Violent Video Games |
Violent Video Games
Concerns over the effect of violent video games on today’s youth have been debated since the late 1970’s. School shootings, criminal behavior, bullying, and violence towards woman have all been blamed on violent video games.
Electronic media plays an important role in the emotional development, social behavior and intellectual functioning of children and youth. Many video games are very helpful for children to facilitate medical treatment, increase learning, and promote pro-social behavior. However, there are also video games that include aggression, violence and sexualized violence that have a ...view middle of the document...
” Violent video games teach youth that violence is an acceptable way of solving conflict and an appropriate way to achieve goals (Bartlett, Branch, Rodeheffer, & Harris, 2009). A 2009 study found that children who play violent video games are less forgiving than players of nonviolent video games are and have less confidence in the use of nonviolent ways to deal with conflict. Violent video games cause players to relate pleasure and happiness with the ability to cause pain in others. (DeGaetano, 1999)
“Playing violent video games causes the development of aggressive behavioral scripts.” (American Psychological Association, 2006) A behavioral script is established from the repetition of activity and influences the subconscious mind. “An example of a behavioral script is a driving script that tells drivers to get in a vehicle, put on a seat belt, and turn on the ignition. Similarly, violent video games can lead to scripts that tell youth to respond aggressively in certain situations.” (Cook MD, 2000) Violence in video games may lead to real world violence when scripts are automatically produced in daily life, such as being nudged in a school hallway.
The routine of repetition and identification with violent characters, and rewards for various acts of violence, may heighten the learning of violence. With the development of more elaborate interactive media, the idea of violent content are of further concern. This is due to the realistic experiences being much more intense, and may be even more helpful to increasing aggressive behavior as compared to passively watching violence on TV and in films. (American Psychological Association, 2006).
Children who see a lot of violence are more likely to view violence as an effective way of settling conflicts. Children exposed to violence are more likely to assume that acts of violence are acceptable behavior (Cook MD, 2000). While duration, intensity, and extent of the impact may vary, there are several measurable negative effects of children's exposure to violent entertainment. (Cook MD, 2000)
Young children are more likely to confuse fantasy violence with real world violence, and without a make up for ethical decision-making, they may duplicate the actions they see in violent video games. A 2009 study found that it takes up to four minutes for the level of aggressive thoughts and feelings in children to return to normal after playing violent video games. It takes five to ten minutes for heart rate and aggressive behavior to return to its baseline. Video games that show the most blood generate thoughts that are more aggressive. When blood is present in video games, there is a measurable increase in arousal and hostility. (Bartlett, Branch, Rodeheffer, & Harris, 2009)
Violence towards women is also a concern. According to Tracy Dietz’s article "An Examination of Violence and Gender Role Portrayals in Video Games: Implications for Gender Socialization and Aggressive Behavior," a...