China has established a new regulation that limits the playing time of online games among the country’s youth. Specifically, it prohibits those under the age of 18 from playing online games for more than 3 hours a week.
As reported by The Guardian, the new regulation that, according to the country, is necessary to eliminate what they consider to be an addiction to online video games among their young people. Although, the Chinese holidays are an exception, on which users can play for an additional hour.
According to state news agency Xinhua, “All online game companies can only provide minors with 1 hour of service from 20 to 21:00 every day on Friday, Saturday, Sunday and legal holidays. At other times, it is not allowed to provide online game services to minors in any form.“
The restriction will apply to all devices that can run a video game, including smartphones, which will deal a serious blow to the video game industry that is heavily dependent on China.
The responsibility for compliance with these standards will not fall on the parents of minors in China but will be on the developer companies, which must create strict control mechanisms to ensure that these measures are met.
To confirm that the ban is effective, the Chinese government indicated that it would “increase the frequency and intensity of inspections” of firms that offer access to this type of entertainment.
Tencent already implemented a system called Midnight Patrol, that uses facial recognition built into many smartphones to control the game addiction among underaged gamers.