too hard. The worst thing a kid can say about a game is it’s too easy.”

Henry Jenkins

On November 5th, the Chinese government introduced its gaming curfew for minors. Chinese children are only allowed 90 minutes of game time on weekdays and 3 hours on weekends.

With so many ways to play video games, is China’s video game ban going to work?

The government seems to think so. The new rule is a preventative measure, ensuring young kids do not become addicted to video games. You know what they say start ’em early.

But the new curfew is only for online gaming networks, not all types of video games. In this case, I think the Chinese government is concerned about games like Fortnite and League of Legends, two games that show the worst of online gaming culture.

The online gaming culture is, for lack of a better term, toxic. Many online gamers become highly engrossed in the game and invest hundreds of dollars in loot boxes. It’s easy to become carried away when you can pay to win.

Online gamers can become rude and irritable if they don’t get their way. I suppose that can be for anyone, but missing a “wombo combo” isn’t worth losing your mind.

It’s still too early to say if the curfew will be effective in preventing video game addiction. I think this starts a conversation about parents roles in their child’s online gaming consumption. Parents and guardians should learn about the effects of online gaming addiction, and not leave them without blame.

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