Last week, Jordan's Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (TRC) blocked the online multiplayer battle royale PlayerUnknown's BattleGround (PUBG).
TRC officials cited the "negative social effects" of the game as one of the reasons behind their decision to ban it. In a statement to Jordan Times, officials at the government body explained that the move came in line with the "commission's duty to protect users as well as with the Telecommunications Law, alleging that the game has been proven to 'promote violence, isolation, and self-centeredness.'"
The official ban comes months after the commission issued a warning about the negative psychological effects of PUBG in December. In a statement posted on their official Twitter page, TRC said they had also received many complaints about the game over the past few months.
To say news of the ban left Jordanians divided would be an understatement because it seems no one could see eye to eye with the ban.
Speaking to StepFeed, 30-year-old Ahmed said he was completely opposed to the ban.
"Why do they feel the need to regulate our lives? I play the game and will continue to do so no matter what. It should be up to us to decide whether to play an online game or not," he said.
Salma, a mother of two, said she felt the decision to ban PUBG was an extreme measure.
"The game features an age restriction and if underage teens are found playing it, it's their parents who should be monitoring that, not the government. Banning adults from accessing PUBG is an extreme move that is so uncalled for, they should be able to decide what they want," she explained.
The debate over the ban is ongoing both online and off
However, not everyone was upset over the news of the ban. Imad, a 40-year-old father of three, said he's thrilled with the news.
"It's an addictive game that can be dangerous for our youth so why allow them to play it? In Jordan, it isn't only adults who were doing that, kids, even my own 10-year-old accessed PUBG and played it in secret. It's a great thing that they can't easily access it now," he said.
Imad added that he doesn't believe the banning of similar games goes against people's personal freedoms.
Online, the ban sparked a controversy that has yet to quiet down with hundreds debating it via a viral hashtag.
The news wasn't accepted by many
"I imagine the high unemployment rates and the rise of living costs are more damaging to our health than a game most people play to forget the misery we're living in."
Because why not let people decide things for themselves?
"Honestly, I don't understand why PUBG was banned in Jordan. I don't know until when our Arab governments will continue to blame games for all the problems taking place in our countries. They're forgetting that the problem is the way people are being brought up at home and in our societies."
Some vented through memes
Which were pretty defiant
"Everyone after Jordan banned PUBG"
PUBG is a major hit in the Arab world
However, experts have warned of the dangers of PUBG, among other addicting video games. Subsequently, the World Health Organization (WHO) added gaming disorder to the addictive disorders section in June last year.
In November 2018, Egyptian lawmakers announced they were considering a ban on the video game for inciting violence, but the ban has not been enforced.