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Children Concerned By Parents' Web Habits 381

Posted by timothy
from the my-dad-has-86,380-emails-in-his-inbox dept.
praps writes "Children are becoming increasingly worried about their parents' Internet habits, according to a report just released in Sweden. Unsurprisingly, dads surfing for pornography is the most common problem, but chatroom addiction also featured in the report — as is a mother who has become obsessed with World of Warcraft. 'This summer she has been sitting up all day and all night and she forgets what's important to me,' wrote the woman's 13-year-old daughter. 'And when she's not at the computer she's like a lost soul. She just looks straight ahead and says nothing.'" There are also a lot of scammers out there who like nothing better than to find retirees who they can sucker into get-rich-quick schemes involving real-estate, stock options, and convincing the neighbors to be part of a "downstream" for MLM marketing ploys.
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Children Concerned By Parents' Web Habits

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  • Oblig (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward

    I just need to run another 10,000 google queries for Brazilian Fart Porn and I'll ding level 70..

  • WoW (Score:5, Funny)

    by EriktheGreen (660160) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @05:16PM (#23941813) Journal
    The WoW thing could be bad... depends on whether she's chatting/enjoying herself, or whether she's actually addicted. The Dad surfing for porn thing is normal though.
    • Re:WoW (Score:5, Interesting)

      by EraserMouseMan (847479) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @05:18PM (#23941851)
      I've never played WoW. I've got a few friends who do. One told his wife he'd quit after he got to level 70. He's achieved level 70 and now he's going for all upgraded gear and getting "epiced" (or something). Is there any end? Or is the game built so you never really become king of the hill? Is there always another carrot out there to keep you coming back?

      • Re:WoW (Score:5, Interesting)

        by EriktheGreen (660160) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @05:22PM (#23941899) Journal
        Let's put it this way: If possible they never want to lose a subscriber, ever.

        You can't win the game... it's like a never ending soap opera or comic book. Actually providing resolution so people walk away is not in the plan.

        There's always another carrot.

        Erik

        • Re:WoW (Score:5, Insightful)

          by caffeinemessiah (918089) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @05:39PM (#23942157) Journal

          'And when she's not at the computer she's like a lost soul. She just looks straight ahead and says nothing.'"

          Correlation and causation, folks. Sigh. It's highly unlikely that WoW took a perfectly normal mother and converted her into a zombie like this. These symptoms are indicative of deeper psychological issues that manifest in an unhealthy obsession with WoW. So WoW not having an "ending" is hardly an issue -- people can get addicted to anything that offers escapism, and the fact that this mother is addicted to WoW is not a cause to point fingers at WoW. And I speak as someone who stopped playing warcraft after warcraft 2 back in the 90s.

          • Because (Score:5, Insightful)

            by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @05:53PM (#23942361)

            People can, and do, quit MMOs. I quit WoW not long ago. No big reason, no epic struggle, I was just kinda bored of it. I hadn't been playing enough to justify my subscription so I stop the recurring charge. I'll probably go back and play it some time later, or maybe another MMO, I'm just not in the mood for them right now. I didn't "win" I didn't have everything in the game, not even close. I just really don't feel like playing it at this point in time.

            So there isn't any magical digital crack in these games that forces you to play. Some people just have the sort of personalities or mental problems or life problems or whatever that they get far too heavily in to it and won't give it up and thus their life suffers. It isn't a flaw with the game, it is a flaw with the individual.

            • Re:Because (Score:4, Interesting)

              by bug1 (96678) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @06:19PM (#23942635)

              >> So WoW not having an "ending" is hardly an issue -- people can get addicted to anything that offers escapism, and the fact that this mother is addicted to WoW is not a cause to point fingers at WoW.

              > People can, and do, quit MMOs. I quit WoW not long ago. No big reason, no epic struggle, I was just kinda bored of it.

              The question is, did you quit WoW because you found a more interesting way to escape, or did you no longer need an escape ?

