PUBG Mobile Addiction Declared Worse Than Drug Addiction
The smartphone version of PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) is a gigantic hit in India, but it appears PUBG Mobile addiction is ruining many people’s lives.
According to a survey from Jana, a mobile advertising company, PUBG Mobile is easily the biggest game in India — and it is estimated that PUBG could be worth up to $1.1 billion by 2021 thanks to high demand from the massive Indian gaming community.
Due to the game’s popularity, it’s not shocking that some gamers are struggling with PUBG Mobile addiction, but recent reports from India spotlight just how bad it has gotten for these PUBG addicts.
The J &K Students association (JKSA) — an academic union from the Indian state Jammu and Kashmir (J & K) — wrote a letter to their local governor, Satyapal Malik, and asked him to ban the game in J & K.
“The addiction to this game has become more concerning than addiction to drugs as we get to see youngsters 24 hours on the mobile phones and playing the game and doing nothing else. We request the administration to immediately ban the game.”
Raqif Makhdoomi, the JKSA deputy chairman, even took it a step further to claim that PUBG Mobile addiction was worse than drug abuse:
Makhdoomi believes PUBG Mobile is severely hindering the performance of students — causing them to fail tests and produce poor grades throughout the academic year. He also gave a detailed observation about a player addicted to PUBG Mobile. “He neglects his health and other important things in life such as family, societal responsibilities, education, etc.,”Makhdoomi told Gulf News India.
Another notable PUBG Mobile addiction horror story from J & K involves a fitness trainer who tried to harm himself after playing PUBG for several days. According to a statement from the hospital that treated him, doctors claim that is got so bad for this player, he had a mental breakdown, and he kept “imagining himself in the battlefield.”
PUBG Mobile addiction seems to be an issue outside of India as well; in September of last year, a family in China had to deal with fatal consequences over the game. The mother of a 13-year-old boy claims her son, who would often play PUBG on his iPad, jumped off their apartment building “to see if he could survive like characters in the PUBG videogame” — he died due to the fall.
According to an addiction specialist (featured in this article by The Independent), “giving your child a smartphone is like giving them a gram of cocaine.”
The lesson here, I think, is that videogame addiction amongst the youth of today, just like any other mental health issue, needs to be taken very seriously.