Popular Web Game Worries Some

It's like playing house, but online. And thousands of children in the United States are logged in.  But it may affect the way they interact with others in the long run.

They're called Webkinz and the way they work is you buy the stuffed animal for 15 dollars and it comes with a login name and one thousand dollars in pretend money.

Your child then logs on to the website and uses the money to do everyday things like take the animal to the dentist, to the doctor, and go to the grocery store.

But there is a catch, your child also has to earn pretend money.

Parents like it because they say it teaches their children how to be responsible. But others say too much time on the web, regardless of the content or activity, can affect brain development.

Counselors say too much time online hinders brain chemistry and can disrupt a child's sleep pattern. And they say interacting with others online is no substitute for interacting with real people.