China: Plan to wean kids off video games succeeds

BEIJING: China is the world’s largest video gaming market, but the Chinese government has taken a step that has killed more than 75 percent of young children from this habit.

A year ago, the government imposed strict bans on video game playing among children under the age of 18 to curb their addiction to video games, limiting them to three days of the week: Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Online video game playing was allowed only from 8 to 9 pm.

A year after the ban, China’s top government committee on video gaming industry and data provider CNG released a very encouraging report on Monday. Video game addiction has largely been curbed due to set playing hours, and now more than 75 percent of teens play less than three hours of video games a week.

According to the report, about 98 percent of people between the ages of 9 and 19 in China have some kind of mobile phone and there are about 186 million Internet users aged 18 and under. More than 90 percent of teens who play video games are covered under the companies’ anti-video game ban system.

Video game players in China are now required to use their ID cards and must register and verify that they are not lying about their age before playing online games.

Gaming providers also provide video gaming services to teenagers within government-mandated hours, but in recent days there have been signs that Beijing is softening its stance on the video gaming sector. has been and the authorities have now slowly started the process of approving the new name after freezing the registration for nine months till April.

Just last week, technology giant Tencent received its first video game license in 18 months, a move that saw Tencent, considered the world’s top video game developer, on the brink of losing its position due to restrictions.

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