Saudi Arabian authorities have announced that they will ban 47 videogames, following the reported suicides of two teenagers who were playing a social media “game”.
A 13-year-old girl and 12-year-old boy recently apparently committed suicide in the country after playing a social media “game” called Blue Whale which, as Forbes describes, is more akin to a form of cyber-bullying or grooming than to a videogame.
But, as the Associated Press reported, the Saudi General Commission for Audio-Visual Media has responded by announcing that it will ban no fewer than 47 games, including Grand Theft Auto V, The Witcher and Assassin’s Creed 2 as a result of the deaths. It said those games fell foul of unspecified: “Violations of rules and regulations”.
As yet, a full list of the banned games has not been released; nor has the Saudi General Commission for Audio-Visual Media stated when the ban will come into effect. And it isn’t clear why the Saudi Arabian authorities should feel obliged to punish the games industry for a tragedy that arose due to a toxic social media phenomenon. But as more news emerges, we’ll bring it to you.