Majority of the students that play games in computer shops and Internet cafes are minors, who have impressionable minds and have the tendency to become addicted and conduct gambling activities when left unsupervised.
To prevent such tendencies, Valenzuela City Congressman Win Gatchalian filed House Bill No. 4740 or the “Internet Café Regulation Act”, which seeks to ban those below 18 year old from entering computer shops during their school hours and between the period of 7 p.m. and 7 a.m.
Gatchalian also aims to discourage students from cutting classes and keep minors safe during night hours through his proposed measure.
For further clarifications, here are the most frequently asked questions or FAQs that you need to know about HB 4740:
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1) Does Valenzuela City Congressman Win Gatchalian’s HB 4740 seek to ban DotA and other computer games?
No, the bill only seeks to limit minors from entering computer shops during school hours and between 7 p.m. and 7 a.m.
2) Are there any games banned under HB 4740?
3) Under HB 4740, will minors be allowed to enter Internet cafes or computer shops?
Yes, minors will be allowed to enter computer shops or Internet cafes to play online games from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. They may also be allowed access to computers and Internet if students can prove they don’t have class schedules from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.
4) What if a minor needs to go to a computer shop due to certain academic needs, under what condition will he/she be allowed to go?
- Parent of legal guardians need to accompany the student. Otherwise, he/she should not be allowed to enter computer shops.
- He/she needs a written permit or clearance signed by parents or minor
5) Does HB 4740 seeks to ban or prohibit all individuals from going to computer shops and Internet cafes?
No, the bill will not ban all individuals in computer shops. It will only ban minors from going to computer shops during school hours and between the period of 7 p.m. and 7 a.m. unless a certain condition is met.
Related News: What is Internet Cafe Regulation Act?
6) What time will minors be limited from entering Internet shops?
During school hours and any time between 7 p.m. and 7 a.m.
7) Under HB 4740, will minors be banned in computer shops during weekends, holidays or vacation?
Minors are banned during weekends, holidays or vacation only between the period of 7 p.m. and 7 a.m.
8) Does HB 4740 seek to penalize minors that are caught playing during their restricted time period?
No, only computer shop and Internet cafe owners will be penalized.
9) What are the penalties of computer shops owners under this Act?
First offense – Fine of P50,000
Second offense – Fine of P100,000
Third offense – Fine of 150,000 and/or revocation of business permit and license and closure of establishments
10) What are the responsibilities of computer shop owners under the Internet Cafe Regulation Act?
- To post in a conspicuous area in his/her establishment a sign that indicates that no minors are allowed during school hours, and between 7 p.m. and 7 a.m.
- To be vigilant in inspecting the identification cards of their patrons.