Why Banning PUBG is Complete Nonsense

PUBG was recently banned in Pakistan by PTA due to its potential adverse effects on the youth. The temporary ban was imposed after two teenagers decided to commit suicide over the game. But that, unfortunately, was not the end of the bad news as another teenager also ended his life when he was not allowed to play PUBG.

After these extremely unfortunate incidents, PTA announced that PUBG was being temporarily banned in Pakistan.

PUBG Community Reaction

Its no secret, PUBG has been insanely popular since its launch, so much so that it even got Pakistan specific servers. Needless to say, fans were absolutely livid at the extreme and somewhat unnecessary, step. And the PUBG community made their opinions vocal, with the hashtag “unbanPUBG” trending on twitter and people saying “gaming is not a crime”.

Does The Ban Make Sense?

According to PTA, PUBG is addictive, a waste of time, and has a negative impact on the physical and psychological health of children. But according to Google Playstore, PUBG is rated as a 16+ game, it is not meant to be played by children in the first place. And therein lies the main issue. Should children below the age of 16 be allowed by their parents to play the game?

Another point PTA raised was addiction, if teenagers are addicted to the game, the onus of their actions and behavior mainly falls upon their parents, not the developer of the game or the government. If anyone is too absorbed in any form of entertainment, whether it be gaming, watching movies, or social media, is it better to parent properly or ban that form of entertainment completely?

People can easily find other games similar to PUBG in minutes, as the Google Play Store and Apple App Store are filled with extremely popular alternatives to PUBG. But when it comes to those who want to play PUBG professionally and represent Pakistan in the international PUBG space, their progress will only be inhibited, and their talents diminished and suppressed.

This is not the first time this has happened, we had a similar situation before when YouTube was banned in Pakistan for multiple years. That extreme action only resulted in slowing down the careers of Pakistani Youtubers and people ended up using VPNs to get around the block anyway, and now PUBG players will do the same. Regressive decisions like this only set us back by years.

Where Does it Stop?

Most forms of international media can somehow have a negative impact on psychological health, or at the very least could be subjectively considered a waste of time or addictive. Most video games are violent, most movies and TV shows also could be added to the list, but banning all forms of international media is not the solution. Better oversight of children is the answer.

Does Gaming Cause Negative Psychological Effects?

A debate as old as time, yet somehow still divisive to this day. In short, there is evidence that proves that gaming is never the crux of violence, its always an accessory to pre-existing mental conditions. Some people, due to their idiosyncratic situation in life, have a predisposition to being malleable by media and easily falling prey to addictive habits.

Violent video game consumption and related violent incidents are a uniquely American problem, probably mainly owing to cultural issues. So there is no statistical proof that conclusively shows that games incite negative or harmful psychological changes.

Conclusion

PUBG is enjoyed by millions of players across the world. If our children are getting addicted to the game and falling prey to its adverse effects, the solution is not to outright ban it. This not only deprives the professional players of their potential income and careers, it only leads to casual players seeking alternatives. What’s to say they don’t find and get addicted to other action games?

We should, instead, ensure that children under the age of 16 are prevented from playing the game entirely and teenagers aged 16 or above are strictly monitored or taught to inhibit their impulses by their parents/guardians.

Banning anything is not the solution, because people will find workarounds if they want to, spreading awareness on how to consume entertainment is a far better alternative.

Disclaimer – I am in no way associated with PUBG, I neither play the game nor do I follow it.

I am the Tech Editor at ProPakistani.


  • It is very good decision. So much time is wasted on this game. People should try to do some positive activity like reading books. swimming. playing football.

    • spending inordinate amounts of time reading books was considered a disease in the 19th century. basically every technological advance is considered wrong initially before people learn better.

      the next generation of parents will have grown up playing video games so they won’t consider it a waste of time.

      • yes you are right. But these games which involve multiplayers are created to make so addictive that once you have played it enough times than it is very difficult to avoid and you will be playing at the cost of some positive activities. I used to play games like PARANOID in my childhood which are also addictive but these are way more than that.

