Incompetent parents and Rapacious Lawyers.
The parents of two children in Canada filed a legal notice against Epic Games that likens the hugely popular game to major narcotics. They claim that the game ‘Fortnite’ is as addictive as cocaine, morphine, fentanyl etc. They are being encouraged by money hungry lawyers to launch a class action lawsuit.
"Epic Games, when they created Fortnite, for years and years, hired psychologists - they really dug into the human brain and they really made the effort to make it as addictive as possible," Alessandra Chartrand, a lawyer with Calex Legal, told the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. She went on to claim that the merchandisers of the game did all they could to make the game as desirable as possible (isn’t that what every manufacturer does with their product?) and that the poor parents who came forward said that if they knew it was so addictive they would never have let them start playing the game or at least they would have monitored it a lot more closely! They went on as though they had no role or responsibility for any of this, when they were clearly the enablers.
A word about these parents. After fifty-five years of general practice I know a thing or two about this topic. I would have been able to identify the syndrome when the family brought the kids in for their pre-school check up or for their immunizations. When some families came in to the office, it quickly became apparent that the kids were the boss, not the parents. I remember one mother giving her three year old her cell phone to shut him up so that she could talk to me. I remember the kid throwing the phone (a considerable upgrade from the one I was using) across the room. I remember saying “he’ll wreck the phone” and the response,”it’ll keep him quiet for a while!!” I remember I used to keep my kids civilized by giving them a slap on the bum when necessary! Not often, but when it was necessary to prevent them from running into the ongoing traffic, both literally and metaphorically.
Ah yes, I am proud to have been ‘politically incorrect’ for much of my life.
So, I would say to the ‘Fortnite Suers’: “look at yourself, you bought them their the games, or at least sanctioned them and failed to control their use. If you didn’t recognize that they were spending hours gaming everyday you are either incompetent or indifferent or both. Or maybe just glad to get them off your back. If you did recognize it and failed to stop it you were worse than incompetent. Perhaps it took the smell of litigious wealth generated by some rapacious lawyers combined with the relief of shifting the blame for your negligent parenting to the gaming company."
The parents case:"They knowingly put on the market a very, very addictive game which was also geared toward youth. In our case, the two parents that came forward [said], 'if we knew it was so addictive it would ruin our child's life, we would never have let them start playing Fortnite or we would have monitored it a lot more closely."
Ms Chartrand likens the case to a 2015 class-action lawsuit against big tobacco companies that accused the firms of not doing enough to warn consumers of the addictive nature of smoking. No comparison!
Let's see if our legal system will continue to reward inappropriate behaviour. I'm afraid I already know the answer!