Deutsche Telekom: Is this all just a game? – How parents can protect …

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When people talk about ‘GG’, ‘Easter Eggs’ or ‘flaming’, many don’t understand what it is *. Many parents feel the same way when they tell their children about their play hobby.

According to a recent study, 67% of 12-19 year olds play digital games several times a week, 41% even daily. In this age group, it is more boys who play online games. However, at 56%, the number of girls who enjoy playing games online is also high.

Our Teach today The initiative aims to promote the development of media literacy among young people aged 9 to 16 and also emphasizes online games. In one of the articles, a mother recounts her desperate and mostly unsuccessful attempts to limit her son’s gambling consumption. In fact, parents often view digital games with great uncertainty. They often know very little about the content of their children’s games from the few stories their children tell them. They wonder what consumption of game they should allow.

What Parents Can Do: Familiarize yourself with online games!

The JIMplus 2020 study by Medienpädagogischer Forschungsverbund Südwest shows that game platforms are playing an increasingly important role as communication media. Here, 12 to 19 year olds were asked how they stay in touch with their friends despite school closings. Messaging apps and the phone were at the top of the list, but computer games came in third with 36%.

The range of importance of the game is wide. This ranges from educational shifts in perspective and forming new friendships through close exchanges with like-minded people, consolidating exclusionary stereotypes and the misuse of hate platforms. , unrest and radicalization. Group-related misanthropy is not uncommon in chats and gaming forums.

As in real life, it is important for parents to consider what and with whom their own child spends their free time in the virtual world.

Here are some tips to keep parents having fun:

  • Accompany your child in the world of games. Play games together or watch games, game progressions, and game platforms together. Don’t just rely on the age rating of the game. Even if you are not a gamer yourself, you should know how chats work, how to block people, how to partially or completely turn off the chat feature, and how. report offensive content. Also, as a family, decide how much play time per week is acceptable.
  • Be open and willing to speak up as a reliable partner for your children. Let your children tell you about the game and its successes. Also learn about your child’s play partners. In computer games and associated communication platforms, we often do not see the age of the people with whom the child is in contact or what their motivations are for being there. And if there are any issues with gambling, keep in mind that gambling bans as a punishment are more likely to cause children to play in secret and thus hide difficulties in gambling communities or the discussions.
  • Discuss what data your child is allowed to disclose. Email addresses, phone numbers, personal data such as full name or age and more photos are private and do not belong to play chats. It is important that your children develop a critical attitude and interrogative from an early age. Above all, they should learn to say “no”.
  • Be sensitive to hidden, racist, radical or far-right positions. Especially in games and on gaming platforms, these worldviews and ideologies are often conveyed subliminally or as part of the game. This is another reason why it is important for parents to learn more about the game.

Get expert help

Many initiatives and organizations that provide information about online gaming and the opportunities and dangers of the virtual world of online gaming, make their offerings available digitally and for free:

Teach today provides materials for parents and educators. When it comes to games, there is a separate thematic folder with expert interviews and articles with general information on aspects to watch out for in games.

In the current interactive multimedia magazine Scroller “Games: keep the fun” (in German) For children aged 9 to 12, Tom and Trixi playfully guide them through the world of games, present their favorite games and explain what bothers them in online games.

the German entertainment software self-regulatory organization (USK) is responsible for testing computer games in Germany. It issues age ratings that indicate the age at which a game is approved. This information serves as guidance but does not replace the parents’ review of the content of the game desired by their child. At the European level, PEGI test online games.

the Federal Agency for Civic Education (German: Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung, abbreviated bpb) created the platform spielbar.de. The German website explains the games and, unlike the USK, analyzes the educational value of the games.

The bpb also offers a series of Eltern-LAN digital games events with guided game sessions where parents can try the games themselves. Workshop facilitators also introduce various other games and evaluate them from a media literacy perspective.

Would you have known?
“GG” stands for “Good Game” and is a fair congratulations on a good game. An ‘Easter Egg’ is a hidden secret level or funny anecdotes and allusions to other games or media. “Flaming” or “flame” refers to insults from other players in the game.

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