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Operators of gaming centres would have to write and file a policy on how they enforce game ratings at their establishments when applying for a business licence, under an ordinance being considered by a Detroit suburb.
Wracked by sensational news reports that have made the nation a caricature for games addiction, South Korea is imposing throttling and even six-hour blackouts on 19 MMOs comprising 79 per cent of the local market.
What would modern China be without campaigns? This one’s lacking in a snappy name and related propaganda, but the government is gearing up to go after those hotbeds of moral decay, crime, and WoW: internet cafes. Introducing “Operation for Tomorrow,” targeting unlicensed websites, internet cafes, and porn.
Despite governmental efforts to the contrary (gaming addiction ‘bootcamps,’ time-limiting systems and the like), China’s gaming population just refuses to be fenced in. The Chinese market is growing by leaps and bounds, which – unsurprisingly – is making the government just a wee bit skittish. Due to rampant piracy, lack of game ratings, and more illegal internet cafés than you can shake a stick at, the government is worried over reports of rising numbers of gaming addicts (and what they see as a related rise in juvenile crime). Will the fact that previous measures haven’t exactly had the desired effects mean that the CCP is going to throw their hands up in defeat? Of course not:
In a sweep designed to “clean up young people’s online environment,” police in the southern Chinese border city of Shenzhen uncovered 563 illegal Internet cafes, Xinhua said. The crackdown netted 1,407 computers, while 7 people were arrested and nearly 5,000 Internet accounts closed.
Shenzhen police in one case discovered 30 computers crammed into a 40-square meter room.
Other unregistered establishments were tucked in the upper floors of otherwise empty buildings. “This shows the difficulties the law enforcers face,” Xinhua noted.
Promising more crackdowns and more laws, the Chinese government is attempting to bite back. I’m just unconvinced it’s actually going to do anything other than flush out some illegal businesses and further bloat the bureaucracy.
Sure, we all know about internet cafes in Korea and China, how they are a mecca for online gamers. But what about internet cafes in Japan? In a country where console is king, do people game in internet cafes? Cross marketing Inc questioned folks about internet and comic cafes. The participants were divided 50/50 between males and females. Twenty percent were in their teens, twenty percent in their 20s, twenty percent in their 30s, twenty percent in their 40s and twenty percent in their 50s. Here’s the raw data. Hooray for numbers!
• Almost half had been to an internet or comic cafe • In a multiple answer poll about what they do at internet/comic cafes, 75 percent said they used the internet, 69.6 percent read manga, 33.8 percent eat or drink, 31.1 percent read magazines, 19.6 percent sleep, 16.2 percent watch DVDs, 11.5 percent play console games and 6.8 percent take a shower. (Yes, there are usually showers.) • Another multiple answer poll inquired what people do on the internet. 90.1 percent said they look at sites, 44.1 percent send and read email, 22.5 percent read bulletin boards, 21.6 percent work and 21.6 percent play online games. To put that in prespective, 19.8 percent update their own blog.
So, there you go. Don’t worry about Japanese people playing online games until they have heart attacks. Not likely to happen!
Internet Cafes [What Japan Thinks]
Someone really needs to tell the people in East Asian countries to stop gaming before they die. Maybe a free latte policy for the 100 or so patrons who fled the cybercafÃ© in Guangzhou this weekend after witnessing the death of the 30 year-old man who had been gaming for three days straight. Watching a person die from lack of common sense always makes me thirsty.
Paramedics quickly arrived on the scene but could not resuscitate the man. I know the loss of a human life is never a laughing matter, but I just cannot fathom gaming to death. Back in 2001, there where weeks when I would spend every waking hour playing EQ, but I at least took chair naps and tried my very best not to die. Worked for me. *sigh* Chinese Man Dies From 3-Day Gaming Binge [Fox News - Thanks Kris]
The Chinese government may not want kids playing it for hours, but Counter-Strike is good enough for police to play – as anti-terrorism training games. Over 300 members of the Tianjin police force took over an Internet cafe on Wednesday for a three-day competition (including a team of judges to ensure no one was ‘cheating’), and took to heart the mantra of “Enhancing police forces through technology”:
After the competition was announced in March, Zhang [Bin, one of the competition organizers]said, police officers were enthusiastic. Now almost half the total Tianjin force are regular players.
“Of course, they play, or should I say train, after work,” he added.
Officers reported noticeable improvement in self-protection on field missions after the play, Han said, stressing the game was only “a supplement to their traditional means of training.”
Now all they need is an outpost in Second Life to recruit officers, and they’ll be in business.
Counter-Strike, China police’s latest tool of anti-terrorism [People's Daily Online]