Parents: It's Your Fault That Video Games Turned Your Kid Into A Gambling Addict ...

… because you didn't set the parental controls properly in the video game you bought. The parental controls. In the video game rated for 3 years and up.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QiOhq6Gcv3s

Much of the video game industry now targets vulnerable people to remove their money. This includes titles aimed at children that have been rated as such.

Do you really want this guy catching your whale child?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xNjI03CGkb4

Most of the major publishers are in on it including EA, Take Two and Bethesda.

Comments

  • +1 vote

    Much of the video game industry now targets vulnerable people to remove their money.

    So, pretty much every business ever that wants to sell anything at all. Target the audience that pays you. Why didn't we know about this???

    I got every game from Command and Conquer to GTA growing up as a kid with no parental controls or restrictions. I didn't turn violent, I never hurt anyone, I don't gamble and I don't support microtransactions. What happened there?

    • +9 votes

      Those games you had growing up didn't have 2020 formulas and strategies in place to encourage kids to spend on blind loot boxes or peer-pressure based cosmetics.

      The industry is getting worse and shouldn't be defended with blanket retorts like "but all businesses do it???"

      •  

        Peer pressure has always been an issue for kids. Video games doesn't change this. Likewise with making money - lootboxes set off some kind of neural reward pathway? So does sugar. Nothing about this is unique or new.

        •  

          Much more predatory when it involves pay to play or pay to win

          •  

            @abuch47:

            Much more predatory when it involves pay to play or pay to win

            How is "pay to play" predatory? Is it also predatory to "pay to eat", and "pay to catch the train", "pay to drive", "pay to have a place to stay", and "pay to use the internet" too?

    • +4 votes

      Games aren't trying to make you are murder, they don't have strategies in place to slowly drive you to killing people.

      They do have strategies to make people addicted and blow all their money on micro-transactions.

      • -1 vote

        They do have strategies to make people addicted and blow all their money on micro-transactions.

        I completely agree, but I blame the people for getting sucked into it, not the corporations whom exist to make money. If we stopped supporting those practises, they would stop offering them. If we all stopped pre-ordering, they would stop with the nonsense. I absolutely hate celebrity culture but I don't blame them, I blame us for making them relevant and constantly in the news.

        I play the same games as everyone else does but have never succumbed to paying for micro-transactions or gambling mechanics. Pokemon Go alone made a staggering $1 BILLION in revenue last year. It's far too easy to cry victim and blame things on others instead of reflecting on yourself.

  • +11 votes

    Its because we voted for labour and liberal.

  • +1 vote

    Parents: It's Your Fault That Video Games Turned Your Kid Into A Gambling Addict

    Well it is, isn't it. You're the parent , you need to parent your child and not shift responsibility onto others.

    • +4 votes

      exaclty, annoys me when you see kids that clearly are beef cakes, and their parents are the ones buying the food, yet they blame society for the existence of these foods, I find so many parents are completely negligent of what their kids eat / do. (not claiming to be the a good parent, but got the basics like this right)

      • -1 vote

        You can't control what your kids ultimately do. You can only guide them in as good a direction as you can. Eventually they're going to make their own choices or have choices made for them (by environment, situation, circumstance or previous life events).

        Stop pretending the difference between a good and bad parent is so black and white. If they have the ability to do something that may light up their brain with dopamine - like the random chance of a cool video game item - there's a good chance they'll find a way to do it.

        • +2 votes

          You can't control what your kids ultimately do.

          I mean, until they're 12 or so you absolutely can. Saying that you can't is literally the first step in avoiding responsibility.

          • +1 vote

            @HighAndDry: Again, you can only suggest a path for them to take.

            Statistically speaking, stricter parenting ultimately [doesn't work] (https://www.ahaparenting.com/parenting-tools/positive-discip...)

            What you can do is teach about outcomes and consequence. That's where your responsibilities lie as someone in that position.

            You can't force anyone to behave in any sort of way that you want and the only way to make someone do something is to make them WANT to do it. That's what these games do and capitalise on through peer pressure and through the same addictive loops seen in gambling.

            Negging people on here because you disagree with them also doesn't help further the conversation. Telling people they're wrong doesn't create a solution, but perhaps sharing your views and explaining why you may disagree could lead to some bridging middle grounds.

            •  

              @Ninternet: Up until a certain age, everything they could possibly own and have comes through parents and/or family, unless they're stealing. You don't have to buy the game/food or whatever they want.

              Kids don't have the mental capacity of adults to make decisions. If you hand them a plate of candy or a plate of salad for dinner, no doubt most would choose candy. To allow young kids this kind of decision making, is borderline neglectful- not saying you need to shove it down their throat btw.

              •  

                @Ughhh: I get what you're saying and I agree mostly.

                I think Kids can make decisions, but obviously don't generally have any comprehension of foresight that adults have in terms of being able to see or predict longer term consequence.

