Earlier this year, Kagawa prefecture in Japan passed a law that imposes a 1 hour play time limit on all residents age 17 and below. Response to the legislation has been laced with skepticism thus far, however – and one young man is now planning to battle these new restrictions in court.
A 17-year-old Japanese teen (going by the name Wataru) is now currently attempting to crowdfund a lawsuit to challenge the video game play time restriction law, along with the help of lawyer Tomoshi Sakka. Speaking to AFP, Wataru explained that he was fighting the restrictions on principle – as he felt families should control the playtime of their kids, not the government.
“How long children are allowed to play games or use a smartphone should be rules set by each family, not by the government…I thought it is wrong that an administrative body intervenes in family life.”
Additionally, Wataru felt that the law was somewhat misguided in it’s purpose – as it simply assumes that video games are the largest negative influence on children, while ignoring other major stress factors like school life:
“[The guidelines are] based on the premise that gaming is the cause of things like truancy and addiction to games…but it could be the other way around — truancy can be caused by problems in school, for example, and for some people playing games can be the only relief.”
It’s not clear how far Wataru will be able to take this lawsuit, but we’ll report back as we hear more. Stay tuned.