5 December 2011

Online gaming and our kids

My children are in the midst of their almost 2 months school holidays, and my stay home wife is getting the brunt of it.

What do the kids do at home? Watch tv and play games. Watch tv and play more games.

For tv, they are hooked into Korean and HK dramas through starhub paid services. They claimed that it is helping them practise their mandarin when they listened to the dialogues and read the sub titles. Current title - Korean production, My Bittersweet Life.

For gaming, they are into Temple Run on the iPhone and the Tetris game (now with a new name where you can challenge online friends). Facebook games are also part of their daily staple and takes up a large part of their waking hours.

Harmless games? Maybe. But when they seduce you into spending many hours on it to level up and dress your hero/heroines - think again. I've recently attended a talk by Touch Community on Online gaming and it really opened my eyes into this online world of MMORG, role playing games, etc.

Our kids at home are at risk - boys and also girls. It is subtle. It sucks you in through role playing, letting you be who you can never be in real life - like a princess or superhero. There are many friends online and they don't bully you or put you down. You can easily level up and achieve significance that this world don't easily gives you.

In a word - dangerous. As parents we need to know what they are doing and educate ourselves on it and warn them of such dangers.

As Christian parents, we need to pray for them as they are fighting an oft losing battle as online games are now the mainstream and they will be seen as weirdos if they are not into it too.

Be warned.

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