The Korea Times, by way of Boing Boing, has an article about a company called Xtive that claims to have developed a system of subliminal audio cues designed to combat video game addiction. They claim that the messages are played 10,000 – 20,000 times per second, and that while gamers can not consciously hear the sounds, their subconscious can pick up, and be influenced enough to dissuade people from playing games. The eventual goal of the company is to have game developers integrate their system into gaming machines, to curb the rampant, deadly scourge of video game addiction.
Korea has, in recent years, had a spat of gaming related deaths, most related to people looking to escape reality by spending hours in Internet cafes, until they eventually die of a combination of exhaustion and ramen overdose.
Ignoring the mountains of evidence against the feasibility of subliminal stimuli, one still has to wonder why this company has such a hard-on for pushing people away from video games. Perhaps the CEO was molested by Sonic the Hedgehog, or maybe the President’s daughter was kidnapped by a gang of ninjas and no one was a bad enough dude to rescue her. Whatever the case, with products like this, Xtive has cemented their Christmas Party invite from the Thompson family.