Hell, that’s not even the word. I can’t use the word I really want to use to describe the incident in which two brainless twits reproduced and then left their helpless children to fend for themselves while they got lost in in an online fantasy game for a few hundred hours. Because you see, this is generally a work-safe site … and the thoughts this bring to mind are definitely not work safe.
I should note, for those who are about to use this as evidence of the corrupting power of games and/or Dungeons & Dragons (these fools were playing the online version of the venerable role-playing game) that plenty of people have performed similar acts of depraved indifference without a single gaming console or computer around. Also, there are millions of geek moms and dads who game every day and still manage to make sure their kids are loved and cared for.
But back to my original point. Addiction is a word that gets thrown around a lot these days — cell phones, video games, the internet, you name it, someone’s “addicted” to it. I’m not a psychiatrist, I can’t say whether these two freaks were “addicted”. I’m also willing to bet that dollars to donuts, there was a hell of a lot more going on here than just video games. But even if they were in the thralls of the D&D Online’s digital spell, I have to believe that they had a choice.
It may end up buried at the bottom of a deep and twisted compulsion … but you make a choice to not feed your kids. You make a choice to leave them dying in fetid squalor while you game … and saying that an “addiction” to video games made you do it (or others describing your actions as such) is simply a cop out.