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eSports – legitimate sport or teenage addiction problem?

The Thaiger & The Nation

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eSports – legitimate sport or teenage addiction problem? | The Thaiger

PHOTO: China Daily

The Thai Mental health department is urging the government to rethink any decision to recognise online gaming.

Moves to officially recognise eSports (electronic gaming sports) could lead to children becoming addicted to online games, according to health experts. A Mental Health Department adviser Dr Yongyud Wongpiromsarn says the promotion of eSports would likely do more harm than good.

“We have already established a panel to raise this issue at the National Health Assembly forum later this year,” he said.

Yongyud hoped that relevant authorities, including political office holders, would review the Sports Authority of Thailand’s decision in 2017 to recognise eSports as a form of sport.

“We are worried that in the end more Thai children will become addicted to games.”

He says most countries in the world had not treated online games as sports and pointed out that although eSports made a presence at the 2018 Asian Games, it was there just as a demonstration game.

A study in the US revealed recently that just one in 1 million online-gamers could become a professional in the field, he said.

“Dozens of thousands, meanwhile, have become game addicts.”

In Thailand, the Institute of Child and Adolescent Mental Health reported that as many as 60 children had sought treatments for game addiction in recent months.

“The number of game addicts has risen by one-fold since eSports has become recognised as a form of sport,” Yongyud said.

He said his concern was shared by people working for the protection of children. Some entrepreneurs promoted eSports by claiming that players’ skills could build a future career, and some even offered to host eSports competitions for schools.

“In France, students can’t even play with cellphones in school compounds,” Yongyud said. In Thailand, at least eight universities offer courses related to eSports.

Teerarat Pantawee, who heads the National Health Assembly’s panel on children and media, told a recent forum that eSports had grown in popularity partly because there were many official eSports contests and promotions.

“Thailand’s eSports industry is now worth more than 10 billion baht. It has also been growing at the rate of 12 per cent per annum,” she said.

STORY: The Nation



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Thailand

Thai Cabinet extends waiver of Visa On Arrival fees

The Thaiger & The Nation

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Thai Cabinet extends waiver of Visa On Arrival fees | The Thaiger

Thailand’s Cabinet has extended the waiver of the fees for ‘visa on arrival’ for some foreign tourists to Thailand. The waiver of the 2,000 baht VOA fee will be extended to at least October 31.

The fee had previously been waived until January 14 this year in a bid to boost tourism. It was then extended until April 30 and has now been extended again. According to the Ministry of Sports and Tourism, waiving the VOA fee had helped support the increase of foreign visitor numbers.

Between November 15, 2018 to March 31, 2019, 3.58 million foreigners visited Thailand, an increase of 83% compared to the 1.6 million visitors during the same period in the previous year.

Meanwhile, waiving the VOA fee resulted in the government losing 2.95 billion baht in revenue but the extra tourists generated an estimated 105 billion baht in tourism revenue.

The Visa On Arrival waiver is available to tourists from 21 countries and regions, including China and India.

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Bangkok

Bangkok home prices among the cheapest in the Key Global Cities report

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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Bangkok home prices among the cheapest in the Key Global Cities report | The Thaiger

Hong Kong maintains its position as the world’s most expensive residential city, while Bangkok ranks at #33 out of 35 global cities surveyed.

In the fifth annual Global Living Report, CBRE profiles the property markets across 35 key global cities. The results highlight that investments in urban areas such as transport infrastructure, connectivity, retail, cultural centres and housing are key drivers of economic growth.

“In the fifth edition of the ‘Global Living’ report, we have expanded the number of cities we examine from 29 to 35. They include the most exciting cities in the world, from emerging technology-driven powerhouses like Shenzhen and Bangkok through more traditional capital cities such as Rome and Lisbon, to rapidly evolving modern urban centres like Dubai and Johannesburg,” according to Jennet Siebrits, Head of Residential Research at CBRE UK.

Bangkok home prices among the cheapest in the Key Global Cities report | News by The Thaiger

The top three most expensive places to buy a residential property are all in Asia. Hong Kong remains the city with the highest value residential real estate, with an average property costing 39.52 million baht (USD 1.235 million), Singapore in second place, averaging 27.97 million baht (USD 874,372), and Shanghai third at 27.92 million baht (USD 872,555).

