From Internet games centres towards e-community learning centres in Thailand

Jomphong Mongkhonvanit
Siam University
Bangkok, Thailand

As Internet game centres have spread and become popular across Thailand, there are concerns about inappropriate content and misuse by young adults and other at-risk groups. This study examines the status, problems, threats and suggestions for the development of Internet game centres in Thailand. Through surveys, in-depth interviews, public hearings and focus groups, this research recommends that the government should transform Internet game centres into electronic community learning centres that promote learning, skills and human development, specifically on the basis of morality and culture. This study also features a model of an e-community learning centre with standards, rules and community participation. The three areas focused on are the (1) place and location, (2) entrepreneurs/operators and (3) legal establishment and supporting policies. The transition of Internet game centres towards e-community learning centres will, however, require an emphasis on making learners eager to use them to develop their knowledge, capacities and skills, including physical, intellectual, societal and emotional facets. Accordingly, the arrangements in e-community learning centres’ should fulfil the needs of players/learners, while providing them with both education and entertainment.