Boys' and girls' academic performance began to diverge 15 years ago and has accelerated in the past decade. Boys, who traditionally were far better in mathematics, have declined to now be at parity with girls on national tests.
This decline in boys' scores coincides with the emergence of video games.
Developmental psychologist Douglas Gentile published a survey of American 8- to 18-year-olds last year and found that 12 percent of boys were video-game-addicted, having at least six symptoms out of 11 - similar to a scale for gambling addiction. Only 3 percent of girls were video-game addicts.