Since the turn of the century, modern technology has been embraced by many youth—including adults—as a form of communication and entertainment. This technology can range form computers and cell phones, all the way to video games.
For some people, the thrill of playing video games behind a digital screen can be short-lived, but for a growing number of youth, long-term gaming use has resulted in behavioral changes and addiction. On June 18, 2018, the World Health Organization (WHO) classified gamers who are “characterized by impaired control over gaming” as suffering from a mental health condition, according to the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-11).
Research has suggested that video games can enhance perceptual and cognitive abilities (pdf), but when it comes to spending quality family time, studies (pdf) have shown that a breakdown in familial communication—something that is most needed in child and adolescent development (pdf)—resulted when children or teenagers became addicted to video games. Behavioral changes such as aggression have also been associated with long-term video game use.
This doesn’t help when teenagers are in their “rebellious stages” as well.
Despite this trend, some children still prioritize quality family time and communication over video games—and are also giving some much-needed advice to their fellow peers.
The below clip shows a couple along with their son walking into the Royal Coach Diner in New York. The son is holding a tablet while sitting at the dining table with his parents. Engrossed in the game, the young gamer is oblivious to his surroundings.
When his mom says, “Seriously Ashton, can you please put the computer down?” the boy reacts by answering, “Oh! You just made me lose.”
He disregards his parents over a game of Fortnite before telling them that he has to start all over again.
When the steward comes to take the order, the parents seem ready, but Ashton is a bit distracted.
When his mom asks him what he’d like to drink, he replies curtly, “I don’t care.”
The dad gets uncomfortable with his behavior and says: “Ashton, put the game down and order your food.”
At this point, the people in the restaurant begin to take notice of his behavior.
The mother asks the steward to give them a moment. She calls out his name several times, but there is no response. The dad then tells him: “Ashton, your mother is talking to you. Can you put the game down?”
The boy then replies impolitely to his dad.
This is when a mother on another table chimes into the conversation adding that her 19-year-old is also a game addict.
Meanwhile, her younger son at the table adds that the “game is addicting.”
When Ashton’s dad asks the little boy why he wasn’t he playing it then, the boy responds: “It’s like rude…”
The woman’s son suggests Ashton’s dad to take the game and instead allow him to stare at the wall.
Unhappy, Ashton retorts by saying: “But then you just can’t play.”
Ashton asks the boy, “How would you feel if you [sic] parents took your game away?”
The boy bravely responds: “It’s okay.”
The proud mother then explains to Ashton that his parents are looking forward to having lunch with him.
The reply from Ashton this time is, “But it’s my iPad, it’s my game!” The stranger then questions him, “But who bought it?”
All customers agree that the game is addictive and try giving different suggestions. But Ashton simply doesn’t seem to agree.
One concerned lady even tells him, “These are human beings, these are your family.”
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But what really ends up saving the day is some real words of wisdom that come from a man, Roosevelt, sitting across from the family.
He pulls up a seat and tells Ashton: “Now, you’re always going to have a chance to play that game…but [you’re parents] are not going to be there all the time.”
Just as the man continues his sermon, John Quiñones, the host of the show What Would You Do?, walks in. The dad is identified as actor Josh, the mom as Angela, and of course, we are all aware of Ashton.
Check out the social experiment, and see how these words create an impact.
Watch the video below: