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S. Korea tries to curb kids' gaming

[ 2010-04-15 10:45]     字号 [] [] []  
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South Korea plans to cut off online video games at midnight for school-age children and allow parents to set limits on playing hours to curb problems of Internet gaming addiction in the world's most wired country.

The case in March of parents whose infant daughter starved to death while they were playing games on the Internet raised concerns in the country about gaming addiction and calls for the government to act.

Under the plan announced this week by the culture ministry, computer game companies were asked to put in place voluntary restrictions by the end of the year to cut down the hours children play games.

South Korea, which has one of the world's highest rates of high-speed broadband connections in homes, is also saturated with PC rooms where gamers spend long hours in front of computer monitors.

Internet gaming would be denied from midnight to about 8 a.m. for school-aged children. Several game providers have already imposed restrictions.

"Users can select a special server that gives them incentives for cutting down on their gaming time," said Kim Kun-woo of NC Soft, a leading South Korean gaming company.

To enforce the measures, the government has called on game providers to monitor the national identity numbers of users, which include their ages, while allowing parents to see if their IDs were used by children playing after hours.

"The policy provides a way for parents to supervise their children's game playing," said Lee Young-ah, an official at the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism. The ministry has also asked game companies to find ways to cap the hours that adults play.


(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

S. Korea tries to curb kids' gaming

About the broadcaster:

S. Korea tries to curb kids' gaming

Nelly Min is an editor at China Daily with more than 10 years of experience as a newspaper editor and photographer. She has worked at major newspapers in the U.S., including the Los Angeles Times and the Detroit Free Press. She is fluent in Korean and has a 2-year-old son.