Iraq has joined the list of countries that have banned PlayerUnkown’s Battlegrounds for it’s alleged damage to the youth of the country. This latest ban comes hot off the heels of both Nepal and parts of India which banned the game due to the detrimental effect it was believed the games could have on their nations’ children. While Iraq does appear to also be using this reason for the ban, it is taking a slight departure from the countries it is following in that it has banned PUBG‘s main rival, Fortnite, as well.
Fornite was conspicuously absent from previous bans despite being arguably more popular with children then PUBG, although PUBG got a headstart in Asian markets. After the news broke about the ban in Nepal Reddit users expressed concern that the bans would continue, and that other games would start to be pulled into it. It will be interesting to see the reaction from the game developers since the mobile version of PUBG is run by Tencent, the company which owns a large stake in Epic Games, owners of Fortnite. In the exact wording of the Iraq parliament, both games were banned “due to the negative effects caused by some electronic games on the health, culture, and security of Iraqi society, including societal and moral threats to children and youth.”.
Moqtada al-Sadr, leader of the political party that one the most seats in Iraq’s last election, implored children not to play PUBG specifically, saying doing so would gain them nothing but wasted time. He went on to slam the game as “not a game for intelligence or a military game that provides you with the correct way to fight,”. Only time will tell if this spate of recent bannings will continue in other countries or with other games being added to the list.
Does this latest spate of politically motivated bannings worry you? Do you think that more countries are going to jump on the bandwagon of banning games? Let us know your thoughts in the comments down below.