China has introduced a new regulation limiting gaming time for young people in the country. Specifically, it prohibits children under 18 years of age from playing for more than 3 hours a week.
The video game culture has spread throughout the world. In some countries, such as China, this hobby is seen as a distraction for young people. Now it is demonstrating this with a new regulation that restricts young people.
China has banned people under 18 from playing video games for more than 3 hours a week. A new regulation that, according to the country, is necessary to eliminate what they consider to be video game addiction among their young people.
Even the Chinese executive has come to describe this fondness for video games as “spiritual opium”. The restriction will apply to all devices that can run a video game, including smartphones, which will be a blow to the video game industry that depends heavily on China.
No more than 3 hours a week
The new regulation starts to be enforced from today and the idea is that under-18s will only be allowed to play for one hour a day and only on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. The state news agency Xinhua details the schedules: from 8 pm to 9 pm. Holidays will also have one hour of play allowed.
These regulations have been promoted by the NPPA, the National Press, and Publication Administration. According to a spokesperson for the association, this measure seeks to ensure that young people remain “the future of our homeland. The protection of the physical and mental health of minors is related to the vital interests of the people and is related to the cultivation of the younger generation in the era of national rejuvenation.”
And there is more. In addition to all this, minors are obliged to register with their real names, and in relation to this, the limitations are also imposed on companies, which will have to implement systems that verify that young people have indeed put their real name in the nickname of the online video games they use.
These companies will also be limited. They will not be able to provide services related to video games outside the hours stipulated by the government, including the possibility of allowing them to play if they have already fulfilled their 3-hour quota. They will also seek to include time limits for users, although the control systems they will impose are not detailed.
This is not the first time China has implemented such limits. Already in 2019, it was established that people under 18 could play for an hour and a half any day and 3 hours on holidays. Therefore, this new regulation is significantly more restrictive than the previous one.
The NPPA also announced that business inspections of video game companies in China would increase in both intensity and frequency to ensure that they comply with the regulations.
According to an analysis by the company Newzoo, the video game market in China is expected to generate some 45.6 billion dollars by 2021. According to state media, 62.5% of minors in China play online, and 13.2% of underage users play mobile games for more than two hours a day on weekdays.
As expected, both on Twitter and on Weibo, China’s alternative social network, users have expressed their dissatisfaction with the measures, especially about the drastic nature of the measures. Doubts have also been raised about how the Chinese government will control young people.