China's National Press and Publication Administration has moved to limit gaming time for children. Adding onto already established limits, Chinese children can now only play online video games for a single hour on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
The NPPA claims that this limit is to improve “the physical and mental health of minors”. However, according to a new study, this harsh gaming limit will have an adverse effect on the happiness and education of children.
Harsh gaming limits won't help children
Released by The Chartered institute for IT, it's stated that the Chinese government’s attack on gaming is an “unworkable” reality. The study says that “parents, not the state, should regulate gaming time”, shunning the country's techno-parenting.
Institute Professor Andy Phippen explains that modern video games have proved to help childrens’ education. Minecraft and Roblox are examples of games that improve interest in STEM (science, technology engineering and mathematics). The removal of these games will undo the growing education of millions of children.
The Institute does not outright disregard the issue of gaming addiction. However, the study claims that parents should instead be more involved in learning about screen time and wellbeing. Instead of allowing government bodies to parent children, parents should attempt to learn.
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Will these rules spread elsewhere?
In the report, Professor Andy Phippen claims that the United Kingdom could introduce these rules in the future. While the UK isn't at that point of regulation yet, evidence suggests that its closer than what is comfortable.
Phippen notes that former Health Secretary Matt Hancock wanted to regulate children on social media. The professor writes: “While we are a little way off this in the UK... [it’s] not such a massive step to see government-mandated screen time here in the UK which makes me concerned.”
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