So, yes, it's true. (argue about that all you want)
They're bad for you, your children, and by extension me and my planet. But they're popular. The worse they are the "better" they are.
Why are they more fun? Is there any possibility of "good rewarded" in a successful action-based game? Even an A-Team like premise, where the player is doing something dangerous and violent in service to some poor deserving sap, is going to come up "yes" on all the important questions. (I'll find the "should I buy this for my kids?" questions soon. The link has escaped me.)
says that autonomy and competence are the real sell. So if one game is that stupid car game where you score by mowing people down and shooting and raping and such, and another is somehow equally action-oriented but the scoring is based on doing "good things", or even finding the "do no harm" way out of situation, which one will sell better? My money is on the former. Is this just because it is "what we started with", and now that the road to Hell has been paved we're sticking with the smoothest route?
When the entire teenage population begins raping and pillaging I will agree that you have a point. Until then, you have mentally unstable people doing mentally unstable things, and everyone else realizing there is a difference between pixels and real people.
Maybe people who can't distinguish between real-life and video games and who become desensitized to violence are closer to the rule then we thought? Building on my own anecdotal evidence; I am not a violent person at all, and I cringe at the thought of violence. That being said, I really enjoy many of the games mentioned in the study, and violent video games, while not my favorite, are pretty fun.
So, where does that leave us then? Only adults and those who already have a pretty firm grasp on their sense of right and wrong can play violent video games? I grew up playing all kinds of games, some violent some not so much. Maybe the video games I played weren't nearly as realistic and so they didn't have as much of a negative impact on me? I'm still unsure of all these things after reading this study.
March 1 2010 7:03 PM EST
You'll have no argument that even exposure to filmed violence, let alone engagement in virtual violence would desensitize a person to violence itself.
It's like saying that working out leads to a desensitivisation to physical effort, or that reading constantly desensitivizes you to the shock of getting a reading assignment homework... there's absolutely no argument there.
Exposure to ANY stimulus will eventually lead to a certain degree of desensitivisation to that stimulus compared to the first time you were exposed to it.
In other news, water is wet and the clear sky at day is blue.
Now the real (and only) question is, does this desensitivisation lead to statistically significant increased violence ?
As in, does occasionally playing violent video games actually make you more susceptible to becoming violent compared to, say, constantly watching somebody get beaten up in some TV show or on the news ?
And if no to this last one, should we abolish ANY sort of exposure to violent content ? Should we start censoring the news and all possible TV shows too ?
My father didn't have video games. Instead, he and his friends fought all the time. Same for my grandfather, my mother, and pretty much every one I know that is part of their respective generations. None is a murderer yet. Far from there.
I myself have never fought. Have never hurt anyone, have never cheered while witnessing a fight at school or anywhere else. Neither have most of my friends and acquaintances. I am one of the most non-violent people you could find. Still I consume violence every day, in video game or movie form. Even in music, what I listen to is determined by the amount of aggression a song contains. There is a reason I have never had trouble distinguishing between the fiction of the media I consume and real life:
My parents have been telling me the difference between reality and fiction since I was a toddler. It's all a matter of being taught early was violence is like, and the effect it has on real people. (As opposed to pixels.) Kids must learn as soon as possible that what they do to others could be done to them. With this in mind they should treat everyone like they hope to be treated. You can eliminate or lessen the need for real life violence that way, I'm sure.
Nowadays parents just park their kids in front of the TV, giving them whatever games they wanna play without ever talking about what's on the screen. This is the real problem, if you ask me. Consuming violence without knowing what it looks like in RL.
About the test linked above...People react less to violent stuff on TV after playing video games? Big deal, they're still only watching a screen. For the test conducted above to be conclusive, they'd have to show em a real, live fight, no? For example, I certainly don't raise an eyebrow when I'm watching Rambo, but a real fight makes me nauseous. Even if I just played my favorite FPS, believe me. (I'm a HUGE fan of those kill-a-thons.) War footage doesn't raise my pulse either. Sure, I can find it horrible, and be empathetic, but it doesn't shock me. Not like a real fight does, because these things are in diferent "files" in my brain. (Hey, I'm not a psychologist!)
Anyways, I'm running out of time so... I will still call bollocks on this video-games-make-folks-violent stance. I have too much real-life proof of it being exagerated to care. People who have the seed of violence and aggression in them will commit atrocious things regardless of what they watch/play on TV. Especially if they are not made to realize, young, that violence HURTS. But not on TV.
(Sorry bout the typos, I'm kinda in a hurry!)
What does it matter? Video games will never be rid of said violence, no matter how many people point the finger. The games sell, and companies are in the business of making money.
Even if you put a worldwide ban on violence in film/games/media it would only make it more popular and blatent.
Maybe parents should take responsibility for their failures as parents.
Maybe if your kid wasn't allowed to shoot/kill/rape/mate/repeat at the age of 7 because you're too lazy to be a good parent, the world would be a better place.
This study does not show that video games are bad for you. Desensitized does not mean that the person is more violent or more likely to commit violence, just that you can deal with the emotional shock of viewing violence better. The first link below discusses your exact article. Some of the other links show other studys which show little to no link of violence and gaming. Violent desensitivity does not equal moral desensitivity.
"It's the body's way of filtering out repeated stimuli" "All this study attempts to show is that videogames function much like other forms of media and desensitize players to repeated acts of violence."
A long term study (not one afternoon):
"The study saw "no strong effects associated with aggression,"
"For one, there was no drop in the emotional response to death events over time, suggesting that there's not a general desensitization to violence during violent gaming."
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<a href="/bboard/q-and-a-fetch-msg.tcl?msg_id=0030dw">But it's more fun!</a>