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Parents Starve Baby as They Nurture Virtual Child

Anyone who doubts the Internet’s addictive potential need only look at this sad case of child neglect. A husband and wife have been caught and arrested after their 3-month-old daughter died of severe dehydration and malnutrition. The couple had been on the run for five months. Police say the couples’ addiction to online gaming led them to spend all their time at an Internet café, only coming home once a day to feed their child.

The unemployed South Korean couple was engrossed with an online game called Prius Online in which players can engage in commonplace real world activities such as choosing a job and raising a family. Together they “raised” a child in the game they named “Anima.” Meanwhile in real life, their prematurely born baby was dying.

“They indulged themselves in the online game of raising a virtual character so as to escape from reality, which led to the death of their real baby,” police officer Chung Jin-Won said.

Internet addiction is a very real problem in South Korea. Recently a 24-year-old man collapsed and died after playing an online game for 86 hours straight. Another S. Korean man fell to a similar fate after playing Starcraft for 50 consecutive hours.

The parents have been charged with child abuse and neglect.

Source: AOL News

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