              • Re:Because (Score:5, Insightful)

                by pthor1231 (885423) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @06:26PM (#23942733)
                Who says he used it as an escape? Is there there no possibility that he just enjoying playing the game?
              • WoW was just entertainment to me, like reading books, watching movies, playing (other) video games, etc. I didn't play it to "escape" anything, just to amuse myself. I, like many Americans, have the luxury of having all my more basic needs (per Maslow's hierarchy) met fairly easily and thus have a good deal of time to spend on entertaining myself. For me, it is generally video games, though books as well. TV and movies occasionally, but I don't tend to find them good entertainment for the dollars or for the

            • Re:Because (Score:5, Interesting)

              by Sta7ic (819090) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @07:17PM (#23943307)

              I've found that the real humor in quitting WoW is in their 'last gasp' message. I decided that school and money came before a silly game, so hit the unsubscribe reason and picked "I need the time for school". They helpfully displayed a little message that went along the lines of, 'You don't have to go! A lot of other people who pick this reason found that they have lots of friends they want to talk to in WoW!'

              Irksome that they do it, but yeah, they just don't want to lose any subscribers.

              • Thats it! I'll never try WoW, I was thinking in giving it a try but when a game tries so desperately to get on to your life you sure know It can be really addictive. Is this just by the monthly fee? Theres is no other way of playing? Set your own server? On a PIII machine like good old Quake2? Guess I'll never quit on Q2. --

                More on topic, I agree that kids get concerned by parents staring at a monitor, even my daughter gets mad at me when I start to play or I'm working, She tries to get my attention and
                • by GeckoX (259575) on Thursday June 26, 2008 @08:27AM (#23947961)

                  Problem is, too many people try to take that time during the typically quite limited amount of time you actually have available in any given day to interact with your children.

                  Coming home after work, eating dinner, then setting the kid in front of the TV while you go and game for a while...not good. Not good at all. There is no reason for it, and no excuse for it. Spend that time with your child. Play with them, interact with them. Trust me, it's WAY more satisfying and you get so much more out of it than you could from any game (or porn or whatever). You've got lots of time after they go to bed for yourself.

                  Some people don't learn this until it's too late. Some people never learn this. My son is 5 already, never ceases to amaze me how fast that 5 years has gone by. I always always always choose to spend time with him over time for myself, and not once have I even remotely had any sort of regret for that. I know I won't feel regret over it when he's 10, 15 20...either.

                  Don't get me wrong, kids do need to learn how to take time for themselves. But they will. That's when I usually get chores done, or get meals made etc. I always seem to have ample time in the evenings for myself.

                  Kids really are the best source of entertainment you could ever hope to find, as long as you're willing to take part.

            • Re:Because (Score:5, Funny)

              by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @07:20PM (#23943349)

              So there isn't any magical digital crack in these games that forces you to play...

              However, "magical digital crack" is the cause of my porn addiction.

            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by Anonymous Coward

              There isn't magical chemical crack in crack either. Just because using cocaine (or its freebase form - crack) is pleasurable, doesn't mean it has some conscious-hijacking compulsive prowess, DEA brainwashing to the contrary aside. Just like with the WoW example, people who become addicted to drugs are those who already suffer from existing psychological problems. If it weren't WoW, crack or heroin, it would be something else that supposedly screwed up their lives.

              • Re:Because (Score:5, Insightful)

                by BlueParrot (965239) on Thursday June 26, 2008 @04:10AM (#23946397)

                Bullshit, there are essentially 3 ways in which drugs cause addiction.

                1: First of all many drugs are indeed very pleasant. In fact, some of them, like cocaine, cause such extreme releases of serotonin and dopamine that this effect will on its own make virtually everybody who use it addicted to it relatively quickly. We are hardwired to get somewhat addicted to things that are pleasant (like sex), the problem is that some drugs have so strong effects that this effect goes beyond everything else. It is not about having an addictive personality, because everybody have a tendency to feel some form of desire or need of things pleasant, and drugs like cocaine strikes strongly at this by preventing the reabsorption of signal substances in the brain, resulting in a massive spike in the levels of the hormones that make us feel well.

