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Violent video games what is all the fuss about

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Violent video games what is all the fuss about

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  2. 2.  “The man accused of killing at least 93 people in Norway described the video game Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 as "part of my training- simulation" in his 1500-page manifesto published online just before the massacre” (Birmingham Metro, 2011) “Stefan Martin-Urban... pulled a pistol from behind his back and methodically shot strangers, his behaviour was eerily similar to characters in the video games he played obsessively”. (Denver Post, 2009) In 2006, a bill prohibiting the sale or rental of games that portray “killing, maiming, dismembering or sexually assaulting an image of a human being” to people younger than 18 years old was passed in California. This was overturned in 2011. But is this just Moral Panic? What is the impact of violent video games on gamers? 2
  3. 3.  Video game genres: sports stimulations, racers, adventures, puzzlers, miscellaneous, platformers,, beat ‘em ups and shoot ‘em ups (Griffiths, 1993) Effects video games larger than those associated with TV & film viewing Increasingly sophisticated graphics: less abstract Interactive nature of games Online and portable Structural characteristics Video game addiction 3
  4. 4.  Video games as most popular entertainment form (Prachett, Research with Boys Girls 2005), children Time spent playing continuing to increase (Escobar-Chaves (1985) 4 hours similar & Anderson, 2008). Harris & Williams per week Almost 30% of 9 year old boys (compared with 12% of (1996) Buchanan 7 hours 4.5 girls) were reported as & Harris hours spending one or more hours daily playing these games (2007) Anderson, 13 hours 5.5 hours (Growing Up in Ireland, 2011) Gentile & Buckley Disregard stereotype of male, teenage gamer profile (2008) 12.4 (Griffiths, Davies and Chappell Gentile et al. hours , 2003) 14.6 hours But what are the effects of playing....is it something of concern? 4
  5. 5.  Games are particularly attractive platforms to young people, they offer an attractive forum for learning (Swing & Anderson, 2008). Video game industry has started to recognise and design games aimed at improving i) Cognition and learning: support multi- sensory, active, and experiential and problem- based learning & activation of prior knowledge. ii) Health Benefits: Physiotherapy/OT/Distract iii) Social Benefits: 5
  6. 6. 89% of games in the market may contain elements of violence, and almost half of these games may include a form of serious violence taking place against another character (Children Now, 2001).Aggressive Behaviour,Aggressive CognitionAggressive Affect.School performance, peer relations, ability to take others perspective and/or sympathise , increased arousal. 6
  7. 7.  A reduction in helping/prosocial behaviour and empathy and an increase in condoning of attitudes towards violence. Adults, adolescents & children Correlation with more positive attitudes towards violence in wars, intimate partner violence and general normative aggressive beliefs Neural desensitization to violence predicts increased aggression following violent video game exposure (Engelhardt, 2011) 7
  8. 8. Which types of victims elicit higher levels of blame and lack of empathy and understanding from others ?Victims of sexual violenceGender differencesVictims who are children: Bullying researchPrevious research has explored the impact on young people’s attitudes towards criminals (Lee et al, 2010) and towards crimeViera & Krcmar (2011) the structure of violent video games limit children’s abilities to develop perspectives of victimsGreitemeyer & McLatchie (2011) : Dehumanising process 8
  9. 9.  What is the impact of violent video game play on attitudes towards victims of crime? Address criticism of the research in the field Gamers who play violent video games will exhibit less concern for different types of victims than gamers who play non-violent video games. Gender and Age differences in concern scores 9
  10. 10. Sample: 206 participants (129 males and 76 females) The participants were aged between 12 and 24 years (mean = 16.85 years; SD = 2.57 years).Materials:i) Victim Concern Scale: Clemments et al (2006); 21-item scale asking participants to rate their concern for different types of victims. General Victims Vulnerable or Violent Crime Victims Property Theft Victims Culpable Victimsii) Violent Video Game Exposure: Dill & Anderson (2000):an overall violent video game exposure score for each participant 10
