Violence in video games

This article talks about violence in video games.. it has to do with a lot of what we are talking about in class. let me know what you think.

http://serendip.brynmawr.edu/exchange/node/1723

Violence In Video Games

These two videos talk about whether or not violent video games effect the actions of America’s youth. Both sides make interesting points, it will be interesting to see if there will ever be a concrete answer on whether or not there is a relation between violence in video games and acting out in real life.

Are studies related to video games and violence biased?

In class we have talked about many different opinions surrounding the issue of do video games correlate to violent behaviors in children and young kids.  The attached article talks about another issue that relates to this dilemma.  The articles discusses whether these conducted studies exhibit a degree of bias.  Patrick Kierkegaard has been a large contributor to opinions on this issue and he has given reason to make people believe that these studies that show video games and violence are correlated are unreliable.  He continues to state that since the early 1990’s statistics show that even though video game use has skyrocketed over the years, the incidence of violent crimes has decreased.  If you would like to read a bit more on this issue, below is the link that will send you to this article.

http://www.science20.com/news_releases/video_games_and_violence_are_studies_biased

Video Games Can Cause Violence: Even non-violent games

While writing my individual boss battle paper on video games and violence, I came across a very interesting finding, purported by Przybylski.  After conducting a study, he concluded that video games CAN and DO lead to short term aggression.  However, this increase in aggressive activity is completely independent of the violent nature of the game.  Rather, gamers get aggressive and agitated after playing a game when the controls of that game are very challenging and/or the game is very hard to beat.

Initially, I was very resistant to the idea.  I thought that violent video games would have SOME kind of statistically significant correlation to an increase in aggression.  However, after thinking about it a little more, I was able to connect some of the dots.  Violent video games tend to have complex controls.  Often times, the gamer must expertly maneuver 2 joy sticks, 4 core buttons, and 4 shoulder buttons.  If you are an inexperienced gamer, this is bound to get incredibly frustrating incredibly fast.  However, games like FIFA and Madden also have very complicated controls; in fact, many times these games have even more complex controls then do shooters.

After reading through this study I examined my roommates playing FIFA and Madden against one another.  What I found definitely supported Przybylski’s argument that complex controls and a lack of competence at playing a game cause frustration, and ultimately, aggression.  When either of my roommates missed a shot or accidentally passed it to the other team in FIFA, they would let out a loud scream, and usually punch something or throw something.  I found this to be very interesting because neither of them are violent kids and they weren’t even playing a violent game!

This example really illustrates how violent video games are no more likely to cause aggression then non-violent games would.  Rather, when gamers are incredibly engaged in a game, really want to win, and “mess up,” they get frustrated, and often times, become much more aggressive then they normally would be, at least for a short amount of time during the game or following the game.

Grand Theft Childhood

I know we haven’t covered violence in video games yet, but I stumbled across this article and found it to be very interesting.  The site takes from a book called “Grand Theft Childhood:  The Surprising Truth about Video Games”.  The site goes over different facts and myths about violence in video games.  One of the most interesting facts that I found is that violence in youth and video game popularity have been moving in opposite directions.  In 1993, the United States faced a record high for violent juvenile crime.  Growing up I was always limited to the amount of video games I could play during the weekends.  I do not even want to fathom what my punishment would have been if I played during the week.  But the book title “Grand Theft Childhood”, I think this book perfectly fits my childhood.  I had to buy the fact that green vegetables were good for me, that I had to go to church every Sunday, and always had to hug my mother and show affection in public.  It’s funny that when you are young, you don’t really ask the question why to often and you tend to accept whatever ideals your parents place in front of you.  When more research comes out in the future about how violent video games aren’t directly related to violence, I wonder if the rating system for video games will be drastically changed.  Like I said before I know we haven’t covered violence in video games yet in this course, but finding these articles over the internet really make me excited to learn more about the subject.  Anyways if you haven’t seen this article yet I suggest you check it out.  Let’s just say I have already had counter arguments with friends and parents alike.  So it is some fun information to learn about.

http://www.grandtheftchildhood.com/GTC/Myths.html

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