Gaming linked to heroin, child death in latest attacks from UK media

Tuesday, 8 July 2014 16:13 GMT By Matt Martin

The UK press is taking a couple of swings at video games again today, linking them to heroin and the death of a child.

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The Sun has a double page spread on the effects of video games on the brain – as addictive as heroin, according to the paper – detailing what it claims is a national “gaming addiction” as big a risk to health as drugs and alcohol.

Dr Mark Griffiths, a researcher at the International Gaming Research Unit who contributes to The Sun’s article, played down the dramatic headlines in a statement to Eurogamer.

“There is no evidence the country is in ‘the grip of addiction’,” he said. “Yes, we have various studies showing a small minority have problematic gaming. But problematic gaming doesn’t necessarily mean gaming addiction. They’re two very separate things. Yet the media seem to put them as the same.”

Meanwhile, Brighton’s The Argus features the story “Father killed his five-week-old daughter after she distracted him from a video game“.

It begins by detailing the defendant’s games playing – Assassin’s Creed 3 on PS3 – and how he violently shook a baby while being distracted.

Later down the page it notes that the defendant suffers from a “neurological condition which causes paralysis, and functional non-epileptic attack disorder, which causes seizures.”

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