Video games in China may face even tighter restrictions in the near future.
As reported by the South China Morning Post, the country’s internet regulator – the Cyberspace Administration of China – is proposing that all online services in the region have a “youth mode”. This would include video games, streaming platforms and social media.
In concrete terms, this means that Internet access providers would be required to limit the time that those under 18 devote to this type of service. Hardware manufacturers would also be required to have software limiting the time miners can spend on their products.
Comments on this bill close April 13.
This is the latest move in a sort of moral panic in China over the impact of technology and games on young people. Last year, a state-controlled newspaper called video games “spiritual opiate”. This was before tougher restrictions were proposed, including limitations on how long minors could spend playing games.
More than 200 companies in the region have signed a commitment to self-regulate in this regard.
In addition, the National Press and Publication Administration (NPPA) has introduced stricter regulations on what content can be allowed in video games in China for broadcast. This led to another release freeze and resulted in the closure of a large number of game companies.