        • Yeah reading books is a good thing but our education system made the books look like hell by not changing the educational system and books as well, that’s the reason most of the kids don’t like reading books anymore, swimming where do they even go for swimming…. ummm let me guess tube wells that are not good for health and skin or at those swimming pools that aren’t cleaned for weeks, yeah play football outside in the pandemic, and where do they even play it? In streets breaking neighbors windows and other stuff. At least it’s better watching then 18+ stuff and news.

    • Jab banda 8 hours ki job kay baad ghar aata hej aur us kay paas 2 hours free hotay hein tou woh PUBG khelay, books read kray ya TV dekhnay us ka time hei, tu mama lagta hei IDIOT.

  • Pakistan has a long history of banning things. I understand that in the 90s they even banned VHS players. Then in the 2000s they banned blogspot, youtube and bitcoin. DTH services from india are technically banned although trade in them continues. Whenever there is a new technology that threatens to undermine the state’s control the kneejerk reaction of our political masters is to ban it.

  • Video games doesn’t CREATES violence it helps us to get rid of our depression and stress when you are too young to handle the stress of school and the depression of failure. In that case alot of people suicide but some do not for the sake of video games…games are the only positive activity that helps a kid to get rid of stress and depression so don’t call this a waste of time time and don’t judge a situation if you have never been in it
    #unbanpubg

  • Those who said pubg and other action games create violence I’m just gonna asked them i play fifa 18 as well so do i become messi or Ronaldo ?

  • This really is the first article that has discussed the basic issue. If PUBG or any game is enough to drive our children towards the extreme measures then we have failed to raise them properly or they are already suffering from something psychological issues. No one is talking about why 12 year olds are playing this game on their own phones without any supervision. And as far as wastage of time is concerned then my friend this is a form of entertainment and who are old PTA executives or lawmakers to judge someone for being entertained. This is a draconian way of handling issues and unfortunately it is how this country works

    • Man, I always used to think that I’m the only one talking sh about my country, and I got so much hate for this from the people who know me. I’m glad that I’m not seeing it the wrong way, nor was I ever in doubt anyway.
      This country is definitely beyond me. And unfortunately, I don’t see it changing ever.

  • I used to earn 1 lakh rupees from E-sports pubg challenges if I needed any thing my abroad sponsor used to pay for any thing and because of pubg ban no one ever invest money in Pakistan
    There are European agents in PTA who know that pakistany gaming community has a lot of potential
    Now they banned pubg tomorrow they will bann Google play and then the E commerce
    Idiots then all website designer and software engineers will be jobless
    Imran khan said that we will promote E-commerce we are waiting prime minister
    Take action now or never

  • I play FIFA. But I haven’t become Ronaldo
    I play cricket .I haven’t become David Warner. So if I play PUBG I will not become a murderer.
    So why have you banned it.
    It is the responsibility of parents to keep an eye on their children activities. A lot of YouTubers play PUBG and make money. It is good for Pakistan’s economy. Banning things is not solution.

    • Sarkar most of parents are not as tech savvy as yours. They dont understand this digital age. Heck they dont even know how their kids got ahold of gaming phones that cost 30k+
      Burger babus should stop weighing in on everything that affects the rich and the poor alike.

  • Just look at the history of Pakistan. The babus ban everything and then they realize that they have done wrong after many years. VoIP, DTH and VPN is even banned in Pakistan. We don’t have Paypal in Pakistan because of these same problems. Our Babus are Retired Generals with no access to new technologies. Pakistan will always remain regressive with this “ban anything that babus cannot understood” approach.

  • Pakistan! Think about improving your country and mindless people before you ban something just because some idiotic parents didnt have their eyes on their child!!