                From what I've observed, most kids at risk to these sorts of gambling and cosmetic purchasing tactics are those with older siblings or kids already in that 10-15 year old age bracket where it's almost like their way of creating a trendy or unique online avatar to show off for their friends. Kids in that bracket are very susceptible to that sort of influence and peer pressure.

                Anyway, I'm not yet a parent, but often think about what I'd do if/when I find myself in that sort of situation, so I'm happy to hear what other people have to say on these things too.

                •  

                  @Ninternet:

                  From what I've observed, most kids at risk to these sorts of gambling and cosmetic purchasing tactics are those with older siblings or kids already in that 10-15 year old age bracket where it's almost like their way of creating a trendy or unique online avatar to show off for their friends. Kids in that bracket are very susceptible to that sort of influence and peer pressure.

                  I don't disagree with that, but trying to influence and controls kids at that age is a little bit on the late side, when they've already developed their personality and character. Unfortunately bullying and peer pressure isn't something that will ever 100% go away imo, you cant change others, but what you can do is mould your child, but thats something that takes years and wayyyyy before they get to that susceptible age group.

                  To buy them the game/food or whatever they want to satisfy the peer pressure is almost enabling this toxic behaviour imo. I get that it's not an easy decision for parents to make, whether to give in and let the kid be happy (are they really though?) and accepted, or stand your ground against this toxicity and risk your kid being alienated.

                  •  

                    @Ughhh: I think it's important (like you alluded to at the end) to teach a kid that enjoyment does not rely solely on physical objects.

              •  

                @Ughhh:

                Up until a certain age, everything they could possibly own and have comes through parents and/or family, unless they're stealing. You don't have to buy the game/food or whatever they want.

                I was getting pirated games on CD-Rs that my parents would not have bought me when I was 9/10.

            •  

              @Ninternet: A lot of "studies show", very little actual studies in that blog piece.

              Parenting is not an exact science and will depend on tiny things like tone of voice, support from other parent, attention to the child, etc.

              Also I didn't neg you. Ironically, throwing wild unsupported accusations is probably a bad parenting behaviour.

        • +1 vote

          when i see an 11 year old weighing 100kg with rotten teeth, who just plays video games every day, thats 100% bad / lazy parenting and child abuse in my opinion.

          all the big kids at school getting teased…. the parents should be feeding them no sugar, and not shit package oven food.

          •  

            @unclesnake: The big kids at school getting teased suggests the issue lies with the kids who are doing the bullying and how they've been raised as people/treated at home.

            There is nothing good about enforcing bad and lazy habits into a young child. I agree. But shaming them and telling them to change because "it will make the other kids stop picking on you for your appearance" is not the correct approach here either.

            • +1 vote

              @Ninternet: That's a false dichotomy. You can model, encourage, and instill healthy eating and exercise habits without being abusive.

            •  

              @Ninternet: bullying aside its not the point i'm trying to get across.

              id say 99% of fat kids are the result of shit parents, buying them shit food. a kid lives near me who is 100kg at 11, and the mum is shocked yet he eats buckets of kfc for breakfast (no lie).

              kids who play too much video games etc are the result of parents who don't control their kids play time, they have the power to control it (ill give single mums with violent kids leeway here, but maybe the diet makes them violent / pyshcho )

              kids with rotten teeth are the result of parents who give their kids too much sugar and st the very least dont push their kids to brush their teeth.

    •  

      If only that actually happened.

    • +1 vote

      Parents need to take responsibility for parenting, of course, but it's unreasonable to expect every parent to be an expert in: psychology, technology, nutrition, exercise, medicine, linguistics, etc. (and all of the specialities within these fields…)

      Did you know games designed for 3-year-olds had options to turn off gambling? I didn't.

      Predatory practices succeed because most people aren't wise to all of them. Awareness raising, such as this thread, helps.

      •  

        Very well-worded.

      •  

        Awareness raising only works if the people you're making aware of the issue (here, the parents) understand that it's their responsibility to seek out this knowledge and exercise the options that this new awareness allows them.

        A good parent will educate themselves about what their children are doing and the effects of what their children are doing. If they know how to use the internet, the information is out there. Searching up "parental controls" should not need to be taught or said to adults who have taken the responsibility of being parents.

        They're the parents, not children. If we need to hold their hands, god help their children.

        •  

          I know "parental controls" are a thing for like violence and boobs, but I would have assumed a game aimed at 3 year olds would just be, you know, suitable for 3 year olds. So I, a reasonably tech-savvy guy (I run non-standard OSs on phones etc) learned something today.

          Not that I would really want to be giving my toddler an addictive video screen gizmo anyway… I can't save myself but maybe I can save him

          ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

        • +1 vote

          A good parent will educate themselves about what their children are doing and the effects of what their children are doing. If they know how to use the internet, the information is out there. Searching up "parental controls" should not need to be taught or said to adults who have taken the responsibility of being parents.

          I actually strongly disagree with the premise of this statement (as a parent myself). I think that things like "parental controls" are making kids turn out like snowflakes. I would never try to use these things to hide what the real world is like from my kids.

          I grew up pretty rough - poor household in a bad neighbourhood, surrounded by bad kids at school, got involved with petty offences…etc. But what I learned really early is that the world is a tough place and that you have to be strong to win at the rat-race of life. I learned that people are out to get you, that people will kick you when you're down and nobody will give a shit about you. Even though this might sound bad, I appreciated every bit of it. When I grew up, that strength helped me come back from adversity, helped me strive to better my own life.

          If some kid loses all of his money on loot boxes, then hopefully that kid learned a lesson about what happens when you gamble. Rather my kid lose his allowance on loot boxes than his entire life savings at age 35 at the casino. The earlier kids learn that the world is out to strip you of your money, they better IMO.

          •  

            @p1 ama: Oh I actually agree with you. The fact that it's the parents responsibility to know about what tools are at their disposal doesn't at all mean they're free from the responsibility of determining how best to use, or not use, those tools.

            That's actually one thing I've wanted to say but haven't had a chance to: temptation is everywhere and children will invariably grow up. To hide away the existence of things like loot boxes and other easy dopamine hits is just setting them up for failure when they enter the real world and no longer has their hand held anymore.

  • +1 vote

    lol

  •  

    Yes. I agree. Ban money.

  • +3 votes

    Video killed the radio star

  • +3 votes

    Most businesses try and give you a good value product at the best price possible while still making a profit.

    The business model of loot boxes is to make it exceedingly difficult for you to obtain a digital item that has artificial scarcity so you spend the largest amount of money possible trying to get it. Players are gambling money hoping the digital roulette wheel behind the scenes will fall onto the rare item they desire. It is an extremely unethical business model.

    • -1 vote

      Players are gambling money hoping the digital roulette wheel behind the scenes will fall onto the rare item they desire. It is an extremely unethical business model.

      It's no more unethical than the lottery, the casino, the TAB, the local arcade where you can win big soft toys, or kids playing card games with stakes in the yard. It may well be a ploy to make money, but nobody forces you to play the game.

      • +2 votes

        But you have to be over 18 to play at the TAB, the Casino or the lotto. No such restrictions on some games but then one has to wonder, who get eh kids credit cards in order to make those purchases? Same people that buy them smart phones I guess.

        • +1 vote

          You ignored the arcade, trading card games in the schoolyard, etc.

          • +1 vote

            @HighAndDry: That's a little different though, we never played school games for money (just more cards :) ) and the arcade was only good until you ran out of change. Again, if you're an adult you can go to the ATM and get more, not so much if you're a kid. I guess the principle is the same just the stakes that are higher.

  • +1 vote

    Hahaha, you can't be serious can you?

    I only have one question: Why would your child have access to any money digitally before they're old enough to handle their own finances? Or even worse, access to your money? The blame is absolutely with the parent.

    Yes, the whole loot box thing isn't good but it's being reduced drastically as well as becoming much more transparent. But also it's ones own damn responsibility to use their head and make their own choices then live with the consequences.

  • +2 votes

    Since everyone expects society and more regulations to solve their problems, let me present an opposing point of view. Many of you guys commenting are not even developers. There are members of my immediate family who are game and app developers, so I'll try and pass on what they've told me about the industry as well.

    Let's go to the root of the problem - game companies and game developers need to make money. Regardless of what you think about the artistic merits of a good game, someone has to pay the bills, and developers have to put food on the table to feed their families. Therefore, the incentive is to produce a good game that will be popular, sell well and generate large revenues for the studio and the developers. This was the model of game development for many, many years. People were happy to pay huge amounts of money for good games and they were rewarded with a quality experience.

    Over time, the amount that people were willing to pay for games has drastically gone down. With the introduction of mobile apps, most people even expect games to be free. Of course, we can talk about ads and the like, but they don't come anywhere near the revenue required to be able to sustain a studio, pay developers and make profits. In a sense, players actually forced developers to start implementing in-game purchases because they were too cheap to pay for their games upfront. After the introduction of free-to-play games, the model turned from developing good games to developing games with a good enough "hook" that would keep players around and encourage them to pay for in-game purchases.

    Eventually (and rather unsurprisingly) these in-game purchases started incorporating more of a random element and became what we now know as loot boxes. Are game studios morally corrupt for trying to "exploit" their players? Sure, but why shouldn't they take money that people are willing to throw at them? So whose fault is it that we have the situation we do now? The players of course. People who keep demanding free-to-play games, getting hooked into buying loot, throwing money at developers who produce shit games. This tactic is used because it works. If nobody bought loot and just paid for good games, nobody would do this.

    If some kid wants to spend all his money on loot, that's his choice. I'd rather spend my own money on quality games where the developers have actually put care and passion into what they've done and created a game worth playing.

  •  

    Really?
    I usually blame the parents that let their/encourage their kids to play Keno at the club,

  • +2 votes

    …we never had these problems back in the days of pong

  •  

    Yep… Time to use that "hide" button…

  • +4 votes

    Its actually pretty disgusting these gambling mechanics in games nowdays. Anything that has lootboxes is on the hard nope list.