Ahead of Panorama’s ‘Addicted to Games?’ broadcast next Monday, video games trade body UKIE has highlighted the lack of any scientific evidence linking video games to addiction.
“There is no official medical diagnosis of video game addiction, either from the American Medical Association or the World Health Organization,” director general Michael Rawlinson, who was interviewed for the programme but does not yet know if he will feature, said in a statement released to MCV.
“Playing games is a hobby – just like reading, listening to music or playing a sport – that millions of people around the world engage in safely every day. We know that most people use games as part of a balanced lifestyle.
Indeed, the fear is that Panorama will focus on a handful of excessive cases and neglect the wider state of gaming in modern Britain.
“In the UK, 55 per cent of gamers aged 16-49 play for 1-5 hours a week, with only 12 per cent playing in excess of 10 hours a week,” Rawlinson added.
“UKIE is aware of some individuals that play games excessively but often the causes of many of the sad cases that we hear about are down to other underlying medical, social or environmental issues concerning the individuals concerned.”
“UKIE continues to monitor any research developments on the issue of excessive gaming and will welcome reviewing any conclusive new research. Any new research undertaken should be as balanced as possible. Therefore any research undertaken should ideally be independent of the games industry and any other bodies that may have an interest in the results.”