Report Comment to a Moderator Our Moderators review all comments for abusive and offensive language, and ensure comments are from Verified Users only.
Please report a comment only if you feel it requires our urgent attention.
I understand, report it. Cancel

UK govt links games to "early death"

By Phil Elliott

Fri 06 Mar 2009 8:00pm GMT / 3:00pm EST / 12:00pm PST

British Heart Foundation also among groups in anti-videogames attack

The UK government's Department of Health has launched an incredible attack on the videogames industry with an advertisement linking the playing of videogames to an "early death".

The poster, also backed by charities including The British Heart Foundation, Cancer Research and Diabetes UK, shows an image of a child sitting on the floor holding a PlayStation controller in one hand, accompanied by the slogan: "Risk an early death, just do nothing."

The Change4Life campaign, which also features a second, similar advertisement with another child about to eat a cake, is aimed at promoting physical exercise in children, but the clear and public connotations will be unwelcome, to say the least, to an industry working hard to overcome unfounded stereotypes.

The government's own Byron Review last year noted that there was no solid evidence to link obesity to videogames, while the high profile launch and subsequent stellar sales of Nintendo's Wii Fit points towards an increasing trend of more active videogames on offer.

A Sony spokesperson was unavailable for comment at the time of writing.

From Recommendations by Taboola


Dan Webb Editor-in-Chief, Xbox 360 Achievements

5 0 0.0
Wow. Just wow. I love how they focus on games as a catalyst for their hate campaign yet they miss out the obvious television aspect. Way to remain unbiased.

Incredibly frustrating.

Posted:7 years ago


Gordon John Theobald Senior Graphic Artist, Codemasters

1 0 0.0
Yah agreed. This is insanity. Maybe they just want to get the BBFC in to save us all?

Posted:7 years ago


Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.

2,523 3,225 1.3
The fallacies involved with this kind of deduction are so numerous that a new study needs to be commissioned just to count them all.

Posted:7 years ago


Alexander Cederholm Editor-in-Chief,

42 0 0.0
I agree with all of the above but what I really would like to know if they are allowed to have a Sony controller in their ads? AND are they actually allowed to even have this campaign since it seems to have a biased agenda and that the study are plain lies and speculations. This is the same kind of talk we saw the CTA do when they claimed that there was a correlation betweem video games and aggresive behaviour.
The video games industry is not without fault but how about focus on REAL things rather than made up stuff and guess work? And as you said... TV/movies would be a much worse offender in this case.

Posted:7 years ago


Bastian Nehrke Localisation Producer, Nintendo of Europe

5 0 0.0
...just another case of impulsive, aimless action. This looks like somebody felt the urge to do something. And then... something... happens. The financial crisis dit not hit certain people hard enough if there is still money for an advertising campaign like this.
One should put an ad right next to it:

"Risk your credibility. Don't think. Just do."

Posted:7 years ago


Sam Brown Programmer, Cool Games Ltd.

235 164 0.7
I love the fact that I also spent my childhood sitting on my arse doing nothing at except... reading. Reading is also a socially unacceptable activity, don't just pick on games! ;)

I'm still not overweight, either. Never was. Reading must burn more calories than playing games.

Posted:7 years ago


Julian G Harding Video Media Editor, SOS Publications

4 0 0.0
No cake or video games? Imagine the long and joyless life. But at least it's long! But it's joyless... But long. Oh the conundrum.

Posted:7 years ago


Dwain Hill

32 0 0.0
They should be focusing on the positive aspects of exercise and spending money on improving sports facilities rather than taking a cheap shot at the games industry.

Posted:7 years ago


Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.

2,523 3,225 1.3
Excuse me while I do my daily Wii Fit routine and then sit at work all day reading and writing stuff.

Funny, video games are keeping me in shape while my job is 'killing me'.

Posted:7 years ago


Franck Sauer Creative / Tech Art Director, Fresh3d

65 10 0.2
You guys didn't get it right. Looking at the kid blank stare, you can see he is actually waiting for his game to download, doing nothing. The ad is obviously targeted at ISP and their slow bandwidth connections :P

Posted:7 years ago


Login or register to post

Take part in the GamesIndustry community

Register now