Mobile Games: A mother in China learned this the hard way after found out that her 13-year-old daughter had spent spending 449,500 Yuan (approximately Rs 52, 19,809) almost every penny of the family’s entire savings, within a span of four months by making in-game purchases in online gaming.
According to a report by the South China Morning Post, the girl’s teacher suspected that she might be hooked to online pay-to-play games after noticing her excessive phone use at school. The teacher then informed the minor’s mother, Wang, who was shocked upon checking her bank balance as she discovered that it had been completely drained and had a mere 0.5 Yuan (Rs 5) in it.
Distraught by the shocking revelation of having lost all her saving, the woman posted a video online displaying pages of her bank statement. The video which has gone viral on Chinese social media platforms, showed the teary-eyed woman displaying her bank statement which revealed various transactions made towards pay-to-play mobile phone games.
Upon learning about the incident, the girl was confronted by her father and confessed that she had purchased mobile games worth 120,000 Yuan (approximately Rs 13, 93,828) and spent another 210,000 Yuan (about Rs 24,39,340) on in-game purchases.
The girl had also bought mobile games for ten of her classmates for another 100,000 Yuan (around Rs 11, 61,590) and claimed that she was unaware of the money or where it came from, saying that she had “found” a debit card at her home and used it to make the purchases.
The report said that Wang had shared the password with her daughter for emergency use and instructed her to only use the card only when she needed money in their absence.
When confronted by her parents, the girl pretended to be unaware but notably, had deleted all transaction records from her phone to hide the purchases.
The story sparked a debate among users on social media platforms as some believed that a 13-year-old is old enough to be responsible for her actions while others castigated her parents for failing to monitor their child’s activities.
China has the highest number of smartphone addicts, followed by Saudi Arabia and Malaysia, according to a 2022 report by Canada-based McGill University.