                2:Many drugs cause pain when you try to stop using them. Nicotine and Alcohol are probably the most well known examples, but Heroin has similar effects. Because the body tries to adjust to the effects of the drug, ceasing to use it can mess you up fairly bad. Smokers tend to get a bad stomach when they stop, alcoholics experience headaches, and heroin abuses can literarely go mad trying to stop using the drug. There are a lot of further symptomes but what they have in common is that ceasing to use the drug creates unpleasant symptomes. These effects have been clearly demonstrated and are not merely psychological. Many drugs affect more parts of the body than just the brain and some of these side effects show up when you quit.

                3:Some drugs prevent you from feeling pleasant from other things without the drug. Long time smokers can find it difficult to relax without nicotine as an example. As the body creates extra receptors to compensate for the effect of the drug, more of it is required to trigger the same response ( being one reason why smokers tend to smoke more and more the longer they have been addicted ) and other things that would normally make you feel pleasant may have a dimnished effect unless the drug is pressent simultaneously.

                It is true that a number of authorities have inconsistent policies, but mostly this takes the form of having less stringent rules for nicotine and alcohol than for drugs like cannabis. It doesn't mean cocaine or heroin are harmless, and indeed the problem with people not trusting the authorities when it comes to advice on these drugs is one of the reasons why pretending that cannabis is way worse than alcohol or nicotine is retarded. By undermining their creidbility by greatly exagerating the dangers of cannabis, the authorities are causing a lot of people to underestimate the dangers of drugs like heroin. This is a major problem since the latter, unlike cannabis, will almost certainly destroy a person, and a heroin addiction makes nicotine look like a slight temptation in comparison.

          • Re:WoW (Score:4, Informative)

            by spun (1352) <`moc.oohay' `ta' `yranoituloverevol'> on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @05:54PM (#23942367) Journal

            Some things are more prone to cause addiciton than others. Video games are not just simple escapism, they are specifically designed to hit our reward centers in consistent ways. They can be very addicting.
            But that is no reason to impose any kind of rules or restrictions on them. It is simply a reason to educate people. "Hey, you might want to watch yourself if you play video games, and just make sure they aren't taking over your life to the detriment of your job, health and relationships."

            That is really the most that needs to be done for ANY addictive substance. Any other 'solution' causes more problems than it cures.

            • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

              by mrbluze (1034940)

              Some things are more prone to cause addiciton than others. Video games are not just simple escapism, they are specifically designed to hit our reward centers in consistent ways.

              These things are well on the way to being recognized as psychological/psychiatric disorders. They do cause significant social problems and that is, essentially, all that's needed to diagnose a behavioural disorder.

              WoW is not bad, computers aren't bad, etc. But, as much as liberal ideals should be the norm, regulation has to be a part of game design and if gaming companies don't act responsibly (eg: somehow curtailing excessive use by individuals) then we'll see governments stepping in and ruining it for

            • Re:WoW (Score:5, Insightful)

              by caffeinemessiah (918089) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @06:12PM (#23942537) Journal

              they are specifically designed to hit our reward centers in consistent ways.

              In other words, they are designed to be consistently enjoyable. I could say the same thing about sunny beaches, and yet not everyone goes giving up their lives to become beach bums.

              • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

                by Gewalt (1200451)
                Being a beach bum costs significantly more than 15$/month.
              • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                by spun (1352)

                But how frequently is a sunny beach going to hit your reward centers? Is it going to let off for a little bit and then hit again, or is it going to stay at the same level of stimulus pretty constantly, fading into the background? Video games can be engineered to be addictive in a way that no non-interactive media or experience can be.
                Not everyone who tries crack goes on to be a crack addict, either. Addictive tendencies run in families. Likely, people who have these tendencies already know they do, which is

                • Re:WoW (Score:5, Insightful)

                  by caffeinemessiah (918089) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @10:10PM (#23944673) Journal

                  Video games can be engineered to be addictive in a way that no non-interactive media or experience can be.

                  That is a sad perspective, and certainly not true. I'm a rock climbing instructor part time, and people who don't climb find it difficult to understand the passion and sheer addictiveness of climbing. There are very large portions of the general populace who get no joy at all from video games, and that majority would find your claim...questionable. I won't even bother to go into more examples of experiences that are consistently enjoyable, non-chemical and still addictive.

