Children and young people playing computer games need more meeting places where they can play together and be social, says a new report.
Several youth organizations are behind the report, which encourages municipalities to provide such meeting places, often where other activities for young people take place. Today, commercial forces are often behind meeting places for young people interested in games, says the report “Meeting Place Data Culture”.
“Many recreational clubs, organizations, and other local forces invest in premises and equipment so that young people interested in video games can meet to play together. However, there are still few meeting places in this area compared to other recreational activities in Norway, according to the report.
The National Association of Recreation Clubs and Youth Centers, Youth and Leisure, is behind the report, along with the Youth Cultural Association (UKM) and the two organizations KANDU and Tverga.
The organizations believe that local play services should be subsidized in the same way as sports fields and sports activities.
“It’s not just about gaming, it’s about producing and developing,” the report says.
The organizations have gathered information from young people about the kind of places they want. The “dream gathering place” should be a low-threshold, non-binding offer that is open after school, free, and has a meal service. There should also be an opportunity to do something physical there, such as trampoline rooms, skating rooms, or exercise facilities.
Technical and social adults
The staff on-site must understand the “technical” part and comprehend the different means, as well as being someone who cares, which the young people recommend.
They advise municipalities not to lean on their own ICT or purchasing department to provide the equipment needed. It is the young people who are specialists, they remind.
The report also recommends that municipalities work specifically to involve girls to use these meeting places, in which case they should be included in the planning of events and activities.
© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today