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The Straits Times
Feb 15, 2023
A video of a boy threatening his father with a meat cleaver after being banned from playing video games on his mobile phone has gone viral in China.
The South China Morning Post reported that the stand-off began when the father confiscated the boy’s mobile phone.
The boy became angry and grabbed the cleaver to threaten his father.
In the 13-second video, the boy was heard shouting: “Give it to me.”
The boy is believed to be a primary school pupil as he was wearing a red scarf that all Chinese primary schoolchildren are required to wear. The incident reportedly occurred after the school term started, following the winter break.
The video was filmed last Friday by an unidentified person in China’s southern autonomous region of Guangxi. The person told Henan Television that the two individuals involved were father and son.
The footage soon made its way to Chinese social media giant Weibo’s most searched-for list after it was reported by Henan TV. The video has since been viewed by more than seven million people.
Some netizens expressed concerns about game addiction among children after watching the video. One said: “Kids are increasingly addicted to games and, sooner or later, their families will suffer if they become too spoilt.”
Mobile game addiction among children in China has sparked social debate during every winter and summer school break.
Many gaming companies have introduced rules prohibiting minors from playing games for too long and require each player to upload his identity card and undergo facial recognition verification to prove his age.
For example, China’s largest producer of mobile games, Tencent Games, made it a rule that minors could play games produced by Tencent only from 8pm to 9pm for a designated 14-day period during the most recent winter break.
However, minors are bypassing such restrictions by using their parents’ phones.