          • Re:WoW (Score:4, Interesting)

            by lymond01 (314120) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @06:13PM (#23942547)

            When your online life is more stimulating than your offline life, you tend to stay online longer. Join a team of something (softball, volleyball, swimming, debate, soup kitchen, crafts, etc). Get yourself *involved* with your offline life. Unlike an MMO which is designed to keep you involved with the online life, offline you sort of have to choose your own density. I mean...destiny.

          • Re:WoW (Score:5, Insightful)

            by billcopc (196330) <vrillco@yahoo.com> on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @06:28PM (#23942765) Homepage

            CmdrTaco needs to raise the mod point cap to 50, because even at +5 you deserve to be modded up.

            I started playing WoW a few years ago, at a time when I was depressed out of my skull, but I just didn't know it yet. I eventually reached a point where I was too depressed to haul my sorry ass to work in the morning, so I called in dead and played WoW 16 hours a day for months. I didn't code, I didn't hack, I barely left the apartment. Eventually the anti-depressant meds kicked in and I was wired into semi-sanity. By the time I got back to 90% normal and had found myself a new job, I stopped playing WoW, just quit cold turkey.

            I fired it up again a few weeks ago, to try out a private server... I found it all extremely boring and quit after a few days. That tells me the WoW playing was a symptom of my depression, not the cause. It was the only thing easy enough to do, that didn't get shot down by my total lack of motivation.

            I think the WoW mom needs to see her doctor, and a therapist.

          • Re:WoW (Score:5, Interesting)

            by Gewalt (1200451) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @07:00PM (#23943131)
            People say that alot, but... I went through a few phases... I was completely addicted to my family and my job til a friend convinced me to do a 30 day trial of wow. Then I became addicted to that and only that. Sure, maybe I'm just one depressed son of a gun. Maybe I just needed an escape, sure.. But I kinda liked my old escapes better than when WoW was my escape.

            I did manage to quit wow, and have since turned my addictions to spending time with my kids... but I gotta tell you... It was hairy there for a while...
          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by Urkki (668283)

            'And when she's not at the computer she's like a lost soul. She just looks straight ahead and says nothing.'"

            Correlation and causation, folks. Sigh. It's highly unlikely that WoW took a perfectly normal mother and converted her into a zombie like this. These symptoms are indicative of deeper psychological issues that manifest in an unhealthy obsession with WoW.

            Oh, it is more than likely. When you're addicted to a game (be it non-computer, offline or online game), or to a discussion forum or to a chat service, then that fills your life. When you're not on it, you're thinking of what you'll do when you again have a chance to get on. Even when there's some time you're waiting (like in many online games) before you can do stuff, waiting for that time to arrive fills your life.

            That's addiction. Not everybody gets addicted, but it is possible, and it is common, and j

      • by geekoid (135745)

        There is no 'winner'. Everything is available to everyone, so know one is going to get something no one else can get, with a few very rare exceptions.

        SO if he is trying to get the eleet unique gear nobody ekse has, he is on a fools errand.

        Now there are end Bosses, so in theory defeating those could be considered winning.

        He has not kept his word to his wife, and to me, that is the bigger issue.

      • Re:WoW (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Opportunist (166417) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @05:54PM (#23942369)

        It doesn't end. That's the whole point.

        People pay per month. In other words, the maker of an MMORPG gets money as long as someone plays it. So the goal is to make people play as long as possible.

        How is this done? By dangling carrots in front of people. There is yet another boss to kill, yet another item to get. And that's what WoW like every long running MMORPG is about: Items.

        You get them by killing bosses. But not every time. They drop it once in a while. So you have to kill bosses over and over to get your item. And you don't just need one. You need a set. A helm, a chestpiece, a pair of boots, a sword, a shield. Each of them dropped at some other boss.

        To get to such a boss, you have to defeat his minions, pretty much like in a plain old platform game. The size of those areas makes sure that in any given evening, you can only do it once or maybe twice. In other words, two shots an evening to get an item that drops about every tenth time, and you need about 8 such items to have your gear.

