Youth under 16 banned from late-night gamingTo combat online gaming addiction among minors, the cabinet has passed a revised ordinance of the Juvenile Protection Law that will ban those under the age of 16 from playing online games from midnight to 6 a.m.
The Ministry of Gender Equality and Family announced yesterday that the shutdown policy will go into effect on Nov. 20 for online games, while there will be a two-year grace period for mobile and console games, as gaming addictions on these platforms are not seen to be as serious.
At the request of the Korea Association of Game Industry and the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, the new ordinance excludes online games that are provided for free and do not request personal information, such as Blizzard Entertainment’s StarCraft 1. These games are difficult to regulate as they do not require players’ resident registration numbers. Social games played on sites such as Facebook are also excluded.
The Family Ministry will evaluate the games excluded from the shutdown policy for one year to decide whether to include them in the future and will hold further evaluations every two years.
A Family Ministry official advised parents to make use of the “played games confirmation” service, which allows parents to see whether their registration numbers have been used by their children to play online games.
By Yim Seung-hye [email@example.com]
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