Take Control of video game obsession

A new website developed by Relationships Australia (SA) has been launched this week, offering expert advice and practical tips to help tackle video game obsession in young people.

More than 1.2 billion people worldwide – 17% of the world’s population – play games. Gamers range in age from toddlers to grandparents and most keep it under control as a balanced and enjoyable part of their lives.

However, there is growing concern worldwide that for a small but significant portion of young gamers, game play goes beyond hobby to obsession and, in some cases, can lead to thoughts of suicide.

The Take Control website, which was developed in consultation with 10 young Adelaide gamers, aims to address this issue and provide parents, gamers and friends with the tools and resources they need to keep gaming in the fun zone.

The website has advice, a self-screening tool, resources and research for gamers, their parents and friends of gamers. The evidence-based information includes videos, downloadable resources, real-life stories, and lists of hotlines and organisations that young people and parents can contact.

“The aim of the project was to create resources that young people and their parents will actually use, so it was really important to work closely with the consultants to make sure that the information is presented in an approachable and conversational way,” said Rosemary Hambledon, Practice Manager Gambling Help Service at Relationships Australia (SA).

“For those who want to dig in further, we’ve also provided research reports and articles from reputable third party sources which provide an evidence-based, unbiased overview of the current research.”

The website also includes a YouTube video, which was written and developed by the young people involved in the project.

“The consultants wanted a video that didn’t take a hardline “gaming is bad” approach while delivering a message that balance is essential for a happy life,” Rosemary said.

View the Take Control video below or on YouTube: http://youtu.be/aNagB4fG86M

The Department for Communities and Social Inclusion has contributed funds towards this project.