        Well, the gear to get the next gear. You see, you can't just level to 70 and then go into the top dungeon. You won't make it. You first have to get other gear that gives you the bonus points you pretty much need to even stand a chance in other dungeons. WoW is now, IIRC, at "Tier 6". I.e. you do that whole thing six times before you're at the top.

        To make it less trivial, you can't do that alone. You have to find a group to do something like this. And since you can't just depend on some random freaks (I mean, would you want to waste an entire evening to find out the healer you signed up is a complete tool?), you usually do that in more or less constant groups. People form guilds, clans, whatever the name, i.e. groups of people you more or less can trust.

        This is another quite strong incentive for many people to keep playing, since they don't want to let their "friends" down. They "depend" on you to some degree.

        And since not everyone has time every evening, such "raids" are usually not done every night. Most of the time, you can get a shot at a boss about twice a week.

        So let's calc'. Twice a week, two runs an evening. Let's be generous and say you can raid five times a week (unless you are in one of the guilds that really have no life anymore). Five tries on something that drops about once out of ten times (and let's assume the unrealistic situation that you "may" always take it, i.e. that nobody else with "more right" to the item gets it, should it drop) means that you're busy about two weeks to get one of your set items. Now let's furthermore assume you don't go on raids into dungeons that you don't need at all because nothing you need drops there, but your healer friend needs it and he won't come along for your sword (because there's nothing to gain there for him) if you don't help him. But let's assume that doesn't happen.

        Then you're busy two weeks per item, eight items a set, six sets to go.

        Do the math yourself when you'll be "done". The only question that remains is, will it be before or after Tier 7 comes along? Or tier 8, tier 9...

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by Spy der Mann (805235)

          I recall reading this article about some guy spending too much time on his second job - an online job. He would often get called, and new responsibilities were given to him. He had to take care of new people, he was always given new duties and he could never quit - people depended on him. It was a burden so heavy that it felt like if the world could end without him. It didn't matter that he got no pay for the job - it was too important to ask for pay.

          That second job was World of Warcraft.

        • Re:WoW (Score:5, Informative)

          by Cookie3 (82257) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @07:25PM (#23943391) Homepage

          >You first have to get other gear that gives you the bonus points you pretty much need
          >to even stand a chance in other dungeons. WoW is now, IIRC, at "Tier 6". I.e. you do
          >that whole thing six times before you're at the top.

          Just a point of clarification:
          WoW's tiered systems work in conjunction with a "gear reset" (or "mudflation", if you prefer the negative term) each expansion. Quest rewards from each expansion will roughly equal the tiered rewards you earn from raiding previously.

          For example:
          In classic WoW, a level 60 player might go to MC, BWL, and Naxx (raid dungeons), and get Tier 1-3 armor.
          In BC (the first expansion), a level 60 player can still go to the old raid dungeons for gear, OR they can do solo/small group quests for similar rewards (while simultaneously leveling to 70). If you do many quests and dungeons, you will be wearing gear that is similar to Tier 3 once you arrive at level 70, and be ready immediately for Tier 4 content, even if they've never set foot in any of the previous Tiers (raids) before.

          Blizz has already said the same sort of gear reset will occur for WotLK. A new level 80 player in WotLK will be wearing Tier 6-equivalent quested gear, and will be immediately ready for Tier 7 content.

        • Re:WoW (Score:4, Informative)

          by johndmann (946896) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @07:37PM (#23943525)

          Not debunking that it is excessive, but your math is flawed due to your lack of play mechanics (no offense meant, you're just underinformed is all).

          Yes, there are 6 tiers of equipment, but the first three are remnants from level 60, all but useless, and almost noone even tries for them, except for maybe nostalgia. Tier 4 is even becoming dated enough that most people skip it and jump right into Tier 5. Thus, there are usually only 2 tiers to go through.

          Another number change for your formula is that there are not eight items in each set. T4 and T5 only have 5 pieces. T6 has 8.

