tech

WHO teams up with gaming industry to spread COVID-19 awareness, oh the irony!

After calling gaming a disorder, WHO teams up with gaming industry to spread COVID-19 awareness.

The campaign is said to be backed by some big gaming companies including Activision Blizzard, Twitch, Riot Games, and YouTube Gaming. These companies are said to hold events, activities, rewards, exclusives and more, all of which will inform gamers on best practices during Quarantine.
The campaign is said to be backed by some big gaming companies including Activision Blizzard, Twitch, Riot Games, and YouTube Gaming. These companies are said to hold events, activities, rewards, exclusives and more, all of which will inform gamers on best practices during Quarantine. (Bloomberg)

Apple, Google, Facebook and others are continuously encouraging people to self-isolate and stay at home. And at the centre of everything is the World Health Organisation or WHO. But tech companies and governments partnering with WHO doesn't seem to be enough, so WHO has now joined hands with the gaming industry for the 'Play Apart Together' campaign, as first reported by The Next Web. The campaign is said to be backed by some big gaming companies including Activision Blizzard, Twitch, Riot Games, and YouTube Gaming. These companies are said to hold events, activities, rewards, exclusives and more, all of which will inform gamers on best practices during Quarantine and how to physically stay distant from each other.

"It's never been more critical to ensure people stay safely connected to one another. Games are the perfect platform because they connect people through the lens of joy, purpose and meaning. We are proud to participate in such a worthwhile and necessary initiative," said Activision CEO Bobby Kotick said in a statement.

Also read: Niantic is making changes to Pokemon Go, Wizards Unite etc to let you play from home

Interestingly, WHO was the body that one classified "gaming disorder" as a disease. So, a move to join hands with gaming companies comes as one of the ironic cases in the industry right now. Here's how WHO explains 'gaming disorder'.

"Gaming disorder is defined in the 11th Revision of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-11) as a pattern of gaming behavior ("digital-gaming" or "video-gaming") characterized by impaired control over gaming, increasing priority given to gaming over other activities to the extent that gaming takes precedence over other interests and daily activities, and continuation or escalation of gaming despite the occurrence of negative consequences."

That said, online gaming is definitely seeing a massive rise these days. So much so that Sony had to throttle the game download speeds in the US and Europe to maintain internet stability. Microsoft is also taking steps to tackle the sudden rise in number of players. Content delivery network Akamai has also announced slowing down video game downloads to help reduce burden on the telecommunication infrastructure.