video game violence

video game violence - The case against violent video games...

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The case against violent video games has been long and full of information and misinformation. Often, advocates of the video game industry latch on to some of the more fallacious arguments made by the opposition in order to make it appear as if there are no good reasons to fight for the censoring of violent video games. However, these advocates often fail to address the more poignant of the arguments that have lasting affect. Many studies point to an indication that violent video games do, in fact, present a behavioral risk to young children who are often a great deal more impressionable than the older groups for whom the games are intended. It is also important to point out that games that are played even by the target audience still impact behavior in that older subset, often in substantially negative and potentially long-term ways. First, it is important to analyze the effects of video game violence of children through an analysis of the research and information presented to us from the academic communities. Second, some of the counter-arguments often presented by industry advocates need be addressed. Third, a review of some of the mechanisms the video game industry has implemented in order to combat opposition and to satiate concerned citizens will be made. Finally, solutions will be presented to combat the problems addressed in the first section. Looking at all of these elements holistically will reveal some of the dangers that violent video games present to children but will also provide arguments as to the correction of the damage that may have already been done. It is fallacious to say that results of video game violence studies have been mixed and have not met with conclusive results. Studies performed by Anderson and Bushman reveal that violent video games are linked with, “increased aggressive behavior, thoughts, and affect; increased physiological arousal; and decreased prosocial behavior”. In
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addition, these studies performed in experimental and correlational statistical analysis reveal that previously believed effect size is much smaller than what is likely true; the reaching effects of video game violence contain a breadth and depth previously misunderstood. Advocates will also argue that violent video games cannot be linked as an ultimate source to aggressive behavior as many of these behaviors also occur in normal play from children who do not play violent video games. While a true assessment, it does not take into account the relative occurrence and severity of aggressive behavior in play. Children exposed for periods of time to violent video games engage in a much greater number of aggressive actions as well as present actions significantly more aggressive than their non-video game playing counterparts. Further, the fact that these results were obtained from correlational studies does not inhibit their validity. Advocates will claim the mantra that causation does not equal correlation. And
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This essay was uploaded on 04/16/2008 for the course PSYC 101 taught by Professor Graham during the Spring '07 term at UCSD.

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video game violence - The case against violent video games...

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