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English playwright Lucy Prebble has caused controversy not with a play, but with a newspaper article preaching the virtues of playing computer games. She draws on her own family history—her father was an IT programmer and family man—to say that gaming brings families together. “Rather than being vilified, video games should be recognized as an art form appreciated for the way they tugged at our emotions and stimulated creativity, Prebble said.” She compares gaming to writing, which requires more active input than reading.
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Not surprisingly, literacy advocates have taken exception to Prebble’s claims, as would many parents who have seen video games distract from homework. “Research shows reading frequency has a direct link to attainment, as eight in 10 children who read over 10 books a month are above average readers compared with just three in 10 of those who rarely read,” said spokeswoman for England’s National Literacy Trust. Prebble has also pointed out that new video games systems, such as Wii, encourage physical activity as well.
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