Hold on to your butts, The Sun is up to some shenanigans again.
When it comes to adding topless women to UK newstastic for no damn reason, nobody does it better. These guys brought the world the illustrious Page 3, like the no-effs-given ogling badasses they are, and we love them for it. So don’t get the mistaken impression that there’s piss-takery of any sort going on right here.
Even so, their reputation for sensationalism and/or rabid BS is legendary. Remember the headline Freddie Starr Ate My Hamster? No, no he didn’t, and that’s the whole reason we have trust issues. So what the hell can we expect from their recent feature GAMING: MORE ADDICTIVE THAN HEROIN?
Wait, scratch that. It wasn’t phrased as a question. It was more of a Gaming is More Addictive Than Heroin, Mothereffers. Soon You’ll be Giving Great Wads of Your Cash to Shady Dudes in ‘Da Hood’ to Feed Your Filthy Habit. Do You Want Grandma and Great Uncle Sebastian to Have to Come Over and Have an Intervention? DO YOU?
But, y’know, you’ve got to keep your headlines short and snappy.
Anywho, there were melodramatic blurbs such as ‘Call of Duty link to three suicides.’ There was a fancy little quiz in the corner, Are YOU addicted? They had bullet points and everything. These dudes meant business. They were dropping ACTUAL SCIENCE like a ton of goddamn bricks.
Except they weren’t. Even a little bit. As Kotaku reports, The Sun were mostly shoveling something else. An actual science-y scientist, who presumably knows his shit science-wise, was drafted in for the tabloid’s study. Dr Mark Griffiths, head of a Gaming Research Unit at Nottingham Trent University, later stated:
“The little thing I did for The Sun is actually based on real criteria I use in my research. The number of people who would score seven out of 10 of those items I put in The Sun today, I'd find it very hard to believe there would be more than a handful of people out there. You'd probably get a lot of people who might endorse three or four of them, but that doesn't mean they're addicted.”
Of the melodramatic headline itself, Griffiths said, "It depends how you define addiction in the first place. All in all, this is some serious bollocks they’re talking right here.”
Except he only said that first part.