The Games Media Violence Plays With Your Brain

2343 words - 10 pages

“Am I concerned about guys who play video games 10 hours a day? Yes, but I’m equally concerned about anyone who spends 10 hours a day doing one thing” (Wood, n.d.). Since 1950, scientists have been doing studies and research about the effects of violence in media. They didn’t start focusing on video game violence until the late 1980s(Carey,2013). This brings up the question that many people are asking in today’s culture. Is the growth of violence in video games going to have an affect on the younger generations? Through these studies they have gained much knowledge about the effects video games can have on the brain. The video game industry is a prominent one and has been flourishing for decades. The question whether or not video games are harmful to its players is crucial to answer, as the industry grows even larger. Video games can have negative effects on players, but only if they aren’t played responsibly.
The fact that all types of media have become more violent in the past decade is one that everyone can agree on. The real question is if this change in media has had a negative effect on the viewers. This is why researchers have been studying this topic for over sixty years. They started to focus on violence in video games when it rose to one of the highest media markets. This industry took in over 20.1 billion dollars in 2012. The fact that over 51 percent of all Americans have played or play video games on a regular basis makes it one the leading types of media around(Wood, 1999). These fears of the video game industry are similar to the early fears and panic about rock music, Dungeons & Dragons, and comic books. These sources of media were studied in the 1950’s to try and find the effects they had on the consumer. This is similar to what they are doing today with violence in video games.
The genre of first person shooters is the largest and know as one of the most violent game genres. First person games are games that are played in a first person perspective. This genre of video games alone makes up a five billion dollar market alone. The first person shooters games are one of the top, if not the top, portion of the video game industry. This concerns many parents and doctors since it is the most violent type of game. The violence continues to get more intense in games as technology advances. This makes it possible for video game designers to produce games that are bloodier and gorier, therefore more realistic. Many video game developers believe they themselves are not the cause of this change in the media’s content. This quote from a developer explains why this change might have occurred, “For a long time, the money has stayed with games themed for teenage boys, so the industry has been skewed in that direction”(Wood,1999). Another says activities such as competition and combat have come from the success of existing toys and games.
Developers have tried to help reduce the playing of violent games by minors. The main way they have...

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