Evidence Lacking On Any Connection Between Video Game Violence And Real Violence

from the so-says-the-research dept

Two professors have taken the time to go through all of the various research over the years that has tried to connect violent video games to actual violence, and discovered many problems with it. They found that research that concludes some sort of connection between the two seems to not use any recognized measure of aggression (allowing for substantial fudging), and that the media attention seems to lead more researchers to study the subject and (perhaps subconsciously) push them towards sensationalizing their findings. Hurray for technopanics. Among the findings:
  • In the last 10 years, video games studies have been overwhelmingly popular compared to studies on other media.
  • Less than half of studies (41%) used well validated aggression measures.
  • Poorly standardized and unreliable measures of aggression tended to produce the highest effects, possibly because their unstandardized format allows researchers to pick and choose from a range of possible outcomes.
  • The closer aggression measures got to actual violent behavior, the weaker the effects seen.
  • Experimental studies produced much higher effects than correlational or longitudinal studies. As experimental studies were most likely to use aggression measures of poor quality, this may be the reason why.
  • There was no evidence that video games produce higher effects than other media, despite their interactive nature.
  • Overall, effects were negligible, and we conclude that media violence generally has little demonstrable effect on aggressive behavior.
Of course, that won't stop lawyers and politicians from grandstanding on the issue...

Filed Under: research, violent video games

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  1. identicon
    becka o., 13 Apr 2009 @ 8:59pm

    um well i think this.

    Im doing my sophomore benchmark on this topic and im for the violence. I do not think there is a link with violece and crimes created by people who played violent games. Im sure the person was already violent. I do believe that the rating system helps it all depends on the rents. Any good parent should know what their child is playing. Im 16 and i love god of war,gears of war, halo and many others and its cool when there is a good graphic and it seems realistic when i kill one of my enemies(im a horrible speller so excuse me on this) but it does not make me violent. I have a huge imagination and im sure other children do and minors have weaker minds and still really do not know the difference of many things but it all comes down to "why was he or she allowed to buy a game not sutible for them" its all in the parenting really, and sales people who should not allow a minor to buy a game over their rating limit. We must have a way to relieve stress and video games sure do help and sometimes the violence takes it out of my system and i come out refreshed and mellow. But if they start to limit many games or ban them then people will start limiting our rights we need a way to let our imagination and im not saying like imaginning creatures and little happy worlds or something i meen we are teenagers and some video games let me pretend im a cool hip spy that needs to take down a whole organization or something and with cencorship there is a certain point it should go to and if its past that point then small rights start to be taken away and it will upset many people and start to build up.(Sorry i know its a bit confusing) All im saying is that parents are complaining but are not really doing anything like checking in on what their child is playing and giving them money and letting them get whatever game they want without checking i meen its their house shouldnt they know what their child is seeing or playing?. So dont complain take action and cencor but to a certain point dont go overboard.

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