          Also, there is Player vs. Player (PvP) gear available which is as good as each of the tiers. Most players go to the battlegrounds between raids, which is more time, yes, but results in less actual raiding. PvP gear is "guaranteed", whereas the Tier stuff, you just have a chance at getting. If you waste enough time each day in-game (oh, say 12-14 hours a day), you can get the equivalent of Tier 5 in PvP gear in less than a week.

          Supposedly, there will be no more Tiers ever again, that they are going to a new system, but still, there will be upgrades at some point, yes.

          Your statements have the correct intent, just a bit exaggerated due to the game working differently than your math made it seem. It's actually much shorter of a time, and much easier to get the top level gear than it used to be way back when.

          A great number of people are stopping their subscriptions with WoW due to how easy it is to "max out" the game, even when new content rolls out, they just devour it in hardly any time at all. In the past it used to be a challenging game compared to what it is now. Blizzard has slowly "dumbed down" the game so that they can obtain a larger user base who want a casual game.

      • Is there any end? Or is the game built so you never really become king of the hill? Is there always another carrot out there to keep you coming back?

        What you're asking is: is the game built so that you eventually stop paying money? Or is it built so that there's always a reason to keep paying the owner? When you phrase them correctly, most questions answer themselves...

    • Re:WoW (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Awptimus Prime (695459) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @05:28PM (#23942001)

      The Dad surfing for porn thing is normal
      Agreed. My dad had a big stash of hardcore magazines he kept locked away in one of his shop cabinets, my grandfather kept a big stash of lower quality stuff in his garage. Just because this generation gets it on the computer, doesn't mean the concepts are anything new.

      I can agree, somewhat, that the younger people have some gripe about their parents fiddling around in chatrooms or WoW, but kids of previous generations often dealt with parents that were either gone fishing, drinking, or like one of my parents and buried in novels endlessly. It was much the same thing, if she wasn't holding a book, she'd be rather distant, would read through the family tv time, would skip meals to find out what the next chapter holds and when one book was finished, it was off to the next one. It seems more like humans exhibiting the same particular types of behavior through different conduits.

    • The WoW thing could be bad... depends on whether she's chatting/enjoying herself, or whether she's actually addicted.
      She's ignoring her kid and dissociated from the world. It's bad.
      • I dunno. From the description, it's a 13 year old kid. I might try to dissociate from her too, depending.

        If it was a 5 year old, sure, but a teenager?

        Maybe.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by R2.0 (532027)

        Meh - she said that her Mom was totally ignoring what SHE wanted.

        Let me clue you in, toots - I have a 13 year old daughter too, I've never played a second of WoW, and I ignore what my daughter WANTS all the time. But I never ignore what she needs.

        It's called parenting, and you won't get it until you have kids of your own.
        (Alt-tab back to the porn I was surfing)

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by tukang (1209392)
      The Dad surfing for porn thing is normal though. Especially if the mom is playing WoW all day ...
  • So I installed linux on it. The last support call I got was because my dad couldn't figure out which port the speakers plugged in to (and apparently he's becoming color blind). I think they're just making stuff up now to guilt me into visiting. They're happy with it and my mom is even an advocate for it at her school.

  • by geekoid (135745) <dadinportland AT yahoo DOT com> on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @05:22PM (#23941913) Homepage Journal

    "dads surfing for pornography is the most common problem"
    Why is that a problem? so dad likes some porn, big deal.

    Hmmm, yes I've seen this with WoW. I highly suggest that 13 year old change the router so it 'drops out' during certain times of the day..also she needs to get her mother in intervention.

    Obviously, my porn comment is for casual viewing, if it impacts going to work, taking care of the kids etc, it's a problem too. The fact that it's porn or WoW doesn't matter.

    • by Penguinisto (415985) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @05:33PM (#23942077) Journal

      Well, it depends - is dad doing the surfing discreetly after the kids have gone to bed, or is he trolling for pr0n in the living room at midday when the kids are sitting only a few meters away?


      The latter would be pretty indicative of a problem, y'know?

