China bans minors from playing video games during the school week, sets strict limits for the weekend

·1 min read
Lanxiang technical school
Lanxiang technical school GREG BAKER/AFP via Getty Images

China is set to limit the amount of time young people are allowed to play video games even further.

The country's National Press and Publication Administration announced Monday that minors will now be banned from playing video games from Monday to Thursday, and on the other days of the week and on holidays, they'll be allowed to play only between 8 p.m. and 9 p.m., The Wall Street Journal reports.

This comes after the Chinese government in 2019 said that those under 18 would only be allowed to play video games for 90 minutes on weekdays and three hours on the weekends, and they couldn't play between the hours of 10 p.m. and 8 a.m., as The New York Times reported.

The even harsher restrictions announced Monday were intended to "protect the physical and mental health of minors," the state-run Xinhua News Agency said, per the Journal. The Times previously wrote that with the 2019 restrictions, China wanted to fight video game addiction, "a problem that top officials believe is to blame for a rise in nearsightedness and poor academic performance across a broad swath of society."

But users of the Chinese social media platform Weibo were surprised at how strict the new policies were, per Reuters, with one comment reading, "This is so fierce that I'm utterly speechless."

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