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Gaming addiction classified as disorder by World Health Organization(WHO)

Gaming addiction classified as disorder by World Health Organization(WHO)

The talk of mental health is serious, and deserves careful discussion about issues that really do affect people’s daily lives.Increasing interests in games can destroy mental and physical health. Because of this, the World Health Organisation(WHO) is adding gaming addiction to their list of verified mental disorders. We have reported their findings back in December, but it looks like not everyone is on board with their approach to mental health and its connection to gaming.

WHO is paying more attention in saving future of new and coming generations. They ask answer from Entertainment Software Association(ESA).

The Entertainment Software Association (ESA) has officially released a new statement regarding the latest addition and we can’t help but to pay attention. The ESA is made up of some of the industry’s most influential publishers, and they are crying foul play saying that WHO is “recklessly” toying with real mental illness in order to push their gaming addition addition. This is what the ESA had to say:

“Just like avid sports fans and consumers of all forms of engaging entertainment, gamers are passionate and dedicated with their time. Having captivated gamers for more than four decades, more than 2 billion people around the world enjoy video games.”

“The World Health Organization knows that common sense and objective research prove video games are not addictive. And, putting that official label on them recklessly trivializes real mental health issues like depression and social anxiety disorder, which deserve treatment and the full attention of the medical community. We strongly encourage the WHO to reverse direction on its proposed action.”


The WHO goes on to associate numerous factors, “from the frequency of gaming, mobile games and softwares etc. from the amount of time spent on these activities, from the neglect of other activities and priorities, from risky behaviors associated with gaming or its context, from the adverse consequences of gaming, or from the combination of these,” as contributing to said increased risk.But it is necessary to pay more attention on these topics and can’t take it lightly or should be neglected.

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The timing of this medical designation is not too surprising, as numerous physical and mental health concerns have become more present and discussed in recent years. From Korean internet cafe customers playing games to the point of severe exhaustion or death, to heightened oversight of videogame consumption in Japan and China, to the increasingly raucous debate around the exploitative, addictive nature of blind loot boxes, the WHO recognized the crises that are present and that could be prevented in the future.

Recently, the World Health Organization made the decision to classify excessive and uncontrollable gaming as a mental health disorder. This decision sparked some outrage in the gaming community, as some felt as though it painted gaming in

a negative light. Along with many gamers, the Entertainment Software Association has spoken out against the World Health Organization’s decision, insisting that video games are not addictive.


The ESA, which is the entity that created the ESRB, released a statement on the matter:

The ESA states that “common sense and objective research prove video games are not addictive.” On the contrary, there is no shortage of evidence that shows video games can be addictive. In fact, virtually anything that brings someone pleasure can be addictive, so saying “video games are not addictive” is just a blatant lie. Furthermore, there are plenty of stories of people choosing video games over more important things in their lives, or even playing video games until they died, which is clearly indicative of a serious mental health issue.

In that, internet gaming disorder is listed as a “condition for further study”, meaning it is not officially recognised.
Lots of countries are grappling with the issue and in South Korea the government has introduced a law banning access for children under 16 from online games between midnight and 06:00.

In Japan, players are alerted if they spend more than a certain amount of time each month playing games and in China, internet giant Tencent has limited the hours that children can play its most popular games.
The research – looking at children aged eight to 18 – found that boys spent longer playing video games than girls.

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Researcher Killian Mullan said: “People think that children are addicted to technology and in front of these screens 24/7, to the exclusion of other activities – and we now know that is not the case.”

Actually it is an effective step by World Health Organization(WHO) looking at the future of the new and coming generations. Most of the children involved rapidly towards games and softwares more than physical games.Hope this may change the future of the coming generation.



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