The Sun blasts games over child rickets scare

Quickly, panic stations people! Everybody strip naked and writhe around in your garden in an effort to soak up sunlight. Failing that, get to high ground in a low cut, sleeveless top and the skimpiest bikini bottoms you can find. The bastion of medical health studies has just informed us that our children are getting rickets from playing games indoors. We must lead by example!

In a sterling piece of heroic journalism, the white knight of British newspapers, The Sun, has bravely spoken out against games that deprive the nation’s children of delicious vitamin D – created when sunlight reacts with skin.

What’s more, rickets – the crippling bone disease thought to be extinct since the 1930s, caused by severe vitamin D deficiency – has been found in a fifth of children in a study in Southampton.

The newspaper report titled, ‘Game addict kids hit by ‘extinct’ bone disease’ is illustrated by a child holding a PS2 controller, with two more pictures depicting the horrifying effects the disease has on people. Interestingly enough though, the article itself only mentions games once, attributing the comment to a medical professional.

“Paediatric orthopedic surgeon Professor Clarke, of Southampton General Hospital, checked more than 200 local kids for the study. He said children must be encouraged to get more sun, by cutting down on computer games and walking to and from school.”

Such an indirect quote surely justifies a story angle that demonises games. It was either that or ‘Kids driven to school get a case of the rickets’. The article later goes on to explain that the classic diet of oily fish, dairy products and eggs that most children don’t eat is possibly another contributing factor, with takeaways and ready meals containing fewer nutrients than fresh food.

It’s quite sad that our hobby has its name dragged through the mud like this, especially when it’s such a common occurrence these days. Television, movies, gripping books, captivating board games, cold weather and even a preference to the shade are all things responsible for children staying indoors. We’re not saying there isn’t a problem, but going straight for the gaming jugular above the many, many other issues seems positively vindictive.

The offending article that looks to be jumping on the ‘games are evil’ band wagon can be found here. What are your thoughts?

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Written by Anthony H

Anthony has been playing games for far too much of his life, starting with the MS-DOS classic Mario is Missing. Since then his tastes have evolved to include just about anything, but his soft spot lies with shooters and the odd strategy game. Anthony will inspire you with his prose, uplift you with his wit and lie to you in his biography.


  1. It’s ironic The Sun should do a report like this when if they just literally blasted child gamers it would clear their vitamin D deficiency right up.

    Boom, boom! (image below for added effect)

  2. KrazyFace /

    17th Centuary England had rickets because of poverty, poverty that lead to bad diet (and also the fact that since FOREVER, England hardly gets much sun) and that diet brought about rickets. Though I’m sure they all said that the bone disease was something to do with Satan, or children that didn’t say their night time prayers…

    “You didn’t say your prayers Jeramiah, now look! You’ve got the bendy-devil-bones, well it’s your own fault!”

    Anyway, “We are seeing cases across the board, from areas of deprivation up to the middle classes.” Said Doc PointFinger, that kinda tells me it’s the SAME problem of DIET here and not because they have a PS2 in their house. I’m sure a bit of sunshine would help but remember; THIS IS BRITIAN PEOPLE, we don’t get sunshine… much.

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