  • OK u have took the decision but the basis of suicides could be some other reasons not pubg at all and by banning u have destroyed the careers of young youtubers and streamers who were earning by posting their videos of their gaming and could become a famous youtubers in future. Hundreds of suicides are committed every year due to study failures so u will bann institutions u should think before taking any desision#unbannpubg

  • #continuebanonpubg
    I highly appreciate the step taken by PTA, to ban PUBG. The ban should continue for 2-3 years. It’s totally wastage of time. More and more innocent children are falling prey to this game. Those who are demanding to unban pubg are pubg addictive. I think the game should be banned all over the world. I’m not from Pakistan, I’m from indian illegally occupied kashmir. I love my Pakistan. So i want my Pakistani brothers safe!

    • I disagree with you bro. If it’s a waste of time, it’s not up to the government to take care of that. It’s down to the parents of the kids to make sure that they’re not wasting their time. It’s not my, or my fellow players’, or the game developers’ fault that someone in the deep unknown territory of a country failed to parent their child properly. The game is rated 16+ and so, it’s the parents’ place to be parents and be responsible for their children breaching the COPPA or some similar type of law that is enforced on the particular game.

      • If someone will open a bar or a borthel in your area that will also benefit dumb people like you, don’t blame the parents

  • Agar app ka bacha bahot ziyada pubg kelta hai tu ap usy net pakg kion karatey hu, pubg ban hony se wo koi aur game kele ga, aur yeh zimadari tu aap ka hai k bacha kia kr raha hai namaz parh raha hai ya nai, Quran parh raha hai, studies ko kitna time de raha hai. Aur kia mobile pe po*n tu nai dek raha hai, ghalt doston mai tu nai bet raha, bacha khud se kaha positive cheezen krega, pir jese ap ne tarbiyat kia hai wese hi ban jayega, masla ap k carelessness mai hai, nai tu addective wali chezen tu bahot si hai jese drugs, bike racing etc.., even k sirf bike racing ki waja se monthly 1 se 2 larky mar jaty hai yaha Quetta mai. Aur raha baqi healthy activities ka tu yaha Quetta mai sirf 2 se 3 grounds hai aur population 2.7 million hai tu baqi bachy kia Karen zahir hai koi activity tu chahiye time guzarnay k liye.

  • Arguments are kinda repeated ngl. The thing is, all the arguments can be marked down as valid concerns. Parents don’t want their children commiting suicide over a game. Others maybe have careers in esports or YouTube or twitch, or maybe hope for a career like that. My personal opinion is that PUBG should not be banned. The problem is the line between bad influence and bad parenting sorta blurred and now people can’t tell one from the other. Now those suicide cases. With regard to the parents loss, they should hv kept an eye on their offspring. Parents should try to restrict and yes idk parent their kids instead of outright banning it. However it’s their call since it’s their children and they should do what they think is best for them.

  • Just less than 5 months ago, Two kids also took their own lives after taking the matriculation exam of either Mathematics or Chemistry (I’m unsure). They never returned home after that exam and were found dead. Now obviously that has to do with the pressure that was put upon them from their parents and/or tutors that they couldn’t afford having a failed exam. Did anyone go as far to ban examination all around the country? Of course not, because we have our moronic views that gaming is completely useless and only studying and getting the degrees is the way to go about your future. This is what made those kids take their lives and even more kids are at serious risks.
    Banning the game doesn’t benefit anyone. There are always gonna be alternatives, and everyone would eventually stumble upon something else that will allegedly be “addictive”, “waste of time”, and it will as well “pose negative impact on psychological health of children”.
    The fault is not the kids’. It’s all due to bad parenting. Failing to build a good enough relation with their children and gaining their trust and letting them feel safe. There’s a fine line between providing the luxuries and giving the rights. Don’t overwhelm your children with interfering in their lives too much and don’t let them be too decisive on their own until they become adults. Find that right balance.

    I hope this ban gets uplifted because I’ve made numerous friends over this game, ones I could truly call my friends for the first time in my life. But now because of the ban, I can’t join them anymore and it sucks. But what does this population care about? Of course we only care about living in the 20th century.
    I couldn’t agree more with the article.

    • What confuses me is that, people acknowledge that others are making millions via video games but still look down at games.


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