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Scientists, Psychologists And The Media Do Not Have Enough Evidence To Support The Claim Of The Relationship Between Criminal Activity Or Criminal Behaviour And Video Games.

1989 words - 8 pages

Thesis Statement: Scientists, Psychologists and the Media do not have enough evidence to support the claim of the relationship between criminal activity or criminal behaviour and video games.The public debate regarding the relationship between video games and violence has brewed for decades. The emergence of video games, dramatically changed children's media environment, and this new form of entertainment raised concern because the negative effects of violent television on children's behaviour had been extensively documented, and video games added an interactive component to the entertainment. Playing violent video-games is now a societal norm - a significant and growing percentage of the world's population incorporates violent video-games into their daily lives. Even if there is a correlation between criminal activity or criminal behaviour and video games, it cannot be said that violent video games are the sole influence.Concerns that video games promote violent behaviour in players started shortly after they became available in the 1970s, especially after the release of "Death Race" in 1976. Renewed attention to the potential effects of violent video games reappeared in the 1990s with the release of first-person shooter games. Psychologists for years have been looking at whether or not there are links between the fantasy violence of video games and real-world violence, and with rare exceptions, they haven't found any evidence to support their theory that violent video games cause violent behaviour (CNET, 2013). Christopher Ferguson, of Texas A&M International University, argued in one paper that "the negative effects of violent games have been exaggerated by some elements of the scientific community, fitting with past cycles of media-focused moral panics." Ferguson also found that over the past 10 years, published studies on the effects of video game violence and behaviour and the effects of video games on aggressive behaviour may be exaggerating the link between violence and aggression (CNET, 2013).Violent video games have been blamed for school shootings, the increase in school yard bullying, as well as violence towards women. Critics argue that these games desensitize players to violence, reward players for simulating violence, and teach children that violence is an acceptable way to resolve conflicts. According to Pro Con, in 2007, 32% of students aged 12-18 reported being bullied at school, compared to 5% in 1999. Some researchers are concerned that violent video games teach children that violence is an acceptable approach to solving conflicts and achieving goals.However, defenders of violent video games argue that the research has failed to show a causal link between violent video games and real-world violence. They argue that correlations between violent video games and violent behaviour can be explained by youth predisposed to violence being attracted to violent entertainment (Video Games - Pro Con, 2014). Additionally, if video...

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