Report: Chinese Government Creating Criteria for Online Gaming Addiction

According to a report from Xinhuanet (as reported on by Shanghaiist), the Chinese government is developing its own set of criteria for early diagnosis of online game addiction in young people. Chinese authorities announced plans on Sunday to develop "China-specific criteria" for diagnosing and treating online gaming addiction in minors.

According to the report, the government is doing this to avoid "misdiagnosis" due to using data from outside sources. Apparently they want a program that is tailored to its culture. This comes from a special "workplan jointly issued by 15 ministry-level authorities." The plan calls on researchers in China to develop tools to identify the early stages of potential addiction, which in turn can enable early intervention.

Online gaming is big business in China, but it is subject to the whims of the Chinese government, who is not afraid of creating new laws to limit access to groups – like young people – that it deems to be vulnerable. China's online gaming industry took in revenue worth 24.84 billion yuan ($4 billion USD) in the first half of 2012. According to data from the China Internet Network Information Center, the country's online gaming population was at around 330 million as of last June, with 150 million of those users below the age of 19.

Source: Kotaku

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