'Sexting' comments Senator wanted games consoles to shut down after two hours

The Senator who became well-known for her comments about "sexting" and "teenagers literally living in a parallel universe" recently has some previous in the world of technology, it seems.

Galway Senator Fidelma Healy Eames previously pledged to write to the National Consumer Association in 2011 to have chips fitted to gaming consoles so they will shut down after two hours.

She also compared the lasting effects of lengthy gaming sessions to the health impacts of smoking cigarettes.

Senator Eames said: "It is only now that research on the addictive nature of these gaming consoles is beginning to emerge.

"What we need is quick action; and I believe it is not unreasonable to demand some class of a microchip to be installed that shuts the game down after two hours, and that it cannot be restarted for another period of time.

"We are soon to be putting images on cigarette boxes to prevent smoking because of the impact on health and its addictive quality. This is not far behind in respect of lasting damage.

"Apart from the health point of view, thousands of our children, teens and even young married men are spending endless hours on these machines. Just ask parents how difficult it is.

"Prolonged periods of usage is negatively impacting on education outcomes as well as emotional and mental health."

She made the call following a coroner’s report of a 20-year-old UK citizen who died from Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) as a result of excessive use of the Xbox.

“This call is not about one death, which is reason enough in itself. Its about the impact the gaming industry without reasonable controls can have on young people’s minds and the quality of their lives," she said.

"I will be writing to the National Consumer Agency asking them to communicate with manufacturers to see what steps they will take to ensure responsible, healthy usage."

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