A survey on online gaming behaviour shows some 70 percent of Thai children play them almost everyday, increasing exposure to violence in some games and bullying.
According to the Situation of Thai Children Online Gaming Behaviour Survey this year, conducted with some 3,000 samples in secondary and vocational schools across the nation, 88.33 percent of the respondents say they have played online games, with 64.66 percent saying they play everyday for an average of 3-5 hours per day.
8.1 percent of children in Bangkok say they play online games for more than 8 hours a day during weekends, mostly at home or dormitory. The most common factor for starting to play online games is a friend’s invitation, followed by information in online media.
The survey result was revealed at a seminar on Thai children’s online behaviour and threats posed, by the Association of Youth Radio and Media, the Thai Health Promotion Foundation and related agencies.
The survey team pointed out a concern over exposure to violence shown in some of the games, which may influence violent behaviour in players, and a trend to accept E-Sport as a sport will encourage them to play games for longer periods.
Many of the children surveyed also spend more than 500 baht monthly on online games, while those involved with online gambling generally spend some 1,000 baht a month.
Bullying is also found in the online gaming community in terms of agitation, threats, defamation, slander and identity fraud. Academics suggest children should talk to their parents or teachers when bullied, and collect evidence for prosecution. Parents and teachers should also help improve digital media literacy among children.