Researchers question the efficiency of Chinese game time restriction policy

Chinese restriction policies bear no result as per reports!

For those unaware, the Chinese government rolled down some serious regulatory measures in the form of a restriction policy to speculate and regulate the screen and game time of teenagers in the Chinese gaming industry. The aim of the anti-addiction rules was to limit internet and screentime usage for gaming, however, according to recent studies conducted by researchers, the effect of the policies has been minimal. The study found no evidence that China’s online game time limit reduced lengthy playing.

Researchers have found zero correlation between the policy and its intended target

According to the report, The researchers from universities in the UK and Denmark conducted their own research studies based on the gaming statistics from US game engine developer Unity, the developers generated 7 billion USD in revenue from total minutes played in 2019-2020, and out of that 2.06 billion came from mainland China. The researchers took a sample from their financial year 2020 and formed their research based on certain assumptions.

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Image via GamingonPhone

The sample has no age criterion, hence the data received was a mix between all ages and genders. The assumption was taken, to consider the developers, in this case, Unity to be equally popular compared to other developers in the country to form an accurate result in the end.

The researchers in their studies found out that before the Chinese Government introduced the game time mandate, “0.77 percent of the profiles they observed engaged in heavy play”. After the mandate was introduced, the numbers became, “0.88 percent of the total profiles”.

Researchers rule behavioral changes as the undermining reason behind long game time

Now simply seeing the percentage numbers might suggest that the overall numbers increased resulting in a negative correlation on the overall trend. However, percentages alone are not the most accurate criterion to be considered when forming an opinion as percentages are only helpful when the total population is the same and the total population of this experiment is not clearly mentioned for the periods of study conducted.

A more reasonable and reliable piece of the study was conducted when the researchers conducted a trend analysis and tried to understand the driving factors behind game time among teenagers. The result was quite astounding, the researchers found no solid impact on the previous trend. The researchers stated that the game time is the result of a behavioral pattern of the players and hence just the regulatory rules from the side of the government won’t suffice in limiting the game time.

Chinese gaming industry rules Chinese restriction policy
Chinese game time restriction policy has fallen flat (Image via Unsplash)

The researchers added “broadly scoped restriction policies … may be ineffective at causing intended changes to behavior” and concluded their research on the topic. Hence it can be concluded that the mandate did not have much effect on the targeted outcome and the situation remains more or less the same as before. The government should take the learnings from the result into consideration and come up with better ideas to implement the needful.

It is clear that the young population is adept at finding alternative solutions such as making fake IDs with different ages to alter the mandate and keep on playing. The government should come up with better and more creative ideas if they really wish to limit game time and cure the addictiveness of internet addiction among its youngest citizens.

What are your thoughts on the research regarding the Chinese game time restriction policy? Let us know in the comments below!

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