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Guns, games and real world aggression & violence

kat · 3 · 28365

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Offline kat

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According to a recent poll it was determined that the British public generally believe that games cause real world aggression and violence. Interestingly, the older a person was, the less contact they had with games, the more likely they were to respond positively to "games = violence", hardly a surprise considering the leading question - "Playing video / computer games... They can be a cause of real-world violence and aggression".

Unfortunately this has meant, for anyone wanting to use this 'research' at least, that discussing the true meaning of "games = violence" falls short by a considerable margin because respondents were never asked any qualitative follow up questions, even the most basic and simple, such as;
  • "What do you mean by 'causing violence' within the context of video / computer games"
  • "Can you give examples of video / computer games you consider as causing violence?"
  • "Have you played any of the computer / video games mentioned in your previous response?"
  • "If not, where did you find out about video / computer games causing violence?"
  • "What made you respond that video / computer games cause violence?"
Sadly all we have is a sliding scale of "Yes I agree" to / from "No I disagree". Hardly enough data to be considered research for this discussion to be taken seriously or in any positive light / direction... That is unless you happen to be an politician, who already appear to be grabbing at this half-baked information as validation that games do indeed cause violence because... the public said so. And we constantly wonder why / how they make such ill-informed decisions (Ed. no we don't!).

Incidentally, if we really want to look into this debate about audio-visual stimulation (that's all games are in essence) being a cause of violence the search can be started at no better place than the Military's pursuit of the so called "Super-Soldier"; there's absolutely stacks of publicly available data going back to World War II (and beyond) covering experiments to produce more aggressive and / or violent but controllable 'weapons'. Real science. Real research. Not pithy surveys signed off by someone with a few letters after their name.

Quicklinks to other posts of importance.

(note: update bookmarks and/or social/share links. Primary posts originally in a single topic have been split and moved to their own topics to make it easier to track/discuss issues individually. kat)

- Violence against women; "Freedom of speech ends where threats abound"
- How social context influences the violence-aggression relationship
- Violence against males in games doesn't count... another study that 'proves' it.
- Taking a (misguided) stance on guns in games.
- Being ignored: silencing at SXSW.
- The dark side of diversity: "positive discrimination" (reverse discrimination).
- Online Harassment: The Australian Woman’s Experience.
- Consultation on Interim Revised CPS Guidelines on Prosecuting Social Media.
- Japan’s record on women’s rights to face review by UN Committee.
- Sexist games = sexist gamers.
- (not so) macho, macho men.
- #educate, #mentorate, #gamergate - encouraging STEM participation
- Women in IT (STEM) [#WomenInSTEM]
- Keeping kids safe; do more...
- Swatting
- Adults Only ("AO") rating for video games will save the children.
- Parents to be reported to police for Call of Duty.
- Petition to ban GTA 5 (Australia).
- Does media violence predict societal violence? (study).
- Long-term Effects of Violent Video Games on Aggressive Behavior.
- Facebook policy change on 'guns', knock-on to gamers.

Offline ratty redemption

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good points, and that was an interesting article you linked to kat.

also how many game devs (who actually make these violent video games) end up loosing control of their minds and massacring their fellow office workers or families?

i don't think i've heard of a single case to date. and we know the devs spend months on end, if not years working long hours on those audio visual stimuli.