Feeds

China halts memory-wiping electric shocks for net addicts

Buzz off and forget it

The Power of One Brief: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

The Chinese government has declared that electric shock treatment is not a suitable therapy for youths allegedly addicted to the internet.

China has been grappling with the scourge of internet addiction in recent years, with youths keeling over in internet cafes due to excessive gameplay, or killing each other over virtual world slights that have spilled into the real world and suchlike.

Perhaps inevitably, some of the solutions have appeared either harsh or bizarre to western sensibilities, not least the therapies dished out by one Doctor Yang Yongxin in Shandong province.

"Uncle Yang" as he's known has apparently been happily prescribing a combination of electro-shock courses alongside psychotropic drugs and boot camp type exercises to his young charges, and charging their parents $805 a month, Reuters reports.

But the country's Ministry of Health has come down hard on Yang, declaring that "Electroshock therapy for Internet addiction... has no foundation in clinical research or evidence and therefore is not appropriate for clinical application".

Quite apart from the rather fluid definition of what constitutes "internet addiction", electro-shock treatment - or electro-convulsive therapy (ECT) - is usually seen as something of a last resort treatment for major, deep depression. In the West it is carried out in highly controlled circumstances, not least because it is linked to short term memory loss.

Reuters doesn't note the details of Uncle Yang's treatment regime. However, it does note that, according to the ministry of health, neither Yang or his colleagues are qualified psychotherapists.

Yang won't be the only one looking to reassess his treatment offerings. Beijing's's Military General Hospital included mild shock treatment as part of its own net detox programme when it launched last year. ®

Seven Steps to Software Security

More from The Register

next story
NSA man: 'Tell me about your Turkish connections'
Spooks ask Dabbsy to suggest a nice hotel with pool
Carlos: Slim your working week to just three days of toil
'Midas World' vision suggests you retire later, watch more tellie and buy more stuff
Motorist 'thought car had caught fire' as Adele track came on stereo
'FIRE' caption on dashboard prompts dunderheaded hard shoulder halt
Yahoo! Japan! launches! service! for! the! dead!
If you're reading this email, I am no longer alive
Plucky Rockall podule man back on (proper) dry land
Bold, barmy Brit adventurer Nick Hancock escapes North Atlantic islet
Russia sends SEX-CRAZED GECKOS to SPAAAAACE!
In space... no one can hear you're green...
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.