China now lets parents control kids access to online games

first_imgWhile most of us enjoy playing games regularly, we know when to stop and go do something else. That’s a bit harder to do when you’re playing online games when there’s always something you can be doing and your party needs you there.In China, online gaming is huge and it can lead to a lot of gamers spending every waking minute online, therefore neglecting their education, jobs, and in some cases even their health. This addiction is a growing problem, and the Chinese government is trying to figure out ways to control it.For younger gamers, the responsibility is now being placed on the parents to monitor their time playing games. To support this the Ministry of Public Security has issued new rules that come into being on March 1.These rules state that a parent should be able to monitor and control their child’s gaming wherever they choose to play. So a parent can put in place time limits and spending limits on a per weekly or monthly basis.The problem with this is anyone operating a gaming establishment has to support the system, which requires logging the identity of the child gamer and associating it with registered parents or guardians. That gamer’s time and spending then needs to monitored and limited when appropriate. All that additional work will cost money and staff time which the companies running these places will have to pick up.For young gamers who spend double-digit hours a week playing games, it’s going to come as a shock. The guidelines from the Chinese government are that anyone classed as a child shouldn’t be playing more than two hours a week online, or spending more than 10 yuan ($1.50) a month.Read more at AFP, image courtesy of The TelegraphMatthew’s OpinionIf you are a family in China who already has a child spending too much time at the local online gaming establishment, this is going to be a welcome new system. Sure, it will make the kid very angry when they get cut off automatically, but if it helps get their attention back on school, sports, and remaining healthy, it’s worth it.For others, it will seem like yet more restrictions in a country already heavy regulated and controlled by the government. This is a parental control rather than government led, but this new set of data that needs to be stored per person could be used by the government too.Gaming establishments have no choice but to accept the new rules or most likely get shutdown. It will be a rush to get the system implemented before March 1, and in doing so they may see a big decline in revenue as they are forced to cut access to some of their most profitable young gamers.last_img

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