Bangkok stands at #33 position with an average residential property price of 3.4 million baht (USD 106,383), followed by Ho Chi Min City at 3.29 million baht (USD 103,057) and Istanbul at the bottom with average prices of 3.11 million baht (USD 97,396) amongst the 35 surveyed world cities.

The biggest year-on-year growth was experienced in double-digits by Barcelona (16.9%), Dublin (11.6%), Shanghai (11.2%) and Madrid (10.2%). London remains one of the top ten performing global cities, with the average property price of 20.7 million baht (USD 646,973) although growth was down by 1.1%.

You can read the full report HERE.

Find the largest list of Bangkok city properties for sale HERE.

Bangkok home prices among the cheapest in the Key Global Cities report | News by The Thaiger

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Phuket

Top 10 ways to save water at home

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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Top 10 ways to save water at home | The Thaiger

Hot weather and Thailand’s boom-or-bust water issues (floods in wet season and water shortages in the hot season) are a part of our life. And it’s predicted that there will be hotter hot seasons and wetter wet-seasons in the future. Even if we’re not sure what the future brings we should all be conscious of our water usage, be more self-sufficient and empower ourselves to do something positive to protect Thailand’s precious water reserves.

Here are a few ideas that may help you become more water-wise…

• Shower with a bucket. Don’t let all that water pour down the drain and stick a bucket next to you whilst you shower. The plants will be grateful for an extra drink on hot days and save you using the hose sometimes. Whilst you’re at it, cut your 5 minute shower down to three minutes. Really, you can sing somewhere else! And, really, do we absolutely have to have four showers a day? No. A fresh spray of the deodorant and a fresh shirt will be perfectly OK during water shortages. For couples, well, shower together!

• Leave the water running whilst brushing your teeth? Try turning it off until you want to rinse out your mouth. All that useable water flowing down the basic drain whilst you’re brushing isn’t making your teeth any whiter! Same when you’re washing your hands or washing your hair. Turn off the tap whilst you’re doing all the scrubbing. These little habits could end up saving tens of litres every time you do these common tasks.

Top 10 ways to save water at home | News by The Thaiger

• Boiling pasta? Rice? Eggs? Once the left-over water has cooled use it to water your indoor or outdoor plants. Just make sure the water has cooled first!

• Washing the car at a car wash is more efficient than doing it yourself at home. Car wash businesses recycle a lot of their water. Even better, drive around with a dirty car now and then – it’s not hurting you or the car and will save water by delaying your car wash.

Top 10 ways to save water at home | News by The Thaiger

• Lawns use lots of water and daily watering during the hot season can soak up hundreds of litres of valuable. Letting your lawn go brown, be assured it will come back in the wet season. And long-term, landscape accordingly with water wise ground covers, succulents, and other plants that thrive in drought conditions. Lawns may be a luxury we can’t afford in these water-conscious times.

• Only run the dishwasher when it’s full. Even better wash the dishes by hand. Dishwashing machines are notable water wasters. Grab you partner or a friend and have a chat or a laugh for the five minutes it will take you to wash the dishes by hand. You could save up to 50-100 litres of water! And fill up the sink once and do all the washing together without leaving the water running all the time.

Top 10 ways to save water at home | News by The Thaiger

• Whilst it hasn’t been a worry in the past, our useable potable water supplies around Thailand are becoming an issue that won’t be fixed immediately. Consider installing a simple rain catchment system. They can be cheap or expensive and should be considered if you’re building a new house as an integral part of the design. Your roof is an amazing water-catcher. Use it.

• Flush the toilet less often and with less water. Most modern toilets have a half-flush option and there are other tricks to reducing the re-fill in your toilet’s cistern – putting a brick into your cistern is one way (gently!).

• Water the plants early in the morning. You’ll need less water, since cooler morning temperatures mean less evaporation. It’s not a great idea to water in the evenings, since this can promote mould growth in the humid Thai weather and hot evenings. And you really don’t need to water the driveway. It’s not growing. No one is going to walk past your house and compliment you on your sparkling clean drive-way.

• The dog WILL survive without being washed every day, or week. Indeed our dogs used to survive perfectly well without being washed at all. If the family pooch does need a wash try and use some of the water you saved from the bucket in the shower and be careful not to leave the hose on whilst rubbing in the shampoo. As for the cat, it is genetically programmed to clean itself better than you could ever hope to. Leave the cat alone – it DOES NOT need to be washed.

Top 10 ways to save water at home | News by The Thaiger

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