China has ‘solved’ youth addiction to video games

China has “resolved” the problem youth addiction to video gamesaccording to a report co-authored by China’s gaming industry committee, a year after Beijing limited the number of hours teenagers can spend gaming.

China is the largest global video game market in the world, but the industry dubbed “spiritual opiumby state media, is, like technology, a victim of regulatory restrictions.

“Less than three hours”

Since September 2021, under 18s are only allowed to play online between 8:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays during the school term. Consequently, “more than 75% of minors play less than three hours a week, and gambling addiction has been almost solvedaccording to the report published on Monday (November 21st) by the China Gaming Industry Committee, a government-affiliated body, and Chinese data provider CNG.

Addiction systems adopted by game companies cover more than 90% of minors who play video games“, according to the report. In China, about 98% of people aged 9 to 19 own a mobile phone and the country has some 186 million Internet users aged 18 or younger, the same source said.

New marketing licenses

Players are required to use their ID card when registering to play online to ensure that minors do not lie about their age. Companies are also prohibited from offering games to young people outside government-sanctioned hours.

But recent signs show that Beijing is softening its stance on this sector. Authorities have slowly started granting new game marketing licenses, after freezing them for nine months, until April. Last week, the tech giant Tencent obtained its first video game license for 18 months, which had weakened its position as world number one.

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