It’s Internet law for us to mention Boris Johnson’s Telegraph column decrying that computer games rot the brain. It’s all too easy to criticise the piece, but there are a couple of genuinely intriguing points.
For one thing, Boris clearly thinks that he’s making an original, outrageous point – “it is time someone had the guts to stand up, cross the room and just say no to Nintendo” – rather than pandering to Telegraph readers’ prejudices, which is what he’s actually doing. And despite actively blaming games, the language of some of his arguments better support blaming parents – “at home we let them slump in front of the consoles”.
As always with this sort of argument, there’s at least as much entertainment to be had from the comments.
Like ‘deborah giles’: “Very handy when I want to sit for a quiet hour reading the Telegraph but such a battleground when you want the kids to stop.”
Or ‘s hickman’: “At last someone has spoken – agree agree agree – it frightens the daylights out of this grandmother.”
There are plenty of people jumping in to defend the honour of games too, of course, and many on both sides point out that, like all things in this world, it’s all about moderation. Unless you want to write a sensationalist column about something you don’t really understand.