Bleats

The World Health Organisation Has Officially Recognised "Gaming Disorder" AKA Video Game Addiction

No, it doesn't just mean you spent all weekend playing Fortnite.

Over the weekend, the world’s top health organisation, the World Health Organisation (WHO), officially recognised gaming disorder as a real thing, likening it to gambling addictions.

The change comes as a result of member states of the World Health Assembly agreeing to adopt the eleventh revision of the ICD, also known as the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (try saying that five times fast).

The ICD-11, which will come into affect on New Year’s Day, 2022, categorises “gaming disorder” as a “disorder due to addictive behaviours”, placing it in the same category as gambling addictions. It includes two sub-categories: one for predominantly online gaming, and one for predominantly offline gaming.

 

It describes the disorder as being “characterized by a pattern of persistent or recurrent gaming behaviour (‘digital gaming’ or ‘video-gaming’), which may be online (i.e., over the internet) or offline, manifested by:

  1. impaired control over gaming (e.g., onset, frequency, intensity, duration, termination, context);
  2. increasing priority given to gaming to the extent that gaming takes precedence over other life interests and daily activities; and
  3. continuation or escalation of gaming despite the occurrence of negative consequences. The behaviour pattern is of sufficient severity to result in significant impairment in personal, family, social, educational, occupational or other important areas of functioning.”

So basically, if gaming has taken over your life, and you find yourself literally unable to control your impulse to pick up a controller, you might have a problem. I’m not a medical professional though, so please do not use this article to self-diagnose, thanks!

Don’t start panicking just yet, though: a Real Life Doctor took to Twitter to explain what gaming disorder is and isn’t.

In fact, a diagnosis cannot be made without 12 continuous months of behaviour that impairs a person’s functioning.

He goes on to provide some helpful examples:

You basically have a doctor’s permission to take a week off work to binge WoW now, guys. Print out that tweet and show it to your boss, then let me know how that goes. I’ll wait.

Mashable pointed out that the details and examples provided in Jiao’s thread are useful, but not actually included in the ICD, which means there’s the potential for that ambiguity to create confusion and perhaps even inaccurate diagnoses.

However, it’s still early days, so there’s time for medical professionals and experts on addictive behaviours to work together to shore up diagnostic criteria for gaming addictions.

This move shouldn’t be taken as an attack on gamers, unless identifying gambling addictions is an attack on gamblers, or identifying sex addictions is an attack on anyone who has sex. Any activity that takes over your life to the point where everything else is neglected is a problem; nobody is targeting gaming because of some wider conspiracy against gamers. So let’s nip those screeds against ‘big pharma’ in the bud, shall we?

Soon You'll Be Able To Live Like Luke Skywalker And Raise Your Own Porg Family

I love my CGI children.

Thanks to the wonders of technology, soon you will be able to raise your own family of porgs just like Luke Skywalker probably did while on the island of Ahch-To. How else did he kill all that time? It’s what I would do.

I’d catch a grenade for you.

You’ll be able to live out your dreams thanks to Project Porg, a mixed reality (where aspects of virtual reality are combined with your actual reality) experiment that was first announced last October.

Throw my head on a blade for you.

Star Wars: Project Porg will be released for free on Magic Leap One headsets, and will allow you to look after your own ‘Tamagotchi-like’ porg family, which has been my dream ever since I first saw The Last Jedi all those months ago.

The story of Project Porg is that Chewie has left you with a device, as well as a porg, accompanied by a message from the ever-helpful C3PO that explains how you can take care of it. And no, ‘taking care of it’ is not a euphemism for ‘eating it’, if any Wookiees are reading this.

I’d jump in front of a train for you.

Being a mixed reality experiment, the porgs will be living in whatever room you’re wearing the headset in, so yes, there will be porgs in your living room.

You know I’d do anything for you.

The obvious highlight is when the porg starts a family and a baby porg is introduced into the mix. In addition to feeding the porgs, you’ll also be able to play with them using a ball, a laser pointer, and even a Chewie doll, completing the cycle that Chewie started when he ate that barbecued porg.

To develop Project Porg, the team behind it studied how humans interact with their real pets, and Matt Martin, creative executive of the Lucasfilm Story Group said of the relationship between human and porg that “it’s really very much like a relationship that one would have with their dog or cat”. Except better, because porgs.

Check out the video for Project Porg below, and start saving: a Magic Leap One headset costs over $3,200. Eep.

Turns Out A Popular Esports Star Was A Man Pretending To Be A Woman As Part Of A Social Experiment

Just another day on the world wide web.

The world of esports is in a frenzy after it was revealed over the weekend that a rising star who would have been the first woman to play on a Contenders North America roster was actually not a woman at all.

The player in question, ‘Ellie’, was signed to the Overwatch Contenders team Second Wind last month, and following the signing, shared screenshots online of abuse she had received. Less than two weeks later, Second Wind announced that she had left the team “due to some unforeseen reactions”.

Soon after, it was revealed that ‘Ellie’ didn’t actually exist, and was really a man, who plays under the name ‘Punisher’, and who was apparently “conducting a social experiment”. He would enlist female friends to talk for him during games.

An Overwatch League spokesperson told The Washington Post:

“We found that ‘Ellie’ was a fabricated identity … created by a veteran player to obfuscate their identity.”

While some esports personalities, like Rod Breslau, were quick to dismiss the saga as trolling, others pointed out that it was a lot more thought-out than simple run-of-the-mill trolling for laughs.

It’s unclear what this ‘experiment’ was hoping to prove. We already know that women are taken less seriously when it comes to gaming and esports; now, if anything, it’s going to be harder for women to be taken seriously, because women in esports will immediately invoke memories of this bizarre experiment.

And we already know that women involved in gaming face more scrutiny and are more likely to receive harassment online. So what was Punisher trying to prove? That sexism still exists? Any woman could’ve told you that.

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