According to the Daily Mail, UK Divorce company Divorce Online has seen a spike in separations attributed to MMOs since its last investigation of the phenomenon. Previously, the company reported that 5% of divorces predicated on "unreasonable behaviour" were related to a partner being too absorbed in video games; now, they are reporting that in their most current study that number tripled to 15%. Apparently World of Warcraft and Call of Duty are singled out as culprits in many of these divorces.
Meanwhile, Eurogamer provides a fantastic and much more in-depth follow up to the Daily Mail article. Digging deeper, Eurogamer found that for each divorce in which gaming was mentioned as a factor, other factors were also cited as grounds for the split - a fact that throws water on the idea that gaming is the sole, or even primary cause for divorce in these cases. There's much more to their dissection of the issue, but rather than regurgitating it I'll suggest you click on over.
While the initial reaction by this writer and video game fanatic was skepticism (this isn't scholarly research, there's a sampling bias inherent to the users of this "divorce service" website, research sponsored by those with a financial interest has to be held to extra scrutiny, the Daily Mail article quotes an unnamed and unreferenced "expert" who claims "that World of Warcraft is more addictive than cocaine" and then trots out a therapist who tries to link gaming to addiction theory), not only am I aware of examples of relationships that broke up or almost broke up in which MMO playing was a significant issue (or perhaps a symptom of an underlying problem?), but I've also heard grumbling about people losing their significant others to "addictive" games in forums and on websites both game-related and not all over the internet (to wit: WOW widows, and numerous groups on facebook). While anecdotes and reports from businesses don't add up to scholarly research, these are the places where it often comes from. Perhaps it's time?