      /P

    • by mqduck (232646)

      Why is that a problem? so dad likes some porn, big deal.
      It isn't a big deal, but I sure as hell wouldn't want to come across the fact that my parents view porn, if they do.
  • by Sir_Eptishous (873977) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @05:24PM (#23941945) Homepage
    I don't have a parent with an "internet problem", but my DM does. He is always looking to stop the game so he can play WOW and get that slack jawed look.

    He told me he has 7 70's.

    Is this a problem?
  • by syousef (465911) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @05:27PM (#23941995) Journal

    I wonder how many of these problems are kids whining for attention the way they might whine for ice cream, and how many of these issues are genuine problems. In many cases, if there is a genuine problem, I suspect it'd manifest in other ways if the Internet didn't exist. For those seeking escapism, it might be that the parent goes to the dog track or casino instead of the endless web surfing.

    As for kids coming across daddy's little porn stash, I worry for the parents more than the children. If the parent isn't being inappropriate with the child (Yes showing them porn isn't appropriate but I'm talking about interfeering with them) it's the parent that could end up in jail in our paranoid society. The truth is that if kids are to be equipped to deal with the modern world, they should learn about sex early so that they can avoid predators and dangerous misinformation. They just should not engage in sexual activity early. People have become so scared that their children might engage in sex early that they're willing to go to extreme measures and label ordinary parents as sexual predators. Honestly how many slashdotters would have had fathers who had a stash of playboy magazines and who'd secretly sneaked a peak at them when they were young. This is the internet equivalent.

    • by qbzzt (11136) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @05:36PM (#23942101)

      Kids need to learn about sex. The problem is that porn often teaches the wrong things about sex.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Hatta (162192)

      The truth is that if kids are to be equipped to deal with the modern world, they should learn about sex early so that they can avoid predators and dangerous misinformation. They just should not engage in sexual activity early.

      I protection is used, why shouldn't children engage in sexual activity as soon as they express an interest in each other?

      • by syousef (465911) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @05:56PM (#23942381) Journal

        I protection is used, why shouldn't children engage in sexual activity as soon as they express an interest in each other?

        Perhaps because they don't understand the consequences and implications of what they're doing, the protection isn't 100% effective, their minds and bodies aren't ready to deal with the gamut of emotions, and because they're vulnerable to predation from adults who take advantage of this.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by WrongMonkey (1027334)
          That's true of most adults as well. Nothing magic happens when you turn 18. But protection and eduction are better than closing your eyes and pretending that teenagers don't have sex.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Penguinisto (415985)

      If only I had mod points...

      Hell, there was a time when fathers kept playboys in the Den in a basket next to the recliner (well, okay, not a perfect analogue since Playboy is pretty soft-core and it did have articles worth reading). Nowadays that would likely get you jailed.

      One nitpick though: equipping a child to deal with sexual subjects upon maturity doesn't necessarily involve pornography, especially the stuff that is pretty commonly found online.

      I mean, it's one thing to discuss the emotions and mechani

  • WoW (Score:4, Interesting)

    by mqduck (232646) <mqduck AT mqduck DOT net> on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @05:30PM (#23942043)

    Unsurprisingly, dads surfing for pornography is the most common problem, but chatroom addiction also featured in the report â" as is a mother who has become obsessed with World of Warcraft.
    I had a therapist once who told me (either that or I read it) that she treated a patient with such severe social anxiety that the only way she could talk to her son was in World of Warcraft.

    I guess that's... better than nothing, right?

    • by Gat0r30y (957941)

      I had a therapist once who told me (either that or I read it) that she treated a patient with such severe social anxiety that the only way she could talk to her son was in World of Warcraft.
      Eh, thats nothing, the only way I will talk to my parents is through slashdot trolls
    • by cashman73 (855518)
      Didn't Trey and Matt make a South Park episode about this? Yup; thought so. ;-)
  • by night_flyer (453866) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @05:37PM (#23942135) Homepage

    parents behaving this was is bad enough, but this statement here says alot about the kids today
    "This summer she has been sitting up all day and all night and she forgets what's important to me"

  • by moore.dustin (942289) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @05:38PM (#23942151) Homepage
    All that is happening is people are discovering the internet and exploring it at different periods of their lives. Most people, when they first get connected, end up in a chat room and/or some IM program within the first few days of using it. Just like when many of us discovered it, we were amazed and used the same sort of things these people are using in their early internet life. Games, porn, chat rooms and IMing are often the extent that people use the internet for on a regular basis. They are comfortable with the technology and seem content with what they have found, at least for a bit.

