Sunday, July 31, 2005
If I can't speak about the rest of the world because of "my personal experience" with computer games ( although you are, given the opening to your last post), I'd love to know what games you're playing that are giving you the equivalent sense experience of an actual physical activity. Portraying these games as Gysin's Dream Machine or something similar is wishful thinking on your part. They're prescribed dreams with defined outcomes.
And yes, it does contribute to obesity & depression. So what if everyone you see who plays computer games isn't fat. Every child who eats at McDonald's isn't fat either. Does peddling Happy Meals to children contribute to obesity? I think you'd say yes. As I said, lack of physical activity is a factor. All the dream-states you can muster in childhood won't burn calories or build muscle in a way that training for a real sport or engaging in regular physical activity will.
I think I used the word moderation. I didn't criticize the indulgence, only the compulsions that come at the expense of face-to-face interaction with communities of children.
Dangerous? You used the word dangerous first. You said gaming wasn't any more dangerous than living in Iraq or bombing for democracy. I don't see the relevance to the argument, but never mind that. In terms of being "dangerous", television does present some of the same problems. Television watching is also easier for parents to enforce because of its lack of portability when compared to something like a GameBoy. It's also easier to dole out a start & an end time, given the length of a show or movie. I'm not advocating more TV & less computer gaames, but is that the only option? I don't think so.