Virtual Life vs. Reality

In the past year, a couple in Korea was arrested for child abuse and neglect after repeatedly underfeeding their baby. The New York Post reports that the reason the child was neglected was that the parents were too busy taking care of their virtual child. The couple was living virtually on a site called PRIUS, (similar to Second Life) and spent up to 12 hours a day on the site. The article then ends with a similar event that states, “A 28-year-old man dropped dead recently after playing his favorite game Starcraft for 50 hours nonstop without eating or drinking.”

This causes me to question, is it possible that these kinds of games can actually be dangerous to our health because they have the possibility to remove us so far from reality that we can forget to do even the most basic things for our bodies such as eat and drink? Obviously these are two extreme examples, but is it healthy to be this detached from reality, where the life that is more important to a person is not physically real?

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One thought on “Virtual Life vs. Reality

  1. These situations are really sad. I wonder if that 28 y/o was living alone, but I’m guessing he was otherwise he wouldn’t have died. Someone would have checked on him at least. I pictured a scene from Avatar when Jake goes to link into the world of the Na’vi and becomes so addicted to their world that Jake would be forced out of link missions just so his superiors could force him to eat. It’s interesting to see this addressed in a major motion picture, but I think in this case his issue was twofold: 1)He was so immersed in the culture of the Na’vi and 2)In this world he was able to walk with two legs rather than sit in a wheelchair. Which comes to the question of whether or not certain types of people are more vulnerable to the addictive nature of video games…

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