China Cuts Time Minors Can Spend on Online Games

On Monday, Chinese regulator slashed the amount of time players under the age of 18 can spend on online games. Those under the age of 18 can now only spend an hour playing online games on Fridays, weekends and holidays. The new regulation is in response to growing concerns over gaming addiction, Xinhua News Agency reported.

The rules were published by the National Press and Publication Administration. The agency’s spokesperson said online games are interactive and easy to access, which makes them more attractive to younger audiences. Minors’ ability to control their time is relatively weak so they are easily susceptible to squandering their time.

The agency said that it would strictly implement a real-name registration and login requirements for user accounts for online games. Users who have not registered and logged in with their real name shall not be given gaming permissions. Publishing management departments at all levels shall supervise the implementation of relevant measures to prevent minors from indulging in online games.

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The National Press and Publication Administration noted that the reason why there is such a small amount of time allocated for minors is that some teachers and parents report that moderate contact with games of minors is acceptable, especially some sports games, programming, chess, and Go, which can have positive effects on teenagers.

According to the notice, it is necessary to actively guide families, schools and other social sectors to create a good environment for the healthy growth of minors.