More Hong Kong Students are Addicted to the Internet than Gambling


Posted: January 30, 2011

Updated: October 4, 2017

Hong Kong Federation of Youth has demonstrated that teenage internet addiction has become more prevalent than teen gambling addiction.

A new study by the Hong Kong Federation of Youth (HKFYG) has demonstrated that internet addiction has overcome 33% of Hong Kong teenagers, becoming more prevalent than gambling and other traditional teenage addictions. While Hong Kong gambling laws forbid most forms of gambling, previous studies demonstrated that 81% of all adults gamble. Meanwhile, the current study shows that only 12% of teenagers are compulsive gamblers.

The study interviewed 1,508 secondary school students between 12 and 17 to discover about one third addicted to the internet to the point where they actually become ill from withdrawal symptoms if they become incapable of connecting. 474 students self-identified as internet addicts and admitted to becoming restless and bad-tempered when disconnected for prolonged periods.

Federation officials declared that in cases of addiction where parents are seeking their help, 80% are connected with extreme internet abuse. This misuse is a side-effect from the widespread combination of personal computer ownership and broadband internet. Hong Kong’s wealthy population is one of the world’s most connected and secondary schools actually require students to utilize laptop computers during class.

Federation’s report did not discuss whether or how often students suffer from both internet addiction and gambling addiction leading, or if teenagers even visit online gambling sites in Hong Kong.

The HKFYG was founded in 1960 and has become one of the largest non-profit organizations in Hong Kong with a commitment to providing youth services. Diverse services cater to the physical, mental, social, and cultural development, providing over 10,000 activities for 5 million young people every year. The HKFYG founded a Gambling Counseling Center in 2007 as a reaction to the legalization of soccer gambling, anticipating that this would result in more betting on sports in Hong Kong. They also provide services for youth at risk from compulsive gambling problems.

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