Killing in the game of …

A sad story: according to a Dutch newspaper a youngster in South Korea killed his mother over complaining about him being addicted to playing computer games. Then he killed himself. This is another case in an increasing strain of cases involving gaming addiction.

A similar case occurred early 2010 when a man killed his mother over her constant nagging about his computer gaming. Also early 2010, a couple’s baby starved to death because its parents were too busy raising a virtual baby online, according to the Korea Times. This has led to the South Korean government announcing action to curtail people playing computer games or surfing the Internet. Whether this action already took place, I doubt it. I’d be interested to learn about its effectiveness.

Although this seems to make computer gaming a suspect activity, there are millions of people that do not have these problems. Most likely there are some predispositions that make some people more susceptible to acquiring addictions. Anyhow, these cases attract a lot of media attention but maybe statistically not that different from deaths involving watching television or driving a car. Mind you, it is still very sad when people decide to resolve a conflict in the most physical way there is.

I’m not an expert on this matter of addiction. However in the Netherlands you have Jeroen Jansz and Jeroen Lemmens as experts.

Published by

Maurice Vergeer

Associate professor, Radboud University