Violence in Video Games

comparative Essay
1088 words
1088 words

The negative impact of video games on youth has been a hotly debated topic since before Pac-man ate his first Pac-dot. Recently though, due to horrific school shootings and record sales of violent video games such as the Grand Theft Auto and Call of Duty series, video games as a whole have been put under a microscope. The question now is: Are violent video games really such a significant factor when it comes to youth violence? The current research and information points to no. Although some research reveals that violent video games may cause temporary aggression, there has been no evidence that it causes violent crimes such as assault or murder. Christopher Ferguson, an associate professor at Stetson University and researcher into the effect media has on young children wrote an article titles“ Video Games: The Latest Scapegoat for Violence”. In his article, he states:
My meta-analysis concluded that there was no evidence to support either a causal or correlation relationship between video games and aggressive behavior. My impression is that social science made up its mind that video games cause aggression before many data were available, and has subsequently attempted to fit square pieces of evidence into round theoretical holes. (qtd. in

Brad J. Bushmann and Craig A. Anderson are highly recognizable psychology professors that agree that violent video games has a significant negative impact on youth including teens to become more violent. They have both published numerous articles on the effects media has on its audience and testified in front of many hearings including Congressional hearings . In 2002, the collaborated and published a report titled Violent Video Games and Hostile Expectations: A tes...

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...t Video Games and Hostile Expectations: A Test of the General Aggression Model.” Personality and Social Psychology bulletin (2002): Print.
Ferguson, Christopher and Cheryl K. Olson. “Video games do not make vulnerable teens more violent.” Springer (26 August 2013): Web. 23 October 2013
Ferguson, Christopher “Video Games: The Latest Scapegoat for Violence” Tamiu (2009): Web. 10 October 2013
“How Much Do You Know About Video Games?” Entertainment Software Rating Board. 2013. Web. 23 October 2013
“The Final Report and Findings of The Safe School Initiative: Implications for the prevention of school attacks in The United States.” United States. U.S. Department of Homeland Security. May 2002:Web. 23 October 2013
Youth Violence National and State Statistics at a Glance. United States Center for Disease Control and Prevention (19 June 2009). Web. 25 October 2013

In this essay, the author

  • Explains that the negative impact of video games on youth has been a hotly debated topic since before pac-man ate his first pac-dot.
  • Concludes that there was no evidence to support either acausal or correlation relationship between video games and aggressive behavior.
  • Explains that the esrb reports that in 2010, the video games industry generated 10.5 billions dollars in sales. call of duty: black ops and red dead redemption sold millions of units.
  • Explains that the united states secret service and the u.s. department of education launched a collaborated report called the safe school initiative to investigate past school violence that ended with at least one death.
  • Explains that a recently published study conducted by christopher ferguson showed how violent video games affect children with mental disorders.
  • Compares the ethnic makeup of students in an urban and suburban school.
  • Explains ferguson's study may have debunked this long held claim that children with mental disorders are particularly vulnerable to the effects of media, particularly violent video games.
  • Concludes that the association between violent video games and aggression related outcomes in children, even those with elevated mental health symptoms, may be minimal.
  • Opines that as the nintendo generation matures, video games will become normalized and part of this generation’s culture in the same way television, movies, and radio have. the esrb has established a simple but effective rating system.
  • Cites brad j. and craig a. anderson's article, "video games and hostileexpectations: a testof the general aggression model."
  • Summarizes the final report and findings of the safe school initiative: implications for the prevention of school attacks in the united states.
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