    As the years go by and you expand your personal scope of/for the internet, you ditch all the things you did when you first got on and really get down to business finally. Call it internet puberty if you wish... these people are just exploring things just like we all did at one point. Honestly, I think it is funny to see friends of mine who just finally get online and start talking about chat rooms or some flash game they found. It takes me back to the days when all the internet was there for was to entertain me. Now I am connected to the/a network nearly all the time, I make my living from it and if it went down for more than 6 hours, I might get the shakes. :)
  • A new spin (Score:4, Funny)

    by GroeFaZ (850443) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @05:43PM (#23942211)
    This time around, the slogan is "Think of the parents!" ?
  • Please! (Score:5, Funny)

    by mazarin5 (309432) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @05:44PM (#23942225) Journal

    Won't somebody please think of the parents?

  • by MacTO (1161105) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @05:48PM (#23942287)
    Have make sure my 9 year old son making dinner for the wife and I. Back in a minute.
  • by Jzanu (668651) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @05:58PM (#23942407)
    Lots of people will comment that this is not addiction in any way. What those misguided people are so desperate to do is to claim that their particular hobbies are somehow better than others and can't be addictive. Games, etc. are just as addictive when pursued to the exclusion of necessary activities like parent-child interaction. This can't be denied. Why not move the discussion on to the actual important topics of for instance how to reduce the allowance for addictiveness in games, etc. or how to create tools for people to use to gauge when they are slipping into these things? Harder with things outside of controlled environments, but this is all with damn computers so there is a vast opening for tools to combat it here.
  • easy (Score:4, Funny)

    by rastoboy29 (807168) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @06:21PM (#23942661) Homepage
    Smash Mom's monitor with a hammer. 
  • by Sloppy (14984) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @06:23PM (#23942693) Homepage Journal

    ..will go crying to the government to Do Something, to make up for their lack of parent-raising skills.

    Kids, if you don't think you can handle the responsibility, then don't become a child!

  • by Kahless2k (799262) on Wednesday June 25, 2008 @11:31PM (#23945195) Homepage

    When I read this a situation that I ran into in January came to mind.

    A couple of our regular customers come in to upgrade both of their machines (each parent had one - neither of the two low-end by any means). They priced out about 1500 dollars worth of parts and openly debated about maxing their (only) credit card out on the parts..

    Normally, this wouldn't bother me - not any of my business how they pay, so long as they do.

    Then, however, after deciding to go ahead and buy the parts - they start going on about how the husband was laid off in December and still hadn't found work - AND THAT THEY HADNT BEEN ABLE TO AFFORD ANYTHING FOR THEIR KIDS FOR CHRISTMAS less than two weeks before.

    They're reason: If they dont keep up with WoW they may get kicked out of their Guild!

    It may be none of my business, but I'm a parent myself and this just sickens me. I finally ended up having sudden 'stock shortages' and found a way to talk them out of the parts, but still...

    • by rhendershot (46429) on Thursday June 26, 2008 @06:42AM (#23946915) Journal

      they start going on about how the husband was laid off in December and still hadn't found work

      another scenario is they actually had several credit cards and the husband wasn't laid off. They thought a sob-story would get them a discount on the parts. After they realized your handling of parts sourcing and general business practices sucked, they went down the road and found a more "reliable" vendor and are now sitting happily in an internet cafe.

      Oh, and the kids? Yeah, they were made-up too.

      It makes no sense whatsoever for them to have shared that information with you aside from the hope of financial gain. What, you think it was a plea for you to throw in something for the kids' Christmas gifting?!

      I do imagine your competitor (who isn't part of the Nanny State) is quite appreciative of the end-of-the-year bonus though. That's probably a good thing. The competent should survive after-all....

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