Saturday 25 April 2015

Chinese father hires online 'assassins' to target his son

Published 07/01/2013 | 14:38

A father who became exasperated with his son's video game obsession hired 'assassins' to target him in an online game.

The 23-year-old man, identified in reports as Xaio Feng, noticed that he was frequently targeted in an online game by players who were considerably more skilled them him. Suspecting that something was amiss, he talked to the players, who said they had been paid to 'kill' him.

The man said his father had apparently decided on the scheme after his son left a job at a software development company after just three months. Since then, the father felt, his son had spent his unemployment playing video games rather than looking for a job.

Xaio Feng, who claims his video game addiction was exaggerated, confronted his father over the matter and reaffirmed his commitment to playing video games.

Internet and video game addiction is so widespread in China that in 2007 the government launched a campaign to combat internet addiction. The campaign included the establishment of clinics employing the use of electroshock therapy to deal with the addiction. Such physical punishments and "destructive surgeries" were banned from the clinics in 2009, but the centres continue to operate around China today.

Luckily Xaio's father did not have to enlist the states help with his son in the end, as Xaio Feng agreed to start looking for a job that he enjoyed.

By Oliver Smith

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