The internet is taking China by storm, with millions of people logging on in record numbers and web cafes busier than ever. - Mandrake

This is a discussion on The internet is taking China by storm, with millions of people logging on in record numbers and web cafes busier than ever. - Mandrake ; Rising personal wealth means more people are able to buy computers or pay to go online. The vast majority are young people using the net to chat or play games. But behind the boom, there is a downside. Wang Yiming, ...

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Thread: The internet is taking China by storm, with millions of people logging on in record numbers and web cafes busier than ever.

  1. The internet is taking China by storm, with millions of people logging on in record numbers and web cafes busier than ever.

    Rising personal wealth means more people are able to buy computers or
    pay to go online. The vast majority are young people using the net to
    chat or play games.

    But behind the boom, there is a downside.


    Wang Yiming, 21, is a self-confessed internet addict, one of a growing
    number in China. He used to spend hours online each day, often going
    without food or sleep. His face is drawn and sallow.


    He said addiction changed his whole life:


    "A month or two after I started surfing the internet, I failed some of
    my school tests, but I was too afraid to tell my parents. When my
    father found out, he was very angry.


    "But I couldn't control my addiction. Friends were also telling me that

    I was on the net too long, but I thought: 'It's my life, I can do what
    I want.' I became a real loner, was withdrawn, and wouldn't listen to
    anyone". http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/4327258.stm


    For help, Wang Yiming went to China's first internet clinic, a
    low-rise, anonymous building in central Beijing.


    All 15 patients when I visited were young men - the main social group
    affected by this problem - and they all told a similar story of how
    their addiction to the net destroyed their lives.


    The clinic itself is part of a bigger addiction centre also treating
    those hooked on alcohol or drugs. The internet addicts go on a two-week

    course involving medical treatment, psychological therapy, and daily
    workouts.


    The latter are a key part of the programme. Many of the men have spent
    every waking moment in front of a computer screen and have never
    experienced regular exercise.


    Dr Tao Ran, head of the clinic, said the scale of the problem in China
    was enormous:


    "Every day in China, more than 20 million youngsters go online to play
    games and hit the chat rooms, and that means that internet addiction
    among young people is becoming a major issue here.


    "And it's only recently that the authorities have started to wake up to

    the seriousness of the problem with more articles in the papers
    highlighting the dangers of going online for too long," he said.


    Rising demand


    The clinic is getting an extra 200 beds next year to meet demand and
    new centres are due to open in other major cities like Shanghai and
    Guangzhou.


    But the programme only lasts two weeks, followed by minimal after-care.

    Many have their doubts about the long term, like one patient's mother.


    "The work of the doctors here at the centre has been very important,
    but of course I'm still worried," she said.


    "I admire the doctors for what they have done so far and all we can do
    is follow their advice and knowledge to help our son," she said.


    All the men know this centre is just the beginning. Now they must
    return to the outside world and the real test for these computer
    addicts.


    And with millions of Chinese logging on every day, it is likely that
    the country's first internet clinic is going to have its hands full.


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  2. Re: The internet is taking China by storm, with millions of people logging on in record numbers and web cafes busier than ever.

    On Thu, 30 Nov 2006 05:16:01 -0800, home.home1 wrote:

    [nothing related to Linux whatsoever]

    Abuse report filed.

    --
    "Ubuntu" - an African word, meaning "Slackware is too hard for me".


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