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Teen Killed At Chinese Internet Addiction Camp 334

Posted by Soulskill
from the symptomatic-overreactions dept.
eldavojohn writes "Sixteen-year-old Deng Senshan was tragically beaten to death by three of his instructors in an internet addiction camp in the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region of China. Reportedly it was for not being able to run fast enough. An article in the Wall Street Journal says that, 'China's netizens have played a key role in drawing nationwide attention to recent cases of deaths in prisons and detention centers, so it should be no surprise that they are up in arms over the fate of one of their own. Many questioned the fairly new diagnosis of "Internet addiction" as a mental disorder.' You may recall electroshock treatment being banned from use on internet addicts in China. According to Xinhua, more than 100 juveniles remain in 'treatment' at the camp, which has stayed open. Perhaps for Senshan it would have been better to let him endure his cruel affliction instead of having his parents pay over $1,000 to have him beaten to death?"
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Teen Killed At Chinese Internet Addiction Camp

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  • by Mr. Underbridge (666784) on Wednesday August 05, 2009 @09:24AM (#28957083)

    Perhaps for Senshan it would have been better to let him endure his cruel affliction instead of having his parents pay over $1,000 to have him beaten to death?

    And knowing China, they probably also charged his parents for the cost of the stick used to beat him.

    Also, I don't know much about these "internet addiction" facilities. Are we talking about people who spend too much time playing WoW, or dissidents who use the internet for communication? Somehow I'm seeing this as being a gulag for political prisoners, but maybe that's just me being cynical.

  • by ausekilis (1513635) on Wednesday August 05, 2009 @09:35AM (#28957311)
    What is truly remarkable about this particular story is they say their son started this training Saturday, and was declared dead on Sunday (3 am was it?). Even worse, the mission statement said their methods were "harsh, but no harm will be done", yet the body was bloody and showed signs of restraint and struggle (handcuff bruising on his wrists).

    The poor kid didn't even make it one day, yet the camp took a stand much like the Chinese government, denying that anything happened and that the kid had a fever. Apparently in China fevers involve a bruised/bloodied face and handcuffs. China has had attention called to it's human rights violations before, now that we are seeing the murder of a child that didn't do anything wrong in worldwide news, maybe we'll start seeing global pressure on China to change their ways a bit.
  • by icegreentea (974342) on Wednesday August 05, 2009 @09:40AM (#28957389)
    Maybe there are some camps that are gulags. But I think the majority of the cases are 'legit'. My family is Chinese (from Taiwan, pretty much same culture) and we live in Canada, so I got a relatively watered down version of the 'Asian/Chinese Parents' thing. And I can really see parents sending off their kids for spending too much time playing video games. Among my circle of friends, I know a lot of kids who just utterly fucked up school from gaming too much (this is before alcohol and drugs... and forget about girls), and I know a lot of their parents would try to do more. But really, a motivated teenager is going to somehow get around nearly everything their parents will try. I remember when my parents locked up the TV behind a cabinet so my brother and I would spend less time watching TV/playing SNES (yeah, that was a while ago). We just took the cabinet doors off its hinges whenever they were gone (even the best parents can't be there all the time).

    So, given conditions in China (those parents are bound to be away working more than the typical parents here), as well as how addicting those games really are, and that Chinese parents generally really do want their kids to 'succeed', I really can see parents sending kids off to Internet (or Gaming) addiction camp. I mean hell, we have Fat Camps in North America to deal with our problem with obese kids, they have Internet Addiction Camps to deal with their problem with kids gaming way too much. This is no excuse for abuse and killing the poor kid. That shit's fucking horrible. Fuckers should be put in jail. And I think they will be. China might be a totalitarian government, but they still have to pretend to care.
  • Re:Upshot (Score:3, Interesting)

    by MightyYar (622222) on Wednesday August 05, 2009 @09:53AM (#28957639)

    Yeah, that sounds exactly the same as killing someone.

    In New York City, you can get an airline/bus/train ticket out of town if you are homeless, so long as there is something awaiting you at the destination. This seems like common sense to me... send people back to where their support structure is. Even the most fucked up people usually have SOMEONE who still cares about them.

  • Re:for what? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by A. B3ttik (1344591) on Wednesday August 05, 2009 @09:55AM (#28957689)

    I wonder what the trade deficit would be if they actually respected our intellectual property and paid the going rate for it instead of stealing it?

    Good point. It's also ironic since most of /. would have you believe that piracy isn't stealing, and yet their own lives might be noticeably better if stated countries paid for, instead of pirated, American software.

    Think about what the economy would look like!

  • by Belegothmog (712435) on Wednesday August 05, 2009 @10:27AM (#28958253)

    China has had attention called to it's human rights violations before, now that we are seeing the murder of a child that didn't do anything wrong in worldwide news, maybe we'll start seeing global pressure on China to change their ways a bit.