  11. 11. Male and female meanvictim concern scores Concern for Victims70 Victim Concern 7060 6050 50 Overall 4040 General 30 Vulnerable30 Culpable 2020 Property 10 010 0 Male Female 11
  12. 12. Significant negative correlation betweena) exposure and overall concern (r = -.167, p<0.05),b) exposure and concern for general victims (r = -.302, p<0.05)c) exposure and victim concern for vulnerable victims , r =.154, p<0.05 )d) for culpable victims, r =-.238, p<0.05. This showed that high levels of violent game play were associated with lower levels of overall victim concern, concern for general victims, vulnerable victims and for culpable victims. 12
  13. 13. The results suggest that young people who play more violent video games have less concern for general victims and for culpable victims, and these effects cannot be explained by gender or age differences in the participant sample.Young people who play violent video games also reported less concern for victims overall and for vulnerable victims and this effect was not due to age differences.* Males: less concern for culpable and general victimsAge differences in terms of types of victims This study is the first to explore directly young people’s exposure to violent video games and their concern for victims of crimeLess concern for what could be considered the less serious crimes or those who they may believe may be less affected by these crimes. 13
  14. 14.  The long-term exposure to violent video games may lead to people developing particular views of culpability and levels of blame, with higher levels of culpability(and therefore less concern) evident as young people played more violent video games Individual experiences that people have playing violent video games Gender differences Greater exploration of attitudes Long term effects 14
  15. 15. Most young people spend more time watching screen media than in any other activity apart from sleeping (Strasberg et al, 2009).Build protective factorsParental role in monitoring the media use.” A new bill has been submitted to the U.S. House of Representatives that will require most video games to include a warning label that states: "WARNING: Exposure to violent video games has been linked to aggressive behaviour.“ CBS News March 20th 2012But what about attitudes?Definition of harm and impact of harm changing?Individual and Societal Implications of findings 15
  16. 16. “I could play it for hours, I dont know what it is that makes it so addictive. I think its the fact that you play the bad guy and have to complete all the missions and try not to get caught. Its not really hurting anyone though, right?” Female Gamer (Aged, 20 years) 16
  17. 17.  Anderson, C.A., & Dill, K.E. (2000). Video games and aggressive thoughts, feelings and behaviour in the labratory and in life. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 78, 772-790. Anderson, C. A., Gentile, D. A., & Buckley, K. E. (2007). Violent video game effects on children and adolescents: Theory, research, and public policy. New York: Oxford University Press. Clements, C. B., Brannen, D. N., Kirkley, S. M., Gordon, T. M. and Church, W. T. (2006), The measurement of concern about victims: Empathy, victim advocacy and the Victim Concern Scale (VCS). Legal and Criminological Psychology, 11: 283–295. Engelhardt, C.E., Bartholow, B.D., & Saults, J.S. (2011). Violent and nonviolent video games differentially affect physical aggression for individuals high versus low in dispositional anger. Aggressive Behavior, 37, 539-546. Gentile, D. A., Anderson, C. A., Yukawa, S., Ihori, N., Saleem, M., Ming, L. K., Liau, A. K., Khoo, A., Bushman, B. J., Huesmann, L. R., & Sakamoto, A. (2009). The effects of prosocial video games on prosocial behaviors: International evidence from correlational, longitudinal, and experimental studies. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 35(6), 752-763. Greitemeyer, T. and McLatchie, N. (2011). Denying humanness to others: A newly discovered mechanism by which violent video games increase aggressive behavior. Psychological Science, 22(5):659-665. Griffiths, M. D. (1993). Are computer games bad for children? The Psychologist: Bulletin of the British Psychological Society, 6, 401–407. Harris, M.B. & Williams, R. (1985). Video games and school performance. Education, 105(3), 306-309. Strasburg, V.C., Wilson, B.J. & Jordan, A.B. (2009). Children, Adolescents and the Media. (2nd Ed). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. Viera, E.T. & Krcmar, M. (2011) The Influences of Video Gaming on US Childrens Moral 17 Reasoning About Violence Journal of Children and Media, 5(2), pp 113-131

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