Prince Harry Wants 'Fortnite' Banned For Addiction Tendencies Worse Than Drugs
Prince Harry is going after the video game Fortnite. The Duke of Sussex calls for banning the popular online game because of its tendency to promote gaming addiction, which he said could be worse than a dependency on alcohol or drugs.
Speaking to a crowd during his royal visit at the YMCA in London, Prince Harry said that Fortnite might be bad for someone's mental health. This is because playing the game entails sitting in front of the computer for long hours without other interactions from the outside world.
Prince Harry also said a similar thing when comparing the public's penchant for social media or too much screen time. He encouraged parents to be more aware of their young children's activities especially with the time they spend on their gadgets.
"It's more dangerous because it's normalized and there are no restrictions to it," the prince said, as per Variety."Without that human connection, when you do have a problem you have nowhere to go," the royal further said. "The only place you might go is online, and you will probably end up getting bullied."
The World Health Organization (WHO) has recently added "gaming disorder" in their handbook. However, some experts believe that addiction to video games must be further defined and differentiated for it to become a significant pathological disease.
According to a report on The Verge, the American Psychiatric Association believes that there isn't enough data to suggest that playing video games can be addicting. The term "gaming disorder" is so broad when experts should define the specifics of what kinds of games can negatively impact a person.
According to Oxford psychologist Andrew Przybylski, some may refer to a gaming disorder if a person plays video games too much. But then again, this also true for indulging in too much food, sex or television.
"We know how opiates and nicotine work and what makes them addictive, but we don't know the same for games," Przybylski said.
But after Prince Harry's call to ban Fortnite, Nepal imposed a ban on PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds(PUBG) as it is affecting children and teenagers. According to Reuters, the game has been blocked by internet service providers in the Himalayan nation after an order from the government.
There haven't been any reported incidents of violence attributed to playing PUBG in Nepal though. Parents have expressed worries over their children's neglect of school work and chores to spend time playing the game. For Prince Harry, games like Fortnite or PUBG promote irresponsibility in children.