International Proposal Aims To Make Hardcore Gaming A Health Disorder
(Last Updated On: February 1, 2017)

A new proposal in the ICD-11 categorization for the World Health Organization wants to add hardcore gaming to the list as a potential health risk and mental disease. The ICD-11 stands for the International Classification of Diseases.

The ICD-11 beta draft lists “Gaming Disorder” under the “Mental or behavioral disorder” section, under title 6D71, classifying it alongside schizophrenia, cocaine addiction, opiate addiction, alcoholism, MDMA use and gambling addiction, amongst others.  It states on the WHO international website

“Gaming disorder is manifested by a persistent or recurrent gaming behaviour (i.e., ‘digital gaming’ or ‘video-gaming’) characterised by an impaired control over gaming, increasing priority given to gaming over other activities to the extent that gaming takes precedence over other interests and daily activities and continuation of gaming despite the occurrence of negative consequences.”

Technically, due to the amount of practice and time required to play video games, this would make all professional e-sports competitors mentally diseased, if we were going by the ICD-11 proposal of how they label “Gaming disorder” a health risk.

This was accompanied by factors that could perpetuate the “Gaming disorder”, such as “Hazardous gaming”, where they state on the site

“Hazardous gaming refers to a pattern of gaming, either online or offline, that appreciably increases the risk of harmful physical or mental health consequences to the individual or to others around this individual. The increased risk may be from the frequency of gaming, from the amount of time spent on these activities, from the neglect of other activities and priorities, from risky behaviours associated with gaming or its context, from the adverse consequences of gaming, or from the combination of these”

The research attached to how these conclusions about hardcore gaming were reached isn’t properly clarified. In fact, there’s no real long-term research studies to back up claims that hardcore gaming is a mental health risk.

Sad Gamers

Moreover, 26 scholars wrote a rebuttal in an open letter to the WHO that you can read over on Research Gate. They essentially explain…

“The empirical basis for a Gaming Disorder proposal, such as in the new ICD-11, suffers from fundamental issues. Our main concerns are the low quality of the research base, the fact that the current operationalization leans too heavily on substance use and gambling criteria, and the lack of consensus on symptomatology and assessment of problematic gaming.”

The scholars protest the inclusion of “Gaming disorder” in the ICD-11 proposal, which could have seriously adverse effects on the gaming industry, including increased regulation and prohibitory measures put into place, similar to what happened in South Korea when video games were labeled as one of the “four evils” along with alcoholism, gambling, and drug addiction. Lots of government regulation hampered the growth of industrial enterprise in South Korea, despite the consumer market still being on the rise.

The open letter makes this exact point, stating…

“The act of formalizing this disorder, even as a proposal, has negative medical, scientific, public-health, societal and human rights fallout that should be considered. Of particular concern are moral panics around the harm of video gaming.”

This comes shortly after various lobbyist groups have been trying to get new sanctions implemented regarding females and sexualization being depicted in video games, something that activists Zoe Quinn and Anita Sarkeesian took to the United Nations, resulting in the U.N., attempting to pressure Japan to censor anime and video games made within the region and exported globally. Japan declined, as reported by Niche Gamer.

Attempting to make institutional categorizations on an entertainment medium based on “feelings” as opposed to hard facts is not something that reputable scholars and academics appreciate. Hence, the scholar rebuttal further states…

“Furthermore, the proposed categories are likely to be met with significant skepticism and controversy by both the scholarly community and the general public, doing harm to the reputation of the WHO and the medical community more generally. This would dramatically reduce the utility of such a diagnosis, in particular as it is not grounded in a proper evidence base. There is no substantial difference between gaming and most other forms of entertainment, and pathologizing one form of entertainment opens the door to diagnoses involving sport, dancing, eating, sex, work, exercise, gardening, etc, potentially leading to a saturation of behavioral disorders.”

The deadline to consider “Gaming disorder” as a mental health disease in ICD-11 is March 30th, 2017.

(Thanks for the news tip(s) Professor Ferguson & anons)


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About

Billy has been rustling Jimmies for years covering video games, technology and digital trends within the electronics entertainment space. The GJP cried and their tears became his milkshake. Need to get in touch? Try the Contact Page.

  • MusouTensei

    I know I sound like a broken record but what else can I say? Fuck the UN, and fuck the WHO.

  • durka durka

    “attempting to pressure Japan to censor anime and video games made within the region and exported globally. Japan declined”

    Wait that happened?

    • MusouTensei

      Yeah, but japan said “fuck off”, with the reason that it would ohave too many negative effects on women in japan, who often work in fields that depict women in the polar opposite of Bioware. Many women would lose their jobs there.

      • I remember reading a brief statement of Japan’s response that focused on pushing the point that the characters were fictional.

        Regardless, the “negative effects on women in japan” reason is a pretty good one that does shut them up.

        • MusouTensei

          Yeah that was another reason too.

    • lol, you been living under a rock bro? Sarkeesian and Quinn going to the UN was all over the news. Shortly thereafter their women division wanted to crack down on gaming, starting with Japan. Japan made multiple statements refuting and rejecting the U.N’s request, as mentioned by MusouTensei and GamesGoodmeGood, Japan mentioned that too many of their female employees rely on work from the anime and gaming industry, and axing that kind of content would only hurt their economy and a lot of the jobs occupied by female workers.

  • Alistair

    If WHO is very serious about this, I say this thinking fictional characters as real is in itself a mental disorder and SJWs got that by a bucket load.

    This is a last ditch attempt to destroy Male gaming culture but also destroy all other gaming that people enjoy, besides i dont think it would happen.

    The video games industry wont allow it, and anything that hinder the economy that in turn cause rescission wont be allowed.

    • As much as I would love to agree… a bunch of tards working in the gaming industry jumped on the whole “gamers are sexist/misogynists” and started appealing to actual SJW retards. Sales tanked bad in 2016, all to the publishers’ own detriment because those scum-sucking pieces of half-bred donkey dung didn’t realize that most of us have a back catalog and we don’t have to buy their half-arsed jackspit for $60 to not be entertained.

      I wouldn’t put it past the spittle-shined shoes of a hooked nose Shylock working at the AAA industry to kowtow even to the WHO’s fickle-follied pandering to mentally inept SJWs and their classification of gaming as a mental disorder, all while the industry itself goes down in a plume of financial flames.

      • Alistair

        Not all devs are, the ones that got a Axe to grind are most western Devs, not putting rockstar in that boat, and some Japanese devs too.

        When the day finally comes and the industry sinks it wont be gamers but devs that suppose to do it for profit how can you make fucking profit if you knottow to them, and gamers boycott the games.

        Are we watching another suicide, that they want the industry that paves they pockets line to go belly up.

    • The video games industry wont allow it

      Actually, it already has to a large degree. I cannot think of any big Western developer that doesn’t push the SJW-feminist garbage or have spoken out against the SJWs.

      As soon as the SJWs complain about something, the developers have caved:

      – Lionhead Studio’s deletion of that boob/beer image
      – Blizzard’s removal of the Tracer pose, and the insertion of SJW gender politics
      – Obsidian’s removal of that Tranny joke
      – Bioware’s peddling of SJW propaganda with the NPC
      – NetherRealm Studio’s censoring of their female characters with “realistic” body depictions and less skin on show
      – Larian Studio’s censoring of female character on the cover of Divinity: Original Sin
      – Forgot the company name but they censored female android Cortana after SJW whining

      And I’m sure there are many more examples.

      They’ve pretty much all kowtowed to Anita Sarkeesian and her mob of cretins.

  • I see this as an attack on another sector of male culture, because the vast majority of hardcore gamers are male.

    I can guarantee you that they would not even touch the issue if gaming was a female-dominated culture. Because you know, men = bad, women = good.

    Anyway, if this actually passes, it will provide the best ammo for SJWs, feminists, religious retards and moralfags to further make their case that video games are “harmful” in “sexist”, “violent”, and “immoral” ways. They can then just easily point to this would-be classification of a heath disorder in answer to their critics.

    And of course, the normies, sheeple and parents will suck it all up with no question.

  • bob

    god damn i seriously hate the UN. Can’t wait for Trump to start the de-funding.

  • Laytonaster

    What better way for authoritarians to control people than to control their entertainment? For everything the anti-gaming claims games to do, they never realize that they’re describing themselves instead. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/0e6e44d151f307af5352248e326d86768d3c0f874a0ce3cdf45768be3348bd09.png

  • Something that a lot of these proposals fail to recognize is other outside factors that potentially affect a person’s mental health. My oldest brother has a serious problem with opening up about things bothering him, and he plays games extensively every day in near isolation. At times, he has actually neglected to help out in the house because of this, just so he can continue to keep playing games.

    I’m not a psychologist, so I don’t know what exactly caused him to become this way – I can make guesses – but I don’t think video games are responsible.

    • From what I can understand; I would say it is a pre-existing personality trait, with gaming being used as a coping mechanism.

      The latter part of that is dodgy in terms of viability tho. I’m no doctor, so I’m most likely wrong.

      • You would probably be correct if my brother wasn’t already a rather outgoing person when he was a kid – he regularly played basketball and whatnot. The last thing I remember him saying about that is he doesn’t like failure or something.

  • Hawk Hopper

    “Lets attack the mental health of gamers that caused the flood against the establishment”

    I bet this is getting Movie “I covered for rapist Devin Farci” Bob’s pulse pumping at the thought of this leading to eugenics against people he doesn’t like.

    • Disqusted

      Headlines a few days later: WHO approves gaming disorder medications, rakes in a fortune.

      A few days after that: Gamers die mysteriously after prescribed medication use, gaming disorder blamed.

      And right after that: Russia poisons gamers through Trump.

  • Disqusted

    WHO is a f’kn joke. I don’t recall hearing them doing anything about vaccines proven to cripple people, to the point of being banned in places like Japan, and they’re probably in support of a ton of other shit like that.

    Not to mention completely ignoring the liberal/Sorosite rioting morons and Trumphobia/Trumphysteria who keep denying basic facts of reality. That is absolutely without a doubt a disorder. Nope, just attack gamers, again.

  • anopolis

    begin rant..3.2.1. regulate every damn thing….what if people like to drink too much water?..regulate that shit, can’t have them peeing too much…wastes water to flush..its for our own good…and in some cases they might be right…but, it’s not their place..the road to hell is paved with good intentions..people everywhere would do world at large a big fat favor if they just fucked the hell off…end rant..

    • Disqusted

      Drinking water makes you just as evil as Hitler, you know. Liberal logic.