So, How Many Video Games Can I Get For This Baby?

Chinese couple A Hui and A Mei have been arrested after selling both of their children to human traffickers to feed their "freemium" game addiction.

Chinese couple A Hui and A Mei bonded over their love of online “freemium” games and would spend all night in internet cafes. Eventually they welcomed their first child, a baby boy.  But having a child didn’t stop them from playing their games and purchasing in-game upgrades and soon after his birth they realized that they couldn’t afford to take care of the child and continue to play their games, so they did the only sensible thing that they could think of– they sold their child.

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No, I did not mean they put their baby up for adoption.  I mean they sold him to human traffickers for about 20,000 Chinese yuan, or about $3,225. For extra gems and weapons…

Aw man, I could buy like 650 of these with my baby!

Soon after they became pregnant again and faced the same dilemma– do we support our child, or our gaming? So after the child, another baby boy, was born they sold him again to traffickers.

A Hui’s father realized what was happening–most likely when his grandchildren started disappearing–and alerted the authorities.  The couple is currently behind bars awaiting trial.

From behind bars A Mei told reporters that her boyfried A Hui  “likes buying items in online games, and he likes staying out all night at internet cafes”

As upsetting as this is–so upsetting that there is a petition around the internet to denounce the two for their acts– this is not the first time something like this has happened. In 2011, Chinese couple Li Lin and Li Juan sold all three of their children to human traffickers.  In 2009 the two had a daughter, their second child, and decided to try and sell her, receiving about $500 for her.  They later sold both of their sons for about $4600.  When they were arrested after their mother notified the authorities, they claimed that they didn’t realize that it was illegal to sell their children and that they “don’t want to raise them, (they) just want to sell them for some money.”

This incident with A Hui and A Mei comes after the 14-year ban on video game consoles was finally lifted at the beginning of the year, but perhaps there needs to be a greater restriction on what happens at internet cafes all together.

And perhaps some people just should just be more careful so that they don’t have children all together. 


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Krystina Butler
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