If you’re not a gamer, chances are someone close to you is: more than two thirds of Australians regularly play video games.
What was once thought to be the pastime of teenage boys in their bedrooms is now well and truly mainstream, with 91 per cent of households owning a device on which games can be played.
Four Corners wants to know more about how video gaming affects you.
If you’re a gamer, or the partner or parent of a gamer, we’d like to hear your story and how gaming has affected your relationships, physical health and mental health.
If you work in the video game industry, we’d also like to hear from you. We want to know more about how the video game industry fits into all of this and what strategies are used to encourage people to game more.
Why are we doing this investigation?
The Interactive Games and Entertainment Association says gaming can be a fun, educational activity that helps people connect with their friends and families.
This can range from free-to-play mobile games to traditional console games.
But there is a dark side to gaming, with the World Health Organisation officially recognising video game addiction as a mental health disorder in 2019, with some people finding their use of games significantly impacting their personal and social lives, education and work.
The World Health Organisation has recognised video game addiction as a mental health disorder. (Mikkelwilliam/Getty Images)
The industry is expected to be worth more than $200 billion globally by 2023, and the Australian game development industry generated $143.5 million in the 2018/19 financial year.
The array of gaming options on offer has grown substantially in recent years, from FIFA, Call of Duty, Minecraft, Grand Theft Auto, Fortnite, League of Legends to Animal Crossing.
Several popular games have spawned professional e-sport leagues watched by millions of fans around the world.
And just as we binge-watched more Netflix during the COVID-19 lockdown, researchers predict our time spent gaming also increased during the pandemic.
We want to know how this has impacted people.
Will my response be kept private?
We assure you that any information you give us will be treated as strictly confidential. We won’t publish anything you tell us or identify you without getting your permission.
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