China Wants to Impose a Midnight Internet Curfew for Gamers Under 18

Chinese parents who are peeved about their children playing video games late at night might never have to fret again.

According to, the Chinese government is looking into imposing a ban on teens under 18-years-old who are still playing video games between 12 a.m. to 8 a.m. The new proposed ban will reportedly be introduced next month at an annual political meeting.

In China, the gaming industry is massive and makes around $30 billion per year. In fact, the country is the biggest video game market in the world.

This virtual arena is also populated and accessed by roughly about 170 million Chinese teenagers. So, with the number of teens online everyday, the government wants to see them “protected”.

“The proportion of young internet users in China is relatively high,” said juvenile crime specialist Hu Faqing. “One of the reasons children and teenagers go online is to learn things, so the online environment needs to be perfected.”

Professor Tao Hongkai, who is an anti-gaming advocate, described these games as “opium.” He emphasized that many teens get so hooked that they go without sleeping, skip schools, and forget eating on time.

Many players in China are already required to show their ID’s to be able to register and play at gaming sites. The government would make it compulsory for computers and smartphones to install a software that would keep track of the teen’s activity. It will also be able to identify minors who are still online and shut them off when they exceed their curfew.

However, many believe that this new law will not work, or at the very least, won’t be strongly implemented.

Image via Flickr / faungg (CC BY-ND 2.0)

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