Entertainment Software Association Meets With World Health Organization

The Entertainment Software Association (ESA) today confirmed its first-ever formal dialogue with the World Health Organization (WHO) occurred on December 3, 2018. The meeting’s purpose was to discuss the WHO’s activities with respect to video games, provide information on the video game industry, and exchange views on the role that the video games and related industries may play in contributing to public health objectives.

“Meeting with the WHO enabled us to engage in conversations about the positive impact video games have on the more than 2.6 billion players worldwide,” said Entertainment Software Association Acting President and CEO Stanley Pierre-Louis. “We believe that continued conversation and education is needed before any classification is finalized.

“In fact, leading mental health experts have cautioned repeatedly that classifying ‘Gaming Disorder’ creates a risk of misdiagnosis for patients who most need help.

“It’s our hope that through continued dialogue we can help the WHO avoid rushed action and mistakes that could take years to correct. The billions of video game players around the world who will be affected by an ICD-11 classification error deserve action based on meticulous research.

“As an industry we are committed to collaborating with stakeholders, researchers, policymakers, and parents to ensure best-in-class ratings, parental controls, and other tools help video game players and parents understand and manage healthy video game play.”

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