    Dear China,

    Please stop killing the internet addicts. We really need the money that you're loaning to us to finance our bailout and people may become a little uncomfortable if they ever link our financial system with murder in their little heads. While the chances of this are remote, and the chances of them actually boycotting Chinese made goods even less, it would still make our lives and our re-elections campaigns much easier if you could stop, or at least cover up better, these little murders.

    Thank you for your time and money,
    The U.S. Government

  • Not just China (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Psyborgue (699890) on Wednesday August 05, 2009 @10:27AM (#28958265) Homepage Journal
    This sort of thing happens all the time in the states. Google "Aaron Bacon" and he's hardly the only one. US boot camps have a really bad history in this area only nobody seems to care very much since they kids were somehow "troubled" (allegedly, since there is no due process).
  • by steelfood (895457) on Wednesday August 05, 2009 @11:11AM (#28958891)

    China might be a totalitarian government, but they still have to pretend to care.

    No, they have to care. Otherwise, there'll be unrest all over, and the minority groups like the Uyghurs and Tibetans will take advantage of the situation to cause more problems. Local governments aren't necessarily subject to the same restrictions as the central government, but if things start getting too ridiculous, the low-level politicans in charge will pay.

  • Doncha think? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Tetsujin (103070) on Wednesday August 05, 2009 @11:15AM (#28958971) Homepage Journal

    I wonder what the trade deficit would be if they actually respected our intellectual property and paid the going rate for it instead of stealing it?

    Good point. It's also ironic since most of /. would have you believe that piracy isn't stealing, and yet their own lives might be noticeably better if stated countries paid for, instead of pirated, American software.

    Ironic? I don't know if that's the right word for it. That is nothing like rain on your wedding day, for instance.

    I mean, look - yes, some people take that stance, that software piracy isn't "stealing". That point alone is just splitting hairs over terminology. The choice of words there is designed to make people sympathize with the copyright holders, and I think people don't always appreciate that sort of spin.

    And then also consider - when we have a stance on what we consider right and wrong, in principle that should not be governed by what is best for ourselves, personally. This is why I don't see this situation as "ironic". If a specific person said both that they think copyright infringement is okay and that China's copyright infringement is bad, that would be hypocritical... But if someone believes copyright infringement is okay and doesn't care about China's copyright infringement or the economic consequences thereof, that's consistent. They've taken their stance and stuck to it.

  • by Psyborgue (699890) on Wednesday August 05, 2009 @11:39AM (#28959347) Homepage Journal
    Of all tyrannies a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baronâ(TM)s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience. They may be more likely to go to Heaven yet at the same time likelier to make a Hell of earth. Their very kindness stings with intolerable insult. To be âcuredâ(TM) against oneâ(TM)s will and cured of states which we may not regard as disease is to be put on a level with those who have not yet reached the age of reason or those who never will; to be classed with infants, imbeciles, and domestic animals. - C.S Lewis - the Humanitarian Theory of Punishment
  • Re:Not just China (Score:4, Interesting)

    by 7 digits (986730) on Wednesday August 05, 2009 @04:52PM (#28963935)

    What is amazing, is that the guy that started all this continues, and that nobody really care.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2001/08/09/us/boot-camps-proponent-becomes-focus-of-critics.html?pagewanted=all [nytimes.com]

    I'd be the parent of one of the dead kids, I'd lodge a bullet into that asshole's head, whatever the cost would be.

    (flame)
    Of course, customers of those camps are religious families, so they mostly sit there, whining about the loss, but still thanking god for His Impenetrable Ways. Morons. Ooops. Sorry.
    (/flame)

  • Re:Not just China (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Psyborgue (699890) on Wednesday August 05, 2009 @07:55PM (#28966157) Homepage Journal

    If you're referring to Cartesano, he didn't start it (though he did help popularize so-called "wilderness" therapy). The whole industry (wider spectrum including actual boot camps, RTCs, etc...) started in Southern California from a little cult known as Synanon [culthelp.info] which was based on AA. Most of the parents aren't religious either and this is hardly a religious issue at all. The parents are conned and scared; told that their kids will be dead insane or in jail without the program. When people are desperate and scared they choose desperate solution's. Customers of these places are spread across a wide political and religious spectrum. Most parents simply could not imagine such things can happen in the united states. If anything the left-leaning parents just as easy to con since they believe the allmighty state will protect their kids. When a program says they're "licensed", parents figure that means it's safe. Well. Aaron Bacon died in a licensed program as have so many other kids. None of it matters much if the programs are as good at fooling the rare inspections as they are with parents on a regular basis. Providing a false front is something that cults and cult-like groups are very adept at. Frankly, I don't believe regulation will ever be enough because no matter what, these groups will always be one step ahead. A while back I interviewed an ex-employee of a Utah program who told me they actually had drills to prepare for unexpected arrival of inspectors.

    I'd be the parent of one of the dead kids, I'd lodge a bullet into that asshole's head, whatever the cost would be.

    Frankly, I'm surprised it hasn't happened yet.

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