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BBC 6 minute English-Is a game just a game

BBC 6 minute English-Is a game just a game

BBC 6 minute English-Is a game just a game


Transcript of the podcast

NB: This is not a word-for-word transcript

Rob: Hello and welcome to 6 Minute English. I’m Rob

Finn: …and I’m Finn. Hello

Rob: Hello, Finn. Did you have a good weekend

Finn: Yeah, it was OK thanks although, you know, I’m a bit tired now

Rob: Why’s that

Finn: It’s a bit embarrassing but I stayed up all night playing a computer game

Rob: All night?! You must be addicted. Addicted, by the way, means unable to stop doing something

Finn: Well, maybe today’s programme might have some advice for me

Rob: That’s right. Today we’re discussing whether computer games are bad for our health and in particular bad for children

Finn: OK, Rob, why don’t you wake me up a little bit by asking me today’s quiz question

Rob: OK – here goes. In America, what percentage of people who play computer games are female? Is it

a) 28%

b) 38%? or

c) 48%

Finn: Well, I do know a few female gamers so how about b) 38%

Rob: OK, right. Go for the middle option? We’ll find out if that’s the right answer later on. OK, so what kind of computer games do you like to play, Finn

Finn: Well, I quite like those role-playing games. You know, the fantasy role-playing games

Rob: OK, well, role playing is where you create your own characters and stories in a fantasy or imaginary world. But, to be honest, those kind of games aren’t really up my alley which means they’re not really suited to my tastes or abilities. Any other kind of games you like, Finn

Finn: Yeah, I also quite like shoot ’em-up games. These are games where you have to do a lot of shooting and there’s a lot of violence

Rob: It’s funny because you don’t strike me as a violent person, Finn

Finn: I’m not, at all. I wouldn’t hurt a fly, Rob! But maybe shooting people on a computer screen seems a bit more harmless

Rob: OK. And not to hurt a fly means to be gentle and unwilling to make people unhappy. And harmless means unlikely to hurt or upset anyone. Well, let’s hear Internet safety advisor Alan MacKenzie discussing how adult computer games can have a negative effect on children

Alan MacKenzie, Internet safety advisor

Many people understandably will just think that a game is just a game and not realising the explicit content that’s in there – and as you suggest, the violence and sexualisation of women in particular, which is highly inappropriate for anybody, never mind children

Finn: Well, you know, if you want my opinion, Rob, a game is just a game. It’s generally a harmless form of entertainment. What do you think

Rob: I’m torn, actually meaning I’m unable to decide. Most people, like you Finn, probably aren’t affected by what you see in computer games. But we can’t ignore the small percentage of people who are affected

Finn: Well, that’s true really, isn’t it, Rob? And whilst playing computer games all night doesn’t make me violent, it certainly makes me very tired

Rob: I can see that. But also Finn – when do you and your wife actually talk to each other when you’re in your own computer fantasy world for hours on end

Finn: Yeah, it’s not great, is it? And for hours on end means a long time, by the way! So, I don’t know. Maybe if she played as well, then we could have some virtual conversations

Rob: Well, that sounds ridiculous! But let’s move on, Alan talks about explicit content in games. What does that mean

Finn: That means showing things in an open and direct way. So some adult games contain open violence and sexualisation

Rob: And shall we explain what sexualisation means

Finn: Yes. It means making someone or something sexual and in this case, women. This might be through the shape of a woman’s body, or the clothes she wears, or the way she behaves in these games

Rob: Alan says this type of explicit content – violent or sexual is inappropriate for computer games. And inappropriate means not the right thing for a particular situation

Finn: And he is worried about children accessing this type of content. Let’s hear more from him. What advice does he give

Alan MacKenzie, Internet safety advisor

So it’s a matter of educating the parents and the wider community in these issues, and making them aware of the type of content that’s in there, and why it’s inappropriate, and the effects that it may be having on their children and their behaviour

Finn: Alan thinks it’s the responsibility of parents and the wider community – now that means other groups of people, such as friends, relatives and teachers for example – to check on what children are viewing and playing

Rob: But this will only work if they understand which types of content are OK and which aren’t

Finn: That’s right. So the adults need educating too. They need to be shown

Rob: Yes, that’s right. So I’ll be checking on your behaviour from now on, Finn

Finn: OK, That’s probably a good idea. So, let’s hear the answer to today’s quiz question next

Rob: Yes and I asked you, in America, what percentage of people who play computer games are female? Is it

a) 28%

b) 38% or

c) 48%

Finn: And I went for the middle option, as usual, and I said b) 38%

Rob: And you are wrong, this time Finn! The answer is actually c) 48%. Are you surprised by that

Finn: Yes and no. I think a lot more people are playing games in general, so lots of them must be women

Rob: Absolutely. Why not? OK, shall we now listen to the words we learned today

Finn: Good idea. We heard

addicted fantasy up your alley shoot’em up not to hurt a fly harmless for hours on end explicit content sexualisation inappropriate wider community

Rob: Thank you. Well, that brings us to the end of today’s 6 Minute English. We hope you enjoyed today’s programme. You can hear other 6 Minute English programmes at bbclearningenglish.com. Please join us again soon

Both: Bye

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