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China to formally conduct ID verification of online gamers to curb addiction

(Xinhua)

17:09, August 14, 2011

BEIJING, Aug. 14 (Xinhua) -- The Chinese government will formally implement a regulation on Oct. 1 requiring all online game operators to verify the identity of computer-game players to protect minors from addiction.

The regulation, jointly issued by the General Administration of Press and Publication (GAPP), Ministry of Public Security (MPS) and six other ministries and institutions, is now in a trial run.

According to the regulation, game operators are responsible for submitting players' registration information to the National Citizen Identity Information Center (NCIIC) under the MPS for further verification in order to determine if the player is using a fake ID, said Song Jianxin, an official with the GAPP.

NCIIC will then return the results of identity matches to the operators, and fraudulent gamers will be included in an anti-addiction system that imposes playing time limits, Song added.

Under the control of the system, players, including minors and those found to use fake IDs, only get half experience points if their playing time exceeds three hours per day, and no experience points will be given if they play for more than five hours.

To combat youth online game addiction, the government issued a circular in 2007 ordering all online game operators to install the anti-addiction system, which, according to Song, is the first of its kind in the world.

"The system has been receiving positive effects in controlling the online playing time of minor gamers," said Song, though he didn't specify